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Columns

Posted 15 Feb 2017 @ 2:23pm

Welcome to the BRAG's weekly rundown on what's hot in the coming seven days of cinematic releases. This week, we have one major Chinese American co-production, one China vs America production, one Vietnamese release and one American film set in Japan. Asia is the future (and the past).

 

Two special mentions this week - firstly, Hidden Figures officially opens this week (jumped...

Posted 9 Feb 2017 @ 4:51pm

Something happens around this time every summer, when everybody’s brains jam up like Hubba Bubba in bicycle spokes and you hear the same sentences again and again.

 

“How hot is it!”

 

“Apparently it’s gonna be 38 on Thursday.”

 

“Man it’s a hot one, like seven inches from the midday sun.”

 

How is it that between March and November,...

Posted 9 Feb 2017 @ 1:14pm

Remember when Gough Whitlam petitioned us to embrace change? To accept, to act, and to acknowledge?

 

Me neither, though his legacy is starting to look pretty bloody golden when it comes to progressing both as a society and as a species. These are testing, trying times characterised by oppression, aggression and fearmongering. Where once change was promised to take us forward, it...

Posted 9 Feb 2017 @ 11:16am

News: February 2017

 

Good Game Says Goodbye

In rather unexpected and sad news, Good Game – Australia’s longest-running television show about video games – has been cancelled. “After the program’s summer break, two of the key presenters of Good Game announced they were leaving to pursue other opportunities,”...

Posted 8 Feb 2017 @ 3:32pm

Welcome to the BRAG's weekly rundown on what's hot in the coming seven days of cinematic releases. Oscar season is in full swing - I hope you've tuned your heart strings, 'cause they're about to get a hecka workout.

 

This week, Denzel directs a heavy-hitter, two tales aim straight for the tear ducts, fathers tussle with sons and one ditzy lass fails to notice the key...

Posted 8 Feb 2017 @ 3:01pm

‘Under Pressure’ was born of dissatisfaction.

 

Originally titled ‘Feel Like’, the song was written by drummer Roger Taylor, and although the musical bones are in place on the demo, the song itself is a mess. Considering the quite sophisticated lyrics of ‘Under Pressure’, the demo seems like someone has taken some teenage poetry, removed every second word, auto-translated it to...

Posted 2 Feb 2017 @ 11:54am

News that inspires optimism has been hard to come by of late. The state of politics, though usually abysmal, has become, for me, a quagmire of fatigue and alternative facts. Donald Trump has launched his reign of terror with an anti-abortion executive order, casting darkness and uncertainty across the entire world, while here at home, Mike Baird has unceremoniously fucked off into the sunset...

Posted 2 Feb 2017 @ 11:23am

Women are sorely underrepresented in electronic music.

 

Of that there is no doubt, and unsurprisingly it’s been a topic of considerable recent interest. If boiled down to percentages, estimates of female DJs appearing on festival bills range anywhere from three to ten per cent, and let’s bear in mind that festivals are generally able to accommodate a much larger scope and wider...

Posted 1 Feb 2017 @ 3:57pm

Last year, one of my favourite American comedians, Hannibal Buress, toured his stand-up to Australia, and at 1am on a Friday night in Sydney he tweeted, “Hey Sydney, who did this? This shit sucks.”

 

I’ve never met Hannibal, but I was embarrassed. It felt like when you take a friend to a restaurant you picked, and the food sucks. And then the restaurant owner kicks you both out...

Posted 31 Jan 2017 @ 1:40pm

Welcome to the BRAG's weekly rundown on what's hot in the coming seven days of cinematic releases, and oh boy are there a lot of reasons to be a grouchy fella at this very mo.

 

As it's a quiet week, your bonus is a Netflix Original that I've thoroughly enjoyed, therefore you better thoroughly enjoy it or I'll come to your house and I will cut you.

 

Also, shout...

Posted 27 Jan 2017 @ 11:45am

Paul Kean’s life was changed by stolen songs. 

 

Music was ever-present as he grew up in New Zealand in the ’60s – as dependable as the slow, cold mist of Christchurch rain – largely thanks to his parents. His father had a soft spot for the piano and a deep baritone voice; his mother a passionate, undying love of hymnals.

 

But it wasn’t until he travelled overseas...

Posted 25 Jan 2017 @ 5:42pm

Do you suffer from a prolonged or pronounced sense of inner emptiness or lack of self-worth?

 

Have you experienced a bankruptcy of the soul? Has life become bereft of meaning? A drawn-out existential crisis brought on by grind of the generic daily modicum? Or has music simply lost its charm and romance?

 

Then the healing quality of spiritual jazz could be just the...

Posted 25 Jan 2017 @ 1:00pm

I’ve only ever had a dim awareness of the existence of gay organisations.

 

Aside from the obvious Mardi Gras and organisations built around sexual health and mental well-being, I’ve been uncharacteristically unperturbed by other queer spheres outside that general area. I realise this means that I’ve not been doing my duty as a queer citizen or something – but the truth is not so...

Posted 25 Jan 2017 @ 12:42pm

New Releases

 

The year might only have just gotten started, but the video game industry is back in full swing, meaning there’s a bunch of titles vying for your attention in February. 

 

First up on Thursday February 2, Abzû, a popular PS4 indie gem, scores its own retail release. A day later on Friday February 3...

Posted 25 Jan 2017 @ 9:28am

Welcome to the BRAG's weekly rundown on what's hot in the coming seven days of cinematic releases. This is a goddamn glorious week, you guys. Look at this friggin' lineup!

 

The two most critically acclaimed flicks of the week are African-American stories with majority black casts; Batfleck has freed himself (momentarily) from the Justice League; a long-lost pariah returns with...

Posted 20 Jan 2017 @ 2:09pm

Of all that Mike Baird did over the course of his three years as Premier of New South Wales, nothing defined him as much as his approach to social media. 

 

He was a politician who lived through Twitter and Facebook, and his extended, bitter falling out with the internet proved symbolic of his entire approach to running Sydney. He was a man unwilling to back down, but more than...

Posted 20 Jan 2017 @ 1:41pm

Event Cinemas George St kicks off its new season of In The House cult classics on Friday February 3.

 

Cult cinema cures every single ailment known to humankind.

 

Seriously though. The medicinal effects of genre film might not yet be properly understood, but all who have dedicated themselves to the art form...

Posted 19 Jan 2017 @ 4:00pm

As someone socialised to navigate through heterosexual spaces, I never considered that one day I’d have to readjust so much of my perspective and my behaviours to safely (and without offending anyone) navigate through homosexual ones.

 

A lot of what I was taught growing up – whether it was directly through my parents or indirectly through whatever social rules I absorbed by...

Posted 19 Jan 2017 @ 12:02pm

The last four years have seen cuts proposed to community radio funding on a number of occasions, with $1.4 million ripped from its underbelly over the next four years (from 2016 on).

 

The above is a perfectly normal sentence if divorced from its context. But once we actually consider what this means to millions of people, it’s a sobering and altogether infuriating situation....

Posted 17 Jan 2017 @ 12:35pm

Welcome to the first of 2017's weekly rundowns on what's hot in the coming seven days of cinematic releases. It's good to be back! Two films premiere this week, but I wouldn't dare omit my opinions on those that slipped under the holiday radar.

 

Four major studio features and one exciting new indie flick grace the page today, along with a genuine plea to avoid one of the big...

Posted 13 Jan 2017 @ 11:12am

Parramatta Park is hosting a Hottest 100 party this Australia Day with live music from L-Fresh The Lion, Olympia, VXV and more.

 

There is no real reason triple j’s Hottest 100 should matter as much as it does.

 

It is a glorified user feedback form, one hampered by a series of major restrictions and odd biases (...

Posted 4 Jan 2017 @ 11:00am

It’s a brand new year, ladies and gentlemen, so if you have a little bit of money left over from the silly season, here’s what you could be spending it on.

 

It’s a pretty slow start to the month, but things do gear up on Wednesday January 18 when Gravity Rush 2 crash-lands onto PS4. It’s the sequel to the PS Vita original that has you returning to a world where the laws of...

Posted 29 Dec 2016 @ 3:00pm

Let’s talk about how queers can deal with this potentially awful, awkward or just difficult time of year. 

 

Christmas and New Year’s is always talked up as the time to be with your loved ones, but what happens when your family aren’t exactly down with you being queer?

 

What happens if your family is stacked with less- than-loving homophobes? Or if they’re just a...

Posted 29 Dec 2016 @ 1:35pm

With more than a handful of brilliant talents blooming across the scope of Australian electronic music at the moment, the community is really coming into a resurgent and resounding period of creative expression.

 

You only need look at the international exposure and recognition that such craftsmen as Harvey Sutherland and Mall Grab are getting to know there’s something very...

Posted 22 Dec 2016 @ 12:10pm

The line between music videos and advertising has forever been blurred. 

 

Long before the advent of contemporary means of branding, videos have always been about selling the music itself – about presenting songs in a way that makes them quantifiable, and reducing hard-to-define sonic elements into commercially viable chunks. Even Bob Dylan’s ‘Subterranean Homesick Blues’, oft...

Posted 21 Dec 2016 @ 11:19am

It’s been a tremendous year.

 

A year of death, a year of rebirth, and a year of renewal.

 

A year in which we were reminded of our individual and collective fragility.

 

A year that saw doyens of music and popular culture pass so frequently that it became an almost familiar feeling.

 

A year in which Fabric nightclub, one of electronic...

Posted 21 Dec 2016 @ 10:05am

Welcome to the BRAG's weekly rundown of what's hot in the coming seven days of cinematic releases. After Disney's surprisingly divisive Star Wars effort (which I dug), the Boxing Day Onslaught has finally arrived: the cinematic equivalent of...

Posted 20 Dec 2016 @ 2:39pm

Queers have a whole gamut of reasons to feel hard done by.

 

I mean, our rights are up for public discussion, we’re discriminated against when it comes to work, health and education, we’re still represented poorly (or under-represented) in the media and we’re still hated by some people simply for existing as we are. 

 

This week, I don’t want to talk about those big...

Posted 16 Dec 2016 @ 12:43pm

In 1963, author and political commentator James Baldwin was interviewed on television by noted talking head Kenneth Clark.

 

The conversation was incendiary, touching on everything from Cuba to communism and murder, with the ever-eloquent Baldwin blasting whatever subject he turned his mind to. But it was after six solid minutes that he began recounting a story that would stick...

Posted 15 Dec 2016 @ 12:49pm

Christmas Gift Ideas

 

Logitech G933 Artemis Spectrum Wireless Gaming Headset ($299.95)

 

 

Buying a gaming headset can present a frustratingly difficult choice, but the G933 takes all that indecision away with a slew of nifty...

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