FAULT Reviews: Detroit rapper Danny Brown live at the Met (Pawtucket, RI)

When you attend a Danny Brown concert, expect to quickly befriend your neighbor. Or at least become accustomed to the scent of joints and Newports while you dance. Having followed the rapper’s career from afar, I didn’t exactly know what to expect. Would we encounter a charismatic wordsmith on the prowl or a vulnerable introvert with the habit of posting confessional snippets on Twitter? I suppose that I shouldn’t have underestimated Brown’s ability to navigate the balance of comedic spectacle and natural skill.

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Photo: Josh Wehle

Following a set from show-openers Tanboys, the polarizing underdog of rap was clearly the king of the court at The Met in Pawtucket, Rhode Island. From the second that he hit the stage, Brown, sporting recently dyed hair the color of a St. Patrick’s Day shamrock, controlled the eager masses with his tightly-controlled rhythm and signature voice, spitting out rhymes like a man who knew that he had nothing to lose. After all, Brown’s fans embrace his “weirdness” (he once stated that 50 Cent didn’t want to sign him to a label due to his affinity for skinny jeans), championing the rapper’s unflinching honesty about growing up in Detroit, in addition to his high-pitched wordplay. Surrounded by the energy of the Bruiser Brigade, Brown performed songs from 2011’s XXX and his current album Old. Highlights from Old included: ‘Side A (Old)’, ’25 Bucks’, ‘Handstand’, and ’Smokin and Drinkin’. The crowd, which seemed to have a median age of twenty-two, seemed to be enraptured. The rapper’s mere presence was enough to incite mania. Unlike a Drake or even hometown rival Big Sean, Brown doesn’t need the gaudy distractions of bottle-popping club thumpers or odes to designer-duds. His power lies in his conviction, the dedication to exposing the raw and ugly truths of life. Girls decked out in skate shoes and Obey snapbacks partied next to hip-hop heads in fresh sneakers and chunky chains. Bouncing with boundless showmanship, Brown tore through song after song. He moved about the stage with ease, ending every other song with the flash of his tongue. Combined with the venue setup and the crowd demographic, I couldn’t help but feel transported back to the days of college house parties, where nearly everyone swayed to the bass while clutching a red cup.

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Brown has been adamant about sticking to the truth of his craft, rather than clamoring for radio-friendly hits. In the past, he’s said: “I think now with me and my music, it’s just something that I want to leave behind when I die.” Considering the work that Brown has already released, I doubt that his work will be forgotten. At the core of his music, Brown is a story-teller, one who captures the humanity of his community, no matter how bleak or grim (it’s no surprise that he cites Nas as one of his early influences). As long as Brown continues to have something to say, count me among the many hip-hop aficionados that will continue to listen.

 

Words: Vanessa Willoughby

FAULT Focus: International Designer Sophie Zinga

 

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What was your primary inspiration when you started the Sophie Zinga label?

When I first launched the line my primary inspiration came from my country, Senegal. I remember sourcing fabrics and creating intricate designs with Senegalese hand woven fabrics.

How would you describe the brand in 3 words?

Feminine. Classic. Minimal.

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Congratulations on your first show at Paris Fashion Week! You displayed your AW’14-15 collection – what/who were the main influences behind that (if any)?

Thank you. Even though New York is my base and it’s an untraditional approach, I think my international fan base appreciated it. I think it was important to show in Paris, which is the original fashion capital of the world.

Do you have a favourite piece from the collection?

Yes my favourite piece is the gold metallic lame dress. It is glamorous silk metallic lame but at the same time keeps Sophie Zinga’s minimal quality and focus on lavish fabrics and clean lines.

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You have such a cosmopolitan background – from Dakar (Senegal) to New York via Paris and Lagos – how do these disparate influences manifest themselves in your designs?

It comes naturally. Sophie Zinga is named after myself so it reflects parts of personality, my reality and myself, which translates into my designs.

Can you tell us about some of the unique features of the label?

The label is 100% made in Senegal (West Africa).

We love Animals. No real fur policy.

We only use silks, brocades or hand woven fabrics.

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Is there a particular process you follow when designing?

I travel a lot. My parents travel a lot so I get a lot of my inspiration from traveling or from my parents’ trips. My mother is a great storyteller so she has an amazing way of giving people details about her trips that makes you feel like you were there. Other than that, it starts with sketches in my red little to-go red book I keep with me at all times. Picking out fabrics is my favourite part! I sometimes source fabrics depending on how I’m feeling.

You describe the label as “socially conscious”. Could you expand on that?

When I first thought about creating the label, giving back and creating jobs in West Africa was my biggest motivation. I have a background in development and economics and I’ve extensively volunteered and worked in development issues regarding Africa so naturally I always wanted to incorporate that in the label’s DNA. I made the conscious move of keeping the manufacturing done in 100% in West Africa. I am currently working with different multinational entities to improve to livelihoods women and girls and to give workers from disadvantaged communities the opportunities to have a dignified job in fashion, which in return benefits the whole community.

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Who would be your dream client to design for/work with?

Lupita Nyongo. She perfectly nails the essence of style in an effortless way, without trying too hard. Angelina Jolie would be an amazing client as well. She can do no wrong on the red carpet.

What are you currently working on?

I am currently working on my Spring/Summer 15 collection, which is going to be the most extensive collection yet to date. Excitement is an understatement!

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What are your plans to expand the line?

I would love to expand the line and ultimately create a diffusion line 5 years down the road. In 2016 I plan on developing accessories.

What is your FAULT?

Procrastinating. LOL.

 

Images: Ibra Ake; Mambu Bayoh

Mac Miller & Dylan Reynolds: Behind the Scenes video from our exclusive FAULT Issue 17 shoot

 

 

Video courtesy of Bryant Robinson/Three Way Productions

 

Music: ‘Spanish Civil War’ by Dylan Reynolds

Mac Miller and Dylan Reynolds were shot exclusively for FAULT Issue 17 by photographer Danny Williams (Topshelf Jr), with styling by Luke Storey (School of Style). The shoot took place at Mac’s house in LA, with most of the Behind the Scenes footage above shot in Mac’s private studio. Mac Miller is one of the most popular rap/hip-hop artists in world music today, with two studio albums which reached #1 and #3 in the US charts. Dylan Reynolds is signed to Mac’s REMember label. The pair grew up together in Pittsburgh, PA.

 

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Mac Miller & Dylan Reynolds were shot at Mac’s private studio in LA by photographer Danny Williams (Topshelf Jr), with styling by Luke Storey (School of Style), exclusively for FAULT Issue 17
Click here to order your copy of this issue!

 

FAULT MAGAZINE ISSUE 17 (WINTER 2012-13) – THE OTHER ISSUE – IS AVAILABLE TO ORDER HERE NOW

 *FAULT MAGAZINE IS AVAILABLE FOR DELIVERY WORLDWIDE*

…Or get your copy digitally via Zinio! 1 year’s subscription = just £14.40

FAULT Future: Broods

It was the razor-sharp electro-pop sound of “Bridges” that set the blogosphere on fire. For New Zealand’s BROODS, it took no time at all before Capital Records and Polydor came knocking on their door, least of all landing a highly coveted offer to support the second leg of Haim’s recent UK tour. Siblings Georgia and Caleb Nott continue to ignite the embers of intrigue surrounding their young band, especially when they tell us they were working café jobs some three months ago. Quite simply, they seem to have emerged, fully formed, out of nowhere.

BROODS’ highly introspective songs are as catchy as they are delicate, employing an array of synthesizers—and the production of Joel Little, the jewel in Lorde’s crown—to make confessional moments full and sometimes shake a venue. Although Georgia and Caleb stake their claim on the inspiration of such ethereal artists as Bat for Lashes and Oh Land, their meteoric rise to the top can’t help but bring to mind a burly wide receiver charging down the field. They’re taking that pigskin all the way to the end zone.

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How did music come to you?

We grew up with music all around us. Both of our parents play music and our extended family members are very musical as well. They’ve always been really supportive of anything that we did creatively. From early on, they always encouraged us to paint and play music. We have awesome parents and we’re very lucky to have that support system. But it wasn’t until we got to high school that we really took it seriously. We had a very cool music teacher who always encouraged us to write and record our own stuff.

Can you name some of the more iconic artists who have inspired you?

People like Thom Yorke and James Blake. Outside of that, Georgia’s influences are very strong, female vocalists such as Lykke Li and Natasha Kahn from Bat for Lashes. She definitely gravitates toward women vocalists who are fearless in the way that they write music and perform.

How do you divide up duties between Georgia and yourself? For instance, are you very involved in writing lyrics yourself?

With the EP, our writing process changed all the time. Sometimes we would go into the studio and write from scratch, and we would have equal input during the process. Other times, Georgia has a full written demo that she will bring into the studio that consists of vocals set to piano. She starts by recording in her bedroom and we build the track from there.

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What is it like to work so closely as siblings in a creative field?

People always ask if we fight and things like that. It’s very easy when it comes to writing music together because we understand each other’s strengths, back to front and inside out. It’s very easy to communicate our ideas to each other, so it proves to be really easy when we get into the studio. We tell each other if we don’t like something and no one gets offended. It’s a lot of fun writing as siblings.

In our past conversation, you brought up the influence of Oh Land.

I’m personally a huge fan of Oh Land and everything she does. It felt so different when she first started writing music. I was so captivated by her production and melody lines. I find her so interesting. I love a lot of Scandinavian music. I’m a big fan of anything that comes out of that part of the world.

Bridges” and “Never Gonna Change” is very much pop, but they do have this introspective, dark center to them in the lyrics especially. Where does that darkness come from?

Both of those tracks came from Georgia’s demos. She has always been more of a darker writer. I guess she feels most inspired to write songs when she feels like she needs closure about something.

How did you first meet Joel Little, a producer that you guys share with Lorde?

We first met Joel three years ago. We were doing a high school Battle of the Bands in New Zealand and Joel, along with his manager, approached us. They wanted to write a song with us and produced a song for the band that we were in at the time. I guess our relationship kept going and evolved over time from there. When that project didn’t quite work out, we decided to keep writing together. We all get along so well. It’s great to see him experiencing all this success.

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The same can be said about BROODS. How are you processing everything that’s happening right now?

It’s really crazy. Georgia and I were working in cafes just three months ago. I was at university and things like that. Now we’re traveling the world and playing these shows. People want to come to these shows and we’re selling out shows. It’s crazy to think where we were just months ago and where we are now. It’s happening very fast and something new pops up every day. It’s super exciting, man.

Does anything scare you while you’re on this journey? There’s a lot riding on the choices you make at this stage of your career.

We have no idea how things will unfold. It’s happening so fast that we have to take things day by day. I think the most important thing is to stay true to who we are. As cheesy as that sounds, we have to remain humble about the whole thing. Our parents would probably slap us in the face if we didn’t.

What is your FAULT?

I get stressed out quite easily. That’s probably my biggest fault. And it’s usually due to Georgia because she’s often in her own world.

BROODS self-titled EP is out now. The duo’s debut LP is slated for release this fall.

 

Words: Kee Chang
Photography: Victoria Stevens
Styling: Shandi Alexander
Make-Up/Hair: Kelsey Morgan

Mac Miller & Dylan Reynolds – exclusive shoot for FAULT Issue 17

 

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Mac Miller & Dylan Reynolds were shot at Mac’s private studio in LA by photographer Danny Williams (Topshelf Jr), with styling by Luke Storey (School of Style), exclusively for FAULT Issue 17
Click here to order your copy of this issue!

Music, friendship, success and going global. Sound great? Yep, we agree.

Friends since elementary school, and now bringing their individual styles to the world at large, Mac Miller and Dylan Reynolds might represent completely different genres but they also share a passion for great composition and all-round musical ability.

While rappers traditionally talk a big game when it comes to representing their home town and their friends, it’s hard to think of any who come close to the level of loyalty and belief shown by Mac in Dylan. We caught up with the Pittsburgh-born duo at Mac’s house in LA (thanks again Mac, we had a blast). While Dylan posed in Mac’s private studio for our shoot, Mac shunned the limelight and insisted that Dylan be the focus of our piece.

This wasn’t a meaningless show of sentimentality. Mac clearly believes in Dylan’s talent – and it’s hard to argue about musical ability with a man who has garnered almost implausible levels of success in such a short time. Over the past couple of years, the facts speak for themselves: two studio albums full of hit songs, millions of fans, the launch of his own record label and an MTV show in his honour.

Listening to Dylan’s work, we can’t see why you’d want to disagree with Mac. Signed to Mac’s REMember Music label (a classic example of ‘putting your money where your mouth is’), Dylan brings a unique talent to the roster. His flawless (or should we say FAULTless?) voice is matched by the incredible emotion he brings to each of his songs. It really is a pleasure to hear an artist register the level of feeling that Dylan does while still hitting his notes so cleanly.

Speaking to the two artists, one thing became immediately and abundantly clear: both of them put great stock in their personal convictions. Neither have any intention of compromising their integrity for a quick fix of fame – that is most likely something else that has kept the pair so close for so long. They’ve kept their own styles while retaining a respect for other people’s – more than that, they’ve both openly embraced diverse genres and inspirations. It’s something that Dylan is only just beginning to show in his music that is available to the wider public (check out ‘Tightrope’) but it’s something that is definitely to be applauded.

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Singer-songwriter Dylan Reynolds – stepping into the spotlight in 2014. Grooming by Anna Branson.

FAULT: Mac – 2013: what a year for you! T.V show, tours, mix-tapes, launching your own record label, a clothing line… What’s up next for you?

Mac: If I told you that, I’d have to kill you.

What kind of talent are looking to sign to your REMember Label?

I’m looking for people who have a genuine love for music. I’m not looking for people who want a ticket to the “Big Show”. I want people who are ready to build and learn and become great. I want artists with potential and an open mind. No specifics in genre.

How would you describe Dylan’s music and what kind of impact do you see him having on the industry?

Dylan is honest. In a world where young people are manipulated and turned into consumers. Dylan is the truth. He is a young man with a story to tell. He has a passion for the art and he just wants to inspire people. He is not trying to turn his fans into consumers and become a product. His goals are far higher.

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Interview and production by Leah Blewitt. Filmed footage by Bryant Robinson. Special thanks: Hayley Cammarata

FAULT: Dylan, can you tell us more about your musical background? How long have you been writing and recording, and who/what have been the biggest influences on your sound?

Dylan: I started playing guitar and writing when as a teenager after my family moved out to a pretty isolated house in the country. So it was really out of boredom at the time, although it quickly morphed into something very different. Early on I started as a drummer.

You’ve been working on your EP – did you have an overall theme in mind for the tracks? What were some of the influences behind the singles? We’re especially curious about ‘Spanish Civil War’…

There is a definite theme to this album. It starts with a track called ‘Lifeline’ (the title track), which is about a time in a relationship when I realized I wasn’t going to die if it ended. So it’s essentially about a toxic co-dependent relationship in its final stage. The album kind of follows this trend and documents different stages of multiple relationships in different surrealistic settings.

Did you ever think in a million years, when you were growing up in Pittsburgh, that you’d ever being making music, working and touring together with Mac?

I think I always had a feeling that we were both going to be involved with music pretty early on, but I had no idea that it was going to turn into what it is. Working this closely with one of your best friends is pretty special.

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Get the full shoot and interview – only in FAULT Issue 17.
Click here to order your copy for delivery worldwide!

What are you currently working on, Dylan, and what are you plans for 2014?

I’ve just finished my debut EP and I have a video for my single ”Young and Set” that will be coming out soon as well. I don’t know whats going to happen in 2014 but think its gonna be a big year for me in some way.

FAULT MAGAZINE ISSUE 17 (WINTER 2013-14) – THE OTHER ISSUE – IS AVAILABLE TO ORDER NOW

 *FAULT MAGAZINE IS AVAILABLE FOR DELIVERY WORLDWIDE*

…Or get your copy digitally via Zinio! 1 year’s subscription = just £14.40

SXSW 2014: FAULTless guide to our favourite music, shows and food at the Austin festival

definitive guide

 

Part of enjoying SXSW is getting away from 6th street –  and even the east side, for that matter – and delving into the rest of what Austin has to offer. 2014 will be this editor’s sixth year attending the festival and, on top of that, I’m a native Austinite, so let me show you my side of town…

 

artists

RÜFÜS DU SOL

Chela

Goldroom

COIN

Stwo

Kaytranada

Tinashe

BASECAMP

Saint Pepsi

London Grammar

Sylvan Esso

Tove Lo

SHOWS

 

In accordance with the United States Constitution and the preservation of life, liberty and freedom, I’ve only included free shows here. So let’s get started, shall we?

Things get underway on TUESDAY, MARCH 11TH with KARMALOOP x Do Androids Dance x Peligrosa. This five-day show presentation launches at Volstead with bass music progenitors Brenmar and Jacuzzi, so expect there to be lots of hip swinging in the crowd.

Volstead – 1500 e. 6th St. // 7PM – 2AM Full line up: Chingo Bling / Joao Brasil / Brenmar / Jacuzzi / Dirtyfinger / MSCLS – Furoche / Keeper / Royal Highness / Christopher Carr / Sonora / Peligrosa RSVP

On WEDNESDAY, MARCH 12TH, the number of shows increases exponentially as it’s the first *official* day of the music portion of the festival. Here are four music unofficial showcases to hit up for the day.

B+Q’s BBQ AT LAMBERTS – C3 PRESENTS 2014 SXSW DAY PARTY Full line up: San Fermin / MOON TAXI / Panama Wedding / HOLYCHILD / The Ceremonies / Spanish Gold Lambert’s Downtown Barbeque – 401 W 2nd Street // 12PM – 5PM

SexPop Showcase Full line up: Gemini Club / French Horn Rebellion / Fmlybnd / Cardiknox / Night Drive / Story of the Running Wolf / Thief / Touch Sensitive / 8th Grader / Hot Cops / THE PASS RSVP

Learning Secrets and Soul Clap Records Present: Soul Clap (All Night Long) Full line up: Soul Clap (all night long) RSVP

Binary Records

IHEARTCOMIX @ Empire Control Room

Nintendo x Pennzoil

FOOD
For the bitches who brunch, I’d suggest trying Yellow Jacket Social Club.

Yellow Jacket Social Club

1704 E 5th St, Austin, TX 78702

My friend took me here this past Christmas break but it’s been an Austin establishment for a minute. Located on East 5th St., YJSC is dive-y chic, you know, the kind of place you could maybe go to for a date and also maybe get kicked out of for belligerence at 2AM. I should also mention that their shrimp and grits is absolutely divine.

Hyde Park Bar & Grill has been a favorite of mine since college.

 Hyde Park Bar & Grill

4206 Duval St, Austin, TX 78751

It’s located in the Hyde Park neighborhood just North of The University of Texas campus, tucked away on a street lined with craftsmen homes and unnecessary speed bumps. I love driving up to the restaurant because they’ve got a giant sign in the shape of a fork always with something different on the end (sometimes it’s a meatball and sometimes it’s the entire world!).

The menu’s a little pricier by Austin standards, but pretty much everything here is good and the portions are *Texas* sized. If you’re adventurous and not too concerned about your waistline I’d suggest the Texas Horseshoe – Texas toast topped with 8oz. of round chuck, spicy cheese sauce, hyde park fries, more spicy cheese sauce, diced tomatoes, fresh scallions.

Oh hey there! So if you look out the window from Hyde Park Bar & Grill you’ll see another one of my Austin restaurant staples – Mother’s.

Mothers Cafe & Garden

4215 Duval St, Austin, TX 78751

This place for the vegetarians and vegetable lovers who don’t want to sacrifice on taste. The restaurant itself is pretty no frills but still feels very homey with lush greenery filling every corner of the room. Again, pretty much everything here is good; my go-to is the spinach salad topped with cashew tamarind dressing mmm mmmm.

LATE NIGHT
If you’ve got that late night hunger Trudy’s has got you covered.

Trudy’s

Texas Star location: 409 W 30th St, Austin, TX 78705

South Star location: 901 Little Texas Ln, Austin, Texas 78745

Their tagline of “Casual Tex-Mex” is everything you need to know, and with three locations there’s always a Trudy’s near you. Good for large groups and avocado lovers (try their stuffed avocado). Their Mexican martini splashed with tequila instead of gin and vermouth is a highway to the dangerzone, but also great if you’re looking to get down.

Kerbey Lane has been around for as long as I can remember and has been great since even before then.

Kerby Lane Cafe 

South location: 3003 South Lamar Blvd., Austin, Texas 78704

UT location: 2606 Guadalupe St., Austin, TX 78705

Central location: 3704 Kerbey Lane, Austin, TX 78731

You can’t go wrong with anything off their menu, whether it’s their pancakes of the week or chicken fried chicken. Oh and let’s not forget their signature Kerby queso.

It’s just pure coincidence that the last recommendation for late night eats happens to be another Tex-Mex place. What I meant to say is, WELCOME TO AUSTIN. I have fond memories from undergrad of hitting up Polvo’s with a group of friends and ordering several pitchers of margaritas.

Polvo’s

2004 S 1st St, Austin, TX 78704

I don’t even like margaritas but the chill hang-out-for-hours atmosphere is enough for Polvo’s to make the list.

FOOD TRUCKS

WARNING: My friend own’s this food truck. WARNING: It is dangerously delicious. It’s called Patrizi’s and it’s possibly the best Italian food in Austin. Nick has catered some SXSW events in the past, but this year he’s opted to stand alone. Drop by on Wednesday when he creates a special menu of treats not found on the usual list.

Patrizi’s 2307 Manor Road, Austin, TX 78722.  You’re listlessly wandering the East Side in search of snack-tisfaction. You smell the sweet aroma of pizza coming from the parking lot of Violet Crown and that’s when you see it -

VIA 313 Pizza 1111 East 6th, Austin, TX 78702 . This place has saved my life on multiple late night occasions with its gourmet Detroit style slices. Try “The Cadillac” here: gorgonzola cheese, fig preserves, shaved prosciutto and parmesan all topped with a balsamic glaze.

Veracruz Tacos 1704 E Cesar Chavez, Austin, TX 78702. Austin’s not Austin without tacos and there’s no place quite like Veracruz’s. Located on East Cesar Chavez, Veracruz’s Tacos are all natural using only fresh ingredients and homemade tortillas.

That’s it from us before SXSW. Hope to see your bright and shining faces in Austin this week!

FOLLOW OUR EDITOR NANCY DURING SXSW ON TWITTER @RETROGLO AND INSTAGRAM @THECULTUREOFME

Sequoia Emmanuelle, fashion/art photographer and FAULT collaborator, launches book project on Kickstarter

FAULT are delighted to see regular collaborator, LA based photographer Sequoia Emmanuelle, take the plunge into publishing with the hugely anticipated release of a coffee table book to celebrate her work after 13 years in the industry.

Sequoia Emmanuelle book project 2

Sequoia is self-publishing the book of her works, entitled Duende (loosely translated from Spanish as having soul, a heightened state of emotion, expression and authenticity), with the help of independent backers via crowd-sourcing platform Kickstarter. The project, which can be found here, has already exceeded its original  pledge target of $15, 000 with 13 days still to go before the official Kickstarter closing point for potential backers. It’s an incredible and well-deserved achievement for the artist, who we hope will have many more backers before the project closes to ensure that the book is the best it can possibly be.

Sequoia Emmanuelle book project

You can check out some of Sequoia’s incredible work for previous FAULT issues below.  The 300 page, 11″ x 14″ book itself will be designed by award-winning designer Eli Morgan and can be pre-ordered now via Sequoia’s Kickstarter page for the reduced price of $60 (RRP: $80). Grab one while you can!

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‘Checkered’ by Sequoia Emmanuelle – inside FAULT Issue 17

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‘Enter the Dragon by Sequoia Emmanuelle – inside FAULT Issue 13

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‘Checkered’ by Sequoia Emmanuelle – inside FAULT Issue 17

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‘Enter the Dragon by Sequoia Emmanuelle – inside FAULT Issue 13

FAULT Focus: 2013 films ‘Rush’, ‘Runner Runner’ and ‘Inside Llewyn Davis’ under the spotlight

Throughout 2013, we saw a number of films that catered to various audiences based on hobbies and activities.

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Perhaps the most noteworthy was Rush, one of the most acclaimed sports films released in years. For those who love professional sports, whether that means following Formula 1 racing in everyday life or simply harboring a love for competition, Rush was a thrilling and dramatic adventure that delved into the different approaches great athletes take to competition, and how these approaches reflect in their lives.

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Another example of a film geared toward a specific audience was Runner Runner, the underwhelming online gambling thriller. Despite its disappointing execution, the premise behind the film was sound – at least from a marketing perspective. These days, online gambling activity is incredibly high, so naturally the film was of interest to thousands of real-life gamblers. At popular online poker site Bet Fair, for example, you can find thousands of active gamers live at any time—typically up to 15,000—in addition to tournaments scheduled throughout the day. At online sports booking and slot machines, there’s betting activity going on 24/7 that caters to people’s love of Internet gaming. Clearly Runner Runner had an enormous built-in audience and it was a pity that a film was such a strong cast failed so spectacularly to live up to its hype.

Perhaps more than any other film of 2013, Inside Llewyn Davis catered to a specific genre of fan: music lovers. Music films and biopics that get major releases tend to do very well, as they often delve into the fascinating lives and cultures of musicians, and showcase incredible songs and albums along the way. And despite its focus on what might now be considered a musical subculture (folk), Inside Llewyn Davis was no exception, offering a deep and profound look at the life of a struggling musician.

LlewynDavis_1

The film surrounds Llewyn Davis (Oscar Isaac), a fictional folk singer living in Greenwich Village in New York City in 1961. At the outset of the film, Davis’s folk partner has committed suicide, and Davis is struggling to make ends meet. His solo album (which shares the same title as the film) isn’t selling well, and from making a fool of himself at the local Gaslight Cafe, to dissevering he may be the father of a friend’s wife’s unborn child, to general financial and career woes, he can’t seem to put together a string of success.

This is essentially the plot of the film: we watch Davis move from place to place, hitchhiking and sleeping on couches as he tries to piece his life together without any idea of what he wants the finished product to look like. Though it certainly grows a bit numbing and sad—even frustrating, at times—Inside Llewyn Davis is both an impassioned and a quirky look at the journey of a struggling musician, which in many ways is even more fascinating than that of a successful one.

The film also stars Justin Timberlake, Carey Mulligan, and (Coen brothers favourite) John Goodman, and, just as Runner Runner and Rush appealed to online gambling enthusiasts and sports fanatics respectively, Inside Llewyn Davis is an absolute must-see for any music lover.