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New in the media library

A couple of weeks ago I picked up a CD and a book that have enriched my life somewhat.

The CD is The Shepherd's Dog by Iron and Wine. This is one you likely won't hear much on the radio, unfortunately, because it's not going to fit neatly in Clear Channel's narrow slots, but it's a mostly mellow blend of several influences. It starts in the folk/acoustic realm, adds bits of world, rock, jazz, and alt-country, and somehow sounds a little bit like Lindsay Buckingham in spots, believe it or not. No drum kits, from what I can tell, and that gives it a real fluid, groovy sound. Yes, I said groovy -- one review I read dismissed it as hippie music, but it's not to be so easily dismissed. In my head it kind of fits in the space between Death Cab for Cutie and Vuelta-era Richard Shindell. I like it lots. Dave now likes it too, and he's quite the epicure where music is concerned so that says something.

The book is Fun Home: A Family Tragicomic by Alison Bechdel. She's the cartoonist behind the legendary Dykes to Watch Out For, but here she writes and draws a memoir of her relationship with her father, who came out as gay soon after she came out as lesbian, and then died in an accident before they could explore their "new understandings" together. It's well-written and drawn, describing not just the family but life in their small town and the heady urban gay life of the mid-1970s. It's very affecting. It also won many awards and accolades from the mainstream press when it was published in 2006.

Finally, a DVD note: I finally watched the movie The Fast Runner, which came out in 2001 and I bought a couple of years ago. If you watch only one movie in the language of the Inuit this decade, well, this one will be it. Filmed on location in the Canadian Arctic, it's a retelling of an Inuit legend of good, evil, and community life. It's harrowing in parts, seems very well researched, and the cinematography is beautiful. It was hailed as a film achievement when it was released, no less so because it was shot with an all-Inuit cast and mostly Inuit crew.

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( 2 comments — Leave a comment )
georgelicious
Nov. 11th, 2007 05:41 pm (UTC)
That book sounds great, I just ordered it from the library.
songdogmi
Nov. 12th, 2007 06:30 am (UTC)
There's some nekkid people in it. And a lot of it takes place in a funeral home (a.k.a. "Fun Home"). But don't let that stop you. I read it all in about 2 1/2 hours, straight through.
( 2 comments — Leave a comment )

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