Yi Yi (A One And A Two) (1999, dir. Edward Yang): Brilliant, meditative work about a modern Taiwanese family, their lives and loves, their work and their (almost total lack of) play. Each member of the family signifies a different time of life, from the 8-year-old boy to the 80-something grandmother. The boy’s speech at the end is extraordinary, perhaps worth watching again and again. (H) Highly recommended.
Robyn – Body Talk: this is the collected, 15-track final album released a couple of months ago, not any of the 8-track mini-albums released earlier. And it’s pretty good. Quite reminiscent of Madonna’s Confessions On A Dance Floor, but with plenty more sass and attitude. It isn’t as memorable as Madge’s effort was, which is one of my favourite dancepop albums, but Body Talk is solid and has enough catchy hooks to keep you coming back a few times. None Of Dem is probably the highlight – thanks Rua for showing it to me first on ye Beates Reality. (W) Worth a look.
Kylesa – Spiral Shadow: I first listened to this while ‘playing’ the hilarious ‘game’ Progress Quest, and it fit the mood perfectly. It’s sludgy and a little doomy at times, but a perfect foray for a non-metaller like me into the genre as the prettier and more hopeful aspects help me to stick with it. It isn’t a sticky mass of distorted guitar, either; it has distinct and memorable tracks. Still haven’t figured out exactly what they’re saying, but I like it. (R) Recommended.