mon 06/04/2020

CDs/DVDs

Blu-ray: Kansas City

After Robert Altman re-established his critical reputation with The Player in 1992, he directed nine more films – including two of his most ambitious multiple-character works, Short-Cuts (1993) and Gosford Park (2001).In terms of notable speaking...

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Album: Basia Bulat - Are You In Love?

“No Control” feels like an instant pop classic. It opens with a brief introduction where layers of instrumentation are added in waves. There’s a restraint. Then, three-quarters of minute into what initially seems like a reflective mid-tempo ballad,...

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Blu-ray: Chained for Life

The crass Disneyfication of the Beauty and the Beast tale crumbles in the face of Chained for Life. Starring Jess Weixler and Adam Pearson, writer-director Aaron Schimberg’s Altman-esque US indie – a low-key autumn 2019 release now available on a...

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Album: Little Dragon - New Me, Same Us

Buried lyrical tremors barely disturb Little Dragon’s blissed electronic R&B, on the former Gothenburg schoolmates’ fifth album. Though forming in 1996, they took another decade to really begin a career which has included collaborations with...

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Album: The Weeknd - After Hours

Let’s talk about “Blinding Lights”. What a sleek single, like an escapee from the acclaimed soundtrack to the film Drive, a polished riff on mid-Eighties synth-pop, ripe for 21st century dancefloors, one of the songs of the year so far, all topped...

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Album: Morrissey - I Am Not a Dog on a Chain

The best place to start with Morrissey's new LP is the title track, which begins as a petty dig at the media. "I do not read newspapers/ they are troublemakers", the singer croons indignantly. But then, as the music builds and his anger mounts, Moz...

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Album: Roger and Brian Eno - Mixing Colours

Perhaps remarkably, given both their careers as pioneers and inspirations in the world of ambient music, but this is the first duo album from brothers Brian and Roger Eno – although fans will treasure their music as a trio with Daniel Lanois on 1983...

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DVD/Blu-ray: Beat the Devil

Humphrey Bogart. John Huston. Gina Lollobrigida. Peter Lorre. Truman Capote! What could possibly go wrong? There’s the screenplay for starters: Capote gets top billing, and I’d long understood that he and Huston together wrote 1953's Beat the...

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Album: The Chats - High Risk Behaviour

At a time when stepping outside your front door constitutes risky behaviour, the short, sharp, shocking tales of misspent youth from Queensland pop-punk trio The Chats are a proper tonic."Short" might be an understatement, as it goes. The debut...

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Album: Shabaka & the Ancestors - We are Sent Here by History

Londoner Shabaka Hutchings's other main groups, The Comet Is Coming and Sons Of Kemet, are pretty modernist. They incorporate dub, post-rock, post punk and rhythm patterns that recall London pirate radio sounds into the playing of his ensembles,...

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Album: Deap Lips - Deap Lips

Fans of Deap Vally’s raunchy, riff-driven rock are likely to be somewhat confused, and even disappointed with the band’s collaboration with psychedelic pranksters The Flaming Lips. Less of a full-blown partnership, it feels more like Wayne Coyne’s...

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DVD/Blu-ray: Last Holiday

There’s a scarily prescient scene at the start of Henry Cass’s 1950 black comedy Last Holiday, a village surgery’s waiting room crammed with coughers and wheezers. Poor George Bird (Alec Guinness) is a tad under the weather too, but being mistakenly...

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