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Scene’s Selections: a summertime forecast

, , and | Tuesday, May 1, 2018

Cristina Interiano | The Observer

In mere days, you’ll crawl out of your hole, shower, wash your clothes and open your eyes wide for the first time in months. It burns! The sun! Pain! Society! All that jazz. Jazz! Then, you’ll realize. It’s summer! Oh no. It’s summer. Shhh. There there. Tuck away your worries. You don’t have to spend your summer outside — doing sports and things. Scene’s brought you a menu of summertime comfort food that we couldn’t be more excited about. Food that can accompany you during three-month couch-bound meditation.


By Ryan Israel, Scene Writer

BROCKHAMPTON, the self-proclaimed “America’s Favorite Boy Band,” made waves throughout 2017 and it’s ready to make more in 2018. Led by frontman Kevin Abstract, the alternative hip-hop group released three full-length albums in 2017. The albums, all released within six months, made up the SATURATION Trilogy and totaled a whopping 48 songs. The trilogy, combined with the group’s message of positivity and love, generated a loyal following of teenagers and young adults.

Since the final installment in the SATURATION trilogy, BROCKHAMPTON has not been quiet. The collective toured the country, performed at Coachella and made friends with celebrities like Jamie Foxx, Ansel Elgort and Jaden Smith. Most notably, BROCKHAMPTON lost its independent status when they inked their first record deal with RCA Records and announced its upcoming album “PUPPY” with a video starring Jaden Smith.

“PUPPY” will be an important milestone for BROCKHAMPTON. The album is BROCKHAMPTON’s chance to establish itself as a serious player both in the music industry and the alternative hip-hop scene. The group is well aware of the pressure and has taken six months to perfect the “PUPPY,” which far exceeds above average time taken to produce its previous three albums. Needless to say, more than a few eyes will be on BROCKHAMPTON when it releases “PUPPY” sometime this summer.

“Love Is Dead” — CHVRCHES

By Hanna Kennedy, Scene Writer

CHVRCHES, the Glasgow synthpop trio, has confirmed May 25 as the release date for its third full-length album. Entitled “Love Is Dead,” this project will be the group’s first to bring in an outside producer. Greg Kurstin, whose previous credits include Adele, Sia and Ellie Goulding, co-produced nine of the album’s 13 songs. He brings with him a new accessibility to the group’s signature punk-hearted pop sound.

Four singles, “Get Out,” “My Enemy,” “Never Say Die” and “Miracle,” have been released in anticipation of the album. The tracks express the frustration with the world and a crisis of faith embedded in the effort’s title. Unwilling to give up, frontwoman Lauren Mayberry sings on “Miracle,” “And I need you to know, I’m not askin’ for a miracle / But if love is enough, could you let it show?” There’s a hope at the core of “Love Is Dead.” CHVRCHES is just trying to reconcile that hope with what it sees around it.

On “My Enemy,” the second single released, the trio collaborates with Matt Berninger of The National. A dream come true for Mayberry, who, as a recent college graduate and cafe employee, would turn on The National to close up. His vocals lend a duality of perspectives when contrasted with Mayberry’s contribution on the chorus. Together, they create a tense yet oddly buoyant sound.

With its late May release date, be ready to listen to CHVRCHES’ “Love Is Dead” all summer long.

“Lush” — Snail Mail

By Mike Donovan, Associate Scene Editor

June’s arrival will bring with it, not ecstasy, but a syrupy cocktail of unheeded humidity and dissatisfaction. The collegiate student’s dutiful masochism — meme browsing, naps, futon sitting, more naps, intensely fleeting focus and extensive weekend bohemianism — gently grasps our trembling (dehydrated) hands and structures our lives to (I borrow from Stuart Murdoch) “the chaos of trouble.”

June draws us into the cathartic comforts of Snail Mail frontwoman Lindsey Jordan’s pan-seared croon — “I’m so tired of moving on / Spending every weekend so far gone / Heatwave, nothing to do / Woke up in my clothes having dreamt of you.”

Be wary. Jordan’s voice — soon to be heard on, “Lush,” Snail Mail’s debut LP, out June 8 on Matador — tumbles toward to the cusp of its capacity, running desperately overtop her virtuosic lead constructions and impeccably calculated chord structures. The sound will likely invade your betters senses. You will mount your Deloitte internship desk, and the desk itself becomes a pedestal from which you will proselytize to your fellow accounting major about toxic, corporate America’s relentless war on love.

You may try to blame it on the heatwave or pass it off as a minor breakdown, but inside, you’ll know. You’ve heard Snail Mail, and now, like Jordan, you want to be heard. Unfortunately, you won’t have her vocal and guitar chops nor songwriting prowess to aid you in your journey. Yet come June 8, you can search for her help (or assurance) in the vibrant colors and layers of “Lush.”

“Ocean’s 8” 

By Nora McGreevy, Scene Editor

In 2017, Rihanna stole the Met Gala for her “architectural wonder” of a dress — a cacophonic, flowery, glorious living sculpture of bright red and pink cut-outs that defied all logic.

On June 8, 2018, Rihanna — along with a cohort of trained thieves, forgers and criminal masterminds — will steal the Met Gala again, this time with the help of some movie magic. The star-studded, primarily female cast of “Ocean’s 8” includes Rihanna, who plays a tech-savvy computer genius, rapper Awkwafina, along with actors Sandra Bullock, Cate Blanchett, Anne Hathaway, Mindy Kaling, Sarah Paulson and Helena Bonham Carter. In the film, the group of 8 attempt to carry out a daring theft at the Met Gala, with all of the spunk and excitement of your favorite heist thriller.

The Met Gala, a highly publicized event held at the Metropolitan Museum of Art in New York, is known for its extraordinary opulence — in many ways, it is to the fashion world what the Bellagio is to Vegas nightlife. In keeping with its source material, “Ocean’s 8” promises glitz, fast-paced action, witty dialogue, celebrity cameos and high fashion. As Mindy Kaling queries in the trailer: “Can’t we just go to this? Do we have to steal stuff?”

In the tradition of the heretofore male-dominated “Ocean’s” franchise, “Ocean’s 8” promises to provide a thrilling, high-risk heist that is glamorous yet unique in its own right. As always with all-female remakes, the premise of “Ocean’s 8” has been met with some controversy, the large majority of which comes from male writers online. The actors in the film have been quick and loud with a response: that a movie can be well-executed and fun and also right an industry-wide gender imbalance in the same fell stroke.

However, the trailer does leave me with a few questions: will the Ocean’s 8 crew subvert gender roles, not merely supplant them? Does this film preach an inclusionary feminism, or does it stop short of intersectionality? Do Awkwafina’s hilarious and off-the-wall raps get a space on the soundtrack? Come June 8, with this new and important addition to the “Ocean’s” canon, we’ll have some answers.

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About Mike Donovan

Mike enjoys good words.

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About Nora McGreevy

Scene Editor.

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About Hanna Kennedy

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About Ryan Israel

Ryan is the Former Scene Editor (2020-2021). He is currently washed up. Follow Ryan on Twitter @ryizzy.

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