Peter Steward's Web Site


Home Page Music Reviews Book Reviews Biography My Writing Sign Guestbook Contact Me

Music Review Section

Music Index

The starting point for an index of all my musical sections.


Historic Album Reviews

I am gradually building up my reviews of historic albums from America to U2


The Music Years

Albums reviewed by years from 1963 until the present day.


The Gig List

A list of concerts and gigs I have attended over the years with reviews when I can remember what they were like.


Music Writing

My music writing - both published and unpublished.


Here and Now

Details of Eastern Evening News Here and Now columns I was involved in.


2009 Album Reviews

Major 2009 albums reviewed and rated.


Peter on Twitter 
Peter on Facebook
View My Guestbook     
My Amazon Reviews
Free music - Best of 2009


Free music - Best of 2010

My favourite tracks from 2010 compiled as a playlist.






The Music Years - 2013

The following albums were released in 2013 and have been reviewed thanks to the following legal music sites:

The Next Day - David Bowie - 5

The Next Day/Dirty Boys/The Stars (Are Out Tonight)/Love is Lost/Where are We Now?/Valentine's Day/If You Can See Me/I'd Rather Be High/Boss of Me/Dancing out in Space/How Does the Grass Grow?/You Feel So Lonely You Could Die/Heat

There's a kind of definite sadness when you find an album not living up to its hype. Bowie came out of retirement at the age of 66 and gathered almost universal praise in the music and national press for this album. I was so anticipating it and looking forward in expectation of a collection of poignant vignettes summing up the past, looking at the present and possibly anticipating the future. The first single Where Are They Now was a return to form and promised much. Harking back to his Berlin days, there was a sad poignancy about the lyrics and a wistful tune that got into your brain. Sadly as it turns out it is by far and away the best track on the album. I use the word charm a lot in writing music reviews and again it's in short supply on The Next Day - thus making the fact that Bowie has returned to recording the main story rather than the music itself. There are too many upbeat rockers here that follow on from what's gone before but add little to it. The pieces seem to almost melt into one another with no breaks for subtlety apart from on "Where Are They Now" and the final track "Heat." The sad thing is that ultimately this adds very little to the Bowie canon which is a huge disappointment. Bowie could have nodded to the past and set the ground rules for any future releases. To find out how great an artist this man has been I would suggest returning to Hunky Dory, Ziggy Stardust and Aladdin Sane. Now those were great days.

Pale Green Ghosts - John Grant - 3

Midway through this second solo album from the former Czars frontman I found myself running out of patience. His previous offering "Queen of Denmark" was one of my favourite albums of 2010 with its wonderful melodies, intriguing lyrics and charm. Sadly Pale Green Ghosts has none of that charm. It is a harsh album dominated by two aspects - electronica and Grant's obvious need for serious help as a person. Grant has been diagnosed as HIV positive. Openly gay he seems to feel that through his music we should be helping him. That means a series of harsh, spittingly acidic songs railing at life and his own situation. Self obsessed would be the best description of them. And so halfway through I was beginning to question the point of listening further to four letter tirades against society and his personal situation. Queen of Denmark was in many ways a beautiful record full of memorable songs. This isn't in any way, shape or form and I can only suggest that Grant needs to get back to the drawing board. There are a few points where it seems to pick up only to return to the hate filled invectives. Certainly an album I could well do without.