20 Aug 2010

The promise that X-Men will be First Class

Some movies can be very important stepping stones in career development for actors and actresses and X-Men: First Class is shaping up to be one of those.

The prospect giving us goose bumps is the casting of January Jones to play the role of Emma Frost. Following the break-out success of playing Betty Draper in Mad Men, an award-winning performance in retro elegance and style, Jones gets to play the gorgeous X-Men mutant with telepathic powers.

Also known as the White Queen, Emma Frost is noted for sharp comments and dry wit, which we imagine Jones will deliver with perfection.

Names for the rest of the cast have been announced by director Matthew Vaugh. They include Zoe Kravitz to play Angel, Morgan Lily to play the young Raven, Jennifer Lawrence as Mystique and Rose Byrne will play McAvoy's love interest Moira MacTaggert.

Production begins August 23 in London.

8 Aug 2010

Arcade Fire has lost its heat

Sorry to say but their third album THE SUBURBS has not moved Arcade Fire out of the second division of current bands trying hard. In fact when stripped down to the basics, most Arcade Fire songs are no different to The Ting Tings.

If we position, say, The Beatles and The Rolling Stones in the first division of their time, then The Kinks would have been in the second division. Individual songs of The Kinks were great but their complete works didn't achieve the heights of the first division bands.

The difficulty with Arcade Fire is the instrumentation and balance. With most members of the band playing most of the time there is little tonal variation. The mix is muddy. And the song melodies lack power and passion. The three singers usually fail to achieve the strength and character of any of the leading vocalists of today, and even struggle to equal Katie White.

So THE SUBURBS is a disappointment after the potential hinted at - but not achieved - on the previous two albums.