One of my favorite bands, Anathema, just released their latest effort, titled The Optimist. I’ve starred it on Spotify, but haven’t really had time to listen to it. (A cursory once-over got my hopes up, though.) As it happens, I’m old-school and like support the artists I like and to own my music, but what I’m not is a purist about formats. I figured I’d buy it digitally. However, once I got to their web store, I found I couldn’t. In 2017. Now, obviously there’s Amazon and iTunes, to name but two purveyors of lower-quality MP3 files, but still … why couldn’t I buy the digital edition directly from the band? Again: in 2017.

11.06.2017 • Permalink

Art is now, above all, purchasable – and this commodification is apocalyptic in precisely the opposite way of the exposition. In the classic exposition we displayed objects as a means to celebrate the possible future or the material potential of the present. In the gallery, as in the auction house, we still celebrate exorbitant sales as an expression of apocalyptic insecurity, but the only recapitulation here is the affirmation of purchasing power – of the current and future investment prospects of Basquiat, of a world possibly without materials, of a world entirely composed of capital. There is no celebration of aesthetic or material potential, or a celebration of possible advance, only the grotesque spectacle of meaningless wealth reinforcing itself – the market hollowing out and infecting one of our last bastions against the market’s pull.

The Big Basquiat Sale Is Art’s Capitalist Apocalypse

28.05.2017 • Permalink

In light of recent events, here is The Beautiful South with Manchester.

24.05.2017 • Permalink

Dead at 52, Chris Cornell of Soundgarden (and Audioslave, I suppose) fame.

18.05.2017 • Permalink
Mindhorn

Mindhorn (2016)

Underholdende krimkomedie hvor en falmet TV-stjerne blir tilkalt av politiet på Isle of Man for å hjelpe dem å fange en morder ved å spille sin gamle rolle en gang til. Alt går selvfølgelig galt: den mistenkte er egentlig uskyldig og vår helt blir plutselig den ettersøkte. Mindhornklarer (naturligvis) ikke nå samme høyder som f.eks. Hot Fuzz, men med spilletid på 85 minutter, kommer vitsene kjapt nok til at ikke rekker å bli lei heller. Julian Barratt spiller Thorncroft med akkurat nok hybris og patos til at han vi både ler med og av ham. (At Steve Coogan har en finger med på produksjonssiden er ikke overraskende; Thorncroft ville vært skreddersydd som gjest på Knowing Me Knowing You with Alan Partridge.)


  • Regi: Sean Foley
  • Med: Julian Barratt, Essie Davis, Steve Coogan
17.05.2017 • Permalink

Trump’s alleged screw-up with the Russians reveals yet again what we have learned many times in the last four months: The successful operation of our government assumes a minimally competent Chief Executive that we now lack. Everyone else in the Executive Branch can be disciplined or fired or worse when they screw up by, say, revealing classified information or lying about some important public policy issue. But the President cannot be fired; we are stuck with him for 3-1/2 more years unless he is impeached, which remains a long-shot.

Source: Bombshell: Initial Thoughts on the Washington Post’s Game-Changing Story

As David Brin keeps pointing out: who benefits? The leak may well come from the Russians themselves. Trump is set to meet the NATO brass soon, and he basically just told them “I cannot be trusted”. Europe must no decide how NATO proceeds, absent its arguably most important member.

Update: I stand corrected.

16.05.2017 • Permalink