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Posted inArts & Culture

Medeski, Martin & Wood

Continuing to subvert and expand the organ combo–stand-up bassist Chris Wood fills the typical guitar position, joining keyboardist John Medeski and drummer Billy Martin–Medeski, Martin & Wood have set their sights on the stratosphere with their third album, Friday Afternoon in the Universe (Gramavision). Their previous work masterfully assimilated all manner of divergent sounds, seamlessly […]

Posted inNews & Politics

Lose the Muse

RE: “A Pair After Moliere,” by Adam Langer, Chicago Reader, 10/6/95, pp. 42-43 I would like to recommend that you expand the first section of your venerable weekly newspaper to include a poetry and fiction section, where Adam Langer’s theatrical reviews would be better placed: his incisive improv-style prose and cutting-edge poetry do not deserve […]

Posted inArts & Culture

Mad Scene

Mad Scene’s music neatly reconciles apparently incompatible elements. Led by the husband-and-wife team of guitarist-vocalists Lisa Siegel and Hamish Kilgour, the New York City-based quintet takes a loose, shambling approach similar to that favored by Scottish popsters the Pastels and New Zealand’s Clean (cofounded by Kilgour in the late 70s), but the horn-laced arrangements on […]

Posted inArts & Culture

The Addiction

Here’s something to wrestle with: a PhD candidate in philosophy at NYU becomes a raving and ravenous Greenwich Village vampire and junkie–the two conditions are seen as interchangeable–while contemplating the victims of the Vietnam War and Nazi extermination camps and then promptly receives absolution. The dumbest, most pretentious script of 1995 is served up straight, […]

Posted inNews & Politics

WBEZ’s Big Mistake

Some thoughts brought on by Cate Plys’s recent article [“WBEZ’s Big Gamble,” September 15]: It’s ironic that station manager Torey Malatia is concerned about WBEZ becoming an antenna for programming produced elsewhere, because that is precisely the direction in which he has taken the station. There’s been a steady erosion of local presence on WBEZ, […]

Posted inNews & Politics

The City File

“Marriage can be understood as a kind of insurance policy that promotes economic and physical well-being,” writes William Harms in the University of Chicago Chronicle (September 28), summarizing findings of U. of C. sociologist Linda Waite. Among them: marriage prolongs life, especially for men. “Married men live, on average, 10 years longer than nonmarried men, […]

Posted inNews & Politics

Getting Zappa

Dear Reader, Peter Margasak’s “review” of Frank Zappa’s artistic achievement (“False Idol,” September 29), with its barely concealed moralizing, fit perfectly with your lead article on censorship at the U. of C. in the 1950s [“Naked Censorship”]. I would ask Mr. Margasak to consider how closely his terms of condemnation (“Zappa was a nasty person […]

Posted inMusic

Original Din

MX-80 Das Love Boat (Atavistic) MX-80 Sound Hard Attack/Big Hits (Atavistic) Bruce Anderson Brutality (Atavistic) Angel Corpus Christi White Courtesy Phone (Almo Sounds) MX-80 is one of those idiosyncratic bands that came of age in the dark hours before the indie-punk revolution of 1976-’77. Along with such combos as Pere Ubu, Chrome, Debris, Half Japanese, […]