Current DJ: shwang
Cold Beat New World from War Garden (Like LTD) Add to Collection
by Kyle Sanders
There I was, sitting in an AMC theater surrounded by my fellow film nerds--er, um, critics--settling down, getting comfortable, offering up some friendly chit-chat, when a moment we were all too familiar with took place: the dimming of the lights.
We were quickly advised to turn off our cell phones as the large screen lit up before us, large letters foreshadowing the table of contents of a made up magazine.
The distinctive voice of Oscar-winning actress Anjelica Huston boomed through the theater, relaying to us the history behind The French Dispatch of the Liberty, Kansas Evening Sun. It's sole mission: to "bring the world to Kansas."
The critics around me chuckled at a montage of distinctively edited clips gussied up in Wes Anderson fashion, no doubt familiar with the inner workings of a professional yet frenzied publication. It dawned on me just what a perfect start this was to the next two weeks of my life: The French Dispatch brings the world to Kansas, and the Chicago International Film Festival brings the world of cinema to me.
And so begins the 57th Annual Chicago International Film Festival! This is my eighth year attending, and it's always exciting to see what new titles from around the globe are competing for international acclaim and attention.
Various Artists – Cameroon Garage Funk (Analog Africa)
Common – A Beautiful Revolution Pt. 2 (Loma Vista)
by CHIRP Radio DJ and Features Co-Director Mick R (Listen to his most recent shows / Read his blog)
DPCD is the name of a sonorous, soft, and elegant folk project that graciously calls Chicago home. The group is lead by Alec Watson, who fills the song’s lyrics with ruminations on connection, compassion, and salvation.
Drawing on his past in the Evangelical Church he has a unique and thoughtful approach to the world, its problems, and the ways that we relate to each other as human beings.
Most striking of all though, is his tenderness of presentation, which can’t help but remind one of Sufjan Stevens, or even Conor Oberst, at his most vulnerable.
Alec and his bandmates will be releasing their debut on October 1, an album conspicuously titled It's Hard for a Rich Man to Enter the Kingdom of God. The album is not shy or penitent about its appeals to spiritualism and mysticism, and neither is Alec himself.
As you will no doubt be able to tell, he’s given his faith a great deal of thought over the years, and at this point in his inquisitive journey, we find him more devoted than ever.
He may not love everything about his past, but understanding how he can transpose what was good about it into a better future for him and others is part of what motivates the project as a whole.
I was able to catch up with Alec to talk about his band and their new record over email. His responses were enlightening and thoughtful in ways that often caught me off guard. You can read his earnest responses to my inquiries below:
Purchase It's Hard for a Rich Man to Enter the Kingdom of God
by Bradley Morgan
The times they had a-changed when Bob Dylan had entered the MTV era.
Approaching 40, the legendary singer-songwriter’s mark on music and popular culture was already defined and well-documented. Since his early days shuffling between coffee houses and nightclubs around Greenwich Village during the waning days of the American folk music revival during the early 1960s, Dylan had, in the words of his former lover Joan Baez, burst on the scene already a legend.
He very quickly gained prominence providing an integral voice during the Civil Rights movement before almost as swiftly tuning out and plugging in, shocking audiences with an electrically masterful run of generation-defining albums until rampant amphetamine use evaporated his thin, wild mercury sound and he sought peace through marriage and domesticity before losing it all and finding Jesus.
The chameleon-like Dylan had already lived several lifetimes during his two-decade long career so far, and the promise of economic grandiosity and technological innovation within Reagan’s America during the dawn of the 1980s would prove to be an interesting backdrop for the man previously dubbed the voice of his generation to find himself once again.