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Monday, October 14 2002

The Magnetic Fields: The Charm of the Highway Strip

The challenge of confining oneself to choose a single album that is the “best” from one’s collection is an insane project. For most of


Andrea Maxand: Angel Hat

From her earlier days with the Minerals, a Seattle-based indie-pop band, Andrea Maxand continues to forge a small but slowly widening fan base. With the


Baaba Maal: Missing You (Mi Yeewnii)

Baaba Maal is one of Senegal’s two biggest musical superstars (the other is Youssou N’Dour), and the only one who sings in the


Moodroom: Hung Up on Breathing

There’s a high level of sexiness built in to Moodroom’s debut disc Hung Up on Breathing. This Washington DC band has what it


Luna: Close Cover Before Striking

Luna is to indie rock what Hal Hartley is to indie filmmaking: well established but no sellout, distinctive but not repetitive, mannered but heartwrenching. Definitely


Future Bible Heroes: Eternal Youth

Despite what you may think, Future Bible Heroes are not ultramodern evangelists sent to save us from the vileness of modern society. Rather, they are


Friday, October 11 2002

Dorothy Parker’s Elbow: Tattoos on Writers, Writers on Tattoos Edited by Kim Addonizio and Cheryl D

Everybody, inked or not, has an opinion of tattooing, whether it's viewed with fear, admiration, loathing, or 21st century cynicism.


Thursday, October 10 2002

Various Artists: Telarc Jazz—Celebrating 25 Years

There was once, many years ago, a television program hosted by Oscar Peterson. It was all rather well heeled and respectable and was thought by


Various Artists: The Rough Guide to the Music of the Appalachians

As the liner notes to The Rough Guide freely admit, the Appalachians stretch across a full eighteen states along the Eastern United States. That’s


Tahiti 80: Wallpaper for the Soul

The new record from France-based pop quartet Tahiti 80 begs the question: how long should good pop stay with us? The gravity of some good pop


Snowglobe: Our Land Brains

If there’s a difference between being musically obtuse and being psychedelic, it’s to be found in bands like Snowglobe. Rather than being quirky


Jack Logan & Bob Kimbell: Woodshedding

Inexplicably, sometimes the collaborative sum is far greater than the respective parts. No disrespect intended to the solo efforts of Jack Logan or to those


The Lucksmiths: Where Were We?

If there was ever a competition for “world’s most charming indie band”, Australia’s Lucksmiths would win it hands down. In a live setting,


Peter Gabriel: Up

Peter Gabriel is, to put it mildly, a mercurial artist. The guy who co-founded the prog-rock juggernaut Genesis when he was a teenager is now


The Blasters: Trouble Bound

It starts with the audience, the way it always did with the Blasters; they can still be caught live every once in a while, with


Black Heart Procession: Amore Del Tropico

Fans of the Black Heart Procession’s usually downtempo, understated explorations of heartache and loss might stumble over Amore Del Tropico‘s first song, “Tropics


The Meaning of Life? Ask the Mole-Rat in ‘Fast, Cheap & Out of Control’

Ask the mole rat about the egomaniacal pursuit of what some in the military call 'command and control'.


The Nose: A Profile of Sex, Beauty, and Survival by Gabrielle Glaser

Just as we have overworked our ears to the point that we are nearly deaf and subjected our eyes to all sorts of visual clutter, we have overworked our noses to the point that our noses hardly know what to tell us.


Mr. Strangelove: A Biography of Peter Sellers by Ed Sikov

Sikov's book may be the most painful celebrity bio I've read since Albert Goldman's 'Elvis' (the similarities between the two men's lives are startling)...


The sting of the word was undercut, however, by the humorous voices Rushdie used to emulate his characters, obliging the audience to consider the dialogue and the many ways that the word can act as a political fulcrum in American society.


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