Revealed: creeping privatisation of London parks in summer

Exclusive figures show extent to which London councils are using parks for ticketed music festivals such as Wireless to plug budget gaps As chugging guitars reverberated over Finsbury Park last Sunday afternoon, crowds streamed through the Manor House gate past a banner commemorating the parks 150th anniversary. Next to it was another temporary sign: Welcome! Your park is open as usual. The statement was at best disingenuous the gates were certainly open, and so were many of the facilities, but it rather overlooked the 49,000-capacity festival surrounded by 12-foot-high grey metal fencing and audible a mile away. The festival was called Community, but at 50 a ticket, and with a narrow lineup of indie rock, its not that kind of …

Nirvana’s 20 greatest songs ranked!

Its 30 years since the release of the Seattle bands debut album, Bleach. Over the rest of their short career, Kurt Cobain and co would belt out a torrent of classics 20. Blew (1989) Along with Mudhoneys Sweet Young Thing Aint Sweet No More, Nirvanas second single defined the initial sound of grunge: deeply unfashionable early-70s heavy rock refracted through a punk lens, where sludgy riffs met Ramones-ish third wall breaking (here is another word that rhymes with shame) and a coda so repetitious it sounded as if the record were stuck. 19. Territorial Pissings (1991) An excoriation of machismo and sexism, Nirvana tended to launch into the Hsker D-ish Territorial Pissings on TV shows where they were expected to …

Apple expected to close iTunes after 18 years

Tim Cook will announce separate apps for music, TV and podcasts, according to reports It was once heralded as a possible saviour of a U2 album on them, and its graphic novel, but now Apple is to replace its iTunes download service. According to a report by entertainment service rather than a hardware company powered by products such as the iPhone. The move is expected to be part of the keynote address by the Apple chief executive, Tim Cook, at the companys Worldwide Developers Conference in San Jose, California, which starts on Monday and will focus on software updates and Apples new approach to apps. Steve Jobs gives his keynote address on the opening day of Apple Expo in Paris …

Rocketman review Elton’s sparkliest spectacle yet

Taron Egerton is terrific as the singer, but the real star of this electric biopic is director Dexter Fletcher When are you going to hug me? That question echoes around Dexter Fletchers dazzling rock opera a fantastical account of the highs and lows of Elton Johns wild-ride rise, told in frenetically full-blooded musical form. Its the story of a little boy who became a big star while plaintively pleading I want lurrve, but its impossible; a shy kid (an introverted extrovert) who must learn to play-act confidence after enduring a childhood that would have struck a chord with Philip Larkin. Yet unlike the problematically rejigged chronology of Bohemian Rhapsody (which Fletcher rescued from disaster), this proudly nonlinear treat puts its …

1MDB: Fugees rapper and Malaysian businessman indicted over Obama donations

US prosecutors say Jho Low, 37, transferred $21.6m to rapper Prakazrel Pras Michel for 2012 re-election bid A founding member of the hip-hop group the Fugees and a Malaysian businessman have been indicted for making illegal contributions to former US president Barack Obamas 2012 reelection campaign. Haitian-American rapper Prakazrel Pras Michel, 46, and Jho Low, 37, were accused of conspiracy and other charges in the four-count indictment unsealed on Friday. Low is a key figure in what is known as the 1MDB scandal, which has rocked Malaysian political and financial circles. The presidential candidate receiving the contributions was not identified in the indictment and was referred to only as Candidate A. But it has been widely reported and it was …