Wednesday, June 2, 2010

New Column: All Alone

I am currently on vacation, resting in the sweet East Coast sunlight. I know, you're envious, but don't worry, I wrote you a little something so you won't miss me too much. This week's column is about solo performances, just one man and an instrument. Those men are Steve Hogarth and Michael Roe, and their instruments are piano and guitar, respectively. And both of these records will rip your heart out.

Also, I bring my top 20 of the 2000s list in for a landing, and (behind a spoiler link) share a 3,000-word essay on the final episodes of Lost. Hope you enjoy it. As always, click on over to read the column, then head back here to leave me a comment.


  1. Great review of Lost and the finale. I agree with almost everything you said. It was a beautiful conclussion to a great show.

  2. Am I the only one who felt the ending was a "Sixth Sense" rip-off? I always had the nagging feeling the writers got "lost" themselves and had no idea how the series would end.That's just me.

  3. I think there was a certain amount of improvisation as the show went on, but the producers tied everything together convincingly for me. I care more about character and theme than I do plot threads, though.

  4. I haven't listened to "Illinois" for a couple of years - but your review got has got me ready for a re-visit.

    It IS wonderful, although it wouldn't make my album of the Noughties (it wouldn't even be my favourite by Sufjan, that's the sublime "Seven Swans").

  5. Hey Oreb,

    Thanks for sticking with the countdown. I love Seven Swans, but Illinois just trounces it for ambition and sweeping majesty, in my opinion. What's your best of the decade?

  6. Oh wow - can I give you my top 5?

    Ry Cooder, "Chavez Ravine"

    Marillion, "Marbles" (with my name in it :))

    The Drones, "Havilah"

    James McMurtry, "Just Us Kids"

    Suzanne Vega, "Beauty and Crime"

    I couldn't really seperate these - and for sure I'll think of another before I've stood up.

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  8. Go easy with The Drones Andre - they have, in my humble opinion, some of the best lyrics in modern music - but it may be difficult to tell if you're not used to our Australian accent! The music has a lot of depth, but an angry, raw exterior. Cross Capt. Beefheart with Midnight Oil...

    (They are often criticised for the Oz-twang in the vocals - odd, since we in Oz don't criticise US or UK bands for having the accents they have!)