Columns

Monday, February 25 2008

The Best of the Basket Cases: Round 1

Deep down, in spite of all the bad music I have to plow through, I'm still that 17-year-old kid that can't believe he's getting sent free CDs. I know, I know; it's a rough gig.


Sunday, February 24 2008

Missing Places I’ve Never Been: A Love Letter to Alex Ross

The appeal, the madness of Ross' painting is that it makes a scene involving a fight between spandex-clad do-gooders seem almost as important as Rockwell's depiction of the first step to end racial segregation.


Thursday, February 21 2008

Trout Fishing in America

Richard Brautigan’s minimalist prose wove hallucinations into social commentary, pastoral meditations into cultural satire, and journalistic reports about mundane existence into nihilistic, punkish sirens.


Wednesday, February 20 2008

Every Good Boy Does Fine

Required to take a music class in high school I signed up for chorus, but the teacher offered me $50 to drop the class – and other ruminations about learning to play the piano.


Tuesday, February 19 2008

Devotion Through Music

Global spiritual traditions are being evolved by artists fusing the best of many worlds, electronic and traditional, into forms of devotion applicable to us all.


Monday, February 18 2008

American Gothic

Grant Wood's 'American Gothic' is an elegant representation of the American nightmare: the horrors and monsters that constantly lurk behind the face of normality.


Plastic Fantastic

If you’re not shocked by the idea of mounting a dead animal’s head on the wall, why should you be shocked by Body Worlds 2?


Thursday, February 14 2008

El Che & the Thriller

Rhymefest's mixtape tribute continues hip-hop's longstanding affection for the Jacksons.


Wednesday, February 13 2008

The Sins of the Sister

A director can translate a writer’s words to the screen beautifully, but he can never alter their power on the page. The book and film versions of Atonement prove this all too well.


Tuesday, February 12 2008

Songs, Swoosh-ified

The quintessential element of the digital audio revolution is the creation of the ‘random’ button, that default 'shuffle function', which renders us no longer creators of mix-tapes, but consumers of playlists.


Monday, February 11 2008

Just Let Go: An Interview with Jarboe

J2 is what happens when artists like Jarboe and Justin Broadrick meet halfway, then feed off each other.


Sunday, February 10 2008

Say It Ain’t So, Senator

Concerned that steroids will ruin baseball? Perhaps there's a greater threat to the game: Congress.


Thursday, February 7 2008

Jesus Loves Me, This I Know

A Christian nation wouldn't accept homosexuality. The big question, then, is whether America is a Christian nation.


Wednesday, February 6 2008

Discipline and Punish: The Official Functions

Like characters in some morality play, referees are greeted with boos, taunts, profanity, and, on occasion, worse.


Tuesday, February 5 2008

When Pets are Past Their Prime

Retirement homes for elderly herbivores and posthumous plans for your pet should you kick the proverbial bucket of water, first.


Monday, February 4 2008

Burning Down the House

A pack and purge process got Nishimoto to thinking about Jay Electronica, who may be the M.I.A. that hip-hop has been waiting for.


Sunday, February 3 2008

A How-to for Hillary

How we want Hillary to appear before us says a whole lot more about us than it does about her.


Thursday, January 31 2008

Creating Japan: The Truth About the Myth

Separated lovers, a hero, a villain, creepy surrogates, immortal power, the wrath of the gods, a perilous journey to hell and back, a breakneck chase, daring escapes, fortune, and an ending that will make you cry yourself to sleep.


Wednesday, January 30 2008

The Gap: Bix Beiderbecke

It's never too late to get hip to a good thing. I've finally opened my ears to '20s-era Bix Biederbecke.


Tuesday, January 29 2008

Film’s Last Taboo

Social hype has given your basic brats a media Teflon coating. Has the time finally come to make them pay?


//Mixed media
//Blogs

Authenticity Issues and the New Intimacies

// Marginal Utility

"The social-media companies have largely succeeded in persuading users of their platforms' neutrality. What we fail to see is that these new identities are no less contingent and dictated to us then the ones circumscribed by tradition; only now the constraints are imposed by for-profit companies in explicit service of gain.

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