Monthly Archives: December 2014

Some stuff I wrote in 2014

Thanks, as always, to my editors for making me use the right words and paying me on time: Reed Fischer at City Pages; Jayson Greene at the gone-too-soon Wondering Sound; Rob Harvilla, first at Spin and then at Deadspin; and Chris Weingarten, who asked me to write so many blurbs for Rolling Stone this year he deserves a Christmas card from my student loan servicers.

Stephen Malkmus & the Jicks Both Mock and Slyly Embody Middle Age on ‘Wig Out at Jagbags,’ Spin, January 2. “You can maybe stay cool into your forties, but don’t bet on it.”

Bassekou Kouyate and Ngoni Ba at Cedar Cultural Center, City Pages, January 27. “A ngoni isn’t much to look at. A four-stringed lute that resembles a children’s canoe paddle, it’s a centuries-old-old prototype for more familiar and expressive instruments.”

Eric Church, ‘The Outsiders,’ Wondering Sound, February 11. “Church seemingly voices a larger, shared sense of loss, that free-floating 21st-century American suspicion that someone, though we can’t agree who, has swindled us out of what we deserve.”

Serenity Never: Lydia Loveless Brings a Gritty, Witchy Arsonist’s Zeal to ‘Somewhere Else,’ Spin, February 13. “Desire lodges in her chest like a phlegm-clot.”

Body/Head at the MIA, City Pages, February 28. “When you go to the art museum, you’re gonna get some art.”

Perfect Pussy at 7th Street Entry, City Pages, March 31. “Nobody wants to be the kind of asshole who calls a punk show ‘impressive.'”

Against Me! at First Avenue, City Pages, April 3. “What sort of outsiders are you wallet-chain boys really ready to accept?”

Lady Gaga at Xcel Energy Center, City Pages, May 21. “Something awful happened to Lady Gaga last year: It was decided she was no longer famous.”

Bruno Mars at Xcel Energy Center, City Pages, June 23. “During ‘Billionaire,’ I was distracted by two sisters, maybe about 7 and 10, trying to decide whether they could sing ‘fucking’ with their mom one seat over.”

Why I Love So You Think You Can Dance, Dopey (Or Dead) Dads And All, Deadspin, July 16. “Less than 10 minutes into the first episode of the 11th season of Fox’s So You Think You Can Dance, a contestant’s dad was onstage dancing to ‘Blurred Lines.'”

100 Best Singles of 1984: Pop’s Greatest Year, Rolling Stone, September 17. “Cyndi’s not reading Blue Boy for the articles or worrying she’ll go blind because glaucoma runs in the Lauper family.”

Garth Brooks at Target Center, City Pages, November 7. “Detractors call Garth’s gift of convincing an arenaful of admirers that he exists solely for their delight ‘pandering,’ because an attempt at seduction always seems pathetic when you rebuff it.”

Usher at Xcel Energy Center, City Pages, November 19. “‘We were expecting a lot more abs.'”

2014 Music Box Sets: A Guide For The Bemused And Disgusted, Deadspin, November 28. “Rock box sets are indefensible cash-sponges that will endure for as long as baby boomer parents require Christmas presents.”