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Playlist: Hooked On Classics


The death of James Last earlier this year highlighted the often strange relationship between “pop” and “serious” music, Diarmuid Kennedy writes. Last’s weird function seems to have been to take easily digestible popular music and make it even blander – the musical equivalent of a chip milkshake.  Mercifully there are other approaches.

David Lang’s version of the Velvet Underground’s ‘Heroin’ makes it an even darker, more haunting song.

The Alarm Will Sound ensemble has knocked out a complete album of Aphex Twin arrangements.

The percussionist Joby BurgessPowerplant project has taken on some of Kraftwerk’s canon for their Electric Counterpoint recording.

Perhaps unsurprisingly, given his long association with experimental music, Brian Eno has received loads of attention from contemporary classical musicians.  Bang On A Can made an amazing arrangement and recording of his Music For Airports.

The contemporary music group Icebreaker have done something similar with Eno’s Apollo album

The pianist and composer Timo Andres has taken tunes from Apollo, Before and After Science and Another Green World to create his Paraphrase on Themes of Brian Eno


is a Belfast-based freelance photographer.