Director: Jonah Hill
Starring: Sunny Suljic, Lucas Hedges, Katherine Waterston
More often than not, movies that flirt heavily with nostalgia spend more time on the accuracy of a setting’s decade and not enough time on believability and character development, this happens so much to the point where the whole thing becomes a bit of a gimmick. That is most definitely not the case with Jonah Hill’s directorial debut Mid90s. It is clear that this film takes place in the 90’s, but it’s never overbearingly 90’s, and though the 90’s is the film’s backdrop, the story that is told will forever remain timeless. The film’s protagonist is a 13 year old boy name Stevie who comes from a troubled home in Los Angeles, CA. Played with impressive realism by Sunny Suljic, this character represents the adolescence we all go through in our teen years. The struggle to find our own identities and the search for where we fit in. In a similar fashion as Elsie Fisher’s character in the film Eighth Grade, Suljic gives the character of Stevie much depth by saying very little. His reactions to the environment around him whether it be his home life consisting of an abusive older brother and a neglectful mother, or the solace he finds in befriending a group of skaters are executed perfectly. The skater kids he hangs out with do an impressive job considering the fact that none of them are actors, and their portrayals of these characters are frighteningly realistic, but there is one character that stands out and brings much depth to the film, and that character is music. The film is delightfully littered with 90’s Hip Hop, but it’s the film’s original film score composed by Trent Reznor and Atticus Ross that truly captivates you. Jonah Hill’s love for music is very clear seeing as how he truly knows how to utilize music to tell a lot during a scene with little to no dialogue. Scenes that display Stevie’s first encounter with escapism through the utopia of music he finds in his brother’s room, and scenes where the atmosphere of a skate park is beautifully presented, they’re all enhanced by the film score. It’s an accurate representation of how even in our most confused or insecure moments, the power of music can get us through the biggest hardships. Yes many of the film’s themes and subject matter have been depicted countless times in film, but these are things we still go through everyday. We all try to understand the ranks of social interaction, and we all search for identity, and this film presents that to us in a realistic, humorous, and artistic way. This may lead to a fruitful directing career for Hill.
Written By: Steven Sandoval
Song: God Is Doing Blow
Genre: Industrial Rock/Electronic
The debut single “God Is Doing Blow” from Swedish duo “Hammare” is an exploration in dissonance, but rather then descending further down the rabbit hole of inaccessibility, the band have every intention to make you move with the song’s danceable quality with it’s groovy rhythm section. The dissonance comes from the synthesizers and unconventional arrangements. The discombobulating machine sounding noise provided by said synthesizers brings a chaotic nature to the track, echoing the genre of “Industrial” music, but this is controlled chaos. It’s never overbearing, and it’s dichotomized with catchiness and sexy swagger. The instrumentation is dirty yet polished, and it compliments the vocals and lyrical content quite well. With lyrical content that seems to be touching on the abandonment of self-sufficiency and the misguided influences of charlatan leaders, it’s clear that the band wanted to emphasize the lyrics, because they have something to say, and they say it eloquently. This song sounds like a promise that the duo have a lot to deliver. Be ready.
Written By: Steven Sandoval
Artist: S. Reidy
EP: And Here With You, I Am
Genre: Hip Hop/Alternative Hip Hop
The term “Alternative Hip Hop” has been thrown around to describe artists in Hip Hop who experiment and incorporate outside elements of different genres that aren’t primarily used in the genre of “Hip Hop,” and as much as this can be a necessary label to inform the listener that they’re in for something different from the mainstream Hip Hop they’re most likely accustomed to, it’s also a label that almost never does an artist justice when it comes to describing the myriad of sounds an influences in their music. Artists like Norman, Oklahoma’s own S. Reidy is further proof that some music is nearly impossible to sum up with one genre tag, and that’s a sign of someone truly ambitious and innovative. His new E.P. And Here With You, I Am is an emotional, introspective, and poetic ride that is as fun as it is sentimental. Being five tracks in length, the E.P. is a short but fulfilling journey through the world of Reidy, and the atmosphere and mood is created right off the bat with the opening track “Fall.” The production is dreamy and features lo-fi percussion, and Reidy’s versatile vocals range from melodic rawness that evokes the spirit of “Emo Rock” to impressive rapping free from boastfulness but rich in genuine mindfulness. Without a doubt this E.P. is moody and a tad bit melancholy. Perfect for those days when you wanna go for a walk in gloomy weather with headphones on ignoring the world, but it’s also fun enough and catchy enough to ride around with your best friends singing along to the undeniably catchy hooks. Seriously, I dare you to try and not sing along to the chorus on “Dustin’s Mustache,” by the end of the song you’ll be shouting the lyrics “I never wanted things to ever change! I never wanted things to stay the same! I’d make my mind up but I’m feeling too jaded!” With powerful emotions and introspective thought expressed through poetic lyrics, live instrumentation consisting of soothing acoustic guitar, bass, some piano combined with Hip Hop inspired drum machines, and the irresistible vocal melodies, it’s evident that S. Reidy is one of those artists that gets better and better with each release, and the future looks very bright for this talented visionary.
Written By: Steven Sandoval
BROCKHAMPTON are set to release their new album Iridescence tonight, which was recorded at the legendary “Abbey Road Studios.” While we wait, the group has released a new song off the album titled “J’OUVERT,” and it is a hard hitting banger that is dark, unrelenting, and features a standout aggressive verse from member JOBA. You can watch the music video for “J’OUVERT” below:
Australian “Punk” outfit “Amyl and the Sniffers” are part of a new wave of Australian bands who aren’t afraid to have fun with their music that evokes the spirit of 70’s “Punk.” Today the band have shared a new single titled “Some Mutts (Can’t Be Muzzled)” whether or not this will appear on an upcoming full-length album hasn’t been revealed yet, but the band are garnering much attention and a new album might be imminent. You can listen to “Some Mutts (Can’t Be Muzzled)” below:
Atlanta rapper J.I.D is most definitely a talented artist to watch, and he is expected to release his new album DiCaprio 2 soon. To give us a taste of what’s to come, the rapper has dropped a new single titled “151 Rum,” and it is a banger. You can listen to the track below:
The wait is finally over. After several album name changes and much speculation as to when their new album Iridescence would get a release date, BROCKHAMPTON have announced that they will release the album on September 21st, and that’s just around the corner. This follows last year’s impressive SATURATION trilogy, and this is the group’s first album without Ameer Vann who was kicked out recently due to sexual misconduct allegations. The tracklist has also been revealed and it looks like the album will not feature their recent singles “1999 WILDFIRE,” “1998 TRUMAN,” and “1997 DIANA.” According to the band, Iridescence will be the first installment of another trilogy titled The Best Years of Our Lives. The group recorded the album at the legendary “Abbey Road Studios,” and it will be their first release on the label “RCA Records.” You can check out the tracklist below:
BROCKHAMPTON also have a documentary about the making of Iridescence coming out in select theaters titled The Longest Summer In America. Watch the trailer below: