VultureHound - Issue 4
The 2014 VultureHound Awards with Christmas special.
Vulturehound Vulturehound.com December 2014 - ISSUE 4 VH 2014 AWARDS Album, ARTists, Festivals, FILM, TV and MORE “file it under “Experimental,” “Electronic,” and “Face-Bashing All-Out Guitar Assault.” Because that’s what you’ll be getting on this deliciously and intriguingly diverse disc. …it just gets better the deeper I listen” - Hypnagogue Reviews “a unique and distinctive sound” - mfiles review “engrossing recordings; uncluttered and atmospheric” - Morpheus Music Reviews “Similar to dangerous narcotics, you’ll find yourself addicted before you know it” - Sonoloco OUT NOW! Available on iTunes and Amazon, and distributed through Naxos of America HELLO. It’s the end of the year, so time for us to look back and celebrate the best of what 2014 had to offer. We’ve looked back at our favourite music, film and TV from the past year for the VultureHound 2014 Awards. As a few people at VultureHound have been a bit excited about Christmas since around Summertime... we couldn’t go without a little Christmas section with playlists, upcoming TV shows and (somehow it always gets in) horror. VultureHound has had a great year with some fantastic new writers joining us andfinally seeing us release the first magazine after a couple years as a website. I’d like to take this opportunity to thank everyone who has been involved with the site and the magazine and hope to continue producing some exciting words and works. Merry Christmas and Happy New Year Everyone! visit our website for daily updates VultureHounD Editorial David Garlick Editor / Design email@example.com Lee Hazell TV Editor firstname.lastname@example.org Michael Dickinson Film Editor email@example.com Kimberley Bayliss Live Editor kimberley.bayliss@vulturehound. co.uk Writers Sarah Carter Samantha Hawxwell Bradley Lengden Shane Bayliss Michael Jones Gemma Voakes-Pearson Advertising To discuss advertising in the next issue or on the website please contact firstname.lastname@example.org Social twitter.com/vulturehound facebook.com/vulturehound David Garlick, Editor @DavidGarlick Feedback We want to improve every issue so if you have any feedback please email us on: email@example.com Contribute VultureHound.com We’re always looking for new people to get involved, get in touch for a chance! firstname.lastname@example.org @vulturehound search ‘vulturehound’ @vulturehound Connect with us @vulturehound search â€˜vulturehoundâ€™ @vulturehound Like to see your ad here? Contact email@example.com VH 2014 AWARDS + + + + Album of the year ARTIST OF THE YEAR Festival of the year TV OF THE YEAR + + + + FILM OF THE YEAR ACTOR OF THE YEAR ACTRESS OF THE YEAR Person OF THE YEAR And the winners are... Album of t h e y ea r VH 2014 AWARDS 10 Beck - Morning Phase 9 Sia - 1000 Forms of Fear Pianos Become The Teeth Keep Yo u hen Pianos Become The Teeth released a snippet of their latest work Keep You it was like listening to a completely different band. It was something on a whole other platform than what fans were used to. But was the shift into this new style successful for the band? The answer is a resounding, unequivocal yes. The transition into this new, more mellow style has been made almost effortlessly. It sounds like the band have been making music like this since their formation, something incredible when taking into account just how massive a change it is. Everything about the album sounds so measured; every pluck of a string is premeditated; even the almost unnoticeable clicks of drumsticks, echoing slowly under the pauses in ‘Repine’ sound like they have been considered to aid the track. The signature instrumental 5 8 Catfish and the Bottlemen The Balcony W interludes have not been lost in the changeover either. There are still these beautifully dark, atmospheric lulls that link up sections in tracks in incredible fashion. They’ve been utilised in this new mature fashion, and with no disrespect to their previous work, which has always been great, this just seems like a more grown up record. It’s impossible not to admire what the lads have done in trying something new, undoubtedly it’s some way out of what would be considered their comfort zone, but to nail it on their first attempt is only a further testament to their abilities as musicians and songwriters. For all these reasons, PBBT have rightfully earned a place in our top 5 albums of the year. 7 You Me At Six - Cavalier Youth 6 Band of Skulls - Himalayan VH 2014 AWARDS VH 2014 AWARDS Festival of the year LeeFest LeeFest is one of those great pocket sized festivals that has so much more to offer than music. You could say the same for any festival sure, but LeeFest goes the extra mile. There are dance lessons, silent disco’s, a retro gaming jam and loads more. But the best thing about LeeFest is the relaxed atmosphere that they’ve expertly and effortlessly cultivated. Against Me! Transgender Dysphoria Blues 4 F rom the start of TDB, it’s clear that this album is heartfelt, honest and raw. “You want them to notice. The ragged ends of your summer dress. You want them to see you. Like they see any other girl. They just see a faggot “ In 2012 Against Me! lead singer Thomas Gabel announced to the world that he had been dealing with transgender dysphoria since childhood, and would be making the transition to become Laura Jane Grace. Transgender Dysphoria Blues is the first album since Grace’s “coming out” and it is clear that the subject is something Grace and the band want and even need to discuss. The album still contains Against Me’s usual middle finger toting anarchic political punk rock in tracks such as Osama Bin Laden as the Crucified Christ, but it is in the honest and truthful tracks such as Talking Transgender Dysphoria Blues, Unconditional Love and Fuckmylife666 that this album comes alive. The songs where Grace write about her life, come across as a diary entry and you feel as though you are going through everything with her. Against Me! have always been a band that write well rounded songs, but the new Against Me! seem to be on a different level. As a band they seem more unified than ever, and they have also found a new fan-base with those who both identify with Grace and also those who respect her. Transgender Dysporia Blues isn’t so much an album of the year, but an album of a generation. A generation of men and women, who are empowered to be themselves and realise they are not alone. OCToBER 2o14 VultureHound 25 VH 2014 AWARDS VH 2014 AWARDS TV Actor of the year Kevin spacey HOuse of cards Netflix gave Kevin Spacey and the production company behind House of Cards free reign to do things however they saw fit. Spacey in return gave an incredible performance. A top five performance in the career of a top five actor. His sneaking, slithering snake of a Vice President is as repellent as he is compelling. The fact that he makes you believe that a man like this could exist within The White House makes him one of the most terrifying villains of all time. Catch House of Cards exclusively on Netflix Royal Blood Royal blood he rise of Royal Blood in 2014 has been monumental. With their debut album rocketing to the top of the album charts and raking in critical acclaim across the board, Royal Blood have undoubtedly hit their stride this year, and their debut has certainly helped to propel them into a place where they’re adored by music fans across the globe. A rock band to be reckoned with, Royal Blood provided us with some much needed loud and proud guitar music that, despite having been lumped in with artists like Jack White, remains thoroughly refreshing. Their debut self-titled album is an effortless mosaic of riffs and well-constructed indie-rock bangers. The Brighton born duo has secured a niche area of rock and roll to set up camp, where they can provide 3 music that is fluid, electrifying and absorbing. Royal Blood as an album strikes an elegant balance between dark and heavy rock and roll and an element of careful, bluesy lightness, setting them apart from contenders in a field that is widely considered to be slowly and painfully dying out. Royal Blood prove to the cynics that rock music can and will endure. Influenced by bands like Queens of the Stone Age and having indie gods Arctic Monkeys as makeshift mentors, it’s no surprise that Royal Blood have been fated to a successful musical career from the word go and one can only hope that they continue to do so. It’s pure and simple rock music with no strings attached. And in an age of computer based, manufactured drivel, what more could you ask for? T VH 2014 AWARDS VH 2014 AWARDS TV Actress of the year Sarah Lancaster Happy Valley Sarah Lancashire has come a long way from Raquel of Coronation Street. I didn’t think I could like her again after she left Curly like that for the horrible Des. No matter, since then she has been redeeming herself left and right. But her roles in such shows as Oliver Twist and Last Tango in Halifax have been mere practice for her harrowing part in Happy Valley. A title with all the subtle irony of a red flashing casino sign. Happy Valley takes place in a rural Yorkshire valley, a place riddled with drugs and prostitution. She plays a cop whose daughter committed suicide and she’s obsessed with putting away the man who drove her to it behind bars. Sarah’s character constantly looks like she’s been defeated by the people around her and the misery they create. She’s masterful in the role but not to be understated is Sally Wainwright’s beautifully written script. St Vincent St Vincent e’re not fans of self titled albums, especially when it’s not your first. But St Vincent’s eponymous 4th studio album is just brilliant and deserving of 2nd place in our album of the year. 2 too from the fast paced “Digital Witness” to the introspective “Every Tear Disappears”. There’s a lot of powerful, emotional moments in the album as well as some quirky, off-kilter lyrics that never feel forced. The writing is lyrical poetry and comes across as genuine. St Vincent is a powerful stage presence live too and this is never more evident than in “I Prefer Your Love to Jesus”, which is a work of genius. Gentle, yearning, achingly sad and filled with clashing, contrasting emotions it’s the albums stand-out track and is worthy of being the big song in a movie soundtrack. There’s a lot of chaos in the album but it’s all chaos with a purpose and the closer you inspect it you realise that it’s not chaos at all. It’s just that she’s probably smarter than you are. Go listen now.... W Referencing musical influences as far apart as 80’s icons like Kate Bush and Cyndi Lauper all the way to hipster-nouveau cool like Sufjan Stevens, the album is packed with ideas. On first listen St Vincent seems clever, perhaps a bit knowing and really quirky. But there’s a lot of complex depth to the album that rewards repeat listens. There’s a wide range of styles, themes and approaches and it ranges from the bizarre poppy “Birth in Reverse” to the funky “Huey Newton” to yearning, gloomy “Prince Johnny”. Things range in terms of tempo OCToBER 2o14 VultureHound 25 2 0 14 A l b u m o f t h e y ea r 1 ! R E W I NN Jamie T Carry on the grudge VH 2014 AWARDS VH 2014 AWARDS F ive years was a long time eh? That’s how long it’s been since we last got a Jamie T album. This year he returned with the phenomenal ‘Carry On The Grudge’, a record that had a lot to live up to given his impressive back catalogue and huge cult following. You could have been forgiven for being a bit sceptical, there was an air of ambiguity prior to its release due to the deafening silence coming from the Treays camp. Thankfully however, any nerves were quickly put to bed, it was clear Jamie was back, and in a big way, so much so that his newest bit of work has been awarded our best album of 2014. The album signals a change of pace for Jamie, let’s not forget he was 24 when we last got material from him, he’s closer to 30 now, it wouldn’t be fair to expect the same angsty fast paced style all the way through. Things change with age, song writing isn’t immune from the changes that are part of growing up, something which is clearly evident in “Carry on the Grudge” What we do get, is more of a variation. On one part there are these beautifully slowed down, melody driven tracks that are unlike anything heard from Jamie before. Tunes like “Limits lie”, “Don’t you find” and “The Prophet” make full use of his unmistakable, almost lazy vocals for these sombre, goose bump inducing pieces. There are definitely still elements of that robust charm that has found Jamie so much success in his past work. The single “Zombie” probably being the most bouncy, radio friendly snippet of the album. However “Peter” is the one that recaptures the ruggedness of old, it has the edginess that Jamie T has always been about, it’s more an intense pissed off narrative of his alter ego rather than a song, There’s more of a clever subtlety to the whole thing than his first two records, the generally downbeat ultra stripped back tone of the record mixed with a worn coarseness in Treay’s voice perfectly captures the struggles of addiction and love, which is brought to a fitting end in the haunting “They told me it rained”, almost a desperate plea for affection, as the chorus of “just show me love, just show me love” rings throughout until it slowly peters away and fades to this melancholy ending. The record is a clear signal Jamie T has more tools in his arsenal than any of us could have expected, it displays a gathered maturity that he has acquired in his 5 years out of the game, the experiences he’s gained have clearly had an effect on his song writing. It’s been a long time coming, and the fact he has so easily come back and conquered with a completely new style is a massive testament to his raw talent, for that, he more than deserves the accolade of album of the year. Agree or Disagree with our list? Let us know on our Twitter or Facebook @VultureHound Artist of the year St Vincent The album What a year for Annie Clark. goes here album dd (2nd With an amazing in our Album of the Year), klsdfsdfj l The electric live shows and briefly album goes here become the lead singer of a reformed Nirvana with Dave dd klsdfsdfj Grohl and Krist Novoselic. St lVincent Thehas album deservedly been voted VultureHound’s Artist of goes here dd the Year. klsdfsdfj l We feel we’re seeing an artist at what appears to be the peak of her powers so go buy the album and whatever you do, experience St Vincent live. OCToBER 2o14 VultureHound 25 Film of t h e y ea r 5 Under the skin Despite being entirely Earth bound Jonathan Glazer managed to create an alien feel to his oddroad trip movie. An unnerving soundtrack mixed with a perfectly pitched performance by Scarlet Johansson compliments the stark visuals. Slow moving for some. Preposterous for others. It does feel a times like Ken Loach does sci-fi which only adds to the beauty of the more considered visuals. It’s a bold film to make by anyone’s standards. Particularly with an A-Lister involved. VH 2014 AWARDS 4 20,000 Days on Earth The myth of Nick Cave is kept alive and well by the man himself. Joining him on an abstract “day-inthe-life” we are privy to a number of insights on the artist. How many of these are fabrications is for Cave to know. What does come across though is a fascinating insight into the workings of the creative mind that never stops ticking. A must for Cave fans. A must for those looking to find some creative fire. Re-release of the year: Wake in Fright (1974) VH 2014 AWARDS Comedy Performance of the year Will Arnett –BoJack Horseman Say things fast enough and they will seem witty, intelligent and funny, even if they aren’t. It’s a style Arnett takes to gloriously. His nonchalance at the despair going on around him fits the machine gun style of the show perfectly. But his comic demeanour comes from deep insecurity and crippling selfloathing, reminding us that the best comedy isn’t steeped in irreverence but born out of tragic circumstance. Catch House of Cards exclusively on Netflix 3 Gone Girl A rare thing indeed, a blockbuster thriller that manages to be creepy, compelling and funny in equal amounts. David Fincher’s impeccable attention to detail brings more weight to the pulpy source material. Ben Affleck and Rosamund Pike deliver career defining performances and Trent Reznor and Atticus Ross turn in another pitch perfect soundtrack. Yeah, the second half gets a bit weird but that’s what makes it fun. 2 The Raid 2 No one expected The Raid, the most awesome action film of 2012. No one expected The Raid 2 to quite so sprawling and epic as it is. The plot is blown wide open, this time resembling the deep undercover world of Infernal Affairs rather than the one location action of the first film. With choreography and camera work unequaled in action cinema this is now the benchmark to compare all action films too. ! R E NN I W VH 2014 AWARDS The Lego movie W a rn er B ro s ho would have thought it? A movie based on childrenâ€™s toys would amount to the most entertaining film of the year (Transformers the Movie did achieve that feet in 1986 though). It has a script that is the right side of willfully silly. Directors Phil Lord and Christopher Miller continue their streak of subversive but welcoming humour and have created an all-round family film that appeals to children and adults equally. The film looks glorious too, each Lego world is fully realized and endlessly enjoyable to 1 look at, so much so that it requires repeat viewings just to take in all the visual puns and multi-coloured details in. The voice cast are on top form. Chris Pratt showing that he is the current king of everyman hero. Whilst Liam Neeson manages his best performance in years as Good Cop, Morgan Freeman gets to put his wisely old man patter to good use and Elizabeth Banks continues to be the finest straight actor/comedian working. Perhaps the most bizarre cliff hanger ending sets things up delightfully for the proposed sequel. With much to explore in the Lego universe, if it can remain at this quality a continuing franchise is something we can all get excited about. The film should also be noted for featuring the finest sequence in cinema this year with Benny the 80s space rangerâ€™s delirious action scene as he finally gets to build his SPACESHIP! W TV of t h e y ea r VH 2014 VH 2014 AWARDS AWARDS 5 Well this series has certainly made an impression. Only a few episodes in and our writers can’t get enough of it. With a punchier pace than the previous two series, the action quota in Season 5 has shot up after fans were complaining that the series had become static and stagnant. Looks like The Walking Dead is back to its best. 4 Cannibalism and flesh eating Zombies? Huh. Seems to be a trend going around in the VH collective. I really should feed them better. The newest series of Hannibal is as epic and operatic as the last. Just like the epics and classics in highbrow theatre it seeks to imitate, Hannibal left reality long ago and has no desire to return. It belongs in the realm of the great insane melodramas. Tv person of the year The walking dead Hannibal JOHN OLIVER John Oliver’s middle English accent and irreverent progressive message has often put me in mind of an anarchist with a burning torch in one hand and a cup of tea in the other. It’s a style he’s taken to every one of his satirical outputs including The New York Stand Up Show, The Decline of the American Empire and The Bugle which he hosts with long-time partner Andy Zaltzman. When Jon (with no “h”) Stewart went off to film his directorial debut in the summer of 2013, John (with one “h”) that took up the helm of The Daily Show. His run was lauded by critics and embraced by viewers. Something about that accent really makes people sit up and pay attention. Some were even talking of Jon backing away to pursue other projects while Mr. Oliver took the host gig full time. But Jon wasn’t backing away from his baby any time soon and Oliver wasn’t destined to 3 Parks and recreation The funniest series of the year according to Vulture Hound is Parks and Recreations. To be fair to the competion, when your program is filled with talent like Amy Poehler, Aziz Ansari, Nick Offerman, Rashida Jones, Aubrey Plaza and Chris Pratt you’d have to do something pretty special to make it crap. As it stands, Parks and Rec is one of the defining comedy programs of our generation. 2 Mad Men Mad Men, simply put, is iconic. In an age where the internet has destroyed the idea of general consensus, Mad Men has risen above all (well, most) to be seen as one of the greatest television programs of the generation considered to be televisions Golden Age. The style, the romance of the period and, most importantly, the writing, has made this program one of the best in the world. stay in another man’s shadow. He was headed for bigger and better things. HBO came knocking on his door. It’s easy to think of Last Week Tonight as a sparser version of The Daily Show. A well-dressed host talking to the camera, taking shots at big business and politicians, expressing a progressive viewpoint and making everyone laugh at the most depressing of world developments. But it is its own show. Where the Daily Show informs, Last Week Tonight is a constant call to action. In the past weeks Oliver has encouraged his sizable audience to write to their representatives, make their voices heard on social media and film YouTube videos of Supreme Court cases with cute little animals in place of the Judges. The fact that it is incredibly funny is paramount. Because, even though this is one of the most important programs of the decade so far, it is nothing if it cannot be funny. Like every great satirist, John Oliver knows that humour disarms and if you want people to take on your world view you need to do it when their defences are down. And because of John Oliver’s pioneering work as a great satirist in this show, he is our Television Personality of the Year. Catch Last Week Tonight on Sky Atlantic + download The Bugle Podcast from iTunes W I NN E R ! GAME of thrones (Season 4) hbo ame Of Thrones is perhaps the most consistently great of all our favourite TV shows. There is no “bad” season. Season 4 lives up to that incredible accolade. But consistency doesn’t just get you to the top of this list. You need brilliance as well. Your writing must be intelligent, thought provoking and gripping, without being forced or contrived. Your actors must captivate the attention of their audience with gravitas, but they must also draw sympathy when vulnerable. Your storytelling must create tension and a sense of empathy between character and audience. Game of Thrones does all this and puts it into one of the most grandiose Television Spectacles ever to grace the small screen. On top of that, the faith they show to the original material is staggering. It’s a testament to George R R Martin’s original books that these tales of fantasy and dragons found such a place in the collective conscience of a populace usually unwilling to enter 1 G such fanciful realms. It can only help that the plot revolves around not magic and monsters, but by the human drama of war and conflict. One of the TV events of the year, every year, Season 4’s finale had some work to do to compare to the cataclysmic end of Season 3, the infamous Red Wedding. Our very own Lord Harry of House Molyneux said this of Season 4’s final episode The Children. “This finale was perhaps the largest single play in the Game of Thrones TV universe. So many pieces either moved entirely or were completely struck from the board that it’s a wonder the episode flowed as smoothly as it did. Often this program is strongest when, rather than diverting your attention from one character to a next, it’s laser focused in on one story line, like last week’s huge battle. This episode did not; this episode proved the power of the finale.” Powerful stuff indeed. It’s why Game of Thrones is Vulture Hound Magazine’s TV show of the year. The 10 worst Christmas number ones of all time Vulturehound Christmas Special 10 Benny Hill - Ernie (The Fastest Milkman In The West) (1971) Managing to be one of David Cameron’s selections on Desert Island Discs this innuendo fuelled comedy song follows a milkman’s attempts to win the heart of a widow before coming to his untimely death during a duel for her love which ends in a rock cake to the heart and pork pie in the eye. Some would say similar to Shakespeare, most would not. 9 St Winifred's School Choir - There's No One Quite Like Grandma (1980) St Winifred’s, a primary school based in Stockport, managed to get to number one in both Ireland and the UK for two weeks, knocking ‘(Just Like) Starting Over’ by John Lennon to number two. Listening to this gives the equivalent feeling that you get after eating too much sweet desserts on Christmas Day. illustratration: David Garlick 42 VultureHound September 2014 8 Bob The Builder - Can We Fix it? (2000) Although we can be grateful that this song managed to stop Westlife’s ‘What Makes A Man’ from becoming a Christmas number one, the fact this was the biggest selling single of the year will always haunt the music industry and is something that definitely can never be fixed. 5 Jimmy Osmond - Long Haired Lover From Liverpool (1972) The music video for this could quite easily be turned into a modern horror movie revolving around a demonic little child in a stripy Christmas jumper. I doubt Santa dared to visit the Jimmy Osmond’s room until after he’d hit puberty. 2 Band Aid 20 - Do They Know It's Christmas? (2004) There’s no better feeling at Christmas than being told you should feel guilty for enjoying yourself when other’s can’t. Yes, this is for a great cause, but poverty is just as likely to be eradicated without Bono whining and Dizzee Rascal rapping. 7 Mr Blobby - Mr Blobby (1993) There was never really been an explanation for the fact a rather terrifying pink and yellow bow tie wearing creature who was best friend’s with Noel Edmonds managed to get to number one, until the X Factor started and we begged for Mr Blobby to return. 4 Gary Jules - Mad World (2003) Arguably a great song, just not for a Christmas number one. When most children are dreaming about presents and food on Christmas Eve a young Gary Jules was only happy dreaming about death, not somebody you particularly want round your Christmas Dinner table. The worst Christmas number one of all time 1 6 Shayne Ward - That's My Goal (2005) Instead of a whole new article on the top worst X Factor Christmas number ones just substitute any of the others in here yourself. No explanation needed. 3 Dickie Valentine - Christmas Alphabet (1955) Unless Dickie Valentine had such a drug fuelled Christmas that he forgot 17 letters, he should probably rename this song to Christmas Pointlessly Spelt Out Loads of Times. Cliff Richard - Mistletoe and Wine (1988) Having been banned from all Costa Coffee chains after being voted the most despised Christmas song in Britain this wasn’t Sir Cliff’s finest hour. However with three other Christmas number ones under his belt I doubt he’ll be too devastated. Christmas Films: How to Solve Them Words: Sam Hawxwell Yes Christmas films are usually lovely and soppy, they fill your heart with warmth blah blah blah... but seriously? Who believes this crap that is pushed down your throat every year? Merry Christmas. Christmas TV: What to Watch Home Alone Solved! Man Down So, you have fifty odd kids... fine, fair do’s, if you forget to pack one of their lunches for school one day then that is forgivable. But forgetting to take one on holiday with you? Horrific. How about doing a head count? This film could have been so much easier if the mother asked “Where’s Kevin?” as soon as she got in the car and realised that all her children weren’t present. Greg Davis is a very busy man this Christmas. Not only will he be the aggrieved dad in Cuckoo, but he’s also the man child in Man Down. This special will give us a better idea as to how the show will adapt to the untimely and tragic death of the legendary British comic talent of Rik Mayall, who played Greg’s father. It was said he was to have a more prominent role in the series after the positive reaction to his character in the first. Truth be told, it was fantastic to see a show where he was back at his best, after spending years in TV exile. So sad that he was taken after finally being back, centre stage, where he belonged. Jonathan Strange + Mr Norrell The Grinch Magic is in the air on the BBC as the Booker shortlisted novel by Susanna Clarke is adapted for Christmas. The novel itself was a love letter to English literature, employing several tropes and styles from the Gothic and Romantic genres and mimicking such writers as Byron and Austen. How a visual adaptation will capture the magic of a book whose pleasures are so firmly rooted in the written word I do not know, but I will be fascinated to find out. By far and away my most anticipated drama this season. Solved! You find a little green hairy baby, in a tree, during a swinging party? Send it to the authorities, or just yes... send him up to live in that hill and do not invite him down to be cheer meister. He’s big, he’s green, and if that dude walked into your town you would not give him a christmas jumper and try to steal his girlfriend. Leave the poor guy alone. Dr Who Steven Moffatt, perhaps the most successful writer on the BBC books at the moment, pens this latest adventure. As usual with this show, any event – or even just new episode – has the rumour mill buzzing like a draw full of dildos. One such confirmed rumour will see Nick Frost appear, although no one knows if he will be friend or foe. Moffatt had this to say about this exciting development “Frost at Christmas - it just makes sense! I worked with Nick on the Tintin movie many years ago and it’s a real pleasure to lure him back to television for a ride on the TARDIS. ” One unconfirmed story floating about though, is if this will or won’t be the last appearance of Doctor’s assistant Jenna Coleman. 36 VultureHound OCToBER 2o14 Photo: BBC/Adrian Rogers Muppets Christmas Carol Solved! Adam Buxton Loves... Christmas We love Adam Buxton here at Vulture Hound. Our very own Kimberly Bayliss interviewed him in the last issue which everyone should go and check out right now if you haven’t already. Adam himself though loves Christmas. Apparently. He loves it so much that on Sky Arts this season he’s dedicated an hour to giving everyone a guide to the most festive season of the year. The joy he puts into all of his works is one of the reasons that Adam Buxton is so likeable and if you consider how happy he is the rest of the year you can only imagine how infectiously enthusiastic he gets for the happiest time of all. Cuckoo When Andy Samberg quit BBC3’s Cuckoo to work on NBC’s Brooklyn Nine Nine, fans of the series were distraught. That feeling was quickly exacerbated by the news that he would be replaced by Taylor Lautner, the shirtless werewolf from The Twilight Saga. Not exactly known for his deft comic timing or slapstick expressions (let’s face it, if I didn’t say “the shirtless werewolf from The Twilight Saga” you’d have no idea who I was talking about), Lutner’s wasn’t expected to match the SNL veteran’s level of performance. Well Samberg’s tenure never landed Cuckoo a Christmas special. Abs one, talent nil. If you ever find yourself surrounded by singing animals and vegetables, get yourself to a doctor. You will be grumpy all the time if a dancing frog is telling you to sort your life out. The Santa Claus Solved! Ok, so you’re sat at home on Christmas eve when you hear a bloke on your roof. What do you do? Well apparently Tim Allen’s advice would be to let the man die then steal his clothes. How about you don’t strip Santa Claus off? How about you call the police about a disturbance, and then an ambulence to tend to St Nic. off? Elf Black Mirror For some reason people like to be depressed at this, supposedly, the happiest time of year. In the past storytellers have always associated Christmas with tales of death and despair; from the ghost stories of M.R. James, to whatever sadistic menace writes the Eastender’s Christmas Day episode. This year you can get your demented kicks from Charlie Brooker’s satirical Black Mirror, and god only knows what that misanthropic git will have to say about the commercial dumpsite that is the Holiday Spending Season. This episode will be feature length and showcase the talents of Rafe Spall and Jon Hamm. Ok, so perhaps Jonathan Strange & Mr Norrell has a little competition for my affections. Solved! This film would have been a lot shorter if the Elves that work for Santa weren’t obviously racist to their fellow Elf buddy, it’s not where you’re from little Elves, it’s where you’re at. Alternative Christmas Playlist Compiled by Sarah Carter The Yeah Yeah Yeahs – All I Want For Christmas Fall Out Boy – Yule Shoot Your Eye Out Paper Route – City Trucks Blink-182 – I Won’t Be Home For Christmas My Chemical Romance – All I Want For Christmas Is You Blink-182 – Boxing Day Chosen by Sarah Carter The Beach Boys – Morning Christmas Chosen by Michael Dickinson The Chieftains ft. Elvis Costello – St. Stephen’s Day Murders Chosen by Michael Dickinson Kanye West – Christmas in Harlem Chosen by Michael Dickinson Grimes ft. Jay Worthy – Christmas Song Chosen by Murray Somerville Nick Lowe – Christmas at the Airport Chosen by Mareva Lindo Florence & The Machine – Last Christmas Chosen by Faye O’Shaughnessey Rufus Wainwright – It’s Cold Outside Chosen by Sam Haxwell Scott Mills & His Pigs In Blankets – The Perfect Christmas Single Chosen by Gemma Hirst Set It Off – This Christmas (I’ll Burn It To The Ground) Chosen by Jessica Flynn 36 VultureHound OCToBER 2o14 8 Christmas Horrors Tis’ The Season To Be Gory As the Winter months are here and the Christmas season is fast approaching, many of us will be getting ready to get cosy by the fire with a nice hot cup of tea, coffee or mulled wine and watch some festive films; Jingle All The Way, The Snowman and Home Alone are just a few that spring to mind. What if you want to change it up a bit this year though, and instead of watching the typical holiday movies, with Arnie running around looking for turboman, you want to get your adrenaline pumping. Thankfully there are films out there that are primarily made to make you scream in horror this Christmas, and possibly make you not want jolly ol’ Saint Nick to visit you. Words: Michael Jones Black Christmas Rare Exports: A Christmas Tale This gory 1974 helping, arguably, started the slasher genre and inspired many directors after it. The plot is simple, a group of sorority sisters are hanging out in their house before they leave to go home for Christmas, nothing could possibly go wrong. Unless of course a deranged killer is lurking out in the dark and picking them off one by one. Not only is this considered to be one of the first slasher films, but it is also one of the first that played on the ‘Babysitter and the Man Upstairs’ urban legend, in which, usually, the main protagonist receives creepy phone calls all night, but when the police trace the caller it appears that the perpetrator is inside the house. Some imaginative death scenes and a claustrophobic atmosphere make this a must for alternative Christmas films this year. Starting off this list is a horrorfantasy film from Finland, this is like nothing else you will have seen before. Everyone knows the famous line “he’s gonna find out if you’ve been naughty or nice”, well it turns out that this is true in Rare Exports; and you really don’t want to be caught if you have been naughty. After a scientist and some workers blow a hole in an ancient burial mound, they release its occupant onto the nearby town; he just so happens to be the original creature that Santa Claus was based on. However this guy is more happy when you have been naughty rather than nice, because that means he can come and steal you. Dead Snow Another Scandinavian flick now, Dead Snow is based in Norway and depicts a group of students who have decided to go and stay in a cabin for their break. Drinking and sexual activities unfold, until a strange hiker appears and tells the group a story about a town close by which was overtaken in world war two by the Nazis. After the fall of Hitler the towns people drove the Nazis into the mountains and left them to freeze to death, however they did not exactly die. The stranger leaves and the group find a box full of gold, now anyone whoâ€™s anyone knows that you never steal Nazi gold, unfortunately these guys do not know that and are then tormented and mutilated at the hands of some very angry Nazi zombies that want their gold back. Dead End Gremlins It is not really a horror film in itself, more of a sci-fi/fantasy, however Gremlins is such a classic Christmas film that it had to be on this list. A father who is struggling to find a present for his son for Christmas stumbles into a Chinese antique shop and purchases a small creature called a Mogwai. His son calls the creature Gizmo and it is sort of a cross between a fluffy cat and master Yoda. Although Gizmo may be small and cute, there are three rules that you must never break with a Mogwai; never feed him after midnight, never expose him to bright lights and never get him wet. Of course if one of these rules were not broken then we would not have much of a film; water accidentally gets spilt on Gizmo and several little gremlins begin to pour out of his back. With evil in their eyes and mischief in their thoughts, the gremlins are determined to ruin everybodyâ€™s Christmas. This low-budget horror movie from 2003 did not exactly have the most scares in it, but there is no doubt that it does create a creepy vibe whilst you are watching it. A family are on their way to have Christmas dinner when suddenly strange things begin to happen on a deserted road that the father has decided to take. They pick up a woman who claims that her baby is dead, and one by one each family member is lured away from the rest by a mysterious woman in white, who then takes them away in a black hearse. The story has a few twists and turns which are enjoyable, however what makes Dead End great is the fact that each family member individually starts to go insane and all the dark secrets that they are hiding come to light. delightful kids film, no this is the story of the evil killer Jack Frost who somehow becomes fused with the snow when the truck that is carrying him to his execution collides with a genetics truck. Once he realises that he is free, even though he is a snowman, he is determined to reap his horrible vengeance on the man who caught him. Snowmen are usually one thing that can brighten up a Christmas, that idea is completely turned on its head in this cult favourite. The Children This British horror flick from 2008 is still in the Christmas season but is based more around new years celebrations. All we want this year is to enjoy our families company and relax around the fire, that is slightly hard to do when your children begin to lose their minds and start slaughtering the ones you love. A family are getting together for the festive season when suddenly all of the younger children begin to fall ill and start vomiting; a good nights sleep sounds like the best remedy. Alas, this is not the case, as the next day sees the young kids slice, chop and disembowel the rest of their family. A new year to remember. This is not exactly an actual Christmas film, but it was based around the season, and it is such a classic that it had to be on the list. All Andy wants for Christmas is the latest toy sensation, a Good Guy Doll, and when he finally comes across one it just so happens to be carrying the soul of evil serial killer Charles Lee Ray. A violent killing spree ensues as the small doll, brilliantly voiced by Brad Dourif, searches for another body to put his soul into, all the while taking it on himself to murder anyone he comes into contact with in the most gory and comical ways possible. Child's Play Jack Frost Not to be confused with the 1998 Merry Christmas Everyone! By Murray Somerville WANT TO SEE YOUR AD HERE? Please contact firstname.lastname@example.org to discuss VultureHounD Vulturehound.com