Peter Hook at a recent Joy Division Orchestrated performance at London’s Royal Albert Hall.
VDImages & Yannis Hostelidis
The music alone, despite its unquestionable majesty, cannot entirely explain the enduring appeal of a band that existed for barely two years before its lead singer took his own life.
David Bowie in the film clip for Space Oddity: the song would become an anthem for space exploration with an enduring appeal.
Fifty years ago, on July 11, 1969, David Bowie released Space Oddity. With its adventurous orchestration, unsettling harmonics and melancholy narrative, the now classic song captured a moment.
Kate Miller-Heidke performs Zero Gravity during the Grand Final of the 64th annual Eurovision Song Contest: an oddball, meteoric and sincere performance.
Long known as a spectacle of quirky Euro-kitsch, this year's contest more closely resembled singing TV shows such as The Voice. Notable exceptions, however, were Iceland's Hatari and our own Kate Miller-Heidke.
The Walker Brothers performing in 1965.
The music of Scott Walker was central to the Golden Age of songwriters. It has inspired a multitude since, from David Bowie to Thom Yorke.
Michael Jackson performing with guitarist Slash in 1999.
Sexual abuse in the music industry is a systemic, ongoing problem that won’t be resolved by just hacking away at the canon.
There are some great women guitarists but they struggle to make it into the rock canon.
There are numerous women guitar virtuosos, from Joan Jett to Orianthi to St Vincent. Why are they so conclusively excluded from the rock canon?
Leonard Cohen pictured in July 2008. His 2016 letter to his ‘muse’ Marianne Ihlen went viral after his death in the same year.
Leonard Cohen's letter to his former girlfriend on her death bed became a viral phenomenon. But the words that circulated on social media were a paraphrased version, not his own.
A copy of the original White Album signed by George Martin: his son Giles Martin and mix engineer Sam Okell have remixed the album on its 50th anniversary.
Julien''s Auctions/Supplied by WE/AAP
Remixing a Beatles album might be seen as both artistically redundant and cynically commercial. But this remixed classic allows us to experience the album in a new way.
Nick Cave performing with The Bad Seeds in Budapest in June. His song lyrics, with those often melancholy, churchy organ chords, are dripping in references to what might be called sacredness.
The enquiry into sacredness is not over, it’s just beginning for the 21st century, and in wildly disparate modes and places. In music, Nick Cave, Hozier and Dr G. Yunupingu have led the way.
Was setting fire to all that money immoral waste, ritual sacrifice or artistic statement?
Sgt Pepper’s Lonely Hearts Club Band : is this the best popular music has to offer?
Paul Townsend, flickr
Dubbed the greatest album ever by Rolling Stone, Sgt Pepper's Lonely Hearts Club Band is turning 50. We asked six experts how it had stood the test of time and found opinions diverged widely.
Mandoza at the South African music Awards in 2012.
South African Music Awards/flickr
Kwaito music star Mandoza was an important symbolic figure in the post-apartheid cultural scene. His success and his refusal to relinquish his tsotsi identity redefined what kind of man could be respected in a free South African.
The Beatles have released their early recordings in mono and the Rolling Stones are soon to follow suit. Fans think they sound better.
Björk performed a five hour set at Vivid Sydney, showcasing her latest album Vulnicura.
The small, geographically isolated country of Iceland is a leader in technology, environmentalism, experimental music and feminism. And Bjork, one of its most famous exports, mines all these themes in her new Sydney exhibition.
A still from Lemonade: a new way of experiencing music.
Why must women's art be seen as autobiographical when we readily accept the idea of male auteurs spinning fictionalised yarns? In her much analysed video and album Lemonade, Beyoncé may be playing make believe.
Prince performing during his ‘Diamonds and Pearls Tour’ in London in 1992.
Superstar Prince’s impact went far beyond the realm of music. His relevance stretched beyond the concert hall into many lecture rooms.
A detailed look at one of the musician's most celebrated performances gives a glimpse of the dedication which allowed talent to flourish.
Sir Paul McCartney thinks it’s ridiculous (but flattering) that people formally study The Beatles.
Sir Paul McCartney has been making some waves. On New Year’s Eve, Kanye West released a new single, Only One, a collaboration with The Beatles great on keys. On Twitter, Kanye’s fans reacted, wanting to…