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10 items from 2013

Radiophonic Workshop: the shadowy pioneers of electronic sound

23 November 2013 4:06 PM, PST | The Guardian - TV News | See recent The Guardian - TV News news »

As pop luminaries queue up to appear on their forthcoming LP, we talk to surviving members of the BBC's Radiophonic Workshop, responsible for the theme music for many classic shows, including Doctor Who

Listen to the band's exclusive new remix of the Dr Who theme tune here

As musical legends go, they're a funny bunch. Five well-turned-out but unassuming gents, harrumphing and making small talk, they could easily be retired accountants at the golf club – were it not for the fact that they're busy wiring together enough vintage synthesisers and tape machines to make a young hipster techno producer faint with joy, all while the most peculiar boinging noises emerge from various speakers. Oh, and their manager's on the phone to Hot Chip's people, while the drummer from the Prodigy is sitting in the corner tapping his sticks.

As per usual, though, the veteran tinkerers are mostly concerned with matters electronic. »

- Joe Muggs

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When Tom Baker Met The Human League

20 November 2013 8:48 AM, PST | Obsessed with Film | See recent Obsessed with Film news »

For many, including myself, Tom Baker’s Fourth is the Doctor, the definite article, you might say. And though his scarf, floppy hat & love of jelly babies have helped, there’s a long-forgotten musical facet to his appeal.

All but the most dedicated of Whovians might not even know it exists, until now. Even though it involves a group who’d become one of the biggest electronic/pop acts of the Eighties, the Human League’s 1981 instrumental ‘ Tom Baker’, released towards the end of the great man’s time in the Tardis, remains to most a relic of a band having regenerated its line-up and in the process of finding its sound, one which even they themselves appear to have quickly disowned.

Nonetheless, let’s delve deeper, with a few timely diversions, and hopefully in the process raise it from a B-side (first issued with the ‘Boys & Girls’ single) to an undisputed A! »

- Chris Morley

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Film Review: ‘Southcliffe’

17 October 2013 10:58 AM, PDT | Variety - Film News | See recent Variety - Film News news »

A raw, inconsolable anguish cuts through the artfully scrambled layers of “Southcliffe,” an uneven but powerful four-part study of a small English village reeling from the all-too-believable tragedy of a mass shooting. Following his masterful 2011 debut feature, “Martha Marcy May Marlene,” director Sean Durkin employs the miniseries format to tell another bleak, violent story that drifts backward and forward through time, examining the brief buildup to horror and its prolonged aftermath from a multitude of telling angles. Unsurprisingly, Durkin has a trickier time processing an entire community’s grief than he did probing an individual’s trauma in “Martha Marcy,” but if the narrative imprecisions and nonlinear construction feel a bit less assured here, the performances nonetheless show a searing level of commitment that sustains this swift, absorbing 190-minute work from start to finish.

Well received in its airings in the U.K. before its recent North American premiere at Toronto, »

- Justin Chang

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Leona Lewis takes Holiday! for first acting role

24 September 2013 12:45 AM, PDT | The Guardian - Film News | See recent The Guardian - Film News news »

UK X-Factor winner to star in an 80s-set rom-com musical described as "the ultimate chick flick" by its producers

X-Factor UK winner Leona Lewis is to make her acting debut in the musical romance Holiday!, billed by its makers as the "ultimate chick flick".

Lewis will play an unspecified role in the 80s-themed movie, which tells the story of a sunkissed love triangle and an old flame against the background of an upcoming wedding, according to The Hollywood Reporter.

Originally, titled Walking on Sunshine, it is being produced by Vertigo Films, the production company behind 2010's StreetDance 3D.

As well as Lewis, Holiday! will also feature Sense & Sensibility's Greg Wise, British comic Katy Brand and newcomers Annabel Scholey, Hannah Arterton and Giulio Berruti. The film is being shot in Italy and the UK for a release in summer 2014.

Holiday! will feature a soundtrack of songs from the era, including Human League »

- Ben Child

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Shoot begins on musical Holiday!

23 September 2013 6:42 AM, PDT | ScreenDaily | See recent ScreenDaily news »

Vertigo Films to release musical, including the feature debut of singer Leona Lewis, in 2014.

Principal photography has begun on Holiday! and will shoot for five weeks on location in Italy and the UK, according to Vertigo Films.

For production details visit


The musical comedy centres on Maddie (Hannah Arterton) who is set to marry Raf (Giulio Berruti) after a whirlwind romance in Italy. Maddie invites her sister Taylor (Annabel Scholey) to the wedding without realising Raf is her sister’s ex-holiday fling.

The film will include 1980s songs such as the Human League’s Don’t You Want Me Baby, Madonna’s Holiday, Cyndi Lauper’s Girls Just Wanna Have Fun, and Wham’s Wake Me Up Before You Go Go.

Other cast members include Greg Wise (Sense & Sensibility), UK comedian Katy Brand and Grammy nominated singer-songwriter Leona Lewis in her first film role.

Directors are Max & Dania (StreetDance). Music producer and composer is Anne Dudley ([link »

- (Michael Rosser)

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Leona Lewis To Make Film Debut With “Holiday!”

23 September 2013 6:04 AM, PDT | The Hollywood News | See recent The Hollywood News news »

Here is some nice and happy bubblegum film news to make your teeth rot – X Factor winner and Princess of the soppy ballad Leona Lewis is set to make her acting debut in the latest project from Streetdance creators Max Giwa and Dania Pasquini.

Originally titled Walking On Sunshine, Holiday! follows Maddie as she is preparing to marry her Spanish tutor Raf, but unknown to Maddie, her sister Taylor is her husband to be’s ex girlfriend. Of course the role should not be much of a tall order for Lewis, as Holiday! is being billed as a British musical which will include hits from the 80s with artists like  Wham!, Madonna and Human League all included in the soundtrack.

Other cast members that have been confirmed include Annabel Scholey, Hannah Arterton, Giulio BerrutiGreg Wise and comedian Katy Brand. The film is being geared up for a Summer 2014 release via Vertigo Films. »

- Lucy Cave

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Leona Lewis to make movie debut in 'Holiday!' musical

23 September 2013 5:25 AM, PDT | Digital Spy | See recent Digital Spy - Movie News news »

Leona Lewis will make her movie debut in Holiday!

The X Factor winner will arrive on the big screen in the musical from the StreetDance series filmmakers, according to The Hollywood Reporter.

Annabel Scholey, Hannah Arterton, Giulio Berruti, Greg Wise and Katy Brand will also feature in director Max Giwa and Dania Pasquini's film.

Formerly titled Walking On Sunshine, the film will centre around a holiday love triangle and approaching marriage.

Les Misérables music producer and composer Anne Dudley has signed up for the project.

The soundtrack will feature 1980s hits including Human League's 'Don't You Want Me Baby', Madonna's 'Holiday', Cyndi Lauper's Girls Just Wanna Have Fun' and Wham's 'Wake Me Up Before You Go Go'.

Lewis was recently named the bestselling X Factor act in the UK.

Holiday! will shoot in the UK and Italy.

Watch the trailer for StreetDance 2 below: »

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The songs our parents gave us

10 September 2013 11:19 AM, PDT | The Guardian - Film News | See recent The Guardian - Film News news »

The music we grow up with shapes our tastes in later life, according to a study by Cornell University. We asked Guardian writers to tell us about the songs that take them back to their childhood homes

'My mother would listen to the Carpenters while ironing'

Of the handful of albums my parents owned, it was The Carpenters' Singles 1969-1973 that struck me the most. I remember being particularly fascinated by Rainy Days and Mondays. With the benefit of hindsight, I suspect it was because it was the first piece of music I had ever heard that appeared to perfectly suit the circumstances in which I heard it. My mother would listen to the Carpenters in the afternoon, while doing the ironing in the front room, and I remember thinking that was what the woman in the song was probably doing too. In my head she was singing it »

- Dorian Lynskey, Tim Jonze, Bim Adewunmi, Rebecca Nicholson, Alexis Petridis, Michael Hann, Paula Cocozza, John Crace, Lucy Mangan, Tim Dowling, Nosheen Iqbal

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Southcliffe; I Love My Country – TV review

4 August 2013 4:00 PM, PDT | The Guardian - TV News | See recent The Guardian - TV News news »

Sunday is the night for misery TV – but brilliant drama is worth the pain

A foggy morning in an English market town. A woman is weeding her front garden. Suddenly, the dull crack of a gunshot rudely breaks the peace. The woman flinches, reaches for her tummy where the pain is. There's blood, she doesn't understand, of course she doesn't. Next the sound of reloading, quickly followed by another shot …

It's a bleak start to Southcliffe (Channel 4, Sunday). And things don't lighten up. We go back in time a while, into the life of the town, and the life of Stephen, the shooter. He lives at the end of a row of cottages with his elderly mother, whom he cares for. A loner, obsessed with the military, and with guns, he's angry with everyone, with the world. A friendship with a young soldier returning from Helmand goes bad – very, »

- Sam Wollaston

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When Bowie met Burroughs

9 March 2013 1:01 AM, PST | The Guardian - Film News | See recent The Guardian - Film News news »

Trend-setter, impresario, phenomenon: David Bowie has shaped entire subcultures. Jon Savage traces the star's talent for reinvention and his catalytic encounter with William Burroughs

William Burroughs: The weapon of the Wild Boys is a bowie knife, an 18in bowie knife, did you know that?

David Bowie: An 18in bowie knife … you don't do things by halves do you? No, I didn't know that was their weapon. The name Bowie just appealed to me when I was younger. I was into a kind of heavy philosophy thing when I was 16 years old, and I wanted a truism about cutting through the lies and all that.

On 28 February 1974, Rolling Stone magazine published a remarkable encounter between David Bowie and William Burroughs. Entitled "Beat Godfather Meets Glitter Mainman", the event had been hosted in November 1973 by the American journalist A Craig Copetas. As published it took the form of a Q »

- Jon Savage

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