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Diary of a Mad Composer

The Metropolitan Opera is decadent and depraved. That's not entirely the Met’s fault: the house is a reflection of the values of its milieu, the world of grand opera. But the Met helps to create and shape this world, which means that the institution has the power (through money, influence, and its place in the public imagination) to affect the confluence in which it stands.

Brooklyn Rail Highly Selective Music Events

A thoughtful, discerning, and carefully compiled list of the most notable, promising and unique musical events for the month of June in New York City.

Wadada Leo Smith

After interviewing Wadada Leo Smith, the composer, performer, and theorist of the Association for the Advancement of Creative Musicians-fame, I struggled to summarize what it was like to approach his catalog for the first time (which I had done, somewhat ashamedly, in preparation for our interview).

Nick Cave's Great Gamble

Inspired by John Berryman’s The Dream Songs, Cave intersperses vivid images with a narrative record of life on the road—from backstage to onstage and after the shows, a catalogue of the most and least glamorous aspects of touring and performing.

Gothic Revival Revised

Cynics may be forgiven for imagining the Brooklyn Folk Festival as an expression of the prevailing mania for old-time kitsch. Examples of this phenomenon—in apartment décor, food production, fashion, booze culture, and so on—need not be rehashed here. Thankfully, the festival isn’t one of them.

Circuit des Yeux, In Plain Speech

With Thrill Jockey, Fohr has been afforded resources that have opened her up to larger opportunities. “Up until this album, I’ve been one person trying to do everything,” Fohr tells me. “It feels like a huge step forward.”


The music was mesmerizing and the only thing I longed for was that it were somewhere in Spain in a dark, smoky café or basement, where all the passion and intimacy could be felt [...] There is a point where the artist transcends the context in which he/she appears, and such is the case with great Flamenco.


The Brooklyn Rail

JUNE 2015

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