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<p>Blur</p>

Blur

Credit: Pennie Smith

Watch: Blur's new song 'Under the Westway' gets a performance video

British band bowed two new tracks earlier this week

As promised, Blur delivered two new songs via Twitter this week, "Under the Westway" and "The Puritan." Both now have official lyrics videos, and now one has a performance music video.

Check out Blur's Damon Albarn behind the keys on "Under the Westway," filmed in the studio. It confirms the suspicion that drummer Dave Rowntree need only toms to make a beat interesting, that kid instruments still have a place in "adult" music, and Albarn must have a deep-seeded affinity for Procol Harum's "A Lighter Shade of Pale."

Blur last released new music in 2010 on Record Store Day, a track called "Fool's Day" penned for their Olympics gig. Blur are skedded to perform at the London Olympics closing ceremony on Aug. 12 and are playing two Swedish music festivals this summer. Albarn has been shady on details if their summer gigs are the last of their reunion, but at least there's a 21-disc reissue and retrospective of Blur's efforts, coming out on July 30.

As for Albarn's other major project, Gorillaz, he told the Guardian that he and co-founder and artist Jamie Hewlett were no longer on speaking terms. Yeesh. See you guys at Coachella 2020.

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'Anna Karenina' poster

'Anna Karenina' poster

Credit: Focus

Keira Knightley is center stage in new 'Anna Karenina' poster

Joe Wright's adaptation co-stars Jude Law and Aaron Taylor-Johnson

We've seen the "Anna Karenina" trailer and heard star Keira Knightley talk about the challenges of playing the title role, now take a peek at the poster for the potential award season heavyweight below.

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<p>Hannah Hoekstra (left) in &quot;Hemel.&quot;</p>

Hannah Hoekstra (left) in "Hemel."

Credit: Circe Films

Karlovy Vary: 'Oh Boy' and 'Hemel' offer contrasting takes on young European ennui

A pair of impressive debut features among the festival's highlights

KARLOVY VARY, Czech Republic -- I am typing this in the tastefully toxic orange surrounds of an easyJet flight to Gatwick, which sadly means that my week at the Karlovy Vary International Film Festival is over.

It’s been, as I think my previous diary pieces have made clear, a most enjoyable one: angry Czech sunshine, a healthy patchwork of films, raucous audiences, parties ranging from the luxe to the pilsner-pickled, my first live Q&A sessions, Thai foot massages, a few more films and my mandatory festival injury – this time, a spider bite sustained on a hike yesterday through Karlovy Vary’s dense, chapel-speckled surrounding forest. That’s what I get for leaving the cinema for one afternoon, I guess. (Incidentally, the only superpower I have yet gained from this experience is a left ankle slightly wider than my right, but I wait patiently.)

My festival coverage, however, is not yet finished. I still have one of the week’s highlights, an interview with Kenneth Lonergan about the upcoming extended cut of “Margaret,” to transcribe and relate, while I have, as yet, only written about a handful of the films I’ve actually seen at Karlovy Vary.

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<p>Muse: bir-nir-nir waaaaaahhhhhh</p>

Muse: bir-nir-nir waaaaaahhhhhh

Watch the music video to Muse's awful Olympics song

Cue the Greek choir

Muse's new song "Survival," to "officially" promote the London Olympic games, sounds like a parody of a Pulp and Queen song, only the British rock band is totally, totally serious.

The music video for the song utilizes approximately the same font Trapper Keeper used for it's "guitars" themed product. I want to write the all the names of my crushes on it.

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<p>Shovels &amp; Rope</p>

Shovels & Rope

Song of the Day Exclusive Premiere: Shovels & Rope's 'Keeper' is just that

South Carolinian folk-country duo is the real deal

Murder fiction and country songs make excellent repeat bedfellows. The themes in country classic "Jackson" have been rehashed and manipulated a thousand times over, and the word "Carolina" (and her low-country cousin "caroline") uttered by every Southern-loving folkie. Whiskey doesn't rhyme with much, but it is a good source of harmony and writing material.

There are certain worthy themes that will always crop up in Americana, some delivered more convincingly than others. There is a required element of authenticity and self-awareness for little country bands now, the ones outlying radio and the traditional Grammy categories. And Shovels & Rope have that Real Deal card.

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<p>The &quot;Deadwood&quot;&nbsp;brain trust gathers to discuss what to do with Wolcott.</p>

The "Deadwood" brain trust gathers to discuss what to do with Wolcott.

Credit: HBO

'Deadwood' Rewind: Season 2, Episode 7: 'E.B. Was Left Out' (Veterans edition)

Charlie picks a fight, Seth makes an offer and Farnum throws a fit

We're into week 6 of our summer trip back through David Milch's epic revisionist Western "Deadwood." As always with this project, we're going to have two parallel discussions going at once: identical reviews, but one where the comments section is just for people who are new to the series and don't want to be spoiled on anything past the events of the episode being discussed, and one for people who know "Deadwood" backwards and forwards, and want to be able to discuss it all at once. This is the veteran-friendly version; click here for the newbie-safe one.

A review of episode 7, "E.B. Was Left Out," coming up just as soon as I apologize for my work with the decimals...

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<p>The &quot;Deadwood&quot;&nbsp;brain trust gathers to discuss what to do with Wolcott.</p>

The "Deadwood" brain trust gathers to discuss what to do with Wolcott.

Credit: HBO

'Deadwood' Rewind: Season 2, Episode 7: 'E.B. Was Left Out' (Newbies edition)

Charlie picks a fight, Seth makes an offer and Farnum throws a fit

We're into week 6 of our summer trip back through David Milch's epic revisionist Western "Deadwood." As always with this project, we're going to have two parallel discussions going at once: identical reviews, but one where the comments section is just for people who are new to the series and don't want to be spoiled on anything past the events of the episode being discussed, and one for people who know "Deadwood" backwards and forwards, and want to be able to discuss it all at once. This is the newbie-safe version; click here for the veteran-friendly one.

A review of episode 7, "E.B. Was Left Out," coming up just as soon as I apologize for my work with the decimals...

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<p>Melissa Leo and Louis C.K. in &quot;Louie.&quot;</p>

Melissa Leo and Louis C.K. in "Louie."

Credit: FX

Review: 'Louie' - 'Telling Jokes/Set Up'

Louie gets into trouble with guest star Melissa Leo

A review of tonight's "Louie" coming up just as soon as I have two clam shacks in Sag Harbor...

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<p>Elijah Wood and Allison Mack in &quot;Wilfred.&quot;</p>

Elijah Wood and Allison Mack in "Wilfred."

Credit: FX

Review: 'Wilfred' - 'Dignity'

Wilfred plays frustrated comedian at Ryan's office

A review of tonight's "Wilfred" coming up just as soon as I schedule an exit interview with the snow globe...

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<p>From &quot;True Blood's&quot; next episode &quot;Boot and Rally&quot;</p>

From "True Blood's" next episode "Boot and Rally"

Credit: HBO

Listen: Iggy Pop and Best Coast combine for new 'True Blood' tune

'Let's Boot and Rally' goes together like 'sexy' and 'vampires'

The folks over at "True Blood" had the ingenuity to combine Nick Cave with Neko Case for one of the show's songs before, and so music supervisor Gary Calamar tried to step up to the plate again for another masterful combo, and with an original song to boot.

The result is rock legend Iggy Pop and Best Coast's Bethany Cosentino combining for "Let's Boot and Rally," for the episode "Boot and Rally" airing on July 8 this weekend. Sexy vampires will be able to do what sexy vampires do to the strains of more Iggy and less Best Coast, but that's no problem. Calamar and James Combs' songwriting feels like a simple commotion, and it makes me want to shimmy. And seek blood.

Check out the whole story of the get-together and stream the track at KCRW, where Calamar works when he's not finding music that sounds like a clingy, lace dress for "True Blood."

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<p>Benicio Del Toro and Demian Bichir seemed to get along much better at the 'Savages' press day than they do in Oliver Stone's new film.</p>

Benicio Del Toro and Demian Bichir seemed to get along much better at the 'Savages' press day than they do in Oliver Stone's new film.

Credit: HitFix

Benicio Del Toro and Demian Bichir talk about eye-to-eye combat in 'Savages'

Oliver Stone's bad guys seem to be having a good deal of fun

The last film I screened at the Cannes Film Festival this year was "Seven Days In Havana," an anthology film about life in Cuba.  One of the segments was directed by Benicio Del Toro, and he was there on stage along with Gaspar Noe, Laurent Cantet, Julio Medem, and the others.  Del Toro seemed like he was humbled to be standing onstage among the other filmmakers, and it was interesting to see this wildly charismatic guy at his most human and nervous.

That charisma is on full display in "Savages," where he plays Lado, a disgusting enforcer for the Baja Cartel.  It's one of those performances where every little detail, every choice that Del Toro made, plays into the character and the story.  Lado is like a shark, and in those moments where the protective membrane rolls up over his eyes, metaphorically speaking, just before he tears into some poor bastard, Del Toro is terrifying.  It's great work, and he seems to relish every moment he has in the film.

Sitting down to talk to him, I was surprised to see him paired with Demián Bichir, who was so tremendously good in "A Better Life" last year.  Bichir has an interesting role in "Savages," a sort of middle-management cartel figure, and in one of the most memorable scenes in the film, Bichir and Del Toro end up on opposite sides of an interrogation.  It's brutal and awful and something we had to discuss with the both of them.

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<p>Paul Dano and Zoe Kazan on the set of &quot;Ruby Sparks.&quot;</p>

Paul Dano and Zoe Kazan on the set of "Ruby Sparks."

Credit: Fox Searchlight

Exclusive: 'Ruby Sparks' Zoe Kazan explains the story of her debut screenplay

Plus: New footage from the late summer Fox Searchlight release

t's been a strange summer season so for at the art house. Unlike last year, which was dominated early both critically and at the box office by "Midnight in Paris," "The Tree of Life" and "Beginners," 2012 looked like it would be much quieter.  That's hardly been the case.  Focus Features' "Moonrise Kingdom" is a certifiable hit, "Best Exotic Marigold Hotel" is pretty much a global blockbuster (even if it's not really playing to the traditional specialty crowd), Weinstein's "Intouchables" is a solid foreign language player, the success of Millenium's "Bernie" is proving an embarrassment to all the major indies who turned it down and "To Rome With Love" and "The Beasts of the Southern Wild" have been superb in their limited runs so far. One film that could tap into the crowd that enjoyed "Moonrise" is "Ruby Sparks."

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