Vinyl Vlog 539
COLUMN

A deeper look at the grooves pressed into the Nowhere Generation LP by Rise Against. It feels difficult to believe that, with Nowhere Generation, Rise Against has been making records for twenty years. Now, that isn’t to say any band making music together uninterrupted for twenty years is unheard of, just that it’s uncommon for a PUNK BAND to stay together for that long without there at least being some kind of break along the way is a statement unto...

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Friday, 28 January 2022
SPOTLIGHT: Solid Gold
FEATURES

WHO: U-Roy WHAT: Solid Gold WHY: You don’t have to know that U-Roy is a reggae legend to enjoy this – his final album released posthumously. Solid Gold contains, basically, solid gold reggae hits revisited (updated?) and reimagined by U-Roy with an all-star cast of contributors like Mick Jones and Scientist. It doesn’t matter that these aren’t new songs, Solid Gold sounds more like a celebration of U-Roy’s life and reggae music in general and there isn’t a single low-point...

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Thursday, 27 January 2022
I Wanna Be Literated #247
BOOKS

The Theory of EverythingThe Origin and Fate of the Universeby Stephen Hawking It’s probably a good idea if we collectively started consuming a little less fiction and read more non-fiction, particularly stuff that challenged and helps us understand the world around us, right? Someone on my block didn’t think so and put this book in a “Free” box on their stoop and I couldn’t help but give it a good home. What I like to think is that the contents...

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Tuesday, 25 January 2022
TV Party Tonight! #104
4K/Blu-rRay

A Clockwork Orange At first, I thought this was going to be a tough review to write. When I first started getting into Kubrick’s movies, I remember really liking A Clockwork Orange but some scenes at the beginning sort of tainted my opinion of the movie. Yep, I’m talking about that scene you’re thinking about, and I really couldn’t think about A Clockwork Orange for years without thinking specifically of that scene. Going through the AFI Top 100 list, I...

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Thursday, 20 January 2022
TV Party Tonight! #103
4K/Blu-rRay

The Shawshank Redemption Hello there, dear reader and welcome to another edition of TV Party Tonight! We have several Warner Brothers movies in the chamber and I want to start with the movie I’m most excited to talk about which is the Shawshank Redemption. Why? Because. I’m about to go to bat for this movie and bat HARD. The reason why I think I need to do this is because this movie gets a bad rap, and it kind...

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Tuesday, 18 January 2022
Spotlight: THe Sound of Yourself
FEATURES

WHO: Mac McCaughan WHAT: The Sound of Yourself WHY: Being late to the game is the name of MY game. I only discovered Superchunk a few years ago and have been loving diving into their back catalog. The Sound of Yourself is frontman Mac McCaughan’s solo work and it serves as an exploration of styles, not sticking exclusively to the rocking sounds of Superchunk. While the songs here expertly vary from ambient, to ballads, to straight up rock songs, what...

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Monday, 17 January 2022
Vinyl Vlog 538
COLUMN

A deeper look at the grooves pressed into the You’re Class, I’m Trash LP by The Monsters. Arguably the greatest compliment one can pay to a punk record is not to call it “good” or “great” or anything like that (because such terms can be – and have been – dismissed as a matter of opinion or as a matter of perception), but to simply exclaim, “You’ve gotta hear this” to as many potentially receptive ears as possible. Word tends...

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Tuesday, 11 January 2022
I Wanna Be Literated #246
BOOKS

Crossroadsby Jonathan Franzen I watch so much fiction (movies, TV shows), that I make up for it with the books I read. I didn’t read much last year, but when I did, I tried to stick to non-fiction, autobiographies, etc. But when Jonathan Franzen releases a book, that all comes to a stop. I’m what you would call a literary dum-dum. I judge books by their covers. I can’t recognize an elegant sentence if it was repeated for an entire...

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Monday, 10 January 2022
SPOTLIGHT: The Million things that never happened
FEATURES

WHO: Billy Bragg WHAT: The Million Things That Never Happened WHY: Billy Bragg has easily slid into the “easy listening” category over the past few albums, but what sets him apart is that his music still packs a powerful message. It’s quite an efficient and interesting way to get your point across. The Million Things That Never Happened is a pandemic album in that it deals with issues of divisiveness and conflict that became more prominent during that time. It’s...

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Sunday, 09 January 2022
Vinyl Vlog 537
COLUMN

A deeper look at the grooves pressed into the Voodoo Rhythm Records Label Compilation Vol. 5 LP. I confess that label compilations have never been my favorite thing. Not that I’m definitively against the form (I have heard some good comps over the years, and labels like Sub Pop, Killrockstars, Epitaph, Fat Wreck Chords and Pirates Press have a longstanding history of having produced some pretty great ones), it’s just that many of the compilations I’ve heard (and this includes...

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Friday, 07 January 2022