Tag Archives: reviews

Album Review: Master of My Make-Believe – Santigold

1 May

Santi White returns with her second album, four years after her hit debut, mainly due to exhaustion she says. But does it live up to the wait? In short, yes.

Her eclectic mix of art pop is back on top form. She hasn’t changed which is something I love about this artist. She doesn’t rely on her image, outlandish press stunts, crazy meat dresses or getting into twitter feuds with other celebrities to get her fame, she earns it. Not only is she the master of her make-believe, she’s the master of her image and her own genre. Words can’t describe what genre this record is. It’s just Santigold. What’s not to love?
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Book Review: The Other Hand by Chris Cleave

29 Apr

“Once you have read it, you’ll want to tell everyone about it. When you do, please don’t tell them what happens either. The magic is in how it unfolds.” I’ve never agreed with the blurb of a book more. Chris Cleave’s quietly powerful novel manages to engross you from it’s first sentence. “Sometimes I wish I was a pound coin.” perhaps it’s these incredibly simplistic sentences that manage to captivate the reader. It enters your mind without any graces or claims to change your life yet Cleave’s grip on suffering and grief is so tight, it’ll captivate your mind and your heart.

The blurb on the back is deliberately vague as is my description of the book. Little Bee is released from a detention centre in London, the place she has come to after leaving her home of Nigeria. Sarah works as a magazine editor, she has a five year old son. Something dramatic has changed her life. The two have already met. That’s all I can divulge.
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Album Review: Alabama Shakes – Boys & Girls

19 Apr

Personally, I’m not a fan of blues, Eric Clapton or any of that kind of stuff. However; what’s so great about Alabama Shakes is how they breathe a whole ton of fresh air into this somewhat tired genre, that makes it seem far less overbearing and niche. Yet it’s not sugary pop (don’t expect Gotye). If anything it feels more soul inspired and the whole thing conjures up a world of sepia. That can’t be a bad thing.


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Movie Review: The Descendants

29 Jan

After a seven year break, Alexander Payne is back with his latest offering which is a real Oscar frontrunner. It tackles some of the themes that we’ve previously seen in Payne’s work but certainly includes new material. It definitely goes along with his perfect track record.

Matt King (George Clooney) is a land baron in Hawaii. He’s supposedly in ‘paradise’ but life doesn’t seem to be very paradisiacal at the moment. His wife has just suffered from a boating accident and is in a serious coma. He’s now left to take care of his two daughters, and he’s the self confessed ‘back-up’ parent. While Ms. King is in the coma he finds out that she’s been having an affair.
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Movie Review: Coriolanus

21 Jan

Shakespeare adaptations in movies haven’t always worked out so greatly. Hamlet in 1990 with Glenn Close and Mel Gibson wasn’t so great. The Baz Luhrman Romeo and Juliet had potential but didn’t turn out to be a great film. There have been some great ones though. Take Kenneth Branagh’s brilliant rendition of Henry V, for example. Ralph Fiennes’s Coriolanus definitely fits into the great category.

Coriolanus is a tragedy written by Shakespeare sometime between 1605 to 1608. Caius Martius Coriolanus (Fiennes) despises the people of Rome. His extreme views cause riots to break out and panic is filed throughout the city. He is desperate to seek revenge on the city and his arch enemy Aufidius (Gerard Butler).
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Movie Review: The Artist

8 Jan

One thing has got everyone talking about this film (apart from all the awards buzz) it’s a black and white silent movie. Receiving a lot of attention at Cannes this year, and a Best Actor award, this has a lot going for it. Gimmick? I thought so back in May but further along I was desperate to see this and the silent thing is completely forgotten about altogether.

Michel Hazanavicius directs Jean Dujardin as George Valentin, a silent movie star who is all the rage in Hollywood 1927. He’s an A-lister but all of that is put in jeopardy when the talkies start to become big. He meets upcoming star Peppy Miller (Hazanavicius’ wife, Bérénice Bajo) along the way and falls in love. But with one star on the rise and one on the decline, what happens?
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Movie Review: The Ides of March

19 Dec

Finally I’ve seen this. I’ve been dying to and now I finally have. A political thriller with an all-star cast, an A-lister for the director and a cracking story all in time for Oscar season. It’s a recipe for success.

George Clooney directs, stars and adapts this adaptation of Beau Williamon’s 2008 play Farragut North, which was very well received. The story follows Stephen Meyers (Ryan Gosling) who is the Junior Campaign Manager for Mike Morris (George Clooney) who is a democratic presidential candidate. He is campaigning against fellow democratic candidate Ted Pullman. They’re both campaigning in Ohio and this is the crucial state to getting elected. That’s the backdrop for the story, as you can imagine there’s money, corruption, greed, sex, scandal and a whole lot of other stuff that goes on behind closed doors.
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Play Review: Jerusalem

18 Nov

Back in August, when my blog had just started, I wrote a post about how I had just bought tickets to this play. How I excited I was, and how much I was looking forward to it. There’s been a lot of hype around this play. With all the awards, rave reviews, including comments hailing Mark Rylance as the ‘Laurence Olivier of our time’ and this play being ‘an instant modern classic’, it’s safe to say that this is supposed to be a good play. Let me say, that the hype is most certainly justified.

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The play is set in Wiltshire England and takes place on St. George’s Day. Johnny ‘Rooster’ Byron (Mark Rylance) is a local drug dealer and alcohol supplier to teenagers in the area. He’s wanted by the council for his illegal encampment of his home van. Many more events will transpire on this festive day for the village. It’s a big day for Johnny ‘Rooster’ Byron.

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Album Review: Ceremonials – Florence + The Machine

28 Oct

Florence Welch is amazing. There is no room for argument.

Thanks to Channel 4 and rayofmystery on YouTube I have been able to listen to Ceremonials, the new album from Florence + the Machine, in it’s entirety. Wow. I’m probably not the best person to review this CD because I’m kind of biased towards this band. I absolutely love them. Lungs is definitely on of my favourite albums of all time, it is just spectacular. Whilst everybody told me that my beloved band were going to sell out this can prove them wrong. This album is a perfect follow up.

What’s struck me about Lungs was how dramatic and bold it was. It was versatile but also had something about it that made you say “that’s Florence and the Machine”. Those characteristics haven’t gone away and this album is even more daring and theatrical than the last. Songs such as Never Let Me Go and No Light, No Light (the best on the album in my opinion) come to the same soaring climaxes that we love by her but there’s something new about it too. There isn’t an undercurrent of same old, same old.

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Movie Review: Midnight in Paris

24 Oct

As soon as the plot was revealed to this movie I couldn’t help but anticipate it rather eagerly. The idea of an American couple going to Paris and not being satisfied with life but always chasing up new things seemed interesting to me. It had to be written well though. Otherwise it would be a pot of clichés and nothing to keep the viewer interested. This kept me interested.

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Woody Allen wrote this almost as a love letter to Paris. When being interviewed he said that of he didn’t live in New York it would have to be Paris. Personally, I like Paris a lot. I have nothing against it, it’s a beautiful city. I just have an issue with the way that Paris is portrayed in the media which affects how we view the city.
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