The fifth month has delivered five firm favourites as we look back at the best that May had to offer
Whilst Billie went Vogue in the UK, Ingenuity went rogue on Mars. Little Mix became the first all female group to pick up a BRIT award for Best Group and Taylor Swift became the first woman recipient of a BRIT Icon award. Both Ariana Grande and the PM, Boris Johnson, got married, thankfully not to each other. Chelsea FC won the European Champions League title beating Manchester City and the UK's James Newman pulled off a theoretical impossibility by scoring nul points and losing to all other Eurovision entries. Blossoms, The Lathums and Zuzu successfully entertained 5,000 fans at Sefton Park as part of the Government's national Events Research Programme (ERP) and a technical hitch had Emily Eavis say she was "so sorry" after the Glastonbury live-stream event (initially) failed. May has been quite an eventful and fruitful month and these are our top five musical highlights to accompany the big news stories.
Olivia Rodrigo - SOUR.
As well as May Day, Star Wars Day, British Sandwich Week and The FA Cup Final, May also has some very promising new releases to look forward to.
As 'normal life' seems to be a few steps closer, as the first experimental music events take place, and as everyone gears up for a summer of festivals and fun, we take a look ahead at the new releases due out this May. If all goes to plan and the recent warehouse club-night, fronted by Fatboy Slim and The Blessed Madonna, and the sold out 5,000 strong Blossoms gig, both in Liverpool, work as a pilot to enable further events then we should be in for a much brighter summer than last year. The lack of any real 'live' music hasn't meant that we haven't been treated to some musical magic this year. We've already had some wonderful releases from Girl In Red, Justin Bieber, Olivia Rodrigo, Foo Fighters, The Pretty Reckless and a whole host of others, but there are many more on the horizon. Little Simz has an album due out in September, John Grant releases his latest in July, Lana Del Rey drops her second album of the year on Independence Day and Billie Eilish is set to release her second album three weeks later. Ahead of them all though we have some great records due out in May. Here are our top 5.
Gary Numan - Intruder.
He released a statement after his tour bus killed a pedestrian.
Gary Numan was left shellshocked when his tour bus struck and killed an elderly pedestrian in Ohio this week, and as a result cancelled his show that he was to perform that very night. Investigations are ongoing, though the driver of the vehicle is not facing charges at this time.
Gary Numan performing live
The 60-year-old synthpop legend was forced to reschedule his show which was due to take place at House Of Blues in Cleveland yesterday (September 24th 2018), after his tour bus accidentally hit a 91-year-old on a crossing while making a right turn. He released a statement on social media to address the incident.
Continue reading: Gary Numan Caught Up In Tour Bus Road Tragedy
'The Pleasure Principle' was released on this day (September 7th) in 1979.
Today marks the 39th anniversary of Gary Numan's debut studio album 'The Pleasure Principle'; a synth-pop masterpiece released via the independent label Beggars Banquet. And yes, this is our way of hinting for a world tour for the 40th anniversary next year.
Gary Numan - The Pleasure Principle
'The Pleasure Principle' came just six months after 'Replicas', the second and last studio album from his new wave band Tubeway Army and similarly ended up peaking at number one on the UK charts, to no-one's surprise. Gary Numan would also achieve the same feat a year later with 'Telekon', but it's safe to say that this first release was where his music career peaked.
Gary Numan admits it is ''ironic'' that he has loads of his own God-related lyrics tattooed on himself because he is not religious.
Gary Numan has loads of his God-related lyrics tattooed on himself - despite not being religious.
The 59-year-old singer loves to be reminded of his songs on a daily basis by having the words inked on his body, but admits it is ''ironic'' that he has such religious writing permanently etched on himself because he doesn't follow a religion.
He said: ''I've got loads of lyrics. This one is a line from a song: 'If God calls your name, I will die for you.' Which is written on Gemma's wedding ring. This one is 'Until God takes me away'. Which is slightly ironic, in that I'm not religious. I don't believe in it, but they're all God-driven lyrics, every one of them.
Continue reading: Gary Numan's 'ironic' Religious Tattoos
Inspired by a world in turmoil, Gary Numan unveils his new album this Fall.
Gary Numan returns with a spectacular new album set in a post-apocalyptic future. Entitled 'Savage: Songs From A Broken World', it arrives this Fall ahead of his European tour dates and is announced alongside the release of his new single 'My Name Is Ruin'.
Gary Numan to unveil 'Savage: Songs from a Broken World'
Inspired by the current political situation in the US, 'Savage...' is Gary Numan's 22nd album and first effort since 2013's 'Splinter (Songs From A Broken Mind)'. It explores a world ravaged by global warming, with technology erased and food and water difficult to come by. It's every man for himself, and will cultures have come together out of necessity, the humanity has disappeared from communities.
Shot on the front of Replicas, Gary Numan look much like the embodiment of Bron Helstrom, the former male prostitute of Samuel R. Delaney's pan-cultural science fiction novel Triton. Hair peroxide blond and clad entirely in black, the man born Gary Webb stares into the middle distance in a room illuminated by a single, naked light bulb. Out of the window is The Park, an area much like the lawless free zones a citizen can choose to live in as part of Delaney's ultra-liberal futuristic society.
Both the image and Helstrom's character are highly ambiguous, avatars of a 1970's in which computers and the cold war were melding science fact, in which paranoia and the boundaries of sexuality, personal politics and our mechanistic existences began to dissolve. A dystopianly themed concept album, in musical terms Replicas came heavily influenced by Low-era Bowie and perhaps less fashionably, the chugging guitars of glam. Numan had discovered synthesizers by accident during its recording process and experienced a career changing epiphany in the process, one which gives the only Tubeway Army album some odd juxtapositions. On songs like Praying To The Aliens, The Machman and You Are In My Vision for example the emphasis is on arty, post-punk atmospheres, the singer's atonal voice providing a monotone cyborg appliqué.
The master stroke however came in bringing the doom-soaked Moogs to the forefront, either on filmic instrumentals such as I Nearly Married A Human or When Machines Rock, but especially in the claustrophobic Down In The Park, or the album's focal point Are Friends Electric. A surprise number one at the time, the latter was both maudlin and authoritarian, Numan forlornly seeking empathetic love from an emotionless machine, vulnerable flesh and blood in a world of hard wired logic.
Expect some extraordinary upcoming talent from one of the festival's most diverse showcases.
Austin's 2015 SXSW Festival draws ever nearer, with a line-up already rich in upcoming talent and vibrant diversity. There's something for everyone at this iconic citywide musical celebration, and nothing encompasses that more than Hype Machine's Hype Hotel Presented by Feed the Beat spot.
Hype Hotel is set to return to SXSW for 2015
Now heading into its fourth year, we can expect Hype Hotel to be full of yet more talented new bands and artists for 2015. Selected by a variety of different music blogs, the line-up is awash with the very best of all genres including indie, rock, pop, electronic, rap and R&B, who entertain fans of different ages and cultures for five days during the event, which this year takes place from March 17th to 22nd.
The cancelled festival is the perfect example of the potential pitfalls of crowdfunding campaigns.
Crowdfunding has altered the landscape of contemporary culture, overwhelmingly for the better. No longer are fans subject to the whims of record labels and their increasingly focussed budget. For fans, the power is in their hands and they can directly contribute to ventures of their favourite acts bands, fund the continuation of their best-loved shows and play their part in the investment of innovative technologies. The successes are widespread- from Amanda Palmer’s well reported project to fund a new record, tour and book to the Veronica Mars movie project and Neil Young’s Pono high quality music player, crowdfunding is increasingly the source of cultural revolution.
Marilyn Manson pulled out of the event after cancellation rumours took hold.
But for every project that far exceeds its stated aims, there’s one that fall flat on its face. Former teen TV star Melissa Joan Hart raised a paltry $51,000 out of her stated aim of $2 million for a romantic comedy called Darci’s Walk Of Shame. In contrast, Kristen Bell’s Veronica Mars project reached its $2 million target in just 12 hours. And now another aborted project can be added to the list of abject crowdfunding failures. The three day event, which was due take place on August 15-17th in Kettering, sold a not too shabby amount of tickets- 7,500- but this was far from enough to make the event financially viable. What’s more, only £61,000 of a projected £1.2 million was raised through Kickstarter, far from enough to pay for headliners Marilyn Manson and Gary Numan. The problems that befell the event highlight the very facts that drive a crowdfunding project into the ground.
Continue reading: Where Did It All Go Wrong For Alt-Fest's Crowdfunding Campaign?
Gary Numan - Gemma Numan and Gary Numan Friday 27th July 2012 in good spirits as they return to their Manchester hotel
Gary Numan - Gary Numan and his wife Gemma Numan Wednesday 25th July 2012 outside their hotel in Manchester
Date of birth
8th March, 1958