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John Clarkson


Interviews



Last Harbour and Anna Kashfi's James Youngjohns speaks to John Clarkson about his new project Lammergeiers and their debut album, 'And I Will Wake the Dawn Itself'.




Cult Figures
Outsiders
Outsiders

Gary Jones, Jon Hodgson and Lee McFadden from post-punk band Cult Figures speak to John Clarkson about their reformation after an absence of 36 years and new album ‘DerItend'.
Bassist Bob Lawrence, in the second of two interviews with 70's group the Outsiders, talks to John Clarkson about his memories of the group and front man Adrian Borland, and their new five CD box, set ‘Count for Something'.
In the first of two interviews with 70's group the Outsiders, drummer Adrian Janes speaks to John Clarkson about his underrated group, which was the first band of the Sound's front man Adrian Borland, and their new five CD box set on Cherry Red, 'Count for Something'.




Amelia Fletcher and Rob Pursey
Nirvana
Jeremy Thoms
Remnants/Saloon Bar Romeos

Talulah Gosh, Heavenly and Tender Trap's Amelia Fletcher and Rob Pursey speak to John Clarkson about their current band The Catenary Wires' forthcoming third album and their three other new musical projects, European Sun, Swansea Sound and The Drift.
John Clarkson speaks to Patrick Campbell-Lyons from influential 60’s orchestral group Nirvana about his group’s career and their new vinyl box set ‘Songlife’.
Edinburgh-based singer-songwriter Jeremy Thoms talks to John Clarkson about the reissue of his early 1980's band the President Men's two singles and his 1990's group New Leaf's debut album 'On Safari'as well as his plans for his label Stereogram Recordings and band the Cathode Ray.
Americana guitarist and songwriter Mark Fletcher speaks to John Clarkson about both his bands, the Remnants and Saloon Bar Romeos.


Bathers
Electric Cinema
Terry Edwards
European Sun

John Clarkson speaks to Chris Thomson, the frontman with the Scottish group the Bathers, about the reissue of their classic trilogy of '90's albums on the German label Marina Records, and 'Sirenesque', their forthcoming first album in twenty years.
John Clarkson speaks to indie group the Electric Cinema about their reformation after a hiatus of eleven years and their just released second album, 'Animals + Gods'.
Multi-instrumentalist solo artist and successful session player Terry Edwards speaks to John Clarkson about his two new compilations, 60th birthday box set, 'Very Terry Edwards', and covers album, 'Stop Trying to Sell Me Back My Past (vol.1)', as well as his lengthy career.
Short Stories' frontman Steve Miles speaks to John Clarkson about his new band European Sun, which he has formed with Amelia Fletcher and Rob Pursey from Heavenly, Tender Trap and the Catenary Wires, and their eponymous debut album.


It's Immaterial
My Darling Clementine
I Like Trains
Cow Pie Productions

With photos from Darren Aston, John Clarkson speaks to It's Immaterial vocalist John Campbell about the Liverpudlian indie pop band's third album 'House for Sale', which they began work on almost thirty years ago but have only recently completed.
Michael Weston King from Americana group My Darling Clementine talks to John Clarkson about their latest project in which they have re-interpreted across three EPs songs from Elvis Costello's catalogue.
John Clarkson talks to David Martin, the vocalist and guitarist with brooding Leeds band I Like Trains, about 'Kompromat', their first album in eight years, which examines the present political situation and the manipulation of reality by politicians.
John Clarkson speaks to London businessman and music fan Patrick Hart about his role in the relaunch of the influential country label Cow Pie Productions almost forty years after it closed.


Profiles


Big Gold Dreams


John Clarkson examines new five-CD box set 'Big Gold Dreams', which documents Scottish punk and independent music between 1977 and 1989, and proves to be the definitive account of a definitive era.




Doug Hoekstra
Anthony Strutt
Mary O'Meara
Mary O'Meara

John Clarkson reflectson 'Unopened'. the debut poetry collection of Nashville-based singer-songwriter Doug Hoekstra.
Editor John Clarkson reflects on the music writing and his own friendship with our long-term writer Anthony Strutt, who died on March 25th after a lengthy battle with cancer.
John Clarkson pays tribute to our writer and his friend Mary O'Meara who died in December.
Pennyblackmusic writer Mary O'Meara, who has previously published ‘Between the Lines: A History of Haven’, a 2012 music biography and personal memoir about 90s indie/alternative band Haven, speaks to John Clarkson about her debut novel, 'A Certain Kind Of Light'.


Live Reviews





Echo And The Bunnymen
Damned
New International

John Clarkson at the Usher Hall in Edinburgh watches Echo and The Bunnymen play a gripping set which finds them reinterpreting for a new album their back catalogue with a strings section.
John Clarkson at the Hydro in Glasgow watches punk legends the Damned in a set in support of the Hollywood Vampires play a set of their classic singles and songs.
John Clarkson watches semi-orchestral Glasgow/Edinburgh band A New International at the Traverse Theatre in Edinburgh preview a set of songs that they are collaborating on for a pop opera and theatre production which will tour nationally next year.


Favourite Albums




Ian Dury
Hipsway
Godfathers

In our Re:View section John Clarkson examines an impressive three CD Ian Dury retrospective.
John Clarkson finds that Scottish dance/rock act Hipsway's 1986 eponymous debut album, which has just been released in a double CD thirtieth anniversary edition, remains substantial
John Clarkson examines South London-formed alternative rock band the Godfathers' eponymous and rarely heard 1993 album, which is about to be re-released for its twentieth anniversary in a double CD edition


Features



Who

John Clarkson


In 'The Image That Made Me Weep' John Clarkson reflects on a photograph of The Who taken backstage after their performance at Live Aid.
In our new series 'Tickets Rewind', in which our writers look back at their old concert tickets and the stories associated with them, our Editor John Clarkson reflects on some of his favourite gigs.



Willard Grant Conspiracy
Lou Reed
Baptiste
Miscellaneous

In 'Ten Songs That Made Me Love...' John Clarkson pays tribute to Robert Fisher from the Willard Grant Conspiracy, who died at the age of 59 in February and who we interviewed many times and headlined our Bands Nights on four occasions
John Clarkson writes of ten of his favourite songs in the solo career of the late Lou Reed
In our 'Soundtrack of Our Lives' column, in which our writers describe the personal impact of music upon them, John Clarkson writes about hearing in 2000 London-based indie band Baptiste's first two singles, 'A New Career in a New Town' and 'The Quiet Times'
Pennyblackmusic photographer-in-residence Matt Williams’ latest photographic exhibition, ‘Shield Your Eyes, Shield Your Pies’, opens at the West End in Centre in Aldershot on May 7th and closes on May 30th. Find out more about it here.


Reviews



Launchers
Morton Valence
Swansea Sound
That Will Be Lunch

Upbeat and hopeful new single from West London nine-piece reggae/ska act The Launchers
Unusual and obscure album from London 'urban country' duo Morton Valence, which, originally released under the alias of Black Angel Drifter, is now being reissued on vinyl under their own name
Fine debut single from new indie supergroup Swansea Sound, which includes Heavenly and Tender Trap'S Amelia Fletcher and Rob Pursey
Offbeat but unique and endearing cover of classic 1976 hit by That Will Be Lunch, the project of electronic solo musician Alvin Spetz


Waterboys
Eight Rounds Rapid
Fabulous Artisans
Mark Eitzel

Imaginative and literate latest from the Waterboys which proves to be an album of contrasts
Southend’s thuggy rhythm and blues kings Eight Rounds Rapid shine on their third album
Excellent first single in over five years from harmonic Scottish duo the Fabulous Artisans
First-rate vinyl reissue of Mark Eitzel's controversial eighth solo album which was recorded with a group of Greek traditional musicians


A Different Thread
Godfathers
Strokes
Cathode Ray

Hauntingly beautiful but melancholic new EP from 'British Americana' duo A Different Thread
First-rate double A-sided single in a new line-up from alternative rock band the Godfathers, released to coincide with their 35th anniversary
Flawed sixth album and first album in seven years from much acclaimed New York band the Strokes
Fabulous third album from Edinburgh-based alt. rock band the Cathode Ray which merges punk and post-punk with pop, psychedelia, glam rock, disco, folk and reggae


Vinny Peculiar
Fariña
Roy Moller and The Chain Pier Group
St Christopher Medal

Irreverent and frequently hilarious but also thought-provoking new album from singer-songwriter Vinny Peculiar about the current political landscape
Low-key but evocative return from trio Fariña with tape-only release, the soundtrack to member Mark Brend's debut novel
Fine return after a long absence from Scottish singer-songwriter Roy Moller with his new band, the Chain Pier Group
Evocative and versatile Americana on second album from Scottish act St. Christopher Medal


Raf and O
STOOR
Duncan Lloyd
Lonna Kelley

Haunting and compelling fourth album from unconventional South London-based electro-acoustic duo Raf and O
Challenging but compelling and distinctive second album from Dundee-based alternative rock group STOOR
Enjoyable third solo album from Maximo Park guitarist Duncan Lloyd upon which he experiments with an orchestral pop sound
Mournful but compelling seven inch vinyl only single from Arizonian singer-songwriter and Giant Sand member Lonna Kelley


Mutant Vinyl
Oldfield Youth Club
Made in Minsk
Morton Valence

Emotive hybrid of electronica, jazz, dub and reggae on debut album from Mutant Vinyl, the project of London-based musician Edwin Pope
First-rate download single from Oldfield Youth Club, the new band of the Bitter Springs' Simon Rivers which finds him reunited with his old bandmates
Challenging and unpredictable debut single from London-based alternative rock act Made in Minsk
Understated folk pop-influenced sixth album from South London band Morton Valence which finds them escaping from reality






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