The Kronos Quartet / Floodplain

San Francisco’s Kronos Quartet have grown their huge reputation largely by pushing the boundaries of what you can do with two violins, a viola and a cello. This disc continues that tradition, mixing a few challenging tracks in among the distinctive radio-friendly three-minute pieces (Tashweesh and Ya Habibi Ta’ala). The sumptuously packaged collection is based […]

Come Celebrate

Come Celebrate

In the spring of 1964 I wrote a hymn to celebrate the birthday of the Young People’s Fellowship of Edgware Parish Church in North London, where, for five years, I had been Curate. I called it Christ Triumphant and I still have the pencilled original. I had no idea it would become world famous and […]

Wine of the week: Atlantique

Wine of the week: Atlantique

Atlantique Sauvignon Blanc/Gros Manseng 2008 Co-op £4.99 (offer, until November10) How many people have heard of a grape called Gros Manseng (or its brother, Petit Manseng)? Both white varieties are grown in South-West France where they are used to make limited quantities of wines not easily available here. Now, with the relaxation of French appellation […]

Gillian Tett's message to the Church

Gillian Tett's message to the Church

By Derek Walker The Financial Times’ Gillian Tett is still getting used to being on the ‘wrong’ end of a microphone. As the Press Association’s current Journalist of the Year, hard on the heels of her award as the 2008 British Business Journalist of the Year, she is more used to asking questions than answering […]

Seriously Funny: Marcus Brigstocke

Seriously Funny: Marcus Brigstocke

Religion is to comics what a 20-acre field of waist-high grass is to a cow – a never-ending feast to gorge on. Sometimes it feeds the wry observational humour of those like the late Dave Allen, who loved to goad the Catholic Church; sometimes it is simply an excuse to vent irrational bile, as with […]

Coffee Cake test

Coffee Cake test

115 gms butter 180 gms sugar 2 eggs 275 mls sour cream 1 ½ tsp baking powder 1 ½ cups flour 1 tsp vanilla 225 gms pecans ½ jar mincemeat Candied green and red cherries Preheat oven to 350F. Melt the butter in a large saucepan over a low heat. Remove from heat. Beat in […]

Me and Orson Welles

Me and Orson Welles (dir. Richard Linklater. Cert. 12A) is an ambitious story, giving high school student and would-be actor Richard Samuels (Zac Efron) a chance meeting with Orson Welles (Christian McKay) and a small part in the 1937 Mercury Theatre production of Julius Caesar. Most famous now for its War of the Worlds radio […]