Northern Soul

Author: Desmond Bullen

Appointment In Arezzo

Review – A Celebration of Muriel Spark: Jackie Kay, Alan Taylor & Louise Welsh, Manchester Literature Festival

October 18, 2018 No Comments

It’s cosily disorientating.

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Day sketch for an architect's retreat Gordon Hodkinson

Review – Drawing The Modern: The Work of Gordon Hodkinson, Manchester Metropolitan University

October 6, 2018 Comments Off on Review – Drawing The Modern: The Work of Gordon Hodkinson, Manchester Metropolitan University

Over the past decade, there’s been a parabolic swell of a very particular appreciation for modernist architecture, best exemplified by Manchester’s (and now Sheffield’s) Modernist Society.

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Image: William Kentridge, in collaboration with Philip Miller, Catherine Meyburgh and Peter Gibson. The Refusal of Time, 2012

Review – William Kentridge: Thick Time, The Whitworth, Manchester

October 6, 2018 Comments Off on Review – William Kentridge: Thick Time, The Whitworth, Manchester

Crossing the threshold into William Kentridge’s puzzle box of a touring exhibition, presently awaiting discovery at the edges of Manchester’s Whitworth, is a subtly, if pleasurably, disorientating experience, as though its terrain was the lens of a kaleidoscope at the moment a determined shift of the instrument brings the same fragments into a different focus.

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“If the city had a voice, where would you hear it?” Northern Soul chats to author Ben Webster

October 6, 2018 Comments Off on “If the city had a voice, where would you hear it?” Northern Soul chats to author Ben Webster

Ben Webster finds himself in a curious position.

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We Were Strangers

Book Review: We Were Strangers – Stories Inspired by Unknown Pleasures edited by Richard V. Hirst

September 17, 2018 Comments Off on Book Review: We Were Strangers – Stories Inspired by Unknown Pleasures edited by Richard V. Hirst

Viewed decades later, the sleeve of Unknown Pleasures anticipates the after-effects of the vinyl it enfolds: its image the radiation signature of a star long dead, its transmissions still detectable by those with ears to hear.

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Hometown Tales Lancashire, Jenn Ashworth and Benjamin Webster

Book Review – Hometown Tales: Lancashire by Jenn Ashworth and Benjamin Webster

August 27, 2018 Comments Off on Book Review – Hometown Tales: Lancashire by Jenn Ashworth and Benjamin Webster

Like Dial-a-Disc or foil disposable ashtrays in takeaways, the cinema double bill has receded into the lint of a barely conceivable past yet to be reappropriated by the stylists of today’s lazy nostalgia.

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Review: Madagascar The Musical, Palace Theatre, Manchester

August 20, 2018 Comments Off on Review: Madagascar The Musical, Palace Theatre, Manchester

The kids love it. They shriek, they cackle, and – to the insistent cue of I Like To Move It – they dance in their seats.

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Playing for a Draw, National Football Museum, Manchester

Review: Playing For A Draw, National Football Museum, Manchester

July 24, 2018 Comments Off on Review: Playing For A Draw, National Football Museum, Manchester

A minnow with ambitions.

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“Morrissey chose it. Morrissey chose everything.” Northern Soul talks to photographer Stephen Wright

July 4, 2018 Comments Off on “Morrissey chose it. Morrissey chose everything.” Northern Soul talks to photographer Stephen Wright

Neither of us intend it, I’m sure, but our conversation circles back time and again to a once-forgotten corner of Ordsall on a bitter December day in 1985.

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Photographs Smiths Salford Lads Club, Steve Wright

Review: The Smiths 1984–1986, Stephen Wright, Central Library, Manchester

June 18, 2018 Comments Off on Review: The Smiths 1984–1986, Stephen Wright, Central Library, Manchester

Like the contents of a can of pop, pent-up and shaken, The Smiths fizzed dramatically if briefly, upending the charts for fewer than five years, before going flat in misunderstanding and acrimony.

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