New psych-sci-fi collages from Dunstan Doodles

Posted in Art, Collage, Culture with tags , , , , , , , , , on September 14, 2018 by dc

Manchester based illustrator and artist, Dunstan Carter, exhibited a collection of portraits of psychedelic music icons earlier this summer. Combining illustration and collage techniques the mixed media portraits went down a storm.

Over the past few months Dunstan has been working on some new collages inspired by science fiction and psychedelia. The collages bring together images from Hollywood, ancient mythology, global politics and the weird and the wonderful, to create something truly unique. All of Dunstan‘s colleges are made using magazines and books he has stockpiled over the past few years and his current work takes inspiration from collage artists like Eugenia Loli and Martha Rosler, TV shows like Lost, The Leftovers and Twin Peaks and sci-fi art from the 50’s and 60’s.

Take a peek at two of his latest pieces, Ye Gods and The Scintillation below. More of Dunstan‘s work can be browsed through over on his site here.

Ye Gods - collage - Apr 18 - low res

The Scintillation - collage - May 18 - low res

Great new music… Big Red Machine

Posted in Music with tags , , , , , , , , , , on September 14, 2018 by dc


Most Justin Vernon fans will already know about his latest side project, Big Red Machine. But for those not yet aware of his latest venture, his latest incarnation sees him teaming up with The National‘s Aaron Dessner, alongside a host of other names dotted across the album, including This Is the Kit, Phoebe Bridgers and members of Arcade Fire and The Staves.

Echoes of both of Bon Iver‘s last two albums can be heard across Big Red Machine. Bon Iver‘s penchant for soaring harmonies and heartfelt digital soul appear most prominently on tracks like, Hymnostic and I Wont Run From It, which could both easily be off-cuts from 2011’s Bon Iver, Bon Iver.

The sonic experimentation of last year’s 22, A Million is even more prominent. Tracks like Lyla, Gratitude and Forest Green, all follow vaguely similar paths, pulling in shuffling, arrhythmic drum beats, gently swelling synths and mellow vocals. All three tracks clock in at just under six minutes each and whilst the album has a hazy, sprawling feel to it, it never seems overly indulgent – although, OMDB, with it’s gurgling Vernon vocals and shuffling nowhere rhythms, does test the patience a bit.

The album’s at it’s best when it’s find’s just the right balance between the fascinating sonic experimentation of 22, A Million, and the heartfelt melodicism of Bon Iver, Bon Iver. Fourth track, Air Stryp, is stunning. Some of the beats have an almost Aphex Twin-esque feel to them and Vernon‘s voice whispers and growls perfectly.

The new album also marks the start of a new project headed up by Vernon and Dessner called People. It’s based on musical collaboration and Dessner describes it as, “a large collective and community of artists that’s been collaborating for a long time — which is a way to sort of work together and publish music that’s sort of outside of the traditional marketing bottleneck. Big Red Machine is really a community effort: I guess it involves almost 30 musicians. It does come out of our friendship, but it’s really something that is deeply collaborative.”

Big Red Machine‘s eponymous debut album is available to buy and stream now.

Great new music… Dead Captain

Posted in Music with tags , , , , , , , , , , on September 10, 2018 by dc

Tameside’s psych-rock beatniks, Dead Captain are currently in the studio rustling up some new tunes that’ll feature on their debut album next year.

Their first eponymous EP, and singles, Who Knows, The Fear and Vermillion take in musical influences like Grandaddy, Angelo Badalamenti, Elliot Smith and Super Furry Animals, and mess around with them to create their own distinctive slacker rock sound.

In the last twelve months the duo have released three videos. Check all three videos out below (and follow Dead Captain on Twitter here):

Great new music… West On Colfax

Posted in Music, Uncategorized with tags , , , , , , , , , on July 27, 2018 by dc

West on Colfax are a new five piece band from Lancashire. They were formed at the start of this year and debut single, The Line, has a classic Americana feel to it that evokes the music of Country icons like Glenn Campbell and Gram Parsons as well as tipping a hat to vaguely recent bands like Drive By TruckersWilco and Real Estate.

Singer Alan Hay’s voice has real warmth and character to it, and Scott Carey‘s (Paris Angels) lyrics conjur up an age old tale of love and longing underpinned with some lovely country rock with touches of sublime pedal steel. I’m looking forward to hearing more.

Check out the video for, The Line below:

Five films you’ll need to see in 2019

Posted in Culture, Film, Movies with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , on July 17, 2018 by dc

2018 is has been a pretty good year for films so far. From the blockbuster triumphs of Black Panther, Ready Player One and Incredibles 2, through to Wes Anderson‘s Isle Of Dogs and Lynne Ramsay‘s haunting, You Were Never Really Here, there’s been plenty of high and low budget “hits”. There have been nerve shredding new horror films like, A Quiet Place and Hereditary; funny films, both high and low brow, in the shape of The Death Of Stalin and Game Night, and fascinating sci-films like Annihilation and Mute.

As we shuffle past 2018’s half way mark a lot of studios are already teasing us with stuff to look forward to next year. A few movies have performed quite badly in the box office this year like the Solo film, Disney’s A Wrinkle In Time, Pacific Rim: Uprising, the Tomb Raider and Death Wish reboots, and Aardman Animation’s, Early Man, so there’ll be plenty of Hollywood execs hoping the first half of 2019 has a few less flops.

So, what’s in store? Well, it goes without saying that the folk behind the big, BIG blockbusters, Star Wars: Episode IX, Wonder Woman 1984, Spider-Man: Far from Home, Ang Lee‘s Gemini Man, and the new Marvel films, Gambit and Captain Marvel, will be hoping the recent blockbuster wobbles don’t continue. Those massive fantasy movies aside, here’s Slacker Shack‘s list of five big films due for release next year that are (hopefully!) worth getting really giddy about:

Following on from the huge success of, Get Out, Jordan Peele’s next film, Us, is being billed as a, “social horror-thriller“. It’s set to star, Lupita Nyong’o, Winston Duke and Elisabeth Moss. Very little is known about the film but, like Get Out, it’ll be written by Peele.

The Goldfinch
A film adaptation of Donna Tartt’s Pulitzer Prize winning, best-selling novel, The Goldfinch is due for release early next year. Directed by John Crowley (who directed 2015’s Brooklyn) the plot sees a New York boy named Theo (played by Baby Driver‘s Ansel Elgort) taken in by a wealthy Upper East Side family after his mother is killed in a bombing at the Metropolitan Museum of Art. From adolescence into early manhood he careers through a series of criminal misadventures that find him living in Las Vegas with his loser father and, later, involved in art forgeries. The film’s impressive cast includes, Nicole Kidman, Jeffrey Wright, Luke Wilson, Sarah Paulson and Stranger Things’ Finn Wolfhard.

Once Upon A Time In Hollywood
Quentin Tarantino‘s “ninth” film has already raised a bit of controversy (well over a year ahead of it’s release) due to it’s subject matter. Early reports said the script focused on the infamous murder of actress Sharon Tate by Charles Manson‘s followers, but Tarantino has stated that the murders are only an element of the film and not it’s main focus. In a statement earlier in the year he described the film as, “a story that takes place in Los Angeles in 1969, at the height of hippy Hollywood. The two lead characters are Rick Dalton (Leonardo DiCaprio), former star of a Western TV series, and his longtime stunt double Cliff Booth (Brad Pitt). Both are struggling to make it in a Hollywood they don’t recognize anymore. But Rick has a very famous next-door neighbor … Sharon Tate.” Big name stars rumoured to be starring alongside Pitt and DiCaprio include, Margot Robbie (as Sharon Tate), Dakota Fanning, Al Pacino, Kurt Russell, Burt Reynolds, Damian Lewis and Tim Roth.


The New Mutants
In amongst at least half a dozen superhero blockbusters next year comes another Marvel comics adaptation, The New Mutants. The film’s cast includes, Game Of Thrones star, Maisie Williams, Antonio Banderas, Strangers ThingsCharlie Heaton, Anya Taylor-Joy (from The Witch) and Alice Braga. The is the first in a trilogy of mutant horror films, and is intended to be the thirteenth installment in the X-Men film series. And whilst it’s clear that cinemas and tv viewer’s alike are suffering from a bit of superhero fatigue, I’m hoping this one will be a hit due to rumours the script is in part based on the Demon Bear graphic novel, which is a favourite of mine as it features the eternally brilliant art of Bill Sienkiewicz. Check out the teaser trailer below:

M. Night Shyamalan may be responsible for a handful of cinematic turkeys (see, Lady In The Water, The Last Airbender and After Earth), but the idea of a film that comes as a sequel to two of his better films, Unbreakable and Split, seems like a winner. The plot sees Unbreakable‘s security guard, David Dunn (Bruce Willis) using his supernatural abilities to track down Split’s Kevin Wendell Crumb (James McAvoy), a disturbed man with 24 personalities. How Samuel L. Jackson‘s, Elijah Price character will feature is a mystery but the concept sounds interesting.

New Dead Captain tune and video

Posted in Music with tags , , , , , , , on July 1, 2018 by dc

Tameside duo, Dead Captain have just released the video for their new tune, Vermillion, and it’s a strange little treat.

The accompanying NSFW video features a magical tea towel, unicorns, smokey country lanes and ‘blink-and-you’ll-miss-them’ cameos from 80’s icons, Max Headroom and Carol Vorderman – check it out below:

According to the single blurb, Dead Captain’s debut album will be out “sometime between the collapse of Brexit and the impeachment of Trump“. So, that’s either, never or sometime next year then!

Great new music… Cold Water Swimmers

Posted in Music with tags , , , , , , , , , on June 20, 2018 by dc


Cold Water Swimmers are a brand new, fresh out the oven band from Manchester, England. They were formed just a few months back by Chris Bridgett (Dub Sex, Rude Club, The G-O-D) and I was lucky enough to see them perform last month at an intimate gig in the city’s Northern Quarter. They blew me away.

Raw and unflinching, their sound combines elements of post-punk and garage rock to create something really immediate and moving. They only have a handful of songs currently and there’s only a snatch of debut single, She’s Falling Apart available to listen to, but releases are in the pipeline and imminent. Make a note and get onboard. You can follow CWS on Twitter here and stay up to date. Here’s a snippet of, She’s Falling Apart