Saturday, June 15, 2019

Around the Tubes: June 15, 2019

I have gotten a plethora of cool press releases have been flooding my inbox recently that you may find interesting. This post will include blurbs on Veronica Mars, Selena Gomez, Supergirl, The Avett Brothers, Common, I’m With Her, Royal Teeth, Anna of the North, Noah Kahan, BENEE, Social House, The Habits, Wild Rose, Keb’ Mo’, Disgraceland, Notorious B.I.G., Lavell Crawford: New Look, Same Funny!, Desus & Mero, and Fertile Crescent.

- Last week at ATX Festival, Hulu announced that Veronica Mars fans will be able to re-live the first three seasons of the cult favorite on July 1st ahead of the Hulu Original returning for its fourth season on July 26th. Brush up on everyone's favorite teenage private eye below:

- Selena Gomez Reveals What Bill Murray Kept Whispering to Her at Cannes:

- Just in time for the fifth season premiere on The CW, catch up with one of TV’s favorite DC Super Heroes as Warner Bros. Home Entertainment brings you Supergirl: The Complete Fourth Season on Blu-ray and DVD on September 17, 2019. Fans can purchase the sets which, in addition to all 22 super-powered episodes from season four, also contain the DC Crossover featurette, the show’s 2018 Comic-Con panel, deleted scenes and a gag reel! All three DC Crossover: Elseworlds episodes will also be available only for fans who purchase the Blu-ray set. Supergirl: The Complete Fourth Season is priced to own at $39.99 SRP for the DVD ($51.99 in Canada) and $44.98 SRP for the Blu-ray ($52.99 in Canada), which includes a Digital Copy (Available in the U.S.). Supergirl: The Complete Fourth Season is also available to own on Digital via purchase from digital retailers.
In season four, Supergirl faces a bigger threat than she’s ever faced before – a new wave of anti-alien sentiment, spreading across National City that’s fomented by Agent Liberty. As Kara mentors a new reporter at CatCo, Nia Nal, and tries to use the power of the press to shine a light on the issues threatening to tear the city apart, Supergirl takes to the skies to battle the many villains who rise up in this era of divisiveness. But how does Supergirl battle a movement when she, herself an alien, represents one of the main things people are fearful of?

- In a letter penned by Seth Avett, Grammy Award®-nominated collective The Avett Brothers revealed today that they will be releasing their new album, Closer Than Together [American/Republic Records], on Friday, October 4, 2019. Read the mission statement for Closer Than Together here and below. The first single from the record “High Steppin’” was also released today along with its official music video. Listen to “High Steppin’” HERE and watch the official music video HERE.

- GRAMMY® Award-winning rapper Common unveils a new single and music video entitled “HER Love” featuring Daniel Caesar and special guest Dwele. Also included is an unreleased beat from J Dilla. Get it HERE! Boasting an unheard beat by longtime collaborator the late and great J Dilla, the soulful production underscores rhymes celebrating the culture from Jam Master Jay, all the way to Lil Uzi Vert, Nipsey Hussle, and Cardi B. It illuminates the genre’s powerful impact, as he claims, “You see a Malcolm X in a YG.” Regarding Hip-Hop, Common admits, “You gave me a voice in the world, it’s been hard to choose another girl.”

- Discogs has teamed up with I’m With Her to introduce an exclusive mini-documentary delivering a behind the scenes look at the vinyl manufacturing process — from mastering and lacquering to plating and pressing.

- Royal Teeth release their final single "Get A Load Of This One" before their long-awaited new full-length album Hard Luck comes out on June 28 via Round Hill Records. Keeping fans on the edge of their seats, the band announced the album release date today alongside the new track. "Get A Load Of This One" premiered by way of Northern Transmissions. The new single comes with a funky animated lyric video as well, which features a personal touch from the band - a peacock - because there's one that lives in their neighborhood and has become somewhat of a mascot for the group.

- Anna of the North today shares her magnificent new single ‘Thank Me Later’ via Paper Magazine. ‘Thank Me Later’ is yet another tantalizing addition to an enthralling new chapter of Anna of the North. A powerful follow-up to her defiantly raw singles ‘Leaning On Myself, and it’s equally powerful follow up ‘Used To Be’, ‘Thank Me Later’ is Anna of the North in full control. It's daydream pop brimming with the bold outlook of a woman taking charge in the modern age.

- Noah Kahan gifts his fans with a new song “Cynic” from his debut album Busyhead out this Friday, June 14th—listen and share HERE! Noah performed the track live for the very first time last night on Late Night with Seth Meyers—watch the performance HERE!

- Hailing from the suburbs of Auckland, 19-year-old indie pop artist BENEE returns with her latest single “Want Me Back” out today—listen HERE! Coming off the heels of her Gold-Certified hit “Soaked” and viral hit “Evil Spider,” the up and coming singer and songwriter also announces her upcoming debut EP FIRE ON MARZZ set for release on June 28th.

- Buzzing LA duo Social House—made up of Michael “Mikey” Foster and Charles “Scootie” Anderson—shares a brand new single “Haunt You” via School Boy Records/Republic Records—listen HERE! Social House also reveals their debut EP will be released on August 2nd—stay tuned for more!

- Los Angeles alternative/pop duo The Habits are celebrating the release of their debut self-titled EP, The Habits, out now. The band will be performing at Chain Reaction in Anaheim, CA on June 29th to commemorate the release. To further mark the the release of The Habits, the duo premiered their new music video for their 2nd single “Thirsty,” premiering now on Celebmix. “Thirsty” follows lead singer Wolf Bradley with a new sweetheart having an adventure on the world famous Santa Monica Pier. To catch the good vibes fans can view the video here.

- The Official Soundtrack for upcoming film Wild Rose, starring BAFTA Rising Star Award nominee Jessie Buckley, is now exclusively available at Barnes & Noble. Wild Rose is set for release in select theaters in New York and Los Angeles on Friday, June 21st. Watch the trailer for Wild Rose HERE!

- Today, Keb’ Mo’ releases Oklahoma, his first solo studio album since BLUESAmericana (2014). Building on the backbone of the Blues with subjects like depression and love, Mo’ also addresses current worldly issues like immigration and environmental degradation. Oklahoma is now available through all digital retailers and can be purchased here.

- The explosive rock and roll true crime podcast Disgraceland released a new episode on Slick Rick chronicling an attempted murder, kidnapping, and more. So far in season 3, host Jake Brennan has dissected Kurt Cobain & Courtney Love, Snoop Dogg, Johnny Cash, The Grateful Dead and more. Recently, the show peaked at #4 on the overall Apple Podcasts Top Podcasts chart ahead of The New York Times' The Daily and Serial following the launch of season 3.

- The Christopher Wallace Memorial Foundation, in partnership with the office of Majority Leader Laurie A. Cumbo, hosted the official event celebrating the street co-naming of Christopher “Notorious B.I.G.” Wallace Way, located at the intersection of St. James Place and Fulton Street in Brooklyn, where the late rapper was born and raised. The event commemorated the life and legacy of the legendary Notorious B.I.G., and his impact on music as one of the greatest and most influential rappers of all time. Hundreds of fans showed up to witness this historic moment, joining Biggie’s closest family and friends in celebration.

- Lavell Crawford is back to debut his new comedy special Lavell Crawford: New Look, Same Funny!, premiering Saturday, July 6 at 10:35 p.m. ET/PT on Showtime. Filmed at the Charline McCombs Empire Theatre in San Antonio, Crawford is funnier – and skinnier – than ever. After losing over 120 pounds, the comic offers his unique take on everything from being a fan of first-term President Obama and the recent government shutdown to his weight-loss journey and the best way to deal with cops in 2019.

- Showtime has released the latest episode of Desus & Mero for free online sampling, on streaming platforms and on demand. In the episode, Desus Nice and The Kid Mero continue their EGOT mission, setting their sights on scoring a Tony® Award with the help of Academy Award® nominee and Grammy®, Emmy® and Tony winner Lin-Manuel Miranda. The episode is available for free now on YouTube and Upcoming guests include Black Monday star Regina Hall, Anthony Anderson, Julian Edelman, Schoolboy Q and Ice Cube. The series airs Mondays and Thursdays at 11 p.m. ET/PT until its summer hiatus beginning August 5.

- Hulu announces straight to series order on Fertile Crescent (working title), an 8-episode drama series co-produced by Masha Productions, Spiro Films, Haut et Court TV, Arte France and Fremantle. Fertile Crescent dives into the depths of the Syrian civil war through the eyes of Antoine, a young French man, in search for his estranged, presumed to be dead sister. While unraveling the mystery, piece by piece, Antoine ends up joining forces with a unit of Kurdish female fighters, fierce women and ISIS’ biggest nightmare, and travels with them in ISIS occupied territory. Antoine’s journey crosses paths with adventurers and anarchists, spies and innocent victims, and provides a unique look on the tragic events in Syria, and the way they affect the entire world.

Friday, June 14, 2019

Previewing City on a Hill

There was a time in my life when I though the children were our future, just teach them well and let them lead the way. But whenever I spend any amount of time with the youth today I et increasingly depressed. The last interaction with a trio of teenagers, no of them had heard of the Beastie Boys, thought Eminem was old school, and have never played or even heard of Six Degrees of Kevin Bacon. For instance Aldis Hodge was Voodoo Tatum in Friday Night Lights with Connie Britton who was on Spin City with Michael J. Fox who was in Back to Future 2 with Elisabeth Shue who was in Hollow Man with, you guessed it, Kevin Bacon.

Although after next week those Hodge and Bacon will have no degrees of separation as they are both starring in City on a Hill. The new show is set in early nineties Boston (O.P.P. on the radio!) and follows a pompous FBI agent (Bacon) who has a great arrest record mostly thanks to illicit means and a new Assistant District Attorney who has to do everything by the books because all eyes are on him because the color of his skin. I sometime wonder if the proliferation of period pieces is solely the excuse for writers to be racist as they want under the guise of historical accuracy. Women are not portrayed much better, there is one actress who shows up in both of the first two episodes but only manages to spend less than ten percent of her time on screen actually clothed.

With the two lawmen, they need a crime to be solved. That comes way of Johnathan Tucker (whose one of his first acting gig was with Bacon in Sleepers) who despite runs a market, still finds time to knock over armored trucks. Although I am not entirely sure why someone with a full time job is risking everything for a $15,000 take. Especially considering what happens in a robbery that goes wrong that draws the attention of the Feds in the first episode. He does have three small children and a full time screw up little brother (a douchebag Bostonian who listens to Marky Mark in the early nineties is a bit on the nose) who wants in on the next score.

The thing about City on a Hill is the story as described in the press package sound much better that the clichéd period crime show that show up at the very least in the first couple episode. The press materials describe the early nineties setting as the height of violent crime and corruption in the city. Then the show starts at the dawn of the turnaround. I would like to watch that show as Bacon and Hodge route out corruption, instead it just comes off as a The Town retread with a couple more bushy mustaches (director of that movie, Ben Afleck is a producer on the show). Future seasons of City on a Hill may end up being compelling, but I feel like I have seen the first season way too many times at this point.

City on a Hill airs Sundays at 9:00 on Showtime.

Sunday, June 09, 2019

57 Channels and Only This Is On: June 9, 2019

Billions: Well they finally got Chuck Sr. But I have to guess the thing Connerty’s brother stole is going tome back to haunt him. I was a bit disappointed that the two teams breaking in for the document did not run into each other. Not like either could rat the other out because they were both breaking the law.

Fear the Walking Dead: Wait, Daniel is alive? Didn’t he die… twice? I remember him “dying” in a fire in like the second season. Then he showed up at the damn, but then I do not even remember how he “died” that time. But apparently he has run into Al sometime between the damn and right now, which has been a while in the show’s time because they did a pretty big time jump just to get Morgan on the show.
You can download Fear the Walking Dead on iTunes.

The Chi: Well the last time Cruz brought in Ronnie when he was drunk did not end well for him. Let us see if things end differently this time.

The Handmaid’s Tale: So what is going on with Commander Lawrence, he seemed like a stand-up guy who was helping Rory Gilmore and Offred’s baby escape. And now this season he seems much more antagonist. Last season he seemed like the architect of Gilead who regretted his creation but now comes off as a grump. And even one face value it seemed extremely cruel to make Offred Ofjoseph pick five from a group being sent to the Colonies, but in actuality it turned out a blessing because then she could pick five that could be most helpful for the resistance. So what exactly is his deal? I guess we have a whole season to figure that one out.
You can watch The The Handmaid’s Tale on Hulu.

Swamp Thing: Well that was a weird week. Not necessarily anything that happened on the show but right before the second episode aired, DC Universe announced they were canceling the show that led to a flood of possible reasons why. The one that caught traction was that a clerical error leading to North Carolina not paying for half the budget like originally agreed turned out to be based on false evidence, the 40 million tax credit promised turned out to be a couple million more than North Carolina set aside for all productions in the yearly budget. The more likely culprit is probably DC’s new corporate overlords who is currently working on their own streaming service and have not decided what to do with the niche outlet. I think it is very telling they have not made any programming announcements since renewing Titans last fall and it has been almost a year since they last greenlit a new program, Stargirl. So the question is Warner Bros. let DC Universe stand along with maybe the shows and movies eventually showing up on their still unnamed service? Will they take the successful shows and let DC Universe be just for comics? Or will they shutter it all together? The uncertainty really looks both DC Universe and whatever the Warner Brother streaming service called look really bad especially with Disney+ almost ready to launch.

As for the actual show, it continued from it strong premiere. I was most interested this week with the dead friend who just seemed like a way to draw a wedge between Abby and the big wig family as well as a way for her to get out of town to st up this homecoming. But clearly there is something else going on with the dead friend showing up twice. You can write off the first appearance as a dream sequence, but then she showed up again in bed with the mother. So she clearly has not crossed over yet and the mystic knows something she is not telling. This could be interesting.