In the past, we’ve enjoyed reading Gawker because of its penchant for taking the piss out of self-important figures. These jaded news-watchers have usually trained their sights on celebrities, moguls and other gasbags, with satisfactory results. But then we looked at a piece about Detroit in Gawker this week and thought, “That’s some seriously stupid bullshit right there.” The “article” in question was the content of a “campfire” chat between various bloggers about what was to be done about Detroit. And it shows that the folks who write for Gawker shouldn’t comment on stuff they obviously don’t know or really care about. That’s because the “article,” which the editors probably thought was a snarky, irreverent, laugh-a-minute chat that would stand on its own as a Gawker post, was a piece of offensive, self-important horseshit. Anybody who knows humor knows that, to be really funny, you only pick on big people, never little ones. But that news hasn’t been passed on to the people at Gawker. They exhibit a passing familiarity with the issues facing Detroit, all while flaming one another and spitballing ideas any Detroiter would find offensive. And watching these well-fed coastal bloggers joking about an underclass they obviously […]
December is a busy month at the Detroit Contemporary art gallery, and there are plenty of music-related goings on. Get the full lowdown here. December 19 (and every third Thursday), check out Creative [dance] Incubator, which “unites experimental movement artists on to present short works and to share creative concepts, explore new possibilities and discuss all things movement. Each incubator is curated and hosted by a member of the Detroit artistic community.” This Saturday, December 14, you can go see the Ulysses Project, “a suite inspired by James Joyce’s modernist classic. The suite digs into the novel’s wide range of themes and the evolution of its protagonists through free jazz, rock, funk, and much more, and uses improvisation to explore Joyce’s stream of consciousness prose. The album was released in October, and was praised by Alterego Magazine as “powerful… fresh, relevant, a success” and by [arts]seen as “a manic journey of eerie beauty.” That same evening, there’s a performance of James Cornish’s Crypticzero, which “explores the relationship between musical and dance improvisation, sonic and physical movement and contrast, with powerful results.” Follow @City_Slang
The only certainty with the Michigan men’s basketball team, as history tells us, is that they have an advantage when playing at Crisler Center. The Wolverines have been more than dominant while at home — losing only twice in the past two years. They’ll need that home advantage this Saturday, because No. 1 Arizona is coming in very hot to Ann Arbor. The Wildcats, who defeated Duke (the same team that handled the Wolverines in Durham) two weeks ago, are undefeated on the year and riding a win-streak over that time that spans some pretty damn good teams. Michigan’s trajectory has been the complete opposite. While it doesn’t have any terrible losses, to have a 6-3 overall record this early isn’t ideal for Michigan. The Wolverines have suffered losses to Iowa State on the road, Charlotte in a neutral site, and Duke on the road. But they haven’t had any true tests at home. The Wolverines have struggled this season — to put it gently. They have no true point guard/leader, and the absence of Trey Burke as floor general has been devastating to the offense. It’s not that there aren’t playmakers — see Glenn Robinson III, Mitch McGary, Nik […]
The first phase of the Movement festival lineup was announced by Paxahau on Wednesday, with Richie Hawtin, Carl Cox and Pete Tong the big names on show. Keen to make some news public following the revelation that there will be an all new DEMF this year, Paxahau initially confirmed their intention to go ahead with Movement within a few hours. According to a new press release, Movement will take place at Hart Plaza on Memorial Day weekend, May 24-26, and the bill will also feature Loco Dice, Action Bronson, and Zeitgeber. “A large number of local artists are included in the announcement today, fortifying the festival’s unwavering support of Detroit and the artists within. This includes one of Detroit’s favorite sons, Grammy-nominated DJ/producer and Planet E chief, Carl Craig; the legendary Jeff Mills; and Techno-soul pioneer, Eddie “Flashin” Fowlkes, just to name a few.” “We really wanted to have some fun with the lineup this year and showcase artists that continue to reinvent the wheel of electronic music as well as a slew of hometown favorites who are legends in their own right,” said Chuck Flask, artist coordinator for Movement Electronic Music Festival. For the full list of announced musicians, […]
It seems fitting that this remarkable man was born on the Fourth of July. His is the story of a true American hero and it should be an inspiration to all of us. Former New York Times columnist Bob Herbert once wrote, “You want a hero? A real hero? I nominate Judge Damon J. Keith of the U.S. Sixth Circuit Court of Appeals.” Mitch Albom does a beautiful job in the foreword of describing the determination and patience that defined this man who became a legal giant. The book takes you from Keith’s humble upbringing through his college years and his service in World War II and continues with his time at Howard University Law School and on to Wayne State University Law School. We are forced to contemplate the unfairness of our own country throughout the twentieth century with many tales of the slights and injustices that this steadfast man had suffered. The authors outline the many obstacles that had to be overcome by a war veteran and also a member of the Bar, just because of his race. Where these two distinctions both served to open doors for a white person they were looked upon with suspicion for […]
When it comes to innovative new dining and drinking spots in metro Detroit, a stretch of Michigan Avenue in Corktown is the hottest spot around, rivaling even suburban strips like Royal Oak’s Main Street or even Nine Mile in Ferndale. Compared to 10 years ago, the metamorphosis has been nothing short of unbelievable. And yet more restaurants are scheduled to open, including a deli, Rubbed, and an outpost of downtown’s successful Bucharest Grill. The latest spot to open is the Detroit Institute of Bagels, which, despite the pretentious name, is a gut-pleasing spot that serves more than bagels, although you can certainly walk in and buy a dozen classic bagels with house-made shmear to go. There are also cookies, daily fresh soups, bagel sandwiches and more. Come springtime, the poppy garden in the back should be a pleasant spot to hang out and enjoy and outdoor meal. Drop in for a taste, 7 a.m.-4 p.m. (closed Thursdays) at 1236 Michigan Ave., Detroit; 313-444-9342; detroitinstituteofbagels.com.
Songwriter, vocalist and renowned bassist Stephen Bruner (better known as Thundercat) is someone who refuses to settle down into one artistic mode...
The March Divide: 'Music for Television'
We’ve learned a few things from February’s Music for Film LP and Music for Television EP, the first two releases by Jared Putnam’s The March Divide...
Islands & Tigers: 'Failed Attempts'
"If I could choose from a thousand lovers, I would surely choose you." These telling words begin “Do You Wanna Come Back Home?” — the stellar first track...
Surfer Blood: 'Pythons'
Three years after Surfer Blood took the indie-rock world by pleasant surprise with their wonderful debut, Astro Coast, the Floridian foursome is back with a more...
Wavves: 'Afraid of Heights'
From his days making shit-caked beach-gaze virtually by himself, Wavves’ Nathan Williams — who now records and tours with Jacob Cooper and Stephen Pope...
Justin Timberlake: 'The 20/20 Experience'
Whatever the reasons for and results of his seven-year musical hiatus, Justin Timberlake’s return is an exultant record that delivers on the promise of...
Lonely Horse celebrates EP release
San Antonio's Lonely Horse is a two-piece tribe comprised of Nick Long and Travis Hild. They make dark folk-rock which crackles with bluesy riffs...
David Bowie: 'The Next Day '
In the 10 years since David Bowie’s last release, 2003’s Reality, he has faced some documented and rumored health issues that left many of us...
The Offbeats: 'F' (EP)
The San Antonio four-piece The Offbeats — comprised of brothers Bryan, Colin, and Sean Foster along with guitarist Eric Romasanta — play a...
The March Divide: 'Music for Film'
Music for Films, the debut album from San Antonio's Jared Putnam (formerly of The Conversation) and company, leaves the listener lost in the anticipation of...
Something Fiction: 'Mycology (EP)'
Young Saytown head-trippers Something Fiction are back with an EP of new songs and remixes from 2011's patient and contemplative Botany EP. While each song...
The Rosedale Highs: 'Go Down'
Rosedale Highs sound as if your favorite '90s pop-punk band and your favorite '60s garage-pop group had a child who spent far too much time with Elvis Costello. On...
Pink: 'The Truth About Love'
Pink gets credit here for sticking to her guns — after all, she's always been a chameleon in style and a damaged postmodern romantic in content. But it is worth...
Matchbox 20: 'North'
I'll make this as quick and painless as possible. First of all, Matchbox 20 still exists (yes, the “push you around” guys). Secondly, they have a new record and...
Animal Collective: 'Centipede Hz'
Fierce and fiery, alien and nostalgic in one gasp, Animal Collective's ninth album is an amalgamation of the most gratifying idiosyncrasies and musical themes from...
Yeasayer: 'Fragrant World'
With their third album, Brooklyn's Yeasayer prove once again that they have no interest in artistic stillness. Picking up — in part — where 2010's Odd Blood...
Andrew Espinola: 'Into the Drink' EP
Newly transplanted from Austin to San Antonio, singer-songwriter Andrew Espinola makes direct and refreshing songs that are best classified as alt-country or...
Local band to watch: Last Nighters
A remarkably cohesive whole with parts born in disparate locales, Last Nighters is a San Antonio band with a far more fully realized sound that you'd expect from a...
Last Nighters: 'Animal Room'
Animal Room, the debut LP by San Antonio’s Last Nighters, plays like something of a concise history of modern Southern indie music. From blues to pop to country...
The Very Best: 'MTMTMK'
The marriage of London-based production/DJ duo Radioclit and Malawian singer Esau Mwamwaya, The Very Best has yielded both deeply soulful and...
Bad Breaks: 'Bad Breaks'
Bad Breaks really captures my attention at the moment of transition into "Seppuku," the album's second (and best) song. It's a jarring transition that reminds me to...
Nas: 'Life is Good'
Though universally considered one of the greats, Nas has worked, to some extent, in the shadow of Biggie and 2Pac since his rapturous emergence in 1994.
Marcus Rubio: 'None of the Birds: Songs 2009-2011'
Even as local music gadfly Marcus Rubio's latest album satisfies my longing for pre-2000s Bright Eyes, it ranges across a breathtakingly broad spectrum of musical flavors. Neurotic songs about...
Dirty Projectors: 'Swing Lo Magellan'
As subtly disorienting an experience as Swing Lo Magellan is, it represents a move to center by indie rock’s most unflinchingly avant-garde outfit.
Chris Maddin: 'The Tiago Splitters'
Chris Maddin's backing band on this album, for whom it is named, is something of a Saytown super-group. The most important thing we get, however, from...
Something Fiction: 'Botany' EP
Thanks to their amorphous explorations of genre and musical color, Something Fiction is a difficult group to pin down, placing themselves willfully and...
Dent May: 'Do Things'
In a recent complaint from his twitter account (@dentmay), Dent May unwittingly summed up his new album’s character: “Call me chillwave one more time and...
Dent May will Do Things to you
Born in Mississippi and now back to bloom where he was planted, Dent May’s aesthetics and attitude are carefree and colorful in a uniquely southern way.
Marissa Nadler: 'The Sister'
Very few contemporary artists, or listeners for that matter, have the patience for music like Marissa Nadler's languid and heartbreaking folk. The music seems...
Live & Local: Vincent Vega
Though the line-up was all-around swell for the Rock Your Socks Off Festival at The Korova last Friday night...
Jack White: 'Blunderbuss'
For those who think of Jack White as a rock god turned eccentric music mogul peddling odd (and awful) one-off collaborative singles from a gaudy yellow...
The Mars Volta: 'Noctourniquet'
The Mars Volta is back. Back from a three-year hiatus, back from the bad Ouija trip of two albums too full of concept, and back to where they left off with...
Cloud Nothings: Attack on Memory
In Attack on Memory, Dylan Baldi (recording as Cloud Nothings) has made his most refreshing — even prescient — work. From blistering yet beautifully trance-inducing opener...
Atlas Sound: Parallax
There is an eye of the storm quality that attends this album, like other Atlas Sound outings before it...