A Beer, A Band, A Bandit

Three items I’m enjoying this week:

The Beer: Thornbridge Raven 6.6% £2.10/half

After a trial shift at the Euston Tap last night, I was treated to a half-pint of this god-sent IPA. With the color of a stout, it packs a hoppy-malty punch that’s so surprisingly refreshing a camel would recommend it to you. Might be the Japanese hops these malt-jobs imported, might just be the quality of the IPAs in the Isles, but this was definitely a highlight of my beer-drinking career.

The Band: Hot Karate

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If you ever even came close to head-banging and enjoying a thrilling space-shuttle launch of a guitar riff, lend an ear to Hot Karate – they layer their music so thick it’s a Charlie Brown Christmas on the frozen lakes of hell, but more pleasant. For a first listen, check out the earth-shattering opener “Dance of Apology,” the chilled-out instrumental “Midnight Merkin,” and the awesomely titled “Peruvian Loveslave.”

Link for free download: Hot Karate

The Bandit: Dead Man (dir. Jim Jarmusch)

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Dead Man Trailer

Miss the days when Johnny Depp was an edgy weirdo? Go back to this beautifully shot, black-and-white 1995 Jim Jarmusch flick. William Blake, an accountant from Cleveland, finds his face on a WANTED poster after winning an accidental shoot-out. As he travels around the Wild West with Nobody (Gary Farmer) as his Native American guide, he starts to actually live up to his name as a mystic poet and a cold-blooded killer. The soundtrack features blistering, lonely guitar solos and organ vamps by none other than Neil Young, and the caemos include Iggy Pop, Crispin Glover, John Hurt, and Alfred Molina among others. One word of warning: have patience and enjoy the sometimes lengthy shots of landscape.

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