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Celluloid Screams Eurogamer Expo This Many Boyfriends

Cameron, the Artful Dodger, p.5


SHORT FUSE

Sparks.

It’s not that we don’t like hip-hop, it’s just...

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ip-hop is dead. Or at least in Sheffield it is, as there appears to be a distinct lack of student interest and consequent media coverage that defies the genre’s popularity elsewhere in the country. From the most popular nights out to the music articles written in local and university newspapers, it is indie, pop and dubstep that dominates, while hip hop, clinging to the corners of student consciousness, settles for a low key Thursday night and a couple of disparaging words in a rare review. Indeed, in the only hip-hop reviews I have seen in Forge Press, both Drake’s Take Care and Tyga’s Careless World were awarded low marks, with the popularity of the latter’s ‘Rack City’ being met with total incredulity by the reviewer who completely dismissed its merits. Sure, the form, explicit lyricism and subject matter are not easily accessible and have traditionally left hip-hop marginalised with a public who feel they cannot relate to it.

The increasing commerciality of rap, where the likes of Dizzee Rascal and Wiley have had to adjust their style seems to be an admission from the artists themselves that hip-hop in its purest form is not acceptable. It’s rap, but watered down. Hip pop. So perhaps students studying a degree in the north of England are likewise unable to relate to the stylistic and cultural differences present in hip-hop. Or are they just unwilling? A stereotype that plagues hip-hop and seems particularly prevalent amongst students is that as a form, rap is unintelligent, synonymic with ‘chavs’ and not a legitimate craft. Maybe then, in Sheffield, the students and media alike refuse to seriously listen or engage intellectually with it. One thing that those reviews scream in the hiphop vacuum of Sheffield is that while hip-hop may be dead, nobody here really cares.

Editorial This is our editorial. It contains words. We like words. Nah just kidding, we’d never cheapen Forge Press with such a lazy cop-out. In this issue we’ve got a chat with Leeds-based indie-pop troupe This Many Boyfriends, as well as a look at Celluloid Screams, the horror film festival now in its fourth year. Arts have questioned the cuts to funding. And finally, Games went to Eurogamer Expo. Don’t forget, if you tweet any of us and include #shortestfuse, you could make it onto our back page. If you’re worried that you haven’t written for us yet, don’t fret. You can still get involved by heading to future meetings. Alternatively, drop us an email or pop in to the hub for a chat. We’re dead friendly. Coral Williamson Arnold Bennett

Alex Mason

In my day, games were played on boards

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Today we are presented with well-oiled feats of technology with realistic motion, impressive physics, fantastic script and voice acting to support an often twisting and engrossing story. Graphics are obviously the most noticeable difference between generations, while some people will say graphics aren’t everything, they definitely have a large effect on immersion.

Some games today are simply works of art, something that previous generations simply can’t compete with. Gameplay is also unavoidably clunky compared to newer smooth productions - yet another thing that people with nostalgiagoggles seem to overlook. This doesn’t mean to say that if you revisit these games from your childhood you’ll love every

Down-ton with the Emmys

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he Emmys fell on September 23 this year, and I can’t help but feel underwhelmed by the whole

thing. In past years the awards ceremony was highly prestigious and highly exciting, up there with the likes of the Oscars, but does anyone really care about this TV award anymore? Of the many awards ceremonies that still stand today, it appears that interest in the Emmys is the most dwindling. With award titles such as Outstanding Hairstyling For A Single-Camera Series (which went to British Drama Downton Ab-

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Friday October 5 2012

carina of Time, Tetris, Goldeneye. These games are rightly seen as gaming greats, innovative milestones whose effects can still be seen in games today. However, when it is argued that these games still stand up against today’s generation, you really see the power of nostalgia at work.

bey), I can’t help but question the credibility and relevance of this cliché-ridden tradition; one that saw its 64th broadcast this year. When I find myself more interested in what the actors are wearing than which awards they have won, I have to question how important the Emmys actually is. Yes, it is still a prestigious award, but with newer shows like the People’s Choice Awards, that have more involvement and input from the public, it seems like the Emmys has been pushed aside. A special appearance from Michael J. Fox to present Modern Family with the “Outstanding Comedy Series” award was

a personal highlight. Fox was greeted with a standing ovation from the star-studded audience, and it was a pleasure to watch this icon of both TV and film. A positive point that I feel it is necessary to make is that the Emmys - outdated or not - continues to recognise the outstanding contributions that have been made to television over the years. While it may be necessary to work harder to keep the public interested, the Emmys has stood the test of time and will hopefully continue to do so for many years to come. Shelby Storey

second, but for someone who has not played the games before, the fun will be limited. While I still hold these games in very high regard, as triumphs of the industry at time of release, each time I hear how Ocarina of Time is the ‘best game ever’ and GoldenEye 007 is still the best first person shooter, I can’t help but wince. Reece Nunn

This issue’s cover was designed by Manuel Andrs Fuentes Zepeda, who is awesome.


Screen’s Dan Meier had a chat with Rob Nevitt, the festival director of Celluloid Screams, to find out what it’s all about. What is Celluloid Screams, and how does this year’s compare with previous years? Celluloid Screams is a horror festival that’s been going since 2009; a three day celebration of all things horror from all over the world. There seems to be a groundswell of excitement about it that’s gone through the roof this year. I’d like to think that that’s down to the quality of the programme; we’re opening with Sightseers, which is the new film by Ben Wheatley who did Kill List, so that’s a great one for us to be opening with. He’s one of the UK’s most visionary directors and he’s going to be coming along to a Q&A as well. People seem to have really bought into it this year on a level that’s unprecedented so we’re really pleased. What other events are you most looking forward to?

great. All the artists produced really interesting work and people latched onto it; it gave an extra element to the festival. So we were determined to do it again this year; we’ve taken the history of Celluloid Screams so far and all the classic horror films that we’ve shown, and each of the artists selected a film from that list, with a view to create an alternative film poster. Each of them is bringing their own style to the table. Each year Celluloid Screams shows a secret film, could you give us a clue about this year’s? Absolutely not! The secret film was born out of necessity really; the first year we had what turned out to be the UK premiere of Paranormal Activity, which is a huge thing to get in your first year of a festival. The distributor basically said t o us,

Who do you think are the best people currently working in horror cinema? I think Ti West is a really good one; I really like his work, like The Innkeepers and The House of the Devil. In a way I think we’re almost waiting for the new “old guard”, but maybe we’re wrong to do that. There’s always talk of whether we’ll get the likes of Romero, Carpenter, Hooper and people like that for this generation. I also really like Jason Eisener who did Hobo with a Shotgun, it’s going to be interesting to see what he does next. This year we’re screening a film by the Canadian genre outfit Astron-6; they’re a collective of filmmakers who make

We’re bringing over a Brazilian filmmaker who lives in New York called Dennison Ramalho; we’ve got a real dedication to showcasing new talent, so we’ve been trying for a few years to do this retrospective of his short films. He’s a really interesting filmmaker with some really dark, twisted ideas. It will be a good one for anyone who’s interested in new, groundbreaking horror and also for anyone who’s interested in the practical side of filmmaking. He’s fresh blood, as it were! “will you Running alongside Celluloid k e e p Screams there’s an art exhibi- it a tion called Paper Cuts, what secret?” does that involve? and I said, “… We did an art exhibition for the we can do.” first time last year; it was a bit And people of an experiment, where we got really bought a collection of local artists and into it; it was sold invited them to produce a piece out on the basis of of work based on the brief of “what could it be?” So ‘Horror’, and the response was we’ve done it ever since!

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With all the complaints about modern horror films just being sequels, remakes and ‘torture porn’, do you worry about the state of horror cinema?

Why do you think we like to watch scary movies?

I don’t worry about it to be honest, because I think part of my mission with this festival is to show people that there is a world beyond that. The business is what it is and that’s the unfortunate truth; mainstream Hollywood genre production is largely based on ‘which existing franchises are people familiar with, and how can we wring money out of it?’ I think the ‘torture porn’ thing is entirely a media invention; I don’t really think it exists, for one, and it’s a label that really gets my back up as well because it’s got this backhanded insinuation about horror fans. You could argue that what people would consider ‘torture porn’ is the exact same thing as what was being done in The Hills Have Eyes, The Texas Chain Saw Massacre, arguably Psycho. It’s all the same sort of subject matter that’s being dealt with, so would you call Hitchcock a “torture porn” director? There’s good and bad in all sorts of genre really, but it doesn’t worry me because we always find the good stuff. There’s so much being made all over the world and this year we’ve got films from Argentina,

I think on a basic level we’re almost living vicariously but not really; it’s an experience, but not in reality. That’s a part of it, but for me it’s always been a sense of community with fans. In the same way that you go to see your favourite band and everyone there is in the same mindset, you go to a horror festival and you’re amongst real hardcore fans who are prepared to give everything a shot; they’re not just going to see Paranormal Activity 4, they’ll come to us and they’ll watch a movie that they might otherwise never see. There’s nothing better than watching a bunch of great, new, interesting horror movies with a load of like-minded people! What is your favourite horror film and why? I go between Suspiria and a few different classics; Don’t Look Now, Alien, The Exorcist… there are so many! But Suspiria is an all-out assault on the senses, it’s nightmarish, it’s kind of like a fairytale, and every time I see it I notice something different. Everything from the visuals through to the soundtrack is just incredible. Sound like your kind of thing? Head to p.4 to see Screen’s preview of the festival.

Tickets: £2.50

Available from the SU box office

Saturday October 6: The Avengers: 3.30pm, 7.30pm

Saturday October 13: Prometheus: 3.30pm, 7.30pm

Sunday October 14: The Pirates! Band of Misfits: 3.30pm, 7.30pm

hen an unexpected enemy emerges that threatens global safety and security, Nick Fury, Director of the international peacekeeping agency known as S.H.I.E.L.D., finds himself in need of a team to pull the world back from the brink of disaster. Spanning the globe, a daring recruitment effort begins! Starring Robert Downey Jr, Chris Evans, Chris Hemsworth, Mark Ruffalo, Scarlett Johansson, and Samuel L. Jackson, the cast of The Avengers is almost as impressive as the plethora of superheros they inhabit on-screen.

team of scientists travels through the universe on the spaceship ‘Prometheus’ on a voyage to investigate alien life forms. The team of scientists becomes stranded on an alien world, and as they struggle to survive it becomes clear that the horrors they experience are not just a threat to themselves, but to all of mankind. Set in the same universe as cult classic Alien, Prometheus is a prequel, and origin story, attempting to tell the story of the classic xenomorphs we know and love, and the species that gave them life.

n The Pirates! Band of Misfits, Hugh Grant stars in his first animated role as the luxuriantly bearded Pirate Captain. With a rag-tag crew at his side (Martin Freeman, Brendan Gleeson, Russell Tovey, and Ashley Jensen), and seemingly blind to the impossible odds stacked against him, the Captain has one dream: to beat his bitter rivals Black Bellamy (Jeremy Piven) and Cutlass Liz (Salma Hayek) to the much coveted Pirate Of The Year Award. It’s a quest that takes our heroes from the shores of exotic Blood Island to the foggy streets of Victorian London.

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Sunday October 7: Meet outside Goodwin Sports centre, £3; 7pm ‘til 8pm

Brazil, Chile; there’s stuff being made in different corners of the world that doesn’t adhere to this model of cynical mainstream production.

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Fuse.

ave you ever looked at a mass of water and thought it a desirable place to splash, and writhe, and play? If so, waterpolo might just be for you. Waterpolo’s a sport that requires a team to pass a ball up through the pool in order to score a goal. It’s kind of like football, but in water, and you’ve got to wear some dubious clobber. Obviously it goes without saying that a basic grasp of swimming is required, otherwise waterpolo becomes oddly like Russian roulette, in that the fear of death is ever present.

really low-budget stuff like the one we’re screening this year, which is called Manborg. It’s a kind of throwback to VHS action/ horror movies from the 80s.

Friday October 5 2012

GIAG: Film Unit Waterpolo

Q&A

SHORT FUSE

CELLULOID SCREAMS.

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SCREEN

Feature.SHEFFIELD’S HORROR FESTIVAL

If you need to satisfy your lust for blood, then put down that hammer and head to Celluloid Screams, Sheffield’s own horror film festival Words: Dan Meier

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alloween is a time for us all to dress up in stupid costumes and act like idiots; one of many customs that students share with children, like spending all day eating cereal, watching TV and crying.

One of the most exciting of these guests for Nevitt is Brazilian filmmaker Dennison Ramalho, whose short film retrospective will be followed by a Q&A in which you can ask him questions like “how did you do that?” and “why did you do that? WHY?!”

Unlike children, however, we can spend our Halloween watching horror films. Sorry children, but you tiny morons just have to make do with some of the scarier Pixar movies; Cars is absolutely terrifying, and there’s that scene in Finding Nemo where Nemo gets gutted and eaten in front of his dad. (That might not happen.)

When Nevitt says “horror from all over the world” he really does mean all over. From Chile comes Hidden in the Woods, an “inspired by true events” shocker-in-a-forest that promises to challenge even the most hardened horror fan. Argentina brings us Memory of the Dead, a creepily surreal looking comedy/horror film. Canada delivers Manborg; a sci-fi/horror B movie throwback about a soldier who is killed in battle, only to be brought back to life as a cyborg in order to fight demons in a dystopian future. See, now you’re listening.

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For those of us who like blood and guts with our popcorn, there’s Celluloid Screams, Sheffield’s own horror film festival at the wonderful Showroom Cinema from October 26-28. It is, in the words of Festival Director Rob Nevitt (interviewed on p.3), “a three day celebration of all things horror from all over the world.”

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As Hollywood churns out increasingly lazy and boring horror films, the most interesting new additions to the genre are to be found elsewhere; Celluloid Screams showcases a lovingly handpicked selection of these interesting and original movies, which are sure to make you think, laugh and of course scream more than the latest Hollywood remake ever could. Opening the festival is Sightseers, the latest film from Ben Wheatley; the man behind the handsmashingly brilliant Kill List. He’ll be participating in a Q&A after the screening; an extremely exciting prospect for any fan of British horror. In fact there are a whole load of special guests appearing at this year’s Celluloid Screams; a wide range of directors, actors and producers. This is an excellent opportunity to see the people responsible for these horrific and bloody pieces of cinema, and marvel at just how well adjusted they seem in real life.

If that hasn’t intrigued you – presumably if you’re dead or something – then look to the homegrown horror on display at Celluloid Screams; the lowbudget British movie Entity follows a TV crew “in a remote region of Siberia”. As opposed to one of those vibrant, bustling regions of Siberia. And if it’s zombies you’re after, then zombies you shall have; Before Dawn sees a couple’s countryside break rudely interrupted by a pesky zombie epidemic. From the USA, there’s plenty to choose from including Resolution, the story of a drug intervention gone wrong. Horribly, horribly wrong. Then there’s V/H/S, a found-footage anthology movie about a group of misfits sent to retrieve a VHS tape; a series of short films unfold, by a range of directors including Ti West, showing us terrifying tales of nightclubs, road trips and Skype. Maybe you hate the predictable safety of knowing what film you’re going to see. Fortunately for you, Celluloid Screams shows a secret film each year, and this year it’s… well it’s a secret, obviously. But in the past there have been such (un)pleasant surprises as Snowtown and Paranormal Activity.

There’s also a selection of short films, for the horror fan who’s short of time; maybe they’re writing a dissertation, or need to rush off to torture some animals. These horror shorts come not only from the UK and the USA, but also from Mexico, France, Canada, Spain and Germany, terrifying audiences in a range of different languages. To name a few of these short films; Metal Creepers is the story of a glam metal band whose music has magic powers, Odokuro is about the skeleton of a rat-monkey which comes to life and Play Dead follows a pack of dogs in a zombie apocalypse. Running alongside Celluloid Screams is Paper Cuts, a month-long art exhibition also at the Showroom. This year, a collection of Sheffield artists have produced alternative movie posters for classic horror films which have been screened at Celluloid Screams, including The Thing, The Evil Dead and Eraserhead. Paper Cuts is already up and running, so go and check it out now. Right now. Stop reading this and go now. Talking of classic horror films, Celluloid Screams shows its share of loved genre staples as well as showcasing all this exciting new talent. This year, Dario Argento’s Opera takes the stage once again in a 25th anniversary celebration. Meanwhile, Clive Barker’s Nightbreed has been lovingly re-cut to bring the 1990 version even closer to Barker’s epic vision, making Nightbreed: The Cabal Cut an essential watch for fans of horror, Clive Barker and weird looking monsters. Closing this year’s Celluloid Screams is Excision, the lovely story of a surgery-obsessed teenaged girl. So get down to the Showroom Cinema and prepare to be repulsed and delighted, scared and confused by this thoroughly impressive selection of thoroughly depraved films. The best kind. Celluloid Screams runs from October 26-28 at the Showroom Cinema. For information and tickets visit celluloidscreams.co.uk


Feature.

ARTS

ARTS FUNDING CUTS

‘Beautiful Morana Dysgeusia Painting for Jarvis (with Diamonds)’, which has been lent to the Graves Gallery by Jarvis Cocker

The government are on a funding cuts rampage and Sheffield is suffering. Badly.

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t is said that, in the early 1940s, the chancellor of the exchequer turned to Churchill and suggested that funding to the arts be cut in order to help fund Britain’s war effort. In response to this, Churchill supposedly replied, “then what are we fighting for?” Knowing that a society without the arts is greatly impoverished, Churchill maintained funding to this sector for the duration of his premiership. In this context, it seems crazy that Sheffield’s Graves Gallery has suffered so greatly at the hands of government arts funding cuts that Jarvis Cocker felt the need to lend the gallery a Damien Hirst.

“Looking in to funding cuts in detail, a vicious cycle emerges”

“Somerset County Council has cut 100 per cent of its arts provision”

“The arts are indispensible. Without them the world is a colourless place” Museums Sheffield is just about surviving, but the next few years will not be easy for them, or any other arts organisations in this country. And with no sign that the cuts will end any time soon, I am left wondering whether this government understands the value that culture and the arts bring to this country at all. Amy Claire Thompson

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Third Angel (theatre) • Received £33,373 in 2011/12 • Will not receive any funds this year Access Arts (visual arts provider in the city centre) • Received £29,311 in 2011/12 • Will not receive any funds this year Lovebytes Ltd (combined arts provider) • Received £37,077 in 2011/12 • Will not receive any funds this year

what you can do to help

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unding like this is crucial to keeping Musuems Sheffield alive, and to maintaining the important cultural work that they do in the city. The Musuems’ blog is quite clear about the fact that the UK’s fourth largest city should not have to fight for its cultural funding. But, they can’t make the case for culture in this city without the support of the people of Sheffield. They suggest that you could get in touch with the Arts Council directly, or that you write to your MP, highlighting the reasons that arts funding is necessary in Sheffield and ask them to protest to the Arts Council on your behalf. But, there are probably better ways of fighting the cuts, especially as most University of Sheffield students probably have Nick ‘I’m Sorry’ Clegg as their MP. Honestly, the one thing that all of these galleries need to keep them alive (more than letters to politicians who don’t care) is

people through their doors and visiting their exhibitions. While this might not seem like the most enticing way to spend your weekends, there are some wonderful exhibitions at the museums at the moment. The Magic Worlds exhibition at Weston Park Museum, which runs until January 3, is a fun exhibition which was given 7/10 in May. It covers Harry Potter, Narnia, and a lot of famous storybook worlds from your childhood. There’s a witch’s house to crawl through, and yes, you can dress up as the Mad Hatter, if that’s your kind of thing. With magicians performing from time to time, this exhibition could even work as a relaxing afternoon out for a society social. The Andy Warhol Late Self Portraits exhibition is still running at the Graves Gallery, too, and you can, of course always sneak in and stare jealously at the diamonds on Jarvis Cocker’s Damien Hirst painting. Spare a couple of hours and donate a couple of pounds to show your appreciation.

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Having spent the last issue talking about how wonderful the arts scene in Sheffield is, it was crushing to read about these cuts. While the government’s austerity drive at the moment is necessary to cutting the national deficit, it does seem to me that Churchill probably had a point: they’re getting rid of the things that make life worth living. As one commenter on the Museums Sheffield blog put it: “The arts are not indispensable. Without them, the world is a very colourless place”. Austerity Britain, it seems, really will be a sepia-tone photograph of its former colourful self. Imagining a world without the arts is probably near-impossible, but imagining Sheffield without them is becoming easier and easier. Looking in to the funding cuts in detail, a vicious cycle emerges: while the museums have their funding cut, they have to cut the number of exhibitions per year that they can hold. This reduces footfall in the museums, which means that funders won’t be so willing to help out, which means fewer exhibitions. And the cycle goes on. Of course, Sheffield is not the only place affected. The Arts Council England has had its funding cut by 30 per cent, meaning that 206 previously funded organisations, in-

cluding four from Sheffield, have lost out on their funding. By March 2013, as a consequence of cuts in Westminster, local authority arts funding will be down by 16 per cent on 2009, but this varies from region to region. Somerset County Council has cut 100 per cent of its arts provision. Let’s hope this day never comes in Sheffield. The picture is obviously not all doom and gloom. Several northern arts organisations did receive the funding they were after, including Site Gallery in Sheffield, Pilot Theatre in York, and Phoenix Dance in Leeds. The successes, however, are vastly outnumbered by the organisations who have suffered. While Museums Sheffield can hold out hope that they will receive more funding in future, and while Cocker’s donation may bring in more people, the over-arching facts remain the same. Museums Sheffield have had to shed vast numbers of staff because of Conservative cuts to funding, while under Labour over two million new jobs were created in the creative industries in 2007 alone.

everal Sheffield Arts organisations in Sheffield have been affected by Arts Council England funding cuts. While Museums Sheffield have tragically lost their bid for membership of the Arts Council’s National Portfolio, which would have brought in over £800,000 per year, they have also lost out on all of the Arts Council funding they have received in previous years. In 2011/12 they received over £68,000 of Arts Counil funding, and in 2010/11, more still. This year, they, like numerous other arts organisations in Sheffield, will receive no Arts Council funding at all. Other organisations in Sheffield which have been affected include:

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The Pulp frontman, born and raised in Sheffield, heard of the gallery’s plight and offered up the diamond-encrusted canvas (above) in the hopes that it would bring more visitors in to the gallery, and therefore more money. Graves, like much of Britain’s arts scene at the moment, is hanging on by a thread. Having just lost a bid to become part of the Arts Council England’s national portfolio, Museums Sheffield have lost out on over £800,000 of funding to help maintain Weston Park Museum, the Graves Gallery and the Millennium Galleries. Other funding applications have also been turned down recently, and the City Council has been forced to cut the amount of funding it offers. In total, this amounts to over £2 million of arts funding that Sheffield will now never see.

This probably all sounds very dry, complicated and inaccessible, but the fact is that it is happening, and it matters.

how the cuts have affected sheffield

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GAMES

Feature.EUROGAMER EXPO

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Gaming Royalty

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his weekend we had the absolute pleasure of attending the largest gaming convention in the UK, Eurogamer Expo. The convention impressively filled the floor of London’s Earls Court Exhibition Centre, with tons of upcoming releases, and thousands of keen gaming fans. From elaborate cosplayers to giddy children, the building quickly filled and extensive queues formed – but we managed to get our hands on some of the best games available to play on the floor. The convention provides a unique experience for fans to try out the games they’re counting down the days to release for, and gloat to all of their friends that they’ve checked it out before them. It’s also an amazing opportunity to find out about new games, new technology, and new experiences. A key feature of the Expo had to be the Nintendo area, boasting their newest hardware advances with the Wii U. This exciting new console is the first piece of technology from the next generation of gaming, with loads of cool features (although for quite a price!). We had a bit of a play with one, experiencing the ability to move the Wii U’s handheld pad around to explore a panoramic view – something that can be implemented to

realistically explore your in-game environment. Plus we got free Nintendo keyrings. The queues for the highly anticipated first person shooters of the year were swarming with hardcore gamers, forming unstoppable teams and leaving with ‘winner’ t-shirts. The 18+ Zone was a particularly exciting place to be, with games like Hitman: Absolution and Metal Gear Rising attracting impressive crowds of gamers. It’s also interesting to note that the best food areas were situated in the 18+ zone, who knew fish and chips and Pizza Express were for adults only? And we couldn’t help but feel sorry for the 14-year-old fans woefully trying to sneak a peek at the new Assassin’s Creed from the sternly guarded 18+ entrance. If you weren’t all that bothered about the newest big PlayStation 3 and Xbox 360 releases, there was plenty of entertainment going on elsewhere. The Cosplay area was a cool place to hang out, one minute we were joined in company by Colonel Sanders, then a Jedi, then, bizarrely, a dancing horse in a suit. There were plenty of squishy sofas around to chill out on, along with opportunity to play your mates at FIFA 13 or Pro Evo. And for those with a particularly competitive side, the Tournament Area provided a perfect op-

portunity to show off some gaming skills. We caught the Tekken Tournament, which grabbed quite a crowd as fighters button-bashed to the death, the whole area exploding in applause to every ‘K.O.’. One of the main spectator attractions was the Call of Duty competition arena where the most impressive players from the day were thrown together into small teams. Sat around a circular mission-control style table with inbuilt TVs and Xboxes, teams went head to head in games of ‘Domination’ and ‘Search and Destroy’. Onlookers could get a great view of the action with a large display screen switching between player’s views. This lead to generating a crowd of around 200 people applauding impressive kills and simultaneously groaning at every drop-shot attempt. It was a good way to get involved and check out the new Call of Duty, especially if you didn’t fancy the two hour queue for the multiplayer demo. One area that was a particularly nice addition to the weekend was the ‘Retro Area’. Cleverly designed with a timeline going from the 1980s through to the 2000s, this zone had all of the old school favourites. Where the big names were playable on shiny new state-of-the-art 37” LED TVs, the retro area put classic favourites where they belong, on fat little tellies with a back wider than the screen itself. It was

definitely adorable to see young kids, those who are spoiled with the shiny realistic graphics of today, checking out the very first of the Super Mario games. We headed to Eurogamer with an unrealistically small plan of which games we were interested in seeing, confident that we’d be able to see everything in good time. We found ourselves overwhelmed with the large selection on offer, and our original list seemed to have overlooked some great games. Leaving the Expo we could see our money quickly disappearing to many awesome titles in the coming months. Eurogamer was overall an amazing experience, which should definitely be on the bucket list of any games fan. Reece Nunn & Kaz Scattergood

For more of our photos from Eurogamer Expo - check out our gallery online at www.forgetoday.com

HIGHLIGHTS Back without Bungie. Halo 4 multiplayer has a noticeably new feel, but still very familiar. A new single-fire rifle is just one of the many new weapons added to the mix of Halo classics. Graphics are expectedly crisper than ever, with an online set-up similar to that in Reach. With enjoyable multiplayer and campaign promising to shed light on the Forerunners, Halo 4 clearly has plenty in store. Our free-for-all session got us very excited about this November title. RN

In the newest dose of the Call of Duty winning formula, veteran players will notice some key differences. Custom Classes are more flexible, allowing you to overpower your weapons at the expense of your perks and equipment or vice versa. We played in a close quarters shipping dock, and an open subway station, both were great. Despite initial scepticism, we left the multiplayer session very tempted to buy. RN


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e had a wander around the Indie Games section and found an unusual new game called Prison Architect. Prison Architect is a Bullfrog-inspired prison simulator, in which you literally build a prison and make sure all of the appropriate services within the prison operate successfully. Currently in the alpha stages of development, Prison Architect has a long way to go until the finished product. The game is partially a story

mode, and partially a sandbox simulation game. We had a chat with the developer, Mark Morris, who told us more. The game has come out of Introversion Software, which is one of the most successful independent game developer and publisher in the UK. Established since 2001, they have produced a number of successful titles, and this one promises to be another already. A paid alpha version of the game has been made available to the public,

allowing players to choose and purchase a certain tier of gameplay and try it out. Mark told me they expected “around 100” people to participate, and they already had over 2,500 by Sunday of the expo. This has made over $100,000 for Introversion. Their team is alarmingly small, with Mark and just one other guy, Chris Delay, along with a freelance helper or two, and their finance guy, Tom Arundel; (who was fittingly sporting a dollar-sign medallion). Mark said they were “very proud of where the game is right now”, particularly of the first chapter, which was said to be pretty much complete. Mark told us they had “really positive feedback” from the weekend, and hopes for the game to be completed and available in full in approximately one year’s time.

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We thought this Cosplay of Cammy from Street Fighter had to be our winner. She looks just like her!

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This Tomb Raider was taking her role very seriously. Plus her outfit was awesome.

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KFC was just around the corner from Earls Court, we think he might have been lost...

GAMES

Developer cashes in on Eurogamer TOP THREE COSPLAYS OF THE DAY success

Friday October 5 2012

After the last three instalments squeezing every last hay bale out of Ezio’s Italian quest, the story has finally evolved. Commanding a ship looked spectacular and new. Even when familiarly scaling a building to kill an unsuspecting guard, it seemed like a true sequel. If you were put off by recent repetitive games in the series, this looks like it could be the game to bring you round. RN

In our brief play of a pre-Beta demo, the game seemed way more realistic (Lara’s ridiculous boobs are no longer breaking her back) and she is struggling for survival. The previously unstoppable architect seems broken – physically and emotionally. Gameplay is almost alarmingly fluid; feeling like a cutscene throughout and the mechanics cleverly steer Lara in the right direction. This is definitely a key game to look out for. KS

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One of the biggest original releases of 2012, Dishonoured offers a very different first person experience, yet is still easy to adapt to. With a quickly accessed wheel of weaponry – your possibilities are vast, and each play through can be tackled differently. Powers such as pausing time or controlling the minds of your enemies allows you to implement interesting tactics in a variety of ways. A very cool game. KS

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MUSIC

Feature.THIS MANY BOYFRIENDS Coral Williamson chats to local indie-pop band This Many Boyfriends about playing festivals, working with Ryan Jarman and Meatspin.

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e’re sitting in the car park outside of Queens Social Club. This Many Boyfriends are enjoying some time together in the sunshine, and I have to interrupt them. This officially makes me the worst person ever. Actually, the band are very happy to talk. At great length. Lead singer Richard excitedly announces, “Let’s do some interviewing!” and we settle in for a nice chat. A chat that spans everything from Calippo ice lollies to Meatspin. Yes folks, this is This Many Boyfriends. A Leeds-based indie-pop band (just don’t call them twee) who describe themselves as playing “quite loud, fun, pop music. Lots of riffs.” They’re spot-on with their description, as anyone who saw them play the Bowery at Tramlines festival this year can attest. But yeah, don’t call them twee. Richard notes, “I don’t think twee is an actual thing, it’s not a musical genre is it?”

“The ones we think are the worst shows are always the ones people like”

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Friday October 5 2012

At this point, bassist Tom chimes in to add, “There’s too many connotations, like you’re going to be drinking tea and eating hobnobs.” At this point, the band are still drinking beer and eating burritos, so they’re hardly your stereotypical twee group. But that doesn’t matter; what matters is that they’re good. We talk about their set at Tramlines towards the end of our chat, and it seems that the audience might’ve enjoyed it more than they did. Drummer Laura tells me, “That gig, I had to go buy some new drumsticks an hour before we played, I found a drum shop, and walked up the road and within two minutes, someone had stolen them out my bag. So I had to buy some more drumsticks, and then they both broke during the set.”

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Richard continues the story by saying, “So it was a bit of a calamity set; I didn’t think we were that great but I guess it was the atmosphere more than anything. We have realised this now – the ones that we think are the worst shows are always the ones people like.” For a band who are only just releasing their debut album, they have a lot of wisdom about the highs and lows of making music for a living. Well, that’s the dream anyway; they haven’t quit their day jobs just yet. We chat about the fanzine they released, and Laura tells me it was her creation: “I wanted to make a fanzine, because I thought it would be cool. I wanted to make one anyway, unrelated to the band, and then the band was a good thing to make the fanzine about, rather than having to come up with my own ideas. “And I had a really shit job, where I got away with drawing the whole of the fanzine whilst at work.” It takes us a good few minutes to get to this point in the conversation, because when the topic of the fanzines first comes up, a car comes dangerously close to us. Richard’s shouts of “We’re gonna get run down! Move in everybody” gets everyone giggling, and we move to a safer spot in the car park. Back onto fanzines, Laura says she’d like there to be more issues. “I wanna draw a comic, but people have done that before. Art Brut have made a really awesome one. And try different things.” Richard adds, “It was really nice, from a selling records point of view, to have something different to give to people. I’d really hate to just buy a CD, because no-one wants that; if someone wants something they’re gonna listen to it on Spotify or download it. It’s nice to give them a physical piece of summat.” The band clearly love the idea of giving fans something extra, as Laura notes, “We’re hopefully going to have postcards to go with the album, which is pretty modern.” This point QR codes get brought up, and whether or not they were ever a good thing. And this devolves into what you can have on a QR code, until Laura decides, “Maybe that’s what we should do with the next release, get a virus.” It’s probably not something their fans would love, but the idea of a band giving you a code that redirects you to meatspin.com does sound hilarious.


“You don’t have real friends if you’ve never come to find your computer on Meatspin”

Richard adds, “Recording was quite quick as well, we did it over a couple of weekends. And it made us not agonise over it too much. We just did them live and did them basic. I didn’t want to spend ages trying to work out what a song should sound like, when it’s basically just the basics.” The band are full of praise for Cribs frontman Ryan Jarman, who produced the record. Richard notes, “We always say it was ‘well vibey’. He likes that word a lot. It’s what the kids say. He’s kinda like us really. He just wanted to mess about a bit, but then at the same time he understood what we sounded like, he got what we were about.” At this point, the conversation goes off on a massive citrus tangent. It starts off fine; Laura tells me that, “rather than him coming in and saying, ‘I’ve listened to your songs and this is what I want you to do’, what he wanted us to do was what we would’ve done anyway, to the level of our ability.” Richard adds, ““It was a really cool process, and Sebastian Lewsley, who engineered it, was really helpful. He’s kinda the unsung hero of the record,

because everyone’s going to say it was produced by Ryan Jarman.” It’s always nice to hear from bands who appreciate the behind-the-scenes work that helps make their albums sound ace. Laura jokes, “Ryan would be, ‘I want it to sound orange’! And he would just know what to do.” And then it all derails, as we start questioning what an orange sound would be like. “It would be quite fruity,” muses Richard. Tom adds, “Like a Solero!” “Can we try and make the musical equivalent of a Solero in our next album?” asks Richard, before turning to me and saying, “You’re really onto some embryonic stuff here.” It’s not really worth trying to get the interview back on track, because this is far more fun. Laura pipes up with a question: “What are the ones in the cardboard tube?” This causes a huge debate about the differences between Soleros, Calippos, and the triangular Sun Lollies – clearly the most pretentious of all ice pops. Richard notes, “That’s the pull quote!” and they all start discussing band names. The Pretentious Ice Pops “sounds like a support band”. Calippos, apparently, would be prog. After finding out that from guitarist Daniel that “in Australia, Calippos are called Splices”, and a quick detour into discussing the film of the same name, we manage to get back onto a This Many Boyfriends-related topic. This month sees them embark on their first headline tour – though they’ve been gigging for a few years now, and are pretty good at it. Richard says, “I’m very excited about our first headline tour, but I’m also quite scared, because people have to come for us. I’m used to having bands like Allo Darlin’ to bring people in. It’s good, because we have the album to play to people. It’s like a shit ATP thing where we say, ‘We’ll play the whole of the album!’ because that’s all we’ve got.” This Many Boyfriends play the Harley on October 14, and of course the bar’s excellent burgers get brought up. We only have 10 minutes before the first band is due on, so we wrap up our chat and head inside. It’s an excellent gig, put on by local promoters Pull Yourself Together; judging from the audience, This Many Boyfriends shouldn’t have anything to worry about when it comes to pulling in a crowd by themselves.

MUSIC

As Tom says, “You don’t have real friends if you’ve never come to find your computer on Meatspin.” It’s as if the band are your friends, despite the song ‘That’s What Diaries Are For’ from their upcoming album telling you, “This Many Boyfriends are not your friends”. We talk about their self-titled debut, and how it all came together. Laura tells me, “We never had the opportunity or want to make an album, so when it was like, ‘Oh why don’t you make an album’, then it just was all the songs we’d previously done, rather than, at any point in the last three years, recording those songs.”

Friday October 5 2012

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GAMES

Reviews. Borderlands 2 Xbox 360/PS3/PC 7/10

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he highly anticipated Borderlands 2 aims to offer even more than the first instalment of the franchise in terms of loot orientated shooter action. For the uninitiated the Borderlands series is an FPS which seeks innovation in hoping no one notices they’re just cribbing from another genre. The player accepts missions to kill a number of enemies from NPCs with floating yellow exclamation marks above their heads and hunting weapons and items from tough foes and in special chests. Essentially using all the staples of certain RPGs, Borderlands 2 is Diablo with an FPS twist. Playtime is spent less paying attention to the enthusiastically delivered plot dumps

Fifa 13

Xbox 360/PS3/PC 9/10 tudents rejoice! The most anticipated game of the year - until the next most anticipated game of the year - is here. Many hours may be wasted attempting to get a FIFA 13 apology from your mate so that your superiority is evident for all of Facebook to see. Playing that perfect pass. Placing the ball perfectly in the corner of the net. These are the things that FIFA is all about. In FIFA 13 however, there are several changes that will affect the way the game is played. The new ‘first touch’ system has added a degree of difficulty. No longer does Jay Spearing have the same first touch as Andrés Iniesta, and rightfully so. You now need to think before you play that 40 yard lofted throughball, is it a David Silva on the other end? Or are you trying to make the killer ball through to an Emile Heskey, on the 1 in 100 chance that he’ll get lucky and bring the ball down before a defender

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and more to the guns you will be inundated with. So what does the sequel do to add to this formula that worked surprisingly well the first time around? Not that much it seems. The original four classes have been replaced with a new set which is a breath of fresh air, the dual wielding tank Gunzerker for example is a far more entertaining class to play than the underpowered and boring Berserker was but Gearbox Software’s tweaking has introduced some issues. While it is nice that particular classes are no longer forced to use certain weapons, some of the more enjoyable elements of abusing the system have been lost for the sake of balance.

inevitably catches him? EA describe the new feature as “unpredictable but not random” and it really adds a new dimension to the game. More often than not the simple pass is what is required to maintain possession and look for a better opening, rathe r than risking it all on a Hollywood ball. While some may

grumble that it slows the game down, really it just adds a new layer of complexity increasing the challenge of playing sexy football. Alongside the first touch system the key changes revolve around improved attacking intelligence, complete dribbling and a refined physics engine. These, when combined, amount to a leap in both the quality and fluidity of football that you can play. Now

Abilities don’t quite like the powerful and awesome tools in the early game and much of the skills only seem to give negligible benefits. The maps and locales in game are now more expansive and varied. The introduction of a fog of war means missions which before entailed entering a previously barred generic cave or dungeon now you’re now exploring different parts of the same area. This has the positive of making you more aware of the effort Gearbox has put into level design and makes the setting seem like a real place. There is also a greater emphasis on the story, but without much work with in the first place, it’s difficult to care about this attempt. Though the references peppered throughout, from killing facsimiles of the Teenage Mutant Ninja when you get the ball you are able to use complete dribbling to square up to the defender, hold up the play and wait for your AI teammates to make improved runs into space before playing the pass. While the defenders use the refined physics engine which aids to balance the attacking improvements by utilising the refined ability to push, pull and generally outstrength their opponents far more effectively than in FIFA 12. Though more often than not this results in handing free kicks to the opponent and collecting yellow cards. Essentially the new and refined features increases the types of goals that you can score, no longer is the finesse shot into the corner when given any amount of space going to result in a goal nine out of ten times. Skill games are another

Turtles to stealing volleyballs from the cast of Top Gun, are good for the odd chuckle. The most crucial element of the game is, as it was in its predecessor, the co-op. When more players are introduced the enemies become more powerful, varied and interesting; rarer guns with more exotic effects appear and all of the various classes get to show what their abilities were really designed for. This is both the

biggest strength and weakness of the series. What is the point of being able to freeze an enemy in place if you’ve not got someone with the big guns to take advantage of it? Should you buy Borderlands 2 if you’re looking for a solid single player experience? Probably not, however it still provides one of the best coop experiences on the market.

welcome feature; they revolve around eight facets of the game: shooting, advanced shooting, dribbling, free kicks, penalties, ground pass, lob pass and crossing. Helping those less adept improve their ability with the bronze and silver challenges while the gold and skill challenge will help more advanced FIFA players hone their trade – even nudging some towards using manual controls for even greater control, or much less in my case.

an opinion, however, if you’re of the opinion that Pro Evo is better than FIFA, then you’re just wrong. FIFA 13 again builds on the solid foundations of last years release and, despite little graphical improvement, the addition of first touch unpredictability along with the refinements to the physics engine makes it the only choice for football fans.

“FIFA 13 is the only choice for football fans”

This review has not attempted to compare the game to its only real rival, Pro Evolution Soccer (Soccer, really?). I respect everyone’s right to have

Cult Corner. from dust

Xbox 360/PS3/PC

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hat would you do with the power of the gods? From Dust is a downloadable game released in 2011 that despite being well received, hasn’t had the attention it deserves. Set in a fictional world, From Dust tells the story of a tribe trying to follow ‘the path of the ancients’ and arrive in paradise. To do so they must overcome Mother Nature at her fiercest. You play as the arm of the gods, known only as the Breath, manipulating, sculpting and creating a landscape suitable for the tribe’s survival. The bulk of the game sees you tackle diverse and increasingly challenging battles with the elements, as the tribe follows the trail of totems left in each world. Pick up and drop sand to create dry land and foliage, move lava to create walls of rock, and use powers like ‘jellify water’ and ‘infinite earth’ to keep your tribe

safe. The difficulty curve of this game is extreme. The first few scenarios will stroke your ego and have you demanding all to bow beneath your ALMIGHTY POWER. The last few, however (in particular, the penultimate world), will have you in the foetal position, weeping, begging for mercy from the relentless forces of nature. However, completing the game therefore feels like a triumph, and you’ll even be rewarded a true sandbox version of the game where you have all powers, and your creativity is let loose. On top of the main campaign, there are 30 ‘challenges’ to conquer. These will test your creativity and quick thinking, and most will have you scratching your head raw trying to outsmart well-crafted, deep brainteasers.

Brendan Allitt

David Riley More reviews online Read more reviews online at: www.forgetoday.com

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Visually, From Dust is superb, especially for a downloadable release. The lava and water effects particularly impress and show that a lot of work has gone into the physics and overall presentation. This is not a perfect game. Not a lot is actually learned about the tribe, and you may be left feeling the ending is lacklustre and that you deserved a little more (even a 30 second cut scene would suffice). The controls can also be tricky, you’ll lose count of the amount of times you go to pick up some sand but can’t because you accidentally picked up a drop of water first, preventing you from picking up anything else. This can mess up your entire level if you’re at a critical point where timing is everything. From Dust is overall a success and will give you anything from -12 hours of play time, which is great value for money for a game around £10. It has great replay value as you always feel you could improve if given a second chance. Although it lacks any real story, you will find yourself becoming quite attached to the small worlds you create. Reece Nunn


CHICAGO

The Lyceum Theatre 8/10

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eaturing a repertoire of incredibly catchy songs, a gripping storyline and a chorus of male dancers wearing some of the tightest trousers ever to grace the stage, the Lyceum’s latest production of Chicago certainly (razzle) dazzles. Set in 1920s Chicago, an era where murder is regarded as ‘entertainment’, the story follows Roxie Hart (Chloe Ames), an aspiring dancer who winds up in jail for shooting her lover Fred Casely after he promises - and fails - to make her into a star. Despite being convicted however, Roxie’s passion for showbiz doesn’t end there. Whilst in prison she encounters fellow murderess Velma Kelly (Tupele Dorgu), who intends to make it big when she is released and thrive off her ‘celebrity murderer’ status. Velma’s plan subsequently inspires Roxie to steal her crooked but smoothtalking lawyer Billy Flynn (Ian Oswald), in a desperate attempt to escape death row and become famous herself. The story is therefore a satire on corruption in the world of

THE VILLAGE BIKE The Lyceum Theatre 8/10

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his award-winning play by writer Penelope Skinner is an enormously wellobserved insight into a woman’s relationship with her husband, her own body, and the rural society of the British countryside. The Village Bike follows the decisions of Becky, a young schoolteacher, after discovering she’s pregnant. It is a complex story about age, change, and

criminal justice, an idea which is captured in the show’s slapstick court scenes, which highlight this lack of professionalism in the legal system. Even the cast’s provocative costumes are black, in order to cleverly emphasise how the city is rife with shady deeds. Opening with a superb version of ‘All That Jazz’, the show went from strength to strength with regard to its musical numbers. Of particular note was ‘Cell Block Tango’, which was performed with gusto by the female cast members. Choreography was

also impressive here, with the murderesses genuinely appearing crazy as they jerked around on their chairs as though being restrained. Even the lighting was perfection, featuring a single stark bulb above each woman’s head, just as you would expect in a prison cell. Ames stepped in for Ali Bastian in this performance, taking on the role of Roxie, and despite being the understudy, Ames’ acting and dancing would be hard to top. Her interpretation of ‘We Both Reached For The Gun’, where Roxie is typically portrayed

as a ventriloquist puppet with Flynn pulling the strings, was particularly hilarious. However, her otherwise excellent performance was rather let down by her weak vocals, which gave the impression that she was consistently holding back. Nevertheless, this flaw in Ames’ performance only served to enhance Dorgu’s talent. Undeniably the star of this production, Dorgu utterly stole the show with both her powerful voice and energetic dancing. Bernie Nolan’s portrayal of Matron ‘Mama’ Morton was also

how a woman often discovers she values herself by her sexuality. Originally performed at the Royal Court Theatre in 2011, this is a fantastic and groundbreaking piece of writing which will undoubtedly become a classic of its time. Despite a great main performance by Amy Cudden, the central character of Becky is at times very unlikeable. I believe this is a conscious decision by Skinner, and that in this the message of the play is hidden. A lot of Becky’s decisions come from quite a selfish perspective, and the thing that is most striking about this play is the contrast

between the significant and the superficial. For example, there is a moment in which Becky’s husband, John, gets worked up about environmental issues, but this comes across as comic in contrast to the problems the two are having in their relationship. The idea of the bigger issues being made to be the superficial ones seems to underline Skinner’s overall message; that we define our own meanings, and our own importance to each other, through the things we decide to care about. Indeed, ‘care’ is a word that crops up throughout the play. Becky’s disbelief that her

husband cares about her leads her to make the decisions that she does, whereas John’s perception that all he does is care stops him from seeing Becky’s problems as anything more than hormones. The relationships are both true to life and performed brilliantly. The audience is taken into the characters’ worlds and we are made to see inside the complex workings of their souls. The lead character, Becky, is a modern day heroine who will be studied as a victim of her time and of her sex in years to come.

the strange case of dr. jekyll and mr. hyde

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Graves Gallery 7/10

Helen Monks

The Lantern Theatre 8/10

boat on hazy and calm waters, whilst ‘Storm off the East Coast’ shows the sea filled with violence and dark, foreboding tones. Finally, the third painting depicts a man-of-war on the restless Tagus River, signalling with red and blue flags. Each picture therefore shows the sea in different states from the 18th and 19th centuries, in stunning examples of Turner’s impressionistic style. As a result, the exhibition is a captivating insight into four artists who contributed greatly to Monro’s school. The painters focus on architecture with landscape and how different levels of detail or impressionism can transform a work, and as the exhibition is free and open until April, it is most definitely worth taking a look at. Camille Brouard

o be simultaneously enticed and repelled by a play is a rare experience, but Hull Truck Theatre’s production of The Strange Case of Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde achieves just this. Cleverly, the audience is made to feel sympathy for the plight of Dr Henry Jekyll and disturbed by the murders of his alter-ego Mr Edward Hyde. You cannot help but be drawn into this chilling stage adaptation of Robert Louis Stevenson’s gothic novella. At the Lantern Theatre in Nether Edge, the intimacy of the miniature auditorium highlights the beauty of small theatre; the strong connection between the audience and the actors, in this case emphasised by the tiny cast of three and effective use of narration, seems to have been of paramount importance to Nick Lane, the adapter and director. The play’s intimacy is exaggerated further by the enthralling performance of local actor James Weaver. His portrayal of both Dr Henry Jekyll and his evil alter ego Mr Edward Hyde is unsettlingly brilliant. Disturbing

transformations between his two characters are perhaps the most integral way in which he captures the main themes of desperation, unachievable ambition and split personality. Despite the cosiness of the auditorium, Weaver’s haunting portrayal of the mad doctor made the Lantern Theatre seem considerably less quaint. Of course, it can be argued that the good versus evil, split personality horror story has been done (characteristically) to death. Yet, Nick Lane manages to add a personal angle and evocative twist to the classic nightmare. Although having a talented director and lead are important, credit must also be given to the production team. Such remarkable production on such a small scale is extremely commendable. Everything from costume to the set, the sound and the lighting was expertly crafted, helping to ground the piece firmly in the 1800s. M Certainly, no production is perfect, and everything cannot always run smoothly - it is live, after all. But for this play, a slightly weaker performance from the supporting actress or a stuttering of lines only added to its slightly mismatched but engrossing nature.

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series of watercolours by 19th century artists JMW Turner, Thomas Girtin, Peter de Wint and John Sell Cotman can all be viewed in the Graves Gallery’s latest exhibition, Turner & The Monro Masters. These paintings come from the informal school of Dr. Thomas Monro, a physician, amateur watercolour artist and patron of the arts, who paid artists to make copies of his extensive watercolour collection. The works concentrate on nature, architecture and how the two interact with one another. In particular, there are fascinating studies of castles, such as ‘Conway Castle’ by Girtin and ‘Warwick Castle’ by de Wint, that show how ancient architecture changes with the effects of nature. These pieces also portray how viewpoint can emphasise structure; Turner employs this technique in ‘Weathercote Cave’ by depicting an entire waterfall as seen from a cave entrance. There are also three examples of Turner’s famous seascapes, all created with watercolour, chalk and bodycolour. ‘Seascape with Boat’ depicts a packet

Olivia Middleton

Friday October 5 2012

TURNER & THE MONRO MASTERS

a little disappointing. The role has previously been played by the likes of the powerhouse Queen Latifah, and Nolan was simply not domineering enough. Indeed, her rendition of ‘When You’re Good To Mama’ felt more like my own mother singing to me than the words of a toughened jail matron. Instead of owning the stage, Nolan’s performance was just uncomfortably static. The only other real fault with the production occurred right at the beginning of the show. The reasoning behind Roxie’s murder of Casely, which arguably sets up the entire storyline, was not made clear; it all happened much too suddenly, meaning that members of the audience who were unfamiliar to the plot may have been left baffled. Finally, kudos has to go to the incredible brass band, who brought a great atmosphere to the play and kept in tone with the story with their sexed up renditions of the soundtrack. Overall, in spite of some small imperfections, the show was immensely enjoyable. Forget about the criminal deeds of the characters - the only real crime would be missing out on seeing this fantastic production.

ARTS

Reviews.

Lizzie Hyland

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SCREEN

Reviews. Looper

Dir: Rian Johnson 9/10

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n the not too distant future, specialised hitmen called Loopers assassinate people sent from the slightly more distant future, but when a Looper named Joe (Joseph Gordon-Levitt) fails to kill his own future self (Bruce Willis) he is forced on the run from angry gangsters to prevent his older counterpart from altering the course of history for the worse. This is really an oversimplification of the film, as it features some of the most well thought through science fiction and clever storytelling

of recent years. The exposition of this potentially confusing concept is well dealt with, and the action kicks off almost immediately. There is a trade-off, as the film slows down for half an hour or so in the middle as the plot undergoes some essential development and Joe hangs out on a farm, but this pays off in bucket loads as the full potential of the film’s innovative premise is explored and it bursts to life again in the final act. One of the most exceptional things about Looper is the performance of Joseph GordonLevitt, who perfectly captures the mannerisms,

The campaign Dir: Jay Roach 6/10

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“Fans of Ferrell shouldn’t expect anything new” As a result, two ultra-wealthy CEOs plot to put up a rival candidate in order to gain influence over their North Carolina district. Their man is Marty Huggins (Zach Galifianakis), director of the local Tourism Centre. Marty, with his pugs Poundcake and Muffins, seems like the unlikeliest of candidates, but with the help of his cut throat campaign manager, Tim Wattley (Dylan McDermott), he is soon turned into the Republican the American people want and the race becomes a close competition. The Campaign is a political satire, but not a subtle one. Marty is forced

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ith the Obama-Romney presidential race hotting up one must ask, where’s the political satire to accompany it? Do not look to The Campaign for the answer. Will Ferrell plays Cam Brady, a loathsome Congressman running for reelection. Brady is a crass, womanizing Democrat whose polling numbers take a severe hit when he leaves a rude, drunken message on the answering machine of a devout Christian family.

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facial expressions and voice of screen icon Bruce Willis as if he was auditioning for a Die Hard prequel, making the film instantly easy to buy into. He also masters Willis’s ability to create sympathy for conflicted characters as well as appearing simultaneously downtrodden and physically threatening. Along with his appearance in The Dark Knight Rises, GordonLevitt has secured his place as one of the most reliable leading men in Hollywood. While many of Looper’s science fiction themes have been addressed elsewhere, never before have they been brought together in such a neat and gripping package. The future that has been created is a kind of dystopian, almost lawless cesspool

to swap his pugs for retrievers and his pictures for taxidermy, and it seems as if we’ve seen Cam Brady somewhere before - possibly in a certain George W. Bush. The race for Congressman turns into something of a farce, but then again isn’t this often true of politics? Laugh out loud moments come thick and fast but, despite flashes of intelligent satire, the majority of them rely on shock tactics. Fans of Will Ferrell should not expect anything new. It wouldn’t be a surprise if Cam Brady turned out to be Ron Burgundy’s long lost brother. It leaves you wondering how many times we can see Ferrell playing the same character (which is a shame as he is currently taking up his position as San Diego’s favorite newscaster again). The hilarious moments within the film very rarely come from Ferrell. For the most part they are provided by Galifianakis with his ignorant, naïve and very camp Marty. Despite his affability and charisma, Brady becomes something of an irritation. Director Jay Roach has provided us with a film that is emblematic of a US comedy scene which seems to be taking over the world (or less dramatically our cinema screens). It’s hard to imagine how many more versions of the same gag can be produced and it is, unsurprisingly, predictable. If profound and classy political satire is what you are looking for then this not the film for you. Sophisticated it is not, but bold and brash it most definitely is, and provides laugh out loud moments to keep you entertained. Lizzie Tolson

reflecting the decline of the USA and the movement of power eastwards.

“Like the Terminator updated for the 21st century” The attention to detail is high, and the potentially confusing time travel plot device is handled well without being over explained, w i t h

Barbara

Dir: Christian Petzold 8/10

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his year’s Academy Awards will see Germany put forward Barbara as their contender for ‘Best Foreign Language Film’. Set in 1980s East Germany, the story focuses on the eponymous Barbara (Nina Hoss) a doctor from Berlin who is banished to a secluded, rural hospital by the coast. Distant with her colleagues and mistrusted by the locals, Barbara soon plans her next attempt to flee to West Germany. However, as the months pass by, she is drawn to the charismatic chief physician, André Reiser (Ronald Zehrfeld) and a teenage runaway called Stella (Jasna Fritzi Bauer). Director Christian Petzold paints a frightening picture of the German Democratic Republic. Unlike other German films, which either sympathise with the regime’s socialist intentions or cast the authorities as outright villains, Petzold lets the audience see what it wants to see. The brutality is certainly realised, especially in the scenes with the local Stasi official (Rainer Bock) in which Barbara’s apartment and even Barbara herself are repeatedly and invasively examined. Though Petzold could have easily alienated the audience with this

plot holes kept to a minimum. In many ways Looper feels like the Terminator franchise updated for the 21st century, with mobsters in place of machines. It can proudly take its place in the pantheon of superb recent science fiction films, such as Source Code, District 9 and Inception, that refuse to simplify themselves to chase the broadest possible audience, and aren’t afraid to make you think. Thoughtful, action-packed, occasionally shocking and consistently engaging, Looper looks set to become one of this year’s most memorable films. Alex Chafey

approach, he successfully brings the viewer closer. As a love story, Barbara manages to be both sophisticated and understated. While other directors might have sacrificed the romance in order to concentrate on the political drama, Petzold makes no such mistake. A later scene between the two doctors is the zenith of the film. Both awkward and sweet, it’s a light moment that pays off beautifully in an overwhelmingly hostile film. Without a doubt, Nina Hoss’ enigmatic performance is at the heart of the film. Without much dialogue or exposition, most of Barbara’s characterisation is left to Hoss to divulge with her facial expressions. As the film draws to a close, the audience doesn’t feel they know much more about her than they did at the beginning. Ronald Zehrfeld is equally impressive as André. He is clearly the everyman, observing Barbara as much as the audience, and Zehrfeld is a joyous presence on screen and brings a much needed warmth to the film. Considering Petzold’s ability to create a cold, hostile atmosphere for the rest of the film, the finale falls a bit flat. But without a doubt, Barbara is an accomplished film which handles both its politics and its storytelling with maturity and intelligence. Joanne Butcher


mo pans and fast paced, action packed, over-the-top gore, skin tight jumpsuits and kick-ass fight choreography. The special effects are actually pretty spectacular (3D is to be recommended for once), and the camera angles are edgy and impactful, which works especially well in the jumpy scare scenes. Just be careful not to spill your popcorn. The story itself is very heavy on continuity, almost demanding that you’ve seen the prior films in the series. Otherwise the somewhat hyperactive plot may leave you a little bit confounded, and wondering why you wasted nearly 100 minutes when you could have watched The Dark

Knight Rises again. Overall this film does have its positive qualities, as long as you are willing to suspend your disbelief and just enjoy the things exploding around you. Resident Evil as a whole has still not jumped ship just yet, and this film proves there is still some life left in this franchise.

nigh on impossible to find fault with this film, and it deserves all of the attention it gets. The plot is based on the unusual friendship between wealthy quadriplegic Philippe, and a not so wealthy young Senegalese man called Driss, who lives in the notorious outskirts of Paris. However, unlike some contemporary French films such as La Haine that preach about the dangers of discrimination, a moral lesson does not appear to be the aim of this unlikely friendship. The thing that initially brings the characters together is the fact that Driss (Omar Sy) needs Philippe’s (Francois Cluzet) signature to claim Jobseeker’s

Allowance. His flippancy with regards to work and his easy-going personality are enough to clash with the more introvert Philippe and from this point onwards, a rather captivating relationship is formed. ‘Pragmatic’ is a common word in the film, and if there is any real lesson to be taken from it, it’s linked to this key idea. Despite the differences between the characters, in terms of both race and wealth, neither character pities the other: they simply get on with things. To say that this film’s plot is entirely true to the real-life story it tells would be a huge overstatement. It has been

criticised already, both for its simplicity and the fact the whole basis for the movie is rather clichéd. Nevertheless, the fact that it aims not to depict in great detail the story behind

the film, but simply to share with us that story and amuse audiences, means that it goes above and beyond the directors’ expectations. This film works brilliantly both as a drama and a comedy, and is one of the few features capable of provoking so much genuine laughter this year. Untouchable is well worth a watch.

I Untouchable

Dir: Olivier Nakache & Eric Tolenado

9/10

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he latest French film to hit Sheffield’s screens at the Showroom, Untouchable, is - as our cousins over the Channel would put it - magnifique. The fact that it has already been acknowledged as a work of genius by everyone but Roger Ebert means that Untouchable requires no real introduction: its global esteem comes in the form of Césars (the French answer to the Oscars) and acclaim from the Wall Street Journal. Furthermore, no matter how hard you try, it’s

In Bruges 2008

T Tuesday, 9:00pm BBC One

T

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here’s a joke which pretty much sums up the 2008 black comedy In Bruges: “what’s Belgium famous for? Chocolates and child abuse, and they only invented the chocolates to get to the kids.” Following Ray (Colin Farrell) and his fellow hitman friend Ken (Brendan Gleeson) laying low in the scenic Belgium city after a job gone wrong, it’s irreverent, clever, funny, and entirely un-PC. Farrell and Gleeson are both on top form as the loudmouthed, wilfully ignorant Irish fish-out-of-water duo, with their very genuine friendship providing the film’s emotional core. As Ken takes pleasure seeing the sights, Ray acts like a petulant child whose favourite word is ‘shite’ and the classic odd couple dynamic – the cynic who’s seen it all and the trigger happy newbie – is great fun. Meanwhile Ralph Fiennes manages to be both hilarious and menacing as their swearhappy employer (with the word

‘fuck’ apparently used 126 times over the course of the movie). For such a little-seen film, it’s packed full of memorable lines and great moments, and when the haunting reveal of what exactly went wrong on Ray’s last hit arrives, it will stay with you for long after the film finishes. That’s what makes In Bruges a cut above so many other similar gangster comedy films: amidst all the midget references, drugs, violence and jokes about fat retarded girls on see-saws, it has real heart. Playwright turned director Martin McDonagh has a great eye for the little moments and his follow up this October, Seven Psychopaths, is definitely one to watch out for. And, if you’re looking for a double bill, pop in The Guard, directed by McDonagh’s brother John. It’s another fairly unknown crime-based comedy with a twisted sense of humour, starring Gleeson as a racist small-town cop with more interest in taking drugs than stopping dealers. Ellie Jurczak

Fuse. Fuse.

here has been something of a revival in British costume drama over the past two years. Since the first broadcast of ITV’s Downton Abbey on September 26 2010, the public has gone mad for the genre, both at home and abroad. To date, Downton has been far and away the most successful; broadcast in over 100 countries, nominated for dozens of awards and the most watched series on both ITV and PBS, its popularity will certainly be difficult to topple. Yet the BBC has a proud history of costume drama itself, and isn’t one to give up without a fight. August saw the release of Parade’s End, whose casting of Benedict Cumberbatch in the lead role shows just how seriously

polished than its seasoned rival. The script is better written, the set more enchanting, the music more thrilling and the quality of acting (whilst never touching the inimitable Dame Maggie Smith) is arguably of a generally higher standard. The show feels on the whole more elegant than the sometimes clunky plot lines and predictable performances of Downton Abbey. It is, of course, too early to praise Paradise too highly, and it is not without flaws; the first episode lacked the humour that warms audiences to the Downton cast. Yet, at a time when period drama rules the roost, Paradise looks to be a worthy adversary to the Downton Abbey giant. ITV beware. CJ Leffler

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Friday October 2012 7 2011 Friday 5October

PARADISE

the BBC takes this market share. The first episode captured 3.5 million viewers, making it BBC2’s most watched drama in seven years. Last Tuesday saw the release of the BBC’s latest contender: Paradise. A reinterpretation of Emile Zola’s classic novel Au Bonheur des Femmes, the series is set in an up-andcoming department store in the Victorian Era, the golden age of lavish consumerism. Following the protagonist Denise Lovett (played by Joanna Vanderham), the first episode gives us a peek into the lives of those working at the Paradise, from the dashing capitalist John Moray to the severe Miss Audrey, as well as into the exciting mysteries of the Paradise’s dark secrets. The cast promises to be varied, and the plot full of those essential elements of any good series; drama, intrigue and scandal. So how does it compare to the current top dog? In many ways the newcomer seems more

Jade Gradwell

Ben Brunton

Cult Corner.

Small Screen.

SCREEN

n 1996 CAPCOM released a little known game on the PlayStation entitled Resident Evil, and in the 16 years since (way to make us feel old) we’ve been exposed to awkward voice acting, dogs jumping through windows and men with sunglasses. Many potential Jill sandwiches later, we are inexplicably at the fifth film adaptation helmed by Paul WS Anderson, husband of the franchise’s poster girl Milla Jovovich - which may explain the questionable costume design choices.

Speaking of questionable design, depsite their apparent destruction 10 years ago, the Umbrella Corporation are apparently still standing, and have relocated to an underwater base in the Arctic. Anyone wishing to see something zombie-related that is thoughtful and sympathetic to its characters, as well as deliciously scary, would be better suited to The Walking Dead. However, this film is to be taken with a pinch of popcorn, and does not pretend to be anything more than a good-looking action movie. There’s no rhyme or reason other than to allow the plot even more cinematic leeway for 96 minutes of countless slo-

REsident Evil : Retribution Dir: Paul W S Anderson 7/10

13


MUSIC

Reviews. RELEASES DOG IS DEAD

All Our Favourite Stories Atlantic Records 7/10

D

og Is Dead’s previous releases such as ‘Glockenspiel Song’ on the Your Childhood EP feature a steady indie-pop style which incorporates aspects of other genres like jazz and choir. This eclectic style is continued in All Our Favourite Stories. Having an expanding following and a track record of excellent live reviews, this album has a lot to live up to and it doesn’t disappoint. While Dog Is Dead have clearly pieced All Our Favourite Stories together very well, it has to be said that putting ‘Two

Devils’ and ‘Glockenspiel Song’ on the album comparatively sets their newer songs back a notch or two. This is only because those songs have already received a lot of praise, so they are hard to compete with. The success of these songs before the album has even been released illustrates this. Despite this, the new songs do still manage to impress. The album has a consistent, bouncy bass-line which produces an upbeat, summery atmosphere which is fairly typical of the indie-pop genre. What separates Dog Is Dead from a lot of other bands is the incorporation of a range of instruments, such as saxophones and keyboards, to give the music the occasional jazzy and even

choir-like feel. It is this much needed breaking of the indie-pop mould that gives the album its identity. For example, ‘Do The Right Thing’ features very Strokes-like guitar riffs, ‘Teenage Daughter’ features extensive use of singing in harmony, resulting a choir-like sound, then the use of the saxophone in ‘Glockenspiel Song’ creates said jazzy feel. They manage to give the album this diverse feel while ensuring that the songs flow into and out of one another seamlessly. All Our Favourite Stories is pretty good, and Dog Is Dead’s talent and progressive style are very evident in their first album. Jack Crisfield

Now Playing

This many boyfriends

This Many Boyfriends Angular Records 5/10

Y

orkshire’s own This Many Boyfriends are enjoying a moment in the sun of late. Recently afforded the ultimate London hipsters’ accolade of playing at a Vice Magazine issue launch, the Leeds five-piece are going from strength to strength. Their self-titled debut album, produced by Cribs front man Ryan Jarman is quintessentially indie-pop. All the required elements are there, including shouted choruses, jangly, lo-fi guitars and a song about another indie band (in this case Scottish melody-makers, The Pastels). The cover also features a lovely painting of a vintage

record player. Despite this not being my absolute favourite genre, more due to boredom and market saturation than genuine dislike, the album is quite an enjoyable listen. Single ‘(I Should Be a) Communist’, recently released on 7” is a lively teenage romp, bearing a slight resemblance to the Smiths’ more upbeat moments. It also features some excellent guitarsoloing that wouldn’t be out of place on an actual rock record. Opening track ‘Tina Weymouth’ is heavier and fuzzier, while ‘Young Lovers Go Pop!’ – utilising the exclamation mark as another indie pop staple – continues in the same vein, with the addition of a very catchy chorus. ‘That’s What Diaries are For’ features more excellent rock guitar without overuse of the effects pedal. Singer Richard Brooke’s vocal style varies widely throughout

the album. On some tracks he seems to sing in a heavy American accent, while other tracks feature a noticeable, fairly decent Morrissey impression. The lyrics typically stick to key indiepop themes – love affairs, poetry and not fitting in as an awkward teenager. In other words, they are sweet and inoffensive. Not much happens in a few of the tracks, such as final song on the album ‘Everything’ which is easily skipped over. And ‘Tina Weymouth’ contained a little bit too much indie-pop shouting for my liking – after a while it can get slightly headache-inducing. However, This Many Boyfriends is well worth a listen. If you’re a fan of indie-pop, you will probably really enjoy it, and even if you’re not you still probably won’t hate it. Lizzie Palmer

W

ith the abundance of new releases each week it can difficult to sift through the shit in search of the gold, so Fuse has handpicked some of the musical highlights for you. Splashh are back with a new single out November 5 called ‘Vacation’ and yet again these Aussie boys fail to disappoint. We love their hazy-pop sound and this track also introduces a slightly darker style. The repetitve lyrics “I wanna go where nobody knows” are insanely infectious. You can catch them supporting Spector at the Leadmill later this month. A brand new single from experimental four-piece Animal Collective has captured our attention this week. The track ‘Applesauce’ has a slow-paced, fuzzy melody but mixes this up a bit with frantic, fast vocals. The track is available for digital download November 12. We are really liking the new

Walk the moon

Fuse.

Friday October 5 2012

Walk The Moon RCA Records 6/10

14

B

ack in November 2010 Ohio natives Walk The Moon made ripples on the indie rock scene with their independently released debut album I want! I want!; lead single ‘Anna Sun’ was named Song of the Summer 2011 by Esquire, MTV and Seventeen magazine and featured on cult TV show Vampire Diaries, that’s quite an achievement for a band who, after a series of member changes, only settled on their current lineup in early 2010. Fast forward to 2012 and their major label debut comes this October, with their self-titled album Walk the Moon released on RCA records. This includes some new tracks but many are re-recordings of the old favourites found on I want! I want!. These earlier songs were mostly written by lead vocalist and band founder Nicholas Petricca whilst still in college and that youth shines through. In interviews, Petricca has said that he wanted tracks on Walk

album Total Loss from How To Dress Well and his new single ‘& It Was You’ is a definite highlight. The vocals are absolutely stunning and his style is such a refreshing take on R&B. Previous singles have had a more somber and melancholy feel but this track is full of life. Swim Deep are another band who’ve been on our radar a lot recently. Their first single ‘Honey’ is out November 5 and sounds like it is from a different era. A sound reminiscent of early Smashing Pumpkins mixed with the synth pop 80s sound of Duran Duran. It sounds weird, but we promise you it works. Finally we bring you a punk rock cover of Carly Rae Jepson ‘Call Me Maybe’ by Upon This Drawing. You have to listen to it to believe it and you can download it for free from punkgoes. com. LW & AH

Follow us on Twitter @ForgePressMusic the Moon to capture the energy that the band put into their stage shows and they have that nailed. Opening with the synthesised alarm that characterises ‘Quesadilla’ the pace doesn’t let up for eight relentlessly driven tracks culminating in ‘Iscariot’, ‘Fixin’’ and ‘I Can Lift a Car’, that lose some of the get up and go of the previous songs without sacrificing any of the brilliance. This is an irresistibly infectious album, full of great riffs and catchy choruses that had me singing along on the first listen through, lyrically and technically great it is the kind of album you want to put on max volume and dance around to first thing in the morning. The synthesisers and disco beats compliment the rock ’n’ roll style rather than compete with it and the influences of band like the Killers, who do that crossover so well, are obvious. Any fans of Vampire Weekend and Foster the People should definitely give Walk the Moon a listen and if you fancy seeing them live they will be supporting indie pop trio Fun on their UK tour this October. Sarah Hill


Stevie Neale The Leadmill

Friday September 28

A

s a general rule of thumb, a good indicator of whether or not a gig has gone well is whether the artist held their audience; at the Bowery it’s whether they ever managed to draw an audience at all. By those standards Stevie Neale cannot be disappointed. As she took to the Bowery stage at around 9.30pm it was painfully obvious that, out of the usual crowd of Friday night drinkers, there was only around a dozen of people there to see her perform. By the end of her 30 minute set however, she had almost tripled that, no mean feat when you’re competing with cheap deals on vodka. There are some early technical

Stevie Neale: Susan Hildebrandt

problems and for the first couple of songs Stevie’s voice is almost completely lost, which is disappointing but not disastrous; her backing band are in fact more than capable of carrying those first few tracks. Even when Stevie’s mic is turned up they aren’t totally overshadowed and the backing vocals from the keyboardist really add depth in the choruses. However there can be no arguing that Stevie is the real star of the show. She has a beautiful, powerful voice that has something slightly vintage about it, imagine Paloma Faith with synthesisers. The fact that she self produces all her songs makes them all the more personal and that really comes across in her performance. With meaningful lyrics and beats that have something 80s about them she manages to walk the thin line between irresistibly catchy and a little bit cliché.

Reviews. Stevie may only be playing to a small audience and competing against drunken chattering and clinking glasses, but, if anything, she seems to thrive on the intimacy of the gig. She has a natural stage presence and dances along to every song; never taking herself too seriously and never losing her smile. Stevie has come a long way since playing Cornish pubs to disinterested locals back at the start of 2011. She played the Introducing Stage at the BBC Hackney weekend earlier this year and by the looks of her show tonight, she is on her way to even bigger things. Catch her on the way up.

MUSIC

LIVE

Sarah Hill

Misha B: HYPDUP/ Flickr

Most Wanted: Devlin & mISHA b O2 Academy

Wednesday September 26

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Hanna Davis

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Devlin: Partyhounds/Flickr

The Fratellis The Leadmill

Sunday September 23

T

he Fratellis made an impressive comeback at Leadmill on Sunday at the first of five UK dates scheduled for this year. Having previously supported the likes of Kasabian and the Police as well as playing at festivals such as Glastonbury, the indierock band are best-known for their catchy choruses in hits such as ‘Chelsea Dagger’, ‘Creepin’ up the Backstairs’, and ‘Flathead’. With two albums to date, they shook up the indie scene in 2006 with their best-selling album, Costello Music, later picking up a BRIT award for Best British Breakthrough act in 2007. Despite their absence from the music scene since 2008, the Scottish trio made up of Jon, Barry and Mince were certainly not strangers to the live stage, and entertained Leadmill’s rowdy crowd from start to finish. As the gig starts, the packed venue made it clear that this show has been long-awaited by fans. Some are slightly older than expected, but nonetheless, seem to share the same enthusiasm and reflect the wider appeal of the band.

Throughout the gig, the audience are treated to the best of an impressive back catalogue of songs, kicking off with ‘Henrietta’. Arguably, the setlist leant heavily towards their first album and songs from the band’s 2008 album, Here We Stand, fail to excite the crowd in the same way. Nevertheless, their sound remains distinctive and they did by no means disappoint. Predictably saving the best until last, Chelsea Dagger was the first of two songs during the encore, which is by a song from their 2008 album, ‘A Heady Tale’, which gives off more of a piano-pop vibe. Unfortunately, the encore is disrupted by a mammoth fight, resulting in one man pinned up against the wall by his throat. Still, it adds to the entertainment value. Overall, the band exceeds expectations. Their energetic performance mean they do live up to their highly anticipated comeback in which is hopefully not one of their last UK shows.

Fuse.

The Fratellis: radio1interactive/Flickr

His rhymes seem effortless and it seems that he is here with only one goal in mind: to entertain. There is no fault that can be said about his fierce performance, although his songs do appear to merge into one. Devlin has not digressed from grime to the commercial pop influenced child rap that most successful grime artists have done to make sales. But with a small yet loyal following and a great stage presence, all Devlin lacks is just one undeniable tune to put him ahead of the game. He is however, capable of being there.

Friday October 5 2012

ollowing on from last week’s success with Professor Green, Sheffield’s O2 Academy have introduced up and coming grime artist Devlin and ex-X-Factor contestant Misha B to the ‘Most Wanted’ stage. It’s a shame to say that the turn-out does not reach the half mark at all. Considering the doors open at 10:30pm, the acts do not appear on stage until 12:45am, but with a great DJ set beforehand, the small number of revellers do seem to be enjoying themselves. A disappointing crowd barely fills a third of the dance floor when Misha B finally reaches the stage. A pint-sized pop star, she seems upbeat and ready to go but the crowd can’t help but wonder whether the smile on her face is false.

The majority of people here turn out to be Devlin fans, but this doesn’t seem to deter the XFactor starlet. She owns the stage; there is no doubt that she has an incredible voice and charismatic presence. But there is something missing. Misha B seems to be tip toeing on that very thin line that separates arrogance from confidence. Her undeniable talent does mean that she does have the right to be a diva, but with only one top 10 single under her belt, Misha B has not yet earned the status. Finishing her very short set with her most recognisable song ‘Home Run’, it seems as though Misha B’s stint on X-Factor was her peak and now she is on an unfortunate downfall, but there is fire within her yet. Then comes Devlin, greeted by a very excited crowd and he starts with an unfamiliar but very catchy opening track. With everyone taking pictures, and nodding their heads seamlessly, Devlin has the small crowd in the palm of his hands.

Emma Gibbins

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