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Burn Movie Review

Sizzlingly Odd
In his debut feature, writer/director Mike Gan has created a small film that, if there's justice, will attain a cult-like status. "Burn" takes place in the course of one evening and entirely within the confines of a rural, out-of-the-way gas station shop.
It's the kind of place that loners might wander into for a hot cup of coffee at 3am. Obviously this is not a big budget film, but Gan squeezes an awful lot of goodness out of it. Maybe we should call it badness.





Cold Hart - Good Morning Cruel World Music Album Reviews

With live instrumentation and a hard-won sense of optimism, the GothBoiClique artist’s official debut makes a case for itself in the pop-punk lineage.

Cold Hart, born Jerick “Jay” Quilisadio, is a founding member of GothBoiClique, the internet-based emo-rap crew that includes YAWNS, former Tigers Jaw vocalist Wicca Phase Springs Eternal, Lil Tracy, Horse Head, fish narc, and, most famously, the late Lil Peep. Merging pop-punk, trap, and SoundCloud rap, GothboiClique’s infectious, knowingly bratty songs tackle serious topics: depression, drugs, tormented relationships, and self-destruction. As with MySpace-era emo rock, much current emo rap (with the exception of Peep) is as reviled by critics as it is adored by the young, sad, and extremely online. But with live instrumentation and a hard-won sense of optimism, Cold Hart’s official debut Good Morning Cruel World makes a case for itself in the pop-punk lineage.

Quilisadio bills the album as a makeover. “It’s more about illustrating emotions instead of wanting to be depressed and numb,” he told i-D. “It’s also about leaving toxic relationships and waking up, even though you know the world is shitty.” On past EPs and one-off singles like “Spyro” or “Thru the Screen,” Coldy (as he’s affectionately known) sounded typically downtempo and downhearted. There’s plenty of that on Cruel World too, especially in the second half, but it’s the open-hearted moments that shine brightest.

The sentiment is best captured on “EYES,” with its driving guitar riff, handclap hi-hats, and alive-again chorus: “Eyes wide shut, screaming, ‘I’m not afraid of loving’/Fuck me up ’cause I’m so used to feeling nothing.” The video sends Cold Hart and collaborator Rawksa on a nighttime cruise, alternately hanging out of a sunroof and hanging out on a stairwell. Like so many legendary nights, it’s somehow both kinetic and ordinary.

GothBoiClique has long used samples to honor influences: the Microphones on Lil Peep’s “Beamer Boy,” Senses Fail on Lil Lotus’ “Bodybag.” Cold Hart’s new direction finds him transitioning to the live-band sound explored on 2018’s Wish Me Well EP, but his references are no less overt. “You know that I want you in the worst way/Taking Back Sunday on a Thursday,” he sings on the upbeat single “Hot Pink Lighter,” before borrowing a TBS lyric for the hooky, beat-driven “Leo Szn.” Playing live eliminates sample-clearance headaches, and it fleshes out Cold Hart’s sound, allowing him to inhabit his world more fully. In videos for “Nick Cave In” and “Hot Pink Lighter,” you could almost mistake him for a star of MTV2 circa 2003—until a closer look reveals that all members of his backing band are played by YAWNS.

If the third-wave emo affect is bitterness—life is a letdown and your ex-lover is to blame—the pop-punk call to mosh comes from a wonder at the heart’s capacity. Cold Hart never participates in the misogyny that an unfortunate amount of emo rap shares with its third-wave predecessors. Instead, like Blink-182 or Simple Plan, his enthusiasm crests in moments of lovestruck weightlessness, buoyed by the easy charm of the Long Beach skater scene he grew up in. He’s fond of heart imagery and, fittingly, Cruel World ends on its own sort of beaming heart-emoji sendoff: a cover of Sarina Paris’ proto-nightcore club banger “Look at Us.” Celebratory, nostalgic, and a little absurd, it’s the sound of an artist ready to embrace joy alongside pain.

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