Letters

Letters 07-21-2014

Disheartened

While observing Fox News, it was disheartening to see what their viewers were subjected to. It seems the Republicans’ far right wing extremists are conveying their idealistic visions against various nationalities, social diversities or political beliefs with an absence of emotion concerning women’s health issues, children’s rights, voter suppression, Seniors, Social Security, Medicare and Medicaid...

Things That Matter

All of us in small towns and large not only have the right to speak on behalf of our neighbors and ourselves, we have the duty and responsibility to do so -- and 238 years ago, we made a clear Declaration to do just that...

An Anecdote Driven Mind

So, is Thomas Kachadurian now the Northern Express’ official resident ranter? His recent factfree, hard-hearted column suggests it. While others complain about the poor condition of Michigan’s roads and highways, he rants against those we employ to fix them...

No On Prop 1

Are we being conned? Are those urging us to say “yes” to supposedly ”revenue neutral” ballot proposal 1 on August 5 telling us all the pertinent facts? Proposal 1 would eliminate the personal property tax businesses pay to local governments, replacing its revenue with a share of Michigan’s 6 percent use tax paid by us all on out-of-state purchases, hotel accommodations, some equipment rentals, and telecommunications...

Fix VA Tragedy

The problems within the Veterans Administration identified under former President Bush continue to hinder the delivery of quality health care to the influx of physically wounded and emotionally damaged young men and women...

Women Take Note

I find an interesting link between the Supreme Court Hobby Lobby and the crisis on the southern border. Angry protesters shout at children to go home. These children are scared, tired, hungry and thirsty, sent to US prisons awaiting deportation to a country where they may very likely be killed...


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4Play: The Magic Numbers, Various Artists, Sara Bareilles. Ed Kowalcyzk

Kristi Kates - August 30th, 2010
The Magic Numbers - Runaway - 101 Distribution
A pair of brother-sister, er, pairs, The Magic Numbers are working hard to revive the ‘60s folk/flower-power era, from their dense, well-balanced harmonies (which, in addition to their configuration, often see them being compared to the Mamas and the Papas) to their groovy lyrics and subject matter. “Why Did You Call?” and “Throwing My Heart Away” are peppy and ready for a few tambourine shakes, while “Restless River” and “I’m Sorry” focus more on the instrumentals behind the vocals, but there’s a good balance of both approaches.



Various Artists - Scott Pilgrim vs. the World Original Motion Picture Soundtrack - ABKCO Records
Whether or not you like this comic book-adapted movie - which has its funny moments and its “did they really need to do that?” moments - the soundtrack is nonetheless an interesting one. A variety of musicians bring the comic story’s bands “to life” in the movie, including tracks from Frank Black, The Rolling Stones, and Beachwood Sparks - but the most interesting element is the fact that Beck went back to his punky days and wrote the songs for character Scott’s own band, “Garbage Truck” being one of the best here. (Beck’s songs are listed on the album under the character-band name of Sex Bob-omb.”) Classic rocker anthems and several other newbie tunes round out the set.


Sara Bareilles - Kaleidoscope Heart - Epic
You might best know Bareilles, to date, from her radio single “Love Song”, with its catchy-poppy refrain and advert-friendly sound. Now she’s back with her sophomore set, which has already spawned another catchy single, “King of Anything,” on which Bareilles says she’s channeled her aggrevations over people throughout her career giving her “unsolicited advice.” In addition to her singles work, Bareilles’ newest collection of songs shows off her ability to blend sarcastic and direct admonitions with pretty tunes and interesting piano work on tracks like “Gonna Get Over You,” “Say You’re Sorry,” and “Machine Gun.”



Ed Kowalczyk - Alive - Megaforce
Kowalczyk was perhaps best-known as the frontman of big-time rock band Live, for which he’d been the singer for nearly two years. 20 million albums sold later, and Kowalczyk was at a loss for what to do next. After a few years of contemplation - and a life mostly lived away from the music biz - he’s back with his first solo album, which melds his distinctive vocals with music that’s often Live-like, and just as often not. “Drive,” the opener, is perhaps most reminiscent of Kowalczyk’s old band with its quiet verses and heavy chorus; but other tracks, like the catchy “Stand,” the lyrically-personal “In Your Light” and the more experimental “Fire on the Mountain,” showcase Kowalczyk’s growth.

 
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