Tag: music

  • Desert Double Bill

    Desert Double Bill

    The Mojave Desert. Brochures have us thinking that its allure is made up entirely of artificial oases. First and foremost being Palm Springs, a city best known as a retreat for the likes of Sinatra and Dean Martin. Insofar as the larger cities are seen as desirable destinations, it’s so tourists can arrogate themselves above nature. But the freaks and stoners of the 1990s Palm Desert Scene – Yawning Man, Kyuss, Fatso Jetson and the like – knew that there was something far more interesting in the desert itself.

  • Godspeed as Bombs Fall

    Godspeed as Bombs Fall

    Godspeed You! Black Emperor at the Belasco in Los Angeles on Thursday, March 3rd, the ninth day of Russia’s invasion of Ukraine.

  • Little Pink Nothing

    I always wanted Ariel Pink’s music to do more for me. The initial allure was mostly there but ultimately I never found he was able to do much with it. His best albums never left me more than lukewarm. I’m not just saying that because he’s now being (reasonably) treated as persona non-grata since he and John Maus were spotted at last week’s putsch, or because of his pathetic interview on Tucker Carlson. Pink has had credible allegations of abuse swirling around him for years, and he’s never really bothered refuting his scummy statements on race and gender. It hasn’t been easy to take him seriously for a while now.

  • You Can’t Escape the Clowns

    You Can’t Escape the Clowns

    Compared to the hellish turn events have taken over the past four years, the Great Clown Panic of 2016 is easy to forget. But as I wrote at the time, this bizarre phenomenon – part prank, part media hype, part soccer mom moral panic – was not as alien to America as it appeared. Far from it, it seemed to be symptomatic of a country whose already threadbare psyche was completely unraveling. If you believed in omens, it would be easy to see this as a preamble to something far more menacing in store.

  • Synthpop, the Left, and the Future That Refuses to Come

    Synthpop, the Left, and the Future That Refuses to Come

    Depeche Mode have long suffered in the synthpop scene from what I call “godfather syndrome.” They aren’t the only act of massive influence who find themselves in such a position. Nor is it entirely, or even mostly, their fault. The irony of popular culture’s nostalgic time-loop is that it never really lets you see even the most influential acts through anything but layer upon layer of distorting filters.