Rock veteran Neil Young performs with Crazy Horse at London’s Hyde Park tonight
Experimental feature

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Experimental feature

Neil Young, July 12, Hyde Park, London

Neil Young’s latest album A Letter Home was made on an antique Voice-O-Graph machine, a cubicle for making instant recordings on to vinyl records. The results are crackly acoustic covers of old songs, which surely not even the mulish Young will attempt to transfer to the huge open space of Hyde Park. At any rate the presence of his grizzled compadres Crazy Horse on stage with him suggests the old campaigner has something louder in mind. Ludovic Hunter-Tilney

Latitude Festival, July 17-20, Henham Park, Southwold

Two Door Cinema Club, Damon Albarn and the Black Keys headline this year’s Latitude on the Suffolk coast. Elsewhere Röyksopp and Robyn will be playing tracks from their excellent joint minialbum Do It Again and Kelis will be sharing the retro-soul flavour of new album Food. LHT

Guilfest, July 18-20, Stoke Park, Guildford

Sunk by the rainy summer of 2012, after which it went bust, a refloated Guilfest returns with a line-up led by the Boomtown Rats, Kool & the Gang and the Human League. Youths fleeing the distressing sight of dancing dads and mums at the main stage will find refuge elsewhere with the likes of R&B hitmaker Naughty Boy and the successfully hapless Jedward. LHT, 0871 230 1106

The Proms, July 18-September 13, Royal Albert Hall, London

Judging by past experience, opening night at the BBC Proms is best served by a choral work of weighty proportions and evening-filling length – a description that perfectly fits Elgar’s The Kingdom. Elgar’s Passion oratorio, which raises the curtain on the 2014 Proms on Friday, may not be one of his better known works, but it is certainly one of his most moving and grandiloquent. There could be no more accomplished guide to it than Andrew Davis, who conducts the BBC Symphony Orchestra and Chorus, with an excellent line-up of soloists. Andrew Clark, 0845 401 5040

Music at Paxton, July 18-27, Paxton House, Berwickshire

This convivial concert series unites chamber music lovers from both sides of the Scottish border at an 18th-century mansion on the banks of the River Tweed. The opening two days bring an eclectic mix of piano trios and duos played by Alasdair Beatson, Adrian Brendel and Katharine Gowers. The star event is Alina Ibragimova’s recital with her Chiaroscuro Quartet on July 20. AC, 0131 473 2000

La traviata, July 17-August 23, Glyndebourne Festival Opera, East Sussex

Verdi described his opera about a Parisian courtesan as “a subject for our own age” – a bold step for a 19th-century composer. What transpired was a tale of vulnerability, hypocrisy and tragedy that resonates for any age. It is 26 years since La traviata was last seen on the Sussex Downs, and this new production comes with music and drama in the experienced hands of conductor Mark Elder and director-designer Tom Cairns. That the two leading roles are sung by relative unknowns, Venera Gimadieva (Violetta) and Michael Fabiano (Alfredo), only adds to my feeling of keen anticipation. AC, 01273 813813

Jerry Dammers’ Spatial AKA Orchestra (and Reggae Ensemble), July 18, Barbican, London

The former Specials frontman launched the Spatial AKA Orchestra as a one-off tribute to the late Sun Ra in 2006. Since then, he’s expanded the repertoire with original material, his own back catalogue and makeovers of the Jamaican roots music that first inspired it. Ra’s eccentricities remain intact, but now the chants, rampaging free jazz and strange library music merge with blasts of dub and the throb of reggae. Mike Hobart

Otis Taylor, July 13, Ronnie Scott’s, London

The banjo player and guitarist Otis Taylor is an unofficial social historian, his elliptical songs probing into the darker corners of the AfricanAmerican experience. Live, he starts slow and quiet, but inexorably draws the audience into his hypnotic brew. David Honigmann, 020 7439 0747

Photograph: Reuters

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