Best Songs of 2016

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My choices for the best songs of the year have been handily compiled into this Spotify playlist. They’re not in any real order but they’re somewhat themed by genre so that the playlist flows. I’ve decided to include only one song per artist, no matter how transcendent their 2016 output. Full disclaimer: I haven’t properly listened to either album by the Knowles sisters (don’t kill me).

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Ryley Walker – The Halfwit In Me

Kendrick Lamar – untitled 05 09.21.2014

Kanye West – Famous

Frank Ocean – Solo

Anderson .Paak – The Dreamer

Maxwell – Lake By The Ocean

Tkay Maidza – Carry On

Chance The Rapper – All Night

Santigold – Banshee

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Montaigne – In The Dark

The Avalanches – Subways

Japanese Breakfast – Everybody Wants To Love You

Mitski – My Best American Girl

Frankie Cosmos – If I Had A Dog

Weaves – Tick

PJ Harvey – Ministry Of Defence

Big Scary – Organism

Middle Kids – Edge Of Town

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Angel Olsen – Sister

King Gizzard and the Lizard Wizard – Mr. Beat

Japandroids – Near To The Wild Heart Of Life

Car Seat Headrest – Vincent

Radiohead – Burn The Witch

Nick Cave & The Bad Seeds – Girl In Amber

Sturgill Simpson – Welcome To Earth (Pollywog)

Rogue One Review

*May contain mild spoilers*

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I’m not an obsessive Star Wars fan by any margin and I’m no expert when it comes to the minutiae of the expansive mythology of the Star Wars universe, but I think even hardcore fans of the series would tell you that Rogue One does very little to build upon the far reaching narrative that started in Episode I and that’s being continued in Episode VII and VIII and beyond. Of course, as a standalone film, this shouldn’t matter as long as the story it tells is a compelling one. But the biggest sin this film commits is that it doesn’t justify its existence as an engaging piece of entertainment, making it no more than a ‘good-enough’ corporately mandated cash grab.

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Top 25 Albums of 2015

Let’s face it, 2014 was a pretty awful year in music. 2015 may have been a top-heavy affair but there were gems sprinkled throughout. This list is mostly an update of my half yearly list with some new additions and rearrangements.

25-11 (in alphabetical order)

Beach House – Depression Cherry

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The first of 2 albums Beach House released this year, Depression Cherry sneaks ahead mostly for the unexpected and welcome shredding on single ‘Sparks’.

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Top 20 albums of 2015 (so far)

It’s that time of year again where I claim that albums I listened to for the first time last week are destined to become future classics and where I very quickly run out of adjectives to describe simple musical terms.

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When Marnie Was There

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**Minor spoilers below**

When Marnie Was There follows Anna (Hailee Steinfeld in the English dub) who, due to suffering from increasingly severe social anxiety and depression, is sent away to her Aunt and Uncle’s countryside house over the summer for some fresh air and a change of scenery. While there she becomes transfixed by an old house overlooking the marsh and the golden-locked-girl who resides there, Marnie (Mad Men‘s Kiernan Shipka).

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It Follows Review

It-Follows-car Can a horror movie get by on atmosphere and filmmaking chops alone? It Follows answers that question with a resounding, ‘yes, kinda’.

The movie follows a young college student Jay (Maika Monroe), who after sleeping with a new boyfriend (Jake Weary) is tied up by said boyfriend and told that he passed something onto her, a curse of sorts. She will be followed by a shape shifting creature that can take the form of anyone. It walks and it follows, and if it catches you, you die. Continue reading

Game of Thrones – 5×01: The Wars To Come

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‘The future is shit, just like the past’ says our favourite imp before throwing up his wine all over his host’s lovely outdoor patio. So begins Season 5 of Game of Thrones. And yes, the world has gone to shit, but that’s a pretty constant state in Westeros. With Tywin dead, there is absolutely no political stability in the seven kingdoms. I mean, when Stannis has the most power in the kingdoms, then you know things have gone sour. But there’s still hope. After all, Tyrion takes another swig. Death by wine is a long, slow process and before he dies he may be able to influence a changing of the tides. Continue reading