A while back, a craze hit my kids' school. It seemed as though everyone in the lunchroom was bringing in those little green packs of seaweed from Trader Joe's — roasted, salted nori, sometimes flavored with wasabi. (Most of these kids like yogurt and olives, too.) Granted, our town has an idiosyncratic population, and many of the parents are health-minded. It was the kids, though, who couldn't get enough of them.
James Murphy, frontman for the now-disbanded LCD Soundsystem, kneels on the Madison Square Garden stage. <em>Shut Up and Play the Hits</em> documents the band's final show at the landmark New York venue.
Credit Oscilloscope Pictures
Apart from the concert footage, the film also features Murphy being interviewed by Chuck Klosterman, who does a good job of digging into Murphy's psyche.
"This is our last song." You've probably heard words to that effect any number of times at concerts over the years, but when James Murphy said them on April 2, 2011, from the stage at Madison Square Garden, it was a little different.
This wasn't the last song before the encore. It wasn't the last song of the night, or the last song of the tour. This was to be the last song, period, that Murphy's band — the danceable indie-rock outfit LCD Soundsystem — would play together. Ever.
Two black men dance arm-in-arm on a beach. Are they gay? Are they straight? Does it matter?
The photos are part of a found photo collection on Flickr called "Hidden in the Open," curated by playwright Trent Kelley. The vintage photos show African-American men in various affectionate poses. Some seem to be friends, others lovers, but for Kelley the specific details aren't important. For him, the possibility that these images depict more than friendships is what matters.
Sure, The Dark Knight Rises may have cost a reported $250 million, but for all that money, will it have underground lairs, secret submarines, zombie henchmen and killer crocodiles? Will there be a chase every 15 minutes, and cliffhangers that leave you wondering if Batman died in the fiery car wreck, or just jumped out before it went off the cliff? Will our hero drive the Batmobile, or will he opt instead for a sleek, stylish Mercury?
It's great to laugh, but so much of what is labeled "entertainment" is, well, toothless. I'm a carnivore where my humor is concerned — I want it to have meat and bite. The following books will give you plenty to chew on if you like a bit of nourishment along with your kicks.
The discovery in early July of a subatomic particle that may be the Higgs boson — also known as the God particle — puts physicists one step closer to unlocking the secrets of the universe around us. Sam Kean's dynamic, brainy new book, The Violinist's Thumb: And Other Lost Tales of Love, War, and Genius, as Written by Our Genetic Code, tells a story that's no less profound: how geneticists strive to unlock the secrets of the universe within us.
Sir Elton John is constantly remembering his life as a drug addict, whether he wants to or not.
"I still dream, twice a week at least, that I've taken cocaine and I have it up my nose," John tells NPR's Steve Inskeep. "And it's very vivid and it's very upsetting, but at least it's a wake-up call."
John Dramani Mahama is the vice president of Ghana and the author of a new memoir with one of the most eye-catching titles you'll see all year — My First Coup d'Etat: And Other True Stories from the Lost Decades of Africa.
The title refers to the 1966 military coup that overthrew Ghana's first president. Mahama was 7 years old, and his father, a minister in the government, was imprisoned for more than a year. Mahama tells NPR's Renee Montagne that Africa's "lost decades" lasted from the late 1960s to the 1980s, after the initial euphoria of independence passed.
Donald Sobol, the creator of the beloved character Encyclopedia Brown, died last week of natural causes, his family says. He was 87. The first in the Encyclopedia Brown series book was published in 1963, and the series has never gone out of print.
Crime novelist and forensic pathologist Jonathan Hayes has this appreciation of the character Sobol gave young readers.
While other boys got hooked on books about sports legends and race car drivers, there was something about Donald Sobol's boy detective Encyclopedia Brown that spoke to me right away.