Before I skip the country, I should really review a bunch of albums I’ve had sitting on my iPod for ages – I suppose none of them particularly excited me, but none of them are bad, and Eurovision got in the way (and it will again). But having listening to them on the big journeys this weekend, I think it’s time.
So, Union J. Where do they fit in these days? I suppose they’d been pushed in the hope that One Direction-sized success might appear, coming from similar roots. The band auditioned as three-piece “Triple J” (Josh, JJ & Jaymi), while fourth member George auditioned as a solo singer. Both acts got through the auditions but failed at Judges’ Houses. After another group were removed from the contest, they were invited to continue as a four-piece, and ultimately came 4th in the series.
I have a soft spot for them, perhaps in the same way as I did for The Wanted; there is the excitement of what they might bring out in the future, after this initial ‘safe’ boyband album prepares the ground. They seem like thoroughly likeable guys, and not yet the overstyled messes of One Direction. Sales-wise it’s not quite working out yet but they’ve got a second album on the way, hopefully benefitting from The Wanted’s departure. But what about this album? A slim 35 minutes and 10 tracks makes it hard to get bored, and I enjoyed it more than I expected after my first listen. Continue reading
I think I enjoyed “Kick Ass”. It wasn’t that long ago, but weirdly I can’t really remember much about it, except the violence. I honestly thought I had been de-sensitised by overdosing on gory slasher movies. Maybe it was more convincing, but I was surprised at how flinchy I was. Either way, it was pretty good.
“Kick Ass 2” picks up where that left off, as we rejoin our two heroes Dave & Mindy, aka Kick Ass & Hit Girl, both in retirement. Mindy’s retirement and struggle to have a normal childhood are imposed on her, and she grudgingly accepts this out of respect for her guardian. Dave on the other hand, backed away after the intense violence of the previous film’s plot, but is soon feeling reckless and wants to participate in the superhero movement that he started.
The clash between Dave & Mindy leads them on largely separate plots, despite them going to the same school. It feels like a bit of a waste, as it leaves Dave’s plot all the less engaging without her. Dave joins a crime-fighting force of heroes, led by the polite but ultra-violent Colonel Stars & Stripes. Continue reading
Filed under Films, Reviews
Oh boybands, they are everywhere, and no doubt always will be. Just when you think they’re on the way out, you get something like One Direction taking advantage of the fact that labels temporarily forgot that girls like boys, and reap the benefits.
One Direction are a case study in a little going a long way, and while they’ve had a few good songs I’ve never seen much value in them. Not least now because most of them are covering themselves in repulsive tattoos. The brand is certainly not what it was a few years ago, and it’s changing at such a rate that I’m convinced something it going to ruin it all soon.
Fortunately we have a spare. Also from the UK’s X-Factor, “Union J” were similarly put together on the show, with the addition of George to existing group Triple J. After a shaky start that saw them eliminated from the contest but brought back when another group dropped out, the group went from strength to strength. Continue reading