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7 Jun 2016 // 2:15 AM

Throws: Throws

Mike Lindsay and Sam Genders of Tuung and the Accidentals team up for their new like-minded side project, Throws.

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6 Jun 2016 // 12:00 PM

Thunderbirds Are Go: Season 1

The new version of Thunderbirds Are Go retains the charm and positive message of the original.

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Politics Is War in ‘All the Way’

All the Way showcases the ways in which LBJ’s fight to pass the Civil Rights Act resonates with the current political climate.

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Outlander: Season 2, Episode 8 - “The Fox’s Lair”

A return to Scotland offers a temporary peace, before things really kick off.

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Who’s the Real Winner in ‘Superman vs Muhammad Ali’?

Superman is earnest and virtuous; he is the world's finest. Ali's braggadocio and poetry and strength of character are on display; he is the greatest.

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Provocative and Pioneering: ‘Deadpool’ Sets the Stage for a New Kind of Hero

Minor shortcomings are easily overlooked because of this landmark film's sharp wit, clever meta-commentary, and undeniable humor.

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Daredevil: Season 2, Episode 12 - “The Dark at the End of the Tunnel”

This season's penultimate episode relies too heavily on nonsensical plot twists without any heart.

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‘Layers of Fear’ Paints by the Numbers

Layers of Fear makes a strong case that games need an editor.

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Fargo’s Second Season Packs Rare Sophomore Punch

Absurdity, philosophy, moral panic and dark comedy all prevail in the second season of Fargo.

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Are All Drummers Dimwitted and Crazy?

British music journalist Tony Barrell tries to get timekeepers some props. Or at least figure out why Tommy Lee has that Mighty Mouse tattoo.

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Marrow of Their Spirits: A Reflection on Agalloch

Agalloch regularly melded metaphysical ponderings into its light-and-dark sonic tapestries, yielding a catalog that’s as enticing intellectually as it is musically.

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Paul Simon: Stranger to Stranger

God, wristbands and swear words: Paul Simon's latest reminds us why he's so essential.

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Big Thief: Masterpiece

Led by Adrianne Lenker's mellifluous and reflective tone, the Brooklyn quartet's story-songs find value in humanist thought.

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Adult Jazz: Earrings Off!

The experimental British quartet's sophomore effort is sort of like Radiohead on laughing gas. This is mostly a good thing.

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‘The Naked Island’ and the Centrality of Work to Existence

Perhaps the greatest achievement of The Naked Island is its ability to employ the form of images as a means of transcending their objective content.

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Lack of Afro: Hello Baby

Technically, Hello Baby is a soul album, but in actuality it’s the furthest thing from it.

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The 1975: I Like It When You Sleep, For You Are So Beautiful Yet So Unaware of It

Colored with neon synthesizers and a widescreen John Hughes-esque aesthetic, The 1975's second album is a studied indulgence in '80s melodrama.

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Revisiting ‘The X-Files’: Despite the Reboot’s Flaws, Its Message Still Resonates

It's clear that laziness and short memories hold some responsibility for the reboot's critical backlash.

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Wes Montgomery: One Night in Indy

Previously unknown and unreleased live recording of Wes Montgomery with the Eddie Higgins Trio provides a fine view of both artists in their prime.

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Orphan Black: Season 4, Episode 7 - “The Antisocialism of Sex”

Three episodes to go and endless possibilities for how the season will end; the only sure thing's that Orphan Black is having an excellent season.

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‘The Fits’ Offers a Brilliant, New, and Sensory Experience

The Fits offers a new experience, one that helps you to perceive nuances of sight and sound.

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Faintly Androgynous and Pathologically Disturbed

Montgomery Clift and Clifton Webb were both gay actors. One embraced his sexuality, while the other denied it, which made a huge difference in how their careers played out.

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3 Jun 2016 // 9:18 AM

Winterpills: Love Songs

Winterpills round out their sound while offering a melancholic monologue on love.

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3 Jun 2016 // 9:06 AM

WRONG: WRONG

If you like heavy riffs and a sound that bridges hardcore and thrash, then WRONG is a good listen. If not, there won't be much to hang onto here.

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Yoshi Wada: Off the Wall

With Off the Wall, Yoshi Wada solidifies himself as one of the most interesting ambient artists of his day.

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The Claypool Lennon Delirium: Monolith of Phobos

Les Claypool and Sean Lennon come together to do their best early ‘70s prog homage. The results are exactly what you’d expect based on the preceding statement.

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Whitney: Light Upon the Lake

Whitney’s Light Upon the Lake is a taut debut, which sparkles throughout with sunny melody tempered by just the right amount of angst.

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Capable of Anything: An Interview with Ben Folds

"I think most of the gold was mined out of [rock music] probably in the '60s -- and then I think since then you're just mining for dust now."

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Bloodline: Season 2, Episode 1 - “Part 14”

Black sheep Danny Rayburn continues to cast a long, dark shadow in episode one of Netflix's Florida Keys family drama.

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‘X-men: Apocalypse’ Makes for a Strong and Fit Finalé

The evolution of superhero movies helps put X-men at the top of the food chain.

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Island Life: Alexi Kaye Campbell’s ‘Sunset at the Villa Thalia’, National Theatre

Personal and political tensions surface between two couples in Alexi Kaye Campbell’s absorbing Skiathos-set play at the National Theatre.

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Ross Posnock Explores Why Artists so Frequently Renounce the Tenets of Their Art

Renunciation is a richly textured and highly original exploration of the artistic impulse.

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Kid Congo and the Pink Monkey Birds: La Araña Es La Vida

Kid Congo comes back with a record filled with hot lickin' and cool pickin'. It's rock 'n' roll through and through, and if it doesn't reinvent the album it'll certainly move you to catch a live show.

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Steven Universe: Season 3, Episode 3 - “Same Old World”

How does an animated show deal with the reality of being a victim of war or a refugee? Of depression and PTSD? Through this kind of episode.

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2 Jun 2016 // 9:45 AM

Cannes 2016: ‘The Salesman’ + ‘Elle’

These two films suggest possible ways for women's self-expression in the midst of oppression.

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Whatever the Future May Hold, Paper Has a Rich History

The Paper Trail makes the case that paper is one of history's most revolutionary technologies even as its contemporary importance fades.

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Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D.: Season 3, Episode 21 / 22 - “Absolution”/“Ascension”

Daisy Johnson's three-season journey from hacker to agent to outcast shows that Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. has always been her story.

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‘Undertale’ and Immanuel Kant: Ethics in Video Games

Undertale invokes (consciously or not) the ethics of Immanuel Kant, and in doing so, it ushers in a new era of video games as art.

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Pantha du Prince: The Triad

Pantha du Prince tests the limits of ambient dance music on his first album in six years.

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Steve Gunn: Eyes on the Lines

On his latest solo release, Steve Gunn creates a soundtrack for the wandering soul.

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The Melvins: Basses Loaded

With nutty titles, booming guitars, and an ex-Nirvana member playing the accordion, Basses Loaded is just business as usual for the Melvins, who continue to deliver.

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On My Own Planet: An Interview With Musical Chameleon Petra Haden

Haden has played with the Decemberists, Iggy Pop, Paul Motian, and others. The ubiquitous, multi-talented artist shares her ideas on, well, almost everything.

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Documentary ‘Presenting Princess Shaw’ Presents Truths and Fictions

The documentary's remix of the protagonists experiences shapes a trajectory, invites identification with her struggle, presents her as mesmeric, self-aware.

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Kathryn Harrison and the Relative Safely of Middle Age

Kathryn Harrison's middle-aged transgressions in True Crimes are less egregious than those of youth. And that's a good thing.

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The Fourth Season of ‘Inside Amy Schumer’ Turns Inward at a Cost

As Trainwreck and Inside Amy Schumer's third season demonstrated, Schumer’s comedy's most potent when it explores the stakes of what it skewers.

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One Batch, Two Batches of Violence in ‘Punisher #1’

This comic sports the proper amounts of violence and brutality to be a warm return to form for any reader fond of the famous Garth Ennis or Jason Aaron MAX runs.

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Almut Kühne / Gebhard Ullmann / Achim Kaufmann: Marbrakeys / Geode

Restless reed musician Gebhard Ullmann offers up two albums that reflect his never-ending search for new sounds and contexts.

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Fear the Walking Dead: Season 2, Episode 7 - “Shiva”

It turns out refuge is not all it's cracked up to be; a massive explosion sends our band of survivors on their own ways.

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The Heavy: Hurt and the Merciless

The Heavy remain consistent with their latest LP, Hurt and the Merciless, introducing new lyrical layers to maintain a sense of innovation.

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1 Jun 2016 // 9:00 AM

Highasakite: Camp Echo

Thanks to Ingrid Håvik's versatile and charmingly eccentric voice, Highasakite's Camp Echo stands apart from the glut of other indie synth-rock records vying for attention

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Andre Williams: I Wanna Go Back to Detroit City

Motor City icon and veritable musical institution Andre Williams returns with a tough, cocksure love letter to his beloved city.

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Minor Victories: Minor Victories

The atmospheric British rock super group, which began as an idea for an experimental noise EP, manages to outweigh the heft of potential behind it.

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The Eclectic Hotpot That Is Lisa Hanawalt’s ‘Hot Dog Taste Test’

Lisa Hanawalt offers a smorgasbord of foodie art and humor to suit every taste.

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“Come With Us, Go Where We Go”: A Chat with Caravan Palace’s Hugues Payen

Three albums and one decade into its career, Caravan Palace continues to wow audiences in its native France and abroad. The secret? "We have a beautiful singer who dances very well," says co-founder Hugues Payen.

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1 Jun 2016 // 7:31 AM

Water Baby: A Eulogy for Our Departed Prince

More than a genius, not simply an enigma, to understand and appreciate Prince one must let go of binary sexuality and appreciate the liquidity and flow of his vision and identity.

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Sexing Up Brecht: The National Theatre’s New Version of ‘The Threepenny Opera’

Some fine performances bring Brechtian bite to Rufus Norris’s otherwise disappointing new production of The Threepenny Opera.

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31 May 2016 // 11:00 AM

Empire: Season 2, Part 2

If Empirestretches audience goodwill a little too far, perhaps it can be forgiven; whatever its flaws, it never fails to entertain.

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Outlander: Season 2, Episode 7 - “Faith”

In the wake of more than one devastating loss, Jamie and Claire's faith in each other, and their ability to change the future, is severely shaken.

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The Buying of the Light: An Eerie Debut on Consumption and Corporeality

Kleeman's You Too Can Have a Body Like Mine is a powerfully feminine and disturbingly organic contribution to the literature of consumerism.

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Once Upon a Time: Episodes 22/23 - “Only You”/“An Untold Story”

Henry sets out to destroy all magic, but finds that's not so easy.

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31 May 2016 // 8:53 AM

White Lung: Paradise

On Paradise, the change is not just one of production and fidelity. It's also one of attitude and perspective, and when this album runs at full throttle, it heads down some lesser-traveled roads through rock music.

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‘Of Men and War’: ‘I Still Can’t Get Used to the Way I Am’

This documentary respectfully observes the hard work of recovery, as Iraq and Afghanistan war veterans pursue their traumatic memories in order to live with them.

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Steven Universe: Season 3, Episode 2 - “Gem Drill”

On its own, "Gem Drill" doesn't fail to charm; as a resolution to the series' long-running "Cluster arc", it's somewhat underwhelming.

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31 May 2016 // 8:14 AM

Eric Clapton: I Still Do

For a potential end, Clapton brings it back to the start.

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Gold Panda: Good Luck and Do Your Best

Gold Panda turns a trip to Japan into a synaesthetic sensory experience in his latest LP.

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Composer Matthew Margeson Goes Retro to Score ‘Eddie the Eagle’

The composer for the new underdog sports movie reveals how he turned back the clock to fit his score within the neon-tinted confines of the film's time period.

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31 May 2016 // 7:44 AM

Fool’s Gold: An Interview with Jameszoo

Working with jazz legends. Building a chicken coop in your house. Signing to Flying Lotus' record label. All in a day's work for Jameszoo.

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Personal Morality, Not Political Ideology: ‘Doctor Who’ and the Cold War

How does a 2,000-year-old (give or take a few centuries) Gallifreyan Time Lord engage with the very human politics of mid-20th century class war?

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The Flash: Season 2, Episode 23 - “The Race of His Life”

The sophomore season of The Flash ends with a look forward and a look back.

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Art Decadence in ‘L’inhumaine’

Smart, sharp and fashionably ahead of its time, L’inhumaine hangs in an aesthetic balance between the cerebral pretensions of a popular literary novel and the continental-chic of a glamour magazine.

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‘The Noise of Time’ Considers the Artist’s Place in an Oppressive State

In this fictional account of composer Dmitri Shostakovich, Barnes reveals the inner conflicts of a man trying to live by a set of principles in a shfting time and place.

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The Lowest Pair: Uncertain As It Is Uneven / Fern Girl and Ice Man

Two simultaneously released albums serve notice that the Lowest Pair are among the leading new lights in Americana.

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The Muffs: Blonder and Blonder (Reissue)

The Muffs would-be commercial breakthrough that never was retains its sweetness, power, and fun 21 years later. This reissue isn't a significant upgrade, however.

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Leyla McCalla: A Day for the Hunter, A Day for the Prey

As enjoyable as her music is at a baseline level, McCalla embraces so much more in terms of her passion for the complex history of the Haitian people.

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Red Krayola with Art & Language: Baby and Child Care

Long shelved collection of parental advice from Dr. Spock set to art funk rhythms and new wave sheen is finally given the release it deserves.

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Professor Longhair: Live In Chicago (take 2)

Archival live performance captured at the 1976 Chicago Folk Festival offers a fine reminder of the genius of Professor Longhair.

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Gods, Justice, Secrets, and Spectacles in ‘Justice League #50’

The heaviest hitters of the DC Universe come together in a divine spectacle.

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‘X-Men: Apocalypse’: Again With the End of the World

You've seen the end of the world, you've seen it more than once. It's loud and it's large. And it's not new.

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Beckinsale Beguile’s in Stillman’s Nearly Perfect Period Piece, ‘Love & Friendship’

Whit Stillman's Love & Friendship extracts enchantment from the pages of a little known posthumously published Jane Austen novel.

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Daredevil: Season 2, Episode 11 - “.380”

Daredevil’s main characters are at a crossroads, and it may just be the villains who persuade our heroes to do good.

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Cannes 2016: The Verdict of ‘The Nine-Headed Beast’ (and the Verdict on the Verdict)

Cannes 2016 was distinguished by a range of strong films, but the decisions of this year’s Competition jury felt more politically than artistically motivated.

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The Blacklist: Season 3, Episode 23 - “Alexander Kirk (No. 14): Conclusion”

The Blacklist's season-ending surprise is more The Happening and less The Sixth Sense. Not a good thing!

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‘The Game Worlds of Jason Rohrer’ Is an Insightful Look at the Work of a Key Voice in Gaming

This book contextualizes the merit of Rohrer's work as artful explorations beyond the designer's own point of view.

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Making Movies With Your Friends: An Interview With Director Joe Dante

Joe Dante wears his love of the movie industry on his sleeve, and he's quick to share his decades worth of insights with PopMatters.

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Grief and Guilt in a Jewish Family

This postwar Jewish family is splintered by a child's death in Elizabeth Poliner's As Close to Us As Breathing

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Kristin Kontrol: X-Communicate

As Kristin Kontrol, Kristin Welchez has brilliantly shown that her brand of mischief is as complex as it is loving. Trouble is still her name.

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Car Seat Headrest: Teens of Denial

Teens of Denial is a gateway drug for today's Millennials to discover those who have come before.

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26 May 2016 // 2:15 AM

Misha: All We Will Become

Though there's a lot to overlook, Misha's new album is a very genuine example of pop.

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Blaak Heat: Shifting Mirrors

On Shifting Mirrors, Blaak Heat makes music that draws from a variety of worldly sources, prizing musical innovation as much as sheer heaviness.

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Jane Monheit: The Songbook Sessions - Ella Fitzgerald

Jane Monheit, known for her retro style and interpretation of Ella Fitzgerald, works with trumpeter and producer Nicholas Payton to create a dramatically up-to-date, occasionally truly daring take on Ella.

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26 May 2016 // 2:00 AM

Consider the Troll

The pressing question isn't so much what a troll is and how he came to be, but what to do when confronted with a troll.

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Preacher: Season 1, Episode 1 - “Pilot”

Preacher's pilot may have more moving parts than most pilots these days, but it's supremely confident in its own specific vision.

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Fear the Walking Dead: Season 2, Episode 6 - “Sicut Cervus”

The survivors at last reach a place of relative safety in Mexico; how safe remains an open question.

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Steven Universe: Season 3, Episode 1 - “Super Watermelon Island”

Despite lacking much narrative progression, "Super Watermelon Island" still has a lot of fun, beauty, and subtlety for the open-minded viewer.

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Viet Thanh Nguyen Is a Lucid and Robust Voice for the Forgotten

Nothing Ever Dies is a timely meditation on the power of memory as an implement and a consequence of war.

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‘The Lonely City’ Makes a Case for Empathy and Kindness

Olivia Laing mixes art criticism and memoir; effectively synthesizing these two modes of writing so that the personal elevates the analysis, with a sizable emotional heft.

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A Poetic Filament: An Interview with Writer and Musician Azeem

What you hear in Azeem's music is bluster and anger, a rage of words and sound. But at the very core of his sonic tirade is the enveloping silence of anagogic contemplation.

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Chance the Rapper: Coloring Book

On his third solo mixtape, Chicago’s Chance the Rapper preaches the gospel of community.

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Meghan Trainor: Thank You (Deluxe Edition)

Thank You shows musical growth for Trainor while simultaneously moving her closer to the more homogenous sound of mainstream pop.

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25 May 2016 // 2:15 AM

Cate Le Bon: Crab Day

Cate Le Bon shows the true extent of her powerfully versatile creative voice on Crab Day.

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More Recent Features
//Mixed media
//Blogs

It's Not Easy Being Yellow

// Moving Pixels

"In which we consider the challenges of and the reasons for making the “wrong” color choice in Pokemon Go.

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