Reviews

30 Jun 2004 // 12:00 AM

NBA Ballers

Its erasure of racism, its fetishization of an imagined black cultural aesthetic, its glorification of excessive materialism, its celebration/demonization of black athletes as focused solely on bling-bling, and its treatment of women as sexual objects of possible acquisition, are all troubling.

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30 Jun 2004 // 12:00 AM

Lightning Break

No video game has ever, or will ever, accurately reproduce the pool hall atmosphere. Not even the best of them. And Lightning Break is no different.

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30 Jun 2004 // 12:00 AM

Donkey Kong (Classic NES Series)

Nintendo has gone the purists' route with this title and has left everything at its mediocre best.

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29 Jun 2004 // 10:00 PM

	Velvet Revolver: Contraband

When deciding whether to pick Velvet Revolver’s debut CD, Contraband, off the music store rack, there is more to consider than the question of

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	This Moment in Black History: Midwesterncuttalistick

This Moment In Black History has very little to do with vignettes on Rosa Parks or the movement for racial equality. Rather, it is a

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	Lee “Scratch” Perry: 20th Century Masters (The Millennium Collection)

Dub reggae is heavy music, music with an irresistible gravitational pull. The rhythm section is more than just the genre’s backbone, it’s the

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	Dave Liebman: In a Mellow Tone

If this for the most part all-round nice CD turned out unexpectedly mellow, how come the first track, which is the title track, was part

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	Juvenile: Juve the Great: Screwed and Chopped

The first time I heard Juvenile was on “Ha”. This was probably one of the greatest hip-hop singles ever, a real blast of New Orleans

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29 Jun 2004 // 10:00 PM

	Greg Johnson: Here Comes the Caviar

Revered as a pop star in his native New Zealand, singer/songwriter/pianist/trumpeter Greg Johnson still remains something of a well-kept secret in the

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29 Jun 2004 // 10:00 PM

	I Am the World Trade Center: The Cover Up

Athens, Georgia duo I Am the World Trade Center has succeeded in the midst of tragedy to make the best album of its career. The

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	The Honorary Title: Anything Else But the Truth

Anybody with a pitch-black sense of humor can release an album with cover art featuring a blood-stained giant panda gnawing on a severed leg while

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29 Jun 2004 // 10:00 PM

	The Helio Sequence: Love and Distance

Portland-based band the Helio Sequence want their songs to be a lot of things—poppy, atmospheric, layered, complex—but most obviously, they want their sound

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Surrealist Art and Thought in the 1930s: Art, Politics and the Psyche by Steven Harris

The co-option of the movement into modern mass culture is overwhelming, a testament to its genuinely threatening force.

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So You Wanna Be a Rock & Roll Star: How I Machine-Gunned a Roomful of Record Executives and Other Tr

Slichter seems to have cleverly rewritten his material in the apparent hope that it can be used as a textbook by burgeoning young stars to slip past the Simon Cowells of the music world.

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Peace Kills: America’s Fun New Imperialism by P.J. O’Rourke

O'Rourke does more than simply visit these places, he goes out of his way to finding understanding in them, to find common ground. It's a commitment few understand and are willing to indulge in.

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29 Jun 2004 // 12:00 AM

Natasha: And Other Stories by David Bezmozgis

Bezmozgis is undeniably a promising young writer, but now, only 147 pages into his career, he could not be called the new Roth, the new Malamud, or even the new Jhumpa Lahiri.

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	The Toasters: In Retrospect: The Best of the Toasters

When the Toasters play, it’s difficult not to get up and dance. And that’s precisely the point. Ska has always been about the

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	Pan American: Quiet City

Just as Puck (whose delight at Shakespeare in Neil Gaiman’s stunning The Sandman I loosely quote here) is amazed by the capacity of art

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28 Jun 2004 // 10:00 PM

	Nina Nastasia: Dogs

Any streetwise New Yorker keeps the secrets of their fair city close to the vest. They would never tell a tourist about the stellar hot

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28 Jun 2004 // 10:00 PM

	Graig Markel: Tall Tales on Tape

Leaving a position as the primary crooner of a rock band to pursue a solo career as a “singer-songwriter” is a tricky business that only

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