Monthly Archives

February 2015

#KickingtheCanon by A.A. Dowd Music

The Smashing Pumpkins | Mellon Collie and the Infinite Sadness

February 27, 2015

“Let’s approach this like it’s our last album,” Billy Corgan claims to have said to his bandmates, in so many words, before work began on their supersized third record, Mellon Collie and the Infinite Sadness. It wasn’t the last gasp of the Smashing Pumpkins, or even of the original, pre-breakup iteration of the group, before Corgan slapped the retired brand on his glorified solo campaign. But the album certainly felt like a swan song — the endpoint these alt-rock heroes had been working…

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by Carson Lund Film

Sabbatical | Brandon Colvin

As middle-aged philosophy professor Ben Hardin (Robert Longstreet) endures an existential nosedive, Sabbatical responds by redirecting that void on the audience through stylistic deprivation. Director Brandon Colvinshoots in a restrictive 4:3 aspect ratio and never moves his camera. Generally, his shots run parallel to a wall or…

February 27, 2015
#KickingtheCanon by Zach Lewis Film

Sátántangó | Bela Tarr

Sátántangó’s very first shot set the stage for everything director Béla Tarr would make, what international festival directors would seek to imitate, and a developmental period for what would come to be colloquially known as “slow cinema.” Before this colossal seven-and-a-half-hour long trudge through the political…

February 23, 2015
#KickingtheCanon by Jason Gubbels Music

Tom T. Hall | In Search of a Song

There were country music concept albums before In Search of a Song and there would be many after, from modern sounds in country & western music to tributes to the best damn fiddle players in the world and red headed strangers. But Tom T. Hall’s modest eleven…

February 20, 2015
#KickingtheCanon by Kathie Smith Film

The Sun’s Burial | Nagisa Ôshima

Nagisa Ôshima’s audacity as a filmmaker was unmistakable by the time his third feature hit screens in 1960. The full scope of the filmmaker’s rabid appetite for formal and social rebellion would develop over more than two decades, but the seeds of subversion were…

February 17, 2015
#PopRocks by Sam C. Mac Music

4Minute | Crazy

That South Korean girl group 4Minute started 2015 with a self-conscious “revamp” of their brand isn’t surprising, since this kind of maneuver is seen often in the landscape of K-pop. Just as the recent evolutionary timeline of the region’s popular music represents a condensed version of…

February 11, 2015
#KickingtheCanon by Guy Lodge Music

Carole King | Tapestry

“The cat record” is how I identified Tapestry at the age of five — initial fascination with my mother’s scruffy vinyl copy stemming less from its warm musicality and clear-amber songcraft than from its famously candid cover shot, with Carole King’s own tabby, Telemachus, a smoky blur in the…

February 10, 2015
#KickingtheCanon by Matthew Lucas Film

The Thin Red Line | Terrence Malick

Whenever anyone mentions the 1998 Oscars, the conversation inevitably turns to the great “injustice” of Shakespeare in Love beating Steven Spielberg’s Saving Private Ryan for Best Picture. But the real injustice of the 1998 Oscars wasn’t denying Ryan the top prize, it was in not rewarding Terrence Malick’s masterpiece, The Thin Red…

February 9, 2015
In Review | Online film and music criticism