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Our Love To Admire Interpol

Much has been said of the similarities between Interpol and Editors and, certainly, there is likeness in the baritone vocals, sharp guitars and gas-yourself-in-the-garage lyrics. Both bands released an album this year, and some competition was anticipated. But where Editors swerved bizarrely towards brazenly epic (and ultimately hollow) stadium rock, Interpol have hardly moved at all. This is genuinely disappointing at first, but where the pretenders to Interpol’s gloom-rock prove themselves to be as fleeting as they were thrilling at first; ‘Our Love To Admire’ has the layered quality that means it improves with every listen. ‘Pioneer to the Falls’, the album’s first track, is a trademark slow-builder, ‘No I in Threesome’ a neat, slick single, ‘Mammoth’ a relentlessly driving anthem that will have indie kids on dancefloors all over the place jumping as high as their grubby converse will send them and ‘Pace is the Trick’ the show-stealer with it’s menacing chorus and spine-chilling finishing riff.

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The Essential Paul Simon Paul Simon

He’s often filed under ‘World Music’, but Paul Simon has always meant more to us South Africans than to, say, a Bulgarian audience. His collaboration with – and subsequent launch of – Ladysmith Black Mambazo on 1986’s ‘Graceland’ produced one of the most unforgettable albums of the decade. It was unforgettable for all the right reasons, of course, unlike a good deal of the music created in the 80s (lest we forget the likes of Europe and their infantile ‘Final Countdown’). But as fans will know and newcomers would undoubtedly assume, there is a lot more to Paul Simon than Graceland. Indeed, he must be afforded most of the applause for the music he made with Art Garfunkel – one need only inspect the latter’s disappearance from the face of the earth following his split with Simon to know as much. There were also several solo albums and beloved hits such as ’50 Ways To Leave Your Lover’, ‘Slip Slidin’ Away’ and ‘Still Crazy After All Of These Years’. In short, The Essential Paul Simon is just that: Essential.

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Live In Dublin Bruce Springsteen

Over 20 songs and no room for ‘Born in the USA’? Huh? It seems curious, but only to those who have never really understood Bruce Springsteen. When George Bush Snr. chose that track as his campaign anthem when it was released in the 80s, Springsteen baulked in horror. Listen to the words and you’ll notice that Springsteen was actually singing about how Vietnam veterans were mistreated on return from the war. Now, 20 years on, with another Bush waging another war in another country, he’s probably not bothered with people who don’t get the irony. In recent years The Boss has spent more time touring America drumming up support for the Democrats that he seemed lost to the international world. But if the flagship anti-war song is missing, Springsteen’s sentiment was no less resounding, from the stomping opener ‘Atlantic City’ to a stadium bursting sing-along to ‘We Shall Overcome’, he’s as furious and brilliant as ever.