Category Archives: Opinion

Music to Your Ears – Kesha, The National, Cut Copy and Pink

Given that there was no podcast this past weekend due to the resonating effects of the Cars 3 debacle, I’ve thought long and hard about what’s to become of this if Cory never recovers from Pixar-related atrocities. Frequent guest James Milliron has suggested filling in for some time and discussing pop culture as a whole, and given the state of our country – something that’s been on our minds for a long time has been to discuss current events outside of entertainment. We do interject, after all, don’t we?

Let us know below if you think this might be a good way to go for the Interjections medium, as usual commenting responsibly. As for now, enjoy the latest edition of Music to Your Ears, which features the return of one of my favorite artists:

Continue reading Music to Your Ears – Kesha, The National, Cut Copy and Pink

Podcast August 4 – Dunkirk, Wakefield and Spider-Man

This week is a strange one, as one of the two main hosts was unavailable recovering from an unescapable illness. Luckily, frequent guest James Milliron was here to discuss recent war film Dunkirk, the latest epic from Christopher Nolan. It tells the tale of the beginning of World War II, as British troops are surrounded on all sides upon the beach closest to their homeland, with no traversable ships available to bring them there.

Tristan then regales Jimmy with his thoughts on the recent Spider-Man: Homecoming, as well as an indie character study starring Bryan Cranston as a fed-up New York lawyer who escapes his life by hiding in the garage across from his house, in Wakefield. In addition, Tristan saw a film from all the way back in 1991, The Indian Runner, which stars Viggo Mortensen in a star-making role as a broken Vietnam War vet who returns home to his cop brother David Morse only to find there’s not much left for him to do in life.

Happily there’s plenty more for you do today, such as listening in on the newest podcast below:

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Music to Your Ears – Arcade Fire, Lana Del Rey, and Julia Michaels

After that brief hiatus to the northern wonders of Iceland, I couldn’t bring myself to talk about any new music, as there was really only one new release of any note – Lana Del Rey’s Lust for Life. Given that it was a limited amount to discuss, I snuck that into this week, a much more diverse helping of singles and albums that we can delve into:

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Podcast July 28 – Valerian, To the Bone and The Lovers

With a burst of refreshed energy, Cory and Tristan return from the nordic wonderland that is Iceland, hoping to catch up on a few flicks they missed in the past two weeks.

First, Tristan takes us on two very disparate sci-fi journeys, one in Luc Besson’s grand masterpiece Valerian and the City of Planets, an eye-popping visual piece of candy, and the other a vaucuous post-apocalyptic introspection for ape king Caesar in the latest sequel War for the Planet of the Apes – now able to compare to Cory’s notes.

Cory, in the meanwhile, took in the newest Netflix film To the Bone, starring Lily Collins as an anorexic outpatient tended to by Keanu Reeves. He also saw the latest schlockfest from Bruce Willis, First Kill, which contains a surprisingly deft turn from fallen star Hayden Christensen. Another feature Cory saw was The Lovers, a spring indie release that has marvelous roles for Tracy Letts and Debra Winger.

Before all that, Tristan caught up on the past few years with two Best Picture nominees – Philomena (2013) and Lion (2016) – that share the theme of a parent or child finding their missing child or parent. He also saw The Immigrant, a lesser known film featuring Joaquin Phoenix as a grifter who prays on Polish newcomer Marion Cotillard in 1920s Greenwich Village.

So much to listen to, but entertain yourselves by clicking below:

As always, remember to comment responsibly!

Podcast July 14 – War for the Planet of the Apes, Despicable Me 3 and The Lost City of Z

Cory was full of new releases this week as he managed to get into the theater not once, but thrice:

Despicable Me 3 : This third entry in the now Minion dominated universe has several plotlines, most notably one where Gru (Steve Carell) discovers a long-lost brother (also Steve Carell), and another where he must do battle with a nefarious ’80s-themed villian Balthazar Bratt (Trey Parker).

The Lost City of Z : Robert Pattinson continues to shine in indie fare in this Fitzcarraldo-inspired adventure into the jungle, where Pattinson accompanies Charlie Hunnam into the wilds of the Amazon. Terrible fates await, but helmer James Grey has a deft hand at dark drama and adventure.

War of the Planet of the Apes : The third entry in the now Ape dominated universe has Caesar defending his people once again from a last ditch effort by humankind to eradicate, or at least seek vengeance on the monkeys who have overrun the Earth. The leader of the humans is Woody Harrelson, but Andy Serkis still steals the show in all his mo-cap glory.

Tristan, on the other hand, went old-school and had a trio of older films to talk about:

The In-Laws (1979) : Alan Arkin and Peter Falk star in this buddy comedy where Falk is an “FBI agent”, perhaps, or he may just be a crazy person that ropes his son’s new father-in-law into a madcap adventure down to Honduras to take out a dictator on the same weekend as their children’s wedding. A highlight in both actors’ careers.

Willard (1971) : Another film that was unfortunately remade in 2003, Bruce Davison finds that he has the power to control rats, namely Ben and Socrates, and forces them to attack people that piss him off, like Ernest Borgnine.

David and Lisa (1962): Before he couldn’t handle robots in space, Keir Dullea couldn’t handle people touching him. For that, he seeks refuge in an outpatient hospital outside of Philadelphia, under the watchful eye of future Ben Franklin Howard da Silva. While there, David (Dullea) meets a lovely young girl Lisa (Janet Margolin) who only communicates in rhymes.

Join us once again as we dive straight into the wonderful world of cinema, and remember – comment responsibly:

Music to Your Ears – HAIM, Wolf Alice and Kesha

Here we are, to start off the summer, and what a way to start – a whole slew of female-led bands, or singers to serenade us into the dead heat of July. We’ve got the newest from HAIM, Broken Social Scene, and three new tracks – a surprise from Kesha, and the latest from Wolf Alice and Cults!

HAIM – Something to Tell You

Four years ago, HAIM blew us away with their sensitive yet confident romance, their whimsical ’80s inspired pop telling us exactly what to expect: earnest yet endearing earworms for the forseeable future. In their second full-length album, the trio of sisters (their last name is the namesake) showcases their range, bringing several catchy tunes. In “You Never Knew” it appears that they branch out in to Fleetwood Mac standards, forcing a bit of a folk sound. They lyrics are at once both simplistic and complex, offering a vocabulary that belies their repetetive choruses. The true standout here is, and always has been, the girls’ vocals – Danielle leads the ship, while Este and Alana blend together like a Greek chorus of encouragement. While Danielle addresses the audience directly, her sisters are there to offer support when we fall off course, like sirens that mean to save us all.

Key Tracks: Right Now / Ready for You / Want You Back

Wolf Alice – “Don’t Delete the Kisses”

In a sort of understated version of HAIM, this mumblecore girl power group burst onto the scene around the same time, albeit in England. Several of their singles gained popularity across the pond on national public radio, where I managed to get my first wind of them. Since then, I’ve been eagerly anticipating a follow-up, one that can vault the band into a higher stratosphere. With “Don’t Delete the Kisses”, Wolf Alice has produced one of their sharpest songs yet, with a chorus that stabs you in the back, and then continues slicing its way through your insides. Singer Ellie Rowsell’s voice breaks as she, whispering, laments “And then I remember and I’m shy / That gossip’s eye will look too soon / And then I’m trapped, overthinking”. If HAIM is the subtly cheery answer to power pop, then Wolf Alice is their Negaduck.
Kesha – “Praying”

The past decade or so has been harrowing for Kesha Sebert, much more than many of us will ever realize. For the most part, the cherry on the sundae of her ordeals has been that the judge hearing her contract case ignored the fact that she wanted out of the deal with RCA because her producer Dr. Luke had also continually raped her. Just the idea that a victim would love to not be forced back together with such a monster was too much for the judge to comprehend, and thus we were helpless to watch one of our favorite artists stuck in a nightmare situation. Well, turning lemons into gold, Kesha has returned with one of her best songs to date.

Broken Social Scene – Hug of Thunder

Like a number of bands this year, it’s been a time of reunion. After seven years away from the Canadian pop world, the gang has returned to bestow upon us some more soothing protest pop. This time around, I think they’re the most fine-tuned I’ve heard an album. In the past, I feel some of their work was a tad disjointed, and I often found myself cherry picking different songs and placing them in various playlists, rather than listen the whole way here. Instead, after a majestic sunrise of an opening song in “Sol Luna”, the production in Hug of Thunder continues throughout, starting with with of the peppiest songs I’ve heard from Kevin Drew before, “Halfway Home”. There are certainly downtime songs, ones to chill out too, but there is an undercurrent of rage beneath the smooth tidings. Whether there’s something affecting them from south of the border or whether it’s just that age-old aging problem, this is definitively the most mature album from BSS, which is the most surprising thing of all after this much time.

Key Tracks: Stay Happy / Protest Song / Halfway Home

Cults“Offering”

One of my favorite bands of the past decade, I spent the latter part of 2011 heavily enamored with several tracks from Cults’ debut album, including “Go Outside”, “You Know What I Mean” and “Never Heal Myself”. Two years later, the duo debuted Static, which by any means would not be a sophomore slump (though critically it appeared so, and even by my high standards, it was not oft repeated). That underrated album deserves another listen, of course, and especially now that the band is preparing to send us another Offering. The title track is the first to be heard, and while it bares several hallmarks of that latter album, it’s always a good thing to see a band grow. “Offering” is fairly slow, but it illuminates singer Madeline Follin’s eerily soothing vocals. Rest assured, there will undoubtedly be more uptempo instrumentals to come, but I bet the pair just wanted to ease us back into their welcome arms.

 


Well, that’s all for now, folks. Looking ahead to next week, I may be taking another hiatus – as Cory and I will be traveling to the nordic wonderland that is Iceland. We’ll likely be at least slipping in a podcast this weekend before we go, but with only really one semi-interesting release this Friday (Coldplay’s Kaleidoscope EP) I plan on pushing Music to Your Ears back a week. That will find us with new releases from Lana Del Rey, Foster the People, and some likely surprises!

Podcast July 7 – The Beguiled, The Little Hours and Okja

After we all collectively celebrated the 241st birthday of our crumbling country, a handful of cinephiles convened on cinemas nationwide to see a film that showcased a time when the people of America were actually split apart.

We at Interjections saw The Beguiled, a remake of the Clint Eastwood Southern gothic film from 1971. Sofia Coppola guides this version with a steady hand, reimagining Colin Farrell in the role of the wounded Union soldier finds himself in a woman’s boarding school run by Nicole Kidman and Kirsten Dunst. Elle Fanning contributes with another patent crazy vixen role.

Our special guest Kris joins Cory in his review of Cars 3 – waxing poetic about the majestic Pixar franchise as a whole. Here Lightning McQueen faces the most difficult challenge of his life – old age. Will Mater muck up the proceedings? Probably.

Speaking of old age, Tristan took in another recent indie film, the Jeff Baena helmed adaptation of The Decameron, The Little Hours, starring Alison Brie, Aubrey Plaza and Kate Micucci as conflicted nuns living in a convent run by John C. Reilly and Molly Shannon. Dave Franco pulls his best Colin Farrell impression and hides in the convent as their gardener when he gets in trouble with his serf (Nick Offerman).

Kris brings us both a review of the Will Ferrell-Amy Poehler comedy The House, which has an amazing premise where the pair, finding themselves struggling to pay their daughter’s college tuition, naturally decide to open an underground casino in their basement. Will this redeem the surprisingly unfunny 2017 slate of comedies?

She also brings an overall review of the recent smash hit from Hulu, The Handmaid’s Tale, where Elisabeth Moss must discover what a woman’s true purpose is under the evil regime of Joseph Fiennes and other corrupt men.

Finally, Cory finishes off the week with the latest Netflix oddity – Bong Hoon-jo’s Okja, where Tilda Swinton pulls double-duty yet again as an evil capitalist attempting to turn a human-crafted giant pig into her newest bacon supply. ET be damned, the South Koreans really know how to tug at the heartstrings!

All this and some trailers, if you click on Aubrey Plaza below:

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