Whilst in London for the Launch of the brand new Chord Poly we thought we’d take the opportunity to visit a place that has been on our must see list ever since Kevin and Lynn from Living Voice told us about it, and their involvement with it.

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In January 1977 John Scott paid £2.80 to see Genesis.  Tonight, nearly forty one years later, he’s paid £35 to see some Canadians pretend to be Genesis.   More »

Despite having penned the title song of Ireland’s biggest-selling album, A Woman’s Heart, and releasing more than a dozen albums over the last couple of decades, Eleanor McEvoy is still something of a well-kept secret. Over the last few years she has become increasingly appreciated in audiophile circles for the recording quality of her albums, with one hifi magazine awarding its Album Of The Year accolade to three of her releases. More »

PMC has teamed up with renowned guitar tutor, Richard Deyn, to enable The Indulgence Show visitors, with no guitar playing experience, to learn how to confidently play a riff, record it and keep the results, giving them an insight into how to make music. More »

Nordoff Robbins are a charity who use music therapy to help vulnerable people across the UK. Get Loud is Nordoff Robbins’ national awareness day on 13 September 2017, when they use the power of music to raise awareness of their life-changing music therapy services. More »

St Cuthbert’s Parish Church has seen a few things in its time: infamous body snatchers Burke and Hare were regular visitors to its churchyard, the watchtower built to protect against them and other “resurrectionists” still stands; Sir Thomas De Quincy, author of Diary Of An Opium Eater, and John Napier, inventor of the logarithm, are just two of the notables interred in the churchyard; St Cuthbert’s was also where Agatha Christie married her second husband.  I’m willing to bet though, that in all of its considerable history, tonight is the first time it has witnessed a thirty three piece brass band and a young lady with an assemblage of synthesisers. More »

In 1980, the weekly music paper Melody Maker declared Talking Heads’ Remain In Light album to be its Album Of The Year, citing its innovative African rhythmic influences as a key part of the album’s appeal.  Two years later in the summer of 1982, rival paper NME was featuring four-page articles about African bands such as King Sunny Adé And His African Beats and Orchestra Makassy who were, quite rightly, causing a bit of a stir with their respective albums Juju Music and Agwaya.  Now, some 37 years after the release of Remain In Light, London Astrobeat Orchestra have taken  Talking Heads’ back catalogue and mixed it up with the musical styles of West Africa to produce something really extraordinary. More »

It’s not easy being a support act.  You have thirty minutes to make an impression.  On a good night, ninety five percent of the people in the room won’t know who you are, will have never heard any of your songs and have probably only turned up early to secure a decent seat for the main act.  Tonight, making an impression was something that Fraser Anderson only needed to worry about for around three minutes.  From that point in, spines were tingled and hearts were touched. More »

It doesn’t seem that long ago that the idea of rock stars in their seventies seemed ridiculous; rock and roll was a young man’s (and occasional woman’s) game.  The boring old farts that punk had come to blow away in 1976 were barely in their thirties, and the punks themselves are now pensioners.  Over the last few years I’ve seen some tremendous gigs from septuagenarian rockers: Daevid Allen and Gilli Smyth in Gong, Bryan Ferry, Roy Harper, Al Stewart – all turning in performances that belie their years.     More »

Martha Wainwright is a songwriter.  Her father, Loudon Wainwright is a songwriter.  Her mother, Kate McGarrigle was a songwriter.  Her brother, Rufus Wainwright  and half-sister Lucy Wainwright Roche are songwriters.  Her aunts, Anna McGarrigle and Sloane Wainwright are songwriters. Her cousin Lily Lankin is a songwriter.  There is a picture developing here; although not so much a picture as a family album.  The Wainwright family have, in fact, recorded several family albums; writing songs with, and about, each other – often with a devastating honesty, sometimes using words as weapons to wound.  Her parents’ marriage and divorce is well-documented in song. When Martha spent a year living with her father, at a time when she was a self-confessed difficult teenager, he wrote a song called I’d Rather Be Lonely.  Martha responded with a song of her own entitled Bloody Mother Fucking Asshole. And yet, it has been said that the the only offence that can be caused in the Wainwright family is to write a poor-quality song.  Songwriting is in Martha’s bones and she is clearly her father’s daughter; she shares his smile and she does that weird kicky leg thing when she sings, just like he does.  Fortunately, she hasn’t inherited that other weird thing he does with his tongue; Rufus got that particular gene. More »

Electro pioneers Kraftwerk recently upgraded their PMC monitoring system to a 9.1 Dolby Atmos set-up so that they could compile 3-D Kraftwerk Concert, an audio/video documentary collection that was released at the end of May 2017. More »

The brilliant Scott Wainwright at this years North West Audio Show at Cranage Hall in Cheshire. Feel free to subscribe to our Hifi Pig Television You Tube channel. Full report on the show to follow shortly. 

 

Devialet, partnered with Evian Musical Encounters,have been “experimenting with bold new ways to serve the musical heritage”. They are offering a new feature for Phantom owners. More »

The first time I saw Robert Cray was on The Old Grey Whistle Test in the early 1980s. Actually, that’s not true.  The first time I saw Robert Cray was when he played bass in the soul review band Otis Knight And The Days who featured in the National Lampoon’s Animal House film that was a cult hit  several years earlier.  It would be many years before I would discover that it was Cray who played that part in the film so I don’t suppose that really counts.  Back to The Old Grey Whistle Test then.  Cray was being touted, with some justification, as the next big thing in blues guitar music.  Presenter David Hepworth joked that he was only 19 but in truth Cray was closer to 30.   Cray will be 64 in August this year but even now he could easily pass for someone 10 years younger. More »

“Sometimes it seems unimaginable that you were ever any other way” sings Al Stewart on his song Carol.  Sometimes it seems unimaginable that Stewart could have been anything other than a singer/songwriter.  Moving from Glasgow to Dorset  as a child, he went on to  buy his first guitar from future Police man Andy Summers, took guitar lessons from a teenage Robert Fripp and on moving to London, shared a flat with a little-known songwriter by the name of Paul Simon. More »

The organisers of the Rotation Garden Party got in touch to tell us about this year’s event on the 22nd of July. A musical experience on an Audiophile System, held within the grounds of the beautiful, grade 2 listed Bishton Hall. More »

Alongside their regular albums, The Unthanks have released a series of “Diversions”; albums that focus on a particular theme or style.  The latest of these is How Wild The Wind Blows – The Songs And Poems Of Molly Drake.  Molly was the mother of legendary folk-rock singer songwriter Nick Drake and actress Gabrielle Drake.  Molly wrote her songs and poems purely as a form of self-expression, they were never intended for public consumption.  However, in response to Nick Drake’s enduring popularity, a selection of her songs recorded at home by her husband in the 1940’s was released as a limited edition album.  Now, with the support and assistance of Gabrielle, The Unthanks are bringing Molly’s songs and poems to a much wider audience. More »

The High End loudspeaker manufacturer, “VOLYA GmbH”, is auctioning off luxury loudspeakers valued at EUR 30,000 (not including VAT) at the High End 2017 for a charitable cause. More »

A photo of Sinatra alongside Davis Jr and Dean Martin adorns the walls. The wallpaper is patterned with the Statue of Liberty and James Dean. Where you’d expect to see a domesticated rockabilly band or an alcoholism-riddled crooner onstage in this schlock ‘Merica-themed venue, there will soon be three of Ireland’s finest bands treading the boards underneath the cheap chandeliers. More »

Hifi Pig’s James Fleming heads up to Dublin and the salubrious surroundings that are The Workman’s Club to see and speak to Strength NIA. More »

The High End Society got in touch to let us know about some of the musical entertainment at this year’s High End Show in Munich. More »