Edwyn Collins sounds more relaxed and assured than ever on Doctor Syntax, his fifth solo album. Responsible for virtually every single sound on the album, other than some treatments and programming from Sebastian Lewsley and drums by Paul Cook, Collins focuses all of his energy into crafting fascinating postmodern tunes. Though there's a lo-fi feel to the beats and samples and only a modest amount of texture added to the guitars, it's a remarkably lush and layered-sounding album. Indeed, it even brings to mind the quasi-medieval rumblings of Momus and the mystical frivolity of Baby Bird, without those artists' trademark lunacy. Themes of Beatles adulation, condemned ex-lovers, and introspective questioning fit nicely with Collins' moody, quirky vibes. Gone is the rage and noise of I'm Not Following You, and in its place is a focus on sometimes gentle melodies and emotions.
The Fukushima Daiichi Nuclear Power Plant was the site of one of the world's worst nuclear accidents. Recently discovered data suggest massive leaks of radioactive substances began sooner than previously thought. On this program, we look at how the materials managed to breach safety devices and escape.