Feb 16: Car Seat Headrest — Twin Fantasy
Car Seat Headrest quietly blew audiences away for the majority of 2017, their previous two albums Teens of Style (2015) and Teens of Denial (2016) brought into focus everything the indie rock band wanted to be, and proving that it was well worth listening to. They’re weird, and willing to get weirder, but they’re also fantastic musicians, and there’s no doubt in my mind that Twin Fantasy will be something new and beautiful.
Feb 9: David Duchovny — Every Third Thought
Yeah, you read that right, David Duchovny. X-Files and Californication, David Duchovny. I don’t really know what to tell you about this one, I just thought you’d like to know it exists. Apparently, it’s not even his first: 2015’s Hell or Highwater is a pretty reasonable pop-rock affair, but the fact that it’s David frickin’ Duchovny is very distracting. Again, I include this more out of curiosity than anything.
Feb 23: The Robert J Hunter Band (self-titled)
Now here’s something to get excited about. The Robert J Hunter band are a just a little blues band from the UK, but I’ve looked far and wide, and haven’t yet found a more exciting blues band that’s active today. Their first two albums are some of the filthiest, most exciting blues tracks of the century, and Robert Hunter’s 2016 solo acoustic record Where I’m From is a staggeringly emotional album; you put those two things together, and you have what makes this band so engaging, and such a thrill to listen to. Based on their most recent singles, their bluesy sound is giving way to a little more classic rock and americana influence, and I’m all for it. This is one for the guitarists and the Clapton fans.
Feb 16: Black Panther
If ‘it’s a Marvel movie’ is no longer enough to excite you, I have a few other ways to sell you on Black Panther. For one, the director is Ryan Coogler, the genius who made Rocky interesting again with 2016’s incredible Creed. What’s more, Michael B. Jordan, the star of Creed, is the main villain of the film. Chadwick Boseman has already proven his portrayal of T’Challa to be as exciting as the rest of the Marvel lineup. Still not sold? Kendrick Lamar produced the soundtrack. You’re welcome.
Feb 16: Early Man
I’m not sure how big the Wallace & Gromit series has been on this side of the pond, but suffice to say that it’s still some of the most delightful children’s animation out there (and that’s stop motion animation, by the way. Bloody impressive stuff). Aardman Studios are also responsible for Chicken Run, which might even be a little better. And now they’re back with Early Man, about the dawn of civilisation, with a stellar cast that includes Tom Hiddleston and Maisie Williams. There aren’t many other studios that get slapstick so right, and I can’t help but get giddy about this film.
Feb 23: Annihilation
Based on Jeff VanderMeer’s Southern Reach trilogy of science fiction novels, Annihilation stars Natalie Portman and Oscar Isaac, and seems to be going for the same kind of smart science fiction as the likes of Arrival. Portman leads a team of female scientists on an expedition into the site of an environmental disaster, after the previous team returned only one survivor. What they find in the site, by all accounts, is simply nature run rampant, allowed to evolve at its own, horrifying pace. The trailer promises stunning visuals and some truly horrifying set pieces with giant, carnivorous plants. I’m sold, to be honest.