Highlights from the last month, as chosen by the entertainment enthusiasts at Red Bee.
BEST NEW ARTIST: MONMOI
Our tip for your playlists this month is the up-and-coming indie electro artist Monmoi. Described by Sound Sniffer as 'London's newest lo-fi darling', Monmoi conjures up soothing tracks like ‘I'll Be Your Friend’ and ‘Better Off Dead’, which he admits have been spurred on by the monotony of lockdown. Pleasantly for us, his dreamy multi-layered creations, including some impressive self-harmonised vocals, offer the perfect soundtrack to keep you feeling calm in your WFH set up. Seek out his newest single Enemy, which was released on the 28th July on all platforms as a double track EP.
BEST DOCUMENTARY: UNITED SKATES
Have you ever heard of a New York Train, Kentucky Throw, Baltimore Snap, Atlanta Jackknife, Detroit Open House, Ohio Stride or a Chicago Underground? These are the eye-poppingly distinctive rollerblade dance styles that each city has made their own, creating a unique subculture intertwined with hip hop. Heartbreakingly, rollerblade rinks have been closing for years, mainly due to rent rises and disregard for community. This documentary shows what these rinks and skate culture mean to the locals and asks whether they will survive.
BEST FILM: HOW TO BUILD A GIRL
This can only be written and gushingly recommended with the pure enthusiasm of its protagonist Johanna Morrigan. The No.1 best-selling novel, How to Build a Girl, is now a film. And thank the beautifully messy, wish-we-were-that-witty mind of Caitlin Moran for that. To escape her perceived mundane, awkward teenage self, Johanna creates an alter ego, Dolly Wilde and together they go on a truly wild adventure of self-discovery. Every character is alive and loveable and unbelievably real. The cast is insane. There's literally too much incredible talent involved to be able to name them all and you feel like each and every one of them would have acted for free, simply to be part of something with this much vitality and heart. It’s available on Amazon Prime - and you absolutely don’t need to be a teenager to watch it, but you might wish you could be one again once you have - not least to have your very own ‘wall of gods’.
BEST TV DRAMA: THE SECRETS SHE KEEPS
Based on a true story, The Secrets She Keeps is a harrowing six-part psychological thriller following the lives of two women from very different walks of life, whose worlds collide as they fight to hide their secrets. While at times the BBC drama makes for uncomfortable viewing because of its dark twists, it has had us hooked, wanting to find out more after every cliff hanger. A truly gripping series and a sensational cast – available now on iPlayer.
BEST ALBUM: TAYLOR SWIFT - FOLKLORE
Taylor Swift’s recent surprise release, Folklore, was written and recorded entirely during lockdown. The album takes a completely different approach to her previous work, as the genre shifts from synth-pop to an alternative, folky sound, written without the pressure of stadium expectations. Using mostly guitar and piano, Swift creates an authentic and intimate atmosphere, as she tells engrossing stories intertwining fact and fiction. This collection of fantastical narratives give a vivid insight into her unique imagination during a time of crisis, with her talent for storytelling more poignant than ever.
Stay tuned for more next month