March 2006

After a wait of almost three months, Nottingham University’s student radio station, URN, are this week on the air daily with Radio One.

Back in the home counties, I took the opportunity to pop up to London and see Howard Davies’ revival of Period of Adjustment. Apparently this gem hasn’t been seen on the London stage since a run in the early Sixties — what a shame!

Currently enjoying maximum exposure supporting their label owner Jack Johnson on his mammoth European Tour, Animal Liberation Orchestra’s debut album Fly Between Falls fuses a similarly effortless surfer-chic style with a touch of funk and folk, leaving a collection of infectious laidback pop.

With the kind of preppy, flyway tunes that wouldn’t look out of place on one of those ubiquitous OC soundtracks, Californian singer-songwriter Matt Costa turns in an impressive debut album. Echoes of ragtime, folk, pyschedelica and country lend the record a distinctly hobo-ish air whilst rockier tracks such as Sweet Thursday provide some much-needed punch. Being yet another Jack Johnson prodigy, the obligatory cameo comes in the shape of the beautiful Lullaby which features tight harmonies and a tumbling melody. A few forgettable filler tracks, namely Songs We Sing and Wash Away do slightly mar an otherwise engaging effort.

What do you get if you cross an animated monkey, the king of surfer chic and a bunch of quality, laid-back acoustic tunes? The answer is the highly improbable yet brilliant soundtrack to Universal Picture’s latest film Curious George. This is no half-hearted commercial stunt from Johnson however – amazingly enough, the album flew straight to the top of the US Billboard charts.

The AUT has reacted angrily to news that university employers have reneged on a commitment to meet with them next week.

The employers had agreed to try and resolve the current pay dispute for higher education staff through a meeting scheduled for March 28th.

Tomorrow night, Ocean will open earlier than ever before. The club, situated close to the Broadmarsh Centre, plans to open its doors at 8pm for the final Friday night of the spring term.

All ticket

The route for Nottingham’s annual Robin Hood marathon could be changed to run through University Park.

At present, the course traverses the city centre and Lenton Lane, where delays frequently occur.

A Leeds lecturer who suggested black people were innately less intelligent than white people has been suspended from his job pending disciplinary action.

More than 500 students signed a petition and demonstrated calling for Dr Frank Ellis’ sacking after he aired his views to Leeds’ student paper.

Dozens of Paris students and workers have become embroiled in riots over a new French labour law tonight.

Although a majority of those protesting against the law – which drops employment safeguards, enabling employers to easily hire and fire those under 26 – were peaceful, embarking upon sit-ins and linking arms, many others looted shops, acted violently against police and set fire to cars.