Yet again the London-based trio of the androgynous sex rock is back in an attempt to profane and corrupt another generation of innocent angst ridden teens with bisexual tendencies. Only a change has occurred. This album has been dubbed as The Death of Nancyboy. Gone are the days when people would question the sexual identity of Brian Molko or the lyrics evoked rebellion and the indulgence of sex and drugs.
Now, being a Placebo fan for many years, I could be biased on the review of this album. Truth is, if youíre one of those fans that have been awaiting a volume two to their sophomore album Without You Iím Nothing, stop holding your breath, cos this isnít the one. But on the same premise, this album is fundamentally better than Sleeping With Ghosts. Songs like the singles, Because I Want You and Song to Say Goodbye, are the typical Placebo songs, both music wise and lyrics wise. Some gems in the album include Pierot the Clown, In the Cold Ray of Morning, Post Blue, and Space Monkey. Electronic influences arenít as evident than their previous album although the lyrics tend to read more like Prodigy lyrics with their obsessive repetitions than the story-telling lyrics that all Placebo fans admired from Without You Iím Nothing and Black Market Music. According to Molko he no longer needs to use many words to convey a feeling. Perhaps remembering complex lyrics is getting harder for him everyday which explains the decision to simplify.
Music-wise many songs feel like a sequel to Narcoletptic, especially Follow the Cops Back Home. The songs have a raw hypnotic quality to them that makes me almost want to forgive them for having written the worst song of all time, Something Rotten in their previous album. Should you buy this album? If you enjoy rock songs with seemingly sexually allusive lyrics sung by a nasally sounding frontman, then itís for you. But then again, Iím too corrupt by now to ever pass a negative judgment on their music.
Placebo have become the masters of marketing. They reel in fans with the premise that youíre getting something exclusive when in reality what you are getting is nothing more out of the ordinary. Take the documentary that the DVD offers, it only lasts a mere 8 minutes. The only extra really worth any hype is the performance of the band with The Cure for If Only Tonight We Could Sleep live at Zenith. The only amusing part of the whole DVD is the lyrics gallery that lights up each word as the background music progresses, making it capable for one to have Placebo Karaoke Night if youíre so inclined.
Overall rating album/dvd: 5 stars out of 5
When it comes to romantic comedies Iím not a fan of the genre. But the film caught my attention for two reasons: the film takes its title from a famous Cure song and the script is based on Marc Levyís novella If Only It Were True, which I had read five years ago and had found brilliant. Elizabeth Mastersons (Reese Witherspoon) is a workaholic doctor who is far too busy to focus on her life. A rainy night Elizabeth has an accident that puts her in a coma. Elizabeth has no idea what has happened to her until she finds David Abbot (Mark Ruffalo) a depressed widower who lives in her apartment. The film has its comedic moments especially in cases where David speaks to Elizabeth in public and nobody sees her but himself. On a more profound level the film attempts to have us focus on the importance of living life to the fullest while one is still alive before its too late. Not the usual romantic comedy that will get you teary eyed but rather will have you laughing and with Reese Witherspoon in the film, even blokes will find the film amusing.
4 stars out of 5
Justin (Lou Pucci) is your typical angst-filled teen, only that heís got a habit that he canít seem to kick, at 17, he still sucks his thumb. His parents played by Vincent DíOnofrio and Tilda Swinton have tried everything to get him to cease his embarrassing addiction. One day his orthodontist (Keanu Reeves) tries to eliminate his oral fixation through hypnosis. Oddly enough the experiment works only that Justinís oral fixation moves on to Ritalin assumption and then to smoking weed. The film shows us the journey of an emotionally angst teen who goes from being an underachiever to a manic overachiever, to finally coming to terms with his oral fixation at the end.
The film is clever and not the usual teen film. If youíre a fan of independent films, then youíll find this one to be brilliant.
5 stars out of 5
Title: Betrayal of Cerridwen
Author: K. Gallant
Publication Date: April 2006
1790 Charleston is the setting of Gallantís striking tale of werewolves and vampires. The story holds no elements of horror or the usual washed out clichťs concerning these fantastical night creatures. Serena, the novelís protagonist, is a strong minded individual determined to annihilate the vampire Gideon who killed her loverís family without mercy. Gallantís elegant writing captures the senses and enables the reader to emerge into a world where love, passion, and betrayal are explored through Serenaís endeavors to help her kind survive.
Grade: A Ė
Title: Late Night Confessions
Author: Von Soltwedel
Publication Date: 2005
The poetry in this collection read like verses in a song. The poet is smart to keep the poems short in order not to overwhelm the reader with an overdose of rhyme. Many of the poems question about love, faith, and reality. My personal favourite, Mona Lisa on the Silver Screen seems to echo the fate of many child stars like Judy Garland and Shirley Temple, loved at a young age to then be forgotten. This Man delves into the psyche of a man whoís about to commit suicide, while Poetís Kiss describes a poetís talent as both a curse and a gift. The poems are simple. Rather than trying to answer questions, they seem to leave the reader with the feeling of questioning themselves. A suggested read after a difficult day at work.
Title: Ladies: A Conjecture of Personalities
Author: Feather Schwartz Foster
Publication Date: 2002
Ever wondered how the first ladies Martha Washington, Mary Lincoln, Edith Roosevelt, or Elizabeth Truman were like? Nobody knows much about them because the media during their time nor the history books grant them the spotlight they deserve. In this book, the spotlight is placed upon 29 first ladies. Being one that doesnít particularly like historical biographies I was reluctant when it came to reading this book, but the author takes what would be a tedious subject and gives it a zesty twist to it. The book reads like a conversation where each first lady is given the opportunity to tell her life story. But instead of reading like something from the History Channel itís entertaining like one of those Lifetime personality specials on TV. A must-read for anyone whoís ever grumbled over the fact of there not being enough historical novels about the ďfounding mothersĒ of America.