Monthly Archives: September 2014

Luke James and Lee Ann Womack

Luke James – Luke James Hanging around the edges of the biz for years writing songs for Chris Brown and Bieber, Luke James learned what not to be. He feels deeply and wants listeners to know it. Eschewing the trad … Continue reading

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‘The evidence in those papers is very strong’

Five groups of researchers confirm what many suspected: Australia was aflame in 2013 thanks to emission-fueled climate warming. Because this is 2014 and there are stupid people, the New York Times had to dot its i’s this morning: For several … Continue reading

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Charlie Crist: A Republican with ‘varying degrees of empathy’

If Jeb Lund’s story about the Rick Scott-Charlie Crist gubernatorial race consisted of links to stories about both these creatures, it would be valuable; but Lund also stitches a narrative showing how, rising sea levels aside, Florida is deeply fucked. … Continue reading

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‘Muscular economic populism’ and its discontents

Rick Perlstein, interviewed while promoting The Invisible Bridge, on the rightward turn of the Democratic Party: One of its roots was surprisingly enough the New Left’s turn away from New Deal politics and union politics. And it comes out of … Continue reading

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Britney: ‘an infinitely recombitant instrument’

“Britney Spears” came to me as a heterosexual love object. At my college newspaper the male editors lusted after her early ’99 Rolling Stone cover, for which I loathed them.. She wasn’t a person — she was, to quote Billy … Continue reading

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‘Give it back when she’s had enough’

The singer of “Quarterback” releases a new single. She’s gonna be around a while.

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Singles 9/26

Nickleback is in third place, OK? In this electoral season and after two weeks’ worth of news I’m ready to reward any effort at contemporary relevance (spare me the “dated” references chatter: music is dated the moment it’s released), and … Continue reading

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‘You find glory by yourself’: Memphis

His name is Willis Earl Beal, and he’s in every frame of Memphis. Thin, quick with a smile, wearing a brimmed hat, he moves through the abandoned strip malls and rural pockets with confidence, buoyed by the music he hears … Continue reading

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R.E.M.’s Monster: ‘We were at the absolute peak of our fame.’

I don’t have much time for R.E.M. these days, but Monster is for me one of their records least tainted by historicity. Twenty years later I’m an even bigger appreciator of the filters used to create distance between Michael Stipe … Continue reading

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Situation no win: What modern rock looked like in 1991

Chart-watching listeners, note: after Nirvana exploded, Sept. 28, 1991’s modern rock top five would look like an Archaeopteryx skeleton. “Modern rock” had enough currency before “Smells Like Teen Spirit” for my top forty station to block program a Sunday night … Continue reading

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Eric Holder: the legacy

Eric Holder criticized the Supreme Court’s voting rights decision. He is working on reducing mandatory life sentences for certain offenders. He refused to enforce the Defense of Marriage Act and yesterday filed court papers challenging election laws in Wisconsin and … Continue reading

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‘Congress has utterly failed its constitutional responsibilities’

When you’ve lost the NYT, etc. There isn’t a full picture — because Mr. Obama has not provided one — of how this bombing campaign will degrade the extremist groups without unleashing unforeseen consequences in a violent and volatile region. … Continue reading

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