An occasional blog about populist politics and popular music, not necessarily at the same time.
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Monday, June 11, 2018
Music: current count 29818  rated (+32), 344  unrated (+5).
Not much to say about music this week. Just sort of feeling my way around the new computer. One thing I noticed is that it's much easier to go straight to a download/stream from email now that I'm doing both on the same machine. In particular, I used to get a lot of CDs from the world music publicist Rock Paper Scissors, but for the last few years all they've sent was email, which I almost never dealt with. But a couple records below (Diali Cissokho, Ginkgoa, Parliament) came out of their mail. I also made a point of thumbing through the July issue of Downbeat and looking up most of the reviewed records I didn't receive. Neither of those strategies led to great discoveries, but they did turn up some pretty good records.
Overall count for the week was solid. Most likely it will fall off next week, as we're expecting company for a big event on Wednesday, 4:30-7:00 PM, at McKnight Art Center on the campus of Wichita State University: Sacred Space Exhibition Reception. This is a set of seven large portals: doorways opening to views of the world through various prisms of religion. The artwork was originally constructed and painted back in 2002, under the direction of the late Diane Thomas Lincoln, with my sister, Kathy Hull, taking a major role. I have write ups and some pictures from the original development and exhibit here. The artwork has been in storage for much of the intervening time. Before her fatal accident this spring, my sister had campaigned to remount the exhibit, and she conspired with my nephew Mike Hull to produce a documentary on the work. This project won't come off quite as originally intended, but Mike will be here to film what he can, and we'll try to be helpful.
The exhibit will be on view, free to the public, 9 A.M.-5 P.M. at the Clayton Staples Gallery, second floor of McKnight Art Center West, through August 31, 2018.
Coincidentally, I just heard this week that another of Kathy's major projects -- a mural based on the Mexican Day of the Dead celebration on the south side of a laundromat at Arkansas and 25th St N here in Wichita -- is going to be painted over sometime soon. I only found one Google image search picture, here, as it was being painted (Linda Jordan left, Kathy right). I also have a finished photo in my archives, as well as a picture of Kathy holding her sketch in front of the work-in-progress which at the time appeared in the Wichita Eagle. Ram Lama Hull posted a couple more recent photos on Facebook: here and here. Ram commented:
Mike has already photographed a lot of Kathy's art, and I expect he will be doing more this week, including some "last shots" of the mural.
Actually, I guess I do have a couple of brief notes on music. Michael Tatum has been doing one of those "10 records in 10 days" things on Facebook. His first three picks recapitulate my own evolving tastes in the years just before I started writing rock crit: The Byrds, Sweetheart of the Rodeo; Rhino's disco compilation, Turn the Beat Around (1974-1978); and Roxy Music, Siren. I would have picked Stranded, and tried to work in Al Green, I'm Still in Love With You, and Brinsley Schwarz's New Favourites, but Michael is definitely onto something. Given that I've archived his work in the past, I've started to squirrel away these new posts.
I'll also note that Robert Christgau's latest Expert Witness has two A records that I gave very solid A- grades to some time back: Parquet Courts: Wide Awaaaaake!, and No Age: Snares Like a Haircut. I see now that I screwed up the news roll notice for that post -- sorry about that. I've been making slow progress fixing my local copy of the website, but I'm still a long ways away from being able to do a general update. (Same, really, for my own websites.)
I'll also note that I played the new Lily Allen album (No Shame) a half-dozen times today without being able to grade it A-. May still happen: I've decided to back off and give it some time, but it's clearly not going to be my album of the year, as her last two were. Not that I don't still adore her, but only a few songs reinforce that (like "Waste"). On the other hand, a couple songs are very bland, and "Cake" is way too much of a cliché. And only on the last play did it sink in that "Three" is meant to be in the voice of her daughter. Sure, makes sense that way, but doesn't sound right.
New records rated this week:
Recent reissues, compilations, and vault discoveries rated this week:
Old music rated this week:
Unpacking: Found in the mail last week:
Miscellaneous Album Notes: