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Film

Nostalgia for the Downtown Slacker: Bertoglio's 'Downtown 81' and Linklater's 'Slacker'

Both Bertoglio's Downtown 81 and Linklater's Slacker showcase characters who are blissfully aimless, anarchic souls discretely or overtly spurning a predictable, soulless society.

Recent
Reviews

'The Lonely City' Makes a Case for Empathy and Kindness

Olivia Laing mixes art criticism and memoir; effectively synthesizing these two modes of writing so that the personal elevates the analysis, with a sizable emotional heft.

Music

School of Seven Bells: SVIIB

SVIIB is the light show to the perfect dream, one where acknowledgements of life's strife become that which makes celebration possible.

Books

'Food Whore' Critiques the City of Dining and Deceit

Jessica Tom captures the psychology of NYC’s elite dining scene in her aspiring debut.

Reviews

'Breeders' Isn't Bad Enough to Be Good

Is this a porn film under the guise of trying to be serious? Or an attempt at a serious film from a director too used to directing porn?

Books

On James Wolcott's Engaging, Irritating, Snarky and Insightful Criticisms

In Critical Mass James Wolcott directs us to the intellectuals, entertainers, performers, and/or celebrities who have graced, cursed, or captivated him ever since he quit Frostburg State and hit Woody's Manhattan.

Reviews

These Vagabond Blues: 'John O'Hara's The New York Stories'

The new Penguin edition of John O'Hara's short stories set in New York City is a treasure for any O'Hara fan. They show the master at his best--salty, cynical and at times, disarmingly sentimental.

Reviews

Humor and Hysteria in Thomas Pynchon's 'Bleeding Edge'

Thomas Pynchon keeps his humor abundant, but he tempers it, in this look back at our very recent national past, with serious contemplation of what we do when we log on.

News

Totally Free Afropunk Festival Expands 2013 Lineup

The FREE Afropunk Festival returns to Commodore Barry Park on Aug 24 & 25 with Chuck D, Questlove, DEATH and many more.

Books

Patricia Volk's Shocked' Is a Memoir, All Dressed Up

Three lives—a mother, a daughter, and a fashion designer—in exquisite miniature.

Politics

Occupy Literature: New York from Melville to the Beats

Before Occupy Wall Street rattled the money merchants, Herman Melville and the Beats shook the city's foundation with gumption and glee.

Reviews

An Affectionate Look at the Privilege of the White and the Middle Class: 'The Last Days of Disco'

Amongst themselves, the main cast of characters are nominal equals, and that contributes to a particular kind of status parsing.

Reviews

'Love Goes to Buildings on Fire' Like Its Title, Is Poetry

The most important five years in popular music -- including the birth and rise of CBGB, the birth of disco and hip-hop, Philip Glass’s emergence as a Serious Composer, and the many shades of salsa -- in one volume.

Music

So Percussion: It Is Time

Percussion ensemble keeps counting out time.

Reviews

'The Love We Make' Is One for the Vaults

You gotta know when to roll 'em, know when to cut 'em, and know when to let it be.

Reviews

'Limelight': Dancing to a Great American Crime Story

This story features plenty of the usual suspects: opportunistic thugs, opportunistic law men, and the pride which comes before a fall.

Reviews

This First In-Depth Examination of Jazz Icon 'Carla Bley' was Worth the Wait

Carla Bley never sacrifices depth for the sake of accessibility and never delves so deep as to become inaccessible.

Music

Joe Deninzon Trio: Exuberance

Violin virtuoso Joe Deninzon and friends make an exhilarating debut.

Music

Paul Simon: There Goes Rhymin' Simon / Live Rhymin'

Hey, these look a lot like those remasters we got seven years ago. Oh well, you'll need at least one of them.

Reviews

'The Extra Man' Is Quietly Excellent

There’s more at play than just a museum of oddities, a completely trivial and forgettable giggle parade. When The Extra Man is hinting at an extrapolation on the subjective nature of reality and exploring the ways selfish people fail to connect with one another, it's at its best.

Events

HARD Tour: 24 July 2010 - New York

Although M.I.A.'s performance didn't meet expectation, Rye Rye, Die Antword, Skream & Benga, and Sleigh Bells upped the ante, one after the other, after the other.

Brian C Reilly
Reviews

Uncertainty: A Meditation on Choice in New York City

Uncertainty may not be deeply profound, but McGhee and Siegel, and their lead actors, use the film to explore the power of chance and choice in a subtle and emotionally compelling way.

Books

I'm in a New York State of Mind

New York City is all about having a dream -- even if you're aren't quite certain what it is.

Books

Re: Reading Chronic City

A second take on the most recent novel by Jonathan Lethem, which was named a New York Times Best Book for 2009.

Books

Naked City: The Death and Life of Authentic Urban Places

Sociologist Sharon Zukin looks at the forces at play in some of the cooler neighborhoods of New York in this update of Jane Jacobs and the principles of urban revitalization for the 21st century.

Books

Let the Great World Spin by Colum McCann

This maddening new novel is cinematic, set in New York City in the midst of its slide into near-complete dysfunction.

Music

Kieran Hebden and Steve Reid: NYC

Jazz drummer Steve Reid is a fascinating contrast to the rigid grids typical of Four Tet.

Music

Brazilian Girls: New York City

The Brazilian Girls make a smart career move, but a not so great record.

Books

Legends of the Chelsea Hotel by Ed Hamilton

So there you have it. Ryan Adams at the Chelsea -- maybe.

John Davidson
Music

Thomas Dybdahl: One Day Youll Dance For Me, New York City

Norwegian singer-songwriter makes good with New York City.

Dara Kartz
Music

Dizzy Gillespie & Charlie Parker: Town Hall, New York City, June 22, 1945

A long-lost 1945 recording of Bird, Diz, and Max in the full flush of their youthful invention. Sparkling, crackling, thrilling American music.

Will Layman
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