Music

Post Honeymoon: Post Honeymoon

Post Honeymoon's debut of retro goth club music isn't the disc you'll break out at your next party -- unless that party involves a casket.


Post Honeymoon

Post Honeymoon

US Release: 2009-06-09
UK Release: Available as import
Label: Two Thumbs Down
Amazon
iTunes

Make no mistake about it, Post Honeymoon's self-titled debut album isn't the disc you'll break out at your next party -- unless that party involves a casket. The Chicago-based husband-and-wife duo creates a distinct sound full of lo-fi, fuzzed-out, buzzed-out, rather retro goth club music. Vocally, Rachel Shindelman sounds like Debbie Harry if she spent her summers with the Addams Family, listening to nothing but old Siouxsie albums and taking harpsichord lessons from Lurch. Her husband, Nick Kraska, provides contributions felt by way of Post Honeymoon's rhythm section, playing and programming drums alongside his prominent bass on tracks like "The Night Before".

At its best, Post Honeymoon's compositions are impressive, particularly when you pause to consider that the band's booming sound is attributed to two members. The contrasting, in-the-round vocals on "First-World Problems", with Shindelman on lead and Kraska on back-up vocals, lends something special and unique to the track. At its worst, the duo takes too long to get to the nitty gritty of a song. "Dirge" leads with slow, solemn drum beats, but before things get boring, the pipe organ and kick drum mercifully bust in, putting the "fun" in "funeral" -- or at least as much fun as Post Honeymoon is capable of having. Other tracks like "Night Guard" and "Little Messes" also invoke mixed feelings: On one hand, it's an unusual throwback to old school goth club music. On the other, this retro feel comes across as somewhat cliché -- making the listener wonder if there is some tongue-in-cheek joke he or she is not being let in on.

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To be a migrant worker in America is to relearn the basic skills of living. Imagine doing that in your 60s and 70s, when you thought you'd be retired.


Nomadland: Surviving America in the Twenty-First Century

Publisher: W. W. Norton
Author: Jessica Bruder
Publication date: 2017-09
Amazon

There's been much hand-wringing over the state of the American economy in recent years. After the 2008 financial crisis upended middle-class families, we now live with regular media reports of recovery and growth -- as well as rising inequality and decreased social mobility. We ponder what kind of future we're creating for our children, while generally failing to consider who has already fallen between the gaps.

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TV

Inane Political Discourse, or, Alan Partridge's Parody Politics

Publicity photo of Steve Coogan courtesy of Sky Consumer Comms

That the political class now finds itself relegated to accidental Alan Partridge territory along the with rest of the twits and twats that comprise English popular culture is meaningful, to say the least.

"I evolve, I don't…revolve."
-- Alan Partridge

Alan Partridge began as a gleeful media parody in the early '90s but thanks to Brexit he has evolved into a political one. In print and online, the hopelessly awkward radio DJ from Norwich, England, is used as an emblem for incompetent leadership and code word for inane political discourse.

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The show is called Crazy Ex-Girlfriend largely because it spends time dismantling the structure that finds it easier to write women off as "crazy" than to offer them help or understanding.

In the latest episode of Crazy Ex-Girlfriend, the CW networks' highly acclaimed musical drama, the shows protagonist, Rebecca Bunch (Rachel Bloom), is at an all time low. Within the course of five episodes she has been left at the altar, cruelly lashed out at her friends, abandoned a promising new relationship, walked out of her job, had her murky mental health history exposed, slept with her ex boyfriend's ill father, and been forced to retreat to her notoriously prickly mother's (Tovah Feldshuh) uncaring guardianship. It's to the show's credit that none of this feels remotely ridiculous or emotionally manipulative.

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Here comes another Kompakt Pop Ambient collection to make life just a little more bearable.

Another (extremely rough) year has come and gone, which means that the German electronic music label Kompakt gets to roll out their annual Total and Pop Ambient compilations for us all.

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Winner of the 2017 Ameripolitan Music Award for Best Rockabilly Female stakes her claim with her band on accomplished new set.

Lara Hope & The Ark-Tones

Love You To Life

Label: Self-released
Release Date: 2017-08-11
Amazon
iTunes

Lara Hope and her band of roots rockin' country and rockabilly rabble rousers in the Ark-Tones have been the not so best kept secret of the Hudson Valley, New York music scene for awhile now.

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