New Releases

Daniela Brooker's New Single "Body Language" is Steamy and Soulful

The 24-year-old singer just hit 3.5 million views on YouTube.

On Friday, Half-Venezuelan and half-British 24-year-old singer Daniela Brooker released her new single Body Language.

Looking for a new song to add to your bedroom mix? Look no further than this sexy new tune about falling in love with someone new. The song's low beats and Brooker's sensual voice will heat up any candle-lit date romantic evening. Sung in both English and Spanish, you don't need to be bilingual to understand the language of attraction.

Brooker told Twelv that she defines her music as "R&B but with influences from different genres." She just started writing in Spanish this year, and finds singing in both English and Spanish fresh and exciting.

When asked what she hopes people take from her music, the singer said: "I hope they hear sincerity in all my music... I really try and be honest and always write about something that means a lot to me... I just want people to get lost in the music for those 3 minutes and feel good!"

Follow Daniela Brooker on Facebook | Twitter | Instagram


Joshua Smalley is a New York-based writer, editor, and playwright. Find Josh at his website and on Twitter: @smalleywrites.


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MUSIC

Shawn Mendes Wants to be Bill Murray When He Grows Up

The pop star's new music video for "Lost in Japan" parodies Sofia Coppola's 2003 film "Lost in Translation."

Vevo & Universal

"Let's never come here again because it would never be as much fun," a 17-year-old Scarlett Johansson says to a man three times her age, and I was thinking the same thing, except maybe only the first part.

Released late last night, Shawn Mendes's new music video for "Lost in Japan" takes its plot from the 2003 romantic-comedy film Lost in Translation starring Bill Murray and Scarlett Johansson, where a lonely, aging movie star has a foreign love affair with a conflicted newlywed. The prolific Canadian singer-songwriter is the stand in for Murray, which makes the situation less creepy, but doesn't make it less tired.

We start off the video with Mendes driving through the neon-bright streets of Tokyo, where he sees himself on a billboard selling whiskey. Same as the film, he's in town to film a whiskey commercial Dos Equis-style. But while Mendes is many things (wink), he's definitely not the gritty masculine type who drinks scotch, as evidenced by the later scene where he "shaves" his perfectly hairless face.

Shawn Mendes, Zedd - Lost In Japan (Original + Remix) www.youtube.com

The video skims along, featuring most of the iconic shots from the movie, including the oft-parodied picture of Murray in an ugly-but-silky-looking yellow bathrobe. He eyes his love interest in an elevator, played by 13 Reasons Why actress Alisha Boe, and pursues her karaoke-style (as you do in Japan). We are at least treated to a steamy shower scene, however that doesn't last long enough.

"Lost in Japan" is the second official single off Mendes' 2018 self-titled album, and at the end of the day is still fun and catchy. It has Mendes' usual boyhood romantic charm, leaving the tweens screaming and the gays speechless. The video smartly mixes both the original version of the song and the popular remixed version featuring Zedd.

Still, if the shower scene were extended and all the other scenes were taken out, it wouldn't have hurt the video. It may actually have improved it.


Joshua Smalley is a New York-based writer, editor, and playwright. Find Josh at his website and on Twitter: @smalleywrites.



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In the second episode of The Curious Creations of Christine McConnell, an old man is bound with a ball gag (and likes it), a garden gnome is molested, and the audience learns how to make cake shaped like a Victorian coffee dispenser.

The Netflix October release is prime binging material for those looking to cuddle up with hot apple cider while scrupulously writing notes on recipes for their weekend Halloween party. It will particularly appeal to spook-junkies who appreciate TV of the Pee-wee's Playhouse variety — it has a PG rating but is really meant for adults who appreciate some unconventional, slightly sadomasochist humor.

Viewers are invited into a home "where the strange and unusual are safe and welcome," watched over by the kill-you-with-kindness mistress Christine McConnell, whose hodgepodge entourage of monster puppets bicker as she walks you through how to make some insanely-detailed treats. Her pals include Rose, the roadkill-brought-back-to-life with a fork for a hand, Rankle, the Egyptian mummy cat who demands to be worshipped, and newcomer Edgar, a lovable werewolf who is tempted by the smell of blood. All puppets were made by Henson Alternative, a branch of The Jim Henson Company.

The bizarre series is a fitting platform for real-life baker and artist Christine McConnell, who is known for her Instagram-famous cake creations, as well as turning her parent's Los Angeles home into a real-life monster and gingerbread house. After her home makeovers went viral, McConnell said she was approached by around 300 production companies to do a reality-based show. "I don't really watch that stuff mostly—I mean I have a few guilty pleasures, but I'm much more into scripted TV and storylines, and things like that," she told Eater.

Netflix/The Curious Creations of Christine McConnell

From edible spiders to wolf-claw donuts, the bakes on the show look amazing. One of the stand-out pieces comes in the first episode, when McConnell makes a huge cake perfectly sculpted to look like her house. Outside of the kitchen, the host presents the audience with a how-to on making homemade candles, and even shows off her sewing skills when preparing a dress for a handsome guest who is probably a serial killer.

While cooking tutorials are the focus of the thirty-minute episodes, what makes the series stand apart from shows like The Great British Bake Off is the peculiar story that unfolds as the house welcomes more shady characters and fights off angry neighbors. McConnell's loving relationship with her monster children reminds us of our own family pets, even though our dog may not be actually plotting to murder the mailman. The dialogue has humor that is overt and twisted, and even goes meta at times, like when Christine is telling the audience how to make peanut butter pretzel bones and Rose turns to Rankle to ask "Who is she even talking to?"

For those looking to add a new classic to their October TV marathons, The Curious Creations of Christine McConnell is a series that checks the boxes for spooky, weirdly comforting, and memorable. Check out all six episodes, now streaming on Netflix.

Rating: ⚡⚡⚡


Joshua Smalley is a New York-based writer, editor, and playwright. Find Josh at his website and on Twitter: @smalleywrites.



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