This week's Sunday Observer has posted an interview with Tom, where he shares his recent cultural highlights. Read it in full on the website.
Theatre: Really Really
I saw this play just off Broadway at the MC theatre club. It's directed by David Cromer and written by Paul Downs Colaizzo and stars Zosia Mamet, who is Shoshanna in Girls. It's a beautiful, brutal little play. It deals with the fallout of an accusation that may or may not be true at an American college. It's a sad, savage exploration of this generation that has been conditioned to expect that whatever they want, they deserve. It's fascinating.
Book: The Revolution Was Televised by Alan Sepinwall
This is about the seismic shift in TV in the late 1990s just at a time when everyone thought serialised TV was dead, or that the internet was going to destroy it. The Sopranos and Chris Albrecht at HBO changed everything, leading to shows such as Buffy, Breaking Bad and The Wire etc. It's fascinating – not just in terms of what that says about us as a culture, but what it reveals about each show, from start to finish, and the struggle to get these great works to the screen.
Exhibition: David Bowie is, V&A, London
I saw a sneak preview of this and it looks unbelievable: the costumes and the artwork, the film and photography – I am a huge Bowie fan. I love the new album. The way Where Are We Now? snuck out on the sly was great. He spent his entire life innovating and looking forward, and to suddenly reveal something that feels like he's looking back, is still an innovative move, as with everything else he's done, because he's never done it before.
Yoann Lemoine is predominantly a French graphic designer and music video director. He's just released his first album. His voice is a bit like Antony Hegarty's, with lush orchestral arrangements underneath it, and these raw, urgent beats. It's beautiful. He's my artist of the year so far. I can't wait for the album. The video is stunning too – black and white, shot with a phantom camera. I stumbled across him two weeks ago, and went: "Yes! More of this please…"
We're four years behind the States, but it doesn't matter. It's so universal and heartbreaking and hilarious. It's a path into his surreal mind. It's completely undefinable, unclassifiable. It's like if Curb Your Enthusiasm was happy but sad – I just watch it, it really works. There are sudden moments of real melancholy that hit you in the heart. Absolutely fascinating.
Comedy: Tim Key
I was a giant Daniel Kitson fan for many years and there haven't been many other comedians who make me laugh out loud. But Tim is divisive. I've sat behind people at his shows who have just hated it. To me there's something about his profound and nonsensical poetry – and his delivery. What he does, he's got down perfectly. He could probably make the phone book funny, so I don't even know if it's his writing, but his throwaway delivery just gets me.
Another new interview with Tom can be found on Examiner.com
"I went to an exhibition when I was researching this in Buckingham Palace, which was all his anatomy, and how he'd spent his entire life dissecting bodies. And it was never published. All this work dissipated into the royal notebooks. It was never published. But if it had been, he would have been one of the most important anatomists who had ever lived," Riley said. "The fact that that is an aside to his life is extraordinary. And I think this show pays tribute to all the stuff that perhaps we don't know so much about."
Surprisingly more reviews today which disliked most of the show, but absolutely loved Tom's performance in Da Vinci's Demons. Showrenity called Tom's performance inspired and gave it a C+. Pop Break another...
Riley’s Da Vinci hits every note perfectly — he’s affable and charming, he’s believable in action sequences and scenes of high drama. He makes you feel the artist’s heartbreaking struggles yet he still can throw in some well-placed jokes to keep it light. He makes Da Vinci part genius, part mad man, part party boy, part swashbuckler. It’s a brilliant portrayal. Pop Break.com