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New Venom Film Is An Improvement On Its Predecessor – Essentially Pop



Venom: Let there be Carnage is an adequate superhero film that’s improved upon the strength of its predecessor, but hasn’t yet resolved its weaknesses. It’s a worthwhile watch if you’re a particular fan of Tom Hardy’s, or you’d like to see the ups and downs of a surreal, quasi-romantic relationship between a man and the alien sharing his body. Make sure to stay for the post-credits scene.

The film’s core is the wonderful performance of Tom Hardy as both Eddie Brock, an investigative reporter, and the titular Venom, a brain/chocolate eating alien symbiotic life form that shares his body. While the first film set this particular scenario up, it’s Venom: Let there be Carnage that totally gives itself over to this idea, so if you didn’t like the darkly humorous take on this fairly unique concept in the first film, you should avoid this. If, however, you did like it, the you’ll love how this sequel takes their relationship to new highs and lows, with the absolute highlight being a rather messy “breakup” scene, and the following scene where Venom finds his identity in a soul-searching scene layered with double-entendres. Nothing about this movie is subtle, and the presence of Venom and Eddie Brock is suffocating to the rest of the film – there’s not much more to add, and it’s not going to be very relevant to your enjoyment, because if you’re watching Venom: Let there be Carnage, you’re watching it for this.

Of course, Venom isn’t the only character mentioned in the title of this film, but there’s not a lot to really say about Carnage. Fans of the comics will be disappointed at the stark differences from the original, but he makes for a serviceable enough antagonist. Woody Harrelson’s performance is on the better side of alright, but he wasn’t given much content to work with, and so Cletus Kasady/Carnage are consigned to the lower tier of superhero film villains. Some praise has to go to the scene where Carnage first emerges, which genuinely had me gripping the edge of my seat, with the notable decision to portray it almost as if it were a horror film. Kasady and Carnage could’ve been much better had the same tone been kept movie-wide, but it’s unfortunately absent afterwards.

The same overall thoughts go for Naomie Harris’ character, Shriek. Her sound-based powers are a fairly obvious setup for the final act, and her performance isn’t particularly noteworthy, and the tension she brings to the film is based on the level of investment you have in the rest of the supporting cast. Anne and Doctor Dan return from the first film, but exist less as characters and more as plot devices. Stephen Graham turns in an unexpectedly good performance as Patrick Mulligan, a police officer with ties to Shriek, Carnage, and Eddie Brock. It’s almost as if he didn’t realise the almost goofy tone of the film and decided to play it completely straight, giving an understated performance that wouldn’t be out of place in a gritty police drama. Of particular note is a scene where he learns that someone he thought he’d accidentally killed is actually alive. It appears his character is being set up to play a greater role in a future sequel to this film – and since Sony seem resolved to milk the Marvel character rights they do have for all they’re worth, we’ll see if he can bring the same energy in the future, and hopefully it fits as oddly well as it does here.

Venom: Let there be Carnage doesn’t fix the mistakes the first film made, despite improving what little good material there was. The other characters are still somewhat underwritten, with weak dialogue and motivations, especially in our duo/trio of antagonists. There’s at least two outright cringe worthy lines, both of which happen in the final act’s big action set piece, which leaves a poor aftertaste for the film. Better writing will solve most of the issues for the next film, and I’m glad to see it appears Tom Hardy has a genuine interest in the future of this character, and this budding, weird Marvel grey-area franchise. I’m mildly excited to see what’ll happen next.

Overall, Venom: Let there be Carnage should be somewhat low in the list of things you should watch in the immediate future. It’s not going to change your life, but I at least was shocked by the increase in quality from its nearly unwatchable predecessor. It’s good enough, fun enough, and short enough to be a worthwhile watch, if you manage your expectations. Again, remember to watch the post-credits scene, because it’s of particular importance to Marvel fans.

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Pop Music

The Roughhousers Add A ‘Baby Brother’ With Rousing Cover Of Bill Carter’s Rockabilly Classic – Check Out The Incredible Music Video!



Continuing with their wonderful run of songs that are equally appropriate for kids as well as adults, The Roughhousers’ latest single, ‘Baby Brother’, is their take on the rockabilly classic by Bill Carter & The Rovin Gamblers, originally released back in 1959. We’re excited to premiere the fantastic new music video, which accompanies the single.

The music video for ‘Baby Brother’ sees Grey DeLisle singing from the point of view of an older sibling, about their new baby brother who doesn’t seem to be interested in doing things like everyone else. In fact, they are incredibly different – baby brother in learning to crawl, chooses to do it on the kitchen wall rather than ambulate across the floor; he’s also fond of swimming in the fishbowl, which is okay, so long as he doesn’t eat the fish. It’s easy to think that this might stem from some resentment of the attention that baby brother is getting, until you hear that the family originally found him on the front porch in a “crazy little basket”…and his hair is blue…but they think the “otherworld” of him.

It seems that we may have a clue to the origins of the baby brother, when in the final verse, the sibling,

“bought my baby brother a toy balloon / he let it get away, and it floated toward the moon / instead of crying he climbed up on the fence / started flapping his arms and we ain’t seen him since”

It’s a bittersweet end to the song but the child rationalises it in their own lovely way, with the line, “although you’re out in outer spaces I can still see your faces”. What happened to the baby brother? Perhaps we’ll find out one day!

The Roughhousers are not just known for their great music but also the wonderful videos that accompany their releases, and ‘Baby Brother’ is certainly no exception, with a fantastic animated clip, that sees Grey DeLisle floating in space on a small satellite not much bigger than her, as a tiny rocket takes off, presumably with Baby Brother inside. The clip illustrates the lyrics in a brightly coloured retro style, and Roughhousers guitarist Eddie Clendening pops up as the baby brother himself in the “crazy basket” – complete with blue hair. It’s a great song and a fab video and will keep both kids and adults alike well and truly entertained!

The Roughhousers Full Band - photo credit: Neuman Mannas
The Roughhousers Full Band – photo credit: Neuman Mannas

Grey and Eddie are joined by their bandmates, Deke Dickerson, pianist Carl Sonny Leland, bassist Murry Hammond of The Old 97s, and X’s drummer DJ Bonebrake on their mission to create unique tunes, and ‘Baby Brother’ is a fun and very welcome addition to their rapidly increasing repertoire, which also includes previous releases, ‘Princess Mike‘ ‘Azucar‘, and ‘Toenail Soup’.

Watch the fab video for ‘Baby Brother’ below and follow The Roughhousers online on their official website, Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram. Don’t forget to also check out more about Grey DeLisle on her website too! 

Baby Brother - The Roughhousers

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Pop Music

It’s A ‘Blue Sky’ Up Above For Foundry Town Survivors New Single



Foundry Town Survivors return with their latest single, ‘Blue Sky’. The track is the latest release from the band’s self-titled EP, and features a music video that’s an homage to the very first music video: Bob Dylan’s ‘Subterranean Homesick Blues’.

And just like the Dylan classic, which drew attention to the burgeoning war in Vietnam, as well as the civil rights movement, this latest track serves as a protest song, simply putting forward by way of hand drawn lyric cards the consequences of what happens when society is left to remain ignorant. “No information” which leads to “No expectation”, leading in turn to “No conversation”, and “No transformation”. Furthermore, “No education” leads to “No inspiration”, and “No exploration”, and “No innovation”. Ignorance leaves us vulnerable and open to exploitation by unscrupulous hucksters; it’s a sobering thought, and could well be applied to a number of situations over the past few years, where the ignorant and under-educated left themselves open to the ideas of those who had only their own interests at heart.

Photo from behind the scenes of the ‘Blue Sky’ video shoot

Shot in black and white, on location in Pasadena in front of the loading dock of Mission Tile West, the video is as simple as the song itself, and of course, it doesn’t need to be complicated: it’s a message that can be put across with without too much elaboration.

The clip shows band members Tommy Johnsmiller and Mark Tomorsky alternately showing the lyric placards, while standing front of a tall roller door which serves as a green screen for images such as the band’s logo, and photos of the pair themselves. We’re also treated to images of Foundry Town Survivors’ performances, and, preceded by a card reading, “guitar solo”, a clip of the band playing at the Montreux Jazz Festival.

Speaking of ‘Blue Sky’, the band said,

“Here are the warning signs of things going to hell on a sled and how you can fight to make it a better place.”

It’s a simple warning, but it packs a hard punch, and we’d better take heed, if we want our blue skies to stay blue.

Watch the video for ‘Blue Sky’ below, and check out more about Foundry Town Survivors online on their official website, where you can also read about the making of the video for ‘Blue Sky‘. You can also find them online on Spotify, YouTube, Twitter, Facebook, and Instagram.

Foundry Town Survivors - "Blue Sky" (Official Music Video)

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Pop Music

RIP Youth Teams Up With R3HAB In Support Of This Year’s Pride Month



It’s A Vibe’ is the latest hit single to come from LA-based pop-star RIP Youth. Having already broken into the top 10 on the iTunes Australian Dance chart, the new single has now been reworked into an energy-filled dance-floor anthem as R3HAB works his magic, creating the hit of a lifetime.

The Australian-born singer is supporting this year’s Pride Month with a single that has been masterfully crafted, and fit for any high-intensity situation. Adding in some heavy electro-house grooves, perfect for the dark alluring dance floors, or really getting a sweat on in your next spinning class.

Multi-platinum producer R3HAB has been partnered with the fitness fanatics over at Peloton, creating ‘It’s A Vibe’ into a work-out-fuelled hit. The single was premiered by Cody Rigsby and Peloton’s DJ John Michael during their ‘Pride Live DJ Ride’.

Talking about his experience and love for R3HAB, RIP Youth has stated,

“I’ve always been a fan of R3HAB since we worked together a while back so when I suggested to Peloton we reach out, we were so glad he answered the call. I’ve loved seeing him take this song in an exciting new direction and reinvent an exclusive remix of ‘It’s A Vibe’ to help Peloton kick off Pride Month. I’m obsessed with Peloton and how they’ve raised a community movement like no other.”

You can listen to the new single here:

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