We haven’t talked about new music in a while and there are a lot of great new albums that have dropped recently. But two albums in particular caught my attention because they are from two 80s bands that you might have thought were long gone: Depeche Mode and Orchestral Manoevers in the Dark (“OMD” Surprise, it’s not an abbreviation for anything you would text to anyone). Both released new albums in the last couple months to mostly positive reviews. The first, Depeche Mode’s Delta Machine, is maybe the biggest surprise. Read the rest of this entry
In honor of the new movie, I’m posting here my favorite quotes from this, my favorite of all American novels. If you have other nominations, post them in the comments.
I was rather literary in college—one year I wrote a series of very solemn and obvious editorials
for the ‘Yale News’—and now I was going to bring back all such things into my life and become again that most limited of all specialists, the ‘well-rounded man.’
I found myself reminiscing about this album, one of those I pull out and play in its entirety on regular occasions. It’s still great and it still has the power to surprise and move me even today after many re-playings. All the songs are well-chosen and seem to fit into the story of the album (so to speak) but there are three songs that will always standout to me. The lyrics are sometimes puzzling because they seem pulled from the subconscious somehow, more than tied to any specific frontal-lobe meaning. Here they are:
It’s a mess. Despite a rather large anti-Tate/Pro-Wilson bias, this article here does a decent job of detailing the twists and turns of the band’s craziness. What I find most interesting about the split (other than how much the whole thing resembles a divorce – and considering one of the band members married and then quickly divorced Geoff Tate’s daughter, that couldn’t have helped band dynamics) were the competing visions. In essence (and despite the fact both versions of the band are releasing new albums), Geoff Tate wanted to keep recording and playing new music, and the rest of the band rather explicitly stated they preferred to play songs from the first five albums (their most popular ones, and their most “metal” ones). In essence, the debate was over progressing musically or else becoming your own cover/tribute band.
It seems like that step is inevitable. It seems very few artists have the longevity to keep releasing new music that sells well their entire careers. Most bands, at some point, start playing their own oldies (even if they may throw in a new tune here or there – I saw America in concert once, and in the two hour concert, they played a total of two songs that were “new-ish” and the rest were their oldest and greatest hits).
I have no real insight on this topic. I just found it somewhat interesting. It’ll be interesting to see which version of the band actually prevails in court over the legal right to the name.
It’s no secret I liked this show before, but the new season has me thinking Xtina and Cee-lo who? Usher and Shakira are better in every way and this show just keeps getting funnier and somehow manages to find even better talent every season. Read the rest of this entry
Season 4 of this great series is under way and I have just started watching it. I have my own thoughts about it so far, but since I am behind in my viewing, I thought I’d start a thread where others could share their thoughts. No spoilers please.
Also, is anyone watching the new FX series The Americans? I have been watching it and I’m mostly impressed. For those who don’t know, it’s about a couple of sleeper soviet spies living in the U.S. as an American couple during the 80s Reagan/cold war era, and stars Keri Russell as the conflicted female spy with a horrifying history and kickass fighting abilities. Let me know if you have been watching.
Notes from a Q&A with Sam Mendes held on 14th February, 2013 at the Corpus Room in Cambridge, UK
There is no real logic to these notes but they are rather just my attempt to capture what I could. It goes without saying, nothing here should be used as direct quote from Mendes.
- I was a student at Peterhouse, Cambridge, not living in college, and in 1987 a friend of mine mentioned that he wanted to direct a play he had seen called ‘Gotcha!’. I told him that he was too shy to direct. and that I should do it instead, so I did. That was the first of 3 plays that I directed in quick succession and it was after that experience that I was left with a burning desire for more. But there was no Damascus moment. Read the rest of this entry
Les Mis has been nominated for a total of 8 eight Oscars. I am not all that worried about Makeup, Sound Mixing, Production Design, and even Music. That leaves four (real) categories and I do not think Les Mis deserves to win any of these.
I have now finished this final book in The Wheel of Time series, and I’ll get right to the obvious question: Are all the questions answered and all the loose ends tied up in the end? Well no, obviously, but the book does an admirable job of tying up most of the loose ends and bringing the series to a reasonable conclusion, though of course there are some questions that still remain. I won’t spoil the ending for anyone that is still reading or plans to do so in the near future, but I will say that the ending surprised me very much in some respects. There is one aspect of it that I honestly can’t figure out any explanation for, and I am wondering what Jordan’s intentions were, but overall, I found it satisfying and it made the journey through this series worthwhile. Read the rest of this entry
My name is Monar Kamelias. I was given an opportunity to talk with The Dragon Reborn, Rand al Thor, and I make these notes of our conversation in the hope that a record will survive and be of use to those in the future who wish to know about this terrible time. I have come to the field of Merrilor as captain of the second range of the Cairhien Guard, after having studied under Herid Fel in the School of the Dragon in Cairhien. Since the murder of professor Fel, I have tried to make a historical record of events as I have observed them. I believe the professor was murdered by our enemies because of the things he was working on, so I take his final charge to me as a command.
I asked The Lord Dragon to allow me to ask him some questions and document his answers and he has agreed to do so as his time permits during our wait for the beginning of Tarmon Gaidon here on the field of Merrilor. I am meeting with The Lord Dragon in his tent, which is an average size tent near the center of the field, and is guarded by Aeil Maidens of the Spear. With us is his consort, whom he introduced to me as Min Farshaw. I am familiar with the Lady Min, as she was a visitor at the school in Cairhien and a particular favorite of the professor. The lady Min did not participate directly in my discussion with The Lord Dragon, but sat nearby studying a well-worn volume of The Prophesies of the Dragon. Read the rest of this entry