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Monday, August 25 2014

Hohokum

The game plays like it belongs in a museum, one of those interactive displays that invites people to navigate the art rather than stare at it.


Not the Antidote You’re Looking For: “Trees #4”

What I’d hoped would happen is that Trees would be the natural antithesis to those gimmicky summer crossovers with anticlimactic events that seem to written in marketing departments.


Organized Murder and the Graphic Anthology, ‘To End All Wars’

This stark, chiaroscuro compilation promotes a humanitarian view of the First World War, as witnessed by an array of Earth's beleaguered creatures.


‘Dream Deceivers: Heavy Metal on Trial’ Examines Culpability and Belief

Metal fans will remember this story in the lore of censorship and a dark moment in the history of Judas Priest. But this film is not about the band and is all the better for it.


‘The Legend of Hell House’ Is Cerebral Horror at Its Finest

Possibly the greatest haunted house film of all time is still as impactful as ever, a fact not reflected by this Blu-ray's paltry extras.


Ariana Grande: My Everything

In trying to sound like everything else on the charts, Ariana Grande continues to have one of pop music's most distinctive voices that has very little to say.


Which Is Better, Gorgeous Writing or a Gorgeous Blonde?

In The Black-Eyed Blond, Benjamin Black provides such a satisfying incarnation of Raymond Chandler's sensibility, it's almost possible to pretend Chandler is back among the living.


Cold Specks: Neuroplasticity

With its smorgasbord of texture and tones, Neuroplasticity is a real contender for Canadian Album of the Year.


Mirel Wagner: When the Cellar Children See the Light of Day

There's a coffin-like closeness and aloneness to each and every song on Mirel Wagner's Sub Pop debut. It's a fitting feel for a record so focused on death.


Eric Clapton and Friends: The Breeze: An Appreciation of JJ Cale

It’s safe, which only gets The Breeze: An Appreciation of JJ Cale so far, but, this record will undoubtedly get a lot of people to revisit, or discover JJ Cale, which is a win in itself.


Various Artists: 1970’s Algerian Folk and Pop / 1970’s Proto-Rai Underground

Both of these compilations provide interesting ways into a time and sound all too overlooked in certain circles, at least (hopefully) until now.


Friday, August 22 2014

‘When the Game Stands Tall’: Faith-Based High School Football

It's hard to think of a scene in this movie you haven't seen in another.


Knots Untie and Tie Again in ‘Boardwalk Empire: Season Four’

If previous seasons gave us glimpses of the evil that men do, then this penultimate season of HBO's best current series gives us an extreme closeup.


Our Protagonist Is a Passenger of Clichés in ‘If I Stay’

This film urges you to believe that the protagonist is as special as anyone at the center of a YA saga, which is to say, so very special.


What a Quart of Whiskey Might Assuage, but Never Alleviate

Guitar music gave John Fahey a bridge to the subconscious, and his subconscious evidently was a scary realm.


Disney’s ‘Tarzan’ Is a Visual Thrill Ride

Disney’s Tarzan is more than the last film in the “Disney Renaissance”; it’s also the best Tarzan film ever made.


Jenny Hval and Susanna: Meshes of Voice

With Meshes of Voice, Norwegians Jenny Hval and Susanna Wallumrød come together to craft an avant garde masterpiece.


Literature: Chorus

This is a huge step forward for the band, while preserving all of the most attractive qualities of the debut.


Richard Thompson: Acoustic Classics

Folk troubadour Richard Thompson commits an intimate solo studio performance of his classics to tape, highlighting both his skills as a guitarist and exceptional songwriter.


Bishop Allen: Lights Out

At their best, Bishop Allen develop a time and a place through memorable hooks and high craft, but they just can't sustain it for the whole album.


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