Blue Valentine writer and director Derek Cianfrance’s latest film The Place Beyond the Pines is, if anything, a study in what Robert Penn Warren, legendary 1940s author of All the King’s Men, calls “the awful responsibility of Time.” We begin with Ryan Gosling’s character Luke Glanton, a reckless circus-performing motorcyclist. Seemingly out of nowhere, Luke has great responsibility thrust upon him when an old flame from an upstate New York carnival stop steps back into his life with his infant son.
The first time I saw the band Yuck perform live, I had never heard of them. They were simply the group warming up for Smith Westerns on a Friday night at a hole in the wall in downtown Nashville. I saw their name on the marquee above the venue and thought “Yuck” sounded weird and off-putting. When they took forever to set up on stage, I went from skeptical to hostile: “Who do these guys think they are? They’re just the warm-up act!”
I got 99 problems, and all of ’em’s being happy,” bursts out Tyler Okonma—better known by his stage name Tyler, the Creator—on “Pigs,” one of the many disturbing looks inside the mind of this 22 year-old rapper on his new album Wolf. The pop-culture riff with a demented personal twist is Tyler’s signature move, and one that somehow keeps the listeners coming back for more.
A couple weeks ago, legendary shoegaze band My Bloody Valentine released their first album in twenty-two years. The press surrounding the release of m b v was as extensive as any I’ve seen for a musical release in quite a long time. Why? What’s the big deal about this band coming back after so long?