Podcast: Scotland look to end France’s Six Nations winning streak

Joe Anderson is joined on the EN4 News Six Nations podcast by Ryan Nixon, Erin McRitchie and Fergus Robb, as they discuss this weekend’s matches. Scotland welcome France to the capital – looking to end the French three-game unbeaten run, and England take on Wales in what will be a tightly-contested match, as Ireland and Italy is postponed amid Coronavirus fears.

 

Video: More Coronavirus cases and the Prime Minister of the UAE – EN4 News’ Owen Garner with today’s headlines

Owen Garner brings us today’s headline stories from some of the country’s major newspapers, as the first death from Coronavirus in the UK is confirmed, and the Prime Minister of the United Arab Emirates, Mohamed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, is facing widespread backlash following reports that he ordered the kidnapping of his own daughters.

 

Elizabeth Warren drops out of the race for U.S. presidency – EN4 News

Owen Garner gives us the rundown on one of the biggest international stories, involving the US Presidential race. Democratic candidate Elizabeth Warren announced yesterday that she would be ending her campaign for the White House amid disappointing ‘Super Tuesday’ results, and Warren’s failure to win any states in the first primary contests of 2020. Reporter Christopher Lamb joins Owen in the studio to divulge on what exactly we can expect from the primaries now.

 

Coronavirus, police cuts and Lewis Capaldi – EN4 News’ Owen Garner covers today’s headlines

Owen Garner covers some of today’s major newspaper headlines, as Coronavirus fears continue to plague the country, and Police Scotland face major cuts in the year ahead.

Mackay resignation, Coronavirus and Lothian Buses – EN4 News’ Owen Garner with today’s headlines

Owen Garner explains the headlines across some of today’s major newspapers, as former Scottish Finance Secretary Derek Mackay resigns and Coronavirus continues to wreak havoc.

Podcast: Scotland welcome England to Murrayfield for crunch Six Nations match

Joe Anderson, Erin McRitchie and Ryan Nixon of EN4 News sit down once again to discuss the past weekend’s results in the 2020 Six Nations, as well as how Scotland will fare in this year’s Calcutta Cup match against England.

 

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Stalemate in Iowa as results put Sanders and Buttigieg neck and neck

EN4 News’ Owen Garner gives a rundown on the situation in Iowa, following the Democratic caucus.

Questions still remain over the accuracy surrounding the results of the Iowa caucus, with Pete Buttigieg and Bernie Sanders tied with the same number of delegates.

Throughout the week, the results of the Iowa caucuses have been too close to call, amid a chaotic backdrop of conflicted reports and technical issues.

The results of Monday’s contest, which were supposed to be released the same night, were instead released in batches throughout the week, due to what Iowa officials believe was a technical issue within the mobile app used to tally the votes.

At a press conference on Tuesday, Iowa Democratic Party Chairman, Troy Price, apologised for the delay in the reporting of results and assured that measures were in place to make sure they were accurate.

Price said: “We decided, out of an abundance of caution, to protect the integrity of the Iowa caucuses and their results by taking the necessary steps to review and confirm the data.”

With the final batch of results being released late last night, Buttigieg and Sanders lead the pack of candidates with 11 delegates each and a vote share of 26.2% and 26.1% respectively.

Massachusetts Senator, Elizabeth Warren, walked away with 5 delegates and 18% vote share while favourite to win, former Vice President Joe Biden, finished off with no delegates and only a 15.8% share of the vote.

However, Chair of the Democratic National Committee, Tom Perez, yesterday called on the Iowa Democratic Party to carry out a complete recount of the votes “in order to assure public confidence in the results.”

Perez does not have the power to force a recanvas, however the candidates have until later today to request one.

The accuracy of the results were thrown into further doubt, as it has been discovered that the vote tally from a number of Iowa precincts are filled with errors and inconsistencies.

According to a review carried out by NBC News, at least 4.5% of precincts are reporting a larger number of total votes for the final round of voting than there were in the initial round, which due to how the caucus system works, should be impossible.

Caucuses, which are held in just three states for the Democratic primaries, are a series of gatherings across the state in which people essentially vote with their feet.

Candidates will each have their own area of the room and this time around they were required to have at least 15 people present within their section to move on to the next round.

Any candidates that fail to reach the threshold become non-viable and their supporters will be up for grabs for the final count.

The Iowa caucuses are the first stage in a long process to decide the next Democratic presidential nominee, who will face off against incumbent Donald Trump in November.

Sanders and Buttigieg will head into the New Hampshire primaries next week, looking to capitalise on the momentum their campaigns have received this week, while Biden and Warren will hope to start gaining ground among a crowded field of candidates.

“Farewell, not goodbye” – EN4 News’ Owen Garner with Friday’s headlines

Owen Garner gives us the lowdown on the headlines in todays major newspapers, as the day the United Kingdom officially begins the process of leaving the European Union has finally arrived.

Album Review: ‘Funeral’ by Lil Wayne

Returning to the limelight with his highly anticipated project ‘Funeral’, Lil Wayne may have secured another winner with his 13th studio album.

The New Orleans native first teased the album in 2016, before ceasing to reference it again until late 2019, when a coffin emoji appeared on his Instagram story. Now, just a week after its official announcement, ‘Funeral’ has landed.

The much anticipated ‘Funeral’ by Lil Wayne is out now. (Cover Art: Young Money Entertainment)

The album has been described by Wayne as a much different and more contemporary sound than its predecessor – 2018’s ‘Tha Carter V’.

The title track, backed by a symphony of string instruments that trips into a soft bass and snare, is a raw, emotionally-fuelled opening to the album. ‘Mahogany’ follows, which is a quick switch in tempo. Throughout a breathless delivery, Wayne is flawless over the trippy, hazed-out vocals that make up the instrumental.

Mixing sounds and moving with the times has never been an issue for Wayne. At least one successful album released in one of the last four decades proves the evergreen qualities that Wayne sports as an artist.

The third and fourth track are representative of this. Whilst ‘Mama Mia’ contains lyrics and a dark, metallic backing track that wouldn’t sound out of place in a SoundCloud rapper’s discography. ‘I Do It’ reminds one of a Gunna or Young Thug track. Containing the first features of the album, ‘I Do It’ features veteran Big Sean, who croons through the choruses, and Lil Baby, who provides a short, but sweet verse.

What follows are three tracks in succession, which differ tremendously in style, and flex Wayne’s various artistic capabilities. ‘Dreams’ is loud, aggressive and almost unhappy, whilst ‘Stop Playing With Me’ is a confident, fast-paced assurance of Wayne’s position in the hip-hop community, and his coolness on the mic. ‘Clap For Em’ contains another bass-heavy instrumental that feels very Latin-inspired with a sound that you’d expect to hear in a nightclub.

Jay Rock makes an appearance on ‘Bing James’, a track that for the most part, reminds one of something that Chief Keef or Lil Gnar may produce, in its autotuned, aggressive tones.

If ‘Bing James’ is the high, ‘Not Me’ is the comedown that follows, as it layers the listener’s ears with a sad, melancholic sound.

Adam Levine appears on ‘Trust Nobody’ – not a name you’d associate with Lil Wayne. As predicted, this track is a lot calmer, and more family-friendly, even containing a couple verses from bedtime prayer ‘Now I Lay Me Down To Sleep’.

The next four tracks are fairly strong, but not the most memorable from the album. 2 Chainz and Takeoff appear across two songs, but honestly, don’t really provide anything other than what you’d expect from them. ‘I Don’t Sleep’ is probably the better of the four, with a light-hearted instrumental, and a bouncy, fun delivery from Wayne.

Three features appear on the following four tracks – The-Dream, Lil Twist and the late XXXTENTACION. ‘Sights and Silencers’ is admittedly nothing spectacular, and whilst Lil Twist is a welcome introduction in ‘Ball Hard’, it’s ‘Get Outta My Head’ which piques interest. Lil Wayne compliments XXXTENTACION well on the track, which is actually a rework of ‘The Boy With The Black Eyes’ – a track that the latter originally recorded in 2016.

‘Piano Trap’ is a triumphant-sounding celebration of Wayne’s success, whilst ‘Line Em Up’ reintroduces the snares and rapid backing track we had a glimpse of earlier in the album. ‘Darkside’ is unfortunately fairly forgettable, but ‘Never Mind’, whilst not Wayne’s best track by any means, sticks to the new sound that he was trying to go for, and feels like it has a lot of replay value.

O.T. Genasis appears on the penultimate track ‘T.O.’, which is a wild journey from start to finish. An instrumental that feels wacky and all-over-the-place works its way behind a delivery from Wayne and O.T. that deals mostly in the ‘triplet flow’ that Migos popularised.

The final track on this album, ‘Wayne’s World’, is a good finish to an album that starts sombre and gradually works its way up. ‘Funeral’ was Wayne at the morgue, but ‘Wayne’s World’ is him sealing his resurrection and celebrating his return.

All in all, ‘Funeral’ is a strong album. Whilst it’s not Wayne’s best work to date, it certainly lives up to his promise of a more contemporary sound. Although he’s been on the scene since 1999, Wayne has been one of the quickest of the ‘old guard’ to adopt and work with this new sound that has developed in the 2010s.

The album is sombre and woeful at points, angry and in-your-face at others, and proud and dominant at others. Admittedly, there are tracks you may completely forget about post-album, but all things in consideration, Wayne has kicked off this new decade in an undoubtedly positive fashion.

4/5 STARS

Video: Coronavirus declared as global emergency – EN4 News’ Owen Garner explains

Owen Garner gives us the latest on the Coronavirus, as the disease spreads worldwide, with 98 cases now being confirmed out-with China.

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