Music

Best of 2007: Parkway Drive

Parkway Drive - HorizonsNot exactly unexpected, but it is hard to omit Parkway Drive from my year-end list because of their almost perfect blend of sheer brutality and deceptively gentle melody. In an almost harmonic form of destruction, this Byron Bay collective blow the roof off every joint they play and their latest record, Horizons, is the testament of their craft. Its melodic inclinations never overshadow the urgency of the record, and while they do harmonize, they never quite delve into the sugary tone of clean vocals and its all too similar trappings. Instead, they crank up the volume and infuse their brand of metalcore with traditional solos and song structures that result in 2007’s finest slab of ‘core. Growl!

You can listen to their music, as well as watch the video for “Boneyards” after the jump. You can also pick up Horizons via Amazon. Parkway Drive have lined up US dates for early next year with heavyweights Killswitch Engage, so if you’re in Continue reading

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Film News, Trailers, Videos

Trailer watch: Forgetting Sarah Marshall

Forgetting Sarah MarshallWhile the subject matter at hand is certainly no fun for anyone, the latest in Judd Apatow’s long list of Hollywood hits has the potential to rake in even more cash for his sure-to-be bursting bank account. Forgetting Sarah Marshall is a comedy starring Kirsten Bell (Veronica Mars, Gossip Girl) and that guy from How I Met Your Mother (no, the other guy) and tells the tale of the recently dumped trying to get over his ex (Bell). The wheels come off his escape plan when his holiday takes him to the same place his ex and her new flame are vacationing. Looks like a good time, but I wonder how long it will be before the Apatow well runs dry…

The film opens March 30, 2008. You can view the trailer after the jump. Continue reading

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Music

From the vault: Foundation (band)

FoundationBeing back in Indonesia has given me the chance to delve into all my old music that has for a while now, sat in big giant boxes collecting dust. While I’m here, I plan to pull out some old CDs and share tracks from some of my favorite releases of the past 10 years or so. Some rare, some not so, some seemingly lost in the obscure music abyss.

I start with a band that’s actually still around in one incarnation or another. Formally known as just Foundation, the band goes by The Foundation Band now and still features ex-Ann Beretta front man Rob Huddleston as its primary member (who I believe started it years ago as a side project).

Huddleston’s first full length release as Foundation was the self-titled 2001 effort on Fueled By Ramen (before the label went to shit) and while it’s discernibly rougher than their latest work, it exhibits the kind of optimistic, sometimes naive, but always poetic songwriting akin to the best Americana/rock has to offer. Some parts Mellencamp, some parts Springsteen, and some of that gritty Ann Beretta fire … all parts good. Check out some downloads after the jump. And if you can, pick up this seemingly forgotten CD from a record store somewhere (or from Amazon). Continue reading

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Music

Red Shore members killed in van accident

The Red ShoreAustralian metalcore act The Red Shore were involved in a tragic van accident overnight, leaving its lead singer and driver dead. The band were traveling to a Sydney show when their van skidded off the Pacific Highway in New South Wales and fell into a ditch. Lead singer Damo (22), and the band’s merchandiser/driver, Andy (27) were killed.

Melbourne newspaper The Age has reported that the band were traveling with American band All Shall Perish on the Christmas Carnage tour when the accident occurred. Tour promoter Destroy All Lines released a statement grieving the loss of their friends, but cited that All Shall Perish would in fact, play the scheduled Sydney show.

Our condolences to all involved.

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Music

Best of 2007: Mere Theory

Mere TheoryWhile a lot of the Australian bands I’ve talked about in 2007 (In Fiction, Horsell Common and so forth) tend to approach their craft with a more straight forward appeal, Adelaide’s Mere Theory draw more from America’s Midwest indie/emo scene that rose to popularity during the 90s. I’m not sure how happy they would be with that comparison but it’s hard to ignore the sound of early Get Up Kids and Boys Life, and to a certain extent, bands like Split Lip and The Casket Lottery in their music. The melodies slightly skewed, the riffs more angular, Mere Theory’s superb 2007 effort Catalan Atlas is a sparkling debut of a band that spent years honing their work before putting together a full length.

My favorite aspects of the record come from its melding of heavier post-hardcore motifs (like in the song “Vaccine”) with the gentler, more melodic inclinations of their predecessors (the single “Gracefully”). It boasts plenty of uniquely textured songs that forgo more conventional means of songwriting, mixing tempos, structures, and harmonies that keep the album fresh with each listen. It is why this album is one of my favorites of 2007.

Adelaide is far, far away from Kansas … but it seems that the city of churches boasts more similarities than one would expect. And for those who miss the early sound of the Get Up Kids should delve right into Catalan Atlas, you’ll feel Continue reading

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Film News, Trailers, Videos

Traile watch: Leatherheads

LeatherheadsI don’t think we’ve seen George Clooney ham it up on-screen since the Coen Brothers’ acclaimed O Brother, Where Art Thou? And after a slew of serious flicks (and all those Ocean films), Clooney returns to a less than serious role as one of the leads in Leatherheads; a drama/comedy about the early days of pigskin football.

I’ve always had an affinity for early 20th century America, and Leatherheads has plenty of it- the costumes, the culture, and in this case, those old fashioned football uniforms in which the film surely gets its name from. Leatherheads co-stars The Office’s John Krasinski (washing his mouth out after that horrid Robin Williams flick License to Wed), and the effervescent looking Renee Zellweger. The film looks like a riot, and you can view the trailer after the jump. Continue reading

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Film News, Trailers, Videos

Trailer watch: The Dark Knight

The new trailer for the much anticipated Batman Begins sequel, The Dark Knight, has made its way online.

The film stars a returning Christian Bale as Batman while newcomers Heath Ledger and Aaron Eckhart take the roles of The Joker and Harvey Dent respectively. The film is due July 18th, 2008. You can also download the trailer from here.

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