Thursday, September 3, 2020

Isolation: Day 173


A couple weeks ago, my good friend Jacob sent me a link to a band called Skywave's album killerrockandroll on Apple Music. It took me until late last week to get around to it, and when I did, my first reaction was apprehension. I liked Skywave quite a bit, but they sounded an awful lot much like A Place to Bury Strangers, and because of that I had mixed feelings. I mean, it even sounded like Oliver Ackermann singing. A lot. I did some quick research and learned there was a good reason the two bands sounded so much alike: Skywave was Ackermann's precursor to APTBS, disbanding around 2003.

As a sound, killerrockandroll definitely scratches the APTBS itch, which is great, because ever since Exploding Head, I've been less than impressed with most of what Strangers release, so now I have a new place to go when I wear Head out and feel like something more.


Last week was fairly unproductive, writing-wise. I had a major breakthrough early one morning on my way to work, but after that, the days just took too much out of me. I have developed some kind of chronic, insanely painful back pain that manifests as sharp, horrible spasms when I do things like, well, move. It's not constant, but walking on eggshells and the fact that this hasn't gone away in almost a month has me more than a little afraid and totally exhausted mentally. Every day last week I came home, stared longingly at the spot at the kitchen table where I write during the afternoon, and then collapsed onto the sectional instead. As is my habit on afternoons such as this, I threw on a few movies, mostly conking out before they even began. Most were utterly forgettable. One was great, one good. 

First, the great one: Director George Popov's The Droving. I loved it.

This one fits into a subgenre I've kind of created in my head, "British Occult," and shares that tag with films like Colm McCarthy's Outcast, Julian Richards' Darklands, and Ben Wheatley's Kill List. The Droving follows Martin, an ex-military interrogator, home from the desert and looking for his sister, who has disappeared. I have a brief review up on my Horror Amino profile, as well as on my Letterbxd page. Needless to say, I really dug this film, and plan on going back and watching Popov's first film Hex, which stars much of the same cast as this one, and is currently included with Amazon Prime.

Next, the good one was Director Dan Bush's The Dark Red. Here's the trailer:

This one took a while to win me over. Being distributed by Dark Sky Films I should have given it the benefit of the doubt from the start, but I found it on Prime and, honestly, the movie algorithm they use has started to make their 'Recommends' list look like the ass end of the Horror Section you'd see at Hollywood video back in the early 2000s, when a ton of cheaply made crap horror flix began to fill out the shelves of the Horror section (Dark Night of the Scarecrow anyone? How about Alien vs. Hunter?). Anway, The Dark Red is pretty solid. The tone switches in the third act, and even though it's a bit jarring, that final act really turns everything that came before on its head. Which turns out to be both good for the viewer and the excitement factor in the flick, a little bad if you're really paying attention. Full disclosure, I nodded off a bit, so my issues may be mine, and I can't help wonder if I'd seen this under better circumstances, if it would have totally wowed me. One thing is for sure, the actor Bernard Setaro Clark blew me away with his supporting performance, and I'd definitely like to see more of him.


Deftones - Diamond Eyes

A Place to Bury Strangers - Exploding Head

Santogold - Eponymous

Emma Ruth Rundle and Thou - Ancestral Recall (pre-release single)

Thou - Heathen

Rezz - Mass Manipulation

(Lone) Wolf and Cub -  May You See Only Sky

Lebanon Hanover - Let Them Be Alien

Skywave - Killerrockandroll



Success in artistic endeavors. I'll take it!

No comments: