Bill Ryder-Jones at Room 2, Glasgow, March 12 2024

“You’ve listened to my music,” said Bill Ryder-Jones. “You know who I am.” We have. We do. The co-founder and former guitarist with The Coral, he left that band in 2008, suffering a breakdown, the result of childhood trauma. He is 40 years old. He has on-going problems with agoraphobia. He writes beautiful songs full… Read more »

A Sigh Made of Stone

IT HANGS LIKE a fading memory, like a fragment of a dream, in the dim and dark and dust. It is a painting made of four paintings. Together, they show loose folds of white cloth. The paintings do not quite touch, and the space between them forms, in shadow, a cross. This work of art… Read more »

Reading Orwell in the Age of Trump

“It was a bright cold day in April,” said Richard Blair, “and the clocks were striking thirteen.” Blair is seventy-three and the son of George Orwell. To witness him stand at a lectern and read the opening line of his father’s great final novel, 1984, is to experience a sense of completion, an equation solved…. Read more »

Lou Reed

IT was a bright cold day in March, and the clocks were striking one when I learned I was to interview Lou Reed. Lou Reed! My immediate reaction was elation, swiftly followed by doubt, then dread. Reed is notoriously difficult; he is to journalists what Cape Horn was to 18th century sailors – a vicious… Read more »

Whatever Happened To The Castlemilk Lads?

IT is early 1963 and a group of schoolboys are standing on a green hill in Castlemilk, Europe’s largest housing estate, having their photograph taken. They jostle in front of the camera, crowding into the frame, anxious to be in the picture. One stands on tip-toe, leans his chin on another’s shoulder, and stares straight… Read more »