Monday, 20 February 2017

Words From President Donald Trump 2


Er...what happened?

  • A man set himself on fire at Sergels torg, a plaza in central Stockholm. He was taken to the hospital with severe burns. There is so far no information on his motives but the intelligence service is not part of the investigation.
  • The famous singer Owe Thörnqvist (?) had some technical problems during rehearsal for the singing competition ”Melodifestivalen”. (However, the 87 year old singer still managed to secure the victory the very next day.)
  • A man died in hospital, after an accident in the workplace earlier that day in the city of Borås.
  • Due to harsh weather in the northern parts of Sweden the road E10 was closed between Katterjåkk and Riksgränsen. Due to strong winds and snow in the region the Met office also issued an avalanche warning.
  • Police officers initiated a chase for a fleeing Peugeot through central parts of the Swedish capital of Stockholm. The pursuit ended in police officers ramming the suspect at Engelbrektsgatan. The driver is now accused of driving under the influence, traffic violation and car theft. ***

***Many thanks to Aftonbladdet
Russell Cuts the Corn From The Brewers Whiskers.

Saturday, 18 February 2017

"Umbrella Weather" by Led Bib

Tight as the knot of Cordium yet loose as the knicker elastic of Nell Gwynn,; a  bit Zapperish in its delivery but fresh enough to be different. Frenetic at times, full on fast and furious whilst retaining a melodic emphasis. Cyclonic, devilish, a whirlwind of Jazz notes blown at a frenzied pace. It is music to make punk look positively calm by comparison. This is "Umbrella Weather" by Led Bib.

Who are Led Bib you may well ask?

Apart from having a slightly retro feel with their collective appellation, a nod to the past perhaps in terms of approach, they are nothing at all like the famed Rock legends.  Led Bib are a jazz combo. I like that word, combo, it has a distinctly fifties flavour which is possibly misleading as Led Bib are very much of the now.  They are contemporaries of Polar Bear. Another highly rated, creative group who surf across various musical genres their art to pursue.

Led Bid are a five piece group consisting of Mark Holub, Liran Donin, Toby McLaren, Pete Grogan and Chris Williams. The following image is from the groups Facebook page. Its a bit fuzzy unlike their music which is sharp as the proverbial knife.

This is also from their Facebook page and is less fuzzy...

Image may contain: 5 people, people standing and stripes

In reality Led Bib, like the aforementioned Polar Bear, defy neat categorization. They appeal to a cross-section of tastes even having folk aficionados buying their stuff. It isn't surprising really for the sounds they make, they speed at which they make them, the riffs they choose to frame them all make for a diverse and complex mix.  

Yes, its jazz but it also rocks. And if it is jazz then it is a powerful, potent brew. Pick up your umbrella and try some Led Bib. It really is worth a listen. 
 Russell Cuts the Corn From The Brewers Whiskers.

Friday, 17 February 2017

Words from President Donald Trump

“You know what uranium is, right? This thing called nuclear weapons, like lots of things are done with uranium, including some bad things.”

Really? Well, thanks. Now we all know.  Thank goodness you have your finger on the pulse as well as the red button. 
Russell Cuts the Corn From The Brewers Whiskers.

Thursday, 16 February 2017

Wednesday, 15 February 2017

At The Movies 4 - Me and Squid - "Lion"

There are good story's. There are good films. Sometimes, in spite of all the good endeavours of the screen writer, director and cast, the two do not work together. With this film  they do. The story being real is no guarantee either. All too often the truth is lost amid a confusion of self-satisfied sentimentality.  Not so here. The acting is of the finest calibre, especially that of five year old Sunny Pawar who manages with a maturity beyond his years to convey the sense of being lost, of being utterly alone in a very strange place, of being hunted, of being terrified by events yet battling on. It is a performance worthy of any seasoned professional. Not to elevate Sunny so soon in his career but his sterling acting on "Lion" will now and forever be the yardstick by which all future performances will be judged. 

Sunny's fellow actors ain't half bad either.

What I like about the story told isn't just that it is real but rather that it features an unknown. We get plenty of celebrity films or films of individuals made famous by the events that have taken place in their lives but rarely are we privileged to  learn of another's life story when that other is someone we have never heard of.

The story retells events that took place in the mid-eighties. Two Asian brother's, living life in utter poverty, are forced to steal coal by way of earning food. One night older brother Guddu reluctantly takes his younger sibling Saroo with him. Saroo become incredibly tired and lays down on a bench at a railway station. Desperate to pilfer more goods so as to provide food for their family, Guddu leaves his baby brother behind telling him he'll return soon. He never returns. We only find out why at the films end. Upon waking up Saroo clambers aboard a decommissioned passenger train which leaves the Bengali town way behind as it hurtles some 1,600 kilometers away to Calcutta.

No one in Calcutta understands the little boy's Bengali accent. He is a child alone in a very strange land. So alike his own yet so very different. The authorities at a loss to locate the town the child says he comes from shunt Saroo around as they attempt to find his parents and the brother of who he speaks so lovingly. When asked the name of his mother he can only answer "Mummy."

Calcutta is depicted as being Dickensian with child abductors stealing children from off the street before selling them into servitude. It is a grim reality that Saroo faces. Eventually, an Australian couple adopt him. He is flown out to Australia where his life begins anew. 

Decades pass and Saroo, now in his early thirties, is haunted by his pas. His memories, vague now at best, plague him. He cannot forget his brothers nme even if his brothers face is forgotten. Nor can he forget his mother. The thought of how they must feel with their younger sibling-son snatched away from them without explanation is too harrowing for his mind  to cope with. He begins his search by using, as we all do nowadays, the internet specifically Google Earth.

Nicole Kidman's role as Saroo's adoptive mother brings out the very best in her. How she is  able to cry without a hysterical outburst is quite remarkable. Her acting is effortless, subtle with all emotions held in check. Simply amazing.

Dev Patel also supplies a terrific performance as does Rooney Mara. All in all a fine film.

Squid gives it Four Stars as do I. 

Russell Cuts the Corn From The Brewers Whiskers.