If, like me, you spent six seasons trying to decide if you loved or hated Girls (I think I loved it, mostly), Search Party should be less of a grapple. It's a quirky millennial satire that draws on the best aspects of Girls - the Brooklyn setting, painfully true-to-life characters, and bitingly clever humour - and throws them together with a tense missing-person mystery to excellent effect. Alia Shawkat is incredible in the lead role and, as a millennial, the snappy dialogue and fast pace made me both laugh and cringe - many jokes land way too close to home. Season one is streaming on Lightbox now, and a second season is due in the near future.
I was 5 years old when Fur Patrol's Pet was released. My parents were big fans, and the album was often heard playing in our house - but there was a point in my teenage years where I rediscovered the single Lydia for myself and realised that it's basically the greatest song ever written. A few weeks ago, after being out of circulation for some time, Pet sprung out of the woodwork and landed on Spotify and Apple Music. Naturally, I've been thrashing it ever since. Along with Stellar's phenomenal album Mix, which is probably the greatest New Zealand pop record of all time, I've been listening to it on repeat and pretending I actually remember the 90s.
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Podcasts are a fascinating platform for fictional stories; audio is unbridled by the financial limitations faced by film and television. I've been meaning to listen to Welcome to Night Vale for about three years now - it's been hanging out, neglected, on my podcasts app the whole time. As a warm-up, I recently raced through Limetown, which was a much more digestible undertaking, consisting of only six half-hour episodes.
Limetown unfolds as a series of news reports from Lia Haddock, a journalist for the fictional radio network APR, who investigates the unsolved disappearance of more than 300 people at a neuroscience facility named Limetown 10 years earlier. Like a podcast version of The X-Files, it's a chillingly immersive experience that gets right under your skin as Lia journeys down a spooky, tangled rabbit hole of unanswered questions. Just prepare yourself for the ending.
If you didn't manage to get your fix of New Zealand music at last week's excellent Others Way Festival, this weekend offers up another chance; Fazerdaze is undertaking her first headline tour of New Zealand. Playing Auckland's Kings Arms on Friday and Wellington's Meow on Saturday, Amelia Murray and her band will showcase the pop-rock perfection of her debut album Morningside, released earlier this year. Joining Fazerdaze in Auckland are Pixels and Night Pilot - both local artists to keep a close eye on.
Listen to our TimeOut Talks podcast below: