Links of the week, 2/3/2012

This week: recording the “Concord” Sontata, illustrating The Handmaid’s Tale, and celebrating primary colors.

  • want to link to Jeremy Denk’s article about recording Charles Ives’s “Concord” Sonata—a fascinating exploration of a truly original American composer, a remarkable piano work, and the trials of the recording process—but The New Yorker placed the thing behind its pay wall, so I’m settling for the magazine’s audio interview with Denk, which is also interesting, especially since it includes musical clips.
  • The weekly lists at The AV Club are always fun, and this week’s is particularly great, with the various writers each offering up a bit of stand-up comedy that strikes them as particularly profound or insightful.
  • A more frivolous—but fun!—list can be found at The Awl, where people confess the movies they can’t help stopping to watch whenever they turn up on TV. The funny thing is that the movies aren’t necessarily good, by anyone’s estimation, which is my experience, too. I’m unable to resist The Devil’s Advocate (so insanely over-the-top!) or the Keira Knightley Pride and Prejudice (so hilariously un-Austen!), and I don’t actually have much respect for either of them.
  • Anna and Elena Balbusso’s illustrations for a new Folio Society edition of Margaret Atwood’s modern classic The Handmaid’s Tale are a perfect blend of beautiful and unsettling.
  • The band OK Go made its name with dazzlingly creative, buzzy music videos, so it’s sweet that the guys have now made one for Sesame Street, teaching kids about primary and secondary colors with all their usual charm.

One Reply to “Links of the week, 2/3/2012”

  1. The first link I clicked on was the new illustrations for “The Handmaid’s Tale” because that book has haunted me ever since I read it. And apparently it has haunted the author herself. On the same web page as the illustrations is a link to an essay by Margaret Atwood, “Haunted by the Handmaid’s Tale”. It is interesting to read about her writing process and her ideas that led to the novel. Here is one thing that she wrote: “I made a rule for myself: I would not include anything that human beings had not already done in some other place or time, or for which the technology did not already exist. I did not wish to be accused of dark, twisted inventions, or of misrepresenting the human potential for deplorable behaviour.” When I remember all that is done in “The Handmaid’s Tale” that statement is particularly disturbing. And one can’t help asking “Could this really happen?”

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