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Monday, July 06, 2015, 9:34 p.m.
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Philip Martin

Stories by Philip

CRITICAL MASS: Young makes music he wants, not always a good thing

posted: 07/05/2015 2:10 a.m. Discuss

Politics often seems the enemy of art, for politics forbids the admission against self-interest or the equivocal gesture, the acknowledgment of any of the gray territories in which art dwells. Politics requires staying on message, toeing the line and keeping discipline. If politics is about doing what is possible, if it's about taming dreams into substance, then art is about exploring the ineffable reaches of the invisible realm.

You can't always get what you want

posted: 07/05/2015 1:56 a.m. Comments 3

Most of us learn early on that we don't always get what we want. Part of growing up is bumping up against our own limits, discovering that no matter how much we try and want, no matter what the inspirational posters and the Hollywood movies tell us, there are some things we can never achieve. We can only run so fast, jump so high or think so deep.

Personal Space

posted: 07/04/2015 1:54 a.m. Discuss

Yslan Hicks Where I live: In the midtown area of Little Rock, with my husband, writer Bill Jones, and our three geriatric cats, Lulu, Serena and Samantha.

Review: The Overnight

posted: 07/03/2015 1 a.m. Discuss

Patrick Brice's little movie The Overnight was one of the highlights of this year's Sundance Film Festival. It has become notorious in some circles, mostly for a quick poolside scene that occurs in the film's second act. If you've read anything about the movie, it's likely you know what I'm talking about, and if you haven't I'd rather send you to Google than spoil the mild surprise for the potential audience.

Brews, pies -- all Damgoode

posted: 07/02/2015 1:52 a.m. Discuss

Families have been riven over pizza preference. Brother set on brother, cities razed and fields salted. To acknowledge a favorite risks disturbing pitchforked sects convinced theirs is the one true pie. So divisive is the subject it is best avoided, or shrugged off with a cliche: pizza, like sex, is pretty good even when it is indifferently offered and unwarm.

The world's this way because we like it

posted: 06/28/2015 2:44 a.m. Comments 5

We like it this way. We don't admit it, we say we hate it, we throw up our hands in expressions of outrage, but we secretly like it when something terrible happens to people we don't know.

On Books: New Wave a cultural 'condition'

posted: 06/28/2015 2:01 a.m. Discuss

After a recent piece on Greil Marcus' Mystery Train ran in this place, a reader directed me to King Adkins' New Wave: Image Is Everything (Palgrave Macmillan, $95), which was recently published as part of the Palgrave series on pop culture, music and identity.

Critical Mass: LA punk trilogy Decline goes digital

posted: 06/21/2015 2:12 a.m. Discuss

"I'm gonna wake up with another funny haircut and more tattoos."

Father and son, being men together

posted: 06/21/2015 1:54 a.m. Discuss

A young man I know lost his father a couple of weeks ago. It was cancer, and the father was 49 years old.

Review: Angels and demons

posted: 06/19/2015 1:50 a.m. Discuss

Brian Wilson is sui generis -- a preternaturally gifted composer who apparently can hold symphonies in his head, a reluctant rock star who at the height of the Beach Boys' fame removed himself from the spotlight to brew up remarkable music in a lab. And for a long time, he felt like an American tragedy, one of those holy ones we lost to drugs or madness -- a bath-robed Leviathan playing piano in his living room sandbox.

Review: Seymour: An Introduction

posted: 06/19/2015 1:46 a.m. Discuss

Let us now praise Ethan Hawke. A little bit.

Critical Mass: All TV series die; lucky ones get a finale and do it right

posted: 06/14/2015 3:19 a.m. Discuss

There is a Sufi legend about a mighty king who commanded his wisest men to deliver him a magic ring, one that would make him happy when he was sad. After some deliberation, they presented him with a simple band on which these words were etched: "This too will pass."

Anonymity in the surveillance state

posted: 06/14/2015 1:54 a.m. Discuss

There was a surreal moment captured on a camera and disseminated through the usual social media channels last week. As the Cleveland Cavaliers were leaving the court at Oracle Arena in Oakland, Calif., after upsetting the Golden State Warriors in the second game of the NBA final series, a female fan sitting in some very expensive seats hurled an unprintable insult at Cavs' superstar LeBron James (who had just played a magnificent game).

Review: Lambert & Stamp

posted: 06/12/2015 2:23 a.m. Discuss

I did not think a documentary about The Who could possibly surprise me.

The chipmunk on the bedroom floor

posted: 06/07/2015 3:11 a.m. Discuss

I was showering the other morning when I heard the soft scuttle of paws on hardwood outside the folding door. Nothing alarming, no barks or yips, but just enough bother to make me lean my head out and ask the unanswerable: “Girls?”

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