Letters

Letters 07-25-2016

Remember Bush-Cheney Does anyone remember George W. Bush and Dick Cheney? They were president and vice president a mere eight years ago. Does anyone out there remember the way things were at the end of their duo? It was terrible...

Mass Shootings And Gun Control The largest mass shooting in U.S. history occurred December 29,1890, when 297 Sioux Indians at Wounded Knee in South Dakota were murdered by federal agents and members of the 7th Cavalry who had come to confiscate their firearms “for their own safety and protection.” The slaughter began after the majority of the Sioux had peacefully turned in their firearms...

Families Need Representation When one party dominates the Michigan administration and legislature, half of Michigan families are not represented on the important issues that face our state. When a policy affects the non-voting K-12 students, they too are left out, especially when it comes to graduation requirements...

Raise The Minimum Wage I wanted to offer a different perspective on the issue of raising the minimum wage. The argument that raising the minimum wage will result in job loss is a bogus scare tactic. The need for labor will not change, just the cost of it, which will be passed on to the consumer, as it always has...

Make Cherryland Respect Renewable Cherryland Electric is about to change their net metering policy. In a nutshell, they want to buy the electricity from those of us who produce clean renewable electric at a rate far below the rate they buy electricity from other sources. They believe very few people have an interest in renewable energy...

Settled Science Climate change science is based on the accumulated evidence gained from studying the greenhouse effect for 200 years. The greenhouse effect keeps our planet 50 degrees warmer due to heat-trapping gases in our atmosphere. Basic principles of physics and chemistry dictate that Earth will warm as concentrations of greenhouse gases increase...

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4Play: Elvis Costello, The Acorn, Nellie McKay, High Dials

Kristi Kates - January 24th, 2011
Elvis Costello - National Ransom - Hear Music
Recorded in a mere 11 days, Costello teams up with uber-producer T-Bone Burnett for his latest, which consists of a new tracks and plenty of guest appearances, including Vince Gill, Leon Russell, and Marc Ribot. It’s standard Costello as far as the compositions themselves, but there are hints of interesting new inflections here and there, like the Naw’lins-influenced “Jimmie Standing in the Rain,” the countryfied “I Lost You,” and the folky, backcountry-meets-jazz sound of “A Slow Drag with Josephine,” as enhanced by mandolins and Costello’s distinctive voice.




The Acorn - No Ghost - Bella Union
Recorded in an isolated cottage in northern Canada, where the band focused by leaving cell phones and TVs behind, The Acorn’s latest allows a little of their countryside surroundings into the mix, in which insects sounds and wild creaks can be heard in the backgrounds of many of the songs. Opener “Cobbled from Dust” sets the tone with its warm rural feel added to The Acorn’s instrumentally experimental tunes. The title track is one of the standouts, as are the lighter “Misplaced” and, by constrast, the heavier “Crossed the Wire.” It’s a solid accomplishment from a band with a lot of skill.




Nellie McKay - Home Sweet Mobile Home - Verve
McKay’s first album of original tunes since 2007 finds the quirky singer-songwriter in a mischievous, eclectic, and droll mood. Recorded in a variety of locales, including NY, LA, and Jamaica, the set, per McKay’s usual, mixes a diverse palette of sounds and influences, all brought together by McKay’s unusual, idiosyncratic vocals. Included here are tracks like the reggae-spun “Caribbean Time” and the appropriately-dubbed “Unknown Reggae” the jazzy, quizzical “Dispossessed,” the danceable, neo-soul “No Equality,” and the balladry of “Coosada Blues.”



High Dials - Anthems for a Doomed Youth - RQ
After building a studio in an old building previously inhabited by the Canadian Navy, High Dials got to work on their latest set, utilizing the building’s ballroom for the echoey sounds found on many of these ‘60s-influenced tunes. The album has a very live feel to it - no doubt due in part to the recording locale - which serves the songs well, from the buoyant “...Love Made Me Insane” and “I’m Over You (I Know It’s True)” to the R.E.M.-esque “Chinese Boxes.” It’s definitely poppier than earlier sets, but that might help broaden this talented band’s fanbase.

 
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