I Wanna Be Literated! 122
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Socialism . . . Seriously: A Brief Guide to Human Liberation by Danny Katch “Socialism… Seriously” might be a small book, but boy is it powerful. Unfortunately , ever since I decided to bone up on my Socialist/Communist/Anarchist literature I’ve had to piece together the basic idea of each movement from various other books by various other authors. I’m still looking for that perfect Anarchism and Communism book that lays it all out and I can recommend to friends, but...

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Friday, 26 August 2016
I Wanna Be Literated! #121
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On Power and Ideology: The Managua Lectures by Noam Chomsky   I have been fascinated with the Sandinista revolution in Nicaragua ever since learning about it from the Clash and reading Stephen Kinzer’s book Blood of Brothers. Can I admit that I really enjoyed the book and saw the Sandinista revolution with mixed feelings? Sure I can. Then, I happened to Google the author and Noam Chomsky (because I couldn’t calm the doubting beast) and found out that Chomsky has...

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Friday, 26 August 2016
I Wanna Be Literated! 120
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Propaganda and the Public Mind by Noam Chomsky, David Barsamian   The world is a better place because it has Noam Chomsky and his books. And it’s in that spirit that Haymarket books has taken up the task of putting out a series of new Chomsky books and republishing and updating some new ones for our benefit. And Propaganda and the Public Mind is a good place as any to start with this collection. Composed of his interviews with David...

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Thursday, 25 August 2016
Vinyl Vlog 161
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A deeper look at the grooves pressed into the 2016 vinyl reissue of the Psychotic Supper LP by Tesla. It’s a little hard to believe now but, twenty-five years ago, the music business seemed to be getting suddenly and violently pulled in several directions at once. At that time, glam metal and hard rock were still pumping out some pretty important albums – Guns N’ Roses would release both Use Your Illusion albums in ’91, Metallica released The Black Album,...

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Thursday, 18 August 2016
Vinyl Vlog 160
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A deeper look at the grooves pressed into the Basses Loaded LP by (The) Melvins. It’s mind-boggling how such a prolific band can be so under-appreciated. Krist Novoselic of Nirvana fame has said that the Melvins are the only band left standing from the grunge-rock cacophony of the Nineties (take that, Pearl Jam), and even the new kids like Mastodon have gone on the record as saying they’re one of the greatest bands on earth. Of course, the Melvins don’t...

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Monday, 15 August 2016
Vinyl Vlog 159
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A deeper look at the grooves pressed into the Guitar Boy LP by Bloodshot Bill. The moment I first saw Bloodshot Bill will forever be burned into both my eyeballs and my memory. It was at the Middle East in Cambridge while waiting for the Jon Spencer Blues Explosion to go on. And here comes this guy, wearing a robe, hair slicked back, armed with nothing but a guitar, bass drum and hi hat. What followed was thirty minutes of...

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Sunday, 14 August 2016
Vinyl Vlog 158
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A deeper look at the grooves pressed into the vinyl reissue of the Twin Peaks Original Soundtrack. The current rage of soundtracks on vinyl has definitely contributed to the fun of collecting vinyl. Although there are a lot of companies putting out extraordinary releases, the king of the crop currently has to be the good folks over at Mondo. The attention to detail is simply top notch, with releases that serve to charm in both sound and visuals; absolutely kickass...

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Sunday, 14 August 2016
Adam and The Ants – [2CD]
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Artist: Adam and The Ants Album: Kings of the Wild Frontier (35th Anniversary 2CD reissue) Label: CBS/Legacy/Sony Music While most critics maintain that The Ramones’ debut album and Nevermind The Bollocks, Here’s The Sex Pistols rank as the two most important music and culture-defining artifactsin the punk rock pantheon, that’s really just a shortcut to thinking. The truth is that one particular album stands out as a subversive document which doesn’t overtly attempt to stand out from the pack –...

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Thursday, 11 August 2016
Vinyl Vlog 157
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A deeper look at the grooves pressed into the vinyl reissue of Hater’s self-titled debut album. I must confess that I had never heard of Hater before Ben Shepherd put out In Deep Owl a couple of years ago. I was really, really taken with that album and had been thrilled at the prospect of taking an interview with him when the opportunity came up; in fact, I jumped at it. It was during that interview when I learned about...

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Tuesday, 09 August 2016
Descendents – [Album]
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The Descendents Hypercaffium Spazzinate (Epitaph Records) The differences in the performance and presentation of Hypercaffium Spazzinate from every other Descendents album are subtle but evident from the moment “Feel This” screeches in to open the album. There, while the tempo of the drums and guitar are precisely at the speed fans would expect them to be (at that of an over-caffeinated blur, of course), the tone in Milo’s voice has changed to reflect a different demeanor from that of any...

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Thursday, 04 August 2016