If, like me, your knowledge of New Zealand cinema is limited to Peter Jackson and Taika Waititi, then Housebound will both delight and surprise you. I went into Housebound with zero knowledge of the plot, but you should know that it’s essentially a riddle wrapped in a mystery inside a red herring. Just when you think you’ve figured out what kind of movie it’s going to be, it turns into something else. Rather than being confusing, it makes the movie that much more fun to watch.
Even though it’s a movie that still feels fresh and influential, Beetlejuice came out almost a quarter of a century ago. It’s no secret that many of Tim Burton’s biggest fans feel like he hasn’t done anything in the last 20 years to rival it. Those people need to see Suburban Gothic immediately.
The cruelly and ironically titled Nothing Bad Can Happen is nothing less than a hard kick to the stomach. Katrin Gebbe’s debut isn’t a horror film, yet it still horrifies. Nothing Bad Can Happen stuns and unsettles the viewer like the also-incendiary debuts of Maury and Bustillo (À l’intérieur) or Du Welz (Calvaire), yet without the gore of the former and the surrealism of the latter.
By Tyler Hodg
In music, collaboration can often bring out the best in songwriters.The first offering from 3RDEYEGIRL features none other than Prince, who at this point is basically an honorary member of the band (4THEYEGIRLBOY?). Stylistically different than Art Official Age—Prince’s album featuring 3RDEYEGIRL which was released on the same day—Plectrumelectrum is a fairly straightforward rock album, with a few surprises sprinkled in. Ever wondered what Prince would sound with a hard rock band? Here’s your answer!
By Tyler Hodg
The ever-enigmatic Prince returns with not one, but two new albums with help from his friends in 3RDEYEGIRL. With the first of the two—Art Official Age—Prince’s ambitions were to incorporate creativity and artistic value back into music. He is able to achieve this, also revealing that there are no guidelines in music, despite what mainstream pop artists often deliver.
A couple of years ago my friend Jay handed me a disc with one word on it: Found. He said he saw it at a horror convention and it was something I would love. I watched Found that night and he was right.
How does writing an album on piano differ from writing an album with a guitar? For an answer, listen to indie/neo-folk singer Jen Wood’s new album, Wilderness. While her previous releases had been written on guitar, Wilderness is piano based and as a result, even at its quietest and most intimate, has a massive, almost filmic quality. The songs are deep and moving and meaningful, chronicling the last several years of her life.
On their fourth album, Charlottesville, Virginia outfit Sons of Bill (brothers Abe, James and Sam Wilson are literally, sons of Bill) return with glorious harmonies, thoughtful, literate lyrics, and some excellent musicianship. Produced by former Wilco drummer (and Grammy-nominated producer), Ken Cooner, Love & Logic is the sonic equivalent to wispy clouds scudding across a full moon. It’s arresting and loaded with hooks, but also at times deeply lonesome.
On their third album, Mended With Gold, The Rural Alberta Advantage continue to make hooky, emotion-heavy, often gorgeous, folk-ish music. There’s an epic quality to Mended With Gold that exists in the quiet moments of introspection in frontman Nils Edenloff’s songs: a feeling of space and loneliness, and a feeling of hope. It’s a really good record. I wish Friday Night Lights was still on, because these songs would be perfect soundtrack fodder.