Letters

Letters 10-20-2014

Doctor Dan? After several email conversations with Rep. Benishek, he has confirmed that he doesn’t have a clue of what he does. Here’s why...

In Favor Of Our Parks [Traverse] City Proposal 1 is a creative way to improve our city parks without using our tax dollars. By using a small portion of our oil and gas royalties from the Brown Bridge Trust Fund, our parks can be improved for our children and grandchildren.

From January 1970 Popular Mechanics: “Drastic climate changes will occur within the next 50 years if the use of fossil fuels keeps rising at current rates.” That warning comes from Eugene K. Peterson of the Department of the Interior’s Bureau of Land Management.

Newcomers Might Leave: Recently we had guests from India who came over as students with the plan to stay in America. He has a master’s degree in engineering and she is doing her residency in Chicago and plans to specialize in oncology. They talked very candidly about American politics and said that after observing...

Someone Is You: On Sept 21, I joined the 400,000 who took to the streets of New York in the People’s Climate March, followed by a UN Climate Summit and many speeches. On October 13, the Pentagon issued a report calling climate change a significant threat to national security requiring immediate action. How do we move from marches, speeches and reports to meaningful work on this problem? In NYC I read a sign with a simple answer...

Necessary To Pay: Last fall, Grand Traverse voters authorized a new tax to fix roads. It is good, it is necessary.

The Real Reasons for Wolf Hunt: I have really been surprised that no one has been commenting on the true reason for the wolf hunt. All this effort has not been expended so 23 wolves can be killed each year. Instead this manufactured controversy about the wolf hunt has been very carefully crafted to get Proposal 14-2 passed.

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4Play: Gomez, Marianne Faithfull, Bon Iver, Jill Scott

Kristi Kates - July 4th, 2011
Gomez - Whatever’s on Your Mind - ATO/Red
With members that live in the UK and the U.S., Gomez convened in - where else? (huh?) - a recording studio in Virginia to work on their seventh studio set, which they produced with producer Sam Farrar (Maroon 5, Phantom Planet.) Written in large part by internet correspondence, the songs here carry through with Gomez’ trademark sound, whether it’s the acoustically-based resignation anthem “Options”; the piano-festooned title song; the uber-catchy “Place and the People”; or what is perhaps the most alt-rock track on the set, “Equalize.” It’s nothing unusual, but that’s not bad - it’s simply another set of solid new Gomez tunes.



Marianne Faithfull - Horses and High Heels - Naïve
Faithfull’s 19th album finds the singer in her mid-60s and in the same quirky form of voice that her vocals have always resided in since her early days. This album is pretty equally divided between new songs for Faithfull and a half-dozen ‘60s cover song versions; both approaches work well for the singer, most effectively on the title track, which she co-wrote about places she’s been, and the Dusty Springfield number “Goin’ Back,” which she rearranges a little and gives her own vocal twist. Other highlights include “Love Song,” “No reasons, “Past Present and Future,” and the poppiest track here, her light take on “Gee Baby.”




Bon Iver - Bon Iver - Jagjaguwar
A direct contrast to Bon Iver’s previous effort, this set finds singer-songwriter Justin Vernon with a host of musical guest collaborators, and an approach that pushes his songs out of their folky comfort zone and on to musical experimentation, especially in the percussion and “world instruments” divisions. “Perth” opens the set with marching drums fighting for space with the vocals, while “Hinnom TX” introduces ‘80s-style synthesizer runs; “Towers” and “Holocene” are perhaps the two songs that keep more of Bon Iver’s original sound while still infusing them with some new and interesting elements that actually work well.


Jill Scott - The Light of the Sun - BB Records
Scott’s latest is less produced and more “jam-like” than her other albums, as produced by Scott herself along with Faith Evans collaborator J.R. Hutson. “Blessings” opens the collective on an upbeat note, as Scott sings and speaks her way through a grocery list of the things she’s thankful for on “Blessings.” Most of the up-tempo songs are on the album’s first half, from the Donna Summer-like “So In Love” to the horn-synths of “All Cried Out Redux” and the funky “Shame”; the rest of the set, including ballads “Missing You,” “When I Wake Up,” and the jazz-inflected “Rolling Hills” lower the beats to a more mellow approach.
 
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