It’s oh so cultural: the sharpest sounds of autumn 2016


A digitally decadent celebration of Björk’s 20-year career arrives in the capital this September. Incorporating performance, film and installations, the exhibition explores the extensive output created by the Icelandic artist, whose boundary-pushing projects are always driven by a fascination with nature, technology, sex and heartache. The exhibition will feature previously unseen work and interactive displays – including her 360-degree virtual-reality video for Stonemilker, in which the audience come face to face with the musician on a stormy-skied beach. Midway through the run come two London shows, at the Royal Albert Hall on 21 September and Hammersmith Apollo on 24 September. •1 September to 23 October, Somerset House, London.

Fresh from launching a vinyl record into space, Jack White compiles a self-explanatory career-spanning selection that points up his oeuvre’s debt to traditional American music, including a previously unreleased White Stripes track, solo material, tracks by the Raconteurs, his contributions to the soundtrack of Cold Mountain and a song he wrote for a Coca-Cola advert. It’s available on CD and vinyl, but there should be an option for the committed fan, whereby a medicine show parks its wagon outside your house and an itinerant musician called Peg Leg Sam sings it all to you. •9 September, Third Man Records/XL.

MIA’s recorded output has been of variable quality in recent years, but it’s never less than interesting. Looking at the supporting cast she has assembled for her fifth album, there seems no reason to doubt AIM is going to be interesting as well: Zayn Malik of One Direction has been drawn into the fold, alongside Skrillex, long-term sideman Diplo and Kanye West collaborator Hit-Boy. But ultimately, it’s about her: as evidenced by the handful of tracks she’s already teased, there is still no one that sounds remotely like her.•9 September, Polydor.

It’s years – decades – since Billy Joel appeared in the upper echelons of the charts, but he’s spent the time diligently presenting himself as the hardest-working arena rocker in the world. For the past three years, he has played once a month at the 18,000-capacity Madison Square Garden in New York. Now he’s proving his appeal still crosses the Atlantic, with a sellout stadium show at Wembley stadium.•10 September, Wembley stadium, London.

The 24th London jazz festival brings a ten-day cavalcade of jazz music’s risen and rising stars in November. Saxophone master Wayne Shorter, also one of jazz’s great composers, appears with his empathic quartet, Madeleine Peyroux pays tribute to songwriters from Sister Rosetta Tharpe to Tom Waits and Robert Glasper, Joshua Redman with Brad Mehldau, Tord Gustavsen, Andy Sheppard celebrating Gil Evans, and vocal innovator Norma Winstone celebrating her 75th, are just a few of the tantalising prospects on the 300-gig bill.•11-20 November, Various venues.

In recent years, the Mercury prize shortlist has shown a weird propensity to make the British music scenes that it’s supposed to represent look substantially less vibrant than they are, which may be one of the reasons public interest seems to have declined. This year, the shortlist is hard to pick holes in: it’s musically broader and more diverse than before, the stuff that’s on it is of an unerringly high quality. At the time of writing, David Bowie’s Blackstar is bookies’ favourite, but the bookies are notoriously bad at picking Mercury winners: frankly, the field looks completely open.•15 September, 9pm, BBC4.

A longstanding summer fixture in Brooklyn, the most multicultural festival in the US arrives in London for a day. The lineup at the main event in Alexandra Palace is impressively diverse, with Grace Jones, Laura Mvula, Lady Leshurr, MNEK, metal-influenced rappers HO99o9, punk trio Skinny Girl Diet, Young Fathers, Benjamin Booker and acclaimed heavy-psych rockers Vodun among the acts. Plus there are other events planned elsewhere in the capital, including a comedy show, film screenings and club nights. •24 September, Alexandra Palace, London.

The Boss has been writing his autobiography since 2009, and the hope has to be that rock’s great communicator will be a little less obtuse than his fellow greats Bob Dylan and Neil Young were in their own memoirs, just as his own shows tend to be rather more straightforwardly celebratory than theirs. In his foreword to the book, Springsteen has promised it will answer two questions he’s often asked: how and why he does what he does. •27 September, Simon & Schuster.

The third Bon Iver album seems a long way indeed from Justin Vernon recording For Emma, Forever Ago alone in a cabin in Wisconsin. It arrives wrapped in symbol-rich album artwork, bearing track titles inspired by the alternative alphabet, leet: best of luck shouting out for 10 d E A T h b R E a s T ? ? at a forthcoming gig. There’s a guest appearance from Kanye West, returning the favour for Vernon’s umpteen collaborations on the rapper’s recent albums, while the first two tracks released to the internet pitched avant-garde electronics against harmony vocals. •30 September, Jagjaguwar.

The first album by Pixies since they reunited, 2014’s Indie Cindy, met with a slightly underwhelming critical response. Yet it seems to have reinvigorated the band – now with Paz Lenchantin taking over Kim Deal’s role as bassist and supplier of contrasting female vocals – who are rolling out a whole new album rather than packaging together three EPs, as they did for Indie Cindy. •30 September, Pias.

Until this summer, the electronic pioneer hadn’t played live in the UK for five years: following a handful of festival appearances, he takes to the arenas in support of his two-volume album of collaborations, Electronica. His performances might be scaled down a little from the days when every live event he played seemed to attract record-breaking crowds, but judging by the videos of his appearances at Sónar and Bluedot earlier this summer, his show is still a pretty spectacular son-et-lumière event.•UK tour starts at Cardiff Motorpoint Arena on 4 October, runs till till 14 October.

Fresh from at its acclaimed Edinburgh festival premiere, Martin Green’s powerful and affecting new show tells stories of migration through songs and striking animation (created by Bafta-winning duo whiterobot). Green’s musical collaborators include Anais Mitchell and Aidan Moffat, and his band is fronted by Adam Holmes and Becky Unthank. It’s part folk-opera, part installation, part gig and part theatre piece. •UK tour starts at Cambridge Junction on 22 Octover, and runs until 2 November.

The last time the Guardian reviewed a Mykki Blanco show, it was certainly an experience. Blanco wore a padded bra, fed grapes to the crowd and partook in some stylish vogueing. The California-born rapper is one of several artists who have spent the past few years challenging hip-hop norms, bringing queer politics and drag culture to a genre not always welcoming of the LGBT community, while transforming venues into sweaty, heaving masses at the same time. This tour coincides with the release of debut album proper, Mykki.•UK tour starts at Patterns, Brighton, 4 October, runs till 8 October.

It’s the last chance for middle-aged former ravers-cum-continental sophisticates to relive their halcyon days, when Saint Etienne perform their debut album, Foxbase Alpha, in full for what is, apparently, the final time. Its melange of samples, melodies, and simultaneous futurism and nostalgia still sounds like a unique contribution to British pop culture. •5 October, Heaven, London.

With a novel, several plays and the odd poetry prize all fighting for page space on her CV, you wonder quite how Kate Tempest found time to make another hip-hop record. Yet Let Them Eat Chaos is just that, the follow-up to 2014’s Mercury-nominated Everybody Down. Like the south Londoner’s debut, Let Them Eat Chaos is produced by Dan Carey and promises more dazzling wordplay, a dash of politics and the odd 10/10 song title – Ketamine for Breakfast is our current favourite.•7 October, Fiction.

Karen Marie Ørsted’s leftfield synthpop always put her slightly on the artier side of many of her Scandipop peers, but recent work like Final Song and Major Lazer collaboration Lean On – the most streamed track in Spotify’s history – suggests she’s embracing a more mainstream sound. This tour will reveal what big pop tricks the Danish singer learned while playing to huge crowds with Diplo and co. •UK tour starts at Brighton Concorde 2 on 11 October, runs till 22 October.

In the mood for an hour and a bit of a bloke telling you, lyrically, about how bloody awful things are? Aidan Moffat and Malcolm Middleton have reunited for four shows this autumn, and it’s hugely unlikely they will have transformed into party-hearty dude rockers. Think of them instead as the Sleaford Mods for people who want to hear instruments and singing, instead of beats and shouting.•Touring UK 13-16 October.

Two giants of today’s jazz – both awesome instrumentalists, and artists who can’t help thinking outside the box – are the American saxophonist Joe Lovano, and Cuban pianist Chucho Valdes. Lovano has enthrallingly built on a jazz-sax legacy running from Charlie Parker to Ornette Coleman and Wayne Shorter; Valdes stunningly fuses jazz and classical techniques, and put the Cuban jazz scene on the world map in the 1970s with his groundbreaking Irakere band. The pair join forces in this new quintet fuelled by Cuba’s vivid rhythms.

•20-21 October, Ronnie Scott’s, London.

Not many rap shows double up as personal-hygiene classes, but Lady Leshurr likes to do things differently – her punchline-loaded freestyles covering most aspects of grooming etiquette, from reminders to change your panties to lessons on fighting bad breath (I can’t believe the cheek / Some girls wake up and don’t even brush their teeth!). The exciting Birmingham MC will no doubt bring bags of energy and charisma to these dates – along with her freshmint toothpaste. •UK tour starts at Bestival, Isle of Wight, 8-11 September, runs till 30 October.

The title does not, as the innocently minded might assume, relate to a female-friendly forestry club. Instead, Swedish pop star Tove Lo has written her second album about empowerment, bravery and, most importantly, the female hard-on – subjects elevated by booming, synthetic sounds and delivered with the same candid storytelling that defined her platinum-selling debut, Queen of the Clouds. Hedonistic, honest, hybridised pop – the very epitome of modern chart music. •28 October, Polydor.

There was a time when Pink Floyd appeared to be displaying their traditional English reserve when it came to the matter of trawling the vaults for unreleased material: their peers did it, they did not. They’re certainly making up for that now: here are 27 CDs and Blu-ray discs, containing pretty much everything a Floyd obsessive might want to hear or see from the years before The Dark Side of the Moon. Most attention is bound to be attracted by the previously unreleased recordings from the Syd Barrett era, but the whole thing looks like a fascinating treasure trove for diehard fans. •11 November, Pink Floyd Records.

Thus far, 2016 has proved quite a year for Chancelor Bennett. He co-wrote four tracks on Kanye West’s The Life of Pablo – West held him to be responsible for the delays in the album’s release – while his third mixtape Coloring Book, a noticeably more coherent record than West’s, became the first album in US history to chart on streams alone; furthermore, its Top 10 success forced America’s Recording Academy to change the rules of the Grammy awards to make streaming-only releases eligible for nomination. He plays three UK shows. •At Manchester Academy, 19 & 26 November; Brixton Academy, London, 20 & 22 November.

A brilliant deviation from the average rockstar narrative of tour excess and indulgence, Against Me! founder and frontwoman Laura Jane Grace’s memoir tells the story of the punk artist’s musical ventures and struggles with identity and addiction. Written with Noisey editor Dan Ozzi, Tranny: Confessions of Punk Rock’s Most Infamous Anarchist Sellout draws from the pages of journal entries Grace has kept since her childhood, beginning with her upbringing in Georgia, and documenting her experience of dysphoria, coming out as transgender in 2012, and other seismic life events, all of which have been channelled through her music. •24 November, Hachette Books.

News Source TheGuardianNews

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