Letters 11-23-2015

Cheering From Petoskey While red-eyed rats boil fanatically up from the ancient sewers of Paris to feast on pools of French blood, at the G20 meeting the farcical pied piper of 1600 Pennsylvania Avenue thrusts a bony finger at the president of the Russian Federation and yells: “liberté, égalité, fraternité, Clinton, Kerry--Obamaism!”

The Other Mothers And Fathers Regarding the very nice recent article on “The First Lady of Yoga,” I have taken many classes with Sandy Carden, and I consider her to be a great teacher. However, I feel the article is remiss to not even give acknowledgement to other very important yoga influences in northern Michigan...

Drop The Blue Angels The last time I went to the National Cherry Festival, I picked the wrong day. The Blue Angels were forcing everyone to duck and cover from the earsplitting cacophony overhead...

Real Advice For The Sick In the Nov. 16 article “Flu Fighters,” author Kristi Kates fails to mention the most basic tool in our arsenal during Influenza season... the flu vaccine! I understand you might be afraid of being the victim of Jenny McCarthyism, but the science is there...

Keeping Traverse City in the Dark Our environment is our greatest asset. It sustains our lives; it drives our economy. We ignore it at our peril. Northern Michigan Environmental Action Council (NMEAC) has submitted letters of concern to both the city commission and planning commission regarding the proposed 9-story buildings on Pine Street. We have requested an independent environmental assessment with clear answers before a land use permit is granted...

All About Them Another cartoon by Jen Sorensen that brings out the truth! Most of her cartoons are too slanted in a Socialist manner, but when she gets it correct, she hits the nail on the target! “Arizona is the first state to put a 12-month lifetime limit on welfare benefits.” That quote is in the opening panel... 

Unfair To County Employees It appears that the commissioners of Grand Traverse County will seek to remedy a shortfall in the 2016 budget by instituting cuts in expenditures, the most notable the reduction of contributions to various insurance benefits in place for county employees. As one example, the county’s contributions to health insurance premiums will decrease from ten to six percent in 2016. What this means, of course, is that if a county employee wishes to maintain coverage at the current level next year, the employee will have to come up with the difference...

Up, Not Out I would like to congratulate the Traverse City Planning Commission on their decision to approve the River West development. Traverse City will either grow up or grow out. For countless reasons, up is better than out. Or do we enjoy such things as traffic congestion and replacing wooded hillsides with hideous spectacles like the one behind Tom’s West Bay. At least that one is on the edge of town as opposed to in the formerly beautiful rolling meadows of Acme Township...

Lessons In Winning War I am saddened to hear the response of so many of legislators tasked with keeping our country safe. I listen and wonder if they know what “winning” this kind of conflict requires or even means? Did we win in Korea? Did we win in Vietnam? Are we winning in Afghanistan? How is Israel winning against the Palestinians? Will they “take out” Hezbollah...

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4Play: Various Artists, Danger Mouse and Sparklehorse, Various Artists, Interpol

Kristi Kates - September 13th, 2010
Various Artists - Yo Gabba Gabba: Music is Awesome - Filter U.S.
The innovative TV series Yo Gabba Gabba mixes up modern-day music (and
bands) with groovy puppets and retro styling to relate simple but
necessary life lessons to anyone who watches. Viral videos often
circulate on YouTube and elsewhere of the many music, tv, and movie
talents that guest star on the show, but this is the first time that
fans can snag the original songs as performed by the Gabba cast and
special guest bands. This release (with hopefully more to follow)
includes the show’s popular theme song, as well as tracks by The Shins
(“It’s Okay, Try Again”), The Roots, Money Mark (“Robo Dancing”), and
Biz Markie’s hilarious “Biz’s Beat of the Day.” Cool.

Danger Mouse and Sparklehorse - Dark Night of the Soul - Capitol
Prior to his passing, Mark Linkous (aka Sparklehorse), worked with
Danger Mouse on this album, which sadly ended up being Linkous’ last
collaborative project. Melding moody psychedelic pop and shoegaze-y
rock, the pair of musical friends also welcomed in a host of guest
performers to make this a diverse, eclectic, and appealing set; “Just
War” includes vocals from Super Furry Animals’ Gruff Rhys, “Pain”
features Iggy Pop on vocals and lyrics, “Insane Lullaby” showcases
James Mercer of The Shins/Broken Bells, “The Man Who Played God”
welcomes back Suzanne Vega, and other tracks include contributions
from The Cardigans, The Pixies, and Julian Casablancas.

Various Artists - Sunshine Pop - Ace UK
Twenty-six happy, and yes, sunny tunes in all inhabit this set of
chart-topping hits from the mid to late ‘60s, songs that have
influenced legions of indie-popsters and producers alike. The landmark
“happy” tune, The Turtles’ “Happy Together,” kicks things off,
followed by Tommy James’ “Crystal Blue Persuasion,” The Lemon Pipers’
“Green tambourine,” The Cowsills’ “The Rain, The Park, and Other
Things,” and other singalongables by The Beach Boys, The Mamas and The
Papas, and The Tokens, among others. Sugary, yes - catchy, definitely.

Interpol - Interpol - Matador
Four albums in, and Interpol is sticking to their musical guns -
namely, their own unique, darkened version of modern art rock. Heavier
on percussion than previous sets (perhaps due to the mix influence of
Alan Moulder), the set veers between spiky indie pop-rock to ’70s
metal-lite, never going off the rails, but almost always barreling
with one wheel off the ground around that next corner. “Lights,” “The
Undoing,” and “Barricade” focus on the melodies, while “Memory Serves”
and “Success” aim more at the overall aggressive mood and ambiance of
their respective songs; these aren’t always immediately accessible
tracks, with their walls up and lights flashing, but they definitely
make an impression.

  • Currently 3.5/5 Stars.
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