Saturday, December 17, 2016

[Review] Childhood's End

The three part mini series is not exactly an adaptation. They treated the source material fairly freely, but that is not necessary a bad thing. Clarke wrote his novel in the middle of Cold War (1958), so there was a divided world - there was Communist World and Democratic World. I remember reading it around the time I read Orwell's 1984, when I was in my mid-teens. Both books are horrific depictions, painting a bleak image of humanity. But somehow, after stripping Childhood's End of any "signs of time" and leaving the bare story, it appears clear how abysmally depressing it really is.

Friday, December 16, 2016

Watched in 2016 - Z-Class Movies

Friday evening, a relaxing bath, a gallon glass of wine - all this sets up a perfect mood for watching a movie. And what is more relaxing than watching sharks eating people? Or tremors swallowing up the Eiffel Tower? You are absolutely right - not much.
My affinity for Z-class movies stems from the deep need of human psyche - to see bad guys get what they deserve and to experience a total havoc wrecked upon the face of the Earth... I mean the... ugh, anthropological value, yeah.
The post everyone has been waiting for!
Probably not.

Thursday, December 15, 2016

Throwback Thursday Part 14

Today's Throwback Thursday pays homage to soundtracks from 2016.

Thursday, December 08, 2016

Throwback Thursday Part 13


Today's Throwback Thursday leads us to... the 90's! More specifically - to the movie (only!) soundtracks from the 90's. Also, I don;t care if the song, if there's any, was recorded earlier. It appeared on the 90's soundtrack.
I hope you enjoy!

Thursday, December 01, 2016

Throwback Thursday Part 12

The December has come. So today's Throwback Thursday takes us back to 12 songs for each month. This time - not my association with any of them, only one representing each month because of the lyrics.

Thursday, October 20, 2016

Throwback Thursday Part 11

The year is 1989. You may ask why and this would be a good question given my randomness in picking up years (before it was 1979 and 1993 respectively). However obscure, there is always a reason for my choosing a certain year.
But I won't say cause I'm all mysterious...

Thursday, October 13, 2016

Throwback Thursday Ep 10

Since tomorrow is the Education Day in my country (shout-out to myself, YO!), today's Throwback Thursday is about school. However, no The Police, Pink Floyd, Nirvana or Pearl Jam.

Thursday, September 29, 2016

New Releases from Taiwan Featuring Roy Qiu

Well, lately I've been listening to the music almost exclusively on spotify, coming for MVs only to write a post. This time I went to YT directly and look what hit me first.
The music of course...

Throwback Thursday Ep 09

Throwback to sadness, because September is sadness. No REM< no Tears in Heaven though. And no, no Hallelujah. This was actually a very hard list for me, because I'm musically irrevocably damaged and I love sad songs. I even have a playlist called "Weltschmerz", for Autumnal rain's sake! And sometimes a song is not even sad, but it exudes sadness. Like Simon & Garfunkel's Sound of Silence. Or maybe it is a sad song, but more than that, it paints a bleak, dystopian vision. So I had to chose.
Prepare tissues.

Thursday, September 15, 2016

Throwback Thursday Ep 08

The year is 1993. Count your blessings because I did not put Duran Duran or Snow there. I also didn't include songs that only in 1993 became popular, but were recorded in the most wonderful 80's.

Thursday, September 08, 2016

Li Ronghao new song [ 李榮浩 — 不說]

This man has a marvelous voice and it unfurls fully in ballads. This song, "Don't Say", is part of the OST to the movie I Belonged to You. His lower notes are just lovely. Like always.

Throwback Thursday Ep 07


The year is 1979, and it was a good year^^. I am not going to list so obvious choices like Queen, Abba, AC/DC, Pink Floyd, The Police or The Clash, but some other gems.

Thursday, August 11, 2016

JJ Lin - Infinity And Beyond

Especially for Jubi^^
It was released yesterday, so the MV is the freshest fresh you can imagine. The song reminds me in few moments of quite a handful other songs, but the video is great. I mean the song too, because it's JJ Lin, and he doesn't disappoint. I had the impression the music background and the vocal line are running on two separate tracks, as if the vocal line wasn't in sync with the main music line. This dissonance is actually pretty interesting.

Video below.

Thursday, July 28, 2016

Throwback Thursday Ep 06

Today's theme is the 50's. This list is just a tiny fraction of what I would love to post, because the 50's gave us a galaxy of great songs. OK, make that two galaxies.
Video heavy^^

Wednesday, July 27, 2016

[Review] Killjoys Season 1

I am probably irrevocably damaged by my own background, so I see patterns everywhere, in every show I watch. Wanted to watch something light and fluffy, so I tried Killjoys, then I realized I was watching an Orwellian world. Or worlds.

Sunday, July 24, 2016

[Review] Ascension

I swear, Syfy channel is the most schizophrenic and bipolar one of them all. They either give us masterpieces (BSG, 12 Monkeys) or utter crap (The Magicians). And yet, it's the only channel I check religiously for new series and sample them all (sometimes use brain bleach after some of them). 
Ascension, a three-part little series went almost unnoticed last year. I missed it, fortunately my lovely friend Jubi recommended that, so here I am, writing a short info about this series.

Thursday, June 30, 2016

Throwback Thursday Ep 05

For some strange reason, yesterday I listened to the songs and musical pieces from the "roaring twenties". So there you go.

Thursday, June 16, 2016

Throwback Thursday Ep 04

This time - new arrangements of classics.
The reason? One day I listened to a marimba player and somehow fell in love with the sound of it, hence the theme for today's throwback - covers and rearrangements.

Sunday, June 12, 2016

The Play in Game of Thrones - Analysis

“All the world's a stage, and all the men and women merely players.”
― William Shakespeare, As You Like It

The Season 6 is still running and it would be unwise to guess the direction, especially that we have no books to turn to for help. However, up to today, the show had few great moments and more than a fair share of bore-fest inducing ones. I have never made it a secret that I only cared about the North, with Winterfell, Starks and The Wall (or north of The Wall, for that matter). This season has only strengthened my belief that I chose well for caring about the characters. Anything else is just bland. 
Except for the play that Arya was watching.
The play fascinated me from the first moment it appeared on the screen. I will try to explain why now.

Friday, May 13, 2016

Hong Kwangho - Update

I bet this gentleman wrote my name in his notebook, cause with each performance I die a little bit. I've wanted to post a video or two for months, but had no time or just other stuff accumulated and I couldn't manage to write one, short post. I'm a disgrace of a fan, I know. But... it's so great to see new channels popping up on YT rotating solely around this wonderful man (like recent star star). The hunt for his performances has become a lot easier than before. Also, Korean musicals are being released as albums with songs and that is also a thing to rejoice upon. He also released a live album with his songs from a concert. However the possibility to actually buy them is another story...

Thursday, May 12, 2016

Throwback Thursday Part 03

This time, something maybe less eclectic than the first installment, and R'n'B free.
This Thursday is made entirely of instrumental pieces. No vocals. Mostly soundtracks.

Thursday, May 05, 2016

Throwback Thursday Ep 02

This one is sponsored by the letter R like in "R'n'B". I hope there won't be much fuss about that.
Some throwback to the times when Drake and Jay-Z weren't considered R'n'B artists. Because, seriously?
More under the cut.

Thursday, April 28, 2016

Throwback Thursday Ep 01

Why not a new tradition (however weird that sounds)? I will try to go down the memory lane every Thursday and present a handful of MVs from the yore and yonder. 

Saturday, April 23, 2016

April Music

A handful of music gathered the last month.
Some of those are older though, I simply had no time to write a post.

Friday, April 22, 2016

"Fear The Walking Dead" - Resurrection of Nick

This will be somewhat a personal post. Those who know me, will probably know why.
There is a talk about the season 2 blurring the clear view of the apocalypse as it was seen through the eyes of three families and a shady mane name Strand. I find it somehow different. What's better than this setting? Not Los Angeles, a big city with places (where new zombies can roam, OK), but a boat? Surely, for fans of the gore elements, it won't work. What we get here is rather a slicing-and-dicing of relationships and families, already strained by the events. We get to see that stupid people are acting stupid regardless of the circumstances (read: Alicia in every-damn scene).
The first season of Fear The Walking Dead left the main characters (all of which deserve to perish, if you ask me) boarding the ship called Abigail. The second season picked upon the deck, and this way we got a very condensed soup of completely different characters, and worse, who felt estranged among themselves. There is no love lost among them. And I watched the first season not growing fond of any character; the first episode of the second season did not make anything different.

Sunday, April 17, 2016

Maxwell - Lake By The Ocean (single)

Rumor has it, this long-awaited album will be released this year. So, if nothing happens, 2016 will be a nice year, in terms of music releases. 
This little, cozy song proves that Maxwell still has what it takes, especially the lyrics. He was known because of it, after all.

Monday, April 11, 2016

[Review] Ash vs Evil Dead

From the same network that gave us Outlander, came this little gore-y wonder of the television series. This is not for the weak of hearts, this is not for people who feel nauseous at the mere sight of five liters of blood, severed heads and spilling intestines. Or hands growing eyes.

Saturday, April 02, 2016

Upcoming series

For few past months, I really had no time to commit to a series and I'm not confident the next months will be any different. However, since the US series adopted a new format (or at least some of them), that is shorter seasons, there is few that I'm anticipating.
And in case anyone wonders why I don't post anything on Korean series - well, I'm waiting for something to watch and not question my poor taste every goddamn 5 minutes. I really wanted to watch Descendants of the Sun, because I'm easily sold on military stuff, but not even uniforms could keep me interested. It would be so much better if they just concentrated on the army presence in this fictional country, without silly and preposterous romance shit. Or just changed the script, like 100%.
I have nothing against romance, no, but make it a part of the plot and not the whole plot itself. Kdramas lately remind me of the idea of building the city on the scorched desert. Instead of building wells and pipes first, they start to build a huge super-high-technology-smart mall with brand stores. This is their love story they organize the entire plot around. Who cares if the city they built so quickly will forever remain a barren, ghost city?

Upcoming/returning series I am waiting for are listed below. So far, I gathered only those that start in the first half of 2016.

Sunday, March 20, 2016

Tanya Chua 蔡健雅

Today, only one name of a singer-songwriter from Singapore. I probably mentioned her some time ago, but in case some of you missed it, this is a recommendation post. Her voice is very mature, her interpretations rich. She can sound as if annoyed, in a perpetual state of l'ennui. Or very upbeat. She experiments with her style, incorporating many motifs and styles to her music, be it the traces of traditional sounds, hypnotic trance, jazzy sounds or melonarrative. 
You will not regret listening to this artist, trust me.

Saturday, January 30, 2016

And Then There Were None

Since the miniseries was really mini (3 episodes), I decided to watch this. Especially that it was packed with known names, some of which I even like. 
The series is based on Agatha Christie's one of the most famous novels under the same title. The title itself was changed, as it was deemed to be offensive. Also, the poem and the island's name were also changed (to "ten Little Soldiers" and Soldier Island respectively).
I read people were wailing about the ending not being exactly as it was in the book, but sometimes what works for the literary world, doesn't translate well in other medium.
At least, they didn't run into the sunset together.

Monday, January 25, 2016

Tzuyu drama - a historical background

Pop-culture tries to stay oblivious to politics and history, which is hard, especially in such volatile region as East Asia, where every country is hating its neighbors, while maintaining diplomatic, economic and cultural relationship. Russia and Japan still do not have peace treaty signed, ending the WWII, North Korea and South Korea are in the same situation since 1953 having only signed the armistice, North Korea kidnapped Japanese citizens and some never returned, S. Korea and Japan fight over Dokdo/Takeshima, China and Japan fight over Diaoyu/Senkaku and Taiwan was erased from world maps in 1972.
That's why I love history. It helps to understand the dynamics in some regions or countries, it provides a background to what is happening now, in 21st century. But the tricky part with the history is this: it's always written by the victors, so one needs to be extra critical when it comes to the sources. It helps to read from various perspectives, even if it's a little tiring. In the latest spat over a tiny flag held by a tiny girl, no side is without a fault.

Saturday, January 23, 2016

Immortal Song 2 - Ryeowook

He did not win, but I'm more than happy to see him on IS2 again! The rumor has it - he wanted to be back. They sang the songs of Kim Gwangseok today.
The cut is below.

Friday, January 22, 2016

January music

Some of these songs are ballads, so be warned. But actually it's a mix of folk, indie, rock, and R'n'B.
Not much, only a handful.

Wednesday, January 20, 2016

Thirty Something - First Impressions

I know little about the insurance companies' policy, so I try my best to follow the plot here. I liked this drama from the first episode, mainly because of Xiu Jie Kai, who has a spot in my drama landscape.

Tuesday, January 19, 2016

Bromance ruminations

I think at this point I can honestly say I am ready to write some thoughts I've been having regarding this series. Twdramas are in constant pendulum motion from cute/sweet/cheesy/lovely to serious. This bipolar disorder is not something that is easy to accept and appreciate. Personally, I do not like all-serious episodes after episodes. Sure, I can appreciate, but I do not enjoy. There has to be light so we could see the shadows (oh, what a pathos, good one) and fluff is something to counterbalance our real life. I'd much rather see a silly series that makes me feel good, makes me believe world is not what it seems every damn day, makes me all giggly and happy inside. And one day, Bromance came my way as I intended to return to dramaland. And what a return it was! Two series were mentioned on Instagram and I decided to watch first episodes of both, Marry Me, Or Not? and Bromance.

Saturday, January 16, 2016

Riders: Catch Tomorrow - first impressions

 It is visible from the start it isn't Main 3 drama. The synopsis from Asianwiki doesn't sound too exciting, right? 
Ki-Joon (Kim Dong-Wook) has been working at a large company for one year, but he is now sick and tired of being overworked at the company. He quits his job and starts a rickshaw business with friends Yoon-Jae (Choi Min), Joon-Wook (Yoon Jong-Hoon) and a former national cyclist Tae-Ra (Choi Yeo-Jin). Meanwhile, So-Dam (Lee Chung-Ah) begins part-time work at Ki-Joon's office. Ki-Joon falls in love with her at first sight. 
The only common thing is one over-controlling Mother-From-Hell.
Started to watch this because my friend, tweeted about this. But be advised, if nuna romance ends badly here, I will end you!

Monday, January 11, 2016

[Book Review] Hyeonseo Lee - The Girl With Seven Names

Reading about North Korean people is like walking on a tiny path through quicksand at night. Surely, there's some thrill to it, but one wrong step and you may end up checking whether the sand has any bottom. The pitfalls of such books are easy to point out - we associate ourselves with oppressed people, those who desperately want to run or those who have no say and no opinion, being stripped of their human traits. Some weird people find other meanings - how wonderful Juche is, whole politics of songun and society "unpolluted by capitalism". It's best to deal with books about North Korea the same way we deal with every other documentary or autobiographical work.

Tuesday, January 05, 2016

Bromance introduction post

If you don't like the drama after this scene, there is no hope for you...

Two more from episode 6 down there:

Sunday, January 03, 2016

The Man in the High Castle

I might have returned to the sweet bosom of Asian drama, but that does not mean I won't be posting something about some other TV entertainment. Especially if it involves Rufus Sewell.
First - The Man in the High Castle.
And it has been renewed for season 2!

Friday, January 01, 2016

2015 Through Headphones

The year of 2015 was not the best in music. Surely, Jonghyeon and SHINee released an album and my review of the year could and probably should end here, but while going through some notes I made past year, I decided to make a monthly list with releases that are actually good. That is months worth mentioning
But then again, 2015 was not a good year in anything.
Without much ado, let's go!
Video heavy.