Tuesday, 24 April 2012

SONG REVIEW: Pure Love - Bury My Bones (2012)

Artist: Pure Love
Song: Bury My Bones
Label: Vertigo
Genre: Rock/alternative rock/punk rock

Pure Love's debut single finally arrives and it has been well worth the long wait. For anyone who had seen the awesome YouTube videos of the Bush Hall gig in February, an appetizer of the upcoming album for the former Gallows lead singer Frank Carter and former Hope Conspiracy and Suicide File guitarist Jim Carroll. The duo have crafted an anthemic rock song that is lively, uplifting and catchy as fuck.

Short and snappy at just under 3 minutes, Carter opens with the lines "I so sick of singing about hate", and it sets the wonderfully pure rock sound that this track has going for it. It is sing-a-long stuff all the way and a drastic change; just ask anyone who knows of his previous output with Gallows. His vocals are as impressive as ever (the surprise was lost when hearing the terrific performance at Bush Hall) and are delivered with aplomb. Carroll's riff is big and I found myself air-guitaring at various points through the song in appreciation of the accessible sound that he has crafted. I can't recommend this song enough, it brings back memories of the big rock songs of the past and a time gone-by. If the rest of the album is anywhere near as accomplished and confident as this track is, we may have a monster of an album on our hands.


The song is also available for free download from their official website here.

Wednesday, 11 April 2012

FILM REVIEW: The Chaser (추격자/Chugyeogja) (2008)

Director: Na Hong-jin
Starring: Kim Yoon-seok, Ha Jeong-woo, Seo Yeong-hee and Koo Bon-woong.
Running Time: 123 minutes
Genre: Thriller

Continuing the exceptional recent output from South Korean cinema comes this fast-paced and thoroughly entertaining thriller that puts a unique twist on the traditional cat-and-mouse serial killer flick. Na Hong-jin's directorial debut is a highly enjoyable (if slightly overlong) thriller that provides enough unique ideas to raise it about the dull and repetitive generic serial killer films out there.

What is striking early on in The Chaser is how horrible and unlikeable the lead character is. Eom Joong-ho (Kim Yoon-seok) is a former detective turned pimp. Yes, you saw right, the protagonist of this film is a pimp, whose morality has seemingly deserted him and it is surprisingly a masterstroke by writers Na Hong-jin (also the director) and Lee Shin-ho. This film is as much about Joong-ho finding his humanity as it is about him catching the killer and all adds to the impact of the brutal third act. The villain Jeong-woo is the stand out, perfectly mixing cold-hearted killer Yeong-min's at one glance innocent charm with a real menace and psychopathic callousness that would make Michael Myers squirm. This film is not for the faint of heart as Yeong-min's preferred method of murder includes chisels and hammers and is quite bloody and graphic, but well worth it for the stunning third act that is so breathlessly fast-paced and relentlessly entertaining in setting up an intense showdown.

Even though the film may drag on in the middle act, there is enough in the opening and final acts to keep the viewer engaged throughout. Na Hong-jin has crafted a clever, violent and often shocking take on a genre that had up until recently become stale and cliché riddled. You will never be able to look at a hammer and chisel in the same way again, guaranteed.


'What will you be watching this summer?' - published in An Focal