mon 06/04/2020

Australia

The Test: A New Era for Australia's Team, Amazon Prime review - how ball-tampering scandal forced a cricket revolution

It was in March 2018 that Australia’s cricketers were caught ball-tampering during a Test match in Cape Town. The resulting public outcry and sanctions against the guilty players and assorted backroom staff shook the Australian game to the core....

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Sean Shibe, Wigmore Hall review - mesmerising journey from light to dark

"All true spiritual art has always been RADICAL art": thus spake the oracular Georges Lentz, composer of the pitch-black odyssey for electric guitar that took everyone by surprise last night. In that vein, why not add that all the greatest...

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True History of the Kelly Gang review - anarchy in Oz

“Nothing you’re about to see is true,” this adaptation of Peter Carey’s novel about Australia’s iron-clad Victorian outlaw Ned Kelly declares. Justin Kurzel’s wild investigation of the Kelly myth, Australian manhood and nationhood carves out its own...

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Albums of the Year 2019: Angie McMahon - Salt

Appearing on NPR Music’s legendary Tiny Desk Concert series back in autumn, Taylor Swift talked about how, in interviews over the years, she’d been asked a thousand variations on “what would you write about if you ever get happy?” “Would I not be...

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The Nightingale review – revenge without redemption

Writer-director Jennifer Kent knows that Australia’s colonial past shouldn’t be beautified, and she drives that fact home in every gloom-drenched shot of The Nightingale (her second feature after The Babadook from 2014). This is an immensely...

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CD: U-Bahn - U-Bahn

Despite their name, U-Bahn are from Melbourne. Instead of looking to Germany for their musical inspiration, their minds are on a vintage band from Ohio. “Beta Boyz”, the first track on their eponymous debut album, reassembles the key elements of...

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Tim Minchin, Eventim Apollo review - fabulous triumph of rhyme and reason

Is there anything Tim Minchin cannot do? He sings his own songs, plays hot bar-room piano and tells jokes about the existence of God. He composes musicals, performs in Lloyd Webber and Stoppard, writes a multimillion-dollar Hollywood cartoon which...

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My Life is Murder, Alibi review - whimsical tales of detection from Down Under

Lucy Lawless achieved cult status in the Nineties fantasy classic Xena: Warrior Princess, and later became a regular in such disparate creations as Battlestar Galactica and Parks and Recreation. In My Life is Murder, she joins the ever-expanding...

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The Secret River, National Theatre review - turbulent tale of Australia's past

Neil Armfield’s resonant, turbulent production of Kate Grenville’s classic Australian novel The Secret River sing out from the stage of the Olivier like an epic, with its conflicts, culture clashes, and quest for new territories. But there are no...

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DVD/Blu-ray: The Chant of Jimmie Blacksmith

Fred Schepisi’s The Chant of Jimmie Blacksmith (1978) was the Australian New Wave film that most rigorously confronted the cataclysmic effect of British and Irish colonisation on the country’s Aboriginal people. It helped pave the way for such 21st...

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Blu-ray: My Brilliant Career

Revisiting Gillian Armstrong's My Brilliant Career for the first time since I saw it in its year of release, 1979, is a mixed experience. I was close in age to its heroine and it was one of the first mainstream feature films I’d ever seen...

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Gravity & Other Myths: Backbone, Brighton Festival 2019 review - eyeboggling and very human circus show

Shows by Gravity & Other Myths fall into the realm of “contemporary circus”. It’s an off-putting moniker, bringing to mind a performance where there’s no clowning but quite possibly much “thought-provoking” interpretive dance. The decade-old...

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