It’s taken a while to realise that, for me at least, Laura Marling music only really starts to come alive on the 4th or 5th listen. And her new album has become one of those albums that I just listen to over and over and over again, which is not something I’ve had in a while. To the point where I wonder whether I’m becoming a bit sick of the album, but, yeah, I might as well put it on again, because, y’know… Continue reading

I haven’t read the book. Because, you know, all the tiny little words. And because I’m a terrible human being.

And I haven’t seen the Noomi Rapace / Michael Nyqvist Swedish film, or not all of it anyway. I saw some of it, and it looked fine, but not outstanding. (Sad to hear that Michael Nyqvist died on Tuesday by the way — only 56!)

And I know that my brother and sister-in-law who live in Sweden saw the 2011 film that I’m recommending (directed by David Fincher and starring Rooney Mara and Daniel Craig) and chuckled all the way through, because these Hollywood actors were wandering around Sweden speaking English. And all of them are putting on Swedish accents, except Stellan Skarsgård, who is Swedish, and Daniel Craig, who can’t be arsed.

But I think it’s a wonderful film. I loved it in the cinema, and H and I watched it again recently and I loved it just as much.

Continue reading

I love love love love love documentaries. And nobody makes documentaries better than the BBC. I can always tell if a documentary is American, because it’s clearly made by people who have no faith in their audience whatsoever.

Or… that used to be the case. Not so anymore. Continue reading

Thank you to Dan Allen for this wonderful recommendation. They may have names like characters from an 80s cop show but boy can they make these Child Ballads sound sweet.

This album was recorded a number of years ago, so apologies for being late to the party! I have been listening to it over and over.

(Although tell me it’s not just me that hears the line “Saddle me a milk white steed / Bridle me a pony” and thinks of this, right?)

Current Favourite Track:

Jonathan Gold is the first food critic to win the Pulitzer Prize for journalism. He is the polar opposite of the food critic Anton Ego in the film Ratatouille. He’s a lovely guy.

But this documentary about him, City of Gold, is about much more than food. It is in part a love letter to Los Angeles.

If you’re in a hurry, just skip to 1m 31s in, where he says:

People who come in for a couple of weeks, stay at a hotel in Beverley Hills, take in what they can get to within 10 minutes in the rented car, and explain to you what Los Angeles is…

Current Favourite Thing:

The fact that, as well as being a Pulitzer Prize-winning food critic, a fan of opera and a talented cellist, Jonathan Gold happened to be hanging out in the studio when Dr Dre recorded his seminal album ‘The Chronic’.

The first of this month’s recommendations.

One day I will expound upon my theories of Music vs Fashion Music – although not today. Basically, when I was a kid the music you listened to defined who you were and how you wanted to be seen. If you listened to Sonic Youth you were cool, and you ‘got it’. If you listened to Queen, like I did, you were not, and you didn’t. I don’t know if music is quite so important to kids now, as there’s so much more to choose from so much less money to promote the artists. I imagine it still is, to some extent. Continue reading