July is just about to tick over into August, a sign that we're approaching the end of the year sooner than we'd like. What better time to take stock? Even if it's just to dole out book and music recommendations – these are the best kinds after all. Some of us are turning to good ol' reality TV for a much-needed ugly cry, while others are spending their Sundays reading famous love letters, starting with Georgia O’Keeffe and Alfred Stieglitz. This is just scratching the surface. Below, find what the RUSSH editors have been watching, reading and listening to in July 2022.
Watch… Line of Duty. I am incredibly late to the party on this one but it is currently my unsolicited, binge-worthy recommendation to all I encounter. If you enjoyed Broadchuch or Bodyguard, this one's for you. It would also be remiss of me not to admit the Tour de France took up a lot of my screen time this July, as it does annually.
Read… Blowing the Bloody Doors Off by Michael Caine. I recently watched My Generation (also worthy of a watch) and felt compelled to learn more about Caine and his experience of the Swinging Sixties. And, Notes on Heartbreak by Annie Lord. Just trust me, and purchase a copy.
Listen… Harry’s House (Harry Styles) or The Queen is Dead (The Smiths). I am currently oscillating between the two. Choose your fighter.
Senior Fashion Editor
Watch… Love on the Spectrum. I’ve needed an ugly cry recently and this show has you feeling ALL of the feelings.
Read… Agatha Christie (all of them) or Our Man in Havana by Graham Greene. I’ve been on a recent classic crime mystery binge.
Listen… The Animal Collective, Bjork's entire music collection and disco always.
Digital Operations Manager
Watch… Yellowstone. I tried to watch this during lockdown and didn’t get past the first five minutes, but I finally pushed through about a month ago and I’m officially in for the long haul. Not entirely sure whether it’s the storyline, the incredible cinematography or my current obsession with cowboy boots which is keeping me hooked, but either way it’s a winner for me.
Read… Daisy Jones and the Six. A very light one, it’s one of the most unique books I’ve read because it’s written as if it’s a transcript of a music documentary. It follows the story of a 70s rock band and their rise to fame. It’s gritty and real and very easy reading for anyone who needs a mental break. The best part? There’s a TV adaption coming to our screens in 2022.
Listen… The You’re Wrong About podcast is currently at the top of my rotation. With topics including Multiple Personality Disorder, Princess Diana, the OJ Simpson trial and the obesity epidemic, it’s a treasure-trove of information presented in the context of correcting the misinterpretations we have of past events and phenomena. Mostly for me I just love the hosts, Mike and Sarah, who are both very easy to listen to whilst still being incredibly insightful and intelligent. It’s my current not-so-guilty pleasure.
Fashion & Brand Features Editor
Watch… Severance. One that has stayed with me for weeks and is so eerie and sinister but in all of the ways you wouldn’t expect. If you are into shows that make commentary on work/life balance and the ways we are likely headed for capitalistic doom, watch it.
Read… Her Body and Other Parties, Carmen Maria Machado. A series of short stories that blend the boundaries of Machado’s signature psychological realism, humour, and horror as her subject matter explores women's bodies and the way violence is inflicted upon them.
Listen… Everybody’s Free (To Wear Sunscreen) by Renegade Soul. A friend recently sent this song to me and it instantly lifts a rubbish mood. A must listen for anyone who is down in the dumps or just wants to smile.
Watch… This month, my brain has been desperate for some mind-numbing joy. So, naturally, I have been indulging in watching reruns of The Office. All it takes is 20-minutes of chaos and cringe and I’m out like a light. Though, I am also heeding Ella’s recommendation and have Severance on my list too. Will be back next month to deliver my review.
Read… Not a conventional submission for this month’s read section, but following a recent conversation with our editor Jess, I have been deep in the rabbit hole of reading famous love letters. It started with Georgia O’Keeffe and Alfred Stieglitz (naturally), but Ernest Hemingway and Marlene Dietrich as well as good ol’ Oscar Wilde have also made my hit list. There will always be something remarkably moving about the way other people write about and to the people they love. The perfect Sunday afternoon read.
Listen… Anything that takes me to European summer. Defogging my car each morning while some variation of the Scorpio’s Mykonos soundtrack plays certainly makes the commute to the office a little bit sweeter.
Watch... Harry Potter has become something of a dirty name since you-know-who came out with repugnant TERF-y opinions. And of course there's the fact that millennials really overdid it with the deathly hallows tattoos. Even still, I've been meaning to watch Harry Potter 20th Anniversary: Return to Hogwarts for some time, and finally snuggled up to my sister on the couch and watched it together. I cried, so there's that. Moving on. I've also enjoyed a heap of TV this month. In no particular order these are the recommendations: Under the Banner of Heaven, Only Murders in the Building, the final season of Better Things and Mystery Road: Origin. I am a simp for young Jay Swan.
Read... Besides rereading John Berger's Ways of Seeing for our next issue, my brain has needed a holiday from books. My friend Annie bought me Meera Sodha's cookbook Fresh India for my birthday, so I've been chewing on that each night before bed. It definitely exacerbates any late-night cravings.
Listen... I've been on my artists from the area bit. That means Billymaree, Hooligan Hefs and ONEFOUR are on rotation. I always appreciate Osman Faruqi and Mahmood Fazal's commentary on the state of Australian hip hip too.
Watch… Westworld. With a new dystopian news title popping up every day, I like to mentally prepare myself with what could happen next. Sentient robots seem fitting.
Read… I’m not much of a reader, but the last book that was able to keep my tiny attention span entertained was Nothing But My Body by Tilly Lawless. Mind you this was 7 months ago, and since then I have only been reading TikTok auto-generated captions…
Listen… The Elvis movie really did a number on me, so I’ve been listening to ‘If I Can Dream’ by Elvis Presley on repeat. In between listens I throw in some Phoebe Bridgers sad girl music, just for good measure.