Monday Must Haves - Last Week's
Monday’s Must Haves
Here at Ara City Radio we have the luxury of non-committee playlisting. It means we are free to choose the tracks, albums, bands and artists that we see most fitting our brand and our listening audience. It, in a sense, allows us to be TasteMakers. Sometimes that can work against us, when we are ahead of the curve. But we would prefer to lead rather than follow. Here is the first of our week MUST HAVES – a round up of the pick of the week’s release, delivered, oddly, on a weekly basis. As always, despite the bold claims made above, do let us know your views, whether you agree or disagree, it’s all valuable comment.
Django Django – Marble Skies
Just as likely to be kitted out in Sci-Fi garb as they are to be waxing lyrical about Kraftwerk and what that button on the middle top left of a KORG actually does, Django Django are quite literally a baffling blend of styles and time signatures. The retro futurism of Tic Tac Toe’s deliberately awkward displays why the four-piece are so often compared to Alt-J and Metronomy but there’s a nous and willingness to appease the mainstream on the dancefloor fillers of In Your Beat and Real Gone that sets them apart from their contemporaries.
For fans of: Everything Everything, Glass Animals, Patterned sweaters
The Go! Team - Semicircle
We’ve given the future-retro funk of lead single, Mayday a fair rinsing here at ACR. It’s easy to forget in the dim and dismal overcast apertures of January to February that music such as this requires an open window and a brazen will to be chirpy. Big, bold and brassy on All The Way Live, playful and full of zeal on Semicircle Song, The Go! Team are as inventive as they are energetic. Yes, it’s essentially a kitchen sink + 11 dynamic but if the kitchen is where it’s at, this is the soundtrack you need for a good time.
For fans of: Sugary drinks, Rollercoasters, Cheerleader chants, Lemon Jelly, The Avalanches…..
Dream Wife – Dream Wife
Punk and pop seldom go very well. Sure, we've seen them dillydallying, hand holding on a summer's walk. But for every Warpaint and Wolf Alice there's a McBusted or worse an Alien Ant Farm. Novelty? Sure. Lasting? No.!With the tipped Dream Wife there seems to be a rich vein struck, jangling guitars hit against urgent drumming and slashing riffs, while vocals from Rakel Mjoll range from smooth to angry AF in a beat. Lead tracks Hey Heartbreaker (A-listed here at ACR), Fire and Somebody would make many a headliner swoon but it's the fierce closer F.U.U that really sets the band apart. Yes, there's feminist touches and no, that's not an issue. In the current climate angry young females are greater than ignorant misogynists.
For people who dig Warpaint, Sleater Kinny, The Breeders, Yeah Yeah Yeahs, Deap Vally...
Oscar baiting drama (yet overlooked at Noms time) from Steven Spielberg and starring cinematic titans Meryl Streep and Tom Hanks. Set against a cover-up that spanned the terms of four U.S. Presidents, The Post details the battle between journalistic integrity and a bent government office, desperate to bury the facts. Bolstered by stellar performances from the full cast as well the leads, this weighty drama is a worthy alternative to seeing non-descript cityscapes being laid to waste.
Blade Runner 2049
Long awaited sequel to the seminal Ridley Scott Neo Noir. The prolific auteur Dennis Villeneuve (Prisoners, Arrival….maybe James Bond) helms this genre gem. Harrison Ford continues his recent trend for picking up old characters in updated versions of the original classics. To talk too much about the plot would require spoileroonies, and we are not doing that here. Revel in the world building, the sound tracking and the glorious visuals. A touch long for those of squeaky bum syndrome and occasionally a touch too clever for its own good, Blade Runner 2049 demands repeat plays and an HD TV set (if just for Ryan Gosling’s industrial strength smouldering).
Available at all good retail outlets.
Monster Hunter World
A revival of a game that found fame on hand held devices over a decade ago and has gone under numerous incarnations in the meantime. This vast open world RPG is hard. Like, SOLID. But the rewards for persistence are huge. The environments are huge and deeply interactive, you’ll need to study your quarry before going in all cock-a-hoop. The learning curve may worry newcomers but levelling up is tied to the creatures you’ve downed as opposed to simply finding and grinding. Frame rates can dip at points where a lot is going on onscreen at once but these may be ironed out in future software updates. Until Shadow Of The Colossus is released this week and indeed (for PS4 users, at least), God of War sees Kratos lay some smack upside gargantuan heads this is a monster smash. And who doesn’t like chasing down giant Dino’s and escaping ravenous BirdLion things?
Available now on all formats