This Week In Music – BRITS: Kanye West, Madonna + Libertines, Rihanna, Maccabees... Listen

This Week In Music – BRITS: Kanye West, Madonna + Libertines, Rihanna, Maccabees... Listen

Jonathan Hatchman (@JonHatchman) picks out the sounds and stories that have been making headlines over the last seven days... and presents them all as a handy playlist


Taking over the majority of this week’s music news is this year’s BRIT Awards. Held at London’s O2 Arena on Wednesday evening (25 February), the ceremony brought few surprises with Sam Smith and Ed Sheeran dominating the awards side of the evening, which also brought a number of live performances, most notable of which was probably Kanye West’s. Introduced by his wife Kim Kardashian, Kanye was joined by his “crew” all shrouded in black hoodies as well as a huge flamethrower to perform new song All Day. Perhaps unsurprisingly, the majority of the performance’s audio was muted by the ITV, taking place just a little while after the watershed. However, since the ceremony a full, uncensored version of the performance has made its way online and is available to watch now.

Also making headlines with her BRITs performance, not necessarily for all of the right reasons, is Madonna. Set to release her thirteenth studio album next week, the artist took to The O2’s stage to close the show with her first BRIT Awards performance in 20 years. However, the most talked about moment of the performance of Living For Love was the singer’s fall from a mini stage after her cape was pulled by one of her dancers after being tied too tightly.

Set to star in a brand new animated movie – Home - courtesy of DreamWorks, Rihanna has also written a single that’s set to appear upon the film’s soundtrack. Fresh from having collaborated with Paul McCartney and man of the moment - Kanye West on their opinion dividing FourFiveSeconds, new song Towards The Sun is a pop number that embraces the Bajan artist’s upbeat side quite prominently.

Meanwhile in music festival news, joining Metallica and Mumford & Sons as headliners at this year’s Reading & Leeds Festival are The Libertines. Already set to appear at T In The Park, the band have promised to finally air some new material from the long-awaited follow up to the band’s 2004 album – The Libertines.

Making their grand return in 2015 with the follow up to 2012’s Given To The Wild, of which the lengthy recording process is finally complete, are one of Britain’s best-loved indie outfits – The Maccabees. Having remained relatively quiet over the past two years, the band recently played a set at this year’s BBC6 Music Festival in Tyneside, following an intimate warm-up show at Sheffield’s Leadmill last weekend as well as supporting Kasabian on their UK tour at the tail end of 2014. Here’s a clip of the band’s BBC6 return to form.

Jonathan's pick Of The Week They may have only been around for a matter of months, but Brighton’s Black Honey are already beginning to make a name for themselves as an exciting alternative outfit with a strong DIY ethos. And having just finished a tour in support of The Cribs, the band are set to release a new AA-side single Madonna/Spinning Wheel which will be release physically in April, however a limited run of just five CD copies, as well as some exclusive Polaroid photos, are available for auction from the band’s eBay account. The former is another slice of garage inspired guitar pop that has seen the band’s rise to prominence across the past six months.