Monthly Archives: December 2010

Happy New Year

Thanks to my readers. I’m glad the year’s over. I can’t think of a better summary — what I’m leaving, what the next twelve months augur — than the embedded song.

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A Second Thought: 2010

The relatively sane people who don’t dedicate themselves to criticism must assume we’re born having listened to, watched, and read everything. The reality is more banal: we’re constantly playing catch-up. I don’t think we do a good enough job reminding … Continue reading

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Singles

This year’s singles ranked, from top to bottom. 10 Brad Paisley – American Saturday Night 9 Ciara – Ride Aeroplane – We Can’t Fly Sade – Soldier of Love Brad Paisley – Water 8 Javiera Mena – Hasta La Verdad … Continue reading

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BREAKING NEWS

Daryl Hall is cool again! I thought the indie world had known this since 2003.

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More holiday reviews: Carlos and True Grit

In brief: Carlos. I should point out that I am evaluating the two and a half hour “theatrical” cut, not the five-hours-plus version. Whether the longer version fills in motivational lacunae for the revolutionary known as Carlos the Jackal (Edgar … Continue reading

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Good night

Co-written and co-produced by Daryl Hall.

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The best of the rest

1. Taylor Swift – Speak Now 2. Vampire Weekend – Contra 3. Big Boi – Sir Lucious Left Foot: The Son of Chico Dusty 4. The-Dream – Love King 5. LCD Soundsystem – This is Happening 6. Rick Ross – … Continue reading

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#1. Taylor Swift – Speak Now. My poptimist reputation notwithstanding, I was unmoved by Speak Now‘s predecessors beyond a handful of singles. Then I played this, and for eight songs in her singing, critical eye, and arranging skill (how easy … Continue reading

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“Blackness, like all culture, is not biological…”

A lovely Ta-Nehisi Coates piece on black veneration for Teena Marie.

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“It’s not your fault”: The King’s Speech

American audiences were introduced to Colin Firth in The English Patient, in which Firth’s cuckoled husband aimed a plane at Ralph Fiennes and misses, blowing himself up. In 2003’s Love Actually Firth’s doughy hips and doleful mien blended perfectly with … Continue reading

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Teena Marie – RIP

If this is true, it’s a loss. Although she experienced a commerical resurgence a few years ago, it didn’t reflect how batshit her best work sounded. Thanks to Chuck Eddy, I got Emerald City several years too late, with no … Continue reading

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#2. Vampire Weekend – Contra No longer merely signifing thoughtfulness, these guys begin an album with a self-parodic ode to drinking horchata and end with a ponderous development of  the title metaphor. I stand by this.

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