Carly Rae Jepsen - "Last Christmas" (audio)

Carly Rae Jepsen's take on Wham's Christmas classic makes for a a minimalist, controlled song.

It's that time of the year again, that is, when you look at the calendar and realize Q4 is midway through and there is suddenly a new Adele album out in the world. Also, Christmas approaches and, for said reason, Carly Rae Jepsen decides to release a cover for Wham!'s much mocked (and equally celebrated) anthem "Last Christmas" -- in the same day Adele drops 25. That takes courage.

It takes a while to process this fact and understand why Jepsen would do such a thing. Yet, she reinterprets said classic and makes it her own -- the sonic palette of choice is reminiscent of the 1980s sound that made this year's Emotion so great and the best pop album of the year. "Last Christmas", in Jepsen's world, is a controlled, hopeless anthem.

The Cigarette: A Political History (By the Book)

Sarah Milov's The Cigarette restores politics to its rightful place in the tale of tobacco's rise and fall, illustrating America's continuing battles over corporate influence, individual responsibility, collective choice, and the scope of governmental power. Enjoy this excerpt from Chapter 5. "Inventing the Nonsmoker".

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