Add and subtract and as a matter of fact: the best albums of 1982

ABC – The Lexicon of Love Michael Jackson – Thriller Kid Creole and the Coconuts – Wise Guys Duran Duran – Rio Roxy Music – Avalon New Order – 1981-1982 King Sunny Ade and his African Beats – Juju Music George Clinton – Computer Games The English Beat – Special Beat Service Richard and LindaContinue reading “Add and subtract and as a matter of fact: the best albums of 1982”

To doubt me is absurd: Best albums of 1981

Psychedelic Furs – Talk Talk Talk Marvin Gaye – In Our Lifetime The Human League – Dare The Go-Go’s – Beauty and the Beat Prince – Controversy Elvis Costello and the Attractions – Trust Luther Vandross – Never Too Much Teena Marie – It Must Be Magic Merle Haggard – Big City Rosanne Cash –Continue reading “To doubt me is absurd: Best albums of 1981”

Check, please! ‘Cafe Society’ needs more time in the oven

As he demonstrated in 2012’s To Rome with Love, Jesse Eisenberg is the best cast of Woody Allen alter egos. Garrulous and conceding nothing to audience sympathy, he has Allen’s verbal facility and none of the writer-director’s weaknesses as an actor. Cafe Society reunites Eisenberg with Kristen Stewart, the object of affection from 2009’s AdventurelandContinue reading “Check, please! ‘Cafe Society’ needs more time in the oven”

Where’s my sandy beach? The best albums of 1980

1. Pretenders – Pretenders 2. Prince – Dirty Mind 3. Change – The Glow of Love 4. Captain Beefheart – Doc at the Radar Station 5. Steely Dan – Gaucho 6. XTC – Black Sea 7. Public Image Ltd. – Second Edition 8. Talking Heads – Remain in Light 9. Diana Ross – diana 10.Continue reading “Where’s my sandy beach? The best albums of 1980”

The bat shit furor of ‘The Fury’

If nothing else, The Fury satisfied a craving that had been gnawing at audiences since the early sixties: what was the best way to kill John Cassavetes? Revealing the manner of his death would count as a spoiler, but I’ll say that the screen’s go-to man for piss-ant sourness gets a sendoff worthy of him.Continue reading “The bat shit furor of ‘The Fury’”

DNC, Day 4: Love trumps (!) hate?

11:34. A lawyer in spirit if not heart, Clinton isn’t a natural nor should she be — she’s married to the Black Hole of Empathy; her boss was the best presidential orator of his generation. Again, I can say nothing to the thousands of women in the crowd who adored it and her. She shouldContinue reading “DNC, Day 4: Love trumps (!) hate?”

I’ll tell you about her for you oughta know : Best of 1963

A trio of songs about erotic devastation, followed by the euphoric release. Roy Orbison – In Dreams The Ronettes – Be My Baby George Jones – You Comb Her Hair The Crystals – Then He Kissed Me Jan and Dean – Surf Party Dionne Warwick – Don’t Make Me Over Bill Anderson – Still MarthaContinue reading “I’ll tell you about her for you oughta know : Best of 1963”

Barack Obama, master synthesist

Drone wars. The killing of a “radicalized” American-born cleric without due process of law. The deportation of illegal immigrants. Daring to think he could treat with John Boehner. The hilarity of hiring former Wall Street people to run the economic recovery in 2009 when eighty years ago Franklin Delano Roosevelt had a worldwide depression onContinue reading “Barack Obama, master synthesist”

Roisin Murphy and Nice as Fuck

Roisin Murphy – Take Her Up to Monto Seven years separated Overworked and last year’s Hookless Tunes – uh, Hairless Toys. Now that the Irish singer’s on the assembly line it’s time to face facts. To her credit, she has no interest in recording a dance pop classic as febrile and playable as Overpowered, butContinue reading “Roisin Murphy and Nice as Fuck”

Somebody’s watching me

Through the haze of a news cycle in which Democratic supporters used the word “treason” to describe Donald Trump’s encouragement of Russian eavesdropping, this story first reported by Buzzfeed a few weeks ago looks more interesting: At Mar-a-Lago, the Palm Beach resort he runs as a club for paying guests and celebrities, Donald Trump hadContinue reading “Somebody’s watching me”

DNC, Day 3: No more war edition

11:59. Good night! 11:45. As tactics, a masterful speech, moving into the center that the GOP thinks it has occupied. As rhetoric, it meshed his gift for the demotic with the phrasemaking, the latter not often among his strongest suits. I suspect “homegrown demagogues” and “We don’t look to be ruled” will be alluded toContinue reading “DNC, Day 3: No more war edition”