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The Guardian

Conor Oberst review contemporary Americana's dark heart

ABC, GlasgowThe one-time poster boy for angsty, lo-fi indie rock has matured emotionally, tracing an arc from depression to romanceEven if Conor Oberst has vacated his Bright Eyes alter-ego for the foreseeable, the Nebraskan remains uniquely entrenched at

Medea review Carrie Cracknell's play is a tragic force to be reckoned with

Helen McCrory excels in this modern-dress take on Euripides that is alive with complexity and psychological astuteness.

Euro Noir by Barry Forshaw review

Euro Noir offers an exhilarating, whistle-stop tour of Europe viewed through its crime fiction.

Royal Court play explores virtual online world of paedophile fantasy

In Jennifer Haley's play, adults adopt child avatars to enact fantasies of illicit sex – raising issues around freedom of expression and the pernicious influence of explicit material.

Ben Langmaid says he left La Roux because of 'idiot' collaborator

La Roux's second album, Trouble in Paradise, might have been attracting critical raves, but it hasn't stopped the duo at the heart of the group – Elly Jackson, and her now-departed songwriting partner Ben Langmaid – getting caught up in a bizarre prox

24/7: Late Capitalism and the Ends of Sleep by Jonathan Crary review

A timely and important polemic that demonstrates how capitalism makes us willing connivers in our own sleeplessnessYou may know Joseph Wright's painting, Arkwright's Cotton Mills by Night. Into a dark, almost rudimentary moonlit landscape the artist has

Jerry Dammers's Spatial AKA Orchestra (and Reggae Ensemble) review profound, ecstatic and moving

Barbican, LondonDammers melds Sun Ra's musical legacy with ska, Dixieland jazz and Jamaican pop in a majestic four-hour showWhile the Specials have latterly reunited without founder Jerry Dammers for a series of tours, their former leader has been pursuin

The Emperor Waltz review Philip Hensher leads us a merry dance

Hensher's foray into the portmanteau novel is full of character and colour – but it's a riddle of a book.

Bad Banks: Greed, Incompetence and the Next Global Crisis review a rogues' gallery of financial scandal

Alex Brummer's demolition job on the scandals of the last 10 years is a work of controlled menaceJust under a decade ago I found myself in common cause with an unlikely ally. The middle of the 2000s marked the second coming of the "loadsamoney" culture th

T Bone Burnett: How I set lyrics for Bob Dylan's new Basement Tapes to music

Wanting to do justice to Dylan and be true to the spirit in which the lyrics were originally written, Burnett got together with musicians including Elvis Costello and Marcus Mumford to produce a new albumLast autumn, I received a message from Bob Dylan's