Author: Dave Rush

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Mixed Bag: Bleeds, Deluxe Version (Roots Manuva)

Remixed and reinvigorated, or bleeding a good album dry? Roots Manuva's Bleed, redux....

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Reliable Witness. At the launch of Bleeds. (Roots Manuva)

Roots Manuva has become almost a national treasure – certainly to anyone with even the most passing interest in UK hip hop...

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Great Band, Shame About the Crowd (The Heartless Bastards)

Interview and review of The Heartless Bastards. The Borderline, London. 1st September 2015 ...

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Something of a mixed bag: Food Chain [London Afrobeat Collective]

I can hear this on an sunny afternoon whilst the crowd are still working out the kinks from the night before, but headlining material it ain’t....

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An undercurrent of groove and funk… gone dull. [Polar Bear]

Two tracks in, and the band departs to leave the irritatingly named Leafcutter John to give the audience a few minutes of meandering ambient nonsense....

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Boilersuit in a field [The Orb]

I always think of “Towers of Dub” as The Orb in microcosm. Although at around 15 minutes it’s not particularly micro, which I suppose is part of the point. But with that brilliant sample...

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Julian Bahula [African National Congress] : Interview

When Julian Bahula tells you music contains the power of revolution, that it is “a weapon for the struggle,” you believe him....

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Dr John : Ske-Dat-De-Dat

This is not offensively bad, or indeed really bad at all, but it feels like an awful waste of potential. ...

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Tricky : Adrian Thaws

Adrian Thaws, Tricky’s new album, is accessible, and at points even memorable....

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Staff Benda Bilili : Union Chapel

The music they play is infectious – danceable, catchy, beautiful to listen to. Put them in a stunning building in North London and what could go wrong?...

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Matthew Herbert : The End of Silence

When you find the press release that accompanies an album more interesting than the music itself, then you know there’s something wrong....

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Simian Mobile Disco : Delicacies

Maybe you had to be there' Dave Rush reviews Simian Mobile Disco's live album...

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Jaga Jazzist : Live with the Britten Sinfonia

A crazy band who make crazy music, then. And their latest album is suitably mental....

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Democracy and Dubai Shopping Trips ; An Academic in Africa

I would suggest that the fear of violent reprisal, or the knowledge that casting your vote made no difference because the seat had already been bought would lead some to conclude that they were not...

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London Afrobeat Collective : Floradita [Gig]

All of the musicians are superb, they’re tight as hell, and they write and play great songs. And with the number of baritone sax solos on offer, I leave a very happy man. ...

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Dobie : We Will Not Harm You

It has everything from raw beats to polished electro. It makes you want to dance and just sit down and get stoned all at the same time. It’s got a swagger to it....

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Perps and Papers: An Academic in Africa

A lot of unhappy rumbling, and us standing around trying to look as serious and threatening as we possibly could. ...

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Ultraista: Cable Club [live]

Trouble is, I’d rather see RADIOHEAD instead. And I don’t even like Radiohead....

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The Punk Syndrome/Kovasikajuttu [Film]

The reason this whole thing works is that it becomes, pretty quickly, a story about actual people, and not just ciphers for what is wrong with them, or the way that society treats them....

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Fanga & Maalem Abdullah Guinea: Fangnawa Experience

…. by the third track, the constituent elements meld into a sound that is properly danceable, and moreover, distinctive. Fangnawa Experience by Fanga & Maalem Abdullah ...

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Ben Caplan [Live]

Ben Caplan would help me get over these prejudices, or at least not think about them too much. Partly because he has a beard you could catch a badger in, but most importantly, because he’s...

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Let it Be [Theatre]

It should not be possible to make a Sgt Pepper's set look more like a Slade Christmas special...

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A Casual Bombing in Nigeria

On the 16th of June there was a bomb blast in Abuja, at the police headquarters.  At the time of writing this they had not released the figures for the number of dead yet, except to confirm that...

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On the Brink of Democracy

Nigeria is a confusing country for the stranger, and the situation only gets worse when you start looking at politics.  As such I’m not going to try and give you a nicely crafted or...

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Establishing ‘Conflict’ in the Ivory Coast

As the situation in the Ivory Coast draws to a predictably bloody conclusion, it seems worth asking– why did it take so long for the Western media to cotton on to the situation?  After...

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