Becky Hill: Only Honest on the Weekend review – a conveyor belt of blandness | Pop and rock

[ad_1] In a recent Guardian article that touched on the role of albums in the streaming era, the former head of Virgin EMI described them as an “artist appeasement tool”. It’s a crude way to look at the artform, but in the case of Becky Hill it might be apt. Hill has four Top 10 … Read more

Vacation Friends review – raucous summer comedy is a washout | Comedy films

[ad_1] There’s a sense of strained desperation behind the title of the crude summer comedy Vacation Friends that seeps through to the film itself, the bullish insistence that, yes, Vacation Friends is a phrase that people frequently use is as deranged as assuming that something as utterly disposable as Vacation Friends needs to exist right … Read more

He’s All That review – Netflix’s dull TikTok teen remake lacks charm | Romance films

[ad_1] For the majority of people too young to remember the premiere of She’s All That in 1999, the main draw of He’s All That, Netflix’s gender-swapped remake of the teen classic, is its casting of the TikTok star Addison Rae. In July 2019, an 18-year-old Rae, given name Addison Rae Easterling, went from freshman … Read more

Tunnel 29 by Helena Merriman review – escape to the west | History books

[ad_1] It was a plan that seemed to defy not just caution but geography: to build a tunnel to help East Germans escape to the west – in cold war Berlin, of all places. To this day the preponderance of Berlin street names ending in “damm” reminds locals that the German capital is mainly built … Read more

John Cage: Number Pieces review – revelatory take on ‘anarchic harmony’ | John Cage

[ad_1] Between 1987 and 1992, the final years of his life, John Cage composed some 40 works that he designated only by numbers, indicating the number of performers needed to realise them. They range from solos to orchestral works involving up to 108 players; when there is more than one score for the same number … Read more

This Is Paradise review – gender relations tell a mesmeric story of Northern Ireland | Theatre

[ad_1] Kate Regan is a woman defined by the men in her life. There’s her gentle old Belfast dad, disappointed by the company she keeps, there’s Big Joe, the teenage crush she lost in a daredevil accident, and there’s her attentive but unexciting husband, Brendy. Above all, there’s Diver, a charismatic lowlife more than 20 … Read more

Big Red Machine: How Long Do You Think It’s Gonna Last? review – slightly self-indulgent supergroup | Music

[ad_1] Aaron Dessner cuts a very low-profile figure, even by the standards of both bookish US alt-rockers and blue-chip pop collaborators, neither of whom require otherworldly charisma or an outrageous image. Put it this way: the New York Times recently ran a lengthy profile piece, lauding his achievements – his work on Taylor Swift’s multi-platinum, … Read more

Souad review – shrewd and poignant study of social media identities | Film

[ad_1] As well as being subtle, tender and sad, this feature from Egyptian director Ayten Amin is one of those rare films which really engages with online existence and social media – yet without needing to flash up tweets and texts as onscreen graphics in the way most movies do. Souad meditates on the mysterious … Read more

Coronavirus live news: concern over waning protection in double-jabbed people; Biden review of Covid origins reportedly ‘inconclusive’ | World news

[ad_1] 8.01am BST 08:01 The number of young adults who smoke in England rose by about a quarter in the first lockdown, research has suggested. Nevertheless, the number of people who stopped smoking altogether increased – almost doubling during the first national lockdown when compared with the period immediately prior. Researchers said the widespread belief … Read more