Andrei Strizek

Music | Musings

Weekly Review


"The Good War: How America's infatuation with World War II has eroded our conscience." Based on Chris Hayes' "The Good War on Terror," with updated numbers.

The message (of Saving Private Ryan) is clear. In the great struggle for the future of the free world, the intellectual cannot be trusted. His concern for the laws of war means he is weak and cowardly, and will contribute to defeat. Only the true soldier can win the war. This is the ethos of the Cult of the Soldier, which would come to entirely dominate our politics in the years to follow.

"The Virtuoso: A Tech Pioneer's Final, Unexpected Act" (from The New Yorker).

As the show opened, Sun entered at the back of the auditorium, in costume as the fiddler. His cap covered his scalp; the dim lighting concealed his damaged eye. He made his way down a set of shallow steps onto the semi-darkened stage while playing the haunting opening solo. After intermission, the orchestra played the Williams film music, and Sun rose from his seat in the orchestra and moved to center stage. He launched into the cadenza, playing with a passion and a virtuosity I hadn’t heard from him before. He blazed through the runs and easily landed the highest notes. When he finished, there was a standing ovation, even as the orchestra resumed. Sun smiled, acknowledging the applause. Then he blew a kiss to the crowd and the spotlight dimmed.


10:04 by Ben Lerner. A bildungsroman, meta-novel full of delicious use of language and quotable quotes. (The title taken from Back to the Future.) Below, talking about how old movies - such as Planet of the Apes - portray the future.

Nothing in the world, I thought to myself, is as old as what was futuristic in the past.

Jazz Wedding Song

Cecelia drifts her blue scale down
Nails against brass keys glittering
Up in note-smoke/cracks a man
So he gets up on a table to sing

Holysong, fast-water-rushalong-song
To jazzlike heaven/godly lick
Flickers love tunes high as brushfire
Where the flood-low drums cackle & kick:

Love run/love fly/love run long
Gallop apace/thought-speed/light-size
Bring wind joyheartswelling & song
Bat down day/make the stars rise

Love song Cecelia blow hot thunder/
love run round in the belly of the drum/
love come ride on husbands’ shoulders/
love come

by zachary cohn

2016 In Review: My Favorite Music

2016 may have been a disaster of a year in many regards, but it was not lacking when it came to music releases. There were a lot of albums I enjoyed immensely, many I liked but didn't listen to enough, and countless that I'll have to catch up on in 2017. I can't make an "objective" list because I missed out on a lot of releases, but below are my 21 favorites from 2016, as well as several runners-up that I didn't spend enough time with; links to reviews and how to listen are included.

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2016 In Review: My Favorite Performances

I saw 92 shows, concerts, operas, etc., in 2016 (including seeing some performances more than once). That number feels very small for me, but it's about average since I moved to New York. (I saw about 100 in 2015.) 2 shows a week isn't too bad! I saw quite a range of productions: big Broadway hits, small cabarets, regional theatre in Birmingham, Alabama, small off-Broadway shows that I'm still thinking about ... Below, in alphabetical order, are my 21 favorites from 2016.

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