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17 May 2016 // 2:30 AM

Jessy Lanza: Oh No

“I just want to impress you," Lanza explains on “Going Somewhere”, and anybody who listens to Oh No can confirm that she’s succeeded.

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17 May 2016 // 2:20 AM

Torn Hawk: Union and Return

Sprawling, ambitious, and sonically sophisticated, Torn Hawk's Union and Return transplants German Romanticism into the digital age.

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17 May 2016 // 2:15 AM

Cannes 2016: ‘Eshtebak’ + ‘I, Daniel Blake’

At Cannes, these two powerful films inspire fury at appalling and seemingly insurmountable social divisions.

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Deerhoof / Ensemble Dal Niente: Balter-Saunier

Not one forgettable moment surfaces; not one skippable track presents itself in this era of impatient listeners waiting for the memorable or gut-punching banger.

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17 May 2016 // 2:10 AM

Goo Goo Dolls: Boxes

Expectations are a dangerous thing.

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17 May 2016 // 2:05 AM

Tacocat: Lost Time

Seattle-based Tacocat return with their third album, Lost Time, a fun and memorable record full of great hooks and bright production that speaks to the experience of the uncertainty and listless of emerging adulthood.

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Slain Journalist’s Open Letter Tackles Racism, Islamophobia, and Free Speech

For all its infamy, few outside of France really understand what Charlie Hebdo is all about. A manifesto posthumously published by its editor, offers insights.

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‘Homintern’ Is Not as Subversive and Liberating as Its Subject Matter

What was unique and liberating about the gay influence on Western culture? Gregory Woods tells only part of the story.

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Daredevil: Season 2, Episode 9 - “Seven Minutes in Heaven”

Each character confronts their true nature with brutal honesty in "Seven Minutes of Heaven".

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Cannes 2016: Spielberg Delivers One of the Best Roald Dahl Adaptations With ‘The BFG’

Intelligent, huge-hearted, and as rich in its dialogue as in its visuals, The BFG is an enchanting adaptation.

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Cannes 2016: In Pursuit of a Poet in Pablo Larraín’s ‘Neruda’

Larraín riffs on Pablo Neruda's biography to create an idiosyncratic and stylized portrait of pursuer and pursued.

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To Read ‘Charlotte Brontë: A Fiery Heart’ Is to Fully Inhabit Haworth Parsonage

Claire Harman's biography of Charlotte Bronte sheds new light on a woman too often confounded with her beloved heroine.

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Why Does the Beach Boys’ ‘Pet Sounds’ Still Have Its Hold on Us?

Fifty years on, Brian Wilson’s emotive musings on love, loss, and loneliness have proven to be truly timeless.

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Mark Pritchard: Under the Sun

Under the Sun is Pritchard discovering his own voice through the voices of others who continue to inspire him today.

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Cannes 2016: Andrea Arnold’s ‘American Honey’ Is an American Folly

Arnold's self-conscious and overlong American road trip runs out of steam long before it reaches its destination.

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Various Artists: Loma - A Soul Music Love Affair Volumes 1 - 4

Future Days Recordings gives us four wax platters that uncover a soul label that time has essentially buried.

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Spookyland: Beauty Already Beautiful

Spookyland’s Beauty Already Beautiful is a rock 'n' roll melting pot filled with youthful disaffection and ugly, everyday romance.

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16 May 2016 // 2:10 AM

Moken: Chapters of My Life

Moken’s Chapters of My Life delivers style, sass and skill to an album that you’ll never want to end.

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16 May 2016 // 2:00 AM

Prince: Never Stop Arguing

Prince's life is over but his music is not, and that music was never just about him, and it was never just about me, and it was never just about you.

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Yeshua Confronts His Daddy Issues in ‘Last Days in the Desert’

In between exchanges with the Devil, Yeshua comes in contact with other folks in the desert, people plainly provided to embody lessons for this troubled son.

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Cannes 2016: Alain Guiraudie Shakes Up the Competition With ‘Staying Vertical’

Alain Guiraudie springs a series of strange surprises, including the Festival's most transgressive sex scene (so far).

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‘Children of Paradise’ Is a Masterpiece of Journalism and Reportage

Children of Paradise is an intellectual history of Iranian politics that helps the reader cut through the spin of mainstream headlines.

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Game of Thrones: Season 6, Episodes 2 and 3 - “Home” and “Oathbreaker”

Seconds chances -- resurrection and return -- abound in the early machinations of the sixth season.

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13 May 2016 // 11:00 AM

Cannes 2016: ‘Café Society’ + ‘Sieranevada’

Two new films at the Cannes Film Festival, Woody Allen's Café Society and Cristi Puiu's Sieranevada, look back on the past, with very different results.

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Cannes 2016: Ken Loach Blasts Britain’s Welfare System in ‘I, Daniel Blake’

Ken Loach's latest is a well-meaning but disappointing attempt to explore the impact of Conservative benefit cuts in the UK.

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In ‘Money Monster’, Everyone Is Watching, But No One Is Listening

Money Monster is stuck between indictments, encouraging you to be mad at the bad media makers, the players in the crooked financial industry, and you, the reckless consumers.

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Bergen, Curtain, and Radner: Saturday Night Live’s Second-Ever Christmas Special Lacks Dumb Blondes

Despite the drunken antics and sexist attitudes of their fellow cast members, it’s the women who brought the laughs in Saturday Night Live’s second Christmas special

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13 May 2016 // 8:10 AM

Young Magic: Still Life

Young Magic's smoldering ambient-pop drifts into new sonic territories on Still Life.

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Fruit Bats: Absolute Loser

The best stuff on the solid Absolute Loser makes for a welcome return of an underrated American band.

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Darrell Scott: Couchville Sessions

As a preservationist, Scott understands how to treasure resources.

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Plants and Animals: Waltzed in From the Rumbling

After a four-year pause for reflection, the band is back as melodic, wistful, and alive with longing as ever.

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Ralph Alessi: A Trumpet King for 2016

Quietly, brilliantly, Brooklyn-based jazz trumpeter Ralph Alessi is everywhere at once, defining the music with flexibility and freedom.

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C-3PO Gains a Red Left Hand in ‘Star Wars: C-3PO #1’

C-3PO's red arm evidently carries more weight than its metal.

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Albanian Hell is Cold in ‘Cash Only’

Though it may not be the most originally plotted crime drama, Cash Only executes its conceit with technical skill and emotional honesty.

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Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D.: Season 3, Episode 19 - “Failed Experiments”

The latest episode lives up to its title, as Inhumans, S.H.I.E.L.D., and the Kree all try, and fail, to change much.

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‘Nebula Awards Showcase 2016’ Will Make Your Toes Curl

Experienced sci-fi readers have seen enough hentai to know where Nebula Awards Showcase 2016 is going.

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‘The Minims’ Frustrates Rather Than Charms

I’m glad The Minims exists, though unfortunately I can’t say that I enjoyed my time with it.

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“To Make the Most of the Moments”: Interview with Filmmaker Suzanne Crocker

Suzanne Crocker and her family spent spend nine months in the bush in a small cabin with no electricity, no running water, and no clocks. She did however, bring a camera.

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Corinne Bailey Rae: The Heart Speaks in Whispers

Bailey Rae's third album shines a spotlight on how versatile the singer has become.

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If You Are Patient Like a Samurai, Kazuo Koike’s ‘Lone Wolf and Cub’ Will Reward You

Dark and bleak, absorbing and fascinating, Dark Horse's reprint of this massive samurai manga classic deserves your time.

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12 May 2016 // 2:20 AM

A Giant Dog: Pile

Pile, the new album from Austin's A Giant Dog, can remind us of other moments in rock music, but this is not revivalism. Instead, it reshapes those pasts into the band's own present.

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Al Scorch: Circle Round the Signs

Chicago-based and smarter than most, Al Scorch gives us a record that feels genuine, touching and wise.

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Phil Collins: 2016 Rhino Reissues (Part One)

Not all of Collins' solo material deserves reverence, but it's obvious that there are some forgotten gems in his discography, making even casual fans wonder if they truly have both sides of his story.

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Older, Wiser, Stronger: The Return of Sasha Bell and the Essex Green

A fixture on the indie pop/psych scene for years on her own and as part of the Essex Green and Ladybug Transistor, Sasha Bell was highly regarded by critics and fans. Then, she all but disappeared from music. Now, she and the Essex Green are poised for a comeback. What took so long?

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The Good Wife: Season 7, Episode 22 - “End”

The Good Wife says goodbye in perfect fashion, with happiness as that elusive, impossible-to-catch fish.

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The Blacklist: Season 3, Episode 21 - “Susan Hargrave (No. 18)”

The Blacklist re-shuffles the deck, with a new character introduced and a possible spin-off in the mix.

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Retrospeculating On ‘1976’

Lambda Literary Award finalist Megan Volpert invents a mix of memoir and cultural criticism to engage in roundabout reflection on how the year shaped both America and herself.

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The Bachelor/Bachelorette: Women Shouldn’t Have Sex/Men Shouldn’t Say I Love You

Why do we, as viewers, insist on holding contestants to the same tired, gendered double standards?

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Enterprising Women and the Femme Fatale of Film Noir

'Too Late for Tears' and 'Woman on the Run' remind us that today's financial and gender anxieties have long histories.

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11 May 2016 // 2:30 AM

Nothing: Tired of Tomorrow

With a lean run time of about 45 minutes, Tired of Tomorrow is a full-on assault, not to mention a welcome and long-awaited addition to Nothing's catalog.

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Gregory Porter: Take Me to the Alley

The jazz/soul singer serves up a record even stronger than his last, built on feeling, canny arrangements, and a spectacular voice.

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Chris Cohen: As If Apart

As If Apart isn’t that much different than his debut, 2012's Overgrown Path, though it lends an additional vivacity that enhances Cohen’s knack for compositional balance.

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11 May 2016 // 2:10 AM

ZAYN: Mind of Mine

It's not that Zayn's proving people wrong so much as he's proving himself right.

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The Object Withdraws in Obduracy: Thoughts on Richard Tuttle’s ‘The Critical Edge’

What's critical about cast-off pieces of fabric? Is Richard Tuttle's The Critical Edge merely ironic hyperbole?

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The Blacklist: Season 3, Episode 20 - “The Artax Network (No. 41)”

Hunky bad guy Tom Keen learns to swaddle, and some other crime-y stuff happens.

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Orphan Black: Season 4, Episode 4 - “From Instinct to Rational Control”

The clones may be connected in purpose, but they’re dangerously unconnected to each other.

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‘1979 Revolution: Black Friday’ Blurs the Line Between Fact and Fiction

I didn't know much about the Iranian revolution, and having played 1979 Revolution: Black Friday, I don't feel anymore informed on the matter.

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World-Building With Few Words in ‘The Transmigration of Bodies’

Yuri Herrera writes short, sparse, powerful novels about the complex violence of border zones.

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Modiano’s ‘Villa Triste’ and the Dull Flâneur

The protagonist in Patrick Modiano's Villa Triste is a monomaniacal flâneur in world shrunk to a few predictable details.

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City of Lost Dreams: The Rare Films of New York City

Exploring the depraved depths of the urban jungle, these rare films offer a longing, backward glance at a New York now long gone.

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All You Need Is ‘Love’: A Conversation With Film and Television Composer Lyle Workman

Lyle Workman discusses his self-surprising music career and how he now departs for unmapped terrain with the new Netflix series, Love.

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Death Grips: Bottomless Pit

While Bottomless Pit is slightly more subdued than Death Grips' earlier work, it's just as fantastic.

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10 May 2016 // 2:20 AM

Darq E Freaker: ADHD EP

On his new EP, Darq E Freaker melds rave, grime, trap, and hip-hop into a demented new breed of dance music.

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Trashcan Sinatras: Wild Pendulum

The beloved Scottish jangle-pop group returns with an album that plays on a surprising mesh of traditional sounds both familiar and otherwise.

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10 May 2016 // 2:10 AM

Camila Meza: Traces

Camila Meza is a guitarist and singer from Chile who puts her jazz skills and delightful, appealing voice into collection that is not watered down pop and not classic jazz. What is it? Marvelous, original, easy to love.

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‘The Good Wife’s’ Ambivalence: Saying Goodbye to a Hesitant Heroine

Alicia’s ambivalence often tips her character into anti-hero territory, but it also registers a deep discomfort with the narratives available to and limited by her role as the “good wife”.

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‘The Killing of Osama Bin Laden’ and the Importance of Truth in Democratic Governance

Pulitzer Prize-winning journalist Seymour Hersh alleges unprecedented levels of cover-up by the Obama administration over America's role in Syria and elsewhere.

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9 May 2016 // 10:00 AM

Outlander: Season 2, Episode 4 – “La Dame Blanche”

Jamie and Claire cook up a soufflé of intrigue that doesn't fall flat; it explodes.

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Life’s a Beach in Eric Rohmer’s ‘Pauline at the Beach’

This is one of Eric Rohmer's more accessible films in which humour, romance and drama go together just as easily as sun, sand and sea.

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Daredevil: Season 2, Episode 8 - “Guilty As Sin”

All manner of secrets spill out in "Guilty as Sin", forever altering the dynamics of multiple relationships.

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Radiohead: A Moon Shaped Pool

After the longest absence between studio albums in their career, Radiohead returns with yet another studio triumph.

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Share and Share Alike, If We Dare

By 2050, two-thirds of the earth's population will live in cities. How can cities be smart and equitable in managing this growth?

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Guns N’ Roses Crush Coachella to Reclaim Rock Crown

There’s a rejuvenating energy which can overcome the soul and truly make one feel 25 years younger. And then there’s the tunes. GNR wrote great songs and they continue to resonate with a timeless quality.

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Clint Mansell: High-Rise (OST)

With the eerie soundtrack to High-Rise, Clint Mansell maintains his reputation for excellence in the world of film music.

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Petra Haden and Jesse Harris: Seemed Like a Good Idea: Petra Haden Sings Jesse Harris

This is exquisite chamber rock. It is organic, free-range, artisanal pop music. If kale salad were to take on the character of jazz-inflected songwriting, it would be Seemed Like a Good Idea.

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Janiva Magness: Love Wins Again

Janiva Magness shows off a happier and freer side of herself on Love Wins Again.

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Hardcore POV: ‘Hardcore Henry’, the POV Shot, and ‘Let’s Watch’ Cinema

Is Hardcore Henry the start of something new or a repeat of failed past experiments?

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8 May 2016 // 9:00 AM

Where Have All the Mothers Gone?

Mothers must be dealt with if we are to get on with the business of growing up.

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Umphrey’s McGee Goes Full Metal Jacket in LA + Interview

Umphrey's McGee slays LA with another marathon show and guest jam with Frank Zappa bassist Arthur Barrow.

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Corsini’s Sublime ‘Summertime’ Captures All the Contours of a Love Affair

Catherine Corsini's movie delicately and intelligently explores the romance that develops between two women in France in the early '70s.

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From the War on Poverty to the War on Crime: The Making of Mass Incarceration in America

In America today, "states like California and Michigan spend more money on imprisoning young people than on educating them." How did we let this happen?

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Drawing Disaster: Comics, War and Trauma

Disaster Drawn reveals that comics may be the most useful form for witnessing war and trauma.

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6 May 2016 // 2:20 AM

Cyndi Lauper: Detour

Still just wanting to have fun, a former pop princess goes country with mixed results.

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Professor Longhair: Live in Chicago

Live in Chicago, a seven-song set recorded at the 1976 Chicago Folk Festival, is a very welcome addition to Professor Longhair's catalog.

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Kaitlyn Aurelia Smith: Ears

You can think or feel your way into narratives and “songs” that deliver messages, but in a way you’re tricking yourself into thinking there’s something solid here that you’re fully grasping.

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6 May 2016 // 2:05 AM

Sandaraa: Sandaraa

How does music of the Indus, Europe, and Central Asia mix? Surprisingly well.

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Britta Phillips Finally Steps Out on Her Own

After many years collaborating with others, the Luna bassist unveils her first-ever solo record Luck or Magic.

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‘Captain America: Civil War’: Bang, Punch, Kick, Shake Hands

Iron Man and Captain America split up the Avengers for an evenly matched and oddly friendly (sometimes witty) showdown.

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The Flash: Season 2, Episode 20 - “Rupture”

The Flash may not have his speed back yet, but this episode takes things full speed ahead.

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The Sins of the Fathers’ in ‘The Club’

Pablo Larraín's excoriating attack on the Catholic Church is hard viewing that pulls no punches.

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Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D.: Season 3, Episode 18 - “The Singularity”

The differences between the adrenaline-fueled S.H.I.E.L.D. and the cult of Hive come into stark contrast as the season winds down.

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Haroula Rose: Here the Blue River

Haroula Rose writes and sings about ways of escape on a record that doesn't offer easy answers but does give us hope.

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Socialist Solutions for America’s Problems

A growing array of America’s leading thinkers and activists have gone from critiquing the excesses of capitalism to charting the future of American socialism.

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5 May 2016 // 8:43 AM

All Saints: Red Flag

With their second comeback, All Saints have grown up. It's a welcome return with a touch of pop class.

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‘Investigating Lois Lane’ Is as Smart as, Well, Lois Lane Herself

Tim Hanley's book is a compelling read that reveals the ways in which Lois Lane has reflected cultural assumptions about gender.

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‘Expresso Bongo’ Is a 1959 Satire on the Music Industry With Contemporary Relevancy

It was a time when teenagers were old, Cliff Richard was young, and the beats were straight from the fridge, daddio!

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5 May 2016 // 2:30 AM

Drake: Views

Views is step backwards in quality, certainly, but it’s a step sideways in some ways.

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‘Paul McCartney: The Life’ Doesn’t Whitewash or Sensationalize

Philip Norman's latest biography is loaded with wonderful passages, fascinating stories and cracking humor.

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Portraiture in a Human Form: An Interview with Aesop Rock

Aesop Rock: "I think I'm always surprised at how much the musicians I meet put weight on things that aren't music."

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Josh Williams: Modern Day Man

Following a tumultuous road to recovery, Williams makes for a fine return to making country and bluegrass music.

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More Recent Features
//Mixed media
//Blogs

Hitchcock's 'Suspicion', 'I Confess' and 'The Wrong Man' Return in Blu-ray

// Short Ends and Leader

"These three films on DVD from Warner Archives showcase different facets of Alfred Hitchcock's brilliance.

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