Music has been a most necessary balm in 2020 and will remain one in the post-summer months. This list offers a brief repository of albums that gleam in ways particularly autumnal.
In Jamila Woods' latest single "SULA (Paperback)", Toni Morrison and her 1973 novel of the same name are not static literary phenomena. They are an artist and artwork as galvanizing and alive as Woods herself.
In her 1970 avant-garde short Fly, Yoko Ono works within the same parameters as directors like Alfred Hitchcock or Takashi Miike. Yet, she posits the intermixture of her celluloid images as reconstructive effort, not a destructive one.
Shuttered inside our homes, contending with the COVID-19 outbreak, Nick Drake's third album promises rebirth and renewal: the pink moon is coming.
Chantal Akerman’s 1968 short film Saute ma ville directly reflects our current state, serving as a meditative text on the art of staying home.
Natalia Leite's 2015 film Bare picks up where Barbara Loden's 1970 film Wanda left off, each acting, indirectly, as the proto- and fourth wave- feminist renderings of the other.
Camille Billops moved beyond predictable and well-tread ground to open up space for new narratives in her films—about Black families, Black women, and Black middle-class life—that pulled on her distinctive and unapologetic worldview.
Joni Mitchell's foray into jazz was not an impulsive change. Rather, jazz has been the constant, undulating beneath industry demands and topical concerns that called for the acoustic guitar or the Appalachian dulcimer.
Haile Gerima's Bush Mama remains a critically transformative film, particularly in its most subliminal, yet important, proclamation: the days of separating "art" and "artist" are over. For in Black cinema, those days never existed to begin with.
Wave's status as Patti Smith's most unapologetically pop album reveals the most authentically "punk" gesture of her career: rejecting the idea that her genre capabilities begin and end with that four-letter word.
Joni Mitchell's latest book denotes the next step in the Joni evolution, and indicates that perhaps those different languages for her—of visual art, poetry, and music—will finally be held in equal regard.