Will anyone ever forget the year 2016?
2016 has been a strange year. Starting off with the death of David Bowie (pictured below) and ending with nobody in the world quite sure what is going it has been a constant journey of ups and downs.
David Bowie seen in the moving video for Lazarus
But still, there has been some excellent music videos created to match this state of confusion; from Bowie to Anohni, there has always been a constant source of inspiration available in the ever-changing climate. Here we do a recap of our favourite videos of the year, good luck 2017 in trying to match some of these...
Continue reading: Top 10 Music Videos Of 2016
2016 has been overshadowed by bad news, both politically and for the music industry itself.
Yet the shifting social landscape and loss of musical icons doesn't seem to have galvanised any one artistic movement in response, surely that's on the horizon for 2017. But while this annus horribilis may not be remembered for a particular genre or artist capturing the cultural zeitgeist, it did reinforce the simple point that the concept of an album is not dead yet. From Bowie and Cohen quite brilliantly using the format as a last will and testament, Beyonce's lavish visual album for Lemonade, to Kanye and Frank Ocean bypassing some methods of traditional distribution, it's clear that the digital age of single song downloads hasn't killed the album as an artistic statement. Vinyl has helped to massively bolster sales of physical products too, emphasising the artistic merits of the album beyond simply the music on the record.
With that in mind, many well-established artists delivered records vying for position with their best work. Bands such as Weezer, Green Day, Biffy Clyro, and Against Me! may not be making many end of year top ten lists, but their output in 2016 has been impressively solid. Even Metallica returned with a record that lived up to its hype. Elsewhere other artists produced records that at an earlier point in the year would certainly have made my list; Ray LaMontagne, Brian Fallon, Iggy Pop, Shearwater, Wye Oak, A Tribe Called Quest, Bob Mould, PJ Harvey, Joseph Arthur, and St. Paul & The Broken Bones, all comfortably fit into that category. Of particular note was the album, which kept appearing on my list and then just falling frustratingly into a lower position. Underworld's Barbara Barbara, We Face A Shining Future is a glorious album. It's two men at a very different point in their lives using the music of their youth to paint a portrait of life post 50, and the result is uplifting and hopeful in a way that many other albums weren't this year. I'm delighted that Underworld has picked up a Grammy nomination for such a great record.
One final mention before sharing my ten favourite records of 2016 is for Jimmy Broomfield. Performing under the name Heart Of Oak, his debut EP, aptly titled EP 1, was released this year. It's a collection of songs that are deeply personal and wonderfully intimate with their bare bones performances. His song-writing is both clever and witty and if you're looking for some home-grown talent with a promising future you need look no further than Heart Of Oak's website.
Continue reading: Jim Pusey's Top Ten Albums Of 2016
Whilst 2016 has been too full of tragedy and sad loss it has also undoubtedly been a bumper year in terms of album releases.
There is no way to aptly mark the passing of some of the very best artists of any generation but in amongst the untimely deaths has come some inspirational and ground breaking music.
My albums are all ones I have enjoyed immensely and continue to play. Whilst Radiohead, M.I.A, Peter Doherty and many others may have missed the cut it wasn't really a difficult choice this year. It may not be all that eclectic but there are some great albums in there. Nick Cave's Skeleton Tree is not only this years best album but also an album that is rapidly becoming one of my all time favourites, it's just so good.
Continue reading: Andrew Lockwood's Top Ten Albums Of 2016
2016 has been an eventful year for sure
A number of historic moments happened with Brexit, the US election and the absurd amount of tragic deaths of some of the most significant figures in the arts. However, what 2016 will also one day be looked back on is an incredible year for music.
This list wasn't easy to compile, and is just a glance at the amount of excellent music 2016 has had to offer. There's been fascinating hip-hop, highly oddball experimental music, refreshing pop music, plenty of punishing hardcore/metal/noise and inspiring passion from DIY scenes. There's also been a great number of emerging artists, displaying much potential with singles, EP's and captivating performances, where hopefully we'll see them put out records soon which will make 2017 a rich year for music. Shout outs in particular to Iglooghost, Yonaka, Mssingno, Miles Mosley and Kai Whiston, be sure to keep an eye on them.
Here we are though, 2016's 10 finest records in my opinion, that display endless possibilities in this thing we call music.
Continue reading: Max Cussons’ Top Ten Albums Of 2016
The late singer just couldn’t commit to the trilogy.
There have always been rumours that David Bowie was nearly in Lord of the Rings, but now we have confirmation from one of the trilogy’s casting directors.
Speaking to the Huffington Post, casting director Amy Hubbard confirmed that it was David Bowie who director Peter Jackson originally wanted to play Gandalf, but the singer was sadly too busy.
David Bowie could have been Gandalf in LOTR
Continue reading: David Bowie Was Just Too Busy To Play Gandalf In 'Lord Of The Rings'
The flat at Hauptstrasse 155 was where Bowie and Iggy lived between 1976 and 1978 in the city, which inspired the so-called 'Berlin trilogy' albums.
Forty years after he briefly lived in the city and was inspired to make his famous ‘Berlin trilogy’ of albums in the late ‘70s, the German capital has unveiled a new commemorative plaque outside the home he shared with fellow star Iggy Pop.
On Monday (August 22nd), traffic was at a standstill on Hauptstrasse 155 in West Berlin’s Schöneberg district as the plaque was revealed outside the flat where Bowie and Iggy lived between late 1976 and 1978.
Costing a reported £2,900 and made of bone china, the memorial quotes Bowie’s iconic hit “Heroes”, the song inspired by the couple kissing by the Berlin Wall that Bowie spied from a window at the Hansa recording studio in Kreuzberg. The decision to place the memorial was made by the senate, notable because it usually requires a five-year waiting period to make sure the deceased figure being memorialised is truly historically significant.
Continue reading: Berlin House Where David Bowie And Iggy Pop Lived Marked By Plaque
She's definitely the best choice to pay tribute.
Lady GaGa is decidedly the best person for the job of paying tribute to the late musical legend David Bowie. As such, she will honour the 'Life On Mars' singer with a dedicatory performance at this year's Grammy awards. And, whether you love or hate her, you can't deny that Gaga has had Bowie written all over pretty much every crazy outfit she's ever worn.
Here's just a few of the most Bowie-esque get-ups the 'Applause' singer has been spotted in over the years:
Continue reading: Lady Gaga: Her Most David Bowie-esque Looks [Pictures]
He names 'Under Pressure' as his first track on the Radio 4 show.
Microsoft founder Bill Gates lays down a tribute for the late David Bowie on BBC Radio 4's Desert Island Discs, where he unveiled his top eight songs to Kirsty Young. He's chosen some serious classics as his castaway must-haves, as well as a nod to modern pop culture and musical theatre.
Bill Gates unveils his Desert Island Discs
Following Bowie's sudden death from cancer on January 10th 2016, it's only natural that music fans everywhere have added a hit from the Starman himself to their own Desert Island playlist. For Gates, it's Bowie's collaboration with Queen that serves as his first choice; 'Under Pressure', his UK number one from 1981 that featured on Queen's tenth album 'Hot Space'.
Continue reading: Bill Gates Honours David Bowie On Desert Island Discs
Has Kanye West come to take Bowie's place?
There are way too many conspiracy theories out there surrounding the death of David Bowie, the craziest of which suggesting that he is an alien who has simply returned to his home planet having brough the music of his people to the Earth. Sure, he has that cool eye thing going for him, but we're pretty sure he's human.
David Bowie has had conspiracy theorists going crazy
Then there's some theories that are a little spookier, such as the idea that he is in fact the John the Baptist of the music industry and has made various crazy predictions about the rise of Kanye West through his lyrics. It all started with a Blogspot page in 2007, and it was recently reopened in a Reddit thread. Explore the evidence yourself, and see if you believe.
Continue reading: David Bowie: The Craziest Conspiracy Theories Following His Death
One of music's most innovative artists leaves unforgettable legacy.
The world reacts with shock and grief as rock legend David Bowie is pronounced dead at aged 69, just two days following the release of his critically acclaimed 25th studio album 'Blackstar'. It might be one of the saddest events in musical history, but no-one can deny that he departed this world with style.
David Bowie has died aged 69
Following an 18-month battle with cancer, Bowie bowed out of the physical world yesterday (January 10th 2016) having just celebrated his 69th birthday. The androgynous 'Life On Mars' hitmaker - known sometimes as Starman and Ziggy Stardust after his songs of the same name - was in the midst of promoting his eagerly anticipated latest album 'Blackstar', which will no doubt mark a lasting memorial of the singer especially in the case of lead single 'Lazarus'; the first lines of which he sings, 'Look up here, I'm in heaven'.
Continue reading: 'Look Up Here, I'm In Heaven': David Bowie Dies In His Sleep Aged 69
David Bowie has created a new track for the opening credits of Sky Atlantic’s upcoming series, ‘The Last Panthers’.
David Bowie has turned his considerable talents to create a new track, entitled ‘Blackstar’, especially for the opening credits of The Last Panthers. The moody new track plays over dark opening credits which include snapshots of medieval and animal imagery as well as broken glass, smoking guns and falling bodies.
David Bowie and his wife Iman at the 2010 CFDA Fashion Awards in New York.
Finally, there's some substance to the rumours doing the rounds over the last few months that Bowie's 25th album is imminent.
David Bowie may recently have confirmed his retirement from the rigours of touring, but that isn’t stopping him from unleashing more music on the world.
A new report indicates that a new Bowie album, entitled Blackstar, is set for release in the new year. The new record will reportedly be released on January 8th 2016 – Bowie’s 69th birthday – according to a new feature in The Times on Saturday (October 24th). Little was known about the record previously, except that presumably the title track, a snippet of which recently appeared online, would feature, but now some more details have been prised from the secretive artist.
Bowie with his wife Iman in 2009
Continue reading: David Bowie Set To Release New Album 'Blackstar' In January 2016
The iconic singer’s agent has confirmed Bowie will never hit the road again.
It’s sad news for David Bowie fans who were hoping the singer would some day return to touring. While speaking at the International Festival Forum in London, Bowie’s booking agent John Giddings confirmed the singer has officially retired from touring, despite continuing to make new music.
David Bowie’s agent says he’ll never tour again.
“David [Bowie] is one of the best artists I’ve ever worked with. But every time I see him now, before I even speak to him, he goes, I’m not touring and I say, I’m not asking,” Giddings, who promotes the Isle of White Festival said.
Continue reading: David Bowie Has Retired From Touring
At a test screening for series nine, the current Doctor expressed his desire to get Bowie and Richards to put in guest appearances on the show.
Capaldi, who currently plays the timelord, made the comments during a special test screening in front of a select audience in Cardiff. They were shown the first two episodes of the forthcoming ninth series, which starts on Saturday September 19th.
With a host of high-profile names making cameo appearances in the recent past, he was asked who he’d like to see getting involved with the series. “David Bowie, he would be a very good one," he told the audience. He added he would also like to see Rolling Stones guitarist Richards “stumbling around the Tardis, knocking out a few chords.”
That’s a lot of costume ch-ch-changes…
A British University professor is undertaking what might just be the most glamorous and rock ’n’ roll academic experiment ever, to live like and dress like David Bowie for an entire year. Will Brooker, from Kingston University's film and cultural studies department in London, is acting out different parts of the pop icon’s life for the project titled ‘Forever Stardust’, beginning with late ‘60s Bowie.
A University professor is spending a year living as David Bowie.
The professor has said he wants to ‘get into the singer’s head' and will be dressing as him, acting like him and even following his various diets from the time periods.
The late Velvet Underground leader was inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame at the weekend, but Bowie is quoted as saying that one of his most poorly-received albums might actually be Reed's "greatest work".
Never one to back away from a controversial opinion, David Bowie has pretty much a unique opinion on Lou Reed’s career. Believe it or not, he reckons that the late singer’s greatest musical work was his recent collaboration project with Metallica.
Lulu, released in 2011 with the metal legends, was one of the former Velvet Underground singer’s final projects before his death in 2013. It was almost universally panned by critics and listeners who were baffled by its complexity and lyrical themes. While not as challenging as Reed’s notorious 1975 album Metal Machine Music (seriously, don’t even bother with that one), it was instantly overlooked.
Lou Reed's best work was his Metallica collaboration Lulu', according to David Bowie
Bowie played the lead role in the 1976 cult sci-fi film.
David Bowie is helping to bring The Man Who Fell to Earth to the stage, in an off-Broadway production at the New York Theatre Workshop. The play, titled Lazarus, will center on Thomas Jerome Newton, Bowie’s iconic character from the 1976 cult movie.
David Bowie is working on a new off-Broadway production
In the film, which was based on the 1963 novel by Walter Tevis, Newton is a humanoid alien who crash lands on earth looking to take water back home to his planet which is experiencing a severe drought.
Pink Floyd’s ‘The Endless River’ has become the the fastest-selling vinyl album this century.
It seems that vinyl is once again back in fashion (thanks hipsters). This year, vinyl sales in the UK have passed the one million mark for the first time since 1996, according to the Official Charts Company. Albums by veterans Pink Floyd and David Bowie have helped boost sales of the format, which achieved the one million milestone last weekend.
Pink Floyd's The Endless River has helped boost vinyl sales in the UK
Currently David Bowie’s new best of collection, Nothing Has Changed, holds the top spot on the vinyl chart replacing last week’s number one Pink Floyd’s The Endless River.
Disney are going all hipster on us and will release a cassette version of the 'Guardians of the Galaxy' soundtrack.
Disney has announced it will release Guardians of the Galaxy mixtape on cassette. Awesome Mix Vol 1 will be the studio's first cassette release in more than a decade and marks a resurgence of the medium.
Chris Pratt's character Peter Quill was given the Awesome Mixtape by his later mother
Billboard reports that the limited-edition cassette will be released on November 17, though will only be available exclusively at independent record shops. Strangely, the release will ignore the Black Friday Record Store Day, which takes place across indie record stores just 11 days later.
The full album will be out in November.
Here’s a Sunday treat for you: David Bowie has a new song out. Now this is Bowie we’re talking out, so get ready for some weird here. It’s a seven-minute jazz thing. No joke. Bowie premiered the track on Guy Garvey’s Finest Hour. Sue (Or in a Season of Crime) will feature on Bowie's upcoming compilation album Nothing Has Changed, alongside a number of his greatest hits and unreleased tracks.
A 7-minute jazz track? Why the hell not?
The story that the Jim Henson Company has been working on ‘Labyrinth 2’ has been doing the rounds on the internet for the past 24 hours, but should we start getting excited or not?
The news that there could be a sequel to 80’s cult classic Labyrinth has hit the internet hard. It’s been years since we've read so many mentions of David Bowie’s crotch and hair. But who could blame them? The idea of another Labyrinth movie really is enough to set imaginations and heart’s racing. But it's time to take a breather and ask, is it actually happening?
David Bowie starred in Labyrinth back in 1986
The story that Labyrinth 2 (and seriously, they better not call it that) was in the works all started thanks to an article in Variety about Billy Crystal joining The Jim Henson Company’s new animated project Which Witch.
Continue reading: Time To Magic Dance Again? Is ‘Labyrinth’ Really Getting A Sequel?
British cultural icon to release a new track as part of a thorough greatest hits campaign.
Legendary British rock icon David Bowie has announced the release of some more new material alongside a new greatest hits package.
David Bowie will release a new track and greatest hits package on November 17th
Having taken the world by surprise twice last year – firstly, with the quick release of The Next Day, his first album in decade, and secondly, with that album actually being really good – Bowie is set to cement his legacy still further with an expansive, career-spanning collection entitled Nothing Has Changed.
Continue reading: David Bowie Set To Release Greatest Hits Package With New Track
Susan Sarandon has detailed her romance with one Mr David Bowie.
Susan Sarandon, the Hollywood actress best known for Thelma and Louise, has detailed her relationship with David Bowie. Sarandon said the pair got together when working together on the British horror movie The Hunger.
Susan Sarandon at the Tammy premiere
"He's worth idolising. He's extraordinary. That was a really interesting period. I wasn't supposed to have kids, and I'm the oldest of nine and had mothered all of them, so I wasn't ever in a mode where I was looking to settle down and raise a family, so that definitely changes the gene pool you're dipping into," she said in an interview with The Daily Beast.
Continue reading: Susan Sarandon Details Relationship With 'Idol' David Bowie
Is David Bowie preparing a new album?
David Bowie has promised that more new music is on the way, following his surprise comeback in 2013. A statement from the musician was read out at a fundraising event for the Terrance Higgins Trust in a bar in Denmark Alley, London.
David Bowie at the Webby Awards in 2007 [Getty/Bryan Bedder]
It read: "This city is even better than the one you were in last year, so remember to dance, dance, dance. And then sit down for a minute, knit something, then get up and run all over the place. Do it. Love on ya. More music soon. David."
Continue reading: David Bowie Fan? Then We Have Some Good News
Who cleaned toilets, who killed cows, who worked at the gap? Some of these musicians had unenviable pre fame jobs…
Everybody’s got to earn a living somehow and when you're an aspiring rock star you might end up having to take a few bad jobs along the way to pay the bills. Take these 10 for example, who certainly learnt the meaning of a hard day’s work before finding fame.
Ozzy, an enemy of both bats and cows
Continue reading: From Kanye To Kurt: Musicians Who Started Out With Ordinary Jobs
'20 Feet From Stardom' is a staggering music documentary.
In the weeks leading up to the Oscars, pundits were divided about which documentary would win the big prize, most predicting The Act of Killing, the innovative, staggeringly powerful exploration of Indonesia's death squads. But anyone who had seen the background singer doc 20 Feet From Stardom knew it was probably more likely to take the award.
Darlene Love in '20 Feet From Stardom'
Not only is the film a hugely crowd-pleasing movie that leaves audiences smiling and tapping their toes in joy, but it has serious subtext as well, examining America's civil rights struggle through the eyes of musical artists. It also makes a potent statement about today's digital, auto-tuned recording industry in which non-singers make records and do their own backing vocals, but neglect to infuse their records with the passion and energy that fills the classic songs of the past few decades.
Continue reading: Why '20 Feet From Stardom' Deserved The Oscar For 'Best Documentary'
The veteran pop star waded into the Scottish independence debate.
David Bowie has been swamped by Scottish nationalists after his BRIT Awards acceptance speech last night urged the British country to not seek independence and rather "stay with us." Bowie was not present at the music awards to collect his own trophy so instead sent model Kate Moss to the stage to read out his acceptance speech.
David Bowie Incited Ire After His BRITs Acceptance Speech Urged Scotland To Stay In The UK.
At 67, Bowie became the oldest ever recipient of a BRIT when he received the British Male Artist of the Year prize last night. Bowie's friend Moss took to the stage wearing one of the pop star's Ziggy Stardust leotards from the seventies that had been tailored to fit her. Bowie's speech began in typically surreal fashion, as Kate read "In Japanese myth the rabbits from my old costume which Kate is wearing live on the moon. Kate comes Venus and I from Mars."
The three biggest acts of the Brits couldn't be more different.
David Bowie still knows how to steal the show. He proved as much during Wednesday’s Brits, without even attending the ceremony. Bowie won best British Male during the 2014 ceremony, making something of a comeback after his last win in 1984. His latest album, The Next Day, represents an musical achievement, unrivaled in the past two decades at least. Without once appearing onstage, Bowie stage-managed his first album in a decade, and managed to top the UK Album Chart and go to Number 2 on the Billboard Chart. In short, congrats to David Bowie, who, at 67, continues to win everything.
David Bowie. That is all.
In other Brit news, the winners this year were quite a diverse bunch, from Bowie to the Arctic Monkeys to One Direction. Indie quartet the Arctic Monkeys, who achieved new heights and international recognition with their 2013 album AM, unsurprisingly picked up the Brit for Best Album too. This prompted frontman Alex Turner to launch into an ever-so-slightly smug victory speech. “That rock-and-roll it just won’t go away. That rock-and-roll, it seems like it’s fading away sometimes, but it will never die,” Arctic Monkeys frontman Alex Turner said as he received the band’s second gong of the night for the Mastercard British album of the year. The Arctic Monkeys also picked up Best Group, to which Turner reacted with “There’s that fifteen quid we put on One Direction to win down the drain.” Solid burn.
Continue reading: The Brits' Split Personality: Bowie, Arctic Monkeys And 1D Rule The Show
The Brit Awards jumped right into the middle of awards season by announcing their nominees, and there are plenty of artists from all over the world up for awards.
We are again right in the middle of awards season, and that doesn't just mean the Oscars. The Brit Awards have announced their 2014 nominations, and there aren't many surprises.
Bastille performs at Koko in London
The two leading artists are, as they should be, British acts. According to MTV, Disclosure and Bastille were each nominated for four awards, but the rest of the nominations were for artists all over the world.
Continue reading: One Direction, Justin Timberlake Rack Up Brit Awards Nominations
A spooky video...with a rather low price tag.
With artists as huge as David Bowie, you'd expect that their music videos would need similarly large funds to create. Fire, nearly-nude dancers, posh cars, dazzling lighting: isn't that what makes a good music video? Apparently not. Rather than spend his Halloween partying at the Mercury Prize with all the other nominees, Bowie decided to drop a brand new music video a day earlier than expected.
"Love Is Lost? Where Did It Go?"
"We have moved the online premiere of David Bowie's latest visual back a day from November 1st as it has a 'strangely moving gothic inflected storyline perfect for Halloween,'" reads Bowie's website. Although Bowie himself was not present at the awards ceremony, 'Love Is Lost' received its world premiere at the Mercury Prize in front of big music industry figures and his peers.
Continue reading: David Bowie $12.99 Creepy Halloween Video 'Love Is Lost' Debuts [Video]
Date of birth
8th January, 1947
Date of death
10th January, 2016
Like most viewers of his documentary Mayor of the Sunset Strip, director George Hickenlooper (The...