@voyou Disgusting of May to pretend to attend the obviously fake "Armed Forces Day" in order to get out of celebrating National Pralines Day. 24 Jun 17 Reply Retweet Favorite

Sensational communism

I generally find out about TV shows either through links to thinkpieces posted on Twitter, or through gifsets posted on Tumblr. I suspect the gifsets have tended to be a more reliable guide to good shows than the thinkpieces, a suspicion that was reinforced when I finally got round to watching Sense8 recently. As the gifsets promised, it’s great, but it’s great in a particular way – formally challenging, conceptually fascinating – that I’m surprised I didn’t see more thinkpieces about it. Read more↴


The Official Chart for January 2017

So, maybe I’ll continue to do this regular music post thing, but once a month? And rather than struggling to find something to say about every track I hear that I like, I’ll just write about the tracks I know I’ve got something to say about, and stuff the rest on a Spotify playlist (and […]

The Official Charts of 2016

In no particular order, and somewhat arbitrarily selected from a bunch of other great stuff that came out in 2016 (and also collected in a Spotify play list) Top tracks Karó, “Silhouette.” Florrie, “Real Love.” A bass line like a thunderstorm. Carly Rae Jepsen, “Fever.” “My breath was lost when you said ‘friends’ / well that […]

The official chart for August 21

New Britney! When I first heard “Do You Wanna Come Over?“, I thought “Britney doing Girls Aloud,” although actually the guitars are more “Sweet Dreams my LA Ex”; either way, this has something of the sound of mid-2000s British pop, the golden age of popism, a sound Britney didn’t embrace at the time (though there is the […]

The Official Chart for August 14

Last two weekends I was in France, which is why I’ve skipped a couple of my regular music posts. While I was there, I read the French edition of Elle, which seemed keen to undermine the stereotype that French people are fashionable, by advocating “urban pirate” as a key look for Autumn; and to undermine stereotypes about French […]

The Official Chart for July 24

Doing this weekly music post thing has encouraged me to seek out more new music, which is good, but is a problem when a record comes along that requires more than a week to really get to grips with. Such a record is Róisín Murphy’s new album Take Her up to Monto, one of the strangest records […]


LRB · Adam Smyth · Ropes, Shirts or Dirty Socks: Paper

When I started seeing a lot of hype about “digital humanities,” I joked that I should start branding myself as an expert in “wood pulp humanities.” Of course I soon realised that the joke was on me: wood pulp humanities, that is, humanistic inquiry into the materiality of books, is a fascinating if rather niche field of [...]


Initially, Udo’s aim was to devise a method for determining who would reach heaven. He assumed each person’s soul was composed of independent parts he called “profanus” (profane) and “animi” (spiritual), and represented these parts by a pair of numbers. Then he devised rules for drawing and manipulating these number pairs. In effect, he devised [...]

Melodrama On Loop – The Awl

When I think of Melodrama, I don’t think Taylor Swift’s 1989 (2014) or Carly Rae Jepsen’s E•MO•TION (2015) — both arguably breakup albums of a sort — so much as Harmony Korine’s Spring Breakers (2013). Lorde’s and Korine’s narratives chime together; the euphoria of the party before the solo depression that follows. Even the acoustic renditions of Britney Spears’s [...]