LLEWYN.

My sister and I saw a Sunday afternoon screening of Inside Llewyn Davis  at the BFI over Easter. It was raining outside and the screening room was so nice and warm, I swear, this was the perfect day to watch this particular movie. I’m not a Coen Brother’s zealot - I can’t say I’ve seen all their films but what I have seen (The Big Lebowski; No Country for Old Men and Fargo) I’ve liked, a lot. Centered on a struggling musician who essentially couch hops his way into the simple lives of others whilst navigating the mess that is his own, Inside Llewyn Davis at its core is about chasing the dream, maybe the American Dream, but unlike its oscar contending biopic counterparts, this tale has less of a shine to it.

Llewyn, a twenty/thirty-something would-be chain-smoking (if he could afford it) out of work musician, is still looking for his big break in the music world. He’s lost his partner - the Garfunkel to his Simon - but he hasn’t lost his ambitions to perform, and more importantly get paid doing it.  Throughout the film we meet the people in his life, mainly old friends and family, but his interaction with both will leave you wondering how on earth he’s been allowed to mooch off the poor souls for so long. He’s not particularly charming or even nice. For the most part he’s sardonic,  a little pretentious and almost always foul-mouthed. However is he the way he is as a result of his circumstance? Maybe, probably yes. By the end you’ll understand why he is the way he is, where his frustrations are born from, because life is essentially unfair, frustrating and wholly disappointing for the majority of us who don’t get to live our dreams. One scene in particular showcased this; after his ‘final’ performance, Llewyn steps off the stage and in a moment, the likeness of Bob Dylan steps onto it. It just so happens that ‘someone’ from “the Times”  is in the audience –  in a scene prior we’re led to believe that his admission of defeat could in fact lead to Llewyn’s big break; but we all know how Dylan’s career turned out.

I also came to the conclusion that I don’t care much for folk music. I get it, I really do (Davis’/Isaac’s voice is lovely and the guitar stuff is great), but no one says it better than John Goodman’s Dr John inspired jazz man Roland Turner and even Llewyn himself in the film: folk music is so familiar that it’s banal (a lot like most of life?). It’s a beautifully shot film. As expected (from the Coen films I’ve seen anyway) it boasts vast landscapes of nothing in particular, and a superb cast made up of current big  screen darlings, established revered heavyweights and (by hollywood standards) virtually unknown talent. We laughed a lot. The audience of about 30 people I was with laughed a lot, not least because Oscar Isaac in the lead role is fantastic and the script is funny. There’s also a couple of cats taken for the ride, nods to The incredible Journey  and Ulysses (one of the cat’s name nonetheless). Combine that with an almost life affirming road trip, this has all the ingredients of a man with plenty of opportunities to be that guy, that lucky few with a great story – but in the end never quite making it.

Inside Llewyn Davis llweyn img-insidellewyndavis_145757448067 inside-llewyn-davis-movie-image-6 680x478 inside_llewyn_davis inside-llewyn-davis-1 inside-llewyn-davis-movie-photo-17 inside-llewyn-davis

 

 

MØ + SPICE GIRLS

I love new music. However I hate new music covering old music and pretending that they did it first. So basically everything Pitball, Jason Derulo (until recently) and almost every artist has/is doing for the past decade and more.

This is different though. Maybe because the original is still a very clear memory for me and because of the cover. Clearly people of my immediate generation (mid 80s-mid 90s)  are now in influential positions. We’re all fully grown adults making choices and important decisions and steering industries to suit our tastes. You can see it in fashion and film and Music. We’re nostalgic for our youth because we’ve only or still are coming out of it. The 90s was our time of care-free existence. So naturally every other Buzzfeed survey is a reference to a film, song or character popular during that time. Move over Brat Pack, Back to the Future, Miami Vice, Transformers, Michael C Hall – everyone wants to talk about Clueless, Freak and Geeks, My So Called Life, Party of Five, Leo Dicaprio, Boybands and more importantly Girl Power. Specifically Spice Girls. I remember how I felt when I saw these girls perform on Top of the Pops. It’s a wonderful mesh of excitement, mania and pride. It’s not a guilty pleasure, never was. I have yet to see a Girl Band generate and command that kind of love in my lifetime … or even ever. Danish songstress, MØ‘s tribute cover to the Spice Girls won me over. I immediately connected to her and wanted to look into more of her music simply because I know, like many our age, shared that same glee for this group. It’s something that we will never experience again because it’s so much different when your that young. Its innocent and consuming adoration. Also I just love the cover photo. 

 

COCO QUADRON

Is not her name… but whatever she’s just on a different level to most young singers out there at the moment. One glorious half of the Danish duo Quadron, Coco is by far one of the best leading ladies of now. Which is saying something looking at the talent around today. But her voice, her burgeoning style (albeit the small print in securing an american record deal) and her stage presence is effortless. The Scandi’s are kind of winning in life right now. 

Watch Quadron’s new album video teaser and fall in love with Coco’s (and producer and multi-talented instrumentalist Robin) awesomeness. 

111-gggg

Coco O. at Cameo Coco-600x399 coco-o QUDRON quadron_billboard_650_13 quadron-favorite-star-video-600x337 Quadron-Neverland

 

photos: www.eurowoman.dk | singersroom.com | www.cmj.com | www.billboard.com | cargocollective.com |