Film Review: Inside Llewyn Davis

Inside Llewyn Davis

Inside Llewyn Davis written and directed by Joel and Ethan Coen (CBS Films, StudioCanal, Anton Capital Entertainment, R, 104 min) Starring Oscar Isaac, Carey Mulligan, Justin Timberlake, and John Goodman. Quit If I could offer a piece of advice to aspiring musicians, it would one, simple terse statement: “Quit.” I don’t mean to be brutally negative, but the music business is not a place for anyone hoping toward a sustainable a career. When I was younger, I had dreams of being in a touring band. Many of the CDs I bought were from underground punk, hardcore, and ska acts. Life on the road seemed glamorous, a pretty awesome career. But truthfully, most of the bands I followed broke up because… Read More →

Album Review: The Weatherman

The Weatherman by Gregory Alan Isakov (Suitcase Town Music, 2013. 41 minutes) Gregory Alan Isakov is a singer-songwriter. Born in Johannesburg, South Africa, he immigrated to the United States as a child, and was raised in Philadelphia. He began touring with a band at the age of 16 and has been influenced most by the music of Leonard Cohen, Kelly Joe Phelps and Bruce Springsteen. He now resides in Colorado.  Heavy Mellow I was sitting in my car driving down the road in the middle of the night. I knew there were a few albums that I needed to get into, so I put on Isakov’s newest release, The Weatherman. I found it a suitable audio journey as I braved the dark freeways of the night. At the same time, I found that Isakov’s… Read More →

Album Review: The Beast in its Tracks

The Beast in its Tracks by Josh Ritter

The Beast in its Tracks by Josh Ritter (Pytheas Recordings, 2013. 44 minutes) Josh Ritter is an American singer-songwriter born in Moscow, Idaho. A graduate of Oberlin College, Ritter sang open-mic nights and worked odd jobs until he was discovered by Glen Hansard. Ritter has released 7 full-length albums and numerous EPs. A Gig, Most Difficult In my opinion, the hardest gig in show business is that of the singer-songwriter. Typically alone on stage without much accompaniment, the singer-songwriter can’t hide behind anything. When you have a band, the focus of the audience wanders from member to member. A backing band can bring energy to a mundane song; it can hide meaningless lyrics. But when you are alone on stage,… Read More →

Film Review: Searching for Sugar Man

Searching for Sugar Man

Searching for Sugar Man written and directed by Malik Bendjelloul (Red Box Films, Passion Pictures, Canfield Pictures, PG-13, 86 minutes) Starring Sixto Rodriguez and Stephen “Sugar” Segerman. Global Globalization With the advent of the internet, globalization has become truly global. Everyone has the ability to connect with anyone. In business, you can accept a client from half way across the world. In relationships, you can fall in love and date on Skype. There’s no hiding in the modern world. But before the internet, humanity encountered a unique era, connected but far apart. In the 40 years after World War II, the commercial jet became a staple of travel. With some money saved, the world becomes your oyster. Yet at the… Read More →

Album Review: Lonesome Dreams

Lonesome Dreams by Lord Huron (Iamsound Records, 2012. 45 minutes) Lord Huron is an American indie folk group from Los Angeles. They are signed to Iamsound Records and released their debut album in 2012. To Innovate or to Perfect: That is the Question? What’s better: the innovator or the perfector? We are often wowed when an artist appears, utilizing a new technique. Ernest Hemingway popularized short, staccato sentences where the content left out is as important and meaningful as what remains. However, since his time, many authors have used this technique, some perhaps to better effect. Likewise, consider Jimi Hendrix. His use of heavy distortion and lightning riffs revolutionized the sound of guitar. But is he the best guitarist ever?… Read More →