The first recommendation of the month is the Gjermund Larsen Trio from Norway teaming up with his Swedish neighbours Nordic for this rather wonderful… well, kind of polska, I suppose.

A friend, Charlotte Robinson, recommended it to Hannah, who recommended it to me, and I’ve been listening to it on loop since then.

Current Favourite Aspect:

How comically nordic they all look – particularly the guy on the harmonium (piano-type thing), who I’m sure was in A-Ha.  My brother and sister-in-law live in Sweden, and every once in a while I’ll get a YouTube link to a Swedish comedy show, and the first time I was watching this I was sort of expecting to see the camera pan to one of them with a viking helmet and big blonde pigtails.

Also the tune.

Second recommendation of the month: another local favourite, Bug Prentice.

Every time I see a Bug Prentice poster around town or on social media (they’re actually on the cover of next month’s local Nightshift magazine), I get a twinge of embarrassment, on account of having booked songwriter-in-chief Ally Craig to play a gig last year that proved to be a catalogue of disasters.  Ally was graceful as ever of course, in the face of a rainy miserable evening playing to a virtually empty room.  But as a sometime event promoter, I always worry more about not giving an act a decent-sized audience than I do about the money.

My ears might be deceiving me, but I do get the sense that Ally’s songs are actually getting a little more cheerful as the years roll by.  Parts of this EP even sound jaunty.  (Apologies, Ally, if this is a heinous slur.)

Current Favourite Track:

A joint-winner this time.  ‘Lee Miller’, because she’s always been a hero of mine.  And ‘Don’t Be That Dude’, because, seriously, don’t be.

The last of this month’s recommendations.  An old one, that I used to watch back when I was glued to MTV as a kid.  Oliver, one of the creators of Eulogise This recently reminded me about it, and how when I heard it I went away and tried to record my own version of it, so I could figure out how it was produced. Continue reading

It’s about time I recommended something other than music, I think.  I liked this film when I first saw it, but better than that, it’s just stayed with me.  I keep thinking of lines from it.

If you’re like me then you may watch this trailer and think: this is going to be a bit tediously macho, isn’t it.  Lots of David Mamet posing and Aaron Sorkin speeches and ‘You don’t understand how hard it is for me to be such an unusually gifted actor!’ shite.  Actually, there’s none of that.

It is basically the story of the day that the 2008 credit crisis hit, told from the perspective of a fictional investment bank, in pretty much real time.  There’s comparatively little philosophising, and much more people rapidly alternating between (a) staring at computer screens and going “Oh shit… ohh shit… that can’t be… ?!!  oh shit…” and (b) wondering out loud how much money other people in the company make.

Hopefully this isn’t a spoiler, but it doesn’t exactly have a happy ending.

Current Favourite Thing: Stanley Tucci talking about how he used to make bridges.  In fact, just Stanley Tucci generally.  And not just in this film.