Swans Got The Loop In Their Hands

Swans a little god

Michael Gira’s second coming with his veteran band Swans is not giving any signs of fading away; about to release their thirteenth studio album ‘To Be Kind’, after the widely acclaimed ‘The Seer’ brought them back amongst Today’s critical darlings. They head our loop this week with the mindblowing album’s first taster ‘A Little God In My Hands’.

A soul-infused edition with new stars of the genre SZA and Jesse Boykins III being the two highest entries; next to new tracks by How To Dress Well; Lana Del Rey; Thee Oh Sees and the main theme from the next Superman sequel, performed by Alicia Keys with Kendrick Lamar.

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The Loop Drinks From tUnE-yArDs Water Fountain

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The exhilarating vocals of Merrill Garbus aka tUnE-yArDs are causing havoc again in our loop. ‘Water Fountain’, the first taster from her third album ‘Nikki Nacks’ tops our chart this week.

American punk band Parquet Courts is the highest of many debuts. Among them, the latest from Popstrangers; The Acid; EMA; Bob Mould; Jack White and a surprising return to for by Clap Your Hands Say Yeah, helped by The National’s Matt Berninger

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Lykke Li Melts The Loop

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Another week, another Swedish female topping the loop; this time our new favourite song marks the return of Lykke Li, about to release her new album ‘I Never Learn’. If the tone of its second taster, ‘Love Me Like I’m not Made Of Stone’, is anything to go by, it looks it will be a darkness and heartbreak-infused opus.

Veteran groundbreaker Michael Gira with his Swans is the highest debut alongside new offerings by Woods: Tinashe Feat. Schoolboy Q; The War On Drugs on a heavily nostalgic edition that sees some sort of 90′s retro offensive featuring the likes of D’Angelo; Roddy Frame; Luke Haines; Kim Deal, but gets crowned by the comeback of scousers extraordinaires Echo And The Bunnymen.

Check this week’s edition after the jump. Read the rest of this entry »

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Perfect Pussy Interfere With Our Loop

perfect pussy

Like in the golden days of grunge, a promising batch of female fronted bands are currently shaking up the music scene. From Syracusa, Perfect Pussy is one of our favourites. Meredith Graves and her boys are the week’s loop topper with ‘Interference Fits’, one of the singles from their debut album ‘Say Yes To Love’.

tUnE-yArDs is this edition’s highest entry, followed closely by the likes of Fucked Up; Damon Albarn; Tove Lo and Friendly Fires, whose return is helped by Andrew Weatherall under his Asphodells moniker.

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Tove Lo Stays High In The Loop

tove lo

The Scandinavian female invasion remains unstoppable. This week, Tove Lo conquers our loop with the standout track from her new EP ‘Truth Serum’, Hippie Sabotage’s remix of ‘Habits’, another of the cuts included on it now renamed as’Stay High’

And the highest debut belongs to other Swedish star, Lykke Li, returning in heartbreaking form. The week’s new entry contingent features new offers by José Domingo; Stromae; SZA and the track where Frank Ocean and Diplo join the legendary Paul Simonon and Mick Jones from The Clash for the Converse collaboration series.

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The Crime Of Real Estate

real estate

Atlas, the excellent third album by New Jersey’s indie faves Real Estate, takes over our loop with ‘Crime’, the second standout taken from it, rising to the top position.

Hippie Sabotage’s remix of Tove Lo is the highest debut; next to new tracks by Owen Pallett; How To Dress Well; White Lung and two renowned French songwrites Etienne Daho and Dominique A, collaborating in the former’s brand new single, ‘En Surface’

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2013 Top 50 Best Films

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And to put a wrap to our film review, after a long and excellent awards season, here’s our blog’s favourite films of the past twelve months. Their subjects ranged from harrowing Oscar winning tales of slavery to the jaw-dropping forces of Gravity; going through teenage sexual explorations; artistic failures; religious dogmas; political calls to arms; financial debauchery; a somali hijacking double bill; a tripe order of paradise; techie romance; child labour; massacre and redemption.

The new year has already started in style with such early heights as Lars Von Trier’s “Nymphomaniac” and Wes Anderson’s “The Great Budapest Hotel”, but before we begin with their review. Let’s take a last glance at those movies that made of 2013 such an special here: Read the rest of this entry »

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The 2013 Rober Awards Film Poll: And The Winners Are…

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Boasting a record number of votes and no shortage of surprises our 2013 Film Poll came to a end with ‘Blue Is The Warmest Colour’ being given a last minute boost, perhaps thanks to their French fans who may have been feeling upset after its near total snub at this year’s Cesars. The Palme D’Or winner managed to take the lead in each of the four categories it was nominated for, including Best Picture over season’s favourite “12 Years A Slave” (which didn’t stop it from scooping a total of five Robers including the ones for best director, best ensemble, adapted screenplay and supporting actress for Lupita Nyong’o); best actress, where Lea Seydoux and Adèle Exarchopoulos prevailed even against Oscar winner and unanimous favourite Cate Blanchett and Foreign Language, beating our best documentary winner “The Act Of Killing” and the all-conquering Italian submission “The Great Beauty”.

Other multiple winners this year were “Her”; “Gravity”; “Dallas Buyers Club”, reprising its Academy award acting honours, and the female-directed Iranian drama “Wadjda”.

Check the complete list of winners after the jump. Congratulations to all winners and nominees and thanks to everyone who cast their vote. Read the rest of this entry »

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The Awards Season’s Race (V): Final Scores

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And It’s a wrap! Matt Groening’s brilliant as always take of the Oscars ceremony’s selfie, the most tweeted in history, serves as the perfect end to this year’s truly exciting, if ultimately very predictable Awards season. 12 Years a Slave fulfilled the Toronto prophecy and grabbed the best picture trophy. Gravity swept the board on technical categories as well as getting its director honoured; American Hustle and many of the latecomers which helped injecting new life into the season just before Christmas were mostly left empty-handed. But all together account for one of the most enjoyable cinematographic crops in recent memory.

As you know by know, this year we released our inner film nerd by monitoring the race step by step and adding points for every mention, nomination and award that each of the films in contention have earned during the season. The final results (and the complete list for those who love things in detail) can be checked here.. Read the rest of this entry »

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2013 Film Review: The Surprises

witching and bitching

Perhaps the biggest surprise of 2013 was the notoriously high quality and quantity of the films on release, which has pushed out of our Top 50 countdown recent works by such acclaimed directors as Baz Luhrmann, whose flamboyant take on The Great Gatsby opened Cannes to critical approval and audience acclaim; Carlos Reygadas, adopting full experimental mode in the challenging Post Tenebras Lux; Matteo Garrone, who followed up his acclaimed ‘Gomorrah’ with a satirical study of our obsession with celebrity in Reality; Andrzej Wajda’s epic account of the life of influential Polish Union leader Lech Walesa; Abas Kiarostami re-enacting the rules of romance in the witty Like Someone In Love or the mix of social realism with over the top goth in Basque genre master Alex De La Iglesia’s latest, Witching & Bitching. Read the rest of this entry »

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Young Fathers Take Over The Loop

young-fathers

Edinburgh alt hip-hop collective Young Fathers take this week’s edition of our loop back to the nineties with their infectious mix of rap, electrónica and pop. ‘NO WAY’, the opening track of their new album ‘Dead’, reaches the top of our chart.

The new track from by songwriter Nacho Vegas stroms his way in, alongside the latest offerings by Lykke Li; Le1f or Gruff Rhys and two highly tipped acts for 2014, FKA Twigs vs. Inc., teaming up in their new record, as do Pharrell Williams & Daft Pank, the French duo returning the favour in one of the standout moments from the popular producer’s new album.

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2013 Film Review: The Disappointments

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As it is our custom, we begin our yearly film review heads down in embarrassment by recalling the biggest disappointments the last twelve months of cinema brought us.

On a year whose offer has spoilt us for choice, there was little time to check those works dismissed by the critics, so many of the sequels, reboots, biopics, romcoms and overall bleak offering of a poorer than usual blockbuster season passed us by completely. This state of affairs meant that we missed out on the dubious charms of such unpopular releases as After Earth, where two generation of Smiths engaged in what’s been described as a love letter to Scientology, cementing M. Night Shyamalan’s reputation as the king of Hollywood flops; the incomprehensible entrapment of half of Tinseltown on a scatological succession of bad jokes in Movie 43 or the dependably bad Adam Sandler and his gang reaching new lows in Grown Ups 2.

The worst films we saw, in comparison, were so small in scope that hardly misled anyone to watch them. Among them titles like Suspension of Disbelief; Maniac or Isabel Coixet’s latest Yesterday Never Ends (Ayer No Termina Nunca).

Among some bigger examples we found three notable wastes of a fine cast, Read the rest of this entry »

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2013 Film Review

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Although a few dissonant voices are now claiming the opposite, there’s a certain consensus on declaring 2013 a vintage year for cinema. And a quick look at what it has brought cannot but confirm that statement.

From the early months, when perhaps due to the gap created by the Olympic Year, a bigger than usual backlog of fine festival titles hit our screens gave that usually dry period a welcome qualitative boost. Critical favourites such as Romanian religious drama Beyond The Hills; Jeff Nichols’ Mississippi rites of passage tale Mud; Francois Ozon’s farcical In The House; Austrian miserabilist Ulrich Seidl’s notable Paradise Trilogy; controversy-friendly Harmony Korine with his hyper real look at teenage debauchery in Spring Breakers; Greta Gerwig and Noah Baumbach joyous portrait of arty,twentysomething New Yorkers hoping for a break in Frances Ha or the charming debut of Iran’s first female director with Wadjda, a censor-beating look at female inequality in Arab society, camouflaged under the deceptively simple story of a girl who defies the rules by saving to buy a bike. Read the rest of this entry »

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The 2013 Rober Awards Film Poll Spotify Playlist

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Two days to go for our 2013 Film Poll and, as a last minute recap for those of you who haven’t voted yet, here’s our Spotify playlists with highlights from (or in a few cases songs linked to) the soundtracks of most of this year’s nominated films.

Full playlist details, after the jump Read the rest of this entry »

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