Music

Haleek Maul - "Lobo" (stream)

Over a massive Forest Swords production, Barbadian/NYC rapper Haleek Maul spits typically nasty, lightless bars that bode well for whatever release this ends up on.

The recently resurfaced, always showstopping English producer Forest Swords turned in a huge, dubbed-out, ferocious lurker of a beat that trumps anything from 2012's Haleek Maul/Supreme Cuts collaborative LP, the superb Chrome Lips, so Maul naturally stepped his game up in response. He offers to be "the cure for your myopia," boasts that he "black[s] out on these vixens like [he's] livin' in ellipses," and while "ashes to ashes / you actin' / get blasted" doesn't read as exceptional on paper, it certainly sounds mean in a hook. The beat remains the undeniable star here, but Maul sounds so natural over it that an extended collab à la Chrome Lips seems only natural at this point.

Director Spotlight: Alfred Hitchcock

Alfred Hitchcock helped to create the modern horror genre, the modern thriller, and the modern black comedy. He changed film, even as he was inventing new ways to approach it. Stay tuned through October as we present our collection of essays on the Master of Suspense.

Film

'Psycho': The Mother of All Horrors

Psycho stands out not only for being one of Alfred Hitchcock's greatest films, it is also one of his most influential. It has been a template and source material for an almost endless succession of later horror films, making it appropriate to identify it as the mother of all horror films.

Francesc Quilis
Film

The City Beneath: A Century of Los Angeles Graffiti (By the Book)

With discussions of characters like Leon Ray Livingston (a.k.a. "A-No. 1"), credited with consolidating the entire system of hobo communication in the 1910s, and Kathy Zuckerman, better known as the surf icon "Gidget", Susan A. Phillips' lavishly illustrated The City Beneath: A Century of Los Angeles Graffiti, excerpted here from Yale University Press, tells stories of small moments that collectively build into broad statements about power, memory, landscape, and history itself.

Susan A. Phillips
Books

The 10 Best Indie Pop Albums of 2009

Indie pop in 2009 was about all young energy and autumnal melancholy, about the rush you feel when you first hear an exciting new band, and the bittersweet feeling you get when your favorite band calls it quits.

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