PURE M MAGAZINE
Maverick Sabre The Art Crimes Katherine Stansfield Mongrel State August Wells Ticking Tree Davie Furey Colin Devlin Mark Dean Portrait Plus much more...
Frank Carter Exclusive Interview
Allow me to be Frank... Interviev with Frank Carter by Jonathan Monahan
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Pure M Issue 16 staff
Pure M magazine
Managing Editor - Jonathan Monahan Culture Editor- James Dunne Music Reviews Editor - Sarah Swinburne Movies Editor - Shane O’Reilly Gigs Editor - Will White Games Editor - Jenny Murphy Byrne
P22 Interview : Bartle D’Arcy
Dave Simpson Shane Brothwood David Gerrard Foley Joe Homan James Glynn Tomas Swinburne Hodei Lacey Shana Beth Mason Emma Fagan Jade Louise Aoife Kiernan Niamh Dumphy Oscar O’Connor Paul Ryan Ciaran Curran Damien Mc Evoy Aisling Murphy Rachel Casey Barry Kearney Rose Flood
Editor & production T.Halpin - email@example.com Twitter@puremzine Facebook/puremofficial www.puremzine.com
Maverick Sabre Q&A
P28 Munich 1958
About the author: Katherine Stansfield
P18 The Art Crimes
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Mongrel State: Mestizo
rish alternative ensemble Mongrel State have taken traits of Americana, rock and roots and thrown them all together to create an exciting style that sets them apart from their peers. With a tour of their homeland taking place between now and April, the quartet are currently keeping busy between living it up live and promoting their recently released record, Mestizo. Bursting to life with the enlivening riffs of “Monster”, the album immediately absorbs as it sprints into spirited singing and exuberant instrumentation. Things remain riveting when the retro rock ‘n’ roll rhythm of “Ten Steps Ahead” takes over and is maintained by gripping guitars alongside vigorous vocals. “Stray Dogs” ups the energy even further afterwards as it rushes forward through mesmerising music that doesn’t relent for the entirety of its thrilling two and a half minutes. “How Many More” bears a bright attitude, staying sunny and enticing on the
f you ever wondered what kind of musical combination would come out of remote Whitehorse in Canada, and war stricken Kremenets, Ukraine, listen no further than Ummagma. Winners of Dreampop Album of the year, their new EP “Frequency” plinks and plops delightfully along.
way to the feisty riffs of “High Time”. A resolute refrain joins in for the verse, while the chorus is incredibly catchy. “Dirty Trick” erupts rousingly in its wake, keeping quick as it dances delightfully across funky verses and quirky choruses. “Quiero Volver” is a short and stirring interlude ahead of the vivacious vibe of “Desert Girl”. This vivifying addition is guaranteed to get the adrenaline going before “Zombies” decelerates to differentiate itself by being laid-back but bracing. “Rainy Days” is an unexpectedly affecting successor, soothing the senses with its soft sound as it brings things to a comforting conclusion. This is an exceptional debut endeavour by Mongrel State that doesn’t shoehorn itself into any one genre. Its heartfelt harmonies and elated instrumentation give rise to a consistently compelling compilation that caters to all kinds of inclinations. By Dave Simpson Upon first hearing it, it reminded me of soft 50s electronica. Fabulous. I did tire a little of the wispy female vocals but it was worth staying put and listening to the whole way through. Second track “Lama” is absolutely stunning, and transcends into an amazing original pop track at its peak. “Galacticon” also stands out, a sweeping, post-apocalyptic instrumental. Surprisingly “Ocean Girl” is very short but sweet and contains male vocals, which I preferred. Ummagma is now receiving international acclaim in over fifty countries. Perhaps not surprisingly they are supporters of those other dreampop weavers Lights That Change. The weird but amazing “Frequency” is out on Moon Sounds Records, an American label. By Aoife Kiernan
rish artist Davie Furey has been enjoying a productive period over the last year or so. Following its release in March of 2015, his single “Good to Be Back Home” has been showcased by the BBC, RTE and a number of other stations both at home and abroad. He’s also had a lot of success on stage, including a jam-packed performance at Whelan’s in November for the official launch of his latest record, Easy Come, Easy Go. The eleven track album opens with the upbeat riffs of “The Sky’s Alive”, then dives into vocals that are full of vitality and vigour. There’s a forceful feel to the whole thing that makes it extremely enlivening. “Strong Wind Blowin’” is a lighter but no less enjoyable addition which uplifts with its merry music and sunny serenade. “Another Heart that Heals” stays sanguine in its wake, jogging joyfully over gleeful guitars amid a raw refrain. The sound of “Saved” is more sedate, but that doesn’t mean it’s lacking in energy or enthusiasm in any way. “Presidents and Ghosts” adopts a direr demeanour then, exuding an ominous ambience via intense instrumentation and severe singing. The title track goes back in a jovial direction when it’s done, keeping keen and captivating as it races along rousingly. “Freewheelin’” is a lot cooler than its predecessors, while “Take You Along In My Dreams” is another fast and fun affair which remains riveting all the way through. “Until the End of Time” is a heartfelt ballad next, ahead of the quick and catchy execution of “Mystic Road”. “Tara” takes over from here and evolves into a delicate endeavour that acts as an affecting ending. Furey has forged a cordial compilation that combines characteristics of acoustic rock and folk with traditional techniques which enthral throughout. Its innocuous style and tender tone are unlikely to incite any objections. By Dave Simpson
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I Believe in You
Nina Nesbitt 21 year old Scottish singer-songwriter Nina Nesbitt has had a number of successful years and is set to progress into further success this year. Like many others, Edinburgh, Scotland born Nesbitt began her career as a musician on Youtube. She wrote her own songs, recorded them and uploaded videos of herself onto the popular website. Nesbitt then met the popular singer-songwriter Ed Sheeran in 2011 and was invited to join him as his support act on his European tour, as well as appearing in the music video for Sheeran's single 'Drunk'. The musician has since gone on to support the popular hip-hop/rap duo Rizzle Kicks on tour, as well as musician Example on tour. Nina Nesbitt released her EP, 'The Apple Tree' in April 2012. 'The Apple Tree' reached number 6 in the UK iTunes download charts. The EP includes her debut single 'Boy', a track written in relation to a previous relationship which
turned to absolute turmoil. Nina has since released her 'Way In The World' EP in 2013, her 'Stay Out' EP in 2014 and her debut album, 'Peroxide', in 2014. 'Peroxide', a 13 track album containing her singles 'Selfies' and 'Stay Out', debuted at number one on the iTunes charts mere hours post-release. The album also featured the track 'Hold You, which featured the popular Irish group Kodaline. Nesbitt also recently released a new single by the name of 'Chewing Gum'. This was debuted on Spotify and iTunes on the 10th of January 2016. This is the first single off of her latest EP, 'Modern Love'. It is clear that Nina Nesbitt's career is only beginning and being the mere age of 21 opens Nesbitt up to several career opportunities. 'The Apple Tree EP', 'Stay Out EP', Peroxide and 'Modern Love EP' are now available for download on iTunes and for streaming on Spotify. By Jade Louise
twinkling, wonderfully distorted guitars? “Shoegaze” is the one word that popped up over and over again in their blurbs to the point of irritating and I feel that their best moment is when they actually looked up from their shoes for a second on current single “Mira”. Fans of Joy Division, The Church, Stone Roses and Talk Talk will enjoy this sweeping otherworldly rock. I am also an enjoyer of these bands and so enjoyed Stella Diana. The lads are going since 1998 and their current EP is “Alhena”, which also contains previous single “Shohet”. Stella Diana, me new favourite Italian band. Grazie, ragazzos. By Aoife Kiernan
tella Diana is your favourite new Italian band, apparently. I for one did not even realise they were singing in Italian until I read their description. Maybe that’s how good they are, that their music transcends across all linguistic boundaries. Or maybe I’m just an idiot. Who knew Italian could so sound even more beautiful when sung across
p and coming Dublin based musician Mark Dean has had a passion for writing and recording for quite a while now, but it’s only in recent weeks that he decided to share the fruits of his labour online. His songs centre on subjects such as love, loss and the human condition. This latest effort, entitled “I Believe in You”, is about offering encouragement and support to someone in need of it. Vivid vocals introduce the track and really resonate with their warmth and earnestness. At the same time, an affecting acoustic riff begins to drift delicately through the background, stirring up a lot of emotion by being both optimistic and affecting. The instrumentation goes on to grow gradually underneath the soothing singing, staying soft while establishing a reassuring rhythm. It’s all very vibrant as it reaches a captivating chorus, during which the melody becomes even more moving. The music increases in volume and velocity just past the minute mark, trotting tranquilly through another resounding refrain that sails serenely across the senses. The pace remains peaceful as a touching instrumental sequence strolls towards a hushed but heartfelt harmony in the third minute. This paves the way to a poignant peak that ends the endeavour as elegantly as it opened. For an artist who hasn’t released any solo material before, Mark Dean certainly sounds impressively professional. “I Believe in You” is an expertly executed pop/rock anthem that’s easily as accomplished as anything you’re likely to hear on the radio at the moment. This is a man who knows how to make meaningful music that feels like it matters. By Dave Simpson
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Interview by Niamh Dumphy
nglish born and Irish raised singersongwriter and rapper Maverick Sabre began his career in 2008 and has since then released two studio albums his debut platinum album “Lonely Are The Brave.” and his latest album “Innerstanding.” Throughout his career he has featured on songs with English rapper “Professor Green” and drum and bass duo “Chase and Status.” supported Irish band “The Script” on tour in 2011 and toured worldwide. I Interviewed Maverick Sabre ahead of his Bow St Sessions gig at the Old Jameson Distillery in Smithfield. The Bow St Sessions is a series of one off unique live performances and collaborations by Irish acts.
What was it like for you growing up in Ireland? As it is for any young lad growing up in a small town in Ireland. I moved over from London when I was 4. My family is Irish. I was raised in a small town called “New Ross” in county Wexford. My family is quite musical, it was a musical up bringing really. I moved to London when I was 17. The period I spent in Ireland was music and school that was my upbringing here.
Who was your biggest musical influence when you were young? My dad was my biggest influence, he was in bands when I was a kid, I’d go to see him play or he’d be playing in the house with my uncle or his friends. He would play Blues or Trad Irish music in the house all the time and my mum and dad were Soul, Jazz and Reggae fans. I was brought up on many different styles of music as well as the Irish traditional music from my dad.
I was recently at your gig at the Academy I noticed there was a really good
atmosphere. Do you think Irish crowds differ from crowds in other countries in terms of reaction? Yeah there was a great atmosphere down there it was one of the best, if not the best atmosphere we had on the last tour. Yeah I think they do, I think every countries got a definitive reaction and vibe when you go and play. We’ve got our own attitude when we go to gigs, I think it’s a great one. I love Irish crowds they are some of the best crowds in the world to play to. I find Irish crowds are quite free, if they’re going to see some music or to a festival, they’re going to out enjoy themselves. They don’t stand
there and think about people looking at them, they’re quite free. It’s always an enjoyable experience coming home and playing to an Irish crowd.
I noticed you tend to just to play intimate venues when you come here, do you prefer to you do that? Yeah I do quite like to do that. We’re actually hopefully going to come back in May to play some smaller intimate venues around the country for a UK and Ireland unplugged tour. yeah I do quite enjoy that actually. I like to be able to feel the energy when people come to shows and see what
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way different songs go down with people and see what lyrics people pick up on. I like to be able to feel the same energy as the crowd it helps me perform during the set as well. I think you get a special feeling from the intimate shows that you don’t get anywhere else.
What was it like when you moved to London when you where 17 to pursue your music career? It was daunting, I was young and I only had one bag, I didn’t really know what I was doing. I just knew I needed a new experience in my life. It made me into a
man to a certain extent and made me get focused very quickly. It was a real benefit for me, it made me grow up quite a lot.
Your latest album “Innerstanding” came out in late 2015. What were your musical influences when you were working this album? The musical influences came from many different places. I took two and half years out after the first album. But it wasn’t two and a half years of doing nothing., it was two and a half years of traveling, working on projects with other people and doing things around the world. There was a big
influence from South Africa when I was there for a short period of time. There was a big influence from Jamaica when I was there. I got into a lot more jazz, jazz was quite a big influence on this record as well, it varies, there was a lot going on in the last two and half years, I tried to soak up as much as I could and put it back into this album.
What can fans expect from you in 2016? A lot more music, I’m working on a folk album, a lot more projects and writing for other people, more touring and more shows.
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On New Year's Day
ith members whose previous work includes playing alongside the likes of One Direction, James Morrison and Take That, Ticking Tree are certainly no amateur ensemble, despite being fairly new on the scene. Their debut record, Underneath the Fairy Teeth, was put together at London’s Metropolis Studios late last year and features seventeen tracks for fans to feast upon. “Memories of a Fisherman” opens optimistically by flawlessly fusing elements of pop, rock and folk as it flies fervently forward. It serves as a sunny start before “Butterfly Wings” slows things down, while maintaining a merry mood. The bright ballad that ensues glides gracefully through enthralling singing and uplifting instrumentation. “When the Sun Goes Underground” heads in a more mellow direction, remaining warm and affecting on the way to the relaxing rhythm of “Borrowed Time”. The delicate delivery of this emotional effort keeps it captivating until the cheery tone of “Dancing All Day with Fred Astaire” takes over. The upbeat anthem that follows is eventually superseded by the quirky music and resolute refrain that make “Rules of the Game” gripping.
“Those Days Gone By” is a soothing song, made up of a merry melody and buoyant beat, while “1 in 1,000,001” is a loud and lively addition that feels fun. “Magical” starts serene again afterwards and stays soft and sincere all the way through. “Queen of Inbetweens” displays a happy humour in its wake via vivacious vocals and enthusiastic instrumentation. The resonant refrain of “For Me” leaves a lasting impression ahead of the colourful techniques that “Edge of Extremes” exhibits. “Love Attack” excites with its playful personality next, then “Every Heartache Disappears” absorbs by being tranquil and touching. “As Good As It Gets” paces pleasantly from here to “Paper Stars”, which acts as a poignant prelude to the moving music and melody that breathe life into “Breaking News”. This heartfelt affair brings it all to an effective finish. For an album that showcases so many songs, Underneath the Fairy Teeth is surprisingly successful in avoiding moments of mediocrity. At worst, what it has to offer is thoroughly enjoyable and at best, it’s brilliantly breathtaking. The overall result is an astounding inaugural undertaking, of which Ticking Tree should be proud. By Dave Simpson
os Angeles based artist Colin Devlin has been writing and performing material for more than two decades now. In that time he has accomplished a lot, having played in front of countless crowds, released albums which were acclaimed the world over and had his songs showcased in everything from Batman Forever to Six Feet Under. His latest endeavour, “On New Year’s Day”, was created in collaboration with Golden Globe nominated composer and long-time friend Brian Byrne. Recorded in just two days, it arrived online in December and also features the instrumental talents of the Bulgarian Symphony Orchestra. Poignant piano keys introduce the piece and conjure up a contemplative air ahead of the very vivid vocals of the verse. The music remains emotional and restrained as the refrain resounds wonderfully on the way forward. Subtle strings add emphasis to the affecting ambience, washing warmly across the senses. It’s all extremely enthralling, maintaining a mellow mood into the soft and stirring chorus. The serenade increases in intensity in the second minute, while the music continues to captivate. The harmony becomes especially hard-hitting around the midway mark, making a powerful impact before toning back down for another volley of vibrant vocals. Things begin to build beautifully again afterwards, culminating in an assortment of sublime singing, celestial strings and pleasant pianos. This is a truly touching undertaking by Devlin that manages to feel incredibly deep and meaningful in its simplicity. Its stripped-down style and honest attitude afford it an immense amount of accessibility, which should allow it to please plenty of people. By Dave Simpson
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Ellie Goulding - Delirium
nglish Pop Singer Ellie Goulding has released her third studio album “Delirium”. The intro (Delirium) makes it seems like the album is going to be really dark. It sort of reminded me of something you’d hear at the beginning of a “Lord Of The Rings” film. This album is far from dark. It is an upbeat take on pop. On the second track “Aftertaste” I loved the use of the drumbeat from the beginning, it made the whole song blend together really well. I also thought this about “Do What I Love”. On the third track “Something In The Way You Move” I liked the whole production of the song. The electro-pop beat works really well. I also felt this way about “Around U”, “Codes” and “Don’t Panic”. On “Keep On Dancin", I found the unusual beat very interesting. Synthesizers are used alongside stacked up whistles and handclaps to create an atmospheric pop beat, which works surprising well with Goulding vocal. On the leading single “On My Mind” I enjoyed everything about this track, in particular the electric guitar at the beginning, along with its catchy lyrics, it was one of my favorite single releases of 2015. On “Holding On For Life”, I loved the gospel intro and use of different types of percussion throughout the song along with the use of piano and synthesizers along with Ellie Goulding’s vocal and lyrics created a lively and energetic feel which made this song impossible for me to stop listening to. The ninth track is Goulding’s hit from the “Fifty Shades Of Grey” soundtrack “Love Me Like You Do”. This song was a huge success in 2015 for Ellie, and it gave her her first number one single in various countries including the UK and Ireland. For me this song brought out the ballad
side of her music that I enjoy. The production of this song shows off her vocal ability more and brings out the emotion in the song, I also thought this about “Army”, the latest single from the album. On “Don’t Need Nobody”, I thought the beat and vocal complemented each other really well, it made it easy to listen to lyrics of the song. I also felt this way about “We Can’t Move To This” and “Devotion” and “The Greatest”. On “Lost and Found”, I enjoyed the acoustic guitar intro and then how the song kicked into an up-tempo pop beat towards the middle. On “Scream It Out” I liked the use of piano in the song and how the beat was built around the tones in the vocal. On “Paradise” the lyrics and vocal stood out to
me more than the beat, however, the beat on the track was still really well done. I also felt this way about “Winner” and “Heal”. The final track on the album is “Outside”. DJ and producer Calvin Harris collaborated with Goulding on this dance track, its combination of well-written lyrics, produced beats and Ellie Goulding”s vocal made this song a huge hit for the pair in 2015. Overall I really enjoyed this album, I liked its many different elements of music, I reckon any song from the album could be a hit for Goulding, she created album her fan base would enjoy. I’d be really interested to see how well the album comes across on a live show. By Niamh Dumphy
Jack Conman “Heroin Strings”
ack Conman is not actually a con man per se, but a Yorkshire man. He’s described as having folk, soul, and classic rock influences and been lauded by the BBC and Radio 1 as the next singer-songwriter folk superstar. I was a bit shocked that an artist would go ahead
and give a song such a taboo title. I felt his vocal style was similar to Gary Lightbody’s of Snow Patrol, not a bad thing. However this genre of singer-songwriter seems to be becoming a caricature of itself, with one after the other, all pitching the same tone and wistfulness. But hold yer horses. I know Gary’s not a singer-songwriter, he’s in a band. Anyway, Conman does have something that sets him apart and it’s the percussive guitar which resonates the whole way through the track. It’s the only thing that I enjoyed. The title really bugged me, did he name it just to move attention away from that fact that the rest of the track is clichéd? “Heroin Strings”, much like heroin itself, doesn’t really bring you anywhere. As for Conman himself, he’s just back from somewhere, having completed a university tour of England. By Aoife Kiernan
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t's becoming increasingly difficult to classify new music into discreet genres, as musicians these days have a ready access to the back catalogs of pretty much everything ever recorded, and so musical influences are cross pollinating at an unprecedented rate, with the resulting sounds defying exact definition. It's a wonderful time to be a musician, creatively speaking at least, as there is an infinite pool of inspiration from which to draw. As generations of musicians inspire new ones, the old staple and stable categories into which we have grown used to placing our favorite bands, have gradually subdivided and subdivided, to the point now, where a band like Rollin' Empire, can't be said to be exactly metal, nor can they be said to be hard rock, because they are equally both at the same time. From the opening bars of the eponymous track of their debut album, Nowhere to Run, you don't need a metal detector to sense some of the influences here. The kick drum punctures a wall of snarling guitars, and when the chorus breaks, it's clear what's going on. The dirty riffs break into a crescendo of power chords, and the growling Hetfieldesque vocals of the verse, get the rich Black Keys second vocal octave treatment. It's a sound befitting of dive bars and roughneck pool halls, and treads a thin line between helicopter head banging, and bluesy raucous fun you can dance to. Picture a Heineken ad, and turn the amps up to 11. The guitar work on the album is simple but effective. A lot of contemporary hard rock and metal music is polluted with self indulgent and emotionally bankrupt shred solos from the Yngwie Malmsteen school of six string masturbation. By contrast, Rollin' Empire choose to sock you around the jaw with crunchy unapologetic riffs,
that are battered into your ears by the excellent drumming, and sometimes subtly underlain with synthy key motifs, that are reminiscent of Israeli electronica outfit, Infected Mushroom. It's an orgy of competing sounds, and there are strands of Metallica, Queens of the Stone Age, Black Sabbath, and Led Zeppelin all present, as well as the ostensible air of The Black Keys here too. The listener isn't given a break from the all the overdrive until the fifth track, Bones, but the reprieve is short lived. The clean guitar soon breaks again into a soaring chorus, and by this time the band's strength begins to show their weakness. The music is never dull, but it can't ever be said to be breaking entirely new ground either. It's not necessarily a bad thing to be a pastiche of several rocksteady rock bands, but where Nowhere to Run comes up short, is in it's lack of doing anything particularly inventive. The sound is tight, and the musicianship is solid, but there is no one standout track or idea here, that might otherwise elevate this, to that fever that some new bands create, when you feel as though you've known them all your life, the first time you hear them; when you can't quite place it, but the sound makes you nostalgic for the moment that just past you by. Having said that, the impression I get listening to Rollin' Empire, is that this is a band, that you need to see live to get the full effect. It's difficult not to picture a large jumping crowd when listening to each one of these tracks, and it's a crowd you feel the need to be in, jumping along and spilling beer and not caring, the type of gig you feel the next day! That bodes well for Rollin' Empire. By Oscar O'Connor
TC are a north Welsh band who specialise in creating dreamy soundscapes with “mesmerising vocals” and whirling, atmospheric guitars. If you get lost in this wispy beautiful cover check yourself before you wreck yourself and know that it’s called “alternative dreampop” which until I received this email I did not know existed. It’s kind of like finding out heaven really exists, albeit a bit more accessible and mortal. I got an Echo & the Bunnymen vibe from this group, but fans of The Cocteau Twins and The Sundays will also fall for Lights That Change. Grungy yet soft, like Chris Cornell in fluffy pyjamas. The BBC are big fans and they sound so accomplished already but amazingly their debut album “Byzantine” will be available in early 2016, via Raphaelite Records. By Aoife Kiernan
op Art Terrorists, Kids on Bridges are from Liverpool. This excited me. UK indie pop bands generally do. But alas, there must have been too much Fairy Liquid in the water as this just sounded too shiny and overproduced for me. Now I would give it a whirl in the indie disco after a few but that’s about it. The vocals sounded Julian Casablanca-y which is fine but come on, what’s the point in being derivative? This band reminded me of a non–gritty Pulp. Still they hold the honour of sharing a stage with Stevie Wonder, but that’s a story for another day. By Aoife Kiernan
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ugust Wells first formed when former Favourite Sons frontman Ken Griffin teamed up with American musician John Rauchenberger in the latter’s hometown of New York. Since then, the duo have been building a fan-base in the city that never sleeps by infiltrating the local live scene and serving as support for artists such as Glen Hansard. The start of 2016 has seen them conquering the crowds on this side of the Atlantic, as they tour around Ireland and Europe in the run up to the release of their new album, Madness Is the Mercy. Its lead single, “A Little Too Real”, dropped in January and acts as an “ode to those who feel the world can be a daunting place”. It immediately establishes a relaxing rhythm as it sails off upon serene instrumentation. The beat remains laidback behind soft singing that’s almost lullaby-like due to its lackadaisical
delivery. The music and melody maintain a mellow mood as they drift gently into a calm chorus. This is followed by another tranquil instrumental display, which bridges the gap to the equally affable second stanza. The music increases in energy at intervals as it unfolds. A restrained riff around the three minute mark paves the way to an enthusiastic climactic chorus, during which the harmony becomes particularly passionate. This manages to put a captivating cap on the proceedings, before it all fades out faintly. August Wells have put together a pleasant pop piece that stays smooth and sedate from start to finish. Its tender tone and altogether innocuous style result in a song that’s the very definition of easy listening, meaning that it’s going to go down well with a large audience. By Dave Simpson
Jonathan L “(Don’t Be Afraid) MOVE”
onathan L, an American living in Berlin, is a broadcasting veteran of forty years. He’s also a music magazine publisher. He has decided to impart his advice and “examination of mortality” upon us in spoken word form.
“(Don’t Be Afraid) MOVE” is his first ever single. I was really excited about this song, having not had much experience of spoken word. Unfortunately for me, this track just fell straight into the Baz Luhrmann leftovers, although his voice at times is reminiscent of John Grant. The soulful vocals and psychedelic guitars are provided by English act Go Satta. The song really isn’t thought provoking at all. In fairness, the song does end with him saying “Or…don’t listen to me at all”. Phew.By Aoife Kiernan
nglish alternative act The Lazlo Device have been drawing a lot of attention to themselves as of late due to the singular sound of their quixotic compositions. The foursome have unleashed two EPs so far and won themselves radio play on a whole host of stations across the UK. With members of Muse and Take That singing their praises too, they certainly have no shortage of influential fans to back them up. On top of that, they’ve managed to get their material broadcast in a BBC documentary, as well as making plenty of waves on the festival scene. Right now though, they’re readying themselves for the release of their new single “Looking Glass” on March 4th. It begins with subtle bass that’s followed by some enchanting orchestral elements, all of which establishes an air of urgency ahead of the soft but stirring serenade of the verse. Pressing percussion joins in then, adding emphasis to the song’s already dire demeanour. It paces purposefully forward until things tone back in the second minute for an exhibition of ethereal music amid a meditative melody. The tempo gradually increases again going forward through cinematic instrumentation and slick singing. It’s all very dramatic and endearing, remaining riveting as it reaches another collection of cool and collected musical motifs around the opening of the fourth minute. From here, the whole thing washes rousingly into a compelling climax, before drifting out delicately. The outcome is an extremely unique indie rock anthem that’s loaded with enthusiasm and expression. The theatrical trait of the instrumentation, coupled with the pensive persuasion of the vocals, makes for a chilling tune that lingers in the mind long after listening. By Dave Simpson
Allow me to be frank Pure M magazine
Frank Carter interview by Jonathan Monahan
or some people, Frank Carter will need absolutely no introduction. They’ll know him as the frontman of the heyday of UK hardcore punk outfit, Gallows and his own follow-up alt-rock project, Pure Love. They’ll also know him as an outrageous live presence, vitriolic lyricist, and for being one of the very few who managed to make it big without compromising. So, after quitting the music business, having a kid, and going back to tattooing professionally, it looked like nobody would ever get to say ‘Frank Carter’s back with a new band and they’re as loud as you hoped’, but here I am, saying exactly that. That band is Frank Carter and the Rattlesnakes, and they’re on their way as I type, aiming to blow Sum 41 and anyone else brave enough to try clear off the stage in the Academy this Wednesday. I caught up with Frank this weekend to pick his brain about his new band, life, and music in general and this is what he had to say.
When I walk out on the stage, it’s like someone’s let the animal out of the cage and you just wait and see who it’s gonna kill first…
Disclaimer: This is an interview with the lead singer of a hardcore punk band. If you’re easily offended by unedited swearing, you’re in the wrong fucking place, hombre.
So, you started off in tattoos at a pretty young age, and at one point, if I’m not mistaken you were studying fine art. Yeah.
When did music come into things? Music’s been there from the beginning, actually. I was in bands before I’d even gone to college. I grew up around music, you know? My family is quite musical; my dad was a DJ when he was younger, so we had a great collection of music in our house. So, for me, music was always there, I just didn’t think that I was ever very good at it. I didn’t think it could be a legitimate
career. I was very good at drawing, so I just decided that I wanted to be a tattooer, so that’s what I put all my effort into. It just happened that this band that I had that was kind of like a bit of a hobby for me, something I was doing on the side, it just connected with people in a massive way and then the next thing I know I had a record deal and I was touring the world. It was all a mistake (laughing). A happy accident, I suppose. So, what did you grow up listening to? Everything from Madness, and the
Specials, through to Michael Jackson, and right through to classical music. Planets are still epic, I still play them to my daughter, heavy tunes. I had all sorts of stuff in my house, but yeah I love Phil Collins still one of the greatest, isn’t he? Queen, David Bowie, all that shit, pretty much every good artist.
Can’t really go wrong with the greats, can you? Yeah, exactly. I was really lucky to have all that stuff growing up. Every time Dire Straits comes on, I’m straight on the
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fucking dancefloor; it’s just rare that it comes nowadays.
Just a bit of Money for Nothing or Sultans of Swing? It’s fucking good.
Can’t fault you, there. So, there’s always been a real identity and sense of honesty to your music Frank Carter songs only sound like Frank Carter songs how important is it that you pour a bit of yourself into your art? I think it’s the only way I know. I don’t
really know how to do it any other way… I’ve only ever tried to be honest with myself, to sing about the kind of things that I’m struggling with or that I’m trying to celebrate. It just so happens that, hey… I’m a human being, and I have the same fucking problems that thousands of other human beings have. I think that’s why it connects. You know, I’m not trying to sugar-coat anything, I’m not trying to wrap it up in a whole bunch of mystery.
I don’t think anyone would ever accuse you of that.
It’s just laid out as it is. I’ve never tried to be too clever with it, I’ve just tried to put it in a way where I can perform it powerfully and honestly, and that’s it, really.
Is there an element of that in performing live? I mean, you put yourself out there, performance-wise. You’ve had quite a few injuries, right? Yeah, it’s never a nice thing; I don’t go out with the intention of hurting myself – I’ve actually calmed down a lot now. Since I’ve had a kid, I’ve kind of stopped bashing my face in. But you know, a lot of that stuff,
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you’re just thinking about things that frustrate the shit out of you and when you take that into an arena that’s full of adrenaline and loud fucking music, and sweat, and fucking tears, and violence, it’s hard to not let that consume you. I only know one way to perform and that is at way past 100%; I want to perform right on the edge of what is not acceptable and that to me is really the only place that any performer should be at the very fucking edge. Because that’s the part that’s most exciting. That’s the moment where, like… ‘Aww fuck, he’s not gonna make that.’
It’s kind of that thing that drew people to Iggy back in the day. Or that gonzo way of being. Exactly, it’s like “Wild Man!” When I walk out on the stage, it’s like someone’s let the animal out of the cage and you just wait and see who it’s gonna kill first… and that to me is exciting. That’s what I grew up loving about hardcore music and what I grew up loving about punk music, that you did not know what the fuck was about to happen, that literally anything could happen. That’s what I kind of encourage at our gigs, I want them to have a good time. I want them to be safe, and I don’t want them to hurt anyone else, but if you hurt yourself, that’s kind of fair game. I just want the music to take over, for that moment anyway. It’s cathartic. I walk out on stage and I feel like an explosion, and then I come off the stage, I scrape myself off stage and I know every night I could not have given anything else. I give everything and that’s what you should do, because you never know if you’re going to make it to the next show. You just don’t know. Why would I ever take it easy on the promise that I’m gonna do this every night for the rest of my life; well, I’ll have a quiet night tonight and tomorrow I’ll pick up the slack. The rope needs to be tight at all times. That’s how we do.
So, obviously a lot of people will know you from Gallows and Pure Love and listening to the Rattlesnakes it’s not exactly more of the same. Don’t get me wrong, it is what you’d expect in terms of ferocity and relentlessness, but has anything changed about the way you write over the past decade? Definitely. For the main part, I’m much more involved in the actual songwriting process now. Before it used to be that I would write lyrics and put them to these structured songs. When I met Dean (Richardson), the first thing I said to him was I want to put my name on the front of this band and in doing that I want to have more involvement in the music, because
I get really sick of watching bands going through the motions and ticking the same boxes every night. You know… backing tracks…
otherwise I’ll feel like a fool. If someone else is writing all my songs for me, I’m not gonna feel right with that. So, it felt really good for me to be able to sit with him and take parts that he’d written and parts that I’d written and put them all together and help structure the songs properly. And that’s kind of how it is now; I’ve sort of taken over the role of the structuring of the songs. He enjoys it… he constantly says to me: You do things that people shouldn’t do. You take a song and you cut the chorus out of it for half the song and then you’ll put it in… it shouldn’t work, but somehow it does. That’s the biggest change, that I’m actually more focused on the music as a whole and I think the songs are better because of it. Like (Dean) said, I’m trying to do things that shouldn’t be done and that to me is making exciting new music.
What does this new band mean to you? I know you’ve put your name to the front of it and personally, you’ve got a lot invested into it, but what was it that made you come back? You were away from the music business for a while. I tried to walk away from it, 100%. I didn’t want to be a part of it at all, I was really sick
of it. I was sick of the downward decline of everything about it and I tried to just walk away and go do something normal. Then I had my kid and I guess that I felt incredibly sad that she would never see that (part of me). That was a part of my life that is so integral to who I am as a person. It’s my identity, and to have a child and think that she might never know that of me was really sad for me, so that was one of the catalysts. This band means everything to me. I don’t want to talk in clichés for this whole fucking interview, but it definitely, genuinely saved me as a person I’m a much better person when I’m playing music, when I’ve got an outlet and a project to focus on at all times. I like working and the most amount of work you can do is when you’re in a band, and you want to retain complete control. I’m lucky that I’ve found a partner with Dean that between us, we can really cover all bases. The band means everything to me and I’m just going to keep pushing it as far as I can. In the very first instance, in the very short term, I’ve never been in a band that’s released more than two albums. At the very beginning of this project we agreed, no matter what happened, that even if
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Johnny Thunders style fucking mean sounding. They’ve got this tension to it where you’re watching them and they’re all kind of standing still but you feel like these guys may just walk off the stage and stab me to death at any minute. It’s an excitement, but not showy… it’s kind of wild, and I like it.
Is that what’s missing from modern music, that sense of danger? Yeah… it’s weird, there’s two ways to do it. You either are that or you’re not, and if you’re not and you try to do it, it comes off overboard and contrived and it’s just laughable. It’s worse than not trying, if you try and fake it. Then the other side of it is just to embrace the fact that you’re not that and you just go and do your thing. I get really sick of watching bands going through the motions and ticking the same boxes every night. You know… backing tracks…
after album two we fucking hate each other, we will fucking find a way to write album three. There will definitely be a third Rattlesnakes record… as long as I don’t die before that, which I guess is always a possibility. No, you’re sensible these days, that won’t happen. Yeah, hopefully.
You’re heading out on the K! Tour with Sum 41, so are you excited about that? Would you say you’re a fan? I can’t say I’m a fan, I mean, I know their songs anyone who was alive at the time knows their songs; I am really looking forward to it. I’m looking forward to seeing how they are now and most importantly, I’m looking forward to trying to upstage them every night. That’s kind of why I’m doing this (laughing). They’re a huge band; they’re fucking massive… but they’re playing songs they wrote a long time ago and I’m playing songs I wrote eight months ago. I’ve got that on my side and I have an appreciation for this band that is brand new. I am not gonna go down without a fight, so I am here to steal every single fan from every band that’s the goal,
to just get out there and play in front of as many people as I can and try and convince them all. I don’t have to be your favourite band, but if you could come and see me when I tour, that’d be great (laughing). If you buy my record, that’d be great I just want to play for more people.
Can’t argue with that. So, are there any newer bands out there you feel are doing things right, or you’d call yourself a fan of, even? Definitely, I mean, we’re bringing this band with us, we’re playing a show in Stoke on one of the days off and we’re bringing this band called God Damn with us. I think they’re one of the best bands out there at the minute. They wrote and amazing record last year and I think they’re in the studio now putting another one together. They just totally get it, I love their band. My little brother’s band Blackhole, they’ve just reformed and they’re in the studio at the minute writing new songs and it sounds fucking amazing. Yeah, there’s a lot of great music out there, there’s this band called Loom and they’ve got this 70s New York punk vibe about them, they’re awesome. Kind of like
Co-ordinated spins and all that bullshit? Get the fuck out of here with that shit, you know? It’s just not for me. I get that it’s important to them and I get that it matters to their fans, but it’s not me. I wanna see someone that is not thinking about how it looks. I wanna see someone that is consumed by music when they’re delivering a performance, they’re completely lost in what they’re doing. So much so that you don’t know that they may damage themselves or others coming out of that trance. Look at Led Zeppelin, look at The Who, look at Iggy, like you said, look at Bowie. It was everything to them and it consumed them, almost to the point of annihilation. That to me, is what I’m trying to do. I go out every night and I get lost in it to a point that I almost can’t come back from it. That’s what they were about they were feeling the music and it’s important not to lose that. I think that’s been lost; it’s definitely gone astray a little bit. Nowadays, as long as you’re wearing the right t-shirt, as long as you’re friends with the right bands, or you’ve got the right sound, then you’ll be fine and you’ll have thousands and thousands of fans. I don’t want that. I want millions of fans and I want them to like it because it’s real. Frank Carter and the Rattlesnakes will be performing in front of a sold-out crowd in The Academy, Dublin as part of the 2016 Kerrang! Tour, on February 10th. Also on the bill are ROAM and Sum 41. Check out the Rattlesnakes’ debut album, Blossom and buy a copy, practically anywhere that sells music.
Pure M magazine
alifornian born, London based artist Portrait is a highly experimental musician, with a focus on the synth driven, ethereal end of the art-pop scale. Her self-titled debut EP ‘Portrait’ is a small taste of things to come. At a very brisk 15mins, 53 seconds, this EP had a lot to prove in a short space of time, and in that endeavour it certainly succeeded. Following in the footsteps of David Byrne, Laurie Anderson and Erik Satie, Portrait has mastered the subtle blend of the timelessly classical and the ultra-modern too modern to be classified yet. Interestingly, she lists people like Tracy Chapman, PJ Harvey, Otis Redding and Smoky Robinson as her influences elements I can’t hear personally. I hesitate to use the word ‘soundscape’, but there is no other way of describing the painterly qualities of this record. The EP cover bears testament to this ethos, in which she looks like she’s had an argument with Jackson Pollock. The record is characterised by light, celestial, melodies seemingly supported by nothing, yet still remaining airborne like a cantilevered staircase. The opening track ‘boh’ opens with a delicate, deftly handled piano melody reminiscent of Erik Satie before slowly becoming embroiled in a warzone with deep, unsettling synth rumbling beneath the whispered vocals. ‘Phoenix Rise’ is a more puzzling tune. It has a stuttering, halting beginning before the plaintive vocals kick into what seems to be a straightforward love song. This is then turned on its head with the introduction of confrontational jazz chords on the piano and a frantic beat giving chase
to the tempo. This tune is cinematic in scale like the soundtrack to a story we can’t see. The final two tracks on the EP are the highlights. ‘Tremble’ is a sinisterly seductive siren call. The classical tones of the piano are at odds with the futuristic trappings of the synth and percussion. It’s like an ancient exhibit in a museum under bulletproof glass two elements that should not go together, yet they do. It is perhaps a comment of the ancient dance of courtship in the maelstrom of the modern world. This tune builds wonderfully and stays with you all day. The final track ‘Smile’ sounds like it should be from a different record. A positive, upbeat number with more of that ethereal synth beat, ‘Smile’ also displays the versatility of Portrait’s vocal ability. Normally when one begins to write a review, there is usually a reluctance to get started. This may be due to the novel nature of the music the right words to describe it could be difficult to find. More often than not, however, is that the music just fails to inspire any thought whatsoever. The opposite is true of Portrait. Not ten seconds into the EP I was reaching for the pen to take notes. For better or worse, you cannot be indifferent towards this artist. The danger for her longevity lies in her accessibility the high-concept focus on art for art’s sake might alienate listeners who just want to hear a good tune. On the other hand, those who want some brains behind the music would do well to give Portrait a listen. By Sarah Swinburne
uath is a band formed in Donegal by Robert Mulhern. Along with Ashley Mobasser on saxophone and with a revolving door of contributors from Donegal, Galway and Dublin, they play a blend of post-punk, psychedelic rock, shoegaze and much more, with their songs predominantly performed in the Irish language. Their latest release, “Casting Shadows Over the Sun” is a reworking of a song by Buncrana-based duo Shammen Delly. In contrast to the sparse, ambient original, Tuath’s take is led by spiky guitar playing and a more rock-influenced drum beat. Where Shammen Delly’s track appears to be influenced by trip-hop, with looped vocals and and a subtle hook, Tuath have upped the tempo and opted to keep the vocals minimal. Cutting the track down from seven and a half minutes to five suits their style better, and never sounds boring or repetitive. Vocally, this track has elements of shoegaze legends My Bloody Valentine; at times barely audible, but just audible enough to create a subtle, enigmatic atmosphere. Musically, I would recommend this track to fans of Yeasayer and Django Django. The guitar sound, which is also present on some of Tuath’s more punk influenced tracks, sounds refreshed here when coupled with a slower drumbeat and more electronic accompaniment. On this release, Tuath have taken a slowburning electronic track, and changing little, but adding elements of their own style, have transformed it into a danceable, shoegazable rock song. Subtlety seems to be the key here, and the resulting piece seems to fit snugly halfway between Tuath and Shammen Delly. This is a great track, and a great introduction for me to a band I hope to hear a lot more from in the near future. By Paul Ryan
Pure M magazine
Band Called Death is a phenomenal 2012 documentary about an all black trio band from Detroit who were punk, before punk was punk in the early 1970s. The documentary catalogs the the three brothers who formed Death in Spring 1974 after the death of their father. From the struggles of being ahead of their time to the modern day revival of Death, the documentary takes a very personal look into the lives of the band members. The name Death, although seemingly dark, has Christian connotations and is a celebration of life just as much as it is a grievance. But in the 1970s this was too hard a concept for many to understand. The three brothers, Bobby Hackney, Dannis Hackney and David Hackney were all heavily influenced by the Beatles and later The Who, who gave David Hackney, the would be the leader of the band, their new direction away from funk to rock. It is very obvious throughout the documentary that the three brothers were tremendously close with the sentence 'back up your brother' being said more than several times. Death had their humble beginnings playing music which caused their neighbours to gripe and moan, as this rock music was alien to the black community of Detroit. Singles such as 'Keep On Knocking' and 'Politicians In My Eyes' were far ahead of their time and predated The Ramones. Despite being offered contracts of $20,000 with the condition of changing the bands
name, Death turned down the deal and was rejected many more times by other labels across the US and UK. The name Death was a sticking point which prevented the band from expanding, but was the focal point that band member David Hackney had seen as being of significant meaning of the bands image and ethos. Despite Dannis and Bobby's protest to change the name to be signed, they stood by their brother as family was everything to the three brothers. Eventually the band broke up and David Hackney returned to Detroit while his two brothers stayed in New England where they turned to reggae and formed the considerably more successful 'Lambsbread'. It is obvious that David stayed true to his roots with rock and seemed to be more of a scorned visionary who took the alcohol and continued to write music which was expressive of himself. He had never given up on his dream and the conception of Death. In 2000 David passed away from lung cancer, a result perhaps of his heavy smoking and the master tapes of Death's music which he had given to his brothers months earlier were placed in an attic where they had gathered dust. Usually this is where the story ends, a dead end where the aspirations of a man might not amount to an ending befitting their talents. But as David said before his death, 'the world will come looking for these tapes' after his death. in 2008 this is
exactly what happened as a Death cult following grew with many collectors and fans were desperately trying to find vinyls which were pressed decades before which were still in circulation. On eBay one such vinyl record was sold for $800. Death was revived and the world came to see what punk was before it was ever even punk. It was raw, black and beautiful. Today, Death is still touring and making new music. A tribute band of the sons of Bobby and Dannis called Rough Francis, a tribute to their uncle David Hackney, had brought the music back to life with their performance of Death's music. It was a very emotional high point in the documentary to see the sons of the men who were in the 1970s doing something exceptional on stage. Death's music, which was ignored by labels and radio stations, is accepted today by a generation of people who look upon it not as a novelty, but as a part of rock history. All together the documentary shows a band ahead of their time, which is usually the case for visionaries in creative fields. Death could have been another footnote in the history of rock music, but instead they were revived to show the world that punk's lineage is far more diverse and interesting than previously thought. A band Called Death is an emotional, entertaining and most of all informative documentary which I dare say is essential viewing. By Tomas Swinburne
The Art Crimes Pure M magazine
By Rose Flood
here really must be something in the water in Cork as this week I had the pleasure of meeting up with yet another talented group from the People’s Republic. ‘The Art Crimes’, founded in 2011 and comprises; Grace McMahon, Vocals, Gary Baus, Alto Saxophone, Stephen Kirby, Guitars, Niall Dennehy, Drums and percussion, Tom Edwards, Tenor Saxophone and Tim O’Leary, Bass. Consisting of original material, the band took a slow and steady approach to song writing beginning their adventure as far back as 2012. The hare and the turtle fable come to mind, and in this case a slow and steady approach really did pay off. Unlike some bands, The Art Crimes put passion and talent into their song writing instead of pushing out an album for the sake of it. Debuting their new album ‘Radio’ on the Californian based record label SUGO Music, at The 2015 Guinness Cork Jazz Festival. The album was a collective effort from all the band members and they describe their sound as a mix of Jazz, Disco, RnB, Reggae, African, folk, Bossa Nova. We caught up with the band this week to get the scoop on the new album and touring with world renowned Burlesque star, Foxy P.Cox.
First of all, The Art Crimes Band, an interesting name for a band, where did it come from? When we first started out we were mainly messing about with world music ideas and jamming them out. We’d try things like putting three different genres into one song. Starting a song in a waltz, then into reggae then into ska. Just odd combinations and there was no one there to say “here lads, you can’t do that!”. So the name seemed fitting considering we thought it was criminal some of the ideas we were experimenting with. Plus Steely Dan is a massive influence of mine and they had a tour in the mid-nineties called “The Art Crimes Tour”, so it’s a bit of a nod to them too. Then the name was cemented when we Googled it and found there was no one else out there going by the name “The Art Crimes Band”.
How did all of you come together to form The Art Crimes band? In late 2010 some of us in the band were thrown together to write and perform live music for a charity vaudeville and bellydance show at The Firkin Crane Theatre in Cork. Hence the connection with world music. We had such fun doing it and playing together we decided to meet up every Tuesday night in the back of a tiny pub in Cork City and just jam for the night. That carried on for about about a year and things grew organically from there.
It’s been an eventful year for you guys, with the release of your debut album ‘Radio’. As a band from Cork, how did it feel to debut your album at the Guinness Cork Jazz festival? The Guinness Jazz Festival is the highlight of the year for most bands in Cork. The city is just alive with so many music lovers who are out to hear music and discover new bands. Launching ‘Radio’ at the festival just seemed like the right thing to do. We were very lucky to have the support of the Cork Jazz Festival organising committee and Guinness’ with
promoting the launch. It was also fitting to launch it in the stunning west wing of Cork City Gaol and Radio Museum. A night we’ll never forget for sure.
There is quite a mix of sounds in the album ‘Radio’, what influences would you guys say attributes to the music? The band is a melting pot of tastes and styles. We all have different backgrounds. Some are jazz, metal, funk, RnB, straight ahead rock. On paper it shouldn’t work but somehow it does and it gives the band a unique sound. Plus it’s great to learn from each other, discover new music and artists through one another. Asides from that we do all have common ground with artists like David Bowie, Rory Gallagher, Hall & Oates, Etta James, Muddy Waters, Joni Mitchell. Sometimes you can bored playing the one style of music all the time. It’s nice to keep things interesting.
You have said the band were late to the writing process, how important was it for the band to write an album of your own material? Was it difficult to collaborate as a band?
Pure M magazine We started jamming world music ideas back at the beginning based around the bellydance show in Firkin Crane but they were what they were. Just jammed out ideas with no lyrics. Because we’d started collaborating so early on writing together wasn’t tough but the task of songwriting is hard. Trying to study the craft and art form of composing a bridge, melody, chorus, trying to not over complicate things etc. We’re still learning and developing as song writers. It’s all a learning curve. So our main aim is to make the next song better than the last and keep growing. All of us in the band have been playing music professional now since we were 17 or 18. We copped on quite early that there’s only so far commercially you can take doing covers. By also creating our own music we could create our own opportunities and take things to the next level. You started writing the album as far back as 2012, did you feel at any stage this is process will never end? There were times it felt like that recording the album but we were late bloomers with song writing, especially lyrics. The first single was ‘Love For A Lark’ and it took countless rewrites and demos until we arrived at the final version you hear on the record. It started at a bossa nova. We had to remember that you don’t fail in the song writing process, you learn. Something’s not working? find out why, go away, fix it, come back, try again. There’s been a lot of trial and error along the way so we’ve had to take our time doing this and just trust the process.
Just two songs from the album are not written by you, how did these songs come to be in the album? They were written by two very close friends of ours Colm Hayes who wrote Smooth Operator [not of Sade fame] and Cárthach Ó’Nuanáin who wrote Radio. Myself, Colm & Cárthach were in a band about ten years ago called Kudos. They started writing songs in their mid-teens and were the main song writers in the group. We put out one album in 2005 and made loads of demos after that which never saw the light of day until now. We disbanded in 2007. They wrote so many amazing songs which ten years on are still sitting in our studio on a hard disk. It seemed a shame to let them go to waste so we’ve begun to include ones that suit The Art Crimes Band vibe and finally bring some of those old songs to audiences’ ears.
You seem to have a sense of the world and community from what I gather from your music, do you feel that music these days is
soulless and commercial and doesn’t highlight the real issues that affect society? Pop music today has become very sterile and doesn’t really seem to be saying anything of value. It also seems the art of the protest song and observations on failings in our society is gone from commercial music. Look back at Dylan, Joni, Neil Young. It’s like it doesn’t get a proper voice. Although we started late in the song writing game we did set ourselves a goal of not falling into the old cliques and writing solely about unrequited love and broken hearts. We’ve tried really hard to write about the world in general, war, materialism, nature, sex, globalisation. You know, all the light hearted topics [laughs]. We also wanted to tell other peoples stories. You see someone walking down the street or sitting alone at a bar and we all wonder what their story is? So we thought we’d draw on things like that for inspiration also.
Do you wish to leave a legacy of a band that made the music they wanted to make rather than music to please the record company? Yes, very much so. Thankfully we have an arrangement with a record label in the USA that suits us. They distribute our work globally, publish it and have it licensed for TV & film but they don’t get involved with us creatively. We’re always open to advice, input and constructive criticism however we very much still like to do our thing and experiment with new ideas and sounds like we always have. Some people dream of having a major record deal but it’s no good when they bank all the rights, royalties, ticket, merchandise, record and DVD sales to all your work. Leaving you with a bare minimum wage. There’s plenty of people willing to sign their lives away in return for fame but that’s not for us. It’s vital to stay in control and own your work, otherwise you have no future. We don’t want to be famous, we just want to be successful.
I have to ask about the burlesque show? It is one of the biggest Burlesque shows in Ireland. How did you become involved with it?
After we had done that Bellydance show in 2010 some of the dancers, like us, got together and formed their own group. A few months after the show they approached us about doing something together in April 2012. We did a few more shows, opened it up to other performance styles and began to work with Ireland’s top burlesque performer Foxy P.Cox. We were the only band in Ireland to perform fully live with choreographed Burlesque and belly dance. The shows grew in popularity and included aerial dance, pole dance and hula-hoop. The last show were performed in Cork at The Crane Lane Theatre had over 30 burlesque performers with us. One of the biggest in Ireland so far. We took the show to K-Fest, Killorglin back in May 2015. It’s been an honour to work with so many amazingly talented people in the Burlesque & pole community.
What are the plans for The Art Crimes Band in 2016? Will there be an Irish tour? So far we are currently lining up dates around the country for this summer to promote the album and take it out on the road. You can see gig dates as they come in on our website which is updated regularly. Saturday April 30th is International Jazz Day and we’ll be representing Ireland for that with a show at The Woodford here in Cork that night. It’s a free gig and all are welcome to come join the celebrations. In between all of that we’ll be chipping away and new songs and sounds bit by bit which we’ll be adding to our live sets as we finish them and hopefully put them on the next album. So plenty more to come. I for one am really looking forward to The Art Crimes Band going on tour this year and I am intrigued by their Burlesque show and wouldn’t mind catching a performance if they wish to reprise the show. In the meantime ‘Radio’, produced by The Art Crimes Band is available now on ITunes, Googleplay, Amazon, Spotify and their official website www.theartcrimesband.com and all other good music retailers and of course we at PureM will keep you updated with all the news from The Art Crimes Band.
The Biggest Duo You Loopexx Have Never Heard Of T Pure M magazine
Here We Are, There You Go!
wenty One Pilots are the biggest duo that you have never heard of. Why you ask? One can only begin to wonder why. The duo were formed in 2009, by Tyler Joseph, Nick Thomas and Chris Salih. The trio began building a large audience across the state of Ohio, USA, as well as the Midwest. They toured, used social media religiously, and connected with fans as much as they physically could. However, Nick Thomas and Chris Salih opted out of the trio and left Tyler Joseph as it's only member. Joseph then went on to continue his career and joined forces with Joshua Dun to re-create Twenty One Pilots as a duo in 2010. In 2011, the duo released their first album together, Regional at Best on the 8th of July. This bares tracks such as 'Guns For Hands' and 'Car Radio'. In 2012, the duo released 'Migraine - EP'. This EP has 5 tracks, including a live version of their track 'Migraine'. As well as this, in 2013, the duo also released their 'Holding Onto You - EP'. This included a cover of 'Can't Help Falling In Love', a version which recently went viral online. However, after being signed to Fueled By Ramen, a branch off of Warner Music Records, the duo released their album 'Vessel'. This also bares the tracks 'Guns For Hands' and 'Car Radio', two of several tracks the duo are well known for. The album also bares the track 'House Of Gold', a fun and upbeat track which also seems to be a fan favourite. The duo then returned with yet another album in 2015, 'Blurryface'. The album was released on the 17th of May and reached number one on the U.S Billboard 200 chart. The album holds tracks such as 'Stressed Out', 'Fairly Local', 'Lane Boy' and 'Ride'. All four of these tracks have
since been released as singles, as well as a music video being created for each. It is only recently, however, that 'Stressed Out' is getting airplay on both television and radio, which is quite baffling despite the duo's massive success not only in the U.S, but Worldwide. With regards to touring, the duo have visited Ireland in 2014 and got rave reviews for their show in The Academy 2, as well as supporting the popular rock band All Time Low in Belfast. The duo have also toured all over the U.S and are set to continue their Blurryface Tour into the U.K. As well as this, they are one of several headliners at Reading Festival 2016. One can only hope this duo, who's performances leave people awe-struck, will continue to be seriously successful as they progress in their career and gain more recognition in the mainstream music industry. One can also argue that Twenty One Pilots are doing well enough without being in mainstream music with a genre that no fan or critic can pin point, however, that is up for an individual to decide upon as they please. By Jade Louise
ustrian alternative act Loopexx was created by artists Eric K. and James Philip “Pipo” Platzer with the intention of spreading optimism around the world through buoyant beats and hopeful harmonies. To that end, they’re offering all of the earnings from their upcoming single, “Here We Are, There You Go!” to charity. The cheery tune combines each of their individual talents to deliver their own singular spin on the genre of rock. It begins with distorted guitars that quickly transition into a fast and forceful riff. What really lets it stand out from the start though is that it forgoes traditional drumming techniques in favour of some impressive beatboxing. It’s a creative decision that meets with a lot of success. The vocal percussion melds well with the instrumentation, giving rise to a rapid rhythm underneath absorbing singing. Things stay smooth and speedy moving forward, exuding an exciting sound that’s both bright and upbeat. A rapping refrain, during which the riffs increase in intensity, feels fun in the second minute. Another immersive melody arrives afterwards as the music gets lighter again, while maintaining the merry mood. There’s a very effervescent air surrounding the whole thing, which allows it to engross all the way to its enthusiastic ending. The outcome is a song that doesn’t seem to take itself too seriously. The accomplished execution of the beatboxing means that by the time the track reaches its terminus, listeners are likely to have forgotten that it’s the result of someone’s voice rather than any sort of apparatus. This, along with the infectious riffs and simple serenade, produce a pleasant pop/rock piece with plenty of personality. By Dave Simpson
Straight Out Of Llandudno Pure M magazine
to4 is the musical project of Phil Goss, a musician, writer and psychotherapist from England. Having previously released an album in 2006 and has returned ten years later with an EP entitled “Tip It”, which was released on January 12th. The first track is the title track. The song features little more than drums, piano and vocals. Clocking in at over 5 minutes, I feel that the instrumentation just isn't enough to carry it. There are some good ideas on the piano, but it gets old quick. There's also a lack fo energy for a song that feels like it should be firing on all cylinders. This could be helped in part by Goss' vocal performance, which sounds quote quiet. Overall this isn't a great starting point. The next song is “It's Not That It's Not”. Musically there's a lot more going on in this track; once again the piano is the main focus but there's also acoustic guitar as the song introduces electric keyboard as well as electric guitar as well as violin part which I feel gives a nice sense of
progression. This song is considerably shorter, which when combined with more instrumentation helps keep the listeners attention much better than “Tip It”. The third and final tune is “Walk”, it features some great synth work, especially what sounds like a MIDI guzheng. Even though it sounds nothing like the actual instrument, it works really well for the song. While being instrumental and pretty straightforward, the song conveys a great feeling of warmth and optimism which is helped by the warm sounding synthesizers and the main melody. This is probably the standout track on the EP. I'm not too sure how to feel about 5to4, there's a lot of variety to be found in these three tracks, but there's no doubt that Goss is much more suited to certain styles as opposed to others. If this was an attempt to try several different styles and see what works I can understand that, but the finished project comes across as a mishmash of songs with little cohesion. By Will White
atfish and The Bottlemen, British rock band formed in Llandudno, North Wales in 2007, are arguably one of the best band's to emerge from the UK in the last number of years. The group consists of four members: Van McCann, Benji Blakeway, Bob Hall and Johnny Bond. The group's name originated from a busker who plays on the streets of Sydney, Australia. Van McCann was on a family holiday, spotted the busker and came up with the band's name from this encounter. Catfish and The Bottlem`en signed to Communion Records in 2013, a record company owned and ran by Mumford & Sons' keyboard player Ben Lovett. In 2013, Catfish and The Bottlemen released their first three singles; 'Homesick', 'Rango' and 'Pacifier'. The music video for 'Homesick', released 2 years later on the 17th of April, adorns clips of the group performing live. One of the band's most well known track's is 'Tyrant's. This track was written by Van McCann aged 14. In 2014, Catfish and The Bottlemen signed to Island Records and released their next single, 'Kathleen'. 'The Balcony', the group's debut album, was released on the 15th of September 2014, was produced by Jim Abbiss. Abbiss is most known for producing for Arctic Monkeys and Adele. The album holds 11 tracks, several of which were released as singles. The name of the album derived from McCann writing the track 'Cocoon' on a balcony in New York as well as recording the album alongside his band mates in a house which had a balcony. As well as this, McCann is a fan of TS Elliot's poem 'The Balcony'. Since it's release, the album has gone on to recieve a gold certification as awarded by the British Phonographic Industry, as well as reaching number 13 on the US Billboard Top Rock albums chart. Catfish and The Bottlemen are set to play several festivals this year, as well as releasing a second album. By Jade Louise
Interview: Bartle D'Arcy, Exhibition Spokesman of the Revolution 1916 Exhibition A Pure M magazine
lthough we're only a month into 2016, to many it must feel like the year is nearly over. Talk of 2016 and the centenary commemorations of the Easter Rising have dominated nearly all aspects of public life since mid-2015, and preparations are only set to move up a gear as we move closer to March. Only recently, I had to do a double-take on a shop display selling chocolate bars in the shape of the Proclamation. I'll choose not to name to shop in order to save their blushes, but my insides are still cringing. Thankfully, not all commemorations are quite as brazen as those patriotic chocolatiers. The Revolution 1916 exhibition gets under way in Dublin's Ambassador Theatre on the 27th of February, which features the largest private collection of 1916 artefacts of over 500 items, and interactive exhibitions designed to transport you back to revolutionary Dublin. I caught up with Bartle D'Arcy, spokesman for the exhibition and Sinn FĂŠin national programme co-ordinator for commemoration, to find out more about upcoming the exhibition in Dublin's Ambassador Theatre.
Revolution 1916 is being lauded as "the original and authentic exhibition" for the centenary celebrations. What exactly makes this exhibition a vital part of the 1916 experience for the Irish public? The exhibition is located in the Ambassador Theatre, which is of historical significance as in 1913, the Irish Volunteers held a mass meeting there where the men of 1916 signed up. In 1916 itself, after the surrender, it was the site where the garrisons of the GPO and Four Courts were kept out overnight . The exhibition will feature over 500 original artefacts from the Irish Volunteers Commemorative Organisation (I.V.C.O), including an original Proclamation, Howth Mausers, uniforms, badges, medals, and other weaponry. The interpretation follows the story of a
young girl, Molly O'Reilly, who plays a central role right the way through the decade of commemoration 1913-1923, and places the women of the revolution back in a central role. Downstairs, the visitor will follow in the footsteps of history as you move through replica sets of the main events of the 1916 Rising. Visit the GPO and touch the original door handle from 1916, before exiting down Moore St under fire and into No.16 where the Provisional Government decided to surrender. Enter the dark corridors of Kilmainham, sit in Pearse's cell, before taking the last lonely walk to the Stone Breakers yard hearing the last words of the executed leaders as you go. Find out about the aftermath of 1916 The
War of Independence and Civil War feature, and look straight down into history viewing the underground tunnels under the building used by Michael Collins' Squad.
Do you think it's important that this exhibition is being held in a historically significant location like the Ambassador Theatre on Upper O'Connell Street, which saw a lot of political and military action prior to and throughout Easter week 1916? Absolutely, as the Ambassador retains much of its original plaster work interior features identifiable from an ink drawing when Parnell spoke there in the 1880's. As mentioned, the Volunteers held a mass meeting here in 1913, the building was the backdrop to where the British Soldiers
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paraded the captured Irish Republic Flag in 1916, and it was also where the 1916 veterans received their armbands in 1935.
What do you think is the most important, or historically significant, piece featured in this exhibition? A black Howth Mauser Rifle I.G. MOD 71, which was said to have belonged to Thomas Clarke.
The overall theme of this exhibition is the Proclamation itself. In particular, the exhibition seems to examine the lead up to 1916 and the "six times during the past three hundred years they have asserted it in arms." Why do you think the Easter Rising hold such a revered place in Irish history, considering there had been an armed rebellion in Ireland almost every 50 years prior to 1916? The Easter Rising succeeded in tearing a hole in the fabric of the British Empire from which it never recovered, and was an inspiration to other nations to resist colonial oppression, as in the case of India. In Ireland, it changed public opinion at a time in history that empires were crumbling and small nations began to assert their rights to self-determination. It set in train a chain of events that led to partial freedom for Ireland which remains partitioned to this day. Despite revisionists trying to lessen its significance, it is now accepted as the birth of the nation- but this does not sit comfortably with some. One of the more unique aspects of this exhibition will be a uniformed "Padraig Pearse" reading the Proclamation on the steps of the Ambassador every day at midday. How do you think passers-by will react? From experience of having uniformed reenactors on the streets, I think this will become one of the iconic images of the centenary year, as the general public and overseas tourists love living history.
As the nation gears up for the Easter Rising centenary, there's been a lot of debate surrounding national commemoration. In particular, people have been heavily critical of programmes like Rebellion for their historically inaccurate dramatizations of events, or political parties twisting the memory of the Rising for their own gains. Do you think there's a danger of the events being misrepresented, or even hijacked for ulterior motives? If you look at the history of how political parties have commemorated the major anniversaries of 1916, it will give you a clearer picture of who is genuinely interested. For the 50th anniversary in
1966, Fianna Fáil under de Valera commemorated "The Men of 1916" and Fine Gael and Labour were absent. For the 60th anniversary, Fine Gael and Labour banned commemorations and arrested James Connolly's daughter Nora. For the 75th anniversary Fianna Fáil banned commemoration. For the 90th anniversary, Fianna Fáil revived the National Commemoration in an election year. For the 100th anniversary, Fine Gael and Labour are spending €50 million on the commemoration. Sinn Féin have commemorated each and every year since 1917, but when it comes to
the Centenary year, they get accused by the other parties of "hijacking". The Revolution 1916 Exhibition runs from the 27th of February for a limited time only.
Tickets, €15 for adults and €12 for children, are available on Ticketmaster or at the venue box office.
Telephone bookings: 24 hrs: 0818 719 300 (ROI) | Tel: 0844 277 4455 (N Ireland)
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he history of Cinema has had many man-against-the-elements stories. From the various incarnations of Tarzan (1918-present), John Boorman’s Deliverance (1972) and even the likes of Tom Hanks in Cast Away (2000), it is a long rich history telling often bleak tales of survival, sacrifice, and in some cases, redemption. The Survivalist, debut feature by director Stephen Fingleton, continues this tradition, and with some incredible (and gritty) results. In a post-apocalyptic world, starvation is rampant. A lone survivalist (Martin McCann) maintains a small settlement for himself deep in the forest. Any intruder is an enemy, and trust is an issue that does not exist in this world. Defending his shack with bear traps and his shotgun, he goes about his daily life growing fruit and vegetables in his own personal plantation. His isolated existence is interrupted by the
arrival of Kathryn (Olwen Fouere) and her daughter Milja (Mia Goth), who in exchange for food and shelter, offer the Survivalist Miljia’s services in bed. Set in a world where nobody can be trusted and stakes are raised ever higher by the minute, our unnamed protagonist accepts this offer, but what impact will this decision have on his existence? Many will watch The Survivalist and see many similarities to Jeremy Saulnier’s Blue Ruin (2013), an amazing independent production that also worked by using it's budgetary restraints to create an intense minimalist feel. The film itself is a very slow burn but it works in the narrative's favour so perfectly. Nothing is seen beyond the woods, what we have is a raw, gritty, animalistic sense of what is sadly a reality for these characters, and we feel for them every step of the way, even at times that we don’t want to. The tension that builds
between the protagonist and his guests is nothing short of edge-of-your-seat material. Many key moments throughout the film play toy with suggestion, making the audience come up with their own conclusions rather than spell it out for them. A key component to the atmosphere is the unique cinematography work by Damien Elliot, which not only make us see the cleverness of The Survivalist's name sake, has you gripping at the arm rest, when you don’t even realise it. An extremely solid and remarkable debut from Fingleton. A stripped-down, bareessentials, wince-inducing thriller, which knows exactly what it is doing, and knows exactly where it will take its audience, leaving it burned in their minds for days to come. Excellent stuff. By Joe Homan
Coming This Friday... Pure M magazine
February the 12th has plenty to offer. For those arty types we have Tilda Swinton in Luca Guadagnino's A Bigger Splash. The pair worked together on Guadagnino's well received 2009 film I Am Love. Expect a typically brilliant Swinton and a film brimming with beauty.
here are times when an atmosphere alone makes a film, and this is very much the case with Strangerland, director Kim Farrant's mysterious Aussie outback thriller. Set in the remote confines of the town of Nathgari, the film focuses on the travails of the Parker family, headed by Catherine (Nicole Kidman) and her husband Matthew (Joseph Fiennes), and how their lives are altered dramatically following the disappearance of their two children prior to the arrival of a severe sandstorm. Opening with a ghostly scene highly reminiscent of Peter Weir's 1975 classic Picnic at Hanging Rock, we watch as a panoramic shot of the foreboding Australian wilderness tracks youngest son Tom as he trudges, disoriented through the shadowy town streets, to the overarching sound of an eery, whispered soliloquy by his older sister Lilly. And from here Farrant, in her debut feature, does her best to maintain a wonderfully unnerving atmosphere throughout - helped in no small part by some great cinematography, and a wonderfully creepy score by T Bone Burnett contemporary, Keefus Ciancia but the film remains a classic example of style over substance. While spectacles like the opening scene - and another excellent shot of Catherine and Matthew emerging, bedraggled and exhausted, from the
depths of the sandstorm - do their part in absorbing the audience into a world of fear and uncertainty, they simply cannot disguise the film's over-riding flaws, most notably a hackneyed storyline, and a painfully laboured narrative that drags on long after the suspense dries up. The acting, as well, certainly leaves a lot to be desired. After playing so many similar roles in her career you would think Kidman would have this kind of performance down to a tee, but once again she is at her melodramatic worst as the hysterical, sexually frustrated Catherine. Fiennes also misses a trick in his wooden portrayal of Matthew, a character whose unnaturally envious fixation with his unruly teenage daughter could have made for a very interesting cinematic creation, while Hugo Weaving is prudent, but still pretty anonymous as Ray, the concerned police detective in charge of the investigation. Although the film does raises some interesting questions regarding parenthood, isolation, and attitudes towards aboriginal people, overall it fails to make a significant dramatic impact, and leaves too many stones unturned in its attempt at a compelling, original thriller. If it's that kind of film you're after, you could do a whole lot worse than looking up Picnic at Hanging Rock. By James Glynn
For those who...OK I'm not entirely sure who this is aimed at but it's Pride and Prejudice and Zombies. It just sounds great. Especially if all those dull as dishwater characters get devoured. And Zoolander 2 of course. How could we forget. Ben Stiller. Owen Wilson. You know the deal. And you love it. And of course how could we forget the Ryan Reynolds' sexy, troublesome, mischievous and dangerous Deadpool. Also: Will Smith's Concussion, Irish film The Survivalist, Gem and the Holograms and Alvin and the Chipmunks: The Road Chip (get it? Ugh!)
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The Top 5 Best Worst Movies
By Shane Brothwood
othing says 90 minutes of laughter like watching a good bad movie. The best part about watching a god awful film as opposed to a mediocre one is that it somehow has entertaining qualities. The film producers set out with the goal to make a good movie. Yet by failing through production values, poor dialogue, and gaping plot holes, the end result is simply hilarious. Without further ado, here are the five movies I believe are the best at being the worst.
remember hearing rumours a couple of years ago that a new Goosebumps movie was being made, which immediately sparked my interest as I recalled the frightening luminous green and pink monster books that covered the children’s section of my library back home. Then there was the original TV series first broadcast in 1997 on BBC received backlash for it’s U rating as parents viewed the monsters Pumpkinhead and the Clown from When the Ghost Dog Howls, as “too gross, shocking and violent with dangerous, imitable behaviour”. Here, director Rob Letterman, having previously directed children’s films such as Monsters vs. Aliens and Shark Tale, has collaborated with R.L. Stine to create a creepy and entertaining live action film suitable for all the family. The film stars Dylan Minnette as Zach, the new kid on the block curious about his next-door neighbours daughter, Hannah played by Odeya Rush. Hannah’s eccentric and protective father (Jack Black) is an anti-social oddball, furious about any sort of relationship between the two. Black’s character suits him perfectly as it feels like he’s performing one of his typically animated and weird characters.
The plot then reveals that Jack Black is indeed the legendary R.L. Stine, hiding his identity and books from the world in a bid to protect them from the monsters he has created. These monsters then come to life to cause chaos in the town of Madison with Zach, Hannah and R.L. Stine working together to banish the demons. The CGI is definitely far better than anticipated as the likes of the Werewolf and Giant Preying Mantis leap out of the book and onto the screen. Perhaps the greatest Goosebumps monster however is Slappy - a ventriloquist’s dummy set to send a shiver down any child’s spine. Also voiced by Jack Black, some of you might recognise Slappy from TV episodes such as “Night of the Living Dummy III” and “Bride of the Living Dummy,” He plays the main antagonist in the film as he leads the monsters to destroy Mr R.L. Stine. There is a lot of comedy here and a standout performance from Black that make this a great live action film similar in style to Jumanji or Hocus Pocus. Despite being principally aimed at a younger demographic, Goosebumps is definitely a film that can be enjoyed by all the family. By Hodei Lacey
Birdemic: Shock and Terror (2008) Finding this beauty on Youtube by accident proved a goldmine. At first it starts off relatively boring, and does not initially bear any of the hallmarks of a horrendously bad film. But then the dialogue starts, and this film which could have been an intelligent reimagining of the Birds descends into a spiral of shit. With the poorly CGI rendered birds which explode upon impact with the ground, the wooden acting and the obvious toy guns, it’s easy to split your side laughing. The massive flaws aside, the movie's message is actually about environmentalism. However, it’s just so painstakingly funny that the message goes over your head. Don’t forget to check out the equally as ‘good’ sequel, Birdemic 2: The Resurrection.
Plan 9 From Outer Space (1959) An old B-Movie from the master of shitaster, Ed Wood(see the Tim Burton Film), is on paper not a bad idea: Aliens from a distant planet arrive on earth and resurrect the dead, and chaos ensues. However, the shoddy execution leaves much to be desired. “Inspector Clay dead… murdered and somebody’s responsible”, utters one cop over a dead body . Really? You don’t say? Even worse has to be open narration with the atrocious mismatching of future and present tenses, and the dire attempt to sound formal coming off as plain cheesy. Glaring technical mistakes like the boom mike visible in various shots, replacing one of the actors half way through, and the tinfoil looking flying saucers, add to the movie’s hilarity.
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The Room (2003) Not to be confused with current Oscar nominated hit, starring Brie Larson, The Room is just bonkers. Tommy Wiseau had to be off his head when making this movie. Nonetheless it's actually very interesting to watch. Hell, I'm not even one bit surprised it has its own video game and novel. The massive cult classic compared to regularly as the Citizen Kane of bad movies, gives off the vibe off viewing something unique. My old college’s film club even runs occasional screenings. This is a testament to how much of a cinematic icon it has become. I will say no more, go and see this movie, and understand its legacy.
Troll 2 (1990) Spawning a documentary, countless memes and Youtube videos, Troll 2 is the icing on the cake in the bad movie genre. “They're eating her....and then they're going to eat me!......OH MY GOD!!!”Maybe it’s just those lines which earns Troll 2 its ‘stellar’ reputation, or just everything else about it. It comes as no real surprise when you hear the production story behind it. The actors were American, while the production team were made up of Italians who didn’t speak fluent English.The trouble began when the Italian Director demanded that the actors recite the script written in broken English, word for word. To make matters worse the producer cut corners by developing many of the film’s elements without investing money in them. For example, the musical score was composed entirely on a synthesiser, and used one musical theme for the entire film. To top it all off, despite the title, the film does not even feature trolls. Instead the audience is treated to Vegetarian Goblins who turn humans into vegetables so they can eat them. A genius concept indeed! If you don’t feel like watching this one, be sure to check out the famous lines above on Youtube.
Reefer Madness (1936) My God! Reefer Madness! Old movies have a reputation for the corny. Reefer Madness delivers in spades. Pseudoscience galore as the film suggests that all marijuana users will commit violent crime. The devil’s drug I suppose. A propaganda film made in the late 30s with the idea of stamping out marijuana use, it had the opposite effect. Now revered as a cult classic and considered by critics to be one of the worst films of all time, many marijuana advocates see this film as an accidental satire, which highlights the myths and exaggerations society has about using. It’s cheesy sentiment and outdated values add to the charm.
Classic Corner Title:Flame and Citron(2008) Director: Ole Christian Madsen Stars: Thure Lindhardt, Mads Mikkelsen, Stine Stengade and Christian Berkel The film follows two resistance fighters in Nazi occupied Denmark during World War Two. Thure Lindhardt plays Bent/Flame, so called because of his bright red hair, and Mads Mikkelsen plays Jorgen/Citron so called because he is the driver. As best friends, they love nothing more than killing Nazis together and disrupting their plans for Denmark. Everything is going well until Flame meets Ketty Selmer (Stengade). They fall in love and it transpires that she works as a courier, but who's side is she on? Flame cannot help but be suspicious as he comes across some confusing documents. Meanwhile Hoffman (Berkel), the head of the Gestapo, has arrived on the scene and Flame wants the green light to take him out. However his bosses constantly rebuff his attempts. His unhealthy pursuit of this dangerous and charismatic individual leads to a fiery conclusion. Thure Lindhardt, who you may recognise from Angels and Demons, gives a fantastic performance in the lead role as Flame the super cool, charismatic and stoical character in the face of danger. Unfortunately, I haven't seen him in any
other films of note. Mads Mikkelsen, who is by far the more famous of the two (Casino Royale, The Salvation and TVs Hannibal), gives a head turning performance as the perpetually sweaty, Jorgen. Struggling with his inner demons, including the break up of his marriage, he is a quiet, reserved individual who gets the job done with the minimum of fuss. Christian Berkel plays Hoffman and you may remember him from his roles in Downfall, Inglorious Basterds and Valkyrie. One of my favourite actors since I saw his turn as the compassionate doctor in Downfall, he plays a darker character here, but still retains some semblance of honour and respect for his opponents. Flame and Citron looks superb and they really captured the look of WW2 era Denmark, which makes for a beautiful setting and the whole film is shot in a really nice crisp style, which is very easy on the eyes. Full of explosions and realistic heart palpitating gun fights. it moves at a thrilling frenetic pace. The tale of Flame and Citron is a true story, so expect a mostly accurate account mixed with some 'alterations'. This isn't much of a surprise really, as most films based around fact are absolute nonsense. Thankfully someone made an effort here. The film is in Danish (some German), so expect subtitles throughout. Sit back and enjoy this modern, minor classic. By David Gerard Foley
Munich 1958: The Day Manchester United And Ireland Lost A Genius of The Game Pure M magazine
By Damien Mc Evoy
nyone that has been to Old Trafford will have noticed a plaque on the wall of the East stand in honour of the victims of the Munich air crash on February 6th 1958. Twenty-three people lost their lives, eight of them Manchester United players. There is also a Munich clock at the stadium stopped at 3:04, the time of the crash. While most fans of Manchester United nowadays were probably not even born when this tragedy occurred, you will still see youngsters and young adults among the hustle and bustle of match days outside Old Trafford, stop and pause at the plaque or clock. They reflect on the events that took place and try to comprehend the grief and sadness that must have surrounded the club at that time and the years following the tragedy.
As the 58th anniversary occurs, we once again remember those who died. Manchester United fans gathered outside Old Trafford under the memorial plaque to sing the ‘Flowers of Manchester’ on Tuesday last before the home game against Stoke City, the nearest home tie to the February 6th anniversary. Families of those killed in the disaster joined them. They also joined the fans at the game in which a giant surfer flag was passed around the stadium celebrating the Busby Babes and the fallen heroes. The ‘Flowers of Manchester’ was played over the public address system. Both teams wore black armbands and the united club flag flew at half mast. A second service will be held on February 6th at the time of the crash, as is tradition at the club. Eight of the 'Busby Babes' side died in the
crash as they made their way home from a European Cup tie in Belgrade. They were Roger Byrne, Mark Jones, Duncan Edwards, Tommy Taylor, Eddie Colman, David Pegg, Geoff Bent and Irishman Liam Whelan. They were among the twenty three people who perished that day, including eight journalists and three club officials. While many regard George Best or Roy Keane as the greatest Irish player ever for Manchester United, many would say Liam Whelan could have gone on to achieve great things in Manchester had he not lost his life so young. Liam Whelan’s death was not only felt in Manchester, but also in his hometown of Cabra, Dublin. Affectionately known as Billy Whelan, he was a promising footballer with a great career both at club level and International
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level when he died at the age of 22. Whelan was said to be a young genius of the game who never forgot his roots. Born on April 1st 1935, he went on to play for Dublin youth side Home Farm. It wasn't long before he caught the eye of famous Manchester United scout Billy Behan. He broke into the team at the tender age of 18, to be joined there two years later by Bobby Charlton. In his four seasons at Manchester United, Whelan made 98 first team appearances. He scored 52 goals in all competitions for the club. He played four times for the Republic of Ireland, but unfortunately failed to score for his beloved nation. He was United’s top goal scorer in the 1956/57 season, when his team won the old First Division championship. In the 1957/58 season, as First Division champions, Manchester United became the first English club to play in the European Cup, a competition that was dominated by Real Madrid, but held in low esteem by the English Football Association. They reached the quarterfinals, where they beat the Yugoslav champions, Red Star Belgrade, the second leg taking place in Serbia. The flight they took back to England stopped off for refuelling in Munich. While the passengers waited in the Munich terminal building snow began to fall heavily. Two take off attempts were aborted. The passengers were asked to disembark while minor repairs were carried out. Just before the plane took off for the third time, Whelan was overheard by one of the other passengers to remark nervously to one of his team-mates “Well, if this is the time, then I’m ready.” Tragically, it was the time. The tragedy was made even worse when not long after it emerged Whelan had asked Busby if it was possible to miss the trip and return home to Ireland as he often had done in the past with Busby’s permission. Unfortunately on this occasion Busby decided it would be best if he travelled to with team. That decision bore heavy with Busby in the aftermath of the crash, and he lived the rest of his life with that regret. Manager Matt Busby recalled years afterwards that "had he been spared, he would have been one of the greatest players of all time". Albert Scanlon, a Busby Babe and himself a Munich survivor said of Whelan: "Billy was a magician with a ball at his feet. I really don't think he knew how good he was and how much better he could have become. A world-class forward. There is no doubt about that. His vision and passing was sheer class.”
Whelan’s funeral in Dublin, one week after the crash was one of the biggest Dublin has ever seen. It drew an estimated crowd of 20,000 to Cabra. In 2006 the railway bridge in Cabra was named after him. He used to cross that bridge on a daily basis as a young boy. Former teammate Bobby Charlton came to Dublin for the unveiling of the plague on the bridge alongside Whelan’s family. Charlton himself survived that fateful day. He went on to both club and International success, Whelan’s family and fans were left to wonder what might have been for Billy. An Post commemorated the 50th anniversary by launching a specially designed stamp featuring Whelan's image and that of the Munich Memorial Clock at Old Trafford The events of the 6th of February 1958 define the club more than any trophy it has won in its history. Manchester United fans
are united across the world on February the 6th each year. The events on that day are deep rooted in the club and are the foundation for the success the club has had since and will be in the future. Legends at the club like George Best, Bobby Charlton, Ryan Giggs, Cristiano Ronaldo among many more will go down in the history books for what they achieved at the club. Liam Whelan and his seven teammates who perished will never be forgotten at Manchester United as they lost their lives playing a game they loved, for a club they loved. It is impossible to know what the club would have achieved had the disaster not occurred. What is for sure that on the day, Manchester United not only lost Liam Whelan, Ireland lost a promising star that would have gone on to make a name for himself in the football world rather than be remembered as a victim of tragedy.
William Augustine Whelan, also known as Billy Whelan or Liam Whelan 1935-1958
Statistical Analysis is the Future of Sport, We Can't be Left Behind! Pure M magazine
By Barry Kearney
avey O’Brien, a graduate in Human and Health Performance and a coach at Shelbourne Ladies, sits down with Pure M to discuss how he and his colleagues are pioneering a movement within Irish football. Shelbourne Ladies are attempting to introduce statistical analysis into everyday training and match-play. This use of Sport Science is not something new, but it's an area of sport in which the Irish game is falling way behind the rest of the world. Davey outlines to Barry Kearney the huge progress he anticipates the statistical analysis movement will bring to Irish sport, and argues that Irish football will be left in isolation unless clubs receive the funding required to match their European counterparts. So Davey, what’s so special about this movement? Well, the software is brand-new to Shelbourne Ladies, and we are one of the very few Irish clubs, men’s or women’s, to use statistical analysis to develop our football. Clubs at many levels across Europe use it, but we are behind them all.
How exactly does the software work, and how does it benefit the club? We record the players in the gym and then on the pitch. The software tracks the
player’s movements and we receive literally hundreds of stats on their performance. On a Monday morning, I meet up with the doctor and the manager, and we analyse the data, and then design player specific programmes aimed at developing their weaknesses. Secondly, we then use the data to analyse the teams structure, the formation, and how to design drills using T-G-F-U (Teaching Games From Understanding). These training exercises are key to the team’s development. The intention is to use the software to simulate actual game play in training. Training drills, like we once knew them, are dead. T-G-F-U is the future. There’s no point in having a shooting drill with no pressure being placed on the forward, that doesn't happen in reality.
What are the key indicators that you are looking for in the data? When we are in the gym, we are looking at the anaerobic system, which is basically the strengthening and condition of the individual. The software gives very detailed information on their form, what they are doing well and what they could do better. When we watch the match, we want to see what the teams shape is like, what people are doing with the ball and what people are doing without the ball.
The stats need to be sport specific. That’s the key. If you turn on any major football match, the commentator will say “Look he ran 10km in seventy minutes!”. That information is useless without context. Mo Farah could run that every day of his life, but he probably wouldn't contribute too much in the match itself. With that in mind, how best can you and the manager use the data to your advantage? I watched a session at another club two weeks ago. I saw a men’s team run flat-out for ninety-seconds. Now, that will almost never happen in an actual game-play scenario. You don’t run for thirty seconds
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at full-speed, never-mind ninety seconds. We can tell that from the data. The technology only adds to the manager’s role. He needs to work with his stats team, his doctor, and his coaches to develop a programme that improves the team. He needs to utilise the stats, decide what training will be sport specific, and use T-G-F-U. If we do that, we can have an amateur game, with professional standards. We can then compete with the rest of Europe. Are there any negative aspects about moving sport in the direction of statistical analysis? I suppose, if you look at the goalkeeper,
it’s an isolated position. It doesn't tell us all that much about their performances. As for the defence, the software records things that happen, defences stop things from happening. Paolo Maldini, a great defender, did that by his positioning, not by tackling or heading. So his stats would be average on the software, but we can still track his movement, and that would show us how well he read the game. As for all other positions on the pitch, the software gives us a very good indication of their performance. You currently use the data to record players in the gym and on the pitch. Do you have plans to use it in other areas?
We can use it to record our opponents. If you can see where they are weak, you can exploit that area. If their right back drifts forward too often, you can overload or suck him in. It can win you matches. We could also use it to recruit players. The data can tell you a lot about a player before you get him or her in for a training session. It could be very cost-effective. It’s an interesting avenue. What we need is funding. It’s very limited. You need to be able to compete. There’s only one course in Ireland that is based around sports statistical analysis, and it’s part-time. This is the future, the FAI need to get on board now, or else we’ll never recover.
Guardiola Can Bring Manchester City To The Next Level
Pure M magazine
By Damien Mc Evoy
ep Guardiola and Manchester City have confirmed what many now claim they already knew- that he will be coming to Manchester in the summer. This is bad news for Manchester United and their fans, for as things stand, Manchester is most definitely blue and now have everything in place to push on to the next level. In early 2008, the club was in a financially precarious position. Thaksin Shinawatra was in control and the future did not look promising. That August saw the club taken over by an Abu Dhabi United group. It wasn't long before City broke the British transfer record with the £32.5 million signing of Robinho from Real Madrid. City had made a strong statement- they had arrived to the party and the Premier League dominance between Manchester United and Chelsea now had a new challenger with plenty of cash to back up their ambitions. It wasn't long before Manchester City won their first ever Premier league title in the 2011/12 season, followed by another in 2013/14. City have bigger ambitions however, and the lack of success in the Champions League has brought Pep Guardiola to Eastlands in the hope he can bring them to the next level and help them build on the worldwide fan base that success in Europe can bring. Manchester City have a manager coming in who has won 19 of the 3o trophies he has contested. That's not including what he will undoubtedly go on to achieve with Bayern Munich during the remainder of his contract with the club. City are also getting a manager who can attract the top names to the club.This will, no doubt, increase attendances and bring them to the level of Manchester United or Liverpool in terms of fan base and demand for tickets. It is possible that they could break the world transfer record to get a player of the standard of Gareth Bale or Robert Lewandowski, even though their squad is already among the best in the league, if not Europe. They also have their expanded stadium, which sometimes draws criticism from opposing fans who point to the fact that they have empty seats on match days. City have everything in place to progress
to the next level now that Guardiola is on his way. The Champions League is the dream for Manchester City officials and this summer will see investment in the squad at the request of Guardiola to achieve this goal. Meanwhile across the city, Manchester United have spent over £3oo million in the past few transfer windows, yet are going backwards. Louis Van Gaal continues to give the board every chance to sack him, yet for some unknown reason, he remains in place. Old Trafford is going through a transformation that the fans and the board are struggling to handle. United need to look to their neighbours to learn how to progress. They are still talking about Sir Alex Ferguson and the ‘Manchester United way’. It is hard to get away from that when
Sir Alex is in the crowd every week with the cameras in his face. David Moyes got criticised for saying United should aspire to be like City after they had lost the derby to them, but Moyes may have had a point. City have Manuel Pellegrini in place, who has won honours for the club and has every chance of adding to that haul this season, with the Premier League, Champions League and FA Cup all realistic targets- not to mention the league cup final at the end of the month. The club has no reason to replace him. However, they saw the opportunity to show ambition when Guardiola became available and jumped at the chance to progress for the good of their future. Manchester United meanwhile continues on with a manager they know is definitely leaving in the summer of 2017, and have
Pure M magazine done since the day he signed. They were caught cold when Sir Alex departed. They had no plan in place. Most of their targets had already agreed their futures elsewhere months previous, so they went for what they thought was ‘like for like’ and appointed David Moyes. Liverpool have shown ambition in going after Jurgen Klopp and are succeeding. Manchester City have done the same with Guardiola. Carlo Ancelotti has had enough of waiting around and he is off to Munich in the summer. Will United continue with Van Gaal for another season against the rising discontent among the fans? Even if Van Gaal won the FA Cup and secured 4th spot to ensure Champions League football, it would not be enough to keep his job if the vast majority of United fans had their way. Manchester United need to open their eyes and see Jose Mourinho is the only available big name manager out there who can stop them being left in Manchester City’s dust as they race ahead. The club can play it safe by appointing a Ryan Giggs or a Mark Hughes and continue to try following the Ferguson pattern, a tactic that probably won’t work. United and its fans need to move with the times and forget about the ‘Manchester United way’. They need to find a new way, possibly under Mourinho’s guidance. This does not have to be a total change of style in terms of United history, but they need to find a way to progress without continued talk of previous ways. It seems that Mourinho is not everyone’s cup of tea at the club, or among certain sections of the fans. However, few can deny that he is the only man who can take on Guardiola next season, or Klopp (given time and money, he can surely reach the heights with Liverpool that Brendan
Rodgers came so close to reaching). United need to aspire to be like their city rivals and show some intent. They can do this by securing the services of Mourinho. Even if it is to say he will take the reigns in the summer, like the announcement today at City, it will ease the pressure on the current manager, excite the fans, and ensure United are a club that top players will want to join again. If United show no ambition and keep things as they are, they will be left behind by their closest rivals, and when Van Gaal retires in 2017, United will be searching for a new boss with little options available to them just like they were in 2013. Chelsea too are going through their own transformation with the sacking of Jose Mourinho. They have missed out on Pep Guardiola too, and with the departure and the end of the season of long standing captain, John Terry, Chelsea have a rebuilding job of their own this summer. Terry's departure follows that of influential
figures at the club such as Didier Drogba, Frank Lampard, Ashley Cole and Peter Cech, who have all been allowed to leave Chelsea over the past two seasons without much ceremony. Chelsea, like United, have lost key players in their teams that, as they are finding out, are quite hard to replace. After the loss of Steven Gerrard and Luis Suarez, Liverpool too look a different side and will not be a major force in the league until they can adjust to the system new manager Jurgen Klopp has in place. Klopp has to be allowed to get his own players in and more importantly, be given time. The one advantage Liverpool have over Manchester United and Chelsea is they have the right man in charge, and while United and Chelsea continue to search for their next manager, Liverpool are ahead of them plotting transfers for next season. Arsenal are probably the closest challengers to Manchester City and Pep Guardiola next season. If Leicester City don't manage to win the league this season, the title will be going to City or Arsenal. Arsenal are one or two signings away from having a squad capable of challenging City. Arsene Wenger is going into his 20th season at the club, and despite the lack of success in the league in recent seasons, with the acquisition of a few key signings they will be Guardiola's nearest challengers over the next few seasons. Arsenal have to get a run of consistency going as they are likely to go on a bad run at any moment, fading away when the chance for success is within distance. Manchester United, Liverpool and Chelsea have rebuilding to do. Manchester City, with Guardiola in place and with one or two key signings, will go on to control the Premier League while the rest try and play catch up. Manchester is blue, and it won't be long before City are a formidable side in Europe.
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An Assault On Gamers
o far 2016 looks like it's going to be a very interesting year for gamers with Mass Effect : Andromeda, Gears 4 and Uncharted 4 along with a whole host of others seemingly scheduled games for release this year. As exciting as it all is, I implore you, please DON'T pre-order. Pre-ordering games is a very dangerous business practice and by playing into the hands of the games publishers, you are telling them "Yes, please take my money before I play the game." If a company like EA or Ubisoft are able to make the sale to a customer before the game has been released or even finished, they are more than likely going to remember that for the next game they release and end up lying to consumers when it comes to gameplay reveals. This has happened numerous times and yet people still don't take heed of the fact that they are unknowingly supporting this type of business. Maybe people remember the hype surrounding Watchdogs? It shocked everyone with its incredible gameplay reveal at E3 2012, which led to it being many people's game of the show. It was incredible at first, the graphics were unlike anything available at the time, with the promise of a deep hacking system with numerous ways to complete objectives and a life breathing world the likes of which we'd never seen before. But then it came out. Following a couple of delays and gameplay videos that got less and less impressive in the lead up to launch, the game was released to a collective "meh". The game was buggy, the world was lifeless, the story was mediocre and the graphics were clearly downgraded. Which was proved by hidden files in the PC version which were graphical settings used only for showing at E3. Many people who pre-ordered the game were blindsided by hype and pre-ordered without question, in fear that they would be sold out or they wouldn't be able to play it on release. Fortunately, I didn't bother pre-ordering the game, as I lost interest the more I saw of it during press conferences and reveals.
I have been lucky not to be stung by preordering as it's a practice I don't usually indulge in. Publishers have been trying to fool gamers into pre-ordering games for a long time, everyone knows how bad Aliens Colonial Marines is, but many forget that everybody was hyped for that game after the big E3 reveal gave us a vertical slice of the Aliens that made people's jaws drop to the floor. Then we learned it was an abominable mess that deserves to be buried in the New Mexico desert alongside E.T on the Atari 2600. These vertical slices are basically a portion of the game that has been finished and then is edited with graphical tweaks and even additional gameplay options that aren't in the final game. When Metal Gear Solid 2 was first shown, there were segments that had you playing as Snake, yet by the final version of the game, players found out that they would be playing as Raiden during those segments instead which left people not very happy. (They are still not very happy.) So why are people still pre-ordering? This shady trend by publishers has led to some ridiculous new strategies, such as Deus Ex : Mankind Divided being panned by gamers over their outrageous 'Tier
System', where the more people you can convince to pre-order unlocks special gifts and items, with the top tier unlockable being that you get your game a few days early. While the possibility of getting a copy before release is tempting, we should really start to think with our wallets and become informed consumers. It's not as if games will be sold out day one, especially now that digital sales are making up a large part of the market. Why not wait for a review or try it out before you buy it? I'm sure you wouldn't want to end up like a couple of my friends who pre-ordered Watchdogs for â‚Ź70.00 only for it to sit on the shelf collecting dust after they got bored of hacking the bank accounts of cancer patients and changing traffic lights. (Exciting stuff for a vigilante.) Anyway, with the trend of massive day one patches to make the game even mildly playable, I wouldn't be rushing it out to grab my copy of the Division only to find it crashes quicker than Konami's integrity. So please, don't end up supporting these dishonest business practices, don't support mediocrity, become an informed customer and not a disgruntled gamer. By Ciaran Curran
50 Ways To... Rant Your Way to a Review
Pure M magazine
Weekly column by Culture Editor James Dunne
n my first column a few weeks ago, I indulged in a bit of a moan about some aspects of social media that really annoy me. Rest assured, this was just a small selection of everyday things that get my goat, but if I were to sit down and write a complete list of everything that really annoyed me, it would only achieve two things. Firstly, the readers of this column (all two of you, thanks Mam and Dad) would be bored out of their minds, and would probably think of me as a pretty horrible and petty person. Secondly, I'd absolutely ruin my own day by reminding myself of all the things that irritate me, and I'd end up irritating myself. But for the sake of the book I've read this week, I feel that I need to bring up another regular nuisance that has me grinding my teeth as I flick through my phone every morning on the Luas. And it's only one, solitary word... "Wanderlust" My main problem with this word is that, for some reason, everyone seems obliged to use it when talking about all the travelling they're going to do, all the once in a lifetime experiences their going to have, all the orphans they're going to help, etc... once they get out of the rat race. Cue the summer, and there they are on a two week bender in Salou. Nothing wrong with it might I add, but it's not exactly breaking out of the comfort zone. Worse still, they could be getting their picture taken with a poor tiger that's been tranquilised half to death in some hell-hole park in SouthEast Asia, the only semi-cultural thing they've done apart from drink buckets of vodka on a beach and vomit all over the local flora and fauna. It's a vacuous term, it doesn't mean that you'd like to go travelling somewhere new and exciting, it means that you like the idea of other people thinking you'd like to go travelling somewhere new and exciting. Sure, we'd all like to be on some tropical beach instead of commuting to work when there's icicles pissing out of the sky, but plastering 'wanderlust' across stock images nicked from someone else's Instagram does not make you some sort of alternative child of the road. Go and do it, come back, and then you can post all the lovely pictures of you being spontaneous and adventurous for me to complain about instead. And somehow, this rant brings me in a hugely roundabout way back to this week's book, Jack Kerouac's On the Road. This book has always been a bit of an elephant in the literary room for me; a book I've been getting around to reading for the past eight or nine years. On the Road is one of those novels that has a reputation that precedes itself, a book that more people talk about than actually read. Kerouac was the original hipster, the voice of the post-war beat generation and that rare breed of human who can take gargantuan amounts of drugs and alcohol and still produce something creative, instead of just soiling themselves (although I wouldn't rule out the possibility of that too). Most readers are aware of how Kerouac wrote the book, spewing his Benzedrine-fuelled notions on to various notebooks and scraps of paper as he traversed North America.
Some know that he eventually wrote the first proper draft in three weeks, typing like a manic onto a continuous 120-foot scroll of tracing paper, devoid of any unnecessary grammatical considerations, margins, or indeed paragraph breaks. All know is that it's a book about travel, but definitely not the kind we've become accustomed to today. And for any fresh faced graduates intent on packing up their notebook and conquering the great unknown, On the Road is a must. Not only will it make you look super hip with it's retro orange Penguin cover and exotic-sounding author, but it will actually prepare you for some of the grim realities of the road. The phrase that has recently become the bane of my life my well have been first coined by protagonist Sal Paradise, as he rarely settles back in his aunt's apartment in New York for any considerable length of time before he craves life on the road again. But unlike our modern day 'wanderluster-ers', he actually goes. And this isn't a road of economy class Emirates flights and orthopaedic backpacks. This is hitch-hiking through the dreary plains and nowhere towns of middle-America, clinging on to the back of speeding trucks with hobos and head-cases, labouring in cotton fields and policing drunken marines to scrounge enough money to eat, embarking on wild and illicit romances that peter out as fast as your money and your friends. Ok, the last one might still be relevant to modern-day travelling, but following Sal's journey across the "groaning, awful continent" of North America is certainly no Thompson Holidays advertisement. For every great night out and every landscape that catches their breath in their throat, there's moments of hunger, hopelessness, and utter destitution as the fickle nature of life and love on the road always lingers just beneath the surface. Kerouac's relentless and spontaneous prose injects you with a certain type of energy at times; the type that makes you want to call your boss and resign before bursting out on the open road. But it never lasts long. Dean Moriarty, the unpredictable and undependable gentleman of the road, loses his devious shine as soon as you begin to see the pathetic life his addiction to movement has brought him. The thrill of the journey has consumed him. His constant search for 'IT', that most elusive experience that always manages to stay a state-line ahead of him, leaves him a broken and dejected shadow by novel's end, repelling all chances of consistency offered to him for a life on the road. Kerouac's stream-of-consciousness may be hard to follow by times, and the language slightly outdated, but On the Road was groundbreaking on it's release over half a century ago, and still demands reverence for it's originality. It's fast-paced, sweaty, and confusing- the perfect allegory for the true experience of travelling. More so than an Instagram photo anyway. Next week, it's my first non-fiction, with the hugely divisive The Muslims Are Coming by Arun Kundnani. This should be an interesting one!
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About the Author
Katherine Stansfield By Rachel Casey
‘Love story, ghost story, a story rooted in real historical events and places,’ is how Katherine Stansfield describes her debut novel, The Visitor (2013). A poignant love story that weaves through the past and present, it shows the importance that a setting can make to a novel. Based in the fictional town of Morlanow on the coast of Cornwall, the setting is just as important as the characters themselves. Through beautiful descriptions and vivid images, the coastal town almost becomes a character in itself. "A sense of place is essential for my fiction writing," she admits, "it's often what sets my ideas going in the first place." Having been raised in Cornwall, it’s not difficult to see the influence it had on the book. The descriptions of the small fishing village make you feel as if you are there, experiencing the smells of the sea and the feel of the water bobbing around you as you swim with Pearl. Stansfield likens the shoals of pilchards to "a woman, swimming and slicing through the sea" and you can picture their movements, circling in the water. "The story is the product of my imagination and my interest in Cornwall and Cornish history," Stansfield says. "History always gets me thinking about new ideas for stories, but often just small details which can be the most richly rewarding starting points." The movement from the thriving pilchard fishers of Morlanow bay in the 19th century, to the 1930s, when the fish have dried up and the town is turning to tourism as a means to survive, is the starting point of this story. Pearl, a lifelong resident of Morlanow, attempts to come to terms with the changes in the village as a young girl. As an older woman, married and having to move due to the rising tourist trade, the past infiltrates her already deteriorating mind and brings back old heartache through the ghostly memories of an old love. "[The novel] started life as a response to witnessing, first hand, the effect of dementia on a family member," Stansfield tells me. "My great-aunt started to experience
Photo by Keith Morris
problems with her memory, the world around her, her present disintegrated and she was convinced she was living in a version of her past. She woke up one morning convulsed with grief because she believed her mother had just died. To tell someone that what they're feeling isn't strictly true, that their mother had died more than fifty years beforehand, is cruel, in all sorts of unintended ways, because for my great-aunt her grief was real. Who was I to say that what she felt was 'inaccurate'? That question of accuracy, of a slippage between past and present, and the power of our own beliefs over the reality we face in daily life shaped the themes of the novel." Pearl becomes obsessed with her memories and refuses to believe in the present, maintaining that her past love is coming back to her. Her state of mind
means she holds back information from the reader. Concealment devices like this are a large part of Stansfield’s fiction. "I love unreliable narrators," she tells me. Stansfield’s poetry differs from her fiction in that it’s not quite as dark and has more ordinary themes, though looks at them in perhaps a more satirical way. "My poems are often funny and surreal, with a frankness of approach,"she says. Her first book of poetry, Playing House, was published in 2014. Poems such as My Dental Hygienist and I Listen to Radio 2 and Bleach describe mundane, everyday tasks, but with an undertone of wit and drama. When writing The Visitor, she came to realise that she couldn’t write fiction and poetry at the same time because of these differences in theme and voice, which affects her writing life as well. "With poems everything tends to get a bit
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My poems are often funny and surreal, with a frankness of approach...
to avoid reading them now", although she admits that they are a great way to raise awareness of a newly published book. She also hails the use of Twitter as an indispensable tool for the new writer, "it's a fantastic place to 'meet' other writers as well as editors, agents, book bloggers, booksellers, all of whom make up the publishing industry. It has surprised me just how generous people are with advice and support online." When asked what advice she herself would give to any aspiring writers she recommends to "keep redrafting, keep trying new things, keep reading, and know that while things don't always happen quickly, they do happen." She is currently keeping busy working on a few different projects, both fiction and poetry. A fantasy novel which she is writing with her partner, "a very interesting experience, and not without rows!" a travel memoir which is "a kind of hybrid prose-poetry text, quite experimental in nature" most of a second book of poems and a novel about a Victorian pioneer of photography, all of which are bound to be as unique and exciting as her previous work. The Visitor is available from Parthian Books (www.parthianbooks.com)
Playing House is available from Seren Books (www.serenbooks.com)
You can follow Katherine Stansfield on Twitter @K_Stansfield (where she admittedly posts too many pictures of cats)
frenetic: I race about doing lots of exercise, meeting people, going to events, cleaning the fridge, and the writing happens in between those things with the necessary intensity. With fiction I tend to hide myself away, spending long days at the desk that slowly build up to a big push." But reading is something she does regardless, "I try to read widely, usually moving between fiction, non-fiction and poetry, but if I’m working on a particular project then I ‘bulk up’ on reading whatever it is I’m writing, so if I’m writing poems then I’ll read more poetry: contemporary, older material, poet biographies, critical guides anything, really." She credits her love of reading to helping her want to become a writer in the first place, "I've always been a voracious reader, and if you love books then it's not a big leap
to want to write one yourself and see your name on the cover." The post-publishing period of being a writer is something that Stansfield is still getting to grips with. "As an author you're expected to be involved in promoting your work beyond just being able to talk about it. You have to take responsibility for raising your profile, which requires a whole other set of skills than just being able to write a good poem! For both books I organised launches in my home town, in addition to the events the publisher arranged." She admits to still finding reviews quite hard, trying to balance the terror of getting a book reviewed with the disappointment of not getting it reviewed. "I’ve realised that I tend to focus on the negative parts of reviews too heavily which really knocks my confidence so I’m trying
Daughter of Smoke and Bone Trilogy Pure M magazine
he Daughter of Smoke and Bone trilogy by Laini Taylor begins as an urban fantasy series that suddenly switches to a fantastical world of epic proportions. Daughter of Smoke and Bone, the first book, begins in Prague following a young art student with blue hair. It soon becomes clear that blue hair is not the only unusual aspect of Karou’s character. Karou is often sent on errands for Brimstone, the demon who has been a father-like figure in her life. Brimstone’s errands generally include collecting teeth from and delivering wishes to unsavoury characters. It is not until Brimstone and his kind are threatened by an ancient enemy that Karou must chose whether she pledges allegiance to the human world or somewhere else entirely. This book was intriguing from the first page. The constant hint towards secrets kept by all the characters is captivating. The characters in this book are incredibly witty. Their sarcasm and banter is entertaining and lightens even the darkest and most intense passages of the book. The demons, or chimera as they are called in this trilogy, have real substance and history as characters. The setting is simply beautiful. The city of Prague is shown through the eyes of artistic characters and will inspire anyone reading to travel to it immediately. The fantastic worlds also described in this series are beautifully described and sculpted as well. Laini Taylor’s writing style is humorous as well as poetic. This book ends on a cliff-hanger that will have any reader wishing for the next book
immediately. Days of Blood and Starlight, the second book in the trilogy, is set, for the majority of the book, in an elaborately detailed fantasy world. The characters in this second novel are as diverse and entertaining as those in the first. The side-characters are equally witty and endearing. This second book was a little slower in terms of pacing of the plot. It took longer than the first to really begin and become engaging. However, once the plot really began it became as thrilling as the first book. There are so many twist that the reader can never guess what will happen next. The writing in this book is also beautiful, the descriptions, humour, and dialogue come together to create beautifully vivid worlds. Dreams of Gods and Monsters, the last novel in the trilogy, has more unsavoury, cunning, spiteful characters introduced as well as more endearing, benevolent ones. This concluding novel is as action packed as the first two books. It is a very satisfying ending to the story with all the lose ends tied up. There are many plot twist that had me reading sitting at the edge of my seat, (figuratively) biting my nails, and, at some points, close to tears. The Daughter of Smoke and Bone trilogy is a beautifully written fantasy series that focuses on war, self-identity and love. If you enjoy reading about other worlds, with characters that you love, or at least love to hate, then you will love the Daughter of Smoke and Bone trilogy. By Emma Fagan
he Wolf Wilder by Katherine Rundell is a beautiful book set in Russia around the time of the Russian Revolution. It tells the story of Feo, a young girl who’s grown up teaching wolves how to survive in the wild, and the journey she goes on to rescue her mother from the Tsar’s soldiers. Feo has lived with her mother and the wolves all her life, with little other human interaction. When the soldiers come and warn her mother against continuing her work as a wolf wilder, Feo doesn’t understand the danger her family is in. However, she learns quickly when the soldiers return and take away her mother, burning down her house in the process. She goes on the run from the army, along with a wolf pup and Black, White, and Grey; three wolves she’s known almost all her life. Feo is determined to be reunited with her mother, and along with a young runaway soldier called Ilya and the wolves, she travels through the Russian forests and villages. Everyone has a story to tell about the soldiers’ ruthlessness, especially General Rakov’s. He takes Feo’s actions personally not only has she defiantly ignored his orders, but she left him blind in one eye after he attempted to take her away with her mother. With the help of Ilya, who dreams of becoming a dancer and ran away from the army after he helps Feo take care of a new born wolf, she is determined to rescue her mother from the jail in St. Petersburg. As they travel, they meet villagers who tell stories of young men shot or conscripted into the army, of starving children, and of villages divided between those who want to fight back and those who are terrified of making things worse. The Wolf Wilder is a simple story suited to younger readers, but it’s a beautiful book of bravery, love, and companionship, with stunning illustrations scattered throughout the book. A heartwarming, original, tale, it’s a pleasure to read for people of any age. By Aisling Murphy
Fine Art vs Art
Pure M magazine
By Shana Beth Mason
had a rather interesting Twitter exchange with The Guardian's chief art critic Adrian Searle last week. As I scrolled through his feed, I noticed this: "'Fine Art' my arse. Cannot bear the phrase though I am encumbered with a degree in it." I replied, "Art may be collectively called 'fine', but not all 'finery' is art (one cancels the other. No harm, no foul, right?)" To my astonishment, he responded! I consider it rare that a senior critic would engage with a younger writer in even a semi-meaningful, respectful way. He said, "It's that Wallace & Gromit antique-dealer rictus when people say 'fine art' or 'very fine' that gets me." The distinction between "fine" art and "art" seems so deeply impressed in the public's mind in the UK, Ireland, and Europe. In the US (anywhere outside of New York or a self-contained art institution), "art" primarily refers to anything on a canvas; even a gicleĂŠ of the family dog may appear in a shop window and be branded as "fine art". If I believe that a canvas bearing an image of my black Labrador (I called him Jasper Johns) is beautiful and I could, hypothetically, defend its historic and/or aesthetic value, does my occupation as an arts critic automatically entitle me to designate it as "art" over anyone else? It gets tricky. Consider Michelangelo's 'David' (1504). Anyone in the world could look at the sculpture (or an image of it) and immediately associate it with the words
"fine art". During the 1500's in Italy, there were startlingly few sculptural objects that were created solely for decorative purposes. A sculpture was either made as an object of tribute or a subtle, physical allegory commenting on either its subject or its own maker. 'David' was initially created as one of twelve giant characters from the Old Testament to occupy the buttresses of the Cattedrale di Santa Maria del Fiore (Cathedral of Saint Mary of the Flower) in Florence. It was made to be seen from a great distance away, as an
Michelangelo, 'David' (1504), Marble, 5.17' (m), Image credit: www.accademia.org
imposing figure guarding the Holy Church. Whether or not it was a physically beautiful thing did not matter as much as why it was made, at all. By that logic, 'David' was a utilitarian object rather than the manifestation of the artist's muse(s). If you asked me to critique 'David' as a work of art, I would easily categorise it as an exemplary sculptural work by a very young Michelangelo who, incidentally, felt that marble was a higher form of art than painting. But in 1504, there were no professional "critics" other than philosophers or biographers, whose opinions were accepted as fact versus open dialogue. Even then, the only individuals who were permitted to critique anything at all in the presence of artists were their own patrons, aristocracy, or the Catholic Church. The term "fine art" has no traceable origin, and certainly "very fine" would be more indicative of the taste of its speaker versus an objective assessment of the object's aesthetic value - although "very fine" may also be referring to the object being incredibly expensive or rare. That's a whole other academic discussion that I won't bore you with, but I'll leave you with this thought: the next time you look at a painting in a traditional museum and then look at another in a contemporary gallery, ask yourself the same question that the Devil asked Adam (from Rudyard Kipling's 1890 poem 'Conundrum of the Workshops')... "It's pretty, but is it Art?" Ultimately, you decide.
Published on Feb 8, 2016
It's Monday and our weekly Pure M magazine is out. We have some exclusive interviews in this issue for you, from music, sport to books, we g...