Category: 2017

2017, Music, Uncategorized

I See You (2017) by The xx

This album of downtempo, indie-esque romantic songs apparently belongs to multiple genres I have never heard of. I have heard of, and listened to a lot of genres, so that’s a weird experience for me. But the genres appear to be mostly British, so maybe that’s an explanation.

2017, Music

MASSEDUCTION (2017) by St. Vincent

I saw Annie Clark early in her career on Austin City Limits, showing off her guitar playing and doing vaguely quirky things like playing a “cello guitar.” I really enjoyed it and figured I would check her out. I bought Actor whenever it came out and liked it enough tried to like it more than …

2017, Music

The Wild (2017) by The Rural Alberta Advantage

I first saw The Rural Alberta Advantage at WIMF many years ago. (Possibly before this album came out.) They were appealing in part because of their unique instrumentation – a vocalist and acoustic guitarist, a keyboardist and backing vocalist, and a drummer, nothing else. Also, the drummer played at the front of the stage, sideways, …

2015, 2016, 2017, 2018, 2020, 2022, TV

Better Call Saul (2015)

This prequel to Breaking Bad is like the less violent, dark comedy step-brother to the original show, only this time the titular character isn’t a mild-mannered chemistry teach but rather a conman. So it’s Breaking Badder or Breaking More Bad but with a lot more farce. SPOILERS but of course

2017, Movies

Rumble: The Indians Who Rocked the World (2017, Catherine Bainbridge, Alfonso Maiorana)

This is a survey of famous indigenous musicians to contribute to American popular music and their influence on music. Though a bit of a sponge when it comes to music history I definitely learned some stuff watching it.

2017, Music

Screen Sounds (2017) by The Joe Policastro Trio

The third album by the Joe Policastro trio focuses on movie and TV themes (with one exception) and is, in some ways, even more fun than their second record. Certainly, it’s even more diverse. This time the material is just as varied, if not even more so. I’m particularly delighted by the presence of the …

2017, Books, Non-Fiction

Economism: Bad Economics and the Rise of Inequality (2017) by James Kwak

I agree with a lot of the author says but I’m not sure I like the way he says it. In fact, this feels a little bit like a book I would write, albeit with better sources – a rant about the spread of an idea from someone who is does not have a background …

2017, TV

Norm Macdonald: Hitler’s Dog, Gossip and Trickery (2017, Liz Plonka)

This is a pretty amusing but otherwise very standard standup special from someone who has long been one of my favourite standup comedians. (If I can be said to have favourites because I’m definitely a sketch comedy person.)

2017, Music

Oceanarium (2017) by Deluge Grander

Literally 4 years ago (seriously) the leader of this group sent me a message and asked if I would review this album based on a partial release. I suck and so it’s taken me 4 years to get to it. (In my limited defense, my podcast was still running so I basically listened to nothing …

2017, Movies

The Dawn Wall (2017, Josh Lowell, Peter Mortimer)

This is a pretty good documentary which I might have liked even more had I not stupidly already watched Free Solo first. I would strongly recommend that, if you’ve seen neither and you want to watch both, you watch The Dawn Wall first and Free Solo second. For one, that’s the chronological order of the …

2014, 2015, 2017, TV

The Leftovers (2014)

This is a well-made show with at least one fatal flaw. (And possibly two. I didn’t get that far.) Recommended as ideal for watching during the pandemic we found quite the opposite: that the pandemic actually made the whole thing seem far less believable than it might have seemed when it first aired.

2017, Books

Canadian Whisky, Second Edition: The New Portable Expert (2017) by Davin de Kergommeaux

I’m Canadian but I know every little about Canadian whisky. For most of my adult life I’ve definitely conflated “rye” and “Canadian” and only knew that some whiskies were Canadian through osmosis. Aside from a period of drinking “CC & G” as my go-to cocktail and another period of always having Wiser’s at home (usually …

2017, Movies

La caméra de Claire (2017, Sang-soo Hong)

This is an extraordinarily slight film rendered sophisticated in the eyes of some by its unconventional narrative structure and the presence of Isabelle Huppert. Ever watch a critically acclaimed film where you wonder if the critics and you watched the same film? Well, it’s one of those.

2017, Movies

The Dark Tower (2017, Nikolaj Arcel)

I know nothing about the source material but this is one of those films which feels like things went wrong from the very beginning. Apparently a huge part of the problem is that it is a fairly normal length movie adapted from a novel series that is over 4,000 pages long. So no wonder.

2017, Movies

I, Tonya (2017, Craig Gillespie)

This is a very funny faux documentary about Tonya Harding’s skating career and her relationship with her ex-husband. The cast is excellent as is the sense of time and place. And though some minor dramatic license is taken this is entirely by design, which is worth thinking about giving the uproar this film caused.

2014, 2015, 2016, 2017, 2018, 2019, 2020, TV

BoJack Horseman (2014)

There’s something about animation that gives TV shows (and some movies) a freedom of tone which is not accessible to live action movies and TV. Something about animated characters lets us humans be more accepting of tonal shifts and sight gags. At least I think so. I’m not sure I’ve ever encountered another show more …

2017, Movies

Spider-Man: Homecoming (2017, Jon Watts)

I hate reboots. There are perhaps few things I hate more than reboots than reboots of reboots. And yet, I must admit, this one works. And it works way better than expected. This film is, for me, one of the top 3 MCU movies. It might be the best, actually. Very minor spoilers if you …