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HBO’s ‘Vinyl’: An Illustrated Review of Season 1 Episode 5, ‘He in Racist Fire,’ Turns Up the Heat

HBO's 'Vinyl': An Illustrated Review of Season 1 Episode 5, 'He in Racist Fire,' Turns Up the Heat

LAST WEEK’S REVIEW: A Hard Rain Falls in Episode 4, ‘The Racket’

Indiewire has commissioned artist Jess Rotter, an illustrator and 1970s music enthusiast, to draw her reactions to the new HBO drama “Vinyl,” which features Bobby Cannavale as a record executive in search of personal salvation as well as the next big music sensation.

The heat is slowly rising in Episode 5, beginning with a Jethro Tull-esque band that literally catches on fire during a performance, as the A&R department holds a sad sack showcase of new talent to try and put American Century Records back on the map. Meanwhile, Richie sets up a steamy double date dinner to woo Hannibal into finally signing with the label, only to find that the funk superstar is more interested in getting funky with Devon. And Richie, Jamie and Lester put the pressure on Kip to fire The Nasty Bit’s lead guitarist, Duck: One guitarist too many, one bump over the line…

Informed by a deep knowledge and love for the world of 1970s rock ‘n’ roll, artist Jess Rotter was inspired by her dad’s vinyl covers and comic books growing up in New York. Now based in Los Angeles, Rotter’s intricate hand-drawn psychedelic illustrations have appeared on everything from books to public murals to album covers. Her musical cult shirt line Rotter and Friends has led to official band merch for acts like The Grateful Dead, Sly Stone, Rodriguez, Big Star, Mavis Staples and more. Follow her on Instagram at @rotterandfriends.

“Vinyl” airs Sunday at 9pm on HBO.

READ MORE: Watch: Here’s Martin Scorsese’s Best Robert De Niro Impersonation (Sort Of) 

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