Category Archives: reviews

The Rolling Stones

Review: Blue & Lonesome

Once upon a time thought The Rolling Stones were one of the great rock’n’roll bands – who also occasionally sang the blues. In between those early years and now there was not a lot of great music from the Stones – loads of concerts and a mix of music – some good and some ok. Would they ever make great music again?

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Rebecca Huntley Still Lucky

Book Review

Still Lucky, Rebecca Huntley, 2017. This is a good book. The message is clear – Australians are far more optimistic than we have been led to believe by our governments and the media. This researcher has done the research, travelled the country, talked to loads of people over many years. If you are interested in her reports on her research and comments – this book will give you all that and more.

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Helen Garner

Review: Everywhere I Look, Helen Garner

Here’s a good read. Being a selection of essays and diary notes based on many events and sometimes those quite happenings that one observes.

I have not read any Helen Garner’s work but have a reasonable awareness of the topics she writes on. Other reviewers have related this work to previous writings – for me I had to take it all on face value.

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Being Turnbulled

9781760294885The Curious Story of Malcolm Turnbull, the Incredible Shrinking Man in the Top Hat

I wrote briefly about this earlier – and as I said before – it’s a book for anyone puzzled by the current loser who is Prime Minister.

click here for more on the book and here’s an article by the author about his dilemma–click here.

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Billy Bragg & Joe Henry

Shine A Light – Field Recordings From The Great American Railroad. 2016 Billy Bragg & Joe Henry

billy-bragg-joe-henryHere’s a fun story about two musicians and how they made this album. They hopped on the train and then jumped off at stops along the way to record a song – while making sure they were back on board as the train left. And yes – the music is good stuff. Definitely worth a listen if you are a follower of Billy Bragg and Joe Henry. Click here for more on the album.

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Being Turnbulled

9781760294885The Curious Story of Malcolm Turnbull, the Incredible Shrinking Man in the Top Hat

Here’s a book for anyone puzzled by the current loser who is Prime Minister. I am still reading it… click here or on the image. and here’s an article by the author about his dilemma–click here.   Review to follow…..


shetland1-2Review TV program on DVD: Shetland

There are several good crime dramas coming out of the UK that have a common theme – being a police unit in a region of the UK well away from metropolitan areas. Shetland is one these – the stories being located on the islands off the north east of Scotland. It is a good series – and for those who like their frequent dose of crime/ police/ dramas – this series is definitely recommended.

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Notes on the Death of Culture

New Book: Mario Vargas Llosa, Notes on the Death of Culture

I suspect that many people would agree that the joys and subtleties of culture is under threat by mass media technologies and the expectations of the immediate. The demise of culture is addressed in a new book “Notes on the Death of Culture”. This is not a joyous read as it is more about being in a state of despair about so many things about us in western society.

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Review: Vera on DVD

914ClcuQ2QL._SL1500_This is a series for any crime drama fans. The stories are based in North East England, complete with accents and marvellous countryside. While the characters are important to the story lines, they do not dominate and so the crime story remains at the centre of attention throughout.

The  main character, Chief Inspector Vera Stanhope, is portrayed successfully and is totally enjoyable.

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Spiral (Engrenages)

Review – Spiral on DVD

SpiralMontageThis is a wonderful French TV series – that has the title Spiral which is not an accurate translation of the French title – Engrenages. The story lines are more about how they are meshed together rather than being in any spiral.

The writing is great and the characters are all interesting and well-played by the actors. This series is totally recommended.

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A most disturbing photo

mosman-Photo0165web2I spotted this work of art in a visual arts print making exhibition at the Mosman City Gallery (Sydney). (Review to follow in a couple of days)

Given the current leadership of the country and its attitudes to segments of society as well as its dangerous statements about migrants – this image is way too disturbing. It reflects so accurately how so many people feel about this government and the current Prime Minister.


Olive Kitteridge

Review – TV Series
Olive Kitteridge – on DVD


In amongst the many well produced and well scripted TV series now on the market, comes something that does not quite fit in with the current trends. This is not a crime or police or suspense drama. So if that is what you are looking for, then be prepared to be disappointed. Or maybe surprised! This three-part series is about is one person and how she relates, or not, to those around her. In the usual definition of a plot, not a lot happens. In the sense of people’s lives, a hell of a lot happens.

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William Elliott Whitmore

Music Review

William Elliott Whitmore, Radium Health 2015

wewlpThis album takes a slightly different direction to the two albums I had previously reviewed – click here. And while I am enjoying listening to this album, I still prefer the other two.

On this 2015 album William Elliott Whitmore has moved slightly away from hos more folk/ americana sitting on the porch style – to having some fun with a small band with various moods and styles, some being a little more rock & roll than previous.

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