Tag Archives: UK

Metallica – Live At The O2 Arena!

London, England. Sunday 22nd October 2017

*support from Kvelertak (check them out, they are great!)*

There was a great sense of anticipation for Metallica’s first UK tour for over 8 years! The band have come over many times for festival appearances and it was great to finally see James Hetfield and his band of merry rockers take over the O2 Arena for 2 hours of pure rock!

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As this is a tour to promote their latest album HARDWIRED…TO SELF DESTRUCT, the album is given plenty of life in a setlist which blends the new songs with a great mix of the classics! ‘Hardwired’ and ‘Atlas, Rise!’ kick off the fresher section of the list, then we move on to ‘Seek & Destroy’ which gets the old and new fans jumping!

While the set goes between the old and new, there are very few gaps for air as the show is relentless and exciting throughout. The stage, being in the middle of the arena, meant that everyone could see the band clearly. Also, a great number of boxes floated around the stage which projected various images and added to an already incredible aesthetic for the show. We see the screens look like old TV’s, display fan art of the band and even depict music video sections.

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‘Fuel’ sees the literal flames rise from the stage and ‘Moth Into Flame’ see a great array of lights fly around the stage in a visual spectacular! The highlight for me was reaching them last few songs. With ‘Master Of Puppets’ leading the end of the set with a blistering nine-minute performance and the encore providing the beautifully chilling ‘Nothing Else Matters’ and the almighty ‘Enter Sandman’ which was the perfect end to a brilliant show.

While I would have liked a few more classic tracks and a couple less of the newer songs, I can’t say I wasn’t blown away. The stage was set perfectly for all to see, the screens provided a great visual spectacle for all to see. Whether it was the ever-impressive vocals of James Hetfield, the hard-smacked drums of Lars Ulrich or the great guitar work of Kirk and Robert, they all made it work well. For a band that have 36 years of history, they still can pack out a crowd and wow them with so much energy!

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All I will say is that it better not be eight years again for the guys to tour our fine country. This is rock music at its finest!

Final Rating: 9.5/10

Written by Jonjo Cosgrove

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Rick and Morty – Season Three Episode Two REVIEW!

‘Rickmancing The Stone’

*Some Mild Spoilers Ahead*

After nearly two years, Rick and Morty is officially back on our TV screens (except for Netflix which seems to be making UK fans really struggle by making us wait 6 more days for the episode). After ‘The Rickshank Rickdemption’ brought back the show with an explosive opener, ‘Rickmancing The Stone’ is the first episode to play with the newly altered equilibrium and get into a fun and crazy story.

With a start that shows Jerry about to leave the Smith household, Summer can’t wait to get away from her dad and Morty is still confused over what to do with his parent’s divorce. Jerry is called a “loser” in the wind (which I am sure we have all called him). Rick, who clearly enjoys having Jerry away from the family, is happy to get back into his adventures with his grandchildren.

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The episode takes us to a world that is clearly based on Mad Max (and looks bloody awesome to be fair). It is here that Rick finds himself looking to take some great power from the people, and uses Morty (who looks a bit like Rafael Nadal) to challenge anyone who gets in his way. While Morty is left to vent some of his frustrations about his parents, Summer sees this world as a way for her to escape the problems of home life (and find love with a guy wearing a bucket). But what about Beth, who is stuck at home?

Well, turns out that Rick has kept Morty and Summer away from home for a bit too long this time, but has a great idea to help cover for them and it even convinces Beth that they are home. I don’t want to give too much away, but some of the greatest comedy comes from the scenes back at the house instead of the Mad Max world. There’s a few moments which do drag in the first half of the episode, but the scenes going back and forth between dimensions is where the real laughs develop.

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I could make about another 5 pages of notes on this episode, because this is a great episode and it brings back the style that we got used to in season one. Taking place in another world with two stories that are loosely linked. Justin Roiland as usual can entertain us a lot with the back and forth of the two main characters, Spencer Grammer is definitely getting to make Summer a much better character than how she started. Since the middle of Season One, Summer has grown to be a fantastic part of this show and I enjoy every moment she is present.

Overall, this episode is great. The world following the “boom-boom” is one that is visually wonderful and brings some unexpected jokes from the people in that place. The writing is on fine point and proves that the quality stays high even after all this time. I am sure a repeated viewing will make this episode look better, but for now I am looking forward to next week with ‘Pickle Rick’ (can’t believe that is the name of the episode!)

Final rating: 8.5/10

Written By Jonjo Cosgrove

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Eight Star Wars Facts You May Not Know

The Star Wars franchise has been around for 40 years, and with the upcoming release of The Last Jedi this December, there is no sign of slowing down for the hit film series. While many fans may know the inside and out of the films, there are a few facts about Star Wars that may have passed you by. Did you know who almost became Princess Leia or the fact that Jar Jar Binks may be more popular than first thought? Have a read of these eight Star Wars facts and I hope you enjoy them.

Ahmed Best Won An Award For Playing Jar Jar Binks

No, I haven’t been drinking too much of that blue milk. Jar Jar Binks actor Ahmed Best is indeed an award winner for portraying the bumbling Gungan, but it is in the best way possible. While little praise was given to the character in the prequel trilogy, Ahmed made a great comeback with him reprising his Jar Jar role in all the Robot Chicken Star Wars specials. It was in the second special where Ahmed Best finally got rewarded for portraying Jar Jar Binks…and it is done really well. No matter what you thought of the character in The Phantom Menace, you will enjoy this video! And also, do we really believe the Darth Jar Jar thing?

Poe Dameron was meant to die

Hard to believe that the best pilot in the resistance wasn’t going to make it past his first film, but we are certainly glad that he did. In The Force Awakens, the character was originally envisioned to be biting the bullet at that point where the TIE fighter crashes onto Jakku. J.J. Abrams apparently thought better of this after casting Oscar Isaac in the part. While Poe was heavily featured in the first act, he was nowhere to be seen till the final assault on the Starkiller Base (and the rescue of the star map). Hopefully The Last Jedi will see him in a more prominent role throughout.

A Woman Originally Portrayed The Emperor

How many of you remember watching The Empire Strikes Back when it was first released? You may have noticed since re-watching the film once it was released on DVD that it had a noticeable yet justifiable change. We all know that Ian McDiarmid portrayed The Emperor in Return Of The Jedi and again in the prequel trilogy (and he was brilliant). But, the Emperor was first portrayed by Marjorie Eaton. Yes, a woman was The Emperor under a lot of make-up and wearing chimpanzee eyes that had been placed on her. While the woman was the body, the voice was by Clive Revill. Thankfully, this is one thing I am glad to have seen changed and Ian McDiarmid is the better Emperor by far!

Jodie Foster, Sissy Spacek and Cindy Williams Could Have Been Princess Leia

There were a few actresses who apparently went for the role of Princess Leia Organa. While we know that Carrie Fisher eventually got the role, her book ‘The Princess Diarist’ reveals that she auditioned for Carrie at the same time, as did the actress Sissy Spacek. Imagine if Sissy was cast as Leia? Also, Cindy Williams apparently went for the role too and also Jodie Foster. While I think Jodie Foster would have been superb, she would have only been 13-14 at the time of filming and definitely would not help to keep Luke and Leia at the same age. Thank goodness Carrie Fisher took the role.

All The Star Wars Films Have Been Shot In England

That is true, if you leave out the poor excuse of an animated film from 2008 (but I do love the Clone Wars show). All the live-action films so far have been filmed in England, starting with the first movie shooting in Elstree back in 1976 (which in turn has become the basis of its own film). Since then, all the films have been shot in England and places around the UK. Yes, certain desert and snow scenes had been shot in other countries, but the Star Wars franchise can honestly call England its home. Who Framed Roger Rabbit, Alien and even entries in the Marvel Cinematic Universe and the DC Extended Universe have since come to the UK to shoot mainly because of the great work made in the space opera franchise!

Loads Of People Have Played Darth Vader

We all know Darth Vader as soon as we hear that voice, even in spin-off movie Rogue One we saw James Earl Jones come back as the lord of the Sith! But, the man inside the suit has changed numerous times. Leading the original trilogy in the suit was David Prowse, he had a great presence and even today at the age of 81 has a powerful handshake that will crush your wrist (and the man is a pleasure to meet). We also have Hayden Christensen in the suit in Episode III. Then we also have Bob Anderson, Gene Bryant, Spencer Wilding, Daniel Naprous and Sebastian Shaw inside the iconic black armour. Plus, one last mention to Ben Burtt who made the iconic sounds of Star Wars which includes the breathing of Darth Vader! Darth Vader is one of the biggest villain’s in the world and it is clear to see how much has gone into the character over the years (and don’t even get me started on the animated shows and video game performances).

Rey’s hairstyle for Episode VIII was kept secret

As we saw in the original trilogy, Carrie Fisher’s hairstyle was changed in each film and each look was considered popular and started trends. With the character of Rey, it seemed to start the trends again with her three buns style in The Force Awakens. But, did many of you notice that in the lead -up to this film that she had her hair covered a number of times? There was a workout photo where Daisy Ridley was shown with a pillowcase around her head to keep it secret. With the success of The Force Awakens and the popularity of Ridley’s Rey, I think it is justified that all these measures are made to keep back any spoilers…including the hair on Daisy’s head (and what about Mark Hamill’s beard or the lovely scar that Adam Driver’s Kylo should be sporting?).

Anthony Daniels Is In EVERYTHING as C3PO!

For 40 years, Star Wars has had many constants in it. The lightsabers, the Jedi, X-Wings, exotic planets, superb villains and a certain protocol droid who has been there for all of it. Anthony Daniels has not been afraid of type-casting by taking his portrayal of C3PO to all the different medias that is available. To make it nine out of nine live-action films, Anthony Daniels will be back as C3PO in The Last Jedi. Plus he has appeared in Star Wars: The Clone Wars, Star Wars: Rebels, The Muppet Show. Sesame Street, Lilo and Stitch, Robot Chicken and even The Lego Movie in 2014! Also, how many video games and other shows has he appeared in? Anthony Daniels has made C3PO a part of himself and there is no way you could ever have anyone else in this role!

What did you think of these facts? Have you got any facts that you want to share? Message on this post and thank you for reading.

Written by Jonjo Cosgrove

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Ed Sheeran – Castle On The Hill (single review)

So, we get two Ed Sheeran songs at the same time? Thanks Ed! Where the first was a relaxed tune with a light dance beat to it, this song feels a lot more powerful and personal. Mentioning breaking his leg as a child and speaking of events in his life, this track evokes more intimate feelings than the other song.

Did I mention there is some piano in this? Ed seems to have gone bigger on production for the new album, ‘Castle On The Hill’ is proof that he is expanding and developing his music all the time. This measures up to previous hits like ‘Photograph’ and ‘One’ in terms of getting deeper into the mind of Ed Sheeran and I think he is at his best when the words are almost screaming out from him.

Out of the two new tracks, I think ‘Castle On The Hill’ is the one I like the most. Ed Sheeran is a great songwriter, and the problem is that I honestly do enjoy a lot of his music. There are very few tunes from his back catalogue I find a problem with. With that, get listening to both this and ‘Shape Of You’ as we prepare for the release of ÷ very soon!

Final Rating: 9.5/10

Written by Jonjo Cosgrove

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Ed Sheeran – Shape Of You (single review)

I can believe this song was meant to be his gift to Rihanna to record, but aren’t we glad he actually took it on instead? The minimal R’n’B beat is indeed part of what establishes this comeback from one of the greatest musicians of this millennium, it can be listened to with your feet up or danced to in a club. Ed does manage to blend genres well, and the result shown is one of musical genius.

We had them messages earlier in the week hinting to lyrics for the songs and I am glad they make more sense as lyrics to separate tracks than the same song. This song is easy going and just a nice track to enjoy the return of Ed to the music scene. This does build the anticipation towards the ÷ album (glad he is keeping to a theme).

Ed Sheeran will undoubtedly be topping charts all around the world, either with ‘Shape Of You’ or ‘Castle On The Hill’. Two very different tracks, but very significant and strong songs to enter into 2017 with. Get yourself moving to this taster of album three while we wait for its release later this year.

Final rating: 9/10

Written by Jonjo Cosgrove

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