Author Archives: WalkerWords

Over the Rhine, Union Chapel, November 2018

It was unusual to approach an Over the Rhine gig with no particular expectations. I’ll blame history. The last two times the duo played London, the set list was virtually identical – and with so many tracks off 2013’s double … Continue reading

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Vesper Sky – “Enjoy, Not Endure”

When you come across work by talented artists, their ability can shout at you, while they themselves are more discreet with their style. Vesper Sky is a collection of songs, spoken words – and various combinations of the two – … Continue reading

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Salvador (Blu-ray/DVD) – Getting the Truth Out

Oliver Stone’s Salvador makes its UK début on Blu-ray within weeks of Oscar Romero being canonised earlier this month. The archbishop criticised actions by either side in the Salvadoran Civil War that adversely affected civilians. It was the main reason … Continue reading

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DJ Andy Hunter, Part 1: Dance Music Pioneer

While it feels like churches have hosted classical concerts forever; secular rock artists are increasingly using them as venues; and Christians have had decades to evolve (somewhat soft) rock music in worship, there is still a great black hole where … Continue reading

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Andy Hunter, Part 2: Presence – the World’s First Arts-based Devotional App?

Some new releases get launched with a huge media blast, while some just seep out slowly. One that surely deserves a blast, but has quietly evolved in stages, is Andy Hunter’s Presence project, its vision to inspire people’s reflections and … Continue reading

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Richard Durrant – Stringhenge

It’s not easy to get politics into largely instrumental, largely classical music, but that hasn’t stopped guitarist Richard Durrant trying. Straight after finishing Stringhenge – “the most personal album I have ever made” – he cycled over a thousand miles … Continue reading

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Eliza Gilkyson Torpedoes the Ship of Fools on Secularia

“I wouldn’t call myself a Christian, but I am spiritual…” and “I’m not religious, but…” These phrases often come from people who either search for God or experience him, but want to distance themselves from established faith. American Eliza Gilkyson … Continue reading

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Band of Love: Folk Fever

(Island Records) Just when I thought there were no genre mash ups left – and Malcolm McLaren’s mix of punk and opera was a strange one – we now have folk artists covering disco songs. What do we get – … Continue reading

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Speechless

Here’s some of the best instrumental music of the year so far to come across my desk (or kitchen table, to be more accurate). There is jazz, neo-classical, folk, Celtic and various points in between. Most of it is cottage … Continue reading

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Aretha Franklin, Queen of Soul, Daughter of the Church

You are huge when people know you by one name only. Like Bowie and Prince, the prized pair that we lost in 2016, Aretha Franklin was one such singer. The name ‘Aretha’ only meant one person – and often, when … Continue reading

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Beth Rowley – Gota Fria

Ten years is a lot of life to condense down into 59 minutes, which may explain why Gota Fria smoulders away, glowing red hot like it’s about to burst into wild fire. It has been that long since Rowley’s last … Continue reading

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Fairport Convention – What We Did on our Saturday

Swipe me, 50 years already? “Who knows where the time goes,” indeed. And with Fairport’s penchant for losing people somewhat permanently, who knows how many of them will be around to celebrate 60 years? So this was an anniversary to … Continue reading

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Angélique Kidjo – Remain in Light

For Angélique Kidjo – probably Africa’s best-known female singer – to record a version of Talking Heads’ classic art-rock masterwork Remain in Light is both an obvious choice and a strange one.

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Moby – Everything was Beautiful and Nothing Hurt

All things bleak and beautiful, a creature great and small. On this release, Moby bares all: the shame of his past, his helplessness and pain in the present and his fear of a dystopian future. But, being Moby, despite the … Continue reading

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Early Man

(PG, Aardman) Released in a World Cup year, even those who avoid ‘the beautiful game’ can enjoy the punfest and ingenuity of another Aardman film. Early Man is a clash of civilisations, where football is the means of bringing them … Continue reading

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The Old Dark House (Dual Format DVD/Blu Ray)

(Eureka) You may or may not be not grateful for this, but if it wasn’t for films like The Old Dark House, you’d never have got Scooby Doo. You can imagine the start: to quote another famous cartoon dog, “It … Continue reading

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Joanne Hogg & Co: The Map Project

Joanne Hogg is best known for her keyboards and lead vocals with Celtic-jazz-prog-folkies Iona, but this 6 track EP is a very different affair.

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Marillion – All One Tonight

Marillion have come a long way over the years, The band that started out derided by music fans as just a Genesis rip off went on to have a couple of excellent hit singles and now has members in demand … Continue reading

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The Decemberists – I’ll Be Your Girl

(Rough Trade/ Capitol Records) 11 tracks / 43 mins There are plenty of songwriters covering the bizarre political climate across the States and Europe, but who uses black humour like The Decemberists? This one is like New Order making a … Continue reading

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Darlingside – Extralife

It is rare for me to be so instantly struck by a new album. After hearing about four songs (or maybe only four parts of songs) I was contacting the band for a press copy. It’s the reverb-drenched harmonies that … Continue reading

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