Resolution was the most unexpectedly intriguing movie of 2012 for me (review). The trailer was fascinating, but I had no idea what I was in for. I could say much the same about writer/director Justin Benson and co-director/cinematographer Aaron Moorhead. Their abilities at keeping an audience transfixed extended beyond the movie and into the intro and Q&A for Resolution at its Toronto After Dark screening.
Luckily, I was able to catch up with the pair a few days ago, in anticipation of Resolution‘s upcoming release on VOD and in theaters. Here’s what they had to say.
Justin: In general, when you make a movie and you make your own key art and you’re really happy with it, you then show it to the distributor who probably has their own ideas, which are very well placed: this is to sell it on VOD. And then you wait for months to get kicked in the balls, thinking it’s gonna be terrible. But we were so happy . . . nothing against horror movie posters, but it doesn’t look like a horror movie poster. There’s something very odd about the poster but it doesn’t look like a horror movie poster.
By Lisa Anderson
With vampires still abundant in popular culture, it’s hard to do anything new with the concept. Nashville Writer A. Jay Lee has managed to do so, however, with his Holy Damned series. The first book, Grace Through Blood, finds young Jamie Grace newly arrived in Charleston, South Carolina, where she finds new love and becomes embroiled in a very unusual community of vampires. The vampires are not the only supernatural beings in the story, either: Jamie herself can see people’s auras, and she and her new boyfriend Grant encounter shapeshifters and battle a vengeful demon as their pasts intersect in Charleston.
Lee has written an innovative, compelling book with a strong sense of place. He sat down recently to chat with me about the premise of the series, its future, and his inspirations.
By Less Lee Moore
Wayward Fire is the latest album from The Chain Gang of 1974, which is the brainchild of singer/songwriter/musician Kamtin Mohager. It’s an eclectic, intriguing, and downright addictive mix of influences and styles with some of the catchiest songs you’re likely to hear this year. (Read our review here.) I caught up with Kamtin when he was en route from the West to the East coast for the band’s upcoming tour dates with The Naked and Famous.
By Lisa Anderson
With electronic books pulling ahead of paper books in popularity, self-publishing is getting easier and easier. One of the pioneers on this new frontier is Dark Horse comics editor and Popshifter contributor Jemiah Jefferson. Jemiah and I met up over IM to discuss her recently self-published novel, Mixtape for the Apocalypse, as well as her previous work.
By Less Lee Moore
Allie Hughes is a singer-songwriter-musician from Toronto, Ontario, but those three words seem completely inadequate when describing her rather unique, original, and eclectic sound. Though there are only four songs on her debut EP, they are incredibly engaging, veering from theatrical to power pop, and from avant garde to introspective. And everywhere in between. I caught up with Ms. Hughes to find out what it is that inspires her and where she is headed next.
By John Lane
For the uninitiated, The High Llamas are an enduring band that emerged in the early ’90s. Sidestepping the twists and turns of the teenage-angst/grunge bandwagon propagated by the media because of Nirvana, the Llamas hoed their own row and followed the credo that sometimes a small sound can make its own huge explosion. They were armed with banjos, vibraphones, strings, and a savvy musical sensibility that embraced everything from Bacharach to Bizet.
I first came across the High Llamas circa 1997 when a friend of mine (knowing of my love of The Beach Boys’ Pet Sounds) asked me if I had heard of them. I didn’t, so he made me a tape copy of their album Hawaii, which I proceeded to play ad nauseum on a small General Electric radio/tape-player the night before a wedding. I was the groom’s best man, and after about ten listens of the epic album, he politely asked if I could spin something else. I grudgingly obliged, but can’t remember what the substitute was.
I was thrilled to get the chance to prod the brain of High Llama guitarist and songwriter Sean O’Hagan.
By Matt Keeley
I have been listening to Shonen Knife for literally half my life. I’m 30 now, so do the math! That being said, I’ve only been able to see them live twice: once on the Gokigen Tour in 2005, and recently for the new album Free Time. There’ve been line-up changes since the first time, but the sound is the same and just as good as it always was.
I was so thrilled to interview Shonen Knife before their show at the Tractor Tavern in Seattle—the first stop on the new US tour. I got to talk to all of them and ask Naoko Yamano about her songwriting, finding records in Japan when she was growing up, Japanese vs. English, writing about animals and food, and more, including the band’s recent experience playing in China. She even tells a scary story, seeing as it is the Halloween issue and all!
By Greta Pistaceci
I first came across Ergo Phizmiz a few years ago, though I am not exactly sure where—the British artist’s cover of the entirety of the Velvet Underground’s White Light/White Heat was available as a free download somewhere or other online (I have a feeling this was probably the WFMU blog, or one that might have linked to his personal website).
By Matt Demers
In the last issue of Popshifter, I had a chance to review London, Ontario rapper Shad’s third album, TSOL. Being a big fan of his, I jumped at the chance to talk to him at St. Catharine’s S.C.E.N.Efest, a primarily indie-and-metal music festival that takes over the town once a year in June. Though the rain loomed over our heads, Shad and I had a great conversation.
By Less Lee Moore
Recently we’ve been treated to new music from the venerable White Flag, an excellent EP called Keepers Of The Purple Twilight. Released on Target Earth in March of this year, all five songs are fantastic, featuring the White Flag hallmarks of clever, witty lyrics, which are often belied by hooky, but rocking tuneage.
One intriguing factor is that lyrically, the tunes are pretty introspective, perhaps pondering where a band like White Flag, who has been consistently making music but continually underrated over the years, fits into this weird world of American Idols and Justin Biebers.
If you haven’t been paying attention to White Flag, we’re here to help fill in those gaps for you. What follows is a conversation with singer, guitarist, songwriter, and main Flag-waver Pat Fear about the history of the band, including just a few of the “28 years of stories” he’s accumulated about punk rock, playing Greenland, The Shaggs, Os Mutantes, Gasatanka Records, and being the most connected band in the universe.