Music

The Genius Of… Paranoid by Black Sabbath

With a 50th anniversary deluxe boxset about to hit the shelves, we look back at the dystopian visions, bludgeoning riffs and satanic myths behind one of the most influential rock albums ever made.

The Big Listen: IDLES – Ultra Mono

A third album in four years sees IDLES sharpen both their sound and their knives for an uncompromising attack on austerity, political incompetence and the patriarchy. There’s a lot more resistance than joy here.

The Genius Of… Automatic For The People by REM

REM’s eighth album may not have been the strident mainstream rock record many expected as a follow-up to 1991’s breakthrough Out Of Time, but it’s a refined, multifaceted masterwork that pointed the way for a generation of alternative guitar bands.

The Genius Of… The Velvet Underground & Nico by The Velvet Underground

An album that spawned entire genres, influenced countless bands and altered the course of rock ’n’ roll history has taken its deserved place in the hall of fame. But its guitar-fuelled soundscape still sounds just as avant-garde and dangerous over 50 years on from its release.

The Genius Of… Is This It by The Strokes

Released into a barren musical landscape still suffering from a Britpop hangover, The Strokes' debut album was an exhilarating, razor-sharp distillation of New York's musical heritage that changed everything. Do believe the hype.

The Big Listen: Bill Callahan – Gold Record

Newly settled in domestic contentment, Bill Callahan produced one of his strongest albums to date in 2019’s Shepherd In A Sheepskin Vest. Just a year later, this masterful raconteur returns with 10 hit singles new and old.
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