...and four other things you need to know about this week, including a celebration of a legendary Seventies design studio, the unlikeliest use of a former X Factor contestant and the ultimate Movember incentive (via an excellent box-set)More
We hope Dave Grohl and co were collecting their Tiger Tokens when they set out on an epic road trip (let's face it, they probably took a private jet) to record the Foo Fighters’ latest album, Sonic Highways, out on 10 November. Each of the eight songs was recorded in a different American city at a different legendary studio and with a different legendary accomplice. So Chuck D chips in at New York City’s The Magic Shop, Death Cab For Cutie’s Ben Gibbard pipes up at Robert Lang Studios in Seattle, Carrie Underwood warbles along at Southern Ground Studios in Nashville, and so on. If that didn’t all sound ambitious enough, Dave Grohl also decided to shoot a making-of movie, also called Sonic Highways, the first two episodes of which will be shown on BBC Four, as will the final two, which will air in December. In between you can follow the Foos’ progress by watching the middle four episodes on iPlayer. We’re not sure why half the series isn’t on TV – did they get waylaid on LA’s Four Level interchange for longer than expected? Oh wait, the jet.
The National Portrait Gallery in London is full of all kinds of images of the great, the good, and the infamous, from Henry VIII to Emmeline Pankhurst and Winston Churchill. All of whom would no doubt be thrilled to learn that they’ll soon be joined by points-dodging politician Chris Huhne and tweezer-happy X-Factor contestant Rylan Clark, whose portraits will appear in the nineteenth and twentieth century rooms from Friday. But no, this isn’t protestor sabotage, or an artist prank – it’s part of a new show, Grayson Perry: Who Are You? in which the Turner Prize-winning artist examines portraiture and notions of British identity and will accompany a TV series of the same name which starts on Channel 4 on Wednesday. And if that all seems a bit glib, remember that Perry gave the Reith Lectures this year and his last TV show won a BAFTA, so let’s just assume Rylan’s up there for good reason.