Berfrois

Jennifer Seaman Cook on Grunge

Jennifer Seaman Cook on Grunge

They're saying grunge is almost dead. You can almost hear it coming. As a counterethos to the age of self-entrepreneurial professionalization, grunge held onto the promise of noise at the site of the body.

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Starman

Starman

Bowie in Los Angeles was a kind of mantic probe for young kids discovering the joy of sex, sexuality, art, artiness. He was going into areas that no one had really explored before.

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Ed Simon on Bob Dylan

Ed Simon on Bob Dylan

There is no living American poet who deserves the characterization of being a prophet more than Bob Dylan. Both a product of his land and his land a product of him, Dylan the prophet has been Jeremiah by the rivers of Babylon

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Elisa Veini on the Tango

Elisa Veini on the Tango

I have to admit, the tango was no evident musical choice for a film about a Belgian pub. One would rather expect to hear schlagers or chansons, exactly what we tried to do, but somehow they did not fit in, or perhaps they fitted just too well.

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‘Prince was a light, a star, a beacon’

‘Prince was a light, a star, a beacon’

The death of Prince Rogers Nelson, grandchile of Louisiana Creoles, occurred on April 21st, 2016, just about at the end of the semester for my friends, my students and I, in academia.

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An Improvisational Jazz Symphony

An Improvisational Jazz Symphony

Fiston Mwanza Mujila was announced winner of the 2015 Etisalat Literature Prize at a grand ceremony in Lagos on March 19, 2016.

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Nicholas Rombes on David Bowie

Nicholas Rombes on David Bowie

As a kid in the 1970s, kicking around the scrubby back lots near Toledo, Ohio, I assumed David Bowie was from Detroit, Michigan, about an hour north of my hometown.

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Nicholas Rombes on Tommy Ramone

Nicholas Rombes on Tommy Ramone

Tommy Ramone the avant-gardist. Buried in a few obituaries and reminiscences about Tommy Ramone were mentions of the sharp, avant-garde angle of vision that characterized the early Ramones. Maybe now — as the last Ramone has died — it’s time to re-think the Ramones as essentially an avant-garde outfit...

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Truth Through Motion

Truth Through Motion

On a chilly October day in 1806, Napoleon Bonaparte's army laid waste to Prussian troops on the outskirts of Jena, a university town in central Germany. The sounds of his canons reverberated through the town, providing a sound track for the young philosopher Georg Wilhelm Friedrich Hegel as he...

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Andrew Gallix: Let’s Go!

Andrew Gallix: Let’s Go!

Retro-futurism, as we now call it, came out of the closet in the late '70s due to the widespread feeling that there was indeed ‘no future’ any more. Whilst Johnny Rotten waxed apocalyptical, Howard Devoto screeched existentially about his future no longer being what it was. Time seemed topsy-turvy,...

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Is Kate Bush a Rosicrucian?

Is Kate Bush a Rosicrucian?

From The London Review of Books: We know all the essential passport application stuff about Bush, and down the years she’s dutifully done the odd unrevealingly bland Q&A, but there’s an immense amount we don’t know. Has she ever taken psychedelic drugs? Has she had therapy? (Reichian, Jungian, marriage?)...

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Logan K. Young on The Replacements

Logan K. Young on The Replacements

I, myself, was barely six months old when Twin/Tone put out The Mats’ Let It Be. The day, they say, was Orwellian: Tuesday, October 2, 1984.

Naturally, I recall nothing of it.

Growing up, simple arithmetic holds I was 20 when Colin Meloy’s book about Let It Be was released by...

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A Hot Mess Strategy by Eli S. Evans

A Hot Mess Strategy by Eli S. Evans

Almost from the start, Miley could hardly have made it clearer that she was not hysterical – that this was not a mental breakdown but instead a rather virtuosic performance of just the sort of mental breakdown made popular by people like her pop predecessor and purported idol, Britney...

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Nicholas Rombes on Lou Reed

Nicholas Rombes on Lou Reed

This is not another obituary, another retrospective, another "Lou Reed's songs were the soundtrack to my life" essay. It is instead an attempt to find, in the small, quiet pockets of air in Lou Reed's 1975 album Metal Machine Music trace elements of the less obvious ingredients that made...

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