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Thursday, Sep 3, 2009

The 1998 comic Whiteout is brought to the big screen. U.S. Marshal Carrie Stetko (Kate Beckinsale) is the sole law enforcer in Antarctica, and is assigned to investigate a brutal murder three days before the sun sets for six months, marking the beginning of the Antarctic winter. As her investigation deepens into the first such crime in the region, she enlists the help of a U.N. operative (Gabriel Macht). With the brutal winter on her heels and the killer closing in, Stetko uncovers secrets that were buried under the ice. Secrets that someone believes are worth killing for.


Kate Beckinsale, Gabriel Macht, Columbus Short and Tom Skerritt all star in Whiteout, which opens to wide release on September 11th.



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Thursday, Sep 3, 2009

Do I have any idea what this film is about after viewing this trailer? Nope, not a clue. Am I going to be the first in line to see this? Suffice it to say, you better not be standing even remotely in my way if you value your well-being.


Christopher Nolan has quite simply never made a bad movie. Ignoring Joel Schumacher’s “do not resuscitate” tag, he singlehandedly revived the Batman franchise. He created a modern-day masterpiece with The Prestige. He has brought intelligence and complexity back into mainstream American cineplexes beginning with Memento and continuing through to his latest success, The Dark Knight.


This teaser trailer, albeit brief, looks to not disappoint. The release date of July 2010, a little more so.



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Wednesday, Sep 2, 2009

Josh Ottum
Like the Season
(Cheap Lullaby)
Releasing: 20 October


Seattle singer/songwriter Josh Ottum has his debut album Like The Season marked for release on October 20th.


The 12-song album is what Ottum calls a collection of “personal greatest hits”. To help with this, Ottum got together with drummer James McAlister (Sufjan Stevens, Richard Swift), multi-instrumentalist Casey Foubert (Pedro the Lion, Sufjan Stevens) and engineer Jon Ervie (Modest Mouse, the Presidents of the United States of America). 


The singer has come far from his childhood aspirations—making instructional golf videos in his backyard and sending promotional photos of staged skateboard moves to famous skateboard companies. Since delving into music, Ottum has toured with the likes of Alexi Murdoch, Stereolab, Cold War Kids, Rosie Thomas, Midlake, the Sea and Cake.


The first single, “It’s Alright” is now available.


SONG LIST
01 It’s Alright
02 The Easy Way Out
03 Who Left the Lights On?
04 Pipe Dreams
05 Freedom is as Thick as a Heart
06 If this Mirror Could Only Talk
07 Having Your Around
08 Like Ourselves
09 My Book
10 Follow Me
11 Heaven the Great Cocoon
12 Do You Really Want to Know?



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Wednesday, Sep 2, 2009
by PopMatters Staff

Russian Circles
Geneva
(Suicide Squeeze)
Releasing: 20 October (US)


SONG LIST
01 Fathom
02 Geneva
03 Melee
04 Hexed All
05 Malko
06 When the Mountain Comes to Muhammad
07 Philos


Russian Circles
“Malko” [MP3]
     



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Wednesday, Sep 2, 2009

Michelle Branch
Everything Comes and Goes
(Warner Bros.)
Releasing: 10 November


When I think of Michelle Branch’s forthcoming country album, Everything Comes and Goes, I think of a conversation about God I had with an old girlfriend. I said that I didn’t believe but thought that true belief exists as a part of someone, on an essential, inviolable level, and there’s nothing anyone can say or do to compromise it. She looked at me like I was a third-degree blockhead, so I conceded that yes, perhaps the belief or disbelief that at first blush seems so essential and inviolable is actually the product of eons of cultural conditioning, concerted assaults from sinister, powerful forces in the world; this made sense intellectually, but was still a viscerally unsatisfying concession.


Judging from her new single, “Sooner or Later” (not a cover of the 1971 Grass Roots hit), Michelle Branch country songs aren’t all that different from Michelle Branch pop songs. The guitars are a bit twangier, and when she pronounces “about” it sounds more like “abayowt”, which is not a word, but the chords are still simple, and the lyrics are still melodramatic in so calculated of a way as to remain completely unobtrusive.


It won’t be her first country crossover effort (see: the Wreckers’ Stand Still, Look Pretty), and she’s still cooing just as coyly as she was when she first came out with whatever song it was that made so many of the shy brunette girls in my high school class want to learn guitar. She was speaking to people then and she’ll speak to people now. All the PR dollars in the world can’t mess with that certain je ne sais qoui that connects artist and patron: you’re going to love the new Michelle Branch, or you’re not. It comes out November 10th.



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