There was a period of time when Arcade Fire were my favourite band in the world.
The albums Neighbourhood, Neon Bible, The Suburbs and Reflektor were exhibited to interested and not so interested friends as evidence as to why they were so brilliant. That spell has passed and I’m not alone, with many of the band’s early fans feeling the same indifference towards their newer material.
After a lot of elaborate hype and promotion including teaser trailers and cereal boxes Everything Now, the lead single from the album of the same name was just too easy to ignore.
The sheer momentum of the band will make it easy for fans to forgive or forget this underwhelming release (if they do in fact find the new material underwhelming).
With so many massive hits among the crowds of outsiders and alternatives Arcade Fire are indie royalty, and have made a huge dent in the consciences of their most loyal fans and casual festival goers for around 15 years now.
Many consider the band’s live performances akin to a religious ceremony. Arcade Fire will be converting and enlightening the masses of Glasgow in April.
Arcade Fire play the SSE Hydro in Glasgow tonight.
“Akala, Akala wherefore art thou? The black Shakespeare and the secret’s out now.”
That was the line that first introduced me to Akala a few years ago.
The England-born half-Scot half-Jamaican emerged thanks to his Shakespeare references, his Radio 1Xtra appearances including a Fire in the Booth performance and his cerebral take on hip-hop that is all too often found missing in the scene since the days of the Native Tongues collective.
Akala has since spent time commenting on the current shape of politics; lending his support to Jeremy Corbyn and appearing as a panellist on Frankie Boyle’s politically slanted TV shows.
With the blunt force of grime gaining all the headlines, Akala is an altogether more considered artist but that’s not to say his music is lacking power or energy in the slightest.
In fact, his rapid-fire delivery is something special and something worth going to see live; you have your opportunity on April 19th.
AKALA plays the o2 ABC in Glasgow on April 19.
Kimbra is probably still best known for featuring in one-hit-wonder Gotye’s song Somebody That I Used to Know, or possibly for providing Fifa with a couple of songs for its soundtrack, but she is well worth a listen in her own right to say the least.
Her voice is as impressive as anyone in the charts and although she demonstrates the same vocal acrobatics as Christina Aguilera and Jessie J, she manages to do so in a way that doesn’t pierce your brain unlike the latter.
Among the many producers on her latest album Primal Heart are Skrillex and Grammy winner John Congleton. It seems Kimbra’s label is really willing to push her now – better late than never.
Primal Heart is out on April 20.
CCA (Centre for Contemporary Arts) is always a good bet for some sort of quirky experience or another.
Situated on Sauchiehall Street, the gallery/workshop/venue/café offers a space for those looking to immerse themselves in the renowned artistic side of the city, either as a creator or just an appreciator.
This event looks to understand cooking as an artistic, creative, educational practice. The idea is to bring in influences and perspectives from a broad range of cultural backgrounds, and to learn the different methods, recipes, sources and stories behind the dishes that make up those cultural backgrounds.
Culture will always be inextricably linked with the artworld, and there are few more impactful signifiers of crossing cultures than gastronomy and the processes that go into creating it.
Mobile Kitchens is on at CCA today. Free, ticketed.