Jason Hawk Harris on Finding Light and Love in the Darkness

From unbridled rockers to wounded laments, the 11 songs that make up Jason Hawk Harris’s debut record contain many demons. The suffocating grief that followed his mother’s death, the substances he abused to numb the pain, the doubts that shook his faith… Harris is not afraid to admit that, at times, those demons have kicked his ass. But when Harris and his band raise the roof, like on the runaway train of ‘I’m Afraid’, it feels like he’s fighting back… and winning.

Josh Ritter on Speaking Out and Dressing with Intent

The first time I met Josh Ritter, he was a young man bashfully accepting the effusive praise of a room full of Irish music fans. Forty minutes earlier, few people in that room had even heard his name, but every single one left as a devoted fan, copies of his two self-released albums tucked in their pockets. With every return visit, the venues got bigger, the crowds got louder and Ritter transformed from a man who blushed at each round of applause into a consummate entertainer. By the time his th

Murder By Death’s Adam Turla on Space Operas and Haunted Hotels

What’s in a name? Cannibal Corpse, Cradle of Filth, Morbid Angel… you don’t need to be a genius to have a guess at what they’re going to sound like. Some might assume a band that would call itself Murder By Death would fit in the same bracket, but the Indiana quintet couldn’t sound more different to the punishing assault of death metal. In fact, for a band that can prove impossible to define, it’s something of a masterstroke to choose a name that completely wrongfoots listeners from the off. You

Robin Wilson's new cheerful experience

No decade feels special when you’re in it. That’s especially true of the 90s, a decade that felt dated, uncool and unfashionable even when we were knee-deep in undercuts, flannel and Matchbox 20. For those of us who were there first time around, it’s inconceivable that when the fashion and cultural carousel came back around to 1990, it didn’t just carry on to the 00s. But the 90s are back with a bang, bringing with them fashion that you’d tried to forget and a whole host of bands you once though

Bill Heck on the Tender, Dusty Romance at the Heart of Buster Scruggs

Picture a cowboy. Some of you might see John Wayne, walking across a saloon like his legs are made of tin. Some of you might have conjured up Clint Eastwood, the tail end of a smoke clinging on to the corner of his lip, a dirty poncho draped around his shoulders. Or the more romantically inclined might see a ruggedly handsome young man in denim and boots, the kind of man who’s seen hardship and cruelty, but somehow kept it at bay. Bill Heck fits firmly into that latter category. In ‘The Gal Who

The Rise and Fall and Rise of Fantastic Negrito

Most of us have one story to tell. Xavier Dphrepaulezz has several, any one of which would be more than enough for the rest of us. Whatever he’s been through (crime, near-stardom, near-death), the word that keeps coming back is “survivor”. One of 15 children of a Somali-Caribbean immigrant, Dphrepaulezz has risen and fallen enough times to cause serious motion sickness. His brush with fame came in the 90s, signed as Xavier to Interscope records until a car crash broke both his arms and legs…

Sean Bridgers on Get Shorty and the Return of Deadwood

While he has his share of fans in and out of the industry, Sean Bridgers is a name that might not immediately ring bells with the casual film and TV fan. His face is a different matter. If you’ve watched anything that’s gritty, funny and violent over the last decade, chances are he’s been in there somewhere. Deadwood? That’s him as the astoundingly simple Johnny Burns. Rectify? That’s him lurking around the fringes as the sinister Trey Willis. His roles in Justified and Midnight Special were sma

Creating a Legend with Captain Fawcett Founder Richie Finney

Richie Finney isn’t Captain Fawcett. He’s at great pains to stress that. He’s the captain’s righthand man. And if you attend any convention, function, talk or festival and see the name Captain Fawcett, it’s unlikely you’ll meet the captain himself, but you’re sure to find Finney there, with his magnificently sculpted moustache and brown overall coat. Whatever the intrepid captain’s involvement in the company, it seems to be Finney who carries the bulk of the load.

Breaking Apart Stereotypes with Actor Filipe Valle Costa

Everyone’s heard the cliché of the small-town kid with big time dreams, turning up in LA determined to become an actor. That clichéd kid might have set out for Hollywood from somewhere in the Midwest, but it’s pretty rare for a youngster to begin their journey to stardom by travelling from Lisbon to Lamoni, Iowa. There’s no question that Filipe Valle Costa has taken the long way around, dragging his dreams of being a tennis star and then an actor all the way across the Atlantic to the tiny Iowan

Filmmaker Henri Fitzmaurice on the Long Shadow of the Vietnam War

Often, when we speak to filmmakers, it’s with the benefit of hindsight. They can reflect on a process that either went to plan or didn’t and their experiences are colored by the final film and the reaction to it. It’s fascinating then, to speak to a filmmaker who is at the very beginning in every way possible. Twenty-year-old Henri Fitzmaurice, a student at Carnegie Mellon in Pittsburgh, is using his college years in a way that outstrips most of his peers. No interning at tech start-ups or drink