DID YOU READ

Exclusive premiere: John K. Samson “Longitudinal Centre”

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John K. Samson, singer-songwriter of The Weakerthans, just released his first full length solo album, “Provincial,” which delves deep along roads into the Canadian landscape of Manitoba, where the singer lives.

“They’re the places I kept going back to,” Samson says quite literally of the prairie roads he traveled — Manitoba Highway 23, Provincial Road 222, and Portage Avenue which turns into the province’s mainline artery, Trans Canada Highway 1. On these travels he visited many obscure landmarks, including a tuberculosis sanatorium-turned-RV park. He talked to family, friends and strangers, and eventually he “started to feel like the project was leading [him] somewhere.”

“Longitudinal Centre” was directed by Aaron Himes on and around those roads that run through “Provincial.”

 

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Have you found the road that leads to your “Longitudinal Centre?” Let us know in the comments below or on Twitter or Facebook!

Underworld

Under Your Spell

10 Otherworldly Romances That’ll Melt Your Heart

Spend Valentine's Day weekend with IFC's Underworld movie marathon.

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Photo Credit: Screen Gems/courtesy Everett Collection

Romance takes many forms, and that is especially true when you have a thirst for blood or laser beams coming out of your eyes.  It doesn’t matter if you’re a werewolf, a superhero, a clone, a time-traveler, or a vampire, love is the one thing that infects us all.  Read on to find out why Romeo and Juliet have nothing on these supernatural star-crossed lovers, and be sure to catch IFC’s Underworld movie marathon this Valentine’s Day weekend.

1. Cyclops/Jean Grey/Wolverine, X-Men series

The X-Men franchise is rife with romance, but the steamiest “ménage à mutant” may just be the one between Jean Grey (Famke Janssen), Cyclops (James Marsden), and Wolverine (Hugh Jackman). Their triangle is a complicated one as Jean finds herself torn between the two very different men while also trying to control her darker side, the Phoenix. This leads to Jean killing Cyclops and eventually getting stabbed through her heart by Wolverine in X-Men: The Last Stand. Yikes!  Maybe they should change the name to Ex-Men instead?


2. Willow/Tara, Buffy the Vampire Slayer

Joss Whedon gave audiences some great romances on Buffy the Vampire Slayer — including the central triangle of Buffy, Angel, and Spike — but it was the love between witches Willow (Alyson Hannigan) and Tara (Amber Benson) that broke new ground for its sensitive and nuanced portrayal of a LGBT relationship.

Willow is smart and confident and isn’t even sure of her sexuality when she first meets Tara at college in a Wiccan campus group. As the two begin experimenting with spells, they realize they’re also falling for one another and become the show’s most enduring, happy couple. At least until Tara’s death in season six, a moment that still brings on the feels.


3. Selene/Michael, Underworld series

The Twilight gang pales in comparison (both literally and metaphorically) to the Lycans and Vampires of the stylish Underworld franchise. If you’re looking for an epic vampire/werewolf romance set amidst an epic vampire/werewolf war, Underworld handily delivers in the form of leather catsuited Selene (Kate Beckinsale) and shaggy blonde hunk Michael (a post-Felicity Scott Speedman). As they work together to stop the Vampire/Lycan war, they give into their passions while also kicking butt in skintight leather. Love at first bite indeed.


4. Spider-man/Mary Jane Watson, Spider-man

After rushing to the aid of beautiful girl-next-door Mary Jane Watson (Kirsten Dunst), the Amazing Spider-man is rewarded with an upside-down kiss that is still one of the most romantic moments in comic book movie history. For Peter Parker (Tobey Maguire), the shy, lovable dork beneath the mask, his rain-soaked makeout session is the culmination of years of unrequited love and one very powerful spider bite. As the films progress, Peter tries pushing MJ away in an attempt to protect her from his enemies, but their web of love is just too powerful. And you know, with great power, comes great responsibility.


5. Molly/Sam, Ghost

When it comes to supernatural romance, you really can’t beat Molly and Sam from the 1990 hit film Ghost. Demi Moore goes crazy for Swayze like the rest of us, and the pair make pottery sexier than it’s ever been.

When Sam is murdered, he’s forced to communicate through con artist turned real psychic, Oda Mae Brown (Whoopi Goldberg in her Academy Award-winning role) to warn Molly she is still in danger from his co-worker, Carl (a pre-Scandal Tony Goldwyn). Molly doesn’t believe Oda is telling the truth, so Sam proves it by sliding a penny up the wall and then possessing Oda so he and Molly can share one last romantic dance together (but not the dirty kind). We’d pay a penny for a dance with Patrick Swayze ANY day.


6. Cosima/Delphine, Orphan Black

It stands to reason there would be at least one complicated romance on a show about clones, and none more complicated than the one between clone Cosima (Tatiana Maslany) and Dr. Delphine Cormier (Evelyne Brochu) on BBC America’s hit drama Orphan Black.

Cosima is a PhD student focusing on evolutionary developmental biology at the University of Minnesota when she meets Delphine, a research associate from the nefarious Dyad Institute, posing as a fellow immunology student. The two fall in love, but their happiness is brief once Dyad and the other members of Clone Club get involved. Here’s hoping Cosima finds love in season four of Orphan Black. Girlfriend could use a break.


7. Aragorn/Arwen, Lord of the Rings

On a picturesque bridge in Rivendell amidst some stellar mood-lighting and dreamy Elvish language with English subtitles for us non-Middle Earthlings, Arwen (Liv Tyler) and Aragorn (Viggo Mortensen) bind their souls to one another, pledging to love each other no matter what befalls them.

Their courtship is a matter of contention with Arwen’s father, Elrond (Hugo Weaving), who doesn’t wish to see his daughter suffer over Aragorn’s future death. The two marry after the conclusion of the War of the Ring, with Aragorn assuming his throne as King of Gondor, and Arwen forgoing her immortality to become his Queen. Is it too much to assume they asked Frodo to be their wedding ring-bearer?


8. Lafayette/Jesus, True Blood

True Blood quickly became the go-to show for supernatural sex scenes featuring future Magic Mike strippers (Joe Manganiello) and pale Nordic men with washboard abs (Hi Alexander Skarsgård!), but honestly, there was a little something for everyone, including fan favorite Bon Temps medium, Lafayette Reynolds (Nelsan Ellis).

In season three, Lafayette met his mother’s nurse, Jesus, and the two began a relationship. As they spend more time together and start doing V (short for Vampire Blood), they learn Jesus is descended from a long line of witches and that Lafayette himself has magical abilities. However, supernatural love is anything but simple, and after the pair join a coven, Lafayette becomes possessed by the dead spirit of its former leader. This relationship certainly puts a whole new spin on possessive love.


9. Nymphadora Tonks/Remus Lupin, Harry Potter series

There are lots of sad characters in the Harry Potter series, but Remus Lupin ranks among the saddest. He was bitten by a werewolf as a child, his best friend was murdered and his other best friend was wrongly imprisoned in Azkaban for it, then THAT best friend was killed by a Death Eater at the Ministry of Magic as Remus looked on. So when Lupin unexpectedly found himself in love with badass Auror and Metamorphmagus Nymphadora Tonks (she prefers to be called by her surname ONLY, thank you very much), pretty much everyone, including Lupin himself, was both elated and cautiously hopeful about their romance and eventual marriage.

Sadly, the pair met a tragic ending when both were killed by Death Eaters during the Battle of Hogwarts, leaving their son, Teddy, orphaned much like his godfather Harry Potter. Accio hankies!


10. The Doctor/Rose Tyler, Doctor Who

Speaking of wolves, Rose “Bad Wolf” Tyler (Billie Piper) captured the Doctor’s hearts from the moment he told her to “Run!” in the very first episode of the re-booted Doctor Who series. Their affection for one another grew steadily deeper during their travels in the TARDIS, whether they were stuck in 1950s London, facing down pure evil in the Satan Pit, or battling Cybermen.

But their relationship took a tragic turn during the season two finale episode, “Doomsday,” when the Tenth Doctor (David Tennant) and Rose found themselves separated in parallel universes with no way of being reunited (lest two universes collapse as a result of a paradox). A sobbing Rose told a holographic transmission of the Doctor she loved him, but before he could reply, the transmission cut out, leaving our beloved Time Lord (and most of the audience) with a tear-stained face and two broken hearts all alone in the TARDIS.

Exclusive premiere: Danger Mouse & Daniele Luppi “Season’s Trees”

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If you thought you heard an inkling of Ennio Morricone in Gnarls Barkley’s “Crazy,” you weren’t the only one, this muse had clearly been in Brian Burton’s ear a long time. When Burton, a.k.a. Danger Mouse, and Italian composer Daniele Luppi got serious about their Spaghetti Western inspired “Rome” album, they went to Morricone’s studio in Rome to record it.  Their backing musicians were old players who actually played on classic Morricone soundtracks like  “Fistful of Dollars” and “The Good, The Bad & The Ugly.” And of course, every track was laid down in analog with vintage instruments. The result in large part, is an album that sounds as if it might have been made in the late 1960’s, even on the six tracks sung by Jack White and the talented Norah Jones.

“I really love the way her voice sounds,” Burton said of asking Jones to sing three tracks on the record, “I knew this was a little bit different for her, but she was really up for it.” Jones sings vocals on three tracks, including “Season’s Trees,” for which we have an intimate live session, complete with the most adorable button pusher ever seen, shot by director Chris Milk.

“It was sort of an experiment in raw minimalism,” Milk explained. “There was really no crew, just myself and audio engineer Todd Monfalcone recording the live sound.”  It was the first time that Burton and Luppi sat down in earnest to perform songs from the album live with Jones.  “Norah had no hair, make up, or wardrobe people.  She still looks completely radiant.  There is an intimacy and life within the clips that is sometimes difficult to capture with a crew of 100, lip-syncing, wind machines, and everything else I’ve certainly indulged in. What you see and hear is basically all there was.  Three very talented musicians playing together in a room.”

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Have you seen Danger Mouse’s “3 Dreams of Black” interactive video too? Let us know in the comments below or on Twitter or Facebook!

Exclusive premiere: An Horse “Airport Death”

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The best pop punk songs always betray their happy sound with a tinge of menace, more than that way in which well crafted guitars can make you feel like you’re moving dangerously fast, but also in their subject matter. An Horse’s Kate Cooper lays this on right off the bat in “Airport Death” confiding, “I sat in an airport thinking, I’m gonna die…  die, die, die.”  Recent NYU Film School grad, Nina Stiefel, shot the video in Brooklyn where the laundromats always seem to be a block too far away.

“I sat in an airport thinking, I wonder why… We put our heads down and avoid each other’s eyes,” Cooper questions after her head trip.  Nothing like a dose of menacing doubt to cleanse the palate of the saccharine sounds of public spaces.


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The Australian duo returns to the road in North America this Spring supporting 2011’s “Walls” (on Mom+Pop Music). The three week tour, supporting Nada Surf, kicks off March 20th in LA.


An Horse Tour Dates:
3/20/12 – Los Angeles, CA @ The Music Box ^
3/21/12 – San Francisco, CA @ The Fillmore ^
3/23/12 – Portland, OR @ Wonder Ballroom ^
3/27/12 – Salt Lake City, UT @ Urban Lounge ^
3/29/12 – Denver, CO @ Summit Music Hall ^
3/30/12 – Omaha, NE @ The Waiting Room ^
3/31/12 – Minneapolis, MN @ First Avenue ^
4/2/12 – Chicago, IL @ Metro ^
4/6/12 – Boston, MA @ Paradise Rock Club ^
4/7/12 – New York, NY @ Webster Hall ^
4/9/12 – Philadelphia, PA @ TLA ^
4/10/12 – Washington, DC @ 9:30 Club ^
^ w/ Nada Surf


What do you rock out to Airports? Let us know in the comments below or on Twitter or Facebook!

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