Columns

Tuesday, June 24 2014

(The Limits of) Football, Samba, and Commonality

The 2014 FIFA World Cup theme song highlights one of the worst trends in a global society: culture boiled down to a sort of triumphant universal human-ness.


Monday, June 23 2014

Bring Back the Beat! What’s Up with Hip-Hop Reissues?

The record industry makes huge efforts to reissue rock CDs, but nowhere near as much effort for hip-hop CDs.


Friday, June 20 2014

The Fascination with Fundamentalism in Hardcore Punk

Some bands echoed the Dead Kennedys' anti-Moral Majority messages; others embodied right-wing religion.


Thursday, June 19 2014

A Wheel Inside a Wheel: Gillian Welch’s ‘Time (The Revelator)’

Time (The Revelator) conjures a hazy post-millennial American dream of disappointment and ambition that's disturbed by what it sees and hears.


Wednesday, June 18 2014

Talent Will Out: Singer-Songwriter Nicky Schrire on Making It in New York

South African jazz singer Nicky Schrire has made three tremendous records, but she isn't well known. That ought to change.


Tuesday, June 17 2014

In Defense Of ... Ann Hornaday, No Matter What Judd Apatow and Seth Rogen Say

The Washington Post film critic wasn't wrong in wondering aloud about the impact Hollywood can have on the typical young male.


Monday, June 16 2014

The Rise Fall and Rise of Marvel Comics on Film Part 3: Our Universe(s) at War

Suddenly, movies from all walks of the Marvel Universe began to rage against the big screen with three distinct universes vying for control of box office gold.


Friday, June 13 2014

The Future of Work Looks Like an Agency-Free Hole That Goes Nowhere

A recent Planet Money episode about worker analytics provokes two things: a memory of a troubling past, and troubling vision of the future of work.


Thursday, June 12 2014

Benighted by Beauty: The Legacy of Opeth’s ‘Still Life’

Still Life's narrative borders on Shakespearean levels of romantic tragedy and social commentary, making it the most poetic and philosophical in Opeth’s catalogue.


Wednesday, June 11 2014

Ai Weiwei on Truth, Beauty and Futility

Truths and beauties grapple throughout According to What?, a retrospective of Chinese dissident artist Ai Weiwei currently on display at the Brooklyn Museum of Art.


Eve Babitz, with Los Angeles at Her Feet

As the cynosure of the counterculture, Eve Babitz knew everybody worth knowing; slept with everybody worth sleeping with and better still, made herself felt in every encounter.


Tuesday, June 10 2014

Pronounced Dead: The Art of Cultural Assassination

Two critical catfights are claiming to have buried art-forms which have shaped our civilisation for decades and centuries apiece. Are they entitled to do that?


Monday, June 9 2014

The Rise Fall and Rise of Marvel Comics on Film Part 2: The Road Out of Development Hell

The story is far from over for The Fantastic Four and Spider-Man, but what of the Marvel Cinematic Universe? What of the incredible saga of all of those also-ran comic book films?


Friday, June 6 2014

Invisible Factory Billionaire: The Minting of a New Post-Colonial Literary Darling Tash Aw

With the publication of his third novel, Tash Aw's celebrity status is now assured. But do the books equal the hype?


Thursday, June 5 2014

‘Anchorman’s’ Ron Burgundy: The Man, The Myth, the Media

Anchorman 2 is bigger, bolder, brasher and more bizarre than its antecedent, but it also gives a pertinent critique of the medium it has chosen to satirise.


Wednesday, June 4 2014

David Dondero: A Poet of Vehicles

Living out of step fits right in with Dondero's songs of tough and kindhearted outcasts, eccentrics and survivors who live out of sight, but in plain sight.


Tuesday, June 3 2014

In Defense Of ... Calling It a Finalé Even Though It’s Not Over

With Mad Men now wrapped up until spring 2015, it's time we stop resisting the trend of this new television practice. It ain't over, but it's still a finalé.


Monday, June 2 2014

The Rise Fall and Rise of Marvel Comics on Film Part 1: Origins and Eternities

Marvel Comics rules the box office today (three films based on Marvel Comics occupied the top 10 in May 2014 alone), but getting there was a long, hard, slow road.


Friday, May 30 2014

Carl Van Vechten, America’s First White Negro

What was Van Vechten really writing about during the Harlem Renaissance; black culture as it existed in its own right, or how he viewed it through his own complicated prism?


Thursday, May 29 2014

What Embers Still Burn in the Beautiful Ruins of Riot Grrrls Past?

Riot grrrls wrote, recorded and produced a wealth of cultural objects. They left trails of scribbles, screams and lipstick traces in MP3 blogs and online archives, awaiting release.


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