I readily admit to having seen very little of what the cinematic world has to offer lately but this small British gem set on a London council estate has an excellent energy mostly driven by lead actress and film debutant Katie Jarvis and current critical favourite Michael Fassbender. Whilst the film does occasionally lose it's essence and stray close to the borders of cliche, strong characters and performances ensure a memorable experience. Director Andrea Arnold is hopefully part of a British film revival along with Steve McQueen (Hunger) and the ever reliable Mike Leigh and Shane Meadows. Leigh is currently receiving mostly high praise for his latest work, Another Year, currently playing in the Palme d'Or field at Cannes. We should all take that cinematic Mecca to Cannes one day, right?!
Whilst I can't even predict Fish Tank will stay afloat in my end of year top ten, this dreamy album is an instant modern classic. The third album from the Baltimore duo is a distinctive progression from their previous two - easier to digest, yes but the clarity of writing, splendid production and a new level of confidence ensures a richly textured and deeply rewarding listen. Musically, this year is developing nicely - excellent new albums from Swedish shoegazers, The Radio Dept., American kings, The National and experimental Canadian duo Crystal Castles are all currently pleasing my ears - not at the same time, that would be a scary mashup.
And yours? Recommendations are always handy.