Columns

Thursday, November 2 2006

From the Mop-Top to the Walrus: Some Funny Sides of the Beatles

Manifested in child-centered humor, the Beatles offered candy for the kids, tapped into the regressive escapist instincts of the arrested adolescents of the hippy subculture, and offered "seemingly" unthreatening fare for adults.


Wednesday, November 1 2006

A Reluctant ‘Jazz’ Hero: An Interview with Trumpeter, Composer, and Arranger Steven Bernstein

The prolific trumpeter talks shirking musical definitions, finding challenging middle ground between 'fake jazz' and 'real musicianship', touring with They Might Be Giants, and turning down Jay-Z.


Tuesday, October 31 2006

Salvador’s One-Note Music Scene

In Brazil's third-largest city, thanks to the curse of Carnival, there is only one sound to be found.


Monday, October 30 2006

Vamping It Up

From folklore to fright icon, a certain naughty neckbiter remains one of literature -- and film's -- most fascinating fear factors.


Sunday, October 29 2006

Kids’ TV: A Vast Stygian Wasteland

Kinder, gentler, and thoroughly creepy, today’s children’s television is no match for the classics.


Friday, October 27 2006

Gay and Gray

Due to AIDS and homophobic violence, many LGBT souls who fought so hard for the things we take for granted today never expected to reach old age... but they have.


Thursday, October 26 2006

Face-Painters, Cheese Heads, and Other Revolutionaries

Fans who show up sporting a wedge of plastic cheese on their heads, or wearing nothing but a barrel and suspenders, or dousing themselves in purple paint are really just the modern-day, class-defying equivalents of flatulent giants, cross-dressing jesters, and juggling scullery maids of the Renaissance.


Wednesday, October 25 2006

Sailing Rough Waters

Taiwan's legendary The Clippers are smart, edgy, and very adaptable. But when charting beyond their own sea, their sound is not always as well received as maybe it should be.


Tuesday, October 24 2006

Food of the Clods

As food becomes more and more sophisticated, today's home cook is faced with a daunting dining task. Too bad Laban and Larry aren't around to bring simplicity back to supper.


Monday, October 23 2006

Dropping the Bombshell

Notes on the (hair) color code, from one of those (you know), blondes.


Thursday, October 19 2006

Gay TV:  Making Same-Sex Marriage Safe for America

At the same time that gay TV is shaping the culture, the culture is also shaping gay TV, containing it and restricting it from going "too far".


Wednesday, October 18 2006

Reel Australia

Hummel used to dread, simply dread, Australian-made films. But a number of recently discovered intelligent, evocative films have her singing her creative countrymen's praises. Here are some movies you shouldn't miss.


Monday, October 16 2006

The Great Wait for Oscar Bait

If there's anything to be learned from a review of the year so far, it's that 2006 will either go down as a terrible movie year or a tremendously back-loaded one.


Friday, October 13 2006

The Profound Consolation: The Use of Bach’s Music in the Films of Ingmar Bergman (Part 1)

In Bergman's films, Bach's music functions to give access to a rarified atmosphere of revelation and emotional depth; it reveals something previously inaccessible within a character.


Thursday, October 12 2006

Cooking Up a Fuss

The arrival of the celebrity TV chef is parallel to the rise of the techno DJ: both feed upon our hedonistic fin-de-siècle desires. The rave scene gave us mass love-ins driven by repetitive beats and illicit substances. The chefs do it by teaching us how to knock up cordon bleu dishes in only 20 minutes between the moment we get home from work and the moment we head out again to get blotto.


Wednesday, October 11 2006

Walking Away From It All: The New Great American Fantasy

Walking away from it all to pursue a quieter, less complicated life is an oft-recurring theme in American culture, from Henry David Thoreau's 1854 Walden to the 1932 Scarface and countless other sagas of the underworld – right up to the present day's Dave Chappelle and Aaron McGruder.


Tuesday, October 10 2006

Fascist, Fascist, Who’s A Fascist?

The term "fascism" is being appropriated, inappropriately, by a range of political interests in the US – including the Republican Party.


Monday, October 9 2006

Virtual Utopia

Utopias we can recognize as such are doomed to failure, forever resigned to fantasy. Is online universe Second Life such a place, where one experiments harmlessly with fantasy, or is it an organic necessity, an inevitable outgrowth of an intolerable present?


Friday, October 6 2006

Or Are You Just Glad to See Me?

This month, our cinematic classicist looks at the human love of firepower, and how one forgotten film noir in particular encapsulated everything good and bad, appealing and appauling, about this obsession with guns.


Thursday, October 5 2006

Blind Guardian’s Twisted Myths

For Hansi Kürsch, lead singer of Germany's Blind Guardian, there's no Justin Hawkins flash, no DragonForce pub chants, no hipster-pandering irony. If he's going to sing about faeries and orcs, he's going to do so and mean every damned outlandish lyric.


//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.

READ the article