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by PopMatters Staff

23 Jul 2009

The Pastels / Tenniscoats
Two Sunsets
Releasing: 22 September 7 (UK) / 22 September (US)

01 So Many Stars
02 Two Sunsets
03 Song for a Friend
04 Vivid Youth
05 Yomigaeru
06 Modesty Piece
07 About You
08 Boats
09 Hikoki
10 From on a Mountain Sodane
11 Mou Mou Rainbow
12 Start Slowly

The Pastels / Tenniscoats
“About You” [MP3]

by shathley Q

23 Jul 2009

Two men of very different destinies. Artist Craig Hamilton makes a compelling visual statement about writer James Robinson’s project of an art deco city in comics evolving from the lives of great men.

For writer James Robinson, the dream of an art deco comics has been a long, slow project. By issue 54 of Starman it had taken nearly five years. Winding its way through a passing exchange between characters, and on to being visualized by the series’ regular artists, Starman’s home of Opal eventually became as much a character as any other. But it is with issue 54, and with guest illustrator Hamilton, that the art deco theme finally transcends the visualization of Opal and influences the medium of comics itself. Ironically, issue 54 is set in the nineteenth century, long before the art deco movement properly took hold.

Hamilton depicts two men whose contribution to Opal live on for longer than a century. In doing so he opposes their individual characters, but also the fabric of the city’s life.

To the left is legendary blood-and-guts lawman, Sheriff Brian Savage, the Scalphunter. To the right stands Herman Moll reclusive (and by the close of the twentieth century, little-remembered) visionary, the fictive inventor of the first spaceship. Contrasted as looking down on their achievements, both remain unaware of the full impact they will have on the future of Opal.

The vibrancy and warmth of the palette used to depict Savage in the Chinese parlor differs sharply from the cold, clinical hues of Moll’s hangar. Yet for all its warmth, Savage’s world will require of Opal defenders prepared to spill blood. While for all the apparent cold of Moll’s panel, it is his work that will nurture the dreams of Ted Knight, the first Starman and provide Jack Knight a means to the stars.

by PopMatters Staff

23 Jul 2009

Animal Collective released Merriweather Post Pavilion to near universal acclaim earlier this year and are on track to do very well indeed in year-end top albums lists of many publications, including this one. They chat with Noisevox about the success of the album and much more.

More videos from the Animal Collective series…

by PopMatters Staff

23 Jul 2009

The Thermals kicked off the brand new Noisevox site this June with four live tunes and a set of interviews.

by Bill Gibron

23 Jul 2009

Most have heralded it as a match made in fantasy filmmaking heaven—Tim Burton and Lewis Carroll. The mad genius behind Edward Scissorhands and A Nightmare Before Christmas taking on the quintessential freak show fairy tale—Alice in Wonderland…except, that’s not actually what is happening. With the ‘Net abuzz with news of a recently released teaser trailer for the upcoming Disney effort (March 2010 is the proposed time frame for its debut), it’s interesting to note what this new version of Alice is… and is not.

First off, this is not a long awaited faithful interpretation of Carroll’s work by Burton. Instead, from reading early script reviews and the available online synopsis, the eccentric A-list director is taking the Alice characters and reworking them, Hook style, into a more modern, epic-oriented work. In this total reimagining of the tale, Alice is a teen, runs away from a party turned proposal, and ends up back in Wonderland. There she helps the White Queen defeat the evil that is her Red sister with the help of some familiar players from both Volumes of Carroll’s creative lore.

Huh? Doesn’t exactly sound like the “Walrus and the Carpenter”, does it? While the early word had casting run from inspired (Crispin Glover as the Knave of Hearts) to tired (Johnny Depp—yes AGAIN—as the Mad Hatter), the one thing you could count on was Burton’s vision. Part veiled Victorian Gothic, a smidgen of Edward Gorey, and a lot of his own adolescent insecurities, his style usually offers up memorable images—just look at such imaginative works as The Corpse Bride, Beetlejuice, and Sleepy Hollow. But this critic for one was rather underwhelmed by the initial pre-production stills, and now the trailer comes along to inspire even more concern. While it’s still too early to tell, this may be the first time that Burton has been caught copying himself—and doing it rather ineffectually.

//Mixed media

The Thoughtful Absurdity of 'Spaceplan'

// Moving Pixels

"Spaceplan is a goofy game that still manages to pack a potent emotional punch.

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