Letters

Letters 12-14-2014

Come Together There is a time-honored war strategy known as “divide and conquer,” and never has it been more effective than now. The enemy is using it against us through television, internet and other social media. I opened a Facebook account a couple of years back to gain more entries in local contests. Since then I had fallen under its spell; I rushed into judgment on several social issues based on information found on those pages

Quiet The Phones! This weekend we attended two beautiful Christmas musical events and the enjoyment of both were significantly diminished by self-absorbed boors holding their stupid iPhones high overhead to capture extremely crucial and highly needed photos. We too own iPhones, but during a public concert we possess the decency and manners to leave them turned off and/or at home. Today’s performance, the annual Messiah Sing at Traverse City’s Central Methodist Church, was a new low: we watched as Mr. Self-Absorbed not only took several photos but then afterwards immediately posted them to his Facebook page. We were dumbfounded.

A Torturous Defense In defense of the C.I.A.’s use of torture in a mostly fruitless search for vital information, some suggest that the dire situation facing us after 9-11, justified the use of torture even at the expense of the potential loss of much of our nation’s moral authority.

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Timberlake, Fiasco, Kenna to climb My. Kilimanjaro

Kristi Kates - June 1st, 2009
Timberlake, Fiasco, Kenna to Climb Mount Kilimanjaro

Kristi Kates 6/1/09


It sounds like yet another music biz tabloid rumor, but it’s not; Justin Timberlake, hip-hopster Lupe Fiasco, and singer Kenna are joining forces to climb Africa’s Mount Kilimanjaro to raise awareness for the worldwide water crisis. Timberlake told GQ magazine he’s been “training like a pro” in order to get his oxygen consumption maximized, while Kenna is “training in secret” and Fiasco is busy conjuring up friendly jokes about sabotaging his fellow climbers with killer ants and tricky tent laces in order to beat them to the top. The climb will take the three musicians to the highest point in Africa, where the altitude at 19,000 feet plus low temps make it a tedious and physically taxing feat that will take them a week to accomplish...
Moby has completed work on his latest album, which he actually recorded at home by himself on his own home studio equipment, although he says he also roped in plenty of “relatively unknown” pals to help with the musical end of things. The album, which will be the follow-up to Moby’s 2008 set Last Night, has been dubbed Wait For Me, and Moby hopes to have the set hit stores on June 30th. Tracks on the album will include “Study War,” “A Seated Night,” “Isolate,” “Pale Horses,” and the title track; Moby’s already recruited David Lynch to craft the album’s first music video...
Sinead O’Connor’s hit 1990 sophomore album I Do Not Want What I Haven’t Got, which contains her breakout single “Nothing Compares 2 U,” is getting a reissue from Capitol/EMI records as a double-disc set. The expanded version will also include a 10-song bonus disc complete with B-sides, live cuts, and two of O’Connor’s previously unreleased tracks, including her interesting cover of John Lennon’s single “Mind Games.” O’Connor fans can snag the revamped set both online and at retail, as it’s in stores now...
Wilco’s latest project, the whimsically-named Wilco (The Album), is now due on June 30th from Nonesuch Records, as produced by the band with Jim Scott, who mixed Wilco’s 2007 set, Sky Blue Sky. On the new album, frontman Jeff Tweedy says that they’ve “used the studio as another instrument,” and that approach can be heard in the lengthy compositions and super-layered arrangements on many of the tracks, including the 6-minute “Bull Black Nova” and the harmony-filled “Country Disappeared. The humorous, self-referential opening track, “Wilco the Song,” was premiered late last year on TV show The Colbert Report...

MODERN ROCK LINK OF THE WEEK:
And speaking of Wilco, if you’d like a sneak preview of that new set, you can check it out (streaming, not downloadable, sorry) right here: http://beta.wilcoworld.net/records/thealbum/index.php...
MINI BUZZ:
Franz Ferdinand have turned down an offer from a U.S. fast food chain to use one of their songs (we’ll let you guess which one); the band said that a “large Mexican chain” wanted to use one of their tunes in an ad campaign, but the band didn’t feel comfortable signing over the song knowing that it would be “played in the background while people were biting into their chili enchilada or something like that”...
Retro-cool singer Adele is set to appear on the TV series “Ugly Betty” as herself; Adele will perform on the show later this year at a photo shoot that takes place within the sitcom’s storyline...
The Dears, who are welcoming guitarist Rob Benvie back into the band for their upcoming North American tour, are already working on the follow-up to their current album, Missiles, and say that they’ve been trekking the streets of Montreal in order to find inspiration...
Singer Nelly Furtado has launched her own indie record label, Nelstar, in order to work with new bands; her first signing is Toronto-based electro band Fritz Helder and the Phantoms, of which the members coincidentally also serve as Furtado’s backup dancers on tour...
Peter Wolf hasn’t released a new album since 2002, but that hiatus will reach an end this summer when his as-yet-untitled album on Universal hits stores; Wolf has recorded a “bunch” of songs for the set, but expects at least a dozen to be on the final tracklisting...
And UK modern popsters Keane complete their current set of U.S. tour dates and, after a short break, return to Europe for a second set of live shows through August, including stops in Werchter, Belgium (6/20), Eadestown, Ireland (7/10), and Chelmsford, UK on August 23rd for the V Fest...
And now it’s time to break out your cash for this week’s new discs... ON CD: Channel’s Channel... The Heptones’ Meet the Now Generation... Brakes’ Touchdown... Camera Obscura’s My Maudlin Career... Tom Middleton’s One More Tune... and Manic Street Preachers’ Journal for Plague Lovers... ON DVD: Last Days of the Fillmore... and Johnny Cash’s America... and that’s the buzz for this week’s Modern Rock.
Questions, comments, rants, raves, suggestions on this column or your favorite musicians? Send ‘em to Kristi at modernrocker@gmail.com

 
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