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Farewell to waves

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Good pipes, distorted bliss and the end of an era By Benjamin Smith Photo: The Irrepressibles deliver songs of “magical ship” and “glistening mermen” 2013 is already proving to be the busiest of years for your writer. So much so, in fact, that – after copious vodka consumption and consultations with the “I Ching” – I […]

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Dark summer, absurd sex, heart infatuation and definitive veto

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The sounds of a questionable future  By Benjamin Smith New Year’s resolutions are lies, people. Lies! Are you really going to lose weight, quit smoking and become brilliant? No. You are going to stay fat and gross and stupid. Yet you can start 2013 on a slightly improved foot simply by trying something new this […]

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Radiohead, singing children and synthesizers

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OK KID: Worst of all albums, end of all culture  By Benjamin Smith As the proud father of a precocious 10-year-old, I feel I have the experience and wisdom to proclaim, with impunity, that children are terrible. Seriously, they ruin everything. Children piss on your shoes, eat all the cupcakes, vomit at operas. Children ruin […]

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Impish robots, dark stars, flying horsemen and wonderful toys

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Four albums you have to buy or die By Benjamin Smith Hell is holiday shopping. Oh, how I loathe the upcoming exercises in self-induced anxiety and advertising-induced excess. Purchase or perish! For me, it’s bad enough that I don’t know what to buy people anymore; worse still is the fact that I don’t know if […]

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New tunes for end times

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Questionable health, haunted people, wintry pop and electric sex By Benjamin Smith As I write this article, a colossal storm is slamming the East Coast, a toxic presidential election is reaching fever pitch, many are hoping for some sort of apocalypse on Dec. 21 – and I think I have the plague. ‘Tis a bleak […]

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Salt, sketches, caves and cosy cushions

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Four foreign records for the fall By Benjamin Smith So the serpent has been slain – the venomous, endless summer of 2012. Somehow we survived the toil and trouble. Zounds! Let us now bask in the crisp calm of autumn. There’s a turbulent election coming of course, but hush: we need a break from chaos. […]

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Strange Waves

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New sounds from across the pond By Benjamin Smith Your writer is getting married to a wonderful woman on Sept. 7. One of the countless wedding details we’ve obsessed over this summer together concerns the reception setlist. I’m pretty pleased with the final selection: Beatles, Motown, James Brown, disco-era Rolling Stones, early Madonna and even […]

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Strange Waves

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New sounds from across the pond By Benjamin Smith I’m no Nostradamus. Yet I do predict that one night, while sipping absinthe on the Trolley Stop patio, a local musician will question me about this column’s value (or lack thereof). The inquisitor appears hazy in my vision, but I see…yes…I see that he can pass […]

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Strange Waves

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Sounds from Fixers, Marty Graveyard, Benjamin Herman and Hot Chip By Benjamin Smith Forsooth, an awful funk permeates our city, radiating the attitudinal stench of some decaying river-beast. Dayton lies stagnant in the summer doldrums. You can spy it in our scowls, perceive it in our pissant Facebook posts: ennui, apathy, listlessness. Methinks we need […]

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Strange Waves

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New Sounds from Across the Pond By Benjamin Smith Your writer turns 36 on June 15. Now, I don’t expect anything at all from Dayton on this occasion—except a massive music festival. Alas, other than certain local favorites, who would perform? Oasis is done, the Interpol chaps don’t return my phone calls, and I’m pretty […]

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A Lust for Good Sound

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New Albums to Enjoy This Spring By Benjamin Smith I dig sex. Sex is good (usually). It is also synonymous with this season, at least in my mind: warmer weather, less clothing, longer nights. Listen to the birdsong at dawn — you know why the robins chirp. Nature is buzzed and ready to get some. […]

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Strange, Over the Status Quo

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In An Age Of Automatic Factory Pop By Benjamin Smith During high school I played guitar in a three-piece called Mystical Penis. We were terrible. Striving to emulate Pink Floyd, we somehow produced porn music. We also rarely practiced, and performed live only once – in my parents’ backyard for my graduation party. Being 18, […]

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Springfield’s hidden gem

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Referred to as an American Folk Art site, I didn’t know what I expected on my journey to Springfield’s Hartman […]

Debate 7/17: Flag on the Play

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Q: Should persons with certain known behavioral tendencies such as suicide or violence be prohibited from owning guns? Legislatures across […]

Conspiracy Theorist 7/17: Hooray for Domino’s

Year after year, the same roads are torn up and road crews patch them. But they never really repair them. […]

On Your Marc 7/17: Good any day

First, a funny story. Larry Lee, the big tackle from Roth High School, for a number of reasons decided he […]

The Cult, Stone Temple Pilots, and Bush at Rose

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“Rock and roll never forgets,” the classic rock song goes, and Billy Duffy, guitarist and founding member of the British […]