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www.concrete-online.co.uk

VENUE Issue 272

Tuesday 9 October 2012

Fashion - London Fashion Week, page 8.

Television - Doctor Who: The End of Amy Pond, page 14.

Gaming - Eurogamer Expo 2012, page 19. Photo: Holly Maunders


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VENUE

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CONTENTS

Tuesday 9 October 2012

ISSUE 272

concrete.venue@uea.ac.uk

Editor-in-Chief | Amy Adams Venue Editors | Rachael Lum and Matthew Tidby Music | Editors | Hayden East and Sam Warner Music Contributors> Sam Day, Harry Fletcher, Rianna Hudson, Henry Burrell, James Lillywhite, Hayden East and Sam Warner Creative Writing | Editor | Matthew Mulcahy Creative Writing Contributors> Marian Davidson, Sarah Jones, James Sykes, Helen St John James and Stephen Pester Arts | Editor | Hatty Farnham Arts Contributors> Sophie Szynaka, Laura Thompson, Jess Beech, Katie Nertney and Hatty Farnham Fashion | Editors | Jess Beech and Lucy Jobber Fashion Contributors> Clare Kidman, Emily-Claire Tucker and Shelley Hazlewood TV | Editor | Ellissa Chilley TV Contributors> Jessica Burgess, Shelley Hazlewood, Zoe Jones, Jim Britton and Rianna Hudson Film | Editors | Kieran Rogers and Andrew Wilkins Film Contributors> Fiona Grundy, James Lillywhite, Greg Manterfield-Ivory, Megan Fozzard, Jake Deller, Sam Baker, Saul Holmes, Adam Dawson and Kieran Rogers Gaming | Editor | Oliver Balaam Gaming Contributors> Sam Emsley and Oliver Balaam

From The Editors Greetings and salutations, dear reader! So, since the last issue, one half of Team Venue has discovered Twitter, and the other half has experienced their first bout of freshers flu in three years as an undergraduate. Of course, we also have a fair deal of academic work to do, but we have declared a policy that the infamous ‘D’ word is not to be uttered in this office, and shall henceforth not be mentioned in any future Venue editorial.

Remember- if you’re interested in writing for Venue now or in the future, check out the website and get involved, Cheers,

Rachael and Matt

Photo:Holly Maunders

To quote the great General Melchett of Blackadder Goes Forth, “If nothing else works, a total pig-headed unwillingness to look facts in the face will see us through.”


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features

MUSIC

concrete.music@uea.ac.uk 09.10.2012

“Oppa Gangnam Style”

It’s the latest pop craze, with ridiculous dance moves suddenly becoming fashionable. Sam Day considers the impact of K-Pop star Psy’s Gangnam Style. In the beginning the Earth was created. Then Man said, “Let there be music”, and there was music. Then one Korean man called Psy decided to storm the Earth with the most infectious piece of music in the history of pop culture: oppa Gangnam Style! Some people disapprove: it’s music-video-reliant; it’s an insult to credible singer-songwriters and bands; it’s just garbage, just like all pop music nowadays. It’s popular, though: over 300 million hits on YouTube, number one in Korea, New Zealand, Canada and the UK. It’s also top three in various other countries including number two in the USA; this song has been force-fed upon us like baby food. Psy does owe a huge part of the song’s success to the music video though. With explosions, snowmachines and giddy-up-horsey dances, it’s an epic, cinematic masterpiece that makes a David Guetta video look like the Antiques Roadshow. Psy doesn’t take himself too seriously either, singing on the toilet, sitting in a sauna wearing a towel like a woman to cover up

his moobs, and lying down in a lift between the legs of a nutty, grointhrusting Korean making obscene faces at the camera. One can imagine the teenage tweets: “OMG this video is soooooo random LOL #GangnamStyle!” Stating the obvious, most of it is in a foreign language. We’ve never had anything Korean in the UK charts before, so when a song is released and it’s not in English, we listen. The lyrics, translated, are actually quite

profound. “Beautiful, lovable” and “A girl who covers herself but is more sexy than a girl who bares it all” shows a higher sensitivity to your average “shortaay-on-the-dance-flo” popstar. In fact, Gangnam Style refers to the more refined lifestyle of Gangnam, a wealthy district in Seoul, South Korea. To do it “Gangnam Style” is to do it the classy way. But what does Psy’s high class of success say about the music industry today? Shall we be forever dominated

by the mighty power of crazy K-Pop? Will Gangnam Style overthrow credible music from the void of reality, replacing it with a gloomy hodgepodge of manufactured trollop? Not likely. Although sad to say, Gangnam Style will probably be a one-hit wonder. This song is to the charts like chocolate is to dieting; it’s alright once in a while just as long as it’s only once in a while. Just as long as there’s a healthy, credible selection of music on the side, we’re allowed to have a portion of sweet silliness. This song won’t represent the whole of pop culture in the recent past, nor in the recent future. Pop moves on, and while we’ve had “Barbie Girls”, “Blue-Da-Buh-DeeBah-Bun-Dies”, “Cha Cha Slides” and “Crazy Frogs”, you can guarantee there’ll be something completely different around the corner, perhaps an operatic ballad about talcum powder or a cow mooing to fused jazz-dubstep… or something along those lines. Soon, we’ll have a new “most infectious song in the history of pop culture”, and we’ll look back, thinking, “Why on earth did I buy/ download that?”

The Great (and not so great) Comeback With bands from Public Image Ltd. to Take That getting back together, Harry Fletcher ponders the meaning behind old timers reforming.

Band reunions. Are they ever more than a cynical afterthought by old musos, who back in the day spent too much on the sex, drugs and lawyers lifestyle, sparing too little thought for their pension plan? Well, sometimes. Pink Floyd, whose members had spent the last few decades suing

each other for all they were worth, came together for the greater good in 2005 to headline Live 8. While this probably deserves to be regarded as one of the best band reunions of recent times, the Guns ‘n’ Roses comeback a few years ago almost certainly deserves to be named as the worst. The Axl Rose ego trip brought fans a terrible and obnoxious presence. But by no means are all reunions a result of delusions of self-worth, or mere regurgitations of long gone glories. The reunion can mean a lot more than a cash cow for the balding, money-strapped musician of yesteryear. While The Sex Pistols’ Filthy Lucre tour of 2002 had all the signs of a straightforward cash in, one being the disarmingly honest title, the comeback of John Lydon’s ‘other band’ Public Image Limited

offered far more in terms of artistic creativity. After seventeen dormant years, P.I.L. returned in 2009 with a brace of live shows and a critically acclaimed album. The group’s comeback saw them take a fresh approach, and with such energy and creativity, their return was clearly more than just a payday. At the other end of the commercial spectrum, Take That, surely the bestselling returning group of recent times, have welcomed back old fans, but also gathered new followers perhaps unfamiliar with the group before their renewed chart success. Although artistic output can add greater significance to a band comeback, even when bands return to do little more than play their greatest hits to willing fans, the reunion is nearly always harmless.

Young bands today tour and tour and tour. There isn’t enough money in album sales alone to support groups and live music is vital to their survival as artists. So why should it be any different for the older bands? If the demand is there, if people will pay to see the bands they love, where is the harm? Not all artists can afford to hold the artistic moral high ground and resist bringing themselves out of retirement. Even if the returning groups offer no fresh artistic output, and revert to the nostalgia fuelled familiarities of old, they present the opportunity for old mates to sing along to old tunes, and the chance for younger fans who missed them first time round to witness a little part of musical history. After all, if they don’t do it, there will be some tribute act who will.


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interview

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Sam Warner chats to musician Luke Ritchie ahead of his gig for freshers in the blue bar His band includes sister Charlotte Ritchie of Fresh Meat fame

Did you both grow up in a musical household? I suppose so. Our father plays guitar, piano and sings, and my mother sings as well. Her side of the family were half-Irish, with her father being born to travelling musicians. So music was always around. It started for me with my Dad’s guitar, learning Nirvana songs … Charlotte and our other sister grew up tinkering with the piano, so the house was always pretty noisy. So when did the idea arise of banding together into a whole group? We’d always wanted to do it, but the opportunity only really came up earlier this year, as Charlotte finally had some free time. She’s a busy lady! She was still finishing her degree when she started on Fresh Meat Series One, and before that, she’d been balancing her studies with other acting, as well as singing in the group All Angels. Once she’d finished the first series of Fresh Meat last autumn, she had some

time to sing with me, both as a duet, and with the full band. We even got the Angels to sing at one of my gigs, and it’s our live performance of Right Then and There that is now going to be featured on episode four of the upcoming second series of Fresh Meat. You both come from quite a diverse background, with your parents moving a lot around Europe. Do you both feel any particular identity, especially with the prevailing English themes on The Water’s Edge? I travelled around Europe quite a bit as I grew up, and it definitely affected my sense of national identity. It took me a long time to really feel English, and I still find the idea of Englishness extremely interesting, being so closely tied up with the legacy of Britain’s empire and colonialism. Those ideas definitely played on my mind when writing several songs on the album - such as Looking Glass, Shanty and Lighthouse.

Luke, you set yourself a target to write a song a week for six months in 2010. What is your songwriting process at the moment? How do you write songs together? Charlotte and I haven’t written songs together - not yet anyway. I myself am slowly starting to write again, in between all the touring. It’s always pretty slow, and painful, but I’m gradually making progress. Whereas the first album reflects the solitary, introspective nature of that songwriting process, some newer songs seem to be louder, as I’m writing with the band more, and it naturally changes the writing process. The next album might be a bit more electric, and I keep hearing horns in places. Was it difficult to choose those songs that eventually ended up on The Water’s Edge? I had a rough shortlist of 20 songs to choose from, and the producer Paul Savage had a big part in whittling that list down to 11. In fact, after our first

meeting, he listened to all 20 demos from the shortlist, and he had a very clear and insightful response to them, identifying those tracks that seemed the freshest and most honest. It was that personal and focused response to my songs that made me certain he was the right producer to work with. Those 11 tracks that he sketched out over our first phone conversation eventually became the 11 songs on the finished album. What are your plans for the band after this freshers tour is over? We have a national tour coming up later in the year, and in the meantime I plan to continue writing. The band have started messing around in the studio a bit, so hopefully we’ll have some new material ready for the festivals next summer. And of course I’m really excited about writing again. Luke Ritchie’s debut album ‘The Water’s Edge’ is out now.


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MUSIC

concrete.music@uea.ac.uk 09.10.2012

live reviews

MAVERICK SABRE UEA LCR 28.09.12 Rianna Hudson Not his first time to Norwich, Maverick Sabre performed last year at The Waterfront. However, his return visit has seen him upgraded to the bigger venue at the LCR. London-born but raised in Ireland, Michael Stafford, stage name Maverick Sabre, released his debut album Lonely are the Brave back in February of this year peaking at number two on the UK album charts. He played at V Festival this summer, and has also been shortlisted under Best R&B/Soul Act for the MOBO Awards 2012. Yet for some reason he remains under the mass radar. If his performance in Norwich says anything it’s that he shouldn’t be. For an hour and a half set, he sure packs a lot in. The set is incredibly

varied, throwing out tracks from the debut as well as cover tracks, songs from his 2010 mixtape Travelling Man, mash-ups and even a taste of some new material. One of the highlights of the evening is his track No One featuring on Lonely Are the Brave. Its upbeat nature gets the crowd going instantly, even more so when the strobe lighting starts and the chorus descends into a dubstep mix. Even those who turn up for an evening of soul sounding tunes can’t deny that the remix works well with the crowd and breaks the set up nicely. Sabre demonstrates his versatility by performing tracks by artists that have inspired him, including the Isley Brother’s Summer Breeze and

Get Up, Stand Up by Bob Marley. His covers are not attempts to outdo the originals, but rather give a nice dimension to the performance, which tells the audience the story of where his music has come from. Of course, songs from the debut dominate the set, most of them boasting soulful and mellow sounds. Each are completely self-penned, and you can just see the amount of feeling that goes into singing each one of them. The preview of a new track entitled Just Smile is more upbeat compared to some of the tracks from his debut, but after teaching the audience the chorus, the song goes down just as well as the more recognisable tunes. It’s a hit waiting to happen. Supporting Sabre on his UK tour

is Ms. Dynamite, whose most famed track Dy-na-mi-tee (despite being 10 years old) still sounds just as good now as it did back then. It’s definitely the one the crowd are waiting for. Also in tow is soul-pop musician Daley who doesn’t make the Norwich gig due to illness. On his Bristol and London dates Maverick Sabre is joined by up-and-coming group Rudimental – mostly known for their hit Feel the Love, which reached number one on UK charts not too long ago. The outstanding performance promises good things to come from Maverick Sabre, and hopefully the release of new material soon from this guitar-playing, rapping, dubstep-mixing, soul-singing jack-of-alltrades.


MUSIC

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album reviews

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HOW TO DRESS WELL TOTAL LOSS Hayden East

If there was ever an argument for making the jump from lo to hi-fidelity, it would be How to Dress Well – a.k.a. Tom Krell’s – debut, Love Remains. Caught

TAME IMPALA LONERISM Henry Burrell

With their new release, Tame Impala have really cemented themselves as one of the world’s most exciting new bands. Forget Mumford & Sons, whose second album is as cack as their first. This sophomore effort is all at once hard rock, psychedelic and ethereal. “Gotta be above it”, chants band leader Kevin Parker, a vocal loop on the opening track in time with the

in the middle of 2010’s ubiquitous lo-fi ‘chillwave’ trend, the record was plagued by crackled reverb and blown out distortion. Its imperfections were its greatest attribute, but one can only get so much mileage from a lo-fi template. As such, moving from one end of the fidelity spectrum to the other seems for Krell less a response to the change in musical current, and rather a decision made out of necessity. Indeed, both in terms of style and concept Total Loss dictates a production approach that is worlds away from bedroom recordings on a laptop. How to Dress Well’s sound is indebted to late 80’s R&B – a genre known for its glossy aesthetic and crisp beats. Take the single Cold Nites for instance, with its gorgeous piano samples, delicate falsetto, and sharp hi-hats; or the finger snaps and Michael Jackson-esque stomp of & It was U: all core elements within clattering drums that recall Blur’s Song 2. A mastery of production and studio is apparent, but not overpowering. What was hinted at on debut album Innerspeaker is here brought to beautiful fruition, with added John Lennon vocal stylings. But hey, what better band to emulate than the best band ever? The third track, Apocalypse Dreams. sounds exactly like you’d expect. It’s a pretty stunning soundscape that manages to hold your attention for its six minute length. This seems to suggest Tame Impala’s appeal: they manage to bring in an almost prog influence, but never get lost in noodling mindless solos or unwanted middle sections that go on for 15 minutes for no reason. Leave that to bands like Of Montreal and The Mars Volta. Later on, the record still holds the high quality of its first half. Feels Like We Only Go Backwards has a beautiful, lingering bass line that shows the improved musicianship here. Tame Impala have said in the press how they recorded this album all over the world - in stairwells, hotels and aeroplanes. But there’s no disconnection on show. They truly sound like a complete package now, and perhaps reaching out into the world for that extra bit of inspiration is the secret here.

the genre; all elements that fail to work in a lo-fi context. Equally important to the record is its high concept. During the writing process Krell experienced the breakdown of a relationship as well as the death of a family member. Naturally, Total Loss is unapologetically elegiac: “dear mama, didn’t you try to tell me everything was gonna be right?” he quivers over a mournful piano on the opening track When I Was In Trouble. No longer suffocating under distortion, this newfound clarity in Krell’s voice means he is now able to convey a strong narrative, albeit a melancholic one. At times Total Loss bears similarities to D’Eon’s recent debut LP – another high-concept, R&B-influenced record. However, where How to Dress Well triumphs over his counterpart is in execution. At half the length of LP, the fact that Krell is able to streamline his

MUSE THE 2ND LAW James Lillywhite

When Muse released the dubstepinfluenced teaser trailer for their sixth studio album The 2nd Law earlier in 2012, it was met with mixed reactions. While some fans saw this move as a continuation of the band’s typical genre spanning sound, others saw it as selling out and cashing in on the dubstep craze. It turns out that both were wrong, for in The 2nd Law Muse have created a genre defying, bombastic and thrilling record.

work without sacrificing concept shows an understanding of the listening process. You can see it in the way that musical reprises bookend Sides A and B of the record. Everything is meticulously structured, but when appropriated on Side B these motifs become less defeatist, and possibly point towards a hope out of loss. This is particularly the case on standout track Talking To You, which takes the heartbreaking strings of earlier interlude World I Need You, Won’t Be Without You (Proem) and pairs them with a gospel falsetto for an emotive climax. Catharsis is a major theme of the record, and Krell makes this a shared experience. Moments like these prove that Krell’s musical and conceptual visions are finally intersecting, and therein lies How To Dress Well’s true victory: out of Total Loss, Krell has created a deeply affecting, fully-realised record that transcends mere fads. From the stadium rock opener Supremacy to the funk-influenced Panic Station, this release is as ambitious as anything Muse have ever recorded. While this creates, at points, a peculiar sense of inconsistency, it also makes the album increasingly listenable, generating a sense that literally anything could come next. There is a dubstep presence, especially on the Nero-produced Follow Me, but it never threatens to become the main focus of the record, as it is guaranteed that the next track will be entirely different. While at some points the album struggles lyrically (especially London Olympics theme Survival), the Chris Wolstenholme-penned Save Me and Liquid State appear as particularly poignant moments. Dealing directly with the bassist’s struggle with alcoholism, the songs are as personal and as heartfelt as anything the band have produced, and act as a neat break from the grandeur of the other tracks. It seems then that six albums in, Muse are only getting more ambitious with their sound. This pomposity is why people both love and loathe the band, and The 2nd Law will not convert any cynics. What it does do, however, is provide a fascinating, if not always coherent listen, with some truly exciting moments. Muse continue to create overwhelmingly entertaining music, and still stand out as one of the most original bands in the world today.


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FASHION @conc_fashion

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concrete.fashion@uea.ac.uk 09.10.2012

London Fashion Week

SMOKIN’ Lana Del Rey’s H&M Collaboration Love an excuse to put wigs on manikins

Tweed Jackets Bringing country chic to our concrete surroundings

With Clare Kidman

London Fashion Week: five days of catwalk shows, famous faces and the trends we’ll all be lusting after next season. It may be over, but what we’ve seen on the catwalks will be making its way onto the high street for Spring/ Summer 2013. You can find highlights from all the shows, and information about the designers, on the London Fashion Week website. It is definitely worth a look. My top tips are Vivienne Westwood’s Red Label show at the Natural History Museum; House of Holland’s amazing printed and tiedyed collection; and Temperley, for the most glamorous dresses you will ever see. If you watch the Vivienne Westwood highlights, you will see her emerging at the end of her show wrapped in a flag of protest for climate change, wearing pink hot pants with a drawn-on moustache and monocle. Yes,

really. My favourite show of week had to be Mulberry. Their current ad campaign resembles something out of Where the Wild Things Are and they stuck with the theme of nature for their LFW show. With the official theme of “English Garden”, guests were met by giant garden gnomes and tiered cakes in two of the show’s key colours - peach and mint. Kate Moss, Alexa Chung and Lana Del Rey sat side-by-side on the front row, demonstrating Mulberry’s massive celebrity fan base, and the power that comes with having a handbag named after you. The catwalk was surrounded by images of woodland, and, in keeping with the fun garden theme, a particularly chic Standard Poodle made its way down the catwalk. The obligatory leather was everywhere,

worn with pretty calf-length dresses, widelegged trousers and big jackets. Peach and mint floral, jacquard, and amazing monochrome prints showed that Mulberry isn’t just about bags. Their oversized biker jacket has already made its way onto my fashion wish list - I’ll be on the lookout for a high street version next season. The show was also an opportunity for Mulberry to showcase their new bag, the Willow. It is a tote with a detachable clutch bag on the front, which means two bags for the price of one, but more importantly, it is beautiful. It came down the catwalk in a whole array of colours, and will be available in three sizes. Kate Moss has already been snapped carrying one, so prepare to see it on the arms of celebs and socialites everywhere. I’ll have mine in the mint, please.

Interview with Annie Walker-Trafford Mulberry Willow Two bags in one!

CHOKIN’ Burberry’s metallic coats Another unwearable catwalk trend

Phillip Treacy’s hat Plain terrifying

Shite shirts Never ever okay

Emily-Claire Tucker investigates the model’s perspective of London Fashion Week Annie Walker-Trafford is an 18-yearold model based in London. Last month she took part in London Fashion Week for the first time since becoming a fulltime model. She took the time to tell us what fashion week was like as one of the beautiful people. What’s the average day for a model at LFW like? Before the actual shows started, an average day involved loads of castings, around 10-14 a day! Once the shows started I would take part in some, and then attend castings and fittings in between. I also did hair and makeup tests for clients during the week. How does working at LFW compare to other modelling jobs? Fashion week is so much busier than any other time, outside of fashion week a normal day is about three castings or a job if I have one. I also get more nervous with the catwalk shows. With a photoshoot you will be directed and spend time getting the perfect shot, on the catwalk you only get one chance. What’s the best thing about working LFW?

The best thing is meeting all the people and designers and obviously the shows themselves. The atmosphere backstage is quite hectic, but I like that, and getting your hair and makeup done is always fun! And the worst? Being so tired and having to travel all over London, constantly going back and forth because the castings can be really far apart. Who did you model for this year? Jasper Conran, Willow, Jena Theo and Leutton Postle, which was an off schedule show. Finally, what’s the outlook for SS 2013 looking like? All the shows I did were really different. Jasper Conran was really laid-back, bare-feet and simple, effortless hair but really bright and colourful. Willow was quite simple, nudes and blacks, really floaty and feminine. Jena Theo was similar as it was feminine with sheer fabrics again. All the clothes I wore were really wearable but I only did four shows and the shows were so varied, with so many different trends!

Photo: Nick Shand


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FRESHER FASHION

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You’ve Been Spotted!

This fortnight’s best dressed, as seen at Zane Lowe.

Amy, Literature Fresher Dress: H&M

EJ, Accounting Fresher Top: Primark

Rob, Law Fresher Shirt: Topman

Natalie, Nursing Fresher Dress: Forever 21

Use your brain, head to The Lanes forget the high street- norwich’s medieval maze is where the real bargains are Shelley Hazlewood Located in the cultural hub of the city, nestled amongst The Birdcage and Norwich’s renowed Marketplace, the lanes is a wonderful part of the city where the hidden gems in Norwich are located. There is a real mixture of independent shops, eateries and pubs in this quaint area in the city. I urge you to resist heading to Chapelfield and the Haymarket to shop and go explore the lanes. While the selection of high street shops is amazing, the following independent shops are a must visit for everyone!

Prim This is a wonderful vintage shop situated on the charming St Benedict’s Street that sells both men and women’s clothing. All of the items are hand selected and in brilliant condition. They have a fantastic range of vintage jewellery and shoes in there too. The shop itself is really cool; it’s spacious, has glittery floorboards and bare brick walls, plus they always have good music on. Everyone in the shop is really friendly, helpful and passionate about vintage clothing too. You will fall in love with this shop, they have everything you could ever need, it is a vintage shoppers Mecca.

Goldfinches Goldfinches opened last year and it is on St Gregory’s alley. It’s a lovely little shop with a chilled-out atmosphere and an awesome playlist. They sell both men’s and women’s clothing, which have been handpicked and altered before being put on sale. For those of you thinking vintage is expensive, think again! Goldfinches offers affordable pieces with no compromise on the quality. They do student discount which is another bonus. The staff are friendly and helpful and there is everything in there that you could possibly need. I am currently in love with their range of handbags and hats.

The Rock collection If you are looking for something a bit different this is the place to be. It started off life as a market stall but it is now a shop on Lower Goat lane. This is your one stop shop for alternative clothing and they always have good Halloween costumes in there too. There is an online store and they stock a range of brands such as Hell Bunny, Iron Fist, Alchemy Gothic and Criminal Damage. I’m currently lusting after the Iron Fist shoes they have in. Another cool thing is they occasionally do band signings. If you are looking for something that is a little less mainstream, this is the place to go.


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LOOPER (15)

Director: Rian Johnson 118mins Starring: Joseph Gordon-Levitt, Bruce Willis, Emily Blunt, Paul Dano, Jeff Daniels In 2032 time travel hasn’t been invented yet. Come 2072, however, it’s become a staple of criminal activity, used by gangs to send back their adversaries so they can be dispensed of without a trace. It’s all part of an average day in the job of a Looper. Joe (Joseph Gordon-Levitt) is a Looper, paid to shoot whoever is sent back to him in his assigned spot, the problem being that one day the man sent back is his future self (Bruce Willis). Matters take a turn for the worse when old Joe escapes and, coupled with a grand, sinister plan, the subsequent actions change the course of both of their timelines. Films such as The Matrix and Inception have been mentioned when trying to describe Looper’s tone, impact and storyline; the reason being that Looper is an intelligent film. Written and directed by Rian Johnson, it features a fresh concept, with a story set in a world

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REVIEWS that feels both entirely different and incredibly real. It speaks to a modern day audience by assuming they will understand a relatively confusing plot and, due to its engrossing human and supernatural storyline, succeeds where films such as In Time and The Adjustment Bureau did not.

This is partly down to the performances of the actors on screen, all of which are incredible. Emily Blunt portrays a single and very protective mother named Sara, complete with an impeccable Southern American accent and confidence with a shotgun. Elsewhere Pierce Gagnon, the child

actor who plays a young boy named Cid, delivers an astonishing performance for someone so infantile. Joseph Gordon-Levitt provides a great watch as a younger Willis, with prosthetics helping to etch out the facial similarities he shares with his veteran co-star. Bruce Willis, ever intense, also provides his best Bruce-Willis-with-amachine-gun routine. But what must be credited almost above anything else is the refreshingly original and layered storyline that makes Looper such a great film. Its conclusion shocks you when it finally arrives, while simultaneously defusing the often-grey area of time travel. It’s all handled neatly enough that whatever inconsistencies you can begin to fathom do not need to be paid attention to, as the rest of the story seems to just make sense. Looper has everything to provide an unmissable hit: action sequences to thrill, an intelligent plot to keep you engrossed, and incredible performances from a top-notch cast, to make a film which is frankly one of 2012’s greatest.

Fiona Grundy

KILLING THEM SOFTLY (18) Director: Andrew Dominik 97mins Starring: Brad Pitt, Scoot McNairy, Ray Liotta, James Gandolfini A simple synopsis of Andrew Domink’s Killing Them Softly makes it sound rather run-of-the-mill. It concerns professional enforcer Jackie Cogan (Brad Pitt) being brought in by a gang of mobsters to investigate the robbery of one of their high-stake card games. However, when you throw in excellent performances, a strong script, and some original and interesting direction from Dominik, Killing Them Softly becomes so much more. The most striking parts of this feature are the exceptional performances from the whole cast. Pitt leads the film strongly, putting in yet another towering performance. There is something about the actor that can make even the most immoral characters appear as likable and charming. Here, Cogan is a ruthless killer who lies and cheats his way through the film, but he appears also as the most amiable character in the piece. James Gandolfini, Richard Jenkins and Monsters’ Scoot McNairy all perform admirably too, creating a

FILM

rounded, professional ensemble. Thematically, Killing Them Softly is not subtle in its message. Told in a backdrop of the 2008 US general election, the post-economic crash/ post-hurricane Katrina streets of New Orleans are almost a character in themselves. With boarded up houses and closed down businesses in the background of many scenes, the mass unemployment and unhappiness of the country are referenced constantly. Littered with extracts of John McCain and Barack Obama’s speeches

in the run up to the election, Killing Them Softly is as much a comment on modern day America than anything else. Cogan believes America to be a business, and uses this as a justification for his rather nefarious deeds. It seems that none of the characters really care about who would win this election, but hold deep reservations about politics and politicians in general. In one particular shot, a torn and ragged ‘Hope’ poster is shown in passing, reinforcing the scepticism of politics implied throughout the film.

After 2007’s critical darling The Assassination of Jesse James By The Coward Robert Ford, fans and critics alike have been waiting for a follow up from Andrew Dominik, and the director does not disappoint. The film is littered with interesting and surprising shots, and it is kept very intimate with a constant use of handheld cameras. One particular stand out moment is the introduction of Jackie Cogan, who we first see sitting in his car, casually smoking, while The Man Comes Around by Johnny Cash plays in the background. The sequence perfectly sets up Cogan as a character. The only notable criticism can be aimed at the length of time spent dealing with Ray Liotta’s Markie. Not only does his subplot have very little to do with the overall story, it becomes rather distracting. This is not helped by the characters themselves also pointing out how unnecessary it is. This aside, Dominik handles the film professionally and successfully. Killing Them Softly then, is quite a surprise. Dark, twisted and always entertaining, this expertly scripted and exceptionally acted feature could turn out to be one of the revelations of 2012.

James Lillywhite


FILM

09.10.2012 concrete.film@uea.ac.uk

www.concrete-online.co.uk

BERBERIAN SOUND STUDIO (15)

UNTOUCHABLE (15)

Berberian Sound Studio focuses on the character of Gilderoy, played by Toby Jones, a quiet but skilled Foley artist who leaves his comfortable world of English nature films and goes to work on an Italian horror picture called The Equestrian Vortex. Gilderory’s unassuming demeanour clashes with the exuberant and passionate style of the giallo filmmakers, and he soon finds himself trapped in an environment to which, we believe, he does not belong. Berberian is the second feature film by British director Peter Strickland, and he demonstrates his skill by effortlessly manipulating the sensory experience of the viewer. By choosing not to show the film-within-a-film that Gilderoy is working on, Strickland affords us the opportunity to step behind the screen and examine the psychological effect of producing extreme cinematic gore. Close up shots of smashed fruit and vegetables take on a surprisingly sinister side when

“You only ever watch depressing films,” said a friend when this reviewer exclaimed she was going to see Untouchable. Its premise does sound pretty bleak: a French film about a rich quadriplegic named Phillipe (François Cluzet) that needs a new live-in carer, and a young offender, Driss (Omar Sy), who needs to go to the interview for the job to claim his benefits. Yet you know from the first scene, in which the two are speeding through the Paris roads, pretending that Phillipe is having a fit to escape the police, that this is going to be more comedy than tragedy. Essentially, Phillipe is tired of patronizing carers and Driss injects fun into his life, and subsequently into this film. The brilliance of Untouchable, then, is like his new carer. It can make a joke about disability without being offensive. For instance, there’s Driss’ unconventional methods of care work, like hiring an erotic massager to, er,

Director: Peter Strickland 92mins

@Concrete_Film

Director(s): Olivier Nakache, Eric Toledano 112mins

shown with the sound of ear-piercing screams. As the film progresses, Gilderoy struggles to hold on to his connection with home and eventually attempts to adapt to the intense atmosphere of the studio. But this is not a straightforward descent into madness cut from a familiar horror cloth; instead Strickland plays with the audience’s perceptions by manipulating the sound of the film in much the same way as Gilderoy does with The Equestrian Vortex. Elsewhere, unnerving and seamless transitions from the studio to Gilderoy’s bedroom play hell with the audience’s grasp of what is real. In the end the picture concludes its meta-narrative with a conspicuous lack of visual violence that leaves the audience with a refreshingly interesting plot to turn over in their heads.

Greg Manterfield-Ivory

11

“stimulate” Phillipe, and giving him a few tokes on a joint to help with his phantom pains. And it might sound like a bit of tired cliché but the more that Driss cares for him, the more these two men learn from ‘different worlds’ and from each other (even if at first you can enjoy both Cool and the Gang, and Vivaldi). The unique storyline and brilliant dialogue are matched in standard with the cinematography, which captures both the rich and poor sides of Paris. In just nine weeks since it’s release, Untouchable has grossed €10,675,300, which makes it the second most successful film of all time in France. With plans for the French to pick it as their Oscar hopeful, and rumours of an English speaking adaptation in the works, the film looks set to have just as much popularity around the globe – and it will be richly deserved.

Megan Fozzard

SAVAGES (15)

IMAX: RAIDERS OF THE LOST ARK (PG)

Director: Oliver Stone 131mins

Director: Steven Spielberg 115mins

Oliver Stone’s Savages tells the story of Chon (Taylor Kitsch) and Ben (Aaron Taylor-Johnson), two old high school pals who have become the ‘best’ marijuana producers in the world. The pair are complete opposites of one another. Chon is a macho army man fighting people, shooting guns and sleeping with girls, while Ben is soft, warm and loving; doing charity work all around the world. The female lead, O (Blake Lively), is drawn in by their contrasting personalities. She explains how their dissimilarities allow for the two of them to become her perfect boyfriend, and thus a strange love triangle is formed. It is a rather odd scenario and the other characters appear as equally confused as the viewer. Furthermore, Lively’s performance is nothing short of dreadful, with an acting style that would not look out of place in a primary school Christmas production. These poor performances are further

complimented by those of John Travolta as Dennis, a DEA officer; Salma Hayek as Elena, the gang lord; and Benicio Del Toro as Lado, Elena’s lackey. They are all stereotypical characters portrayed in an extremely stereotypical way. The only comical element of this film comes in the form of Del Toro’s ridiculous mullet and moustache combo that would befit an American diner more than a drug cartel. Savages is obviously made with the intention of being a serious movie. It’s supposedly dramatic style is extremely overplayed and very disappointing. There is little quality in this piece. It displays the typical tropes of drug-fuelled dramas, showing little imagination. Sitting through the entire film is a trial, a test of your tolerance of poor acting, lame characters and inconsequential storylines.

Jake Deller

The limited re-release of Indiana Jones and The Raiders of the Lost Ark for IMAX is the perfect opportunity to watch what is considered one of the most enjoyable and timeless films on the big screen. As soon as John William’s resounding score blasts from the speakers, Harrison Ford’s bumbling professor-cum-dashing -archaeologist captivates, entertains and inspires, just as he did in the original release nearly three decades ago. The film sees ‘Indy’ pitted against a Nazi plot to uncover the Ark of the Covenant; a biblical doomsday device with the power to make those who wield it invincible. The plot takes place in a variety of locations, from the deep jungles of Peru to the Egyptian desert, and invites character driven set pieces that remain thrilling and entertaining, even if a little cliché. From start to finish, Raiders is filled with as much romance, action and adventure to rival any films released since

its inception, and its iconic moments, such as the one-sided gun fight in the market or the haunting final scene, look and sound fantastic in their re-mastered IMAX format. Some of the special effects have a tendency to look slightly dated when shown on such a large screen, however the magic of the franchise outweighs such minor problems. If you’ve never seen an Indiana Jones film before, then this re-release is the perfect opportunity to right that wrong, and if you have, then watching it in the IMAX is certainly worth the admission, if for no reason other than nostalgia alone. Although Indiana Jones may claim that the historical artefacts he discovers ‘belong in a museum’, cinemagoers can be thankful that Lucas and Spielberg chose not to consign Raiders of the Lost Ark to one.

Sam Baker


12 NEWS

@Concrete_Film

www.concrete-online.co.uk

FILM

concrete.film@uea.ac.uk 09.10.2012

Seth Macfarlane set to host the Oscars; new promotional material arrives for the hobbit and the wolverine; robots are everywhere.

Saul Holmes The big news in the world of film this week is rather more political and serious than usual as the drama over the anti-Islamic film (quotation marks around the word ‘film’ may be required) The Innocence of Muslims rumbles on; with the Culture Minister of Iran, Mohammed Hosseini, announcing that Iran would boycott the 2013 Oscars because of the films portrayal of the prophet Mohammed and Muslims in general. Even ignoring the fact that the film is in no way connected to the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences, this seems like something of an overreaction as it is highly doubtful that The Innocence of Muslims will be nominated for any awards. Hosseini even went so far as to encourage other Islamic nations to boycott future Oscars. Can we not just let the cretins be cretins and get on with the serious business of watching a lot of movies? The other big Oscars news story is that Seth Macfarlane has been selected to host the 2013 awards ceremony. This is, of course, means there will be crooning, toilet humour in abundance, cursing and possibly

the ugly face of film

even a cartoon dog. The selection seems to hint at the Oscars heeding the demands to attract a younger audience to cinema’s biggest and most glamorous event of the year. This can only be a good thing. In other news, a new Hobbit trailer and stills, including a dwarf-filled poster (seriously there are so many dwarves),

have arrived on the Internet, a gentle reminder that the biggest film of the winter is coming up. Along with this, a first promotional picture for The Wolverine has been released which reveals little information other than the fact that Hugh

Jackman will once again be so sinewy that he might as well not have skin. Plenty of rumours have been flying around over the past fortnight, most notably that both Ben Whishaw and Ann Hathaway are rumoured to be joining Spielberg’s Robopocalypse. That’s right, ROBOPOCALYPSE. With this and the robot-tastic Pacific Rim currently in production, robots are the new aliens; which were the new zombies; which were the new Russians … You get the idea. Moving on to the most important news story that has ever occurred; Martin Freeman has joined the increasingly impressive cast list of Edgar Wright’s upcoming conclusion to his seminal Cornetto trilogy; The World’s End. Freeman will join Simon Pegg, Nick Frost, Rosamund Pike and Paddy Considine in the comedy that will follow a group of high school friends on a reunion pub crawl which finishes, funnily enough, at the World’s End pub. Also aliens turn up at some point. Clearly Wright didn’t get the memo about robots being the new aliens.

Venue looks at the disturbing controversy caused by the innocence of muslims Youtube video and the negative power of film.

Adam Dawson The Innocence of Muslims has created a storm of anger surrounding its antiIslam and racist message. The insults the film throws at Islam’s Prophet Muhammad led to mass protests and demonstrations all over the world, and arguably led to the murder of US Ambassador John Christopher Stevens in Libya. Given such startling news, and a chilling reminder of the (sometimes) indoctrinating power of film, now more than ever seems the most appropriate time to investigate where movies should draw the line when it comes to tackling politics and religion. The controversy surrounding The Innocence of Muslims begins with, and stems from, its producer and writer Nakoula Basseley Nakoula. He originally had the actors believe they were taking part in a movie set in Egypt 2,000 years ago, concerning a plot about warring desert tribes. We can all agree film takes on some pretty daring subjects. In fact, most of the best movies have controversial subject matter at their heart. Take the iconic

Martin Scorsese film Taxi Driver: violence, murder, teenage prostitution. But it’s a masterpiece. Religion, too, is not a new topic for movies. To name several, The Life of Brian, Dogma, and Stigmata all deal with religion in hugely different ways, and although such films may have been called controversial, they certainly never had the kind of effect that Basseley Nakoula’s video has had.

Those films mentioned have something that The Innocence of Muslims can never dream of replicating – a reason to exist beyond attacking faith. They all have a plot, dynamic characters, intellectual themes and something to say beyond an ignorant and crude message that is just a simple and bigoted attack on religion and race. If there is a line to cross, then The Innocence of Muslims has definitely

crossed it. It seems increasingly important to keep in mind that this was something that found a home on YouTube and was not something widely distributed to cinemas. Like Kony 2012 before it, The Innocence of Muslims is indicative of the changing film world, of how people consume film and, indeed, of what constitutes a “film.” This is perfect evidence to suggest how people can express their views with the most minimal of time and effort. The Innocence of Muslims does not deserve to be called a film. It is a low quality YouTube video uploaded by someone who wanted a way to attack Islam, and has unfortunately added a very legitimate fuel to the fire in regards to the current East vs. West/Christianity vs. Islam zeitgeist, and to the perceived notion that America is a country poisoned with Islamophobia. It is a reminder of the power of propaganda and how easy it is to accept what is presented to you, though it is a reminder we all could have done without.


FILM

09.10.2012 concrete.film@uea.ac.uk

www.concrete-online.co.uk

in conversation...

@Concrete_Film

13

From exhibition to criticism, in conversation... explores aspects of, and the challenges facing, Norwich’s film industry. In the second of the series, EPIC studios discuss production and putting Norwich on the map. Should you take a brisk walk along Magdalen Street, on the upper side of town, you may notice something seems peculiarly out of place. For a moment Venue stops and admires the juxtaposition on display, for sandwiched between all the mandatory, aging pubs and secondhand stores stands Norwich’s leading and most innovative production studio: EPIC (or the East of England Production Innovation Centre). If EPIC’s contemporary glass paneled exterior doesn’t mark it as the antithesis of its surroundings, then what you find inside certainly does: a technological and up-to-date wonderland, complete with three studios (one of which, Studio E, covers a colossal 6,000 square feet), five edit suites, dressing rooms, the most advanced of HD cameras, and a modern café (currently serving a mean bacon bap) for those who need a coffee after a long, tiresome day. Coffee in hand (perhaps in preparation for a long, tiresome day), the man set to represent EPIC is James Foster, the studio’s business development manager. During a detailed tour of the building he delves into a bit of history (how EPIC was once the second studio of ITV Anglia), and explains how this is a place that prides itself on variety. Indeed, it’s on the topic of this unique location that Venue is itching to start the interview… Venue: It’s quite a strange location that this production studio is in. Of course, a lot of people might rightly suspect that facilities are more important than location, but is there an importance to the location too? EPIC: [Our] location is historical. It is where it is based on its history of being part of ITV Anglia, and all the great TV programmes that were made here. We’d rather be on Gentleman’s Walk of course, but we think we’re in a pretty good location. There’s good links, there are some buses, handy parking nearby, and the building is completely accessible. V: And the facilities themselves are really impressive. You must be proud of what you have here? E: The range of facilities here is unprecedented. What we do find is that when people come round they invariably always say, “Crikey, I didn’t realise all this was here.” And it is true

– all this is here. We have a fantastic main studio, which is a really flexible space. It can host hundreds of people for a live performance in a TV show setting, or take people in tiered seats for more formal sit down shows. Our two other studios allow for magazine style format programmes and a smaller seated audience, as well as the flexibility to use dynamic background screens, with a huge array of graphic capabilities. So, all in all, pretty much anything that needs to be made can be made here. We’ve shot some music videos recently; we’ve done voiceovers, hosted radio. Anything that’s digital, audio, video, that’s what we like to be able to deliver.

while your live events suggest it’s about more than just simple production… E: For us it’s always about the audience and the content that we make for them. We have a variety of different audiences; we have a live audience that comes along and experiences what we’ve got to offer on the night; a fantastic, friendly and welcoming atmosphere. We also have people who watch us on the Internet, so we try to engage with them as much as possible. And then we try and look after individual clients as carefully and properly as we possibly can. What I would say, in regards to competition, is

the big Hollywood money, budgets, all that kind of stuff, but we have a determination to succeed, and that counts for quite a lot. V: How would you advise any young people wanting to get involved in production - or even start their own production companies? We’ve got a lot of first year students coming to the university in September, how would you advise them? E: You have to have a core belief in yourself, you have to have a passion and you have to want to get things done. So, actually make something. Start it, middle it, but finish it. That’s the key thing. It’s about accumulating finished work that you can show people that this is what you’ve done, and then you start to build up a CV and a portfolio. Focus, deliver, and show that you’re able to complete work. That’s the biggest tip. V: Your website says you like to work with local talent, so do you feel that film production, and technology as a whole, has an important role to play in the community?

V: I guess every company is different, but can you elaborate on EPIC’s role in getting projects made? Do you step back and let the filmmakers have all the control? Do you have an advisory role? E: It depends. We can source producers; we can advise on content, we can do formats, we can provide technical support, or we can just do an “open the doors…away you go” kind of service. The expertise and knowledge within the building is able to offer a huge variety of support for clients and people that come in. It depends on the size of the project. We’re always keen to assess the requirements and offer appropriate advice. V: When one thinks of production in this digital age, you can think of people that can buy cheap camcorders or editing equipment, and then of course you’ve got rival production companies, like Top Box Media, in Norwich. So, how does EPIC keep ahead of the industry in this sense? You’ve got all the equipment here to suggest its about keeping up to date,

that if we can all make Norwich famous for excellence in media production then that brings benefits to everybody. Between us, we can put Norwich on the map. If we can make it a success, if we can start to harness the undoubted talents that are coming out of our training courses and try and create a media, TV and film production hub that’s here, then people will stay, the talent will stay, we’ll become famous for that and that will start to create its own momentum. That would be a virtuous circle of success. It’s not about undercutting each other; it’s about making sure that we’re working together to create a fantastic atmosphere. V: If they are at all comparable, what are the fundamental differences between studios of that ilk in America and the ones at “grass roots level”, the local studios like this? E: What we have here, and I’m not saying that Hollywood studios don’t have it, is passion, determination and pride - and that is the heartbeat of what we do. We don’t have

E: The world is becoming visual. It is becoming video, and the consumption of video is increasing all the time, so there will always be the need to create good quality video. It goes back to the earlier point I made about trying to create a hub and a reputation and a centre of excellence. V: And how do you see Norwich as a place for creativity and filmmaking? Is it a good place to work? E: It’s bridging the gap between the fantastic quality of students that come here and giving them the chance to stay. But on top of that, what we need to do is make the talent feel like they have to stay, rather than having to head down to London. V: Finally, what’s the future got in store for EPIC? E: We’re planning to get busier. We don’t need to expand the buildings, though we’d like to invest in improving them. What we do need to do is to spread the word about Norwich, about Norfolk and about EPIC. words: Kieran Rogers You can keep updated with EPIC @EPICNorwich and www.epic-tv.com


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www.concrete-online.co.uk

TELEVISION concrete.television@uea.ac.uk 09.10.2012

laughter to lighten the blow

This week Venue provides some comic relief ideas to help you deal with one seriously emotional finale

DOCTOR WHO Jessica Burgess

For many months now Doctor Who fans everywhere have been enjoying their last days of happiness in anticipation of the half-series finale that would see the emotional exit of the eleventh Doctor’s first companions - the Ponds. On the emotional front, The Angels Take Manhattan was not one to disappoint; we are thrown straight into an Amy and Rory emotional rollercoaster that deals with aging, love, loss, and ultimately the importance of their companionship to their raggedy Time Lord. This episode sees the return of the horribly creepy weeping angels; a foe who are arguably one of the most terrifying of the Doctor’s adversaries. They’ve made it difficult to spot any real life cold-stone statue without a rush of the heebie-jeebies; thankfully, in reality, they don’t have the power to zap you back in time, the narrative basis of this suitably complex, timey-wimey episode. Piles of paradox’s, overlapping timelines and even a book which tells the future made it impossible for the Doctor to intervene in his companions ultimate fate (and I warn you, have your

love

Shelley Hazlewood

tissues ready for the final five minutes!). As recalled by the Doctor earlier this series, Amy was the “first face” his face saw; an integral quote which underlines the magnitude of Amy’s role throughout Matt Smith’s time-travelling. It is certainly difficult to imagine the Eleventh Doctor without his Amelia Pond, the girl that waited twelve years for her imaginary friend to come back in his police box (and then married a guy who topped it by waiting 2000 years for her ... It’s complicated). For two series, she has provided the feisty Scottish voice of the viewer; there to drag our lovable, yet often childish Doctor back to the realms of real-time. As their Tardis days were, unbeknownst to them, drawing to a close, it would have been unbefitting for the Doctor to pull a Sarah Jane and simply drop Amy and Rory off on Earth with a goodbye wave. Alternatively, for head-writer Steven Moffat to swing to the other extreme and kill the couple off would have been a sad ending that seemed harsh even for him. Of the finale, it can be said that a happy medium was

achieved. One criticism of the episode does fall with regard to its family viewing slot. Moffat has been behind many of the scariest and most upsetting episodes of the series reboot, from a tortured space whale to the nightmare inducing “Are you my mummy?” scenario all the way back in series one’s The Empty Child. Without giving too much away there are two particularly hairy moments that

come to mind; one involving Amy and Rory wavering over a cliff edge and a sequence with River Song that could have its basis in the Saw movies. So, tissue boxes at the ready, and small siblings safely behind sofa cushions, settle down for an episode that is a true testament to Amy and Rory Pond, a befittingly dramatic exit that will certainly pull at the Whovian heartstrings for a long while yet.

A ‘versus’ special for a show that’s always dividing opinions as CELEBRITY JUICE RETURNS

Keith Lemon, Holly Willoughbooby and Fearne Cotton are back on our screens and this can mean only one thing: Celebrity Juice is back! Keith Lemon is up to his usual antics, fetching the mickey out of guests one and all while generally pushing jokes as far as they will go. Surely no one would deny that Lemon’s Prince Harry in Las Vegas impersonation (yes he was completely naked) made for side-splitting viewing? Other hilarious first episode antics include Holly dragging Ronan Keating the length that Greg Rutherford jumped in the Olympics, toe-sucking, and one audience member with the world’s weirdest laugh. If that’s not variety I don’t know what is. The format of the show remains the same this series with the much-loved Lemon Head round and of course all the usual photo shopping of the contestants heads onto people in bizarre situations. Holly and Fearne are still willing team captains and there is a plethora of celebrity guests willing

to make fools of themselves - I’m talking about you Joey Essex, who is back in episode five giving us an insight into his mind ... or lack of it. No Joey, Russia does not border Wales! One of the brilliant things about this show is that nothing is off limits. A viewer should always be prepared to see a side of the contestants that you have never seen before, or will maybe never see again. A real gem in episode one shows Keith’s human side when he gives a sweet message to Fearne’s baby that would make even the most cold-hearted well up. Celebrity Juice is like reheated takeaway for breakfast: so wrong, but in all the right ways. Don’t knock it ‘til you’ve tried it!

So it’s true to say I have never thought much of Celebrity Juice, and as I sat watching Keith Lemon (Leigh Francis) narcissistically demean Holly “Willo-booby” and Fearn “How did she get pregnant?” Cotton in the latest in the new series, I felt I was wholly justified. Once a week, through the medium of social networking, a constant bombardment of Celebrity Juice statuses keep me up to date with the guests and Lemon’s idiosyncrasies, whether I want to or not. I was sick and tired of hearing about the programme before I’d even seen it properly, but I did try to keep an unbiased air, really I did. To me the show seems classically

Series airing Thursdays at 10pm on ITV2, catch up on ITVplayer now

hate

Zoe Jones

unfunny, it has all the celeb gossip of your local hair dressers and with all the humour of a sixth form common room. Each week Lemon regurgitates uninteresting tidbits, in between firing gags about how much he wants to sleep with the team captains. On average there is one funny gag per programme (if we’re lucky) and it is almost never from the lips of Lemon himself. When the witty genius of a show comes from Newton Faulkner turning his dreadlocks into a sleeping mask and pillow, you know you are in trouble. Watching Lemon weigh Colleen Nolan’s boobs by thoroughly feeling them up is definitely a show low-light, and it left me cringing behind a pillow in anticipation of the next attack on another transparently uncomfortable guest. Is it perhaps not time Mr. Francis put his Keith Lemon character to rest? And not just to reproduce yet another virtually identical, dim-witted, offensive nightmare just with slightly different fake injuries.


TELEVISION 09.10.2012 concrete.television@uea.ac.uk

review: series opener for new sitcom

www.concrete-online.co.uk

CUCKOO Jim Britton

The overriding feelings when watching BBC Three’s new comedy Cuckoo are disappointment and frustration. Given the talent of the pedigree comedy cast, one expects something more engaging than what is essentially a re-hash of every cultureclash sitcom ever written. The usually top-form stand up comedian Greg Davies (We Are Klang, The Inbetweeners) features in the role of Ken; a straight-laced father who is forced to welcome into the family his daughter’s new husband - a self appointed ‘spiritual ninja’ called Cuckoo, played by popular American writer-performerfilmmaker, Andy Samberg. While the concept could be worse, the show’s characters feel horrendously underwritten; Davies is miscast as the straight man and seems to lack the range to give his character any depth. The result is that Ken seems uninteresting and bland when playing off Samberg, who is probably the only interesting character in the series. Samberg is known for his knack of making the absurd funny on the hit US show Saturday Night Live, however Cuckoo writers Robin French and Kieron Quirke seem to have given him a character that is little more than a sketched out stereotype. Perhaps most ill-served of all is Helen Baxendale playing the ditzy wife and mother,

series return:

FRIDAY NIGHT DINNER Rianna Hudson

who tries hard to work with the poor writing but lacks the natural comedic timing to make the gags land. And whoever told Tyger DrewHoney that this show should be his follow up to Outnumbered ought to be ashamed; it’s true what your parents said, swearing isn’t big or clever, and doesn’t make up for poor writing. Despite all of these complaints, the plot could be worse. The first episode even manages to end on an interesting (if not slightly predictable) note, so we can but hope that first impressions are not all they seem.

This week saw the rib-tickling return of the Goodman family’s Friday Night Dinner to our Channel 4 tuned television screens. While it may have been shunted to the less appropriate scheduling slot of Sunday 10pm, the second series sees the full cast back and ready to work the scripts and nail the laughs. Inbetweener Simon Bird stars as the older brother to stand-up comedian Tom Rosenthal’s character, and there are plenty of laughs to be had at the twenty-something’s unceasing sibling rivalry. Playing mother to the pair is Tamsin

15 Greig (Black Books, Green Wing), alongside the serial screen star, Paul Ritter, as the oddball father of the family. No comedy cast is complete without Mark Heap (Green Wing, Spaced) playing his trademark cripplingly awkward character, this time known as Jim, a strange neighbour who has a habit of making unannounced visits every Friday with his dog Wilson. The charm of the show is the relatable family antics, whether it’s your brother sneaking salt into your drink or your dad having a nasty habit of shouting “s**t on it”. Writer and creator of the show is the BAFTA award-winning Robert Popper, also producer for Peep Show. The first series aired in February last year and met with great reception, so much so that the show has already been picked up for an American remake by Greg Daniels who was responsible for The Office (US) – because as we all know, you haven’t had success until your show has been regurgitated stateside. The new series will run six episodes and started on October 7th and this time there’s even a Christmas special to look forward to. So why not have your Friday night dinner on a Sunday this week, and catch the show at 10.05pm on Channel 4, or catch up online with 4oD.


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CREATIVE WRITING

www.concrete-online.co.uk

concrete.creativewriting@uea.ac.uk 09.10.2012

Prose Fiction Little Meetings A short story by Marian Davidson

The streetlamps were huge and swollen in the rain, and above the sky was cracked like concrete. The small hand of the railway station clock lifted itself painfully forward another minute. Twenty to six and it was almost dark already. Here were a few miserable people; dark and indistinct: charcoal lines drawn by a child’s wobbly hand, smudged in the downpour. There was a bench but no one was sitting on it; chewing gum lined its tiny crevices and the odd tribute to Mark, who Jane would “[heart] forever”, apparently. The clock groaned as it pulled itself up another minute and a bulky figure ducked under the cover of the station roof. She checked her watch, relieved until she noticed the delay. Why were all the bloody trains late all the time? If her grandfather was still around, he would be appalled. She looked around curiously at the other figures, relaxed now she knew she had time. They were all silent and impersonal, unwilling to make eye contact. Pulling her raincoat firmly over her backside, she sat on the bench.

panini too, please. Ham and cheese. She handed the money over. She collected her change. She waited. The clock dragged itself closer to the hour. “There you go, Miss. One regular coffee. Just waiting on your panini now.” She scanned the station as she waited for the drink to cool. That little girl’s duffle coat was a lovely shade of red. She remembered having one at that age, and little red wellies, too. Her mother had loved stereotypically dressing her children up to be cute. Her sister had liked it, too. From what Helena could remember of it, they hadn’t shared the same opinion. That little girl did look nice though, with her lopsided bunches and expensive clothes. As Helena watched, the girl slipped her hand slowly from her mother’s grasp. It went unnoticed and her face sank. She wandered off, dragging her foot behind her as if she could carve tracks in the concrete, while a pigeon eyed her curiously from above.

A couple not far from her were muttering heatedly to themselves while their child scuffed her foot in deep concentration on the ground. Standing a couple of feet away from them was an old woman, anxiously clutching a carpet bag with shaking fingers. It looked heavy and she looked tired, glancing agonisingly at the timetable and occasionally, disapprovingly, at the couple next to her. Helena wanted to ask her where she was going, but of course she didn’t. “Excuse me, would you like a hand with your bag?” “Oh no dear, that’s alright thank you.” “Off anywhere nice?” She looked at the woman’s sad face. Or not. Helena did not know the woman and she did not talk to her.

“One ham and cheese panini.” “Thanks.” She looked blandly at the man; he was much too enthusiastic to deserve a smile. Didn’t he know this was England? English people don’t smile in winter. The bench was still unoccupied and Helena quickly sat down again, eager to stake her claim even though no one else seemed interested in it. She squirmed until she was comfortable and squinted at the timetable again. She needed new glasses—her sight was getting worse and the lenses were becoming thicker. Susan kept telling her to get contacts, but when had she ever listened to Susan? What? Another half an hour, now? She had a good mind to complain! Maybe later, when she was home. Email was always the best way to confront people for Helena. It meant she didn’t actually have to talk to anyone.

She checked her watch again. So slow. Everything was so slow. The food counter was still open, thankfully, and she rummaged in her bag for some change. She would have a coffee please, decaffeinated if possible. Did they do decaf? They did? Great. Oh, and a

She took a sip and grimaced at the coffee’s bitterness. At least she had a bit more time to read her book before the train arrived. She popped her coffee on the floor eagerly and dug around in her bag. Ah, Secrets of a Lost Passion. Unbelievably corny, but she enjoyed

it nonetheless. She almost had to stop herself grinning indulgently. “What are you reading?” She snapped the book shut with a stifled yelp. The little girl was dangling over the back of the bench, her feet on the bottom of the seat, shoulders touching her ears. One of her bunches brushed Helena’s cheek. “Ah, hello there...little girl.” She cleared her throat nervously. “Hi.” She smiled. “What’s that book? It’s got a naughty picture on the front.” Helena hastily shoved it back in the bag. “No, that’s not naughty. That’s just- uh...two people hugging.” “Oh. My daddy does that with our cleaner, Lynda. Mummy’s telling him off about it.” Helena looked over her shoulder nervously. “Don’t worry- they haven’t noticed I’m gone. They don’t really notice when I go places they tell me not to or talk to people I shouldn’t. Like you.” She gave another angelic smile. “So what’s the book about?” “I think it’s a bit too adult for you,” Helena slipped it into her bag with a patronising smile. She’d never been good with kids. “What’s your name, then?” “I’m Alice,” she replied, swinging on the back of the bench and smacking Helena in the eye with her hair again. “I’m six and I’m more mature for my age then people think. My parents think I don’t understand them but I came top in my class in spelling last week and my teacher thinks I could move up a year early because I’m doing so well.” “That’s impressive. Your mummy and daddy must be proud.” Alice shook her head. “No, not really. They haven’t really asked me about it. They have more important things to talk about, like Lynda.” “Oh. Does this sort of thing happen often?” “Well, it was Tillie first and then Lynda. They think I don’t understand, but I do. They were being naughty in Mummy and Daddy’s bedroom. Everyone thinks I don’t know what happened, but I saw it.” “Oh.” She was feeling uncomfortable now.

“I don’t mind, really. I just watched cartoons all day in the playroom. I’m used to it now. So what’s the book about?” Helena laughed despite herself. “You’re persistent aren’t you?” “I just like knowing things, that’s all.” “Well—” “Where are you from? You look a bit homeless, if you don’t mind me saying. Granny would tell me off for saying that, but I don’t think it really matters, do you? Adults are always rude to each other.” “Well, I suppose—” “When I grow up, I don’t ever want to be an adult. I bet cartoons are much more fun than those books. My mummy wants a divorce, you know. But she said she can’t afford it so she’s not going to move out.” Helena looked over her shoulder to the parents. They weren’t arguing anymore. The father was glaring at the pavement and the mother was walking away, chattering on her mobile phone. “Hang on one moment Cheryl; Alice is bothering some stranger.” Alice looked over her shoulder and jumped off the back of the bench. “We’re going to visit my aunt, you know. She’s just had a little baby girl. I’ve got a cousin! Isn’t that fun?” Helena nodded encouragingly at her as the mother approached. “Actually, Cheryl, I better say goodbye now. The train will be here soon and we need to get to the platform...Okay...yes, you too. Okay...ta ra for now, bye...bye!” She swooped upon them in a mantle of perfume. “I do hope Alice hasn’t been bothering you much. Little children don’t have any manners, do they?” Alice’s face fell and she let her mother take her by the hand. “Oh no, she wasn’t bothering me at all...” “Ta ra for now!” Alice called over her shoulder as they went through the train door and were gone. Helena turned back again; the book was peeking at her from the folds of her bag, but she didn’t want to touch it now. It looked dirty and her panini was cold.


17

CREATIVE WRITING

09.10.2012 concrete.creativewriting@uea.ac.uk

www.concrete-online.co.uk

Poetry

The Cliff

A Thought

Flash Fiction by Sarah Jones

By Helen St John James

The sea roars at the base of the rock in a primal challenge, daring the bird to take its first flight on the salt-stiff wind. Without further hesitation, the bird launches itself into the air, flaps almost comically, and then plummets towards the heaving expanse of water below. Stupid ostrich.

Say there is another time and

listen to songs by our favourite artists and

another place and

let the wind soften our faces and

say there is a beach,

allow every line on our face to be one we have etched ourselves.

a beach where the air is so clear it tastes sweet and where the sea and the sky never meet,

Say this is our life…

there is just an endless stretch of blue. But it isn’t.

Cultivation of an Image

And say we go there, time means nothing…

By James Sykes don’t confuse any coolness

We sit down and let our toes curl in the warm sand,

for real coolness don’t fall

we draw circles on each other’s palms and

for the slogan on the cover

when the sun sets against the gentle sky,

“the energy of Rimbaud” hah

we sit by the flickering light and

and here we have his mosaic

laugh and play and

This is but a fleeting, transient moment of gaiety and in a rare flash it holds within it one truth: The realisation of life.

panoply an exhibition of fake tweed self-cut hair the sensation *often experienced by poets*

Icicle or Snowflake

of someone not quite

By Stephen Pester

passing over your grave In those chilling times I froze,

But you defy such logical thought.

Hardened to the point of icy bone.

The tip of your finger brushes against me

I would shut everyone out

and I melt like a snowflake,

from any more than the cold formalities of life.

my hard-headedly

I would point to this unique lattice of ice

cold-hearted ways

a real taste for whatever ‘this’

that lined my bones, as if to say,

no more

is the reeling in and out

how could you find a match to that?

a harmonising of *what the poet

Is this not a form destined for solitude?

but more like staking it out he claims to have once stayed at the Tower of Babel he is not to be trusted use your brain don’t be so obvious you’ll get

has done here* and *what the speaker is saying there*


GAMING

09.10.2012 concrete.gaming@uea.ac.uk

www.concrete-online.co.uk

Eurogamer Expo 2012

@Concrete_Gaming

19

Oliver Balaam & Sam Emsley Last weekend Concrete Gaming travelled all the way to London’s Earls Court to bring you the latest on all of the biggest upcoming releases at this year’s Eurogamer Expo. We played countless games and we’re going to get to them, but first we’re going to have to talk about a major problem with the show. We’re going to have to talk about Booth Babes. For those of you who don’t know, the term “Booth Babe” refers to the use of paid models to advertise inside of convention halls. This practice is upsettingly common at tech and videogame expos but it was downright endemic this year. One of the worst offenders were Virgin Media who hired scantily-clad models and pasted QR codes on the cheeks of their hot pants, encouraging visitors to take lewd, low angle photos of them. Ignoring for a moment the fact that literally nobody has ever used a QR code in their entire life; one has to ask exactly what this says about women in the tech industry? It says that women have no legitimate place there. It says that women are objects that, like race cars, companies can slap logos onto in order to sell things to men. It says these men are stupid and fundamentally, it depicts women as commodities. In an industry led by female creatives including Kim Swift (Portal), Amy Hennig (Uncharted)and Jade Raymond (Assassin’s Creed) it tells an unacceptable and misogynistic lie and it needs to stop. Thankfully after complaints from attendees Eurogamer have released a statement saying that they “will be issuing formal guidelines: Booth babes are Not OK.” Let’s hope it’s not an issue next year so we can concentrate on the games. There were a lot of sequels this year and while it might seem like a known quantity, Assassin’s Creed III still impressed. Its gameplay is still like no other: combining stealth, free-running and close combat seamlessly all within a shiny new engine. The real innovation though, came in the second of our two demos. Not content with being the best free-running game on the market, Assassin’s Creed has now become a contender for the best 18th century naval combat simulator. Players can take command of a Man-of-War in what is actually a fairly well executed and enjoyable departure from the standard combat. It takes a bit of getting used to but the challenge of drawing parallel with

the other ships and trying to make sure your cannons weren’t wildly off target was unique and enjoyable. Another highly anticipated sequel was the real time strategy game, Company of Heroes 2. Set on the Eastern Front

accurate slices is a more involving way to finish off an enemy than hammering a button in a quick time event. How these mechanics will fit together in the final game is yet to be seen however because at the moment it feels like a collection

Oliver Balaam it focuses on how weather turned the tide of WWII. This means that weather effects change the way units move and function as well as impeding their vision. Add to this improved sound design, unit intelligence and path finding and this is shaping up to be a faithful but safe follow up to the 2006 original. One of the longest queues of the show was for Halo 4, the first entry in a new trilogy of titles from a new development team. We got hands on with the multiplayer and it was immediately apparent that 343 Industries have put their own mark on the series. A visually stunning game both graphically and artistically, it moves at a faster clip than any previous series entries with sprint available to every player and bullets doing a lot more damage. Indeed the game is so responsive that comparisons have been drawn to Call of Duty but fans needn’t worry, this is still very much a Halo game. Another series being trusted to a new developer was Metal Gear: Rising, which has been placed in the capable hands of Platinum Games. They’ve made a substantial departure from the series’ classic stealthy gameplay, choosing instead to make a hack and slash action game in which you play Raiden, a cyborg ninja. The individual mechanics work well and the ability to slow down time and make

of interesting but disparate mechanics slotted together in a relatively linear and simplistic format. With an endless cacophony of gunfire ringing from speakers and fully grown men sporting camouflage it’s easy to write off the expo as a violent and decidedly masculine affair. Taking a closer look though, we also found some absolute gems for the pacifist in us all. Sim City, in which you assume the role of Mayor and plan a town exactly as you like it, was one of these gems. You can fend off all of the industrial evils and build a carbon neutral utopia, or be tempted by the swathes of riches that come with big business and build a bustling metropolis (at the expense of a polar bear or two). The game itself looks stunning and with a modernised user interface heavily inspired by Google Maps, it’s easier to play than any previous instalments. The Unfinished Swan, in which you are presented with a white screen and explore the world by splattering it with black paint to reveal its geometry, was also a serene experience. Gorgeous high contrast visuals and a natural urge to explore aside, it is not yet apparent how involving the gameplay will be but we’re intrigued to find out. Thankfully, the expo wasn’t all sequels and reboots. A few original titles really

stood out, none more than Dishonoured. It tells the tale of Corvo, a superhuman assassin set against the aristocracy of the Dickensian town of Dunwall. The blend of gothic, British turn-of-the-century and brutalist sci-fi architecture and design means the game is a richly detailed treat for the eyes and thankfully, the gameplay is just as elaborate. Players are encouraged to approach each assassination as a child would a sandbox, experimenting with multiple routes and play styles. You can sneak your way right to your target and right out again, fight and kill everyone in sight or try something in-between. Factor in supernatural powers and you will be possessing your target and making them commit suicide; attacking them by spawning plague rats and even escaping by possessing a fish and swimming for freedom. A bold, playful and ambitious title, Dishonoured is our game of the show. This year’s expo was another success but with this generation of consoles drawing to a close, sequel fatigue is beginning to set in. While new titles weren’t entirely absent it’s going to take a new generation of consoles, expected in 12-18 months, to kick-start the games industry once again.


20

@concrete_arts

www.concrete-online.co.uk

ARTS

concrete.arts@uea.ac.uk 09.10.2012

ARTS HISTORY : ALFRED DAMON RUNYON

Sophie Szynaka This week coincides with the anniversary of the birth of the American writer and journalist Alfred Damon Runyon. Born in October 1884, Runyon was a highly influential columnist, sports-writer, and author of his time. He was known for his brash, bold, racy style that reflected America at the time of his writing. Runyon was born in Manhattan to a family of newspaper-men. He grew up in Colorado and began contributing pieces to local newspapers while still at school. He served in the Spanish-American War in 1898, after enlisting in the army at 14 years old, and then returned to journalism. He later became a war correspondent for Hearst papers during WWI, and stayed on there as a columnist after the war. Despite specializing in sports, he was arguably most famous for

his humorous stylized short stories, which through his own invented jargon, dealt wryly with the seedy side of New York City underground life that grew out of the Prohibition era (a national ban of the manufacture, transportation and sale of alcohol from 1920 to 1933). Described as “The Chronicler of Broadway” due to works such as Guys and Dolls (1931), Runyon introduced to the nation the lingo and characters of the New York underworld, using colourful nicknames such as “Good Time Charlie”, “Harry the Horse” and “Dave the Dude”. The musical and film Guys and Dolls (1950 and 1955 respectively) were based on his stories. Runyon reached the height of his popularity in the 1930s, writing a newspaper feature “As I See It”. In 1940 he collaborated with Howard Lindsay, to co-write A Slight Case of

Murder, which became successful on Broadway. From 1941 he worked as a film producer, and 20 of his stories (two of which are also plays) became motion pictures during and after his lifetime. In 1967 he died from throat cancer, leaving a huge legacy behind him. Besides the arts, his heritage includes the Damon Runyon Cancer Research Foundation set up by his friend and fellow journalist, Walter Winchell, and the annual Damon Runyon Award, which the Denver Press Club assigns to a prominent journalist. Runyon’s success as somewhat of a “Renaissance man” of journalism is clear through his role in various aspects of publishing. His contributions to literature, theatre and film, are still enjoyed, remembered and performed to this day.

REVIEW : JEREMY VINE Guest Lecture, Wednesday 3rd October UEA’s Literature Festival 2012 Hatty Farnham

Last week Jeremy Vine delighted an audience of students and grannies in UEA’s Lecture Theatre One. Vine recently released a book, It’s All News To Me, which takes the form of part-diary, partautobiography as it looks back on the broadcaster’s 25 years at the BBC. Jeremy began the evening by explaining that to survive in the BBC one must be willing to endure constant humiliation. Reading from his book he described how his first encounter with broadcasting was walking into the BBC to find an employee screaming that he “had worked here for 40 years!” to the receptionist who simply replied “I am sorry, but those are the rules.

No pass, no entry”. After his reading, Jeremy turned the corner onto memory lane, and took the audience with him to the venue of his first gig as a teenager, into the studio of his radio debut, past the type writers in his first journalistic job, through Westminster, to the poverty, cross-fire and fond farewells he encountered in Africa, and to his Today studio in the BBC. Despite the hilarity of Vine’s stories and tongue-in-cheek attitude, one may have been forgiven for getting a little emotional when Vine began to talk of his time as the BBC’s African correspondent. He told how he was struck with the notion that

the “most important words come from the least important people”, when his African housekeeper, Paulina, asked him to write her a speech for her son’s funeral. At first confident that, as a writer, he could do such an important speech justice, he was struck with his own arrogance when he realised that no words which he wrote could be as loaded, powerful or beautiful as those which Paulina came up with herself: “I will miss my son because he made me a mother. No one will call me mother again”. The ideology of the everyman has become integral to his work for Radio 2 and Vine described how the BBC relies

on the stories, the claims, and the footage of the average citizen. “The people in the background”, he says, “have all the power, and they speak the most important words”. It is not only the public that have the power, Vine explains, but the staff behind the scenes in the studio as well. Vine tells a comical story about Ann Robinson. Bossiness, he says, gets you nowhere in broadcasting. After being rude to the staff in the studio, she, embarrassingly, found herself live on TV without a working mic, which she acknowledged with the words “am I meant to plug this in myself?”. “It works better if you plug it in the socket” was the cool reply.


ARTS

09.10.2012 concrete.arts@uea.ac.uk

www.concrete-online.co.uk

ARTS POLITICS: WOMEN IN ART

@concrete_arts

21

Judy Chicago and The Dinner Party Laura Thompson In 1979 the painter Judy Chicago, a major contributor to the feminist art movement, created one of the most elaborately emblematic feminist works of art ever made: The Dinner Party. Chicago’s conception began five years prior to the exhibition, and started with the idea of a dinner table set for 13, with painted plates and placemats embroidered by more than 100 women under Chicago’s direction. In the space of four years the number tripled and three tables were made, forming a triangle; the traditional feminine symbol dating back to pre-history, but which also served as the symbol of the

equalized world, which feminists had sought for and demanded. Each plate and place mat encapsulated a woman who had distinguished herself in the history of Western civilization. Each side of the table illustrates women within specific chronological periods, from pre-history to the 20th century. The table is set for 39 guests, of which include the Egyptian queen Hatshepsut, American painter Georgia O’Keefe, and British novelist Virginia Woolf, among other artists and writers. The female celebration is continued in how the floor of the installation is decorated in triangular, porcelain tiles naming

a further 999 distinguished women, suggesting that those at the table “had risen from a foundation provided by other women’s accomplishments”. This exhibition was a landmark in the progressive feminist movement that began emerging in the late 20th century. Despite the dramatic story that comes with this work (concerning its response and the turbulent fight to keep it exhibited), in retrospect it is easy to ask what was unusual about it. Throughout most of the 20th century the art system was predominantly masculine, and though today the feminist voice has become inherent in

all manners of “arts”, The Dinner Party was then innovative in how it was a female centered project. The importance of this work is fathomed by Chicago’s remark that the women in The Dinner Party tried to make themselves heard, fought to retain their influence, attempted to do what they wanted. They wanted to exercise their rights to which they were entitled by virtue of their birth, their talent, their genius, and their desire. But they were prohibited from doing so – were ridiculed, ignored, and maligned by historians for attempting to do so – because they were women.

Quality Street-box colours. The scenery was magnificent, with the symbolic broken mirror and striking organ having taken inspiration from art deco design. The second half saw Belle lounging on a delicate rose bed followed by the Beast scouring the stage on a built-in climbing wall. The only time that we managed to tear our eyes away from the piece was to giggle at the Granny in front who, during the middle of the first half, cried “IS THAT THE END?”, as the Beast jumped on the table in a climatic crescendo. Her arm was patted in a

“shhh” kind of way by her daughter as the dancing continued on stage. We would highly recommend giving ballet a chance. It needn’t be stuffy, prudish and terrifyingly middle-class. The Northern Ballet produces such accessible and thoroughly entertaining performances that we’re sure you too will be engrossed. In fact, they are already preparing an adaptation of The Great Gatsby for next summer, a difficult task to translate such embellished language into a physical performance, but there is no doubt that the company will pull it off with effortless ease.

REVIEW: BEAUTY AND THE BEAST BALLET

Theatre Royal - 2nd - 6th October Jess Beech & Katie Nertney

Beauty and the Beast, that’s the one about the dancing teapots, yeah? For two exceedingly poor students, we felt extremely cultured, clutching our programmes and notepads whilst trying to decide if we had enough money between us to rent a pair of opera glasses. To be honest, we needn’t have worried; for ballet novices like us, and those who have not dabbled in Disney since their earlier years, the Northern Ballet’s production was both easy to follow and exceedingly beautiful to watch. Captivating from the off, firstly due

to the athletic build of the dancers, each arabesque and pirouette exposed muscles we didn’t even know existed. Once we got past our jealousy at Belle’s thighs, and admiration of the Beast’s behind, the grace and poise of the dancers was hard to ignore. The mixture of comedy, acting, and stunning choreography was flawless. Each individual costume was exquisitely crafted in silk and taffeta which billowed with each movement. The colours reflected the mood and emotions of each scene, ranging from sultry greens and blacks to vibrant


22

COMPETITIONS

www.concrete-online.co.uk

concrete.competitions@uea.ac.uk 09.10.2012

1

across

2 3

1. Obsessive/too close (6) 3. Singer of new James Bond theme (5) 4. Vivaldi’s Four ------- (7) 5. Rebounding noise (4) 7. Building material made of crushed stone (8) 8. One who communicates using only the mind (8) 12. River in both Brazil and Peru (6) 14. Eastern religion whose followers seek enlightenment (8) 15. Element used in computer circuits (7)

4 5

6

7 8

9

10

11

down

12

1. Creator of No.5 (6) 2. Simpler than (6) 6. Both students and bees frequent this place (4) 7. President of Venezuela (6) 8. Often mocked miniature wig (6) 9. Clawed, edible sea creature (7) 10. Additionally (3) 11. Country ruled by a monarch (11) 13. Leader of the Opposition (8)

13

14

15

WIN A £50 BOUX AVENUE GIFT

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Each 3x3 box, row and column must contain the numbers 1-9

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3 8

1

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HARD SUDOKU 3

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The label for lingerie lovers celebrates all shapes and sizes with this season’s “Embrace your Curves” campaign modelled by size 16 Australian supermodel, Robyn Lawley. The collection includes an array of beautiful styles in jewel tones, luscious lace and seductive animal print, with a stunning range of nightwear, accessories, and lingerie in sizes 30A-40H and 6-20, so whatever you choose, you’re guaranteed to be spoilt for choice. To view the full collection visit Boux Avenue in Chapelfield, Norwich or visit www.bouxavenue.com. To enter simply answer the question: Who is the star of Boux Avenue’s “Embrace Your Curves” campaign? Send your answer to concrete.competitions@uea.ac.uk

CROSSWORD COMPETITION - WIN FLUX PAVILION TICKETS AND T-SHIRTS! Josh Steele, a.k.a Flux Pavilion, is undeniably this year’s hottest UK export and is already making a name for himself worldwide, having just played packed out shows at Ultra and SXSW and this past weekend saw him play a landmark show at Coachella. Off the back of this he has also just announced his first US headline tour which will see him play 28 dates all across the country. Flux Pavilion has kicked off his ‘Standing on a Hill’ tour on 4 October at Cardiff Solus and will make his way around the country, ending in Glasgow on 20 October. More importantly, he is stopping at UEA on 17 October for a gig that is bound to be fantastic. Even better, a lucky Concrete reader will get to see him absolutely free! Concrete also has Flux Pavilion T-Shirts to give away to the winner and runners-up. For your chance to win this exceptional prize, just fill in the crossword puzzle above, write your email address below, and hand it in to Reception at Union House by midday on Monday 15 October.

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1

9 1

6 6

7

We’ve teamed up with lingerie haven Boux Avenue and are giving you the chance to win a £50 gift card to spend in store or at www.bouxavenue.com.

5

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Flux Pavilion Standing On a Hill Tour Tickets can also be bought from the UEA Box Office. Find them on Campus, or online at: www.ueaticketbookings.co.uk or call 01603 508050


LISTINGS

09.10.2012 concrete.listings@uea.ac.uk

Tuesday 9 October Off The Wall Music Night presented by Monster feat. Young Guns w/ We are the In Crowd + Your Demise Price £12.50 Advance 7pm The Waterfront Wednesday 10 October

Safe Sex LCR Price £3.50 Advance 10pm UEA LCR

Literary Festival – T.C.Boyle Price £7 Advance 6.30pm Lecture Theatre 1

Thursday 11 October Errors presented by Norwich Sound and Vision @ The Waterfront Studio Price £10 Advance 11pm The Waterfront

Mayday Parade Price £12.50 Advance 7.30pm The Waterfront Friday 12 October Madge Gillies talks about her book “The Barbed Wire University” Price £3 (Includes a glass of wine) 6.30pm Waterstones, Castle Street Reckless Love + Mallory Knox @ The Waterfront Studio Price £11 Advance 7pm The Waterfront

9 October - 22 October Non-Stop 90s Price £4.50/£3.50 Advance NUS 10pm-3am The Waterfront Saturday 13 October The A List Price £4.50 Advance 10.30pm-3am UEA LCR Comedy Club presents Peacock and Gamble Price £5 Advance 7.30pm UEA LCR Meltdown Price £4.50/ £3.50 Advance NUS 10pm-3am The Waterfront The Soft + The Lost Levels presented by John Peel Festival of New Music @ The Waterfront Studio Price £4.50/£3.50 advance NUS 10pm The Waterfront

Wednesday 17 October Flux Pavilion: Standing on a Hill Tour @ UEA Price £12.50 Advance 7.30pm UEA LCR Thursday 18 October Mr Scruff – Keep it Unreal Tour 9pm-2am Tickets £12.50/£9 adv. conc. UEA LCR Labrinth 7pm Tickets £15 UEA LCR

Trivium + As I Lay Dying, Caliban + Upon a Burning Body @UEA Price £17.50 Advance 6pm UEA LCR UEA Ticket Bookings Visit the Box Office on Campus Online: www.ueaticketbookings.co.uk Or Phone 01603 508 050

Saturday 20 October Ceilidh with Stookey Blue Price £8/£7 Advance 7pm St Thomas’ Church Hall The A List Price £4.50 Advance 10.30pm-3am UEA LCR

Monday 15 October Milton Jones w/ Matt Richardson and Chris Martin Price £12.50 Advance 8pm UEA LCR Tuesday 16 October Club Retro Price £3.50 Advance 10pm-1.30am UEA LCR

The Nightingales presented by John Peel Festival of New Music @ The Waterfront Studio Price £4.50/£3.50 Advance NUS 10pm The Waterfront

Photo: Ga Chun Yau

23

www.concrete-online.co.uk


Iss u e2

NU 72

Photo: Holly Maunders

VE E

Venue - Issue 272  

Inside Venue this fortnight: we got down to London Fashion week, the end of Amy Pond, an interview with Luke Ritchie, a review of Looper, an...

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