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Profiles


Keith How



Nicky Crewe pays tribute to her friend and Pennyblackmusic writer Keith How who died unexpectedly in January.


Production Crew Confront Covid



Last April Cila Warncke for an article at Pennyblackmusic spoke to several people who worked in production and behind the scenes in music about the devastating impact that the Coronavirus crisis was starting to have on them. A year on she revisits them and others in the same situation to find out where they are now.


Doug Hoekstra



Pennyblackmusic is proud to premiere the video for 'Wintertime', the third single single from Nashville-based singer-songwriter and writer Doug Hoekstra's forthcoming first album in ten years, 'The Day Deserved'.


Reg Meuross



Including discs which have been out of print for some time, a new six CD set of Somerset singer-songwriter Reg Meuross’s output from 1996 until 2013 brings all of his work together. Malcolm Carter reviews.


Neil Anderson



Nicky Crewe reads this rollicking tale of The Limit, the legendary Sheffield club.


Stephen McLaren



Pennyblackmusic is proud to premiere the video for 'Put Me On The Television', the debut single from Edinburgh-based singer-songwriter Stephen McLaren's forthcoming dream-pop second album 'They Don’t Put Any Money in Your Pocket'.


Miscellaneous



Nicky Crewe finds that Andrew Wild's new book in Sonicbond Publishing’s 'On Track' series is a definitive guide to Crosby, Stills and Nash not forgetting Neil Young’s contributions.


Gerry Marsden



Nick Dent-Robinson reflects on the career of Gerry Marsden, the frontman of the record-breaking 1960s Mersey Sound band, Gerry and the Pacemakers, who died in January.


Miscellaneous



Nick Assirati sets out to make the music of The Clash accessible to newcomers and/or younger fans. Fiona Hutchings investigates whether he succeeds.


Nirvana



Malcolm Carter examines 'Songlife', a new vinyl box set from 1960's pop/psychedelic act Nirvana, which combines five albums plus a previously unreleased musical.


Pink Floyd



Recorded during their longest ever tour, a reissue of 1988 concert film The Delicate Sound of Thunder sees Pink Floyd attempting to adapt their pioneering psych/ prog rock for a new generation. Richard Lewis reviews


Miscellaneous



Our writers and photographers list their favourite albums of the year.


Miscellaneous



Maarten Schiethart highlights some of his favourite 7 inch and 12 inch releases of the year.


Cliff Richard



Bob Nicholson explores the misguided perspective that rock icon Cliff Richard is ‘risk adverse’.


Common



Chicago-raised rap artist, Common, lays bare his spiritual growth in his sophomore book, ‘Let Love Have the Last Word’ in 'Raging Pages'.


Toots Hibbert



Maarten Schiethart reflects upon the life of pioneering reggae artist Toots Hibbert, who died in September.


Miscellaneous



Keith How finds Georg Purvis' account of Pink Floyd’s history through the 1970s not only fascinating but a compulsive read even for a know it all fan!


Alison O' Donnell



Malcolm Carter examines folk legend Alison O'Donnell's two new digital releases, a compilation of her 50-year career in music and a new set of songs with Head South By Weaving.


Silent Boys



Dixie Ernill examines the career of under-rated Richmond, Virginia indie-pop band The Silent Boys.


Bruce Springsteen



Nick Dent-Robinson assesses Bruce Springsteen's extraordinary latest album, 'Letter to You'.


Fontaines DC



Dastardly finds the second LP from Dublin 5-piece Fontaines D.C. splices hypnotic lyrics with rhythmic driving passion


Tuts Chicago



Philamonjoro reflects on short-lived but influential Chicago music venue Tuts in its 40th anniversary year.


John Howard



Returning with the second volume of a three-part autobiography, John Howard takes Ben Howarth and John Clarkson on a compelling guided tour of the fringes of the late-70s, early 80s music industry, while also navigating an increasingly complex personal life in the shadow of the Aids crisis.


CP Lee



Nicky Crewe reflects on the life of her friend, Mancunian musician, writer and Alberto Y Los Trios Paranoias frontman CP Lee, who died in July.


Miscellaneous



The news that Q magazine was closing this year after a 34-year run due to Covid-19 sent shock waves through the music community. Ex Q editorial assistant Cila Warncke talks to other former work colleagues about their fond memories of the influential magazine.


Stuart Moxham



Tommy Gunnarson examines two new albums by former Young Marble Giants mastermind Stuart Moxham, the first of which 'Interior Windows' is a compilation of unreleased recordings by his project the Gist, and the second 'The Devil Laughs' on which he has teamed up with Louis Philippe once again.


Fairport Convention



Thirty albums in, Fairport Convention finally get a book dedicated to every song on every album. Tommy Gunnarsson is impressed.


Roger Waters



Richard Lewis watches a highly impressive document of Pink Floyd founder Roger Waters’ huge 'Us + Them' tour, which sees the musician in typically uncompromising, fiery form.


Little Richard



Lisa Torem reminisces about one of her favourite rock ‘n’ roll heroes, Little Richard, who died in May.


Miscellaneous



After talking to comic Jimmy Tarbuck about his recollections of Tom Jones and Elvis, Nick Dent-Robinson reflects upon his own memories of seeing Elvis live.


Aurlus Mabele



Maarten Schiethart looks at the career of Soukous' star and Le Groupe Loketo singer Aurlus Mabélé who died in March.


Dave Haslam



Nicky Crewe takes us through the first three titles of Dave Haslam’s 'Art Decades' series, which are a captivating taste of more to come


Hollies



Bob Nicholson revisits the history and legacy of The Hollies, and ponders how the band have managed to go the distance.


Florian Schneider



Maarten Schiethart reflects on the groundbreaking career of the late Kraftwerk co-founder Florian Schneider


Dave Greenfield



Long-term fan Denzil Watson pays tribute to Stranglers’ keyboard player Dave Greenfield, who died on the 3rd May.


Cliff Richard and The Shadows



In his second feature for Pennyblackmusic on Cliff Richard and The Shadows, Bob Nicholson reflects on their career post the summer of 1963 and up against Beatlemania.


Miscellaneous



Nicky Crewe examines how the music community in her home city of Sheffield is coping with the challenges presented by the ongoing Coronavirus crisis.


JB Morrison



Following the success of his memoir last year, JB Morrison, the former frontman of Carter USM, is back with his fifth novel. Fiona Hutchings ponders whether 'Stranger Things coming to Brixton' is a good thing.


Karen Dalton



Keith How reflects on the rediscovered career of 60's folk artist Karen Dalton and new box set, 'Recording is the Trip'.


Production Crew Confront Covid



Cila Warncke writes of the devastating impact of the Coronavirus crisis on those behind the scenes in music.


Madonna



With Madonna having just completed a fifteen night residency at the London Palladium, Nick Dent-Robinson recollects seeing an early preview of her current 'Madame X' tour in New York last summer.


Neil Innes



Nick Dent-Robinson reflects on the career of Neil Innes, who died in December, and, as well as forming creative alliances with top 1960's performers, became legendary for creating catchy melodies and contributing greatly to 'Monty Python'.


Aruba Red



Zena Grieg examines a new song and video from Jack Bruce's daughter Aruba Red, which reflects on her own journey and battle with depression.


Groovy Uncle



Malcolm Carter reflects on the reissue of two of 60's pop-influenced Medway-based band Groovy Uncle’s finest albums on extremely limited vinyl.


Miscellaneous



The fifth instalment of Cherry Red’s impressive C box sets is here, this time focusing on the dismal pop year that was 1990. Tommy Gunnarsson is far from impressed with the music, but more so with the compilation itself.


Cliff Richard and The Shadows



Bob Nicholson asks if the legacy of Cliff Richard and the Shadows and their influence on the British pop/rock movement has ever been properly recognized or whether they remain under-acknowledged.


Chills



Dastardly attends the premiere of a frank but endearing new documentary about New Zealand band The Chills and their frontman Martin Phillipps


Fairport's Cropredy Convention



Nick Dent-Robinson previews this year's annual Fairport Cropredy Convention which will take place between the 13th August and 15th August and, as well as Fairport Convention, will include sets from among many others Clannad, Richard Thompson, Grace Jones, the Pet Shop Boys and Steve Hackett.


Go Betweens



The second instalment of the Go-Betweens anthology series is finally here, and Tommy Gunnarsson delves into a vast content of demo and live recordings, but also enjoys the band’s final three albums in their remastered glory.


Miscellaneous



Nick Dent-Robinson enjoys a fantastic tribute concert to the late Jack Bruce, which filmed at the London Roundhouse in 2018, has just been released on CD and DVD.


Karen and the Sorrows



Kimberly Bright reflects upon rising band Brooklyn’s Karen and the Sorrows and finds that with their second LP 'Guaranteed Broken Heart' they have created a minutely authentic and timeless traditional country album on the theme of heartbreak and loss.


Ten Great Lost Indie Albums



Denzil Watson provides the third and final part and the top three albums in his popular 'Ten Great Lost Indie Albums' series.


Miscellaneous



Proud Sheffielder Fiona Hutchings checks out the latest curated collection from Cherry Red Records promising plenty of punk and post punk gems, including twelve previously unreleased tracks.


Dinosaur Jr



Mark Rowland examines Dinosaur Jr's four 1990's albums, which have just been re-released in expanded and remastered editions on Cherry Red.


Joe Brown



Nick Dent-Robinson reflects on the enduring sixty year career of rock legend Joe Brown, who is currently touring the UK.


Kate Daisy Grant



Zena Grieg previews vocalist/composer Kate Daisy Grant's new album which explores world lullabies.







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