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TWO FEATURES//INTERVIEWS//OPINION//REVIEWS

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SHOOT ISSUE 4 20TH NOVEMBER 2012

TO

THRILL


CONTENTS

“They don’t have pussies, they don’t have nipples, they don’t smoke, they don’t drink, they don’t do anything --- that is how the American public sees American women ...” - Photographer Helmut Newton // 20

4 24 26 27 28 37 38

OPENERS HOMEGROWN THE ODD COUPLE THE CITYGUIDE FACES UNTIL NEXT TIME THE FINAL SAY

THE REVIEWS

THE FEATURES

THE REGULARS 8 10 11 12 15 16 18 20

CONSOLING DEATH DEAD MOUSE GIRLS ON HOP ENGLISH ROSE DIRECTOR’S CUT SWEET THESPIANS MANUSCRIPTS BURN A GUN FOR HIRE

30 31 32 33 33 34 34 35 35 35

FOOD FILM MUSIC GAMES LITERATURE STAGE TECHNOLOGY FILM FOOD GAMES

Editor & Creative Director Aaron Devine Deputy Editor Henry Longden Copy Editor Eoin Tierney Online Editor Ciar Boyle-Gifford Editorial Staff Gabija Purlytė // Tom Lenihan // Deirdre Molumby // Declan Johnston // Paige Crosbie // Hugo Fitzpatrick // Paul Casey Alison Connolly // Jenny Duffy // Gheorghe Rusu // Alana Ryan // Katherine Murphy // Fionnuala Gygax Isabella Davey // Ciaran McGrath // Claudia Carroll Photo Editor Matthew Wilson Illustrator Alice Wilson Creative Consultants Dargan Crowley-Long // Éna Brennan Special Thanks Damien Carr, Matthew Taylor and the Trinity Publications Committee // Gabriel Beecham // Attie Papas // Robert at Maconochie Photography // June Newton // Ronan Burtenshaw // Nora Eastwood // Nell Roddy at Element Pictures // Staff at EPB Department of Trinity College Library for their ongoing support

TN2MAGAZINE.IE // 3


OPENERS

THE SUNSET OF MODERNISM DESIGN In the immediate neighbourhood of James Gandon’s Custom House and Busáras, by the firm of Michael Scott, stands a building complex which is not nearly as iconic, but aesthetically holds its own alongside these Dublin celebrities. Built between 1975-80, the Irish Life Centre, on Lower Abbey Street, is a mixed-purpose development consisting of blocks of various heights arranged around street-level and raised courtyards, with a large landscaped garden at its heart. Though obviously Modernist in style, the buildings follow classical principles of design, with a ground-floor arcade, equal strips of glazing and brick panels above giving a vertical emphasis and uniting

minating the tripartite scheme. Though simple rectangular volumes and strong clear horizontals and verticals dominate the overall impression, there are hardly any sharp angles to be seen, with rounded corners giving the buildings a surprising elegance and grace. The bush-hammered concrete, brick and mirrored glass are all simple industrial materials championed by the modernists, and when combined here with the wonderful plasticity of lines, their natural charm is revealled beautifully. If you are still not convinced, use a visit to see the sculpture Chariot of Life by Oisín Kelly in the plaza at the front of the Irish Life Centre as a pretext to find yourself there at the time around sunset, when the even-

the levels like an applied order ing light tints the windows in a (ie the classical system of col- fantastic, warm shade of aged umn and entablature), and a gold. Gabija Purlytė copper-clad mansard roof ter-

“A NEW SOURCE OF MUSICAL DELIGHT”

LITERATURE This volume, compiled by Bunting, was the first collection of Irish airs. It contains both ancient tunes and many airs by popular Irish harper and composer Turlough Carolan (1670–1738). Over 100 of his tunes are known, and this is believed to be only a fragment of his repertoire. Bunting comments that such is Carolan’s skill in “every stile of Music . . . that we can scarcely know to which of them his genius was best adapted.” Carolan’s Concerto, a piece that shows the influence of Baroque music on his work and is considered a masterpiece by harpers, is featured in this collection along with several of his other tunes. Originally there were lyrics to Carolan’s airs, but it is the music that has endured.

This was the main goal of Bunting’s collection, to preserve Irish music for future generations. As much Irish music is learnt by ear, this written record of music is crucial. Bunting collected the tunes at a gathering of harpers in Belfast in 1792 and this volume, A General Collection of the Ancient Irish Music, was published in 1796. Bunting was instructed not to add a note to the tunes he heard at the festival, and so the collection is not a perfect one. There are errors in the tunes, but that does not detract from the importance of this volume – both musically and historically. This book can be found and explored in the Early Printed Books Department of TCD Library. Jenny Duffy

LORD OF THE FLIES FILM “Be afraid. Be very afraid.” It’s the classic tagline to The Fly, the classic 1986 sci-fi horror film which has entered the vernacular of pop culture. But the Polish version of the film poster displayed here instead relies more on the visual. It’s a strange representation of a movie which has been seen as a metaphor for the AIDS epidemic. Rather than drawing on Jeff Goldblum and his powerhouse performance, the poster depicts what looks like a hung-over fly that has yet to shave. Though it may be a reasonable teaser for one of the film’s more creative scenes, one may wonder how a picture of a fly-monster vomiting ever helped sell a cinema ticket. 4 // TN2MAGAZINE.IE

Containing shades of Kafka’s Metamorphosis, the film became a big breakthrough for David Cronenberg. The Canadian director’s repertoire contains themes concerning death and the aging process, both of which are expressed to their fullest and most disturbing here. Employing substantial special effects and makeup, which would take up to five hours to apply to Goldblum, the story is part body-horror-action and part tragic-romance. It has spawned a legendary Simpsons parody episode and has been made into an opera by the film’s esteemed composer Howard Shore. This shouldn’t be merely swatted away . . . Tom Lenihan


OPENERS

COOKING UP A STORM

FRONT SQUARE FASHION

FOOD

SWEET POTATO AND COCONUT SOUP This is a somewhat Asian-inspired take on a classic soup. The sweet potato and coconut tempers the heat of the chilli and ginger perfectly. Though it may not appeal to some, I would recommend giving your bowl a squeeze of lime. It adds a nice kick. 2 large sweet potatoes 1 tin coconut milk Thumb-sized piece of fresh ginger 1 medium-sized chilli 500ml vegetable or chicken stock 1 medium-sized onion 1 lime

1. Preheat the oven to 200C/ gas mark 5 2. Chop the sweet potato, ginger and chilli roughly and place into an oiled roasting tin. Season with salt and pepper. Roast for about half an hour or until the potato is soft. 3. Meanwhile, soften some onions in butter on a low heat. 4. Blitz all the ingredients until they make a soft puree. 5. Place in a large saucepan and add the coconut milk and stock. Simmer for about 20 minutes, seasoning if necessary. 6. Serve with a lime segment to squeeze into the soup. Paige Crosbie

JUKEBOX FLASHBACK NOVEMBER

1992

MUSIC Black Sabbath plays a gig with Judas Priest’s Rob Halford filling in for Dio, who quit the night before. They have a long history of vocalists leaving, including Ozzy, who kills classic Sabbath when he departs in 1979. It’d be his biggest crime, if not for, you know, his other crimes. The only number higher than the non-toilets he’s relieved himself in is the animals he’s killed. He decapitated a white dove, shot and set fire to a barn-load of chickens, threw raw meat at his audience, and offed his own seventeen cats with a handgun. That’s not rock’n’roll, that’s just being a prick. Irony alert: the most infamous incident – the bat – was accidental. Ozzy thought it was rubber. Gheorghe Rusu

STYLE Aleksei Parahhin, studying Philosophy and Mathematics, offers the male populace of Trinity a crash course in modern menswear. The sweater of the season, the roll-neck knit, is employed here in a fine weave and deep blocked colours, creating a strikingly smart top half. A flawless winter coat should be at the top of every man’s shopping list, something that is capable of being thrown over any old thing without forfeiting anything in the style stakes. This is a GradeA look that is tactile and timeless, but worn with a charming personality that doesn’t take itself too seriously. Stephen Moloney

MAMONT VODKA DRINKS Vodka: as tasteless and brutal as Soviet décor, right? Au contraire – vodka is more than mere cocktail filler, though very few of the most interesting brands have crossed the Oder. Mamont is an exception hailing from Altai, a Siberian republic nestled between Kazakhstan and Mongolia, known for its mountain ranges, wolf packs and shamanism. The tusk-shaped bottle and name inspired by the excavation of a frozen Siberian mammoth are gimmicks, but the drink itself is a creamy grain vodka with a subtle cedarnut flavour. It’s an excellent introduction to neat vodka for those living in trepidation. Approximately priced at a reasonable €30, you’ll find Mamont in the usual good off-licences. It is also available online at www.celticwhiskeyshop.com. Declan Johnston 20TH NOVEMBER 2012 // 5


OPENERS

THE SKY’S THE LIMIT GAMES “Skylight started off as sort of 3D Doodle Jump clone.” Skylight’s creator Bill Bordman has no qualms about revealing his influences. The similarities are easy to see, the core of the game being a momentum-based platform much like the iOS game that inspired it. Seen from a firstperson perspective, a winding series of coloured square pads stretch out in the open sky ahead of you. Your aim is to bounce from platform to platform to your home. But Skylight is more than a casual iPhone distraction. Bill Bordman’s experience in music and audio engineering has allowed him to craft a game that’s just as relaxing as it is challeng-

(or if ) you do. At the start there are numerous pads and the soundtrack is sparse, simply isolated piano notes. Successfully journeying further into the level adds more instruments: strings, horns, but subtracts landing platforms. Music and level layout changes every time the level starts, so retrying a level never goes stale. Skylight achieves this variation by procedurally generating both the level design and the music. Randomly creating music seems at first like it would be a cacophony of discordant notes, but, according to Bordman that’s not the case: “It’s not so difficult once you know the rules! If you know about chord struc-

TAKE FIVE // NUMBER 4 1

2

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4 ing: each platform you land on plays another note in an ambient soundscape that grows and swells as you reach the goal. The effect is mesmerizing at times, with a level increasing in difficulty as the soundtrack increases in scope. As your momentum throws you up in the air, the anticipation of whether you’ll land on the next platform is doubled by the anticipation of how the soundtrack will change when

ture, that’s basically what it works from.” Of course there are some limitations to what the game can put out: “Proper rhythm can’t really be done since you don’t know exactly when platforms are going to be hit, so everything’s designed to be sort of ambient and without percussion instruments.” Play the demo at bit.ly/VsKWpB and get the full version momentstudio.co.nz Hugo Fitzpatrick

THE BOXSET // THE KILLING // Season Three of The Killing has just started; critically acclaimed, the show is Denmark’s greatest export since pastries. Catch up on the slow-paced, character-centric show which has been one of the greatest post-HBO TV series.

THE APP // THE POETRY APP // Josephine Hart Poetry Foundation have released this free database of 16 poets to make poetry more accessible in the digital age. Poems are accompanied by audio and video options, some read by bizarrely enthusiastic narrators. Who isn’t intrigued to hear Dominic West read Shelley’s Ozymandias? THE SNACK // BURT’S HANDCOOKED CRISPS // BThe most exciting artisan crisp since Kings’ disappointing Burdocks flavour. Richer flavour than other varieties on the ever-growing marketplace, this is the perfect accompaniment to get you through the long evenings in the library. THE COCKTAIL // VINTAGE COCKTAIL CLUB // Billed as Dublin’s best cocktail club and run by Ireland’s best mixologist Gareth Lambe,, this 1920s speakeasy-inspired, three-level bar is the new highlight of the city centre. Try the Millionaire – a mixture of Gosling dark rum, sloe gin infused with hints of apricot, and lime.

JOIN THE CONVERSATION @tn2magazine facebook.com/ tn2magazine 6 // TN2MAGAZINE.IE

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THE TICKET // PURITY RING // BUTTON FACTORY // This Montreal two-piece welcomed popular approval of their debut album Shines this summer. They come to the Button Factory for a night of dreamy vocals and minimal production. Thursday 29th November // 7.30pm // €17.50 Compiled by Henry Longden


H GAMES

orror gets a bad rap. Gaming receives worse. When the two get together, expect confusion. The interactive nature of video games has often been used by its detractors – from hysterical censorship goons to confused film critics – as a way to provoke fear and condemnation. Not only is there gratuitous violence but the audience is asked to participate in it! While horror video games are apart from the passive media, we will see that they are a natural extension of our fascination with mortality, with our wish to look outside of our reality, and seemingly unlikely moral questions. They will also prepare us for the zombie apocalypse. Most of it can be blamed on H.P. Lovecraft. It is rare to find a horror game that has not been affected by his Old Ones, and even when it involved an unnameable terror, his perversion of the human form. The first 3D survival horror game which established the template for all the others was Alone in The Dark, released in 1992 and developed by Infogrames. Alone in The Dark explicitly referenced Lovecraft’s Necronomicon, as well as borrowing his Cthulhu mythology. Resource management, obtuse puzzles, and fixed cameras all featured, as well as files and newspaper clippings which filled in the back story. Lovecraft’s The Shadow Over Innsmouth and its bad rumours of the pallid-skinned people on the hill informed the tone. We are one with the narrator of the story. There is something deep within us which makes us press forward to investigate terrible things. While Lovecraft may be known for the mythical scope of his work, the simple fragility of the human mind and its perversion is the common thread. There is also the simple love for the mystery. Turning something vast into a few switch puzzles is pleasing. You will get the answers you want if only you can find keycard B. Simple. This is the Agatha Christie reason for horror’s importance, and was a major factor in the success of Alone in The Dark and early survival horror. This is also the most obvious benefit which video games have over other media. The mystery will not be solved by Poirot in the final scene. You have to do it. What is most surprising today about Alone in The Dark is how it creates mood and tension without a palette of high-end graphical splatter. Gore is, however, rather important. Gore in video games is first a reflection of their cinematic influences. These are mostly directors like Sam Raimi (Evil Dead), Stuart Gordon (Re-Animator), and perhaps most importantly, John Carpenter (The Thing). George A. Romero’s zombie series has obviously been cited by Shinji Mikami as a major influence on Resident Evil. In wishing to get to the same end as Romero, Mikami and his team employed the same tools. Romero used a lot of blood. He also created a hellish alternate reality in which to exist for a couple of hours prompted important questions about our nature, our cruelty, our stupidity. It could also be damn funny. As significant as Romero’s zombie movies are, the work of John Carpenter is just as important, especially where it concerns creature design. One look at Resident Evil’s nonzombie creatures will show a clear link to Carpenter’s classic The Thing, which features some of the greatest physical effects in horror. When Shinji Mikami led the series away from the fixed-camera-obtuse-puzzle formula of the genre with Resident Evil 4, Capcom were still borrowing heavily from the perverse transformations of Rob Bottin and his crew. Resident Evil 4’s tentacle dogs are directly taken from The Thing. John Carpenter’s ability to make something violent

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We humans have an inherent fascination with violence and horror, so our Deputy Games Editor considers the video games that define the horror genre while exploring its intrigue along the way

WORDS Paul Casey ILLUSTRATION Alice Wilson

OH, THE

HORROR


R!

GAMES a disclaimer had to be placed on the front cover. It also took from Peter Jackson’s Braindead, which saw a zombie baby in a blender, a priest “kicking arse for the Lord” and zombies cut up by a lawnmower. It is essentially a large scale version of the Super NES game Zombies Ate My Neighbours, and is compulsive fun especially with a custom soundtrack of early 90s R&B. Third, and most importantly gore is a sign of the worth in engaging with the repulsive, and the dismantling of the recognisable. Horror games can do more than provoke the mortality problem, or force the player through a roller coaster of scares. The question “Am I capable of this evil?” is a worthwhile one. Bioshock is perhaps the greatest example of horror in video games that does more than appeal to the exploitation/survival horror crowd. Rapture is the most compelling story world of any video game, and the scares that come echo back to the genetic, fated terror of H.P. Lovecraft’s weirdest tales. If one good thing has come from Ayn Rand’s Atlas Shrugged, it is that it allowed Bioshock to exist. Bioshock offers its twisted vision of objectivist society with incredible style. It is graphically violent and intensely frightening. In making the player choose – or seem to choose – how they impact this fallen world, the emotional payoff whether positive or negative is earned. The player is a part of the world, and when they find they have inflicted needless cruelty on it,

“OUR ULTIMATE INSIGNIFICANCE NATURALLY LEADS TO HORROR AS COMEDY”

and disturbing also seem enchanting is reflected in the best horror games. In At The Mouth of Madness, Carpenter sent Sam Neill into Lovecraft’s world of malevolent old gods. He knew he should not go, but he did anyway because it was in his nature. Video games direct us in the same way. They offer vast worlds and lucid dreams, and like Sam Neill we cannot refuse. When we think of our hatred, our capacity to destroy, and our mortality, we naturally veer towards horror. Second, there is undeniable catharsis for the individual in victimless taboo breaking. That so many important thoughts, memories and actions can be reduced to flesh and organs is a funny thought. Our ultimate insignificance naturally leads to horror as comedy. Suda 51 made his name with games like Killer 7, Shadows of the Damned and Lollipop Chainsaw. He can be compared with Takashi Miike (Gozu) and Yoshihiro Nishimura (Tokyo Gore Police), in how he has melded the absurd, the despicable and the comedic. One will find severe perversion and unusual violence, but also superior game design and individual character. Dead Rising is just as amusing but not quite as deviant. It was so obviously influenced by Dawn of the Dead that

it is clear Bioshock’s best qualities are unique to the medium. On the grimy end of things Rockstar’s Manhunt 1 and 2 expressed both the successes of the torture sub-genre, as well as its unfortunate excesses. The first game is a brilliant exploration of the moral culpability of the player. If the original is a thoughtful, intelligent experience in the style of Audition or Save the Green Planet! the second is any Saw sequel: aimlessly nasty and fairly boring. The censorship of Manhunt 2 in Ireland remains pitiful. It is a shameful echo of past arbitrary instances of state censorship. The same fear that Brief Encounter would lead to divorce and that The Exorcist would make people take the Catholic Church seriously, led to Manhant 2’s censorship. “They may experience it in the wrong way!” gets more traction with video games because it is mistaken as the exclusive area of children. Insight of the outsider problem, of human nature is sadly lost, along with trash like Manhunt 2, in a muddle of weird paternalism. Torture and sadism were featured just as disturbingly in Edgar Allan Poe’s The Pit and the Pendulum, and he’s not exactly a diminutive literary talent … There is more to horror in video games than party yucks. The best offer transformation. Gore is a way to get there. You will end up numb and full of terror. You will jar your brain out of its lazy comfort. You will know you are alive. For now.

“Is all that we see or seem But a dream within a dream?” --- Edgar Allan Poe 20TH NOVEMBER 2012 // 9


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N I T G IN T E G

TECHNOLOGY

WORDS Ciaran McGrath ILLUSTRATION Alice Wilson

Communicating with our computers is an old problem. We just don't speak the same language. Like all troubled couples though, we've developed ways of coping. The input devices that we use to get computers to understand what we want have changed a lot over the years . Where once we lived in a world of keyboards and mice, we now have touchscreens and motion sensors, and we may just end up watching the Nerdpocalypse through a pair of Google Glasses

Punch Cards: Where It All Began n the 1800s, Charles Babbage planned to build a steam-powered mechanical computer, the “Analytical Engine”. Ada Lovelace, the world’s first computer programmer, designed punchcards to control it. Sadly, punchcards languished until the 20th century and the first great era of digital computing. This was the era of computers that filled whole rooms. However, while computers could understand punchcards, only one in a million humans could do the same.

The trackball first appeared in 1953, but It was another decade before someone flipped it and created the mouse itself. A perfect fit for graphical user interfaces, mice were soon everywhere. Trackballs lingered in laptops before another emerging technology pushed them out: the trackpad.

Keyboards: Buttons, Buttons Everywhere . . . Everyone likes to push buttons. Especially large red ones with “Danger!” signs nearby. From remote controls to videogame controllers, there’s something very satisfying about physically making something happen. That simple one-dimensional action is is one way of communicating with machines that anyone can understand. Keyboards are the ultimate form of push-button computer control. An evolution of the faithful typewriter, they combined the simple act of pressing a button with the natural language we spend our lives using. Computers had been dragged a little way out of the binary cave, and the keyboard remains with us after half a century.

Every Sense in the Book The trackpad was a mere stepping stone to the touchscreen. Tablet computers form windows into an electronic universe, and a new generation of toddlers are growing up knowing how to swipe and zoom. It’s not just touch either. Computers can listen and do what we tell them, though turning speech into text is still tricky. They can even watch us: this is a world with a motion-sensitive CCTV on every street corner, a Kinect in every living room and a camera on every phone and laptop. Computers can see, hear, and feel, and if you’ve come faceto-face with a breathalyser, then you’ve seen a computer that tastes and smells. Computers have even more senses though, courtesy of GPS chips and gyroscopic sensors.

Mice: Point Before You Click Early arcade games tried various weird controllers before settling on the joystick. All of a sudden, our body movements appeared on screen. Computer manufacturers took a bit longer to catch on, but when they did we got another breakthrough: the mouse.

The Future? As computers dissolve into our surroundings, our clothes and even our bodies, their ability to pay attention to what we’re up to will keep growing. The question you might ask is not how to get them to pay attention but how to get them to stop . . .

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DRINKS tn2 speaks to beer sommelier Sophie Anderton about the perennival association between men and beer, and what can be done to change it

DRINK THE NORM

T

WORDS Paige Crosbie

DRY

here’s a girl in a well-known night spot in Dublin. She’s cradling a pint of beer and talking to some friends when a man approaches her. He takes the beer from her hand and says, “Please don’t drink this, it’s so unattractive.” This is the story I was told by a close friend recently. It seems unbelievable that someone would reproach an acquaintance on their choice of drink. And yet there still appears to be an antiquated notion that women shouldn’t drink a pint. And it’s coming from all sides. “I’d be afraid other girls would judge me,” says a female friend. “A pint is hardly the greatest accessory for a cocktail dress,” quips another. Amusing as this is, it all points to the worrying fact that women are forgoing drinking beer, not because they dislike the taste, but because of an archaic social norm. Sophie Atherton, a beer sommelier and journalist based in the UK, has some ideas on why women are reluctant to enjoy one of the world’sv oldest drinks. She mentions the fact that women have been resolutely ignored as possible beer-drinkers for the last 50 years or so. Atherton gives the example of Slater’s Top Totty, a craft beer which sports a busty bunny girl on the tap. This kind of obvious sexualisation of women is seen in many beer ads. Women are either not present or if they are, have little role to play. Rarely are women actually seen sporting a pint. Worse still are the stilted and failing attempts of the brewing industry to advertise to a group they have so successfully alienated. Chick Beer is an offering from Stateside. Its housing in an eye-watering candy pink bottle is apparently aimed at ten-year-old girls. Animée, an offering from Coors, was universally slated on its release last year, and described by one reviewer as “hoppy pot pourri”. So far, so disappointing.

The last few years have seen a huge boom in the variety of beers available on the market. We no longer have to be limited to “Lady” beers which taste more like a sickly alchopop than a proper drink. Now there are batch-produced beers which range along a whole spectrum of strengths and flavours, going from light citrus notes to deep cocoa undertones. Surely a flavour to suit every palate then, be they male or female. Atherton doesn’t think taste is an issue so much as what the beer is served in: “I wonder if young women would be keener to try it and be seen drinking it if it was served in more attractive glassware?” She suggests a move away from hefty pint glasses towards something slightly more sophisticated: “Stemmed glasses, such as oversized wine glasses, are one of the best receptacles from which to enjoy a beer.” So what can be done to introduce reluctant women to the world of beer? “What I’d suggest is that young women aim to drop their beer-fear; get together with some of their pals and head for a craft beer bar where the staff should be able to offer them some amazing beers to try, and serve it in some appropriate glassware that doesn’t make them feel like they are drinking out of a bucket,” says Atherton. She recommends Vedett Extra Blond for a light option or Williams Bros Profanity Stout for a deeper, darker offering. Both women and men it seems need to realise that there’s a brave new world of beer out there with something for everyone. Just try to find the right glass. Read Sophie’s blog // afemaleview.net Photo of Sophie courtesy of Toby Weller // www.tobyweller.co.uk 20TH NOVEMBER 2012 // 11


MUSIC

REVEALING HER tn2 talks to Lucy Rose about brownies, embarassment, and why she is happy to just live in the moment

WORDS Tara Joshi

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MUSIC t is a cold and rainy Sunday afternoon in Whelan’s when I meet singer-songwriter Lucy Rose Parton in the midst of her lengthy European tour promoting her debut album, Like I Used To. Somewhat surreally, the first thing the waif-like 23-year-old does is proffer a tupperware box in my direction and ask if I’d like a brownie. This, I muse through a mouthful of chocolate, isn’t that incongruous coming from an artist who, along with the standard merchandise of CDs and tshirts, is known to sell own-brand jam and tea (Builder Grey – two parts English Breakfast, one part Earl Grey). The brownies are in fact a gift from a fan, but Parton concedes that selling her own tea is unusual as far as music merchandise goes. “It’s nice to be able to sell different merch if they’ve got the CD already,” she says, though of course – so the story goes – she started selling her tea at shows back in the days when she didn’t have any CDs to sell. That was a few years ago, when Parton secured a place to read Geography at University College London. “It was always a back-up plan”, she explains. “I went to London to try and do music but I had a place at university in case things didn’t work out. I didn’t know if I was gonna like it or not but I really wanted to give music a shot . . . and then I loved it.” When she left her native home of Warwickshire, Parton played countless open-mic nights, tirelessly perfecting her craft and climbing the hefty ladder of London’s music scene. Looking back on those early days, Lucy is quick to dismiss the idea that she is really that far removed from where she started. “It feels like I’m still right at the beginning, and I’m still working towards something . . . ” She hesitates before continuing, “It’s really good so far, but it’s not like things are mad crazy or anything. It still feels like things are getting better and better – a really natural progression.”

On the subject of her progression since she started out, at Bestival last September she noted the strangeness of seeing familiar faces from her old school among the sizeable crowd. “Yeah, that was weird. There was another gig recently, actually, and there was this girl who was like . . . the “cool girl” in the year above – and I remember her being a “mean girl”. And I was probably a geek in her eyes at the time but then she came to the show and queued up and she asked for a photo with me. And I just thought, that is hilarious.” FormerRegina George cases aside, she is grateful for the support she’s been getting: “I mean, people that I knew before are like, ‘It’s amazing that you’re actually doing this,’ and, y’know, it’s really nice of them.” Her music is pretty and light, her vocals fluid yet powerful, but it is her lyricism especially that has captured attention – it feels a bit like eavesdropping on something very private. Did she feel awkward about playing such candid songs to people for the first time? “Definitely”, Parton agrees immediately. “That’s why Red Face is called that – I was embarrassed. I mean, all of my songs, really. I don’t write songs for anybody else but myself, as a release of

my own emotions.” We discuss her musical influences (including Joni Mitchell and Neil Young) but she says that she’s not really limited to a particular artist or genre: “I’m influenced by so many things – by good music – by powerful songs, true emotions, interesting musicality . . . Great art, in general.” The first time Lucy Rose came into the public consciousness was probably around the time she started singing with Bombay Bicycle Club, featuring heavily as a vocalist on both Flaws and A Different Kind of Fix, and touring with them before veering off into her own music. “I’d love to work with them again,” she says of her time with the band, “It just felt like it was the right time to try and make music for me – I didn’t want to be a backing singer for the rest of my life or constantly hanging onto the coattails of somebody else.” In person, Parton is a little more reserved than the openness of her songs might imply, but later that night when she gets on the stage, she really comes alive. She tells me earlier that the part of tour where she’s happiest is when she gets to play to a new crowd every night. I ask her what I fear is a somewhat clichéd question: where does she see herself in five years time? Her response makes me glad I asked, however: “I don’t want to be anywhere but where I am right now. If I’m still getting paid to make music then I’m gonna be truly happy.” Like I Used To is out now // More info at lucyrosemusic.com

20TH NOVEMBER 2012 // 13


FILM

DIRECTOR’S CUT

With his latest film, Death of a Superhero, hitting our screens next week, tn2 caught up with Ian Fitzgibbon, who attempts to inspire us all to make movies

D

eath of a Superhero is a German-produced film directed by an Irishman based on a New Zealand novel. It is fitting then that an international crew collaborate to create a story based on the universal themes of growing up and mortality. Thomas Brodie Sangster has matured from his adorable roles as a child actor, most notably in Nanny McPhee, into a young man unafraid to assume a challenging role. Granted he’s still technically a child actor as he plays fifteenyear-old Donald, but is thoroughly convincing as the troubled teenager diagnosed with a terminal cancer. Donald is confronted with his own mortality and struggles between making the most out of his time left and resigning himself to his fate. A lot of the time he just doesn’t care. To keep it entertaining and believable they needed someone with a light-hearted touch with black-comedy credentials to direct it. Enter Ian Fitzgibbon: “It’s all chemistry really isn’t it? It’s about getting the right balance. Clearly Mark (Doherty), the screenwriter, and I didn’t want to write a depressing film. We wanted humour but we wanted humour to

WORDS Tom Lenihan PHOTOGRAPHY Matthew Wilson brooding. Quite a different role from King Kong or Gollum it seems. “He read the script and I think he fell in love with the role and that was it. He came off Rise of the Planet of the Apes onto our humble little set and I think he probably relished doing something so different. I was really encouraging him to think about stillness and silence and just listening and I think he took it up with relish and really enjoyed being able to show a different side to his acting.” The film exhibits spectacular animation weaving in and out of the story that reveals insights into Donald’s psyche as a talented artist and how he feels about the world around him. Balancing this are the teenage themes of trying to get laid before he dies, friendship, and discovering who he is and what he values. It wasn’t difficult to transmit those ideas to the young cast. “I think that if the casting is good then I think you’re just guiding people,” Fitzgibbon says. “I don’t think you have to actively direct somebody if the casting is right. It’s the exact same with TV, I have the same approach. I think sometimes you get nervous actors who want a lot of feedback

“WE WANTED HUMOUR BUT WE WANTED HUMOUR TO COME FROM A DARK PLACE” come from a dark place. So as long as we felt the humour was coming from a situation and it wasn’t a hunt for a gag then I think we really strived to put the humour in and I think it helps the film to have that because it’s such a difficult subject matter.” Fitzgibbon has seen success directing A Film with Me In it with Dylan Moran and Perrier’s Bounty with Brendan Gleeson and Cillian Murphy. He often appears in his films in cameos, and he has a short scene as a psychiatrist in this latest feature, but he was happy to have Andy Serkis, of Lord of the Rings fame, become involved and play another psychiatrist who Donald finally lets in after much

and they want you to help them shape or form a performance. Andy (Serkis) and Thomas (Sangster) have a great handle on it and I think when they got their first scene under their belts they knew where they were headed. “All I want is talented people around me so they can challenge me and I can grow as a director.” That is often difficult in the Irish film industry, but Fitzgibbon’s advice for any young, prospective filmmaker is this: “Go out and make something. Anything. You have no excuses. You can get everything you need now. You can make a film from a phone. Go out with a camera and shoot.” 20TH NOVEMBER 2012 // 15


STAGE

TENDER

IS THE NIGHT

“I

t’s OK to get lost,” according to Marc Atkinson, director of Sugarglass Theatre Company. Getting lost in the theatre is nothing new, but for this emerging theatre collective “lost” takes on a whole new realm of meaning. The actors become lost in the text as the words wash over them and flow into the audience, creating a dynamic that seeks to engage as well as entertain. “It’s so circular, almost every word connects to something else in the play,” says Marc, adding that Tender Napalm is “a fairytale from a classic writer, but addressing a modern psyche.” It’s the story of a Man and Woman, stranded amid the dreamlike wreckage of their love, both surreal and highly realistic. While he admits the work could be considered “deeply political”, it does not tend towards the didactic style that has ruled the Irish stage as of late. Instead of beginning with nothing they “begin with the idea and the conversation that [they] want to start”. This approach places the two actors in a compromising position. Erica Murray and Aaron Heffernan are established in their own right, with a Best Actress Nomination (Dublin Fringe) and a coveted Abbey role respectively. Although Aaron is quick to point out there is no difference in his work ethic when approaching the national stage or Sugarglass, he notes the innate divide between a “two-hander and strongly ensemble [piece]”. A former Classics and Drama student in

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Barely graduated and already making a mark on the Dublin theatre scene, the team behind Sugarglass Theare Company tell tn2 about their upcoming production of Philip Ridley's Tender Napalm

WORDS Katherine Murphy PHOTOGRAPHY Paul Testar


Trinity, he links Ancient Greece with Dublin theatre through the “Trojan Horse Theory: in which the audience do not know what it is at first glance . . . but a day, a week, a year later there’s some sort of resonance.” Marc also refers to this theory in a less academic fashion, calling it “an itch, unsure about what it is”. Considering these complementary views on theatre I wonder whether they’ve felt like adults in the real world after graduation, a feeling that shakes most graduates to the core, but seems to have eluded the company. Aaron’s response is that the most unsettling aspect of leaving college is the “User Expired” message that appears on the campus computers. But Sugarglass are far from their expiration date; in fact, Tender Napalm “feels like a young play”. “It couldn’t have been written before Facebook, in which actual life is a virtual story,” says Marc, adding “It resonates with people of our generation without being a play for people of our own generation.” And looking back on the company’s track record, they certainly gravitate towards texts that most college students would find challenging. From Beckett’s shorts to the Steppenwolf myth, Sugarglass root each production in stories that are not only theatrical but almost literary in nature. Philip Ridley’s Tender Napalm is no different. A beautifully constructed linguistic labyrinth in which “strange things become normalized”, and its’ Irish debut is safe in the hands of those who understand the challenges ahead. Sugarglass consists of four members: Marc Atkinson, Colm McNally, Jack Berrill, and Christina Matthews, forming “by accident” without any intention to create a production company. But this serendipity was more than luck: it was fate. As the director, Marc is comfortable and at ease, having acted as the chair of DU Players during his student life. The other company members have carved out very specific roles for themselves as Production Manager, Designer and Stage Manager. They are “interested in very different aspects of production”, says Marc, while maintaining thematic consistency in their work. Having established that getting lost is an integral part of the process, how does this full-scale production team deal with epic sets and artistically-rendered ideas that appear fully realized on stage? “Style comes later on . . . [the text] becomes something [else],” says Marc, alluding to the over-arching theme of the company: texts presented in the most innovative fashions. This central concept lead to reviews that called Sugarglass “staggeringly original”, and also a nomi-

“THE PLAY RESONATES WITH PEOPLE OF OUR GENERATION” nation for the Fringe’s most contested award: Spirit of the Fringe (previous winners have included WillFredd and THEATREclub). Although the company has a wide range of influences, it’s the avant-garde director Robert Wilson who stands out for this ensemble. He inspired the troupe to “get away from what it is, and instead find [their] way through it”. This method of working is more time-consuming than the average show, with the company preferring two-month rehearsal periods, in stark comparison with the standard three-week mould. And they are certainly aware of their luck in this respect: when asked about the future they are just as carefully optimistic, looking for not only artistic inspiration, but “potentially finding a big space, an empty warehouse . . . and perhaps a workshop for making [sets]”. Ethica (Samuel Beckett, 2012), All Hell Lay Beneath (Dublin Fringe, 2012) and Tender Napalm (Project Arts Centre, 2012) are all “ambitious enough from a production end”. Marc notes the dedication of the entire company during the All Hell Lay Beneath considering that “none of [them] had worked on anything like that before”. He jokingly adds that “walking in the venue and finding your actors scrubbing the kitchen” goes above and beyond what we usually expect from thespians. And perhaps this is what makes Sugarglass Theatre different: they expect more of us as an audience and more of the actors as performers. Aaron says that the two characters are “strangely intimate but at a distance”, and the same thing can be said for the spectators. Ultimately, their work is less academic than the practices behind it as “it depends on who you are and what you make.” Getting lost in the work of Sugarglass is easy because they’re only beginning their artistic journey as an ensemble, as a production company, and as young performers. They are still finding their feet and I just hope that they will continue to lose themselves on stage every night. Sugarglass Theatre’s Tender Napalm runs in the Space Upstairs at the Project Arts Centre from 26th November to 8th December at 8pm // More info at www.sugarglasstheatre.com 20TH NOVEMBER 2012 // 17


LITERATURE

B A NN E D

&

Literature Editor Alison Connolly explores the long and often surprising history of literary censorship

BU R N E D

O

n 8th August, 2012, comedian Joan Rivers arrived at a Costco store in Burbank, California, armed with a megaphone. Joan was not a happy camper. Costco had decided that her new book, I Hate Everyone . . . Starting with Me, was not suitable for consumption by the average Costco customer and had banned the tome from its shelves. Joan’s new book is not a damning indictment of US foreign policy, nor is it a lewd and graphic account of some perverse sexual fetish. It’s a book about all the stuff Joan hates. And it was banned because a few of the testimonials on the back contained swear words. And it was banned because a few of the testimonials on the back contained swear words. Joan decided that this infringement of her right to irritate Americans with bad writing was one step too far. So she turned up at Costco and managed to sell 100 copies of her book before she was removed from the premises. While few of us are going to take to the streets in solidarity with Joan Rivers, book censorship is certainly alive and well. It may be justifiable for a private company like Costco to limit the books they stock, but it’s still somewhat Joan Rivers, book censorship is certainly alive and well. It may be justifiable for a private company like Costco to limit the books they stock, but it’s still somewhat worrying that the reason this particular book was banned was for a few crude words on the cover. For as long as books have been provoking reactions, books have also been besmirched, banned and burned. You may well presume that book censorship is an archaic concept that fell out of favour along with witch hunts and the chance of being hanged for thievery. This is sadly untrue. This is sadly untrue. The history of this form of censorship goes right back to the beginning of literature, and the invention of the printing press. The argument seemed to be that when information could be printed and distributed with

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ease, people’s morals were much more susceptible to challenge and when information could be printed and distributed with ease, people’s morals were much more susceptible to challenge and change. One group could not stand by and let such corruption continue. And so the Catholic Church introduced the Index Librorum Prohibitorum (Index of Prohibited Books) in 1559. These lists included the names of books which were banned because their content criticised or questioned theological or ideological thinking at the time. questioned theological or ideological thinking at the time; something the Church was loath to allow. Galileo was just one of many authors whose work was deemed too dangerous to be unleashed upon civilised Christian society. Governments have also taken an active role in the censorship of literature over the decades. Few people are aware that in 1926 our very own Department of Justice established the Few people are aware that in 1926 our very own Department of Justice established the Committee on Evil Literature to investigate the censorship of printed matter in Ireland. While someone probably should have warned the department that the name chosen for the committee was kindling for future mockery, the records of the Committee, which were released in 1995, detail early attempts to prevent morally repugnant material making its way into, and being circulated around, our fair isle. The committee was made up of three lay people and two members of the clergy – one Roman Catholic, one Church of Ireland – and heard submissions from a number of interested parties. The committee found that existing laws were insufficient to deal with the wave of obscene literature making its way into Ireland. The committee found that existing laws were insufficient to deal with the wave of obscene literature making its way into Ireland. These findings led to the establishment of the Censorship


LITERATURE

BANNED BOOKS AT HOME AND ABROAD

Joyce’s Ulysses was banned in the UK, USA and Australia in the 30s due to Sexual Content. It was never officially banned in Ireland but was blocked from entering the country through the Customs Consolidation Act (1876).

Stalin banned Nineteen EightyFour in 1950 due to seeing it as a critical satire against his system. The ban was only lifted in 1990. The UK and US nearly banned the book during the Cuban Missile Crisis.

How to Drive Your Man Wild in Bed is one of eight books currently banned in Ireland, the board’s decision is based on the inference that the books “advocate abortion or ways of carrying out abortions”. Henry Longden

of Publications Board and the subsequent banning of thousands of books. These included J.D. Salinger’s The Catcher in the Rye, Edna O’Brien’s The Country Girls, and, in 1992, Madonna’s coffee table book, Sex. The Irish government abandoned attempts to save our souls through book censorship in 1998. Other states seem less willing to give authors free reign. In September 2010, the US Defence Department bought the entire first printing of a book written by a lieutenant colonel and former Defence Intelligence Agency officer. Operation Dark Heart, by Anthony Shaffer, detailed the author’s time in Afghanistan and was deemed a potential threat to national security. All editions from the first print run were destroyed. Destroying works in this manner is nothing new. Book burnings have long been the spectacle of choice when it comes to saving citizens from themselves. For centuries book burnings have been used not only to rid a community of potentially harmful literature, but to instill fear in members of the public. Ray Bradbury’s 1953 novel Fahrenheit 451 portrays a surreal future where all books are banned and the job description of firemen is subverted so that it is they who are responsible for burning down houses which are found to have such contraband within. While the plot of Bradbury’s book may seem a little far-fetched, the reality is that countless works have been lost in systematic book burnings. Ray Bradbury’s 1953 novel Fahrenheit 451 portrays a surreal future where all books are banned and the job description of firemen is subverted so that it is they who are responsible for burning down houses which are found to have such contraband within. While the plot of Bradbury’s book may seem a little far-fetched, the reality is that countless works have been lost in systematic book burnings. The most well-known examples of these took place in Nazi Germany. Ironically enough, at the

end of WW2 the Allied Control Council issued remarkably similar directives ordering all books which were considered to promote Nazism or militarism to be banned and destroyed. A more recent example of mass book burnings took place after the invasion of Iraq in 2003, when after the invasion of Iraq in 2003, when the Iraqi national library and the Islamic library in Baghdad were burned, destroying documents dating back to the 16th century. Book burnings have mutated from naïve attempts to protect the public to obvious and frightening displays of power. Yet the result remains the same: the destruction of the sometimes rare and priceless work of the world’s authors. Book censorship also continues in a more subtle way in classrooms and libraries across the world. Book censorship also continues in a more subtle way in classrooms and libraries across the world. Challenges are frequently brought to children’s reading lists by concerned parents and, just as frequently, these challenges are successful. As children’s author Judy Blume puts it: “Censorship grows out of fear, and because fear is contagious, some parents are easily swayed.” Yet a book cannot pop up and shove images into the eyes of children, unlike a violent commercial or a show about sex aired before the watershed. If a child is intelligent enough to pick up Of Mice and Men and understand the content they’re probably intelligent enough to come up with the same ideas themselves. Studying a list of books banned and censored throughout the years, one can’t help but think that it looks remarkably similar to lists informing individuals of the books they simply must read during their lifetime: Catch-22, The Colour Purple, Animal Farm, The Colour Purple, Animal Farm A Farewell to Arms, Harry Potter . . . Judging by censorship’s track record it seems Ralph Waldo Emerson was right: “Every burned book enlightens the world.” 20TH NOVEMBER 2012 // 19


STYLE

A GUN FOR HIRE WORDS Isabella Davey Helmut Newton's work caused us to review fashion in a completely riveting and refreshing light. However, his exploration of the female form as both an entity and a mystery is what truly marks him out as the Kaiser of the camera

W

hen did Helmut Newton’s photography start? There is no definite answer. With his first camera in Berlin? His first studio in Melbourne? His first published pictures with industry-defining French Vogue? Talking of his childhood, Newton noted, “We weren’t interested in drugs or alcohol, we were only interested in girls.” This statement reveals little on how he cracked into the world of fashion photography. The clothes were merely half the story for him: stiff cotton creations, silks that slip through the body’s contours, hand-woven brocade, created by a team of Guatemalan nuns – these richly evocative clothes only achieve their potential when exhibited on the model. Newton exposed these pieces through an interwoven celebration of anatomical beauty and the magical virtuosity of the creator. Before Newton, was fashion photography fun? Before him, the industry’s imagery had no tongues to express their thought, let alone placed in a cheek to provoke a reaction from the viewer. Chanel was for the conservatives, Yves Saint Laurent for the heiresses, and Hermes for the equestrian-embroiled landowner who named their horse Mister Bubbles. By the end of the 70s, under the auspices of the mischievous maverick, Chanel exuded modern elegance that fed on an ulterior “afternoon delight”, YSL displayed labyrinthine androgyny in two-piece tuxedos, and Hermes became, in Newton’s own words, “the world’s greatest sex shop, with its whips, saddles and spurs.” What he brought to these images was not simply controversy, irony, and a smattering of nudity: much more importantly, he bottled the essence of the brand, and injected it with modernity and avant-garde values. No haute couture designer had ever seen such a moral turmoil than when luxury brand Hermes did at the deft hands of Newton. Identified with the equestrian bit buckles and silk scarves that the Queen dressed her corgis in, Hermes originally symbolised aristocracy as opposed to sadomasochism. Newton’s 1976 Hermes shoot for the magazine Adam (an off-shoot of Vogue at the time) has been immortalised for its ostentatious display of sex as a selling point for the brand. Women on all fours, saddled up, buckles down, breasts out, one on the other . . . Mr Newton, please behave. How did he get away with (double-entendres aside) photos of women riding each other? In some respects he didn’t. His self-instilled “pornochic” greatly tainted the more mature image of the cult designer: “I

think Mr Hermes had a fit when he saw the photos. Actually a lot of advertisers have fits when they see what I do with their products.” Professor of Sociology, author of Pricing Beauty, and acclaimed commentator on the fashion industry, Boston University’s Dr Mears has observed: “the author’s intent rarely mirrors the audiences’ reception in a perfect way. My hunch is that Newton was trying to provoke, in whichever way that gets read by his audience at the time.” Some moments scream for retrospective. When the central image of the series, Saddle I, went up for auction in Christies in 2008, the commentary upheld that “he visualised and executed a series of pictures in which his high-fashion models enact elegantly stylised games of submission and domination in a witty spoof of conventional fetish photography.” Of Newton’s spectacular 1976 publication Sleepless Nights, one particular image shot for the Yves Saint Laurent campaign surmises the aura that surrounds the collection. With the daylight shots plunging into darkness as one moves through the book, the setting of this particular shoot on the Rue Aubriot is backlit by the street lamps that create an urban halo around the solitary Parisian silhouette standing side on and central, carefree yet controlled. Our eyes are treated to more than a fine Yves Saint Laurent tuxedo two-piece: Newton injected the revolutionary “le smoking” concept with a radical reinterpretation, a movement of the female into the alpha-male spectrum. We don’t see a woman in a man’s world: we see a figure pioneering a world run by women, who commandeers the exploration of beauty in her form, figure and fashion. Her foot slips forward, allowing for full appreciation of the wide leg cut of the trousers. The cigarette smoke dissolves into the night time air. The tightly sculpted tresses glimmer under the hazy lamplight. This vision is like an arrow, tearing at the heartstrings of men and women alike, feeding us with androgyny and louche enigma. The image highlights both the woman and the clothes, as opposed to an image of, as Karl Lagerfield suggests in his introduction to Big Nudes, merely “store window mannequins”. This woman is in control. Newton’s desire to smash assumptions and immerse you into his wit continued through the decades, highlighted in a particularly marvelous collaboration with Thierry Mugler in a 1998-9 photograph campaign. The allusive imagery of a bountiful Virgin Maryesqe madame (http://bit.ly/S3FZFG), draped in white shrouds, expresses an intertextuality with the model’s face juxtaposed along-

“I HATE GOOD TASTE. IT’S THE WORST THING THAT CAN HAPPEN TO A CREATIVE PERSON”

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STYLE

“NEWTON’S WOMEN DO NOT SHY AWAY FROM THE ONLOOK OF RAMPANT MALES; THEY PROVOKE AND TEASE THE DITHERING DANDIES QUAILING IN THEIR TOP HATS AND TAILS LIKE NERVOUS VIRGINS” side the real deal. This intermedia allows the image to become more tangible while the clothes transcend their conventional purpose. Shots featuring a doorway articulate classic cinematographical suspense. Newton adds a story to the images and allows them to play out with our own viewpoint. It’s the green screen diptych that appears to close the collection’s imagery beautifully. A black dress with mesh inlets coupled with her partner in crime donned in a white jacket. Girls with cheek, naughtiness, a streamlining of sexual power into a confident cotton blend. The geometric edge of “Image Two” emphasised by a unique v-fringe accentuating arched brows. Mouth open, eyebrows raised, a wink frozen on paper. A Mugler mademoiselle, at the height of the 90s. The 1980s saw Second-Wave feminism peak and morph into the diverse and sexually focused Third Wave. It also saw the publication of Newton’s Big Nudes. While women were vocalising their sexual dominance and intellectual prowess, Newton’s third book instilled images accompanying the sounds of the global issue. His models displayed the personal empowerment that the ThirdWave feminists were campaigning for, while also alluding to intellectualism and the female form as a weapon against prejudice, re-

sulting in a strong connection between Newton’s imagery and the off-shoot stiletto feminism. Newton expressed the acceptance of empowerment in its extremely diverse forms, the postmodern use of fetish fashion, sensational sadomasochism and female exhibition of empowerment, in the context of both stiletto feminism and its initial form, lipstick feminism. With his vision steady and only the ensembles stripped back, Newton made a seamless transition from the instigator of a revolutionary fashion to that of a commentator on the female entity itself. “A woman’s presence expresses her own attitude to herself, and defines what can and cannot be done to her.” In one swoop John Berger, in his critically acclaimed 1972 publication Ways of Seeing, pinpointed the exact essence Newton’s women exude out of their glossy confines. “Presence for a woman is so intrinsic to her person that men tend to think of it as an almost physical emanation, a kind of heat or smell or aura.” In this respect Newton’s nudes certainly sizzle; their strong and unapologetic glares boring into the eyes of women and enlivening the groins of men. A lasting point made by Berger on the topic, however, brings about an initial confusion but a lasting insight to the mystery


“THIS IS MORE THAN A WOMAN, THIS IS A FORCE, PUTTING TWO FINGERS UP TO THE OLD NOTIONS OF DISCRETION AND SUBMISSION” that is Newton’s Big Nudes. Men look at women while the muses watch themselves being looked at. The woman thus turns herself into an object of vision - a sight. This visual dissection of the female form may hold resonance with society as a whole, but not since the neo-Classical era of sculpted nudes and nymphs has this statement seemed as valid as with the captured scenes by the “king of kink”. His women do not shy away from the onlook of rampant males, provoking and teasing dithering dandies as they quail in their top hats and tails like nervous virgins. They stand at-ease, legs apart, shoulders back or arched forward, rumps out and a smack of women “on the prowl”. The dizzying heights of their heels and the red of their lips do nothing but emphasise strength and unapologetic power to annihilate. Taking Tied Up Torso as an example, the clothes are exempt, yet the expression is just as commanding, exuding the premise of an unyielding, contemporary “Rosie the Riveter”. We are left with no garments

to desire or detest, just an appreciation of Newton’s life and love: the woman. The strength in her face coupled with the ripple of self through her arm: this is more than a woman, this is a force, putting two fingers up to the old notions of discretion and submission. Call me a naïve philogynist, or call me Donald Trump, but does that not qualify as a sensationally modern, irresistibly lustrous, feminist triumph? If Newton was a self-stated “gun for hire”, his bullets shattered global perceptions of fashion and rebounded into the mouths of the audience that had branded sex and lust for the whores and heretics. Oh the sweet smack of irony that all this can be gleaned from the snaps of a man initially paid by fashion dons to create an image of next season’s lace and leather. Helmut Newton’s work is on display at the Helmut Newton Foundation, Berlin, and on exhibition at Onassis Cultural Centre, Athens until 3rd March. Sincere thanks to June Newton for permission. 20TH NOVEMBER 2012 // 23


MUSIC

Speaking to tn2 after a practice session, the lads from Girl Band try to sum up their sound, and suggest they prefer not to be compared to Nirvana

WORDS Gheorghe Rusu PHOTOGRAPHY Matthew Wilson

“T

HOM EGR OWN

hat was real slick,” says Alan Duggan, guitarist, as I slide the dictaphone onto the table and conspicuously try to get the interview started, and everyone laughs. That’s the energy that permeates the band along with a joke once every few minutes: thoroughly laddish group laughter, as one should expect from four 21-year-old friends in a band together, being interviewed together. We’re sitting in the kitchen of Girl Band’s practice space on Ossory Road, which they share with friends Jet Setter, Peaks, Spies, Tandem Felix and drummer Adam Faulkner’s other band, We Arrive Alive. They should be excitable. They’re practicing to tour their first EP, France 98, whose early accolades are the cherry on an already sizeable cake of national support for their erratic and consuming noise rock. They’ve been described as aggressive or dark, but the subtleties of their intentions can get lost in the pure volume. To paraphrase the band, Duggan’s effected guitar is what they build from and around, as Faulkner and bassist Daniel Fox mess over or groove under the guitar’s clinical, throbbing noise. Kiely describes himself as “lost in the middle”. Duggan got “loads of pedals and started to get interested in noise guitar that way, it wasn’t about coming at it in an aggressive way.” “It’s guitar sounds and textures, rather than a guitar line,” adds Faulkner. You’d be hard pressed to call any of Duggan’s contributions riffing – his playing has as much in common with experimental soundscapes or industrial music. Fox’s bass cushions the instrumental setup, overdriven “to make up for the fact that Al isn’t playing any notes”, and through its own manipulated sound completes the

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atmospherics. Fox and Dara Kiely met at school, and met Duggan through rugby. Kiely played “Joey Castillo, Queens of the Stone Agekind of drums” but when they decided to form a band and needed a vocalist he volunteered: “I took up singing, and now I listen to Abba.” Now a drummer short, Faulkner had to be “kidnapped and brought over to the northside” after Fox helped record for We Arrive Alive. The EP is a continuation of the style of In My Head, their debut single, but recorded in live takes, to capture “the way it sounds in the space.” You have to squint your ears slightly to hear the lyrics, which Kiely culls “whenever someone says something I find interesting or stupid” (following Peaks’ James Hyland’s example, who records stray sounds for his music). It’s part of a short-term plan to not appear angsty or mopey: “ . . . because [the sound] can be interpreted as dark and very serious, we make everything else a bit more light, more silly to get it balanced.” Even their bandname is a joke about Duggan’s would-be nickname, not any sort of intended irony or sarcasm: “Girl Band Duggan and Rope-burn Fox,” Kiely pauses as everyone realises the impossibility of relating an inside joke. “It was such a slow night.” “There’s also a small obsession with Countdown,” says Faulkner. “Can I have a vowel please, Carol, from your wall,” is the line haunting the start on Handswaps, the last track on France 98. Kiely reveals he left the lyric writing 20 minutes before recording, and I mention Nirvana and My Bloody Valentine wrote lyrics in the studio, too. “Oh god, not another Nirvana reference . . .” France 98 EP is available for free download at http://girlbanddublin.bandcamp.com/


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TN2 MAGAZINE BRAND NEW WEBSITE!

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LAUNCHES THURSDAY 22ND NOVEMBER


SEX/OP

THE ONE WITH THE WORLD’S CLEANEST DUVET MONDAY I wake up already depressed that it is Monday, a sad fact that is only made worse when I remember where I am. A twin room in a dank apartment, covered by a measly cover-less single duvet. It being my third year in college I know already that it could be Christmas before I pilfer another duvet cover from home. I promise myself to stop drinking tea in bed to keep it stain-free. My room-mate snores less than three feet away from me and I curse the recession that has me sharing a room. Nearly no masturbation opportunities now.

“MY BRIEF SCORE WITH A LAD IN AN IRONIC HAWAIIAN SHIRT WAS OVERSHADOWED BY MY SEXY CHIPPER ON THE WAY HOME. SALT AND VINEGAR? YES PLEASE” TUESDAY Couldn’t sleep last night and my plans to cheer myself up in the shower fall through when I feel how miserably weak the water pressure is here. Barely a tickle. My sense of female empowerment wanes as I think about how much I am craving cock. The words “craving cock” resonate around my head as I shampoo my hair. Does anyone actually say that? Did I really just say that? No, no, I don’t need a man. I just crave a comfortable bed and a properly pleasing shower head. I hum away under the dribble, trying not to think of my ex, who had both a memory foam mattress and a properly pleasing head. WEDNESDAY Workman’s Club after Pav. I get hammered and the memory is patchy, but between the five of us we hope we have it covered. Sarah and Brian scored. So did Séan and Brian by the looks of the photos. Lisa went off with a lad and has reported an excellent night was had. My brief score with a lad in an ironic Hawaiian shirt was overshadowed by my sexy chipper on the way home. Salt AND vinegar? Yes please.

ART: THE NEW ONLINE COMMODITY ART

For a while on my Facebook page, under the Sponsors section, I kept seeing an ad for “Tony O’Connor – Equine Art”. I never clicked on the link, though I did ponder the somewhat disconcerting virtual archive of all my online activity through which Facebook identified my passions in life so accurately – as it happens, I am both a horse maniac and an art lover. The ad only incited a very remote interest in me until recently, when

“LET US NOT BE UNDER ANY ILLUSIONS --- THE ART MARKET IS A REAL BUSINESS WITH BIG MONEY INVOLVED” I saw two remarkable horse portraits in a commercial art gallery. I recognized the author’s name and thought “Wow, this guy is a serious artist!” Now, perhaps I am just behind the times and not as into internet technologies as I should be, but it seems to me that good art and online advertising just do not go well together. For one thing, a painting is not the kind of bargain one is likely to buy spontaneously. Let us not be under any illusions – the art market is a real business, with big money involved, but advertising it on the sideline of a webpage like a discount on

“GOOD ART AND INTERNET ADVERTISING JUST DO NOT GO WELL TOGETHER”

SEX OP

THURSDAY Wake up face-down on my pillow with a mouth like the Sahara. Sarah is sardined beside me. We physically have to peel our flesh apart to get out of bed. The cover-less duvet has been kicked to the ground. I bitch about the unsuccessful night and when the roommate tells me that she’s going home on Friday I vow to get my bit at last. FRIDAY It’s Pav Friday and early on I spot a lad I fancied all of last year. I’m only talking to him a little while before I realise that he is a whole lot less cool than I had imagined. Almost dorky. This empowers me to invite him home with me and to my delight he agrees. We are at the skinny-jean unbuttoning stage when he reveals that he has no condoms. He makes up for this with some excellent manual action though and it’s only fair to return the favour. Mid-wank I remember the duvet and my vow to keep it clean, but I feel him tensing and it’s too late to put down a towel. To my luck he turns out to be a fist-dribbler so it’s grand. I get a tissue and suggest we get some chipper.

Submit your anonymous sex diary www.tinyurl.ie/tn2sexdiary 26 // TN2MAGAZINE.IE

Tesco sausages just takes away the aura. Moreover, unless you are a collector well-versed in your favourite artists, an image on the screen only gives you a very approximate impression. . Scale, texture, relief, finish, and real colour can only be appreciated in the physical presence of the work (even when it is a photographic print), and constitute a great extent of its impact. That is why people travel to famous galleries instead of just buying a catalogue, and is the essential motivation behind owning an artwork. On the other hand, some artists have for decades been trying to break down the aura of exclusivity that surrounds the art world. This idea might indeed appeal to a painter like Tony O’Connor, who says on his Facebook page: “Welcome to my arty page . . . mostly horses . . . the odd cow, a few birds, a lot of bad jokes, drawings, and well, a bit of craic.” And it might be a perfect avenue for artists who are just starting out in the art market, but it can only be a temporary substitute for exhibiting live. The internet does give us an unprecedented access to an ocean of images, and it is a truly wonderful thing to be able to amass your own virtual gallery on Pinterest, but that may be as far as it goes. Gabija Purlytė


TRAVEL

DON’T CRY FOR ME, ANDALUCIA

WORDS Henry Longden

Seville’s slow, sleepy daytime streets are lined with orange trees and carpeted with their fruit. Winding through the al fresco plazas, the evening will sluggishly bring a drop in temperature and a rise in energy as the tapas bars burst with spirited locals, sweet families and beautiful couples. Food and drink will be slapped down at the speed you’re expected to order and finish it as you give way to the next punters and move on to the next bar. In the wee hours, once the iberico ham has been put away, move to one of the lively chupitos and modestly crown that night of indulgence with a pint-sized mojito. Tomorrow you’ll appreciate the slow start.

WHAT TO DO . . . The Bull Ring – You undoubtedly have an opinion about the horrendous or beautiful tradition of bullfighting, but while you’re here . . . sshhh. The season finished in September but you can still take a tour around the Real Mastranza. Palace and Cathedral –The Palace Gardens are as extravagant and Andalucían as you could wish for. Next door visit the world’s third-largest cathedral (free on Sundays) and burial place of Christopher Columbus. If you can hold off until next reading week then visit for Semana Santa, or Holy Week (falling on 24th March). The city is alive with brass bands following huge robed processions and floats depicting The Passion. This is truly one of the top festivals in the world.

WHERE TO EAT . . . Los Coloniales Plaza Cristo De Burgos Enjoy a ‘copa’ of beer as you wait for a seat at one of Seville’s best tapas bars. The classics are great but what really sets this place apart is its rich sauces and stewed meat.

WHERE TO DRINK . . .

Bar Alfalfa Calle Candilejo This friendly but minuscule bar serves up an Italian-inspired selection of tapas. It’s best to stick to the daily specials, although the bresaola is incredible.

Coming in Issue 5

DERRY

Cityguide If it’s your last night and you still haven’t seen some Flamenco, pay (the Cultural Centre has the genuine thing for €13). If you’d rather not, then immerse yourself in as many of the city’s bars and restaurants and, with any luck, she’ll come to you.

Bar Garlochi Calle Boteros Sit back in surroundings that can only be described as your German nanny’s living room. Prove your intellectual worth and discuss Marxist themes in Amsterdam’s homage to Germany’s finest 20th Century playwright. SAGE ADVICE

3 GREAT FREE ACTIVITIES IN SEVILLE • • •

Head over to the massive Charco de la Pava Flea market and flick through the masses of useless junk, cheap knockoffs and stolen goods. Otherwise, check out Feria del Belén Christmas market which runs until December 23rd. The beautiful architecture that houses Seville’s Museo de Bellas Arte will take you aback: inside you will find a couple of El Grecos and Velázquezs among a great collection of Seville’s “Golden Era” paintings. The Torre del Oro is one of Seville’s most distinctive landmarks; the watchtower regally overlooks the city and now houses a maritime museum. It’s also a good way to make sure your day isn’t entirely about eating and drinking.

Make sure you buy your oranges from the shops. Bite into one of the fruit lying in the gutter and immediately regret it. The sour juices will make you weep. The trees do not have the necessary nutrients to properly fruit and the skins have been sprayed to punish looting birds.


F A C E S

JAMIE TOUR GUIDE

TO TCD STUDENTS: “MAKE THE MOST OF YOUR TIME HERE”


FOOD // F ILM // M US I C // GAM E S LITER AT U R E // TECHNO LO GY // STAGE

REVIEWS

FEATURING ASADOR BY DECLAN JOHNSTON


REVIEWS

ASADOR HADDINGTON

FOOD Booking Asador on Haddington Road can be quite an ordeal. I asked for Tuesday at 7:30. “Perfect. The bookings director will ring you to confirm.” Wait. “What?” Too late, gone. Late on a Sunday night, the phone rings, “I’m afraid we can’t do 7:30. We can only do 7:00 or 8:00.” Only open a week, Asador is clearly in high demand. Eager to secure a place, I took 7:00. Tuesday at 7:00, I was still on a bus. On the phone again. Grovelling apologies, “Can you possibly hold the table?” “We’ll try.” At 7:15, panic-stricken, we dash into . . . an empty dining room. Well, there were six diners. And seven staff: a maître d’, a bartender, waiters, the manager, and presumably the famed “bookings director”. In the throes of youth, Asador have an exuberant overattentiveness that is the hallmark of that student in your class who is, at least platonically, in love with your lecturer. I almost fell over as one of them emerged from nowhere to push my seat in behind me. And then the paperwork began – bulging books and A3 cards arranged across the table; I nearly initialled, signed and dated them all out of instinct. I looked down at the menus and glanced up again at my dining partner to catch a first reaction, only to be ambushed by yet another waiter who had sprung from the shadows. “Would you like a drink?” “Arghhhh! Erm, I mean no. Thank you.” This was less restaurant, more crack FBI training course, fending off mechanised cardboard cut-out waiters who suddenly flew up from behind tables with helpful suggestions. Asador claim their signature is “theatre” and they invite you to witness the cooking. An asador is a South American grill and the impressive seven-foot beast is on display. It’s at the back of the room though, and can only be seen through an opening in the wall. I

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went in for a closer look, but it felt only as if I was getting in the way of the waiters scooping up fresh orders. In fact, the restaurant really fails to make the most of their “concept.” The décor is stylish but unremarkable: there is little to relate it to the food being prepared. There is a very slick bar, impressively stocked, but there is a notable absence of fire everywhere. The food though has substance. The menu is restricted, but what you get will be done well. My 8oz rump steak had a lovely char-coating and extra cooking time is worthwhile to absorb more smoky flavour. It came with nicely seasoned roast potato wedges as well as onion and tomato fresh from the asador. My dining partner opted for a grilled half lobster. Char-grilled lobster has a slightly tougher texture but it makes an intensely flavoursome, delicious meal. The drinks are attentively crafted, a “passion mojito” mixed minty flavours with real passion and mango juice: it’s obvious the bartender knows what she is doing. We opted to share a chocolate cheesecake sundae too, which took an uncomfortably long time to produce. Interestingly, the restaurant filled up gradually and the staff struggled to serve everyone when it did. Asador is expensive (our total in the end was €68) but it justifies itself with good fare with the exception of the dessert, which did not merit the €8 price for its quality or quantity. Asador has a lot going for it – the concept and food are very strong – yet you cannot help feeling they haven’t realised their full potential. The staff will acclimatise and the menus will be compacted, but they have failed to really make the most of what it is that makes them unique, the asador. Declan Johnston

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30 // TN2MAGAZINE.IE


REVIEWS

GAMBIT MICHAEL

FILM The advertisement posters for Gambit read “Screenplay by Joel Coen and Ethan Coen.” Thus the viewer awaits another promising film from the witty, eccentric creators of Fargo, The Big Lebowski and No Country for Old Men. However, unlike these films, the action is not directed by the Coen brothers but by one Michael Hoffman, best known for nineties romantic comedies such as One Fine Day and A Midsummer Night’s Dream. Thus the mistakes of Gambit begin. Art curator Harry Deane (Colin Firth) has always been at the mercy of his boss, Lionel Shahbander (Alan Rickman). Eventually, he decides to take revenge with the help of his friend, Major Wingate (Tom Courtenay – Doctor Zhivago, The Golden Compass). The plan is to con Lionel into buying a fake Monet painting produced by the Major, who is an expert at art impersonation, thus attaining millions of Lionel’s dollars for themselves. They require the assistance of Texan rodeo worker PJ Puznowski (Cameron Diaz) to carry out their masterful plan. However, from the very beginning, things do not go according to plan. To begin with, the film relies too much on the audience finding the characteristics the cast members are normally associated with absolutely hilarious. Yes, Colin Firth can play the awkward British man, and Diaz as the brash all-American young woman is perfectly credible. However, there is nothing particularly appealing or funny about their characters. In fact, they are almost irritating, and the pairing of an uptight gentleman with a free-spirited woman is hardly original. Stanley Tucci as Martin Zaidenweber, who is also an art curator after Harry’s job, is one actor who manages to bring occasional comic relief. Tucci reprises his role from such films as The Devil Wears

HOFFMAN

Prada and Shall We Dance as the expert in his field. However, he is given little screen time. In addition, Alan Rickman, who echoes his famous “bad guy” role from Die Hard and the Harry Potter series, is not credibly “evil” enough for all the complaining Harry does about him – yes, he is not the most pleasant boss in the world, but at least Harry has a job in this economy! As the comedy stems, for the majority, from Harry Deane repeatedly being put into embarrassing and physically painful situations, one can’t help but feel Gambit expresses nostalgia for a type of slapstick comedy that is simply irrelevant and insufficient for today’s audience. The comedies that have been made in the last few years are about young people who want to throw parties and be popular (Superbad, Project X), high school reunions (American Pie Reunion, 21 Jump Street), the surprises that come with having a baby (Knocked Up, What To Expect When You’re Expecting), or just the horrible consequences of getting too drunk (The Hangover, The Hangover 2). They are no longer about extreme, ridiculous situations where we laugh at the characters, but rather about the common experiences that bind audience and character together. Between this and the fact that this is a remake of a 1966 film, it feels horribly out of date and out of touch with a contemporary audience. Hoffman attempts to make up for this by packing his film with a star-filled crew and cast (and monkeys and a lion), but the chemistry and comedy are simply not there. Gambit is by no means this year’s worst film. There are some heartwarming moments and you will laugh on occasion, even if it is only out of sympathy, or to make the silence of the audience more bearable. But it is likely to be soon forgotten. Deirdre Molumby

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REVIEWS

CRYS TAL CASTLES III FICTION // POLYDOR

MUSIC Although they are now three albums deep, Alice Glass and Ethan Kath’s decision to name their band after an Atari game still makes a lot of sense. They are still as 8-bit-sprinkled and glitchingrained today as they were when the explosive first self-titled arrived in 2008, albeit now with a more crisply refined sound. Meanwhile, both the violence and fragility of the music has only increased, and with (III) the aesthetics of failure and mania are more present than ever before. Depth has always existed in Crystal Castles’ music, but never such heightened emotional depth. To look to the words of Alice Glass: “Oppression is a theme, in general . . . A lot of bad things have happened to people close to me since (II) and it’s profoundly influenced my writing as I’ve realized there will never be justice for them.” Oppression, of course, ultimately must get negated into another energy form as is human nature; this is what the erratic duo must be trying to achieve with their negative zeal on this effort. The album cover even sports the iconic image of Fatima al-Qaws, a Muslim woman, holding her son after he was exposed to tear gas during a street demonstration in Yemen, and further emphasises their crusade for expression.

Glass and Kath are still projecting an exoskeleton onto the band, in order to keep their music and personal lives separate: Glass utilising her resolute wailing-banshee persona, and Kath excelling in his role as the recluse behind the synthesiser. With so little known about them, for all intents and purposes, Crystal Castles are the fictions they have created, but we’re getting glimpses that they may be revealing themselves now. Imagistic mystique and detachment ramps up public interest, but with CC the gimmick is a bonus to, not compensation for, the music which has always stood strong. For this album, the band have actually traded in all of their old gear to rebrand their experimental electro with a new arsenal of noises and craft a new soundscape. It’s noticeable straight away, and this unfamiliarity renders it much less immediate than their previous work. But it proves more rewarding, because of the increased and tangible sentimental attachment to the subject matter – there is more of their true selves in it. Crystal Castles at this point in their career are relentless in their distinct cathartic delivery, but it is certainly harder to get up and dance to emotionally destroyed dance music. Dean Healy

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SKY FERREIRA // GHOST EP Sky Ferreira is only 20. It’s quite depressing. Talented and innovative, the young American is making a name for herself as a shiny new star in the pop cyber sphere. Her second EP, Ghost, delivers the expected electro-pop tunes (in the vein of the new Lykke Li or our own Roisin Murphy) but, in an interesting twist, offers some folky slow sets too. Opening track Sad Dream is a far cry from her trademark pop but somehow works nicely. It’s all very 1950s American suburbia – quiet resilience in the face of pervasive despondency. Similarly Ghost is retro-melancholia served with a side of teen angst – but isn’t quite as wellexecuted and the novelty factor sadly has been used up on the intro. Thankfully, there’s a handful of some of the pop anthems to serve as a reminder of what she does best. Everything Is Embarrassing has a great beat, with the piano adding some distinct punctuation to her slow, soft drawl, while Lost in My Bedroom and Red Lips exude vivacity and demand repeat plays. Overall it’s a bizarre mix of tunes but intriguing nonetheless. Alana Ryan ie.myspace.com/skyferreira

TY SEGALL // TWINS Ty Segall is one busy boy – he’s released one album of fuzzed-out 60s bliss a year since his recorded debut, in addition to countless B-sides, EPs and splits. He must have finally given up sleep, as 2012 saw three full LPs: Slaughterhouse, released as Ty Segall Band, was a foray into heavier 70s influences, while Hair, his collaboration with fellow San Franciscans White Fence, turned decisively on psychedelia; now we have Twins under his solo moniker. Painstakingly faithful, delightfully catchy, sloppy sounding but exquisitely crafted, traditional but varied garage rock – he’s not so much a revivalist as he is a preservationist – and this again is simply the good time the Ty-tag promises. To describe it as more of the same is as accurate as it is misleading, because while the catalogues of the 60s and 70s are finite, they’re also huge. Segall will be dead long before he can mine them dry, even at his pace. Gheorghe Rusu vimeo.com/48886710 32 // TN2MAGAZINE.IE


REVIEWS

II.I ASSASSIN’S CREED III UBISOFT

A MONTH OF SOMEDAYS C ATHERINE CLEARY LONDUBH

GAMES Assassin’s Creed 3 demands time. To appreciate what Ubisoft have accomplished with the fifth title in the series, it is not enough to stay on the story path. Joy in movement has always been the main draw of Assassin’s Creed, and this installment may be a less cohesive experience than Ezio’s first outing, but it embraces this basic joy more so than any other entry. The multitude of side-stories and requests to explore every hidden cavern make it difficult to appreciate the game without putting in some serious hours. In terms of structure, not much is new about Assassin’s Creed 3. The missions and combat are much the same, and while the story pulls out a few new tricks – like switching lead characters – its Dan Brown conspiracies are in keeping with the series. The conspiracy-minded stuff is not particularly engaging, but as with the previous games it allows for a story to be wound around interesting people and events. When things get outside of the constructed and into the natural, the game significantly shifts in tone, with Red Dead Redemption being an appropriate comparison. Both require the player to slow down and embrace expansive beauty. A climb of the tallest trees equals the most lavish ar-

chitecture of the series to date for tactile exploration. Jumping between branches, for hunting or various collectables, is perhaps the best use of the free-running mechanics that the series has been built on. Homestead missions obsess over the ordinary. The demands of the community are what matters, as well as your place within it. Ubisoft have in most ways equalled the scale and detail of Rockstar’s epic western, but fail severely in comparison to that game’s use of horses. Luckily horses are rarely required for missions but when they are, they acutely frustrate, replacing fluid motion with graceless stutter. It gets worse when computer-controlled characters are asked to follow. The tombs of the previous games are missed, but the superb naval missions, along with the underground mazes under Boston and New York, go some way towards making up for it. The story set-pieces satisfy, but at its heart Assassin’s Creed 3 is an unusually peaceful experience, that is more concerned with the veneration of the natural world than that of the relative merits of The Templars and Assassins. If, in the past, you have been stymied by the long prologue, or by the peculiarities of stealth, another look is recommended. Paul Casey

BOOKS

LITERATURE Learning to play an instrument or to speak a new language. Taking up a new sport or starting your own business. These are the kinds of things we all dream of doing. Someday. This is a book about making these somedays today. Over six months, journalist Catherine Cleary takes time to take up six new ventures: playing the flute, growing vegetables on an allotment, Bikram yoga, barefoot running, learning Mandarin Chinese, and selling her baking. Each challenge is 30 days, a little bit a day – whether it’s breathing exercises for flute, digging on the allotment or going for a run. Cleary writes openly about her experience – she never makes light of any of her tasks, yet she does them without moaning. Written in journal form, the book gives an interesting account of Cleary’s experiences and the right amount of background information – she shows the beauty of the Chinese language without weighing the reader down with grammar rules. A touching account of the loss of a close friend during her project adds to the sense of time being precious. Ultimately this is an inspiring book, showing that hard work can be rewarding, and with a bit of determination you can achieve your goals. While I don’t see myself taking up Bikram yoga (in a studio heated to 40 degrees) or running around Stephen’s Green barefoot anytime soon, this book definitely made me think more about how I use my time, and what I’d like to do with it. If you really want to do something, you’ll find the time. After all, how many hours are wasted on the internet, on mobile phones or watching television? Don’t wait for those New Year Resolutions (they never happen anyway) – why not start something new today? It’s time to do the things you’ve been dreaming of. Make now count. Jenny Duffy

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REVIEWS

Q U I E T LY OWEN MCCAFFERT Y ABBEY

THEATRE

//

PEACOCK

STAGE

STAGE Quietly, a new piece by Owen McCafferty, and directed by Jimmy Fay, is an intimate exploration of the violent turbulence of northern Ireland during the 1970s, and the ongoing challenge of reconciliation and forgiveness after a period that left so many emotional scars. McCafferty’s text is sparse, focusing on a single encounter be-

the Polish barman, injects humor into a play that would otherwise be relatively heavy throughout. He is also a reminder that Ireland is not the only country to have faced political problems, stating boldly that “this place doesn’t know the rest of the world exists.” While the performances had great authenticity for the most part,

tween two strangers who fought on opposite political sides at the tender age of sixteen, when they were engulfed in a world of violence they didn’t fully understand. Set in the bar that changed both men’s lives, this piece raises many important questions about human nature and our ability (or inability) to move on from the past and to reach a point of reconciliation or resolution. For a country such as Ireland that is so embedded in political bitterness and hostility, Fay’s piece is an important one. It displays the long-lasting emotional effects of such turmoil, the challenges of overcoming this resentment, and reaching a point of understanding and forgiveness within society. O’Kane and Conlon deliver emotionally truthful performances with great subtlety, adding to the naturalism of the piece. O’Kane’s physicality is particularly noteworthy, capturing a man who seems almost crippled by regret, bitterness and loneliness. Robert Zawadzk, who plays the role of

there were certain moments of staging that seemed unnatural and rehearsed. Also, while certain lengthy silences between actors were engaging and dramatic, others became overly prolonged, which gave the audience an opportunity to disengage. However, it being a preview, these were all minor issues that I am certain will be polished and tightened during the run. Alyson Cummins’s set is an accurate replica of a pub one might find anywhere in Ireland. The authenticity and precise attention to detail added greatly to the sense of naturalism on stage. However, a small issue of logicality would be the fact that it only ever features two punters, Ian and Jimmy, which is relatively unrealistic in Ireland. This conceptual flaw ultimately weakened the production, providing an implausible backdrop for what were two convincing and tender stories. Quietly runs on the Abbey’s Peacock Stage until 15th December. Fionnuala Gygax

BAMBOO PARLIAMENT

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FOOD Walking into BamBoo on the corner of Parliament Street and Dame Street, translators come to mind. Creative and artistic translators are perennially downgraded to mere artisans, their names forgotten. Fusion restaurants in contrast are revered and respected culinary translators, crossing cultural divides. BamBoo is the Salamanca Group’s venture into Japanese food in a tapas style, an idea with obvious potential: bite-size Japanese cuisine is arguably tapas by another name. The restaurant is lined by blood red seating and a mahogany bar, while chandeliers, fairy lights, lanterns, mirrors and plastic greenery drooping from the ceiling clutter the central space. Standing in the midst of it all is a friendly waiting staff. My dining partner and I started with grilled ribs and pork belly wrapped in a coconut milk pancake. The ribs were as ribs are, tasty and sticky, though the pork belly was lukewarm and the pancake brought nothing worthwhile. The house special BamBoo box – essentially a bento box of tapas – contained tempura vegetables, teriyaki beef, sushi, duck spring rolls and a prawn salad all finely prepared without excelling. The other main, a well executed yellow curry, featured delicately cooked squash, sweet potato and tofu. Japanese whiskey would greatly enhance the drinks menu (inexplicably printed in comic sans) which is limited to bland Kirin lager and one variety of sake. BamBoo has strengths – eating well for little is possible (the limited Early Bird is €15) but it suffers the fate of the literary translator: there is little memorable in its creativity. Declan Johnston

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REVIEWS

HOTLINE MIAMI DENNATON

22CANS

TECHNOLOGY Curiosity: It’s not a game, so what is it? Not long ago, Peter Molyneux, one of the more divisive figures in the games industry, jumped ship from Electronic Arts. Now ensconced at experimental start-up 22cans, he has delivered Curiosity (iOS and Android) to the world. Curiosity is a cube hanging in empty space, made up of billions of smaller cubes. Participants get to peck away at the smaller cubes, revealing layer after layer of the uber-cube. Why? Well, at the very centre lies a “life-changing” secret, which only one person will get to see. This being a Molyneux production, the whiff of hype lies heavily around Curiosity. The first few days saw the servers congest to a crawl, followed by some speedy patching. Impressive for an app that marries social media with mass futility. To be fair, Curiosity has other features. Clicking earns coins that can be spent to see where Facebook friends (the ones without any shame) have clicked and where on the cube they last were. Some have taken to scrawling messages as they excavate, and others may just drop in to see the decorations on the latest layer. Still . . . that’s it. Once you run out of curiosity, you’ll find yourself running out of Curiosity. It’s free, so drop in and maybe take a click or two. But remember that it’s not really a game. It’s just an experiment, and you’re the subject. Ciaran McGrath

SILENCE PAT

COLLINS

GAMES Hotline Miami is aggressive. Hotline Miami is uncompromising. Hotline Miami is stressful and disorienting. Hotline Miami is one of the best games out this year. Despite it’s trappings as a top-down action game, Hotline Miami’s almost absurd difficulty reveals it to be truly a puzzle game at heart. Make no mistake, this isn’t some ponderous, chin-stroking think-em-up. The speed at which things can go wrong in Hotline Miami, and the fragility of the player character means gleaning the optimal route through an environment soon becomes the objective, rather than actually traversing it. Carrying out your chosen plan of action feels great. Bursting through a door to knock over an enemy, flinging a piece of broken pipe at the other, grabbing the third to use as a human shield against his allies: the moment to moment of Hotline Miami is remarkably satisfying.

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CURIOSITY

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GAMES

Everything about Hotline Miami oozes style. Not chic, modern, lustrous style but grimy, skeezy, white-suits-and-goldchains style. The game evokes a cocaine-fuelled fever dream. The pulsing synth-pop soundtrack, and slightly off-kilter pixel art aesthetic, perfectly complements the subject matter of a gun-forhire hitman slowly losing his mind as he carries out increasingly bloody contracts. This is a game that has to be experienced. It’s difficult and unforgiving, but that’s what makes it. Just like the junkies that inhabit its world, you’ll come back again and again. Hugo Fitzpatrick

FILM Pat Collins is considered one of Ireland’s bright sparks. Successful in the documentary genre, he appears to have half-moved on, to the quasi-documentary. Silence follows sound engineer Eoghan Mac Giolla Bhríde as he strives to aurally document the landscapes in search of those that are free of man-made noise. The characters may be actors and the scenes scripted but Collins’ piece is enigmatic, beautiful, and has a pervasive meaning that seems to be off-the-page, and out-of-reach, throughout. Ireland’s landscapes are captivating and are exposed as the backbone to the film and the protagonist’s journey into his self. The magic is in the nature, in contrast to his interviews which do not benefit from the lack of context. Framed as impromptu conversations,

dialogues with locals seem clumsy and forced, especially when juxtaposed with the documentary-style scenes of exploration through Ireland’s countryside. In his interviews with characters he encounters on his journey, Eoghan’s loaded questions and philosophising are contrived, but for anyone born after the 60s, this is not a surprise considering the topic. That silence only exists before we are born and after we die is an example of one of many attempted aphorisms, the sort which the film hopelessly tries to flaunt, but which end up being just as empty as they sound. The scenery and cinematography are, at times, stunning. Ironically and perhaps frustratingly for Collins, though, the film does best when, in these moments, it says nothing at all. Out on DVD now Henry Longden

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UNTIL NEXT TIME ...

... SOME EVENTS AND ACTIVITIES TO FILL THE CULTURAL VOID

Tuesday 20th November ART Tangible Seconds // Group exhibition by 2012 Visual Art graduates Monster Gallery and Studios FREE (until 12 December)

Wednesday 21st November GAMES Game City Nights Tour Science Gallery €5

Thursday 22nd November MUSIC Anseo 10th Anniversary Show // Hello Moon, Mumblin’ Deaf Ro, Biggles Flys Again & Drunken Boat Camden Street 20.00 // FREE

Friday 23rd November ART Sidney Nolan // Ned Kelly Series IMMA FREE (until 27th January)

Saturday 24th November FILM Death of a Superhero Preview followed by Q&A and Animation Workshop with TRIXTER VFX Supervisor Allessandro Cioffi Light House Cinema 18.30 // €7.50

Sunday 25th November FOOD Homage to the Pig // UpDn Pop-up Restaurant event celebrating pork recipes Ormonde Wine Bar Book by e-mailing Kate@updn.ie

Monday 26th November ART Chanteh // Tribal textiles from Iran and The Paradise [38] by Eva Rothschild The Douglas Hyde Gallery FREE (until 30 January 2013)

Tuesday 27th November DEBATE Four Angry Men // Fintan O’Toole, Nick Webb, David McWilliams and Shane Ross Bord Gais Theatre 19.30 // €25

Wednesday 28th November LITERATURE Writers in the Gutter Keith Ridgway // Hawthorn and Child The Gutter Bookshop 18.30-19.30 // FREE

Thursday 29th November ART In a Land Far Away // Video night part of Stories to Wake up With Project The Market Studios, 19.00 // FREE

Friday 30th November MUSIC A Lazarus Sou l The Joinery, Dublin 7 8pm // €8 // BYOB

Saturday 1st December MUSIC Wild Nothing Workman’s Club 20.00 // €14.50


THE FINAL SAY Neasa

Conneally

“YOU DON’T GET TO DECIDE FOR SOMEONE ELSE WHAT IS DEGRADING” The most striking thing about Helmut Newton’s series of nude portraits is how strong and bold his models are. Despite being naked, they are not weak or vulnerable but seem to be taking charge of their sexuality. This debate over whether nudity can be classed as art or pornography still has particular relevance today when more and more highly sexualised imagery is becoming increasingly commonplace in society. One example of nudity being used as a form of artistic expression and entertainment is the burlesque movement. To counter the common criticism that it is just stripping with better shoes, proponents argue that it is not about providing sexual titillation to others, but about celebrating their own bodies. Indeed, its most famous star, Dita Von Teese, stated “I can’t agree with the assessment about erotic dancing or porn, because even if you step into a typical strip club, you don’t get to decide for someone else what is degrading.” Whether you agree with her or not, the burlesque movement claims to offer both its audience and participants more than the cheap thrill of naked flesh. However, you don’t just have to visit burlesque or strip clubs to see naked women: we are bombarded with overtly sexualised imagery just walking down the street. One of the most notorious examples of this is the posters and advertising used by American Apparel, which are lit and shot in such a way to invoke associations with softcore pornography. They have received widespread criticism from many, including the UK Advertising Standards Authority, for using photos of barely postpubescent girls wearing knee socks and with their legs wide open to sell overpriced and unflattering leotards and lycra. These adverts, which claim to use their own staff as models, almost uniformly feature women, but now just around the corner on College Green, Abercrombie and Fitch have joined in with images of a naked male torso on every carrier bag and memorably, on the façade of the entire building for several months. Three cheers for equality, I guess? We’re now so used to seeing imagery like this that we are less likely to question the fact that you can still pick up most tabloid newspapers and see young women completely topless on page three. This is now the focus

of a petition that wants to ban page three from The Sun, which is the biggest-selling paper in the UK and also enjoys huge readership of its Irish edition. The creators of the petition, which has over 50,000 signatures, argue that a sexist throwback like page three has no place in a family newspaper (although the description of some of The Sun’s content as “news” is debatable) and that you would never hear “And now let’s look at Courtney (21, from Warrington)’s bare breasts,” in the middle of the six o’clock news. Many people would argue that like Newton’s models or Dita Von Teese, these girls choose to take part and are fully complicit in this industry. They are inspired by the Katie Price/Jordans of the world that show them that they can become very rich and famous if they play the celebrity game right. However, by attributing fake quotes to the girls in the “News in Briefs” section, such as “Danni” responding to the discovery of the Higgs Boson with “I’ve often wondered how quarks and other sub-atomic particles gain mass!,” the Sun openly mocks these women: the joke being that a woman like that could never have a valid opinion on physics or politics or culture. This message that women are to be treated as nothing more than sex objects is hugely damaging, especially to young children, who easily can pick up the paper in their own homes. Many however would deride these complaints as just being from killjoy feminists and that it is all a bit of harmless fun, especially when children now have such easy access to hardcore pornography online and are more likely to be influenced by what they see in music videos. Is this true? Is increasingly sexual imagery inevitable in a changing society, and will banning page three make any difference at all, when Rihanna is still writhing in her knickers for her audience of young teenagers? Or is this nothing new? Newton’s photography was received with much the same furore and controversy in his day, yet it didn’t lead to the downfall of society. Maybe now, as in Newton’s day, such imagery is needed in order to open up discussions about what we feel is acceptable and healthy to be exposed to as part of our day-to-day lives, and indeed what effect this will have on how we view ourselves and others. Follow Neasa on Twitter: twitter.com/neasaconneally


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tn2 Magazine Issue 4, 2012-13