Alt-J’s Weird Sweetness and the Buzzwords of Job Listings

Alt-J performed in the KeyArena at Bumbershoot, a giant venue that, as the keyboardist Gus Unger-Hamilton put it, “may be the biggest place we’ve ever played in”. I was in the crowd, amid packed flocks of people (most of whom seemed younger than me…or else I look and feel older), during their show. Alt-J’s genre […]

The Name of the Girl from the Corner Cafe – Part 2

V. (The present.) But today, today was going to be different, he said to himself. He was going to stride up to the counter firmly once he caught her eye, say something pleasant and personal, order something sophisticated, and then engage her in witty conversation as she rang him up. He had carefully read through several […]

The Fascinating Depths: Yeezus, Vampire Weekend, and Mad Men Season Six

The experience of looking down from a great height is intoxicating. After all, why do people climb mountains, if not to look down from a great height? (Unless they’re really into sweat and thin air.) Whether literal or figurative, depths are fascinating. I recall submerging in Lake Chelan’s limpid green waters, ten feet down, and […]

Mad Men Season 6

A friend of mine once observed that she’d stopped watching Mad Men because she had begun to identify too much with the characters. Whether true or not, there is something of a seductive quality to the characters on Mad Men. Not only are they beautiful people living in an enviable fashion, with peerless interior decoration, […]