Page 1

fortnightly student magazine

Minneapolis Museums

p. 7

volume 17 — issue 1

Edge of Life

p. 14

My Banshee

p. 10

Q&A: Astral Samara

p. 16

Summer of Sound

p. 11

The Politics of Nature

p. 19


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Katie Heywood From the series “Transparencies”


VOLUME 17, ISSUE 1 EDITORIAL: Editor-in-Chief Managing Editor Cities Editor Voices Editor Music Editor Online editor Copy editors Multimedia Editor Multimedia Producer

Emma Klingler Jake Steinberg Annie Burdick Kassidy Tarala Liv Martin Alex Wittenberg Chris Shea Kikki Boersma Carson Kaskel Olivia Heusinkveld

Editorial Interns: Abbie Clapp, Alexander Cain, Becca Most, Claire Becker, Ella Cashman, Emma Dill, George Miller, Hannah Haakenson, Jenny Felton, Megan Hoff, Morgan Benth, Olivia Hultgren, Simon Batistich, Tala Alfoqaha

BMMEBZ

PRODUCTION: Executive Director Production Manager Creative Director Finance Manager PR/Ad Manager Social Media Manager PR and Advertising Associate Art Director Designers

Web Manager Distribution Manager

Holly Wilson Olivia Novotny Kate Doyle Rakshit Kalra Aaron Christianson Grace Steward Sophie Stephens Katie Heywood Andrew Tomten Kellen Renstrom Megan Smith Laurel Tieman Cassie Varrige

Production Interns: Darby Ottoson (PR) Art Interns: Emily Hill, Jade Mulcahy, Jaye Ahn, Lauren Smith, Mariah Crabb, Natalie Klemond, Peyton Garcia, Sophie Stephens, Stevie Lacher

THIS ISSUE: Š2017 The Wake Student Magazine. All Rights Reserved. Established in 2002, The Wake is a fortnightly independent magazine and registered student organization produced by and for students at the University of Minnesota. The Wake was founded by Chrin Ruen & James DeLong. Disclaimer: The purpose of The Wake is to provide a forum in which students can voice their opinions. Opinions expressed in the magazine are not representative of the publication or university as a whole. To join the conversation email eklingler@wakemag.org . The Wake Student Magazine 126 Coffman Memorial Union 300 Washington Avenue SE Minneapolis, MN 55455

Writers Alaina Friedrich, Ariana Wilson, Claire Becker, Claire Redell, Emma Dill, Gabby Granada, Grace Steward, Hannah Kloos, Holly Wilson, Jack Hedlund-Fay, Jacob Steinberg, Karl Witkowiak, Kayla Martin, Laura Beier, Lisa Persson, Liv Martin, Liza Gorman-Baer, Lydia Crabtree, Megan Hoff, Nikki Pederson, Olivia Heusinkveld, Olivia Novotny, Simon Batistich, Art 1 Carson Kaskel, 2 Jaye Ahn, 3 Ruby Guthrie, 4 Lauren Smith, 5 Stevie Lacher, 6 Laura Beier, 7 Morgan Wittmers-Graves, 8 Peyton Garcia, 9 Katie Heywood, 10 Jade Mulcahy, 11 Sophia Mazullo, 12 Sophie Stephens, 13 Katie Heywood, 14 Ruby Guthrie, 15 Jade Mulcahy, 16 Stevie Lacher

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wink! one page magazine 1

Amazoneapolis

One city under Amazon conceived by social media and dedicated to the prospect that all people need same day delivery BY GRACE STEWARD Picture this: a world without instantaneous delivery of your favorite flavor of ramen. A world without a one-click option, without HBO streaming, without same-day drone delivery. Through the echoes of this hopelessness, a brand was born manifesting the new normal.

How do you walk going Westward on the Washington Ave Bridge? BY HOLLY WILSON & ALAINA FRIEDRICH

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Today, standing on one of many observation decks looming above the city and looking at the rebranded Amazonealis skyline, this terrace is one of many privileges enjoyed by the Amazon compeers of the week. Looking out over the conurbation, the point system created to measure success is reflected in the new metropolis.

Lawful Good

Neutral Good

Chaotic Good

Right lane north side (inside bridge), always glares at Trump panel

Walks on the south side outside no matter what, loves to look at the river

Bikes with helmet no matter what, waves at all their friends

Lawful Neutral

True Neutral

Chaotic Neutral

Just takes the Campus Connector

Walks inside no matter what

Will walk in whatever path gives them the ability to keep exact foot time to their favorite song

Lawful Evil

Neutral Evil

Chaotic Evil

TOUR GROUPS

Walks in the far left lane no matter what, always disrupting foot traffic

Longboards inside, might wear Tapout graphic tee in 2017

Fifty years ago, this reality may have been considered a dystopia. Today, the city of Amazonealis refuses to see the unscrupulous meritocracy of ranking its people in a city wide poll of social engagement. Every purchase, like, share, and smile amounts to social capital needed for a functional life. “Earth’s Most Customer-centric Company,” has become “The Most Humancentered Company in the Milky Way”. Before the technological boom, the city was without the commodity that keeps us all alive: ramen noodles. The University of Capitalist Achievement, formerly the University of Minnesota particularly suffered from these dark times. Watching the Foshay Tower, rebuilt into a shining beacon of Amazon echoes company manifesto: “There is no breakthrough, without breakdown.”

OCTOBER 9—18


INSIDE

UPCOMING EVENTS

6

Letter from the Editor

8/17—10/29

10/15

7

Minneapolis Museums for those looking to escape the world

We The People

Stories from people who aren’t typically represented in the language of national unity

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The Comedian

MN Museum of American Art

9

Sad Boi and Juliet: A Review

8/19—4/29

10

My Banshee

I Am Somali

Three visual artists from the Twin Cities whose work explores identity, recalls exile, and celebrates resilience

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Edge of Life

16

Q&A: Astral Samara

9/13—10/22

18

Unite and Conquer

Man of La Mancha

19

The Politics of Nature

21 22

Triple Rock Social Club

B

Summer of Sound

Trump, Kaler, and the end of DACA

w/ Ayvah, Story Night

10/18

11

20

William Within - farewell show!

A

University Wind Ensemble Concert Tedd Mann Concert Hall

MIA

Production from Theater Latté Da places the old tale in a contemporary context A

Ritz Theater

10/10

“It” and the Politics of Horror

Pixies

Six Reviews

Palace Theater

w/ Mitski

10/11 Arts Quarter Festival

B C

Visual art, dance, music, and theatre showcasing student and faculty talent from across the University Arts Quarter on West Bank (Regis, Rarig)

C

THE WAKE

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Letter from the Editor Thanks for picking up The Wake. Students, this is a magazine for you. I can’t emphasize that enough. We’ve shaken things up a bit this year. As you can well see, the magazine has gotten a facelift. In the pages that follow, you’ll find a revamped music section with more reviews, and a new section for showcasing student-submitted creative writing, poetry, and art. Elsewhere, we’ve expanded our online content with multimedia storytelling and Point/Counterpoint, where both sides of an issue get to share the stage. I’m incredibly excited for what The Wake will be this year: a place for great stories, art, and conversation. Looking forward, I can’t help but look back—to the founding of our little periodical. Two students—James Delong and Chris Ruen—founded The Wake in 2002 in “the wake” of 9/11. It was a scary and confusing time to be a student, but those two realized the campus needed a place for dialogue—to talk about what was going on in the lives and minds of the student body. Our time is similarly turbulent, and The Wake still stands as a conduit for the campus’s voice. Our founders’ words in their initial statement about The Wake still define us today: “Our campus, our nation, our world is a complicated place. All we really want to do is talk about it. Talk about what’s good, what’s not good, what matters, what doesn’t matter. Then, hopefully, some people will read it, love it, hate it, argue it, agree with it, frame it, burn it, and write us letters about it—that will be that.” Echoing that sentiment, we have a new place for responses at The Wake to keep the conversation going. So please, if you read something in the following pages that you really love or adamantly disagree with, let us know what you think! We have a new email just for that: responses@wakemag.org. Thanks again for picking us up, and remember, as the cogs of campus continue to turn, The Wake is watching. Jacob Steinberg Managing Editor

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OCTOBER 9—18


CITIES

Minneapolis museums for those looking to escape the world A review for those looking to take a break with the quiet and beautiful spaces of Minneapolis BY OLIVIA HEUSINKVELD If you’re looking for a space of healing, what you might really need is a day at the museum. Life can be overwhelming, and taking an afternoon to stand in quiet spaces looking at art and history can be an incredible opportunity to reset. Luckily, Minnesota is home to many amazing museums and artistic spaces. Below you will find a review of three such museums based on their suitability as a place to practice a little self-care. Minneapolis Institute of Art (Mia): 5/5 stars I’ve been visiting the Mia for years, and in all honesty, it established the bar to which I hold most other museums. Although there is a suggested donation, there is no required fee to gain access to one of the largest art museums in the country. Spanning three floors lined with marble floors and pillars, there are always places to go if you want to look at art alone, even on a busy day. As a bonus, one of the visiting exhibitions at the time of my visit was Artist Dave Muller’s “Now Where Were We?”, which is a temporary re-installation of Mia’s contemporary art galleries. The various works of contemporary art are displayed across multiple rooms, with Muller’s hand-painted murals on the walls behind them. The exhibit is very colorful, and it felt like walking through a children’s picture book. In addition to all Mia has to offer inside, there is also a lovely patio and mini garden in the back. This little blooming oasis can serve as a great way to reset by reconnecting with nature. “Now Where Were We” is on display until December 3.

Hennepin History Museum: 2/5 Located just down the street from the MIA, the Hennepin History Museum is a small museum located in the George Christian Mansion. This is the only museum on this list that requires an entry fee, but student rates are comfortably priced at $3. Upon entering the museum, I was greeted by a friendly woman with a thick Minnesotan accent. She gladly told me about the history of the museum, offering me water and letting me know about upcoming events. It was nice to have someone so friendly to interact with, but I can imagine on a day when I didn’t want to talk to anyone, this museum could become a little annoying. The special exhibit on display is “Eat Street at 20,” an oral history exhibit celebrating 20 years of the part of Nicollet Avenue that is home to a variety of restaurants. Each restaurant featured is given its own written article about its history, complete with pictures, menus, and other artifacts related to the restaurant. In the center of the room is an array of spices to smell, which isn’t exactly aroma therapy but could potentially fit the bill in a pinch. Upstairs, there is a small gallery of Minnesota landscape and cityscape paintings. It was calming to see all of the different art styles depicting Minnesota, and to think about all the people who have made a home in the Minneapolis area before me. Wandering through this upstairs exhibit was calming, as it was separate from the crowds downstairs. However, the highlight of the museum was a bench in this upstairs exhibit that sat opposite five vertical windows that overlooked the beautiful neighborhood.

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Weisman Art Museum: 3/5 stars Weisman is conveniently located on the University of Minnesota campus, and offers free admission. The main downside to the museum is that there were a lot of workers walking around and talking during my visit, which prevented me from ever feeling completely immersed in the art. Additionally, the visiting exhibit at the moment is “What a Drag!”, which primarily features the Tom Hoover 1966 Top Fuel Dragster, and although it is admittedly an impressive vehicle, it isn’t a piece of art that really resonates with me. However, despite its smaller size, the Weisman does offer a wide variety of visual art styles, so you should have no problem finding a piece that speaks to you. “What a Drag!” is on display until November 19.

“Eat Street at 20” is on display until February 25.

THE WAKE

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CITIES

The Comedian A vignette BY JACOB STEINBERG She’s on in five, but Sage Troolin has a stomach ache. Sage is no stranger to being in front of a crowd, but years of performing haven’t immunized her to stage fright. It’s generally downright terrifying speaking in front of a crowd, especially a crowd that’s there to laugh. For most, anything else is more appealing than having the room’s attention. For Sage, her desire for that undivided attention is the only thing silencing that nagging instinct to flee. That, of course, and the rush. Sage is a willowy young woman with ivory hair. She’s neither short nor tall. Her 20-year-old voice carries a midlife temperament, and she has a lively laugh that never overstays its welcome. In class, she’s reserved and witty; on stage, deadpan and blunt. She discovered she could be funny in the 6th grade at a church open mic. Her material was innocent; animal fun facts were sufficient to get a rise out of the crowd. When she finished, she’d loosely tie it to Jesus and saunter off the stage, intoxicated by the attention she’d been lent. She hops in front of the crowd armed with a handful of jokes she wrote the night before. The rush of adrenaline silences her stomach. She looks out amidst a dark swell of anticipation, clenching the mic stand and leaning against it as if bracing for rough seas. She begins her monthly therapy at The Comedy Corner Underground, a dingy, subterranean venue on West Bank, with the one about the poor girl who kissed her at a party, ignorant of Sage’s obsessive tendencies. Hopefully she isn’t in the audience tonight.

way from Wednesday night youth group. Then again, so has Sage. She has no problem airing her dirty laundry in front of a crowd. “When you tell the audience something you wouldn’t say to your friend, it’s special,” she says. Sage accumulates junk. She has an ornamental cheetah with googly eyes named after Lana Del Rey and an absurd number of plastic dinosaurs. Her room is full of repurposed treasures. Her jokes are much the same, little gems plucked from the mundanity of daily life. Once Sage has a read on the audience, she starts to probe with her new material, but some crowds are harder to read than others. This one is particularly difficult. Many of them enjoyed the jokes but they weren’t the laughing sort. In an art form where laughter is the only metric for quality, these ostensibly harmless patrons have left Sage on thin ice. She goes with a classic, the bit about wanting to be skinnier—a safe one; it had at least six or seven solid punchlines honed over the years. The audience seems to agree.

A comedian watches comedy differently. When Sage is in the audience, she listens for the story behind the punchline. “There’s a high comorbidity with comedy and people who are not super emotionally Watching Sage’s standup is an intimate experience. healthy.” As You’ll learn about her two ex-stepdads, her anxiety, vice president her mess of a mother. Her set has come a long

of Comedy Club, she’s developed a keen ear for unhealthy humor. After a particularly emotionally fraught performance, Sage might approach the performer and ask if they’re okay. They are, they’ll tell her, and then maybe joke it off, as comedians are wont to do. But Sage knows better, she’s been down the same road. The right to be funny has to be earned. “The second-best comedian is someone who has been through a lot of hard stuff and hasn’t necessarily dealt with it,” she said. “The first best comedian has been through a lot of hard stuff but also has dealt with it. The spotlight found Sage unsure whether she’s the former or the later tonight. The last five punchlines had them rolling, and with only a minute left, she slips in one of her new jokes. Lately her material has taken a turn towards societal observation. She segues from Victoria’s Secret models to her theological musings, completes the setup, drops the punchline. Rapturous laughter—the rush is unparalleled. “That’s the best feeling in the world.”

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OCTOBER 9—18


Sad Boi and Juliet: A Review The Guthrie Theater’s take on “Romeo and Juliet” is a delicate balancing act By Nikki Pederson The Guthrie Theater’s production of “Romeo and Juliet,” William Shakespeare’s classic tale of two ill-fated lovers, plays with contradictory themes, sometimes at the sake of the audience’s comprehension. Director Joseph Haj took creative liberties to incorporate modern culture into a still-classical rendition of the show. The servants from the feuding Capulet and Montague families, while fighting with swords on a cobblestone set, are costumed in suits, studded Converse, and a plethora of fake tattoos. The transition music from one scene to the next is a finger-picked mandolin played over aggressive guitar riffs and synth beats. Romeo is dressed like he listens to Drake and reads Bukowski. And Benvolio, played by the charismatic Lamar Jefferson, often beatboxes Shakespeare’s iambic pentameter. Modern retellings of Shakespeare classics are nothing new. From “West Side Story,” a “Romeo and Juliet” set in New York City, to a movie-version of “Macbeth” set in a World War II bunker, Shakespeare’s themes are applicable across decades. However, by not committing to either a fully modern or fully classic take, each cultural shift yanks the audience out of the story, bringing unnecessary attention to the out-of-place stylistic choices.

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Outside of the design elements, the performances in the show are impressive, if unrealistic. The stand-out performance is that of the emotionally dynamic Nurse, played by Candace Barrett Birk. Romeo, played by Ryan-James Hatanaka, and Juliet, played by Kate Eastman, both capture the emotional highs and lows of their characters, although the romance itself is more reminiscent of a middle school crush than neverending love. The characters are portrayed as passionate, but with enough childish naïveté to capture the youthful and rash decisions that ultimately lead to their demise.

The acting is strong and the story compelling. However, “Romeo and Juliet” at the Guthrie cannot decide if it is a 21st century re-telling or a classic revival for the modern stage. The artistic choices made in terms of costume, technology, and design weaken the overall audience experience of an otherwise impressive show. That being said, bring a pack of tissues. Romeo and Juliet continues through Oct. 28 at the Guthrie Theater on the Wurtele Thrust Stage. Tickets start at $29. www. guthrietheater.org.

THE WAKE

CITIES

Minneapolis theatre scene is elevated by a new performance An inside look at Wedding Band, with insights from the director By Ariana Wilson This October, Penumbra Theatre’s newest production tells the story of interracial love in a small South Carolina town. Director Lou Bellamy is bringing Alice Childress’ 1973 theatrical love story to the stage at Penumbra Theatre. “Wedding Band” tells the story of a black seamstress and a white baker as they try to navigate their relationship during the Jim Crow era in Charleston, South Carolina. Despite their love being unlawful, they choose to risk their lives for it. “The play is set in 1918, yet the issues resonate in today’s society,” Bellamy says. Although the story is nearly one-hundred years old it is important for us to revisit what it was like to live in a society that was racially divided by law. “Identity and its definition is at the base of all of it. Being identified as part of a race or culture often carries with it a host of stereotypes and assumptions,” Bellamy says. Those assumptions and stereotypes stem from centuries old sentiments that still linger throughout our society. While it may appear that we live in a time where you can openly embrace your African American heritage, the experiences and discrimination of those that came before us influence the ways in which we feel comfortable expressing aspects of our racial identities. “Our history resonates and, in many ways, defines the shape and understanding of the future,” he says. Reflecting on how far we’ve come in our fight for racial equality, allows us to assess the amount of work that is yet to be done. Finding parallels between today and stories like Childress’ make us stop and think about the hidden truths embedded within our current society. To experience this story of love and identity, see “Wedding Band” at Penumbra Theatre Oct. 17-Nov. 12. Tickets start at $15, and include a post-play discussion for select dates.

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CREATIVE WRITING

My Banshee BY LIZA GORMAN-BAER “My banshee is all the parts of me that I was never allowed to show. My tantrum, my fury, my petty, my wailing. Her careful fingers pull apart the cracks in me, where my weathered clay skin began to crumble under pressure. She’s my id, my idol, my suicidal my ancestors’ trauma branching out across the family tree like veins, neurons, the passages in my lungs inscribed in my DNA, mapped in my body. My banshee cries out in the night while I sleep, dreaming the memories that not even genocide could erase but mental illness might. She’s the wailing warning I can always hear underneath every other sound, a constant undercurrent I’ve gotten good at tuning out. My banshee has wrinkled fingers from her constant washing, scrubbing clean generations of my family’s dirty laundry. But the stains are never gone, they just appear on someone else’s back. He’s alcoholic. He’s abusive. She’s just too much sometimes. My banshee’s back is bowed under the weight of everything she was ever tasked with being. Goddess, wife, mourner, harbinger, mother, fairy witch, confidante, vessel, ferryman, washerwoman, human, abstraction. She’s the place where theory meets mythology where generational trauma becomes the family curse. She haunts the roads we walk daily and the country in our blood that we yearn to return to. My banshee hates this poem. She wails and cries and tells me, “I only ever wanted to be human!” I reach out to her, feel the bitter wind run through my hair as she reaches back, and I say, “Me too and just like you this is the only way I know how to be.”

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OCTOBER 9—18


FEATURE

BY JACOB STEINBERG Music festivals are special places. They exist as worlds within themselves, albeit with looser laws and outlandish food prices. What transition into adulthood would be complete without the ritualistic pilgrimage to a previously vacant field filled with like-minded youth? Fewer places offer a more communal experience. Music festivals are cultural meccas where talent and creativity collide in a drug-laced haze to define a place and moment in history. Monterey Pop, Woodstock, Glastonbury, Coachella—music festivals mark their cultural legacy like layers in the earth. We at The Wake love music, and this summer we found ourselves on that old beaten path following the sweet sounds of music to the heartbeat of our cultural moment. Here are our stories.

THE WAKE

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FEATURE

MUSICAL LIMB S

BY HOLLY WILSON

I think everyone can agree that one of the best places to listen to music is on public transit. Public transit acts as a strange limbo of our world—you’re in public, but everyone keeps to themselves, so you retain some privacy; you’re going somewhere, but you’re stuck in one place for a while, so the outside world can’t bother you. All these little contradictions that exist in public transit make it a perfect place to listen to music. Public transit gets us from place to place in our world, all the while feeling like, for the moment, we’re existing outside of it. The mundane becomes significant and filled with metaphors with the right song and a window seat on the bus or train. I listened to “Sister” by Angel Olsen on a bus and immediately questioned the entire meaning of my existence back in January. If the combination of Olsen’s contemplative voice repeating “all my life I thought I’d change” during the bridge of the song and the snow whirling outside and buildings flying by isn’t enough to bring on an existential crisis, I don’t know what is. Music festivals are also a limbo in our universe. They have a special power to make the mundane extraordinary. Moments seem more significant within a music festival than they would outside of it. Pitchfork Music Festival, situated in the heart of Chicago at Union Park, really emphasized this limbo-like state since the easiest way to get there was on public transit. Especially since I got to have another existential crisis to “Sister,” but this time

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while watching Angel Olsen perform it live. 40 bands and artists performed sets over the weekend, giving our moments a little bit more meaning. The music followed when you hopped back onto the train at night and ordinary life seemed just a bit further away because of it. Read “Three Days At Pitchfork” on wakemag.org to get a full rundown of the entire festival.

LIT @ L LLA

BY LIV MARTIN

My first time at Lollapalooza this past summer fulfilled many of my expectations, but also left some room for the unexpected. There were, of course, huge crowds; the closed-off streets in the heart of downtown Chicago were filled to the brim with concertgoers. Walking through the packed streets, there were frequent sightings of nearly blackout drunk frat-boy types, sipping vodka from their CamelBaks and stumbling around the grounds. There were the teen girls clad in appropriate festival attire, faces adorned in rhinestones and belly buttons out. And of course, there were the overpriced food vendors: three two-inch lobster corn dogs for $18 and halfliter plastic jugs of wine for $25 each. I attended the festival on Sunday, the final day. The personal appeal for Sunday was that The Shins would be headlining. I’ve loved their music since discovering them in middle school, and know many of their songs by heart. They played around 5 p.m., and the golden hour light was upon the crowd. I was happily tipsy, swaying to the lovely melodies. I had nabbed one of the previously-mentioned, overpriced plastic bottles of wine an hour earlier from a man passed out, napping peacefully in a

grassy area. I reasoned he probably did not need it. The Shins’ set was perfect. Even the crowd felt kind, and somehow my boyfriend and I made it to the third row without any pushing, shoving, or nasty words. This was the complete opposite of my experience with the hip-hop crowds, in which people pulled my hair and called me names without qualms. If you don’t mind dancing your heart out with thousands of people and sidestepping drunk folks on the sidewalk, then go to Lollapalooza. Your soul will feel happy when you look up at the sun setting over the Chicago skyline, music from the most talented bands of our generation pouring out over a crowd of thousands.

W RM WEEKS OF SUMMER BY OLIVIA NOVOTNY

This summer I had the perhaps strangest experience of my life: I lived as a worm for a week. Well, a metaphorical worm that is. I was a performance artist at the Eaux Claires music festival for the amazingly talented Vanessa Cronan. Known by her stage name Vnesswolfchild, she is a conceptual artist and musician who uses sound, installation and movement to create performances that encourage discovery and understanding of human existence. Her work at Eaux Claires was based around a story she wrote about supernatural earthworms that are interconnected with all things: the earth, the water, the air. Grief in the hearts of humans created a fissure in the world out of which the worms crawled, aiming to bring love back into the world for all humans.

OCTOBER 9—18


FEATURE

I, along with 14 other young artists, found myself in the middle of a field in Eau Claire, Wisconsin on a Monday morning the week prior to the festival. Vanessa sewed costumes for us—giant pink sleeping bag-type tubes that we laid in and zipped all the way up. There was one mesh hole the size of an orange for breathing and seeing. The costumes were filled with fluff, and were extremely hot in the summer sun. I constantly felt like I was suffocating.

When the festival came, we took turns as worms all day, first appearing in the woods, then in paths, and in more public places like the stage fields. In the beginning, people didn’t even know there were humans inside. All the fluff camouflaged us as puffy pink balls that were wiggling around in the dirt, somehow. People came up to us, pet us, and even when they discovered humans were inside, were never taken aback. I felt the love being passed around.

What the hell had I gotten myself into? I started to doubt the worth of the free tickets. For the next couple days we participated in “worm camp,” as we coined it. Mindfulness yoga, breathing exercises, really learning how to feel our bodies in the worm. All so we could become the worm.

On Saturday evening we performed a choreographed dance to Feist’s “I Feel It All.” I was in my underwear, body wet from sweating in my costume, feeling exposed but completely masked. There was something so freeing about performing, but having no one see your body. As I was laying there waiting for our cue, I could barely make out anything, but I knew there was a huge crowd by the sound of it. When we started dancing there were roars of joyous laughter that gave us the energy to keep pushing through the rest of the dance. It was invigorating. When it was over it started raining and we jumped out of our costumes, practically naked. It was a feeling I will truly never forget, I felt incredibly alive and lucky to be one of the Eaux Claires worms.

“WHO THE HELL IS FROM MINNES TA ANYWAY?” BY GABBY GRANADA

“Last time we were here we played at a profoundly smaller stage,” said Hippo Campus lead singer Jake Luppen, evoking an eruption of screams from the growing crowd before him at Lollapalooza’s Lake Shore stage. “Chicago, this is incredible.”

THE WAKE

Just two years ago, the Minnesota band made their Lollapalooza debut in front of a modestsized crowd at the BMI stage, one of the festival’s smaller stages that’s typically reserved for up-and-coming artists. Despite the stage’s size, it’s a hidden gem nonetheless. Tucked away underneath rows of arching trees, the stage offers a breathtaking view of the city’s lakefront and some much-needed relief in the shade. The Hippos have always had a fiercely loyal fan base, and their concerts—no matter the venue— teem with hot energy and high spirits from their predominantly high school and college-aged fans. Lollapalooza this August was no exception. In fact, it was the largest crowd I’ve ever seen them play for with over 200 festival-goers weaving and bobbing their heads to get a better look at the four boys. The crowd coursed with a familiar infectious energy that warranted frequent jumping and, yes, even the occasional mosh pit. Something about their catchy, repetitive lyrics; bubbly, lemon-drop sound; and their energetic stage presence makes their music irresistibly dance-worthy. A girl within earshot scoffed at a nearby sign that read “I heart Minnesota’’ in giant red bubble letters: “I mean really, who the hell is from Minnesota, anyway?” Her friends laughed. As if on cue, the band played the first few chords of their song “Western Kids,” dedicating it to their Midwestern roots. “This one goes out to any folks out there from Minnesota,” Luppen said, sending the crowd roaring once again. “This one’s for you.” Photos by Mariah Crabb and Kellen Renstrom. Feature Cover: KR (Mitski) Left (top—bottom, left—right): KR (Angel Olsen), KR (Dawn Richard), MC, KR (Francis + The Lights), MC (New Heart), KR (D.R.A.M). Right (top—bottom, left—right): MC, KR (Kamaiyah), KR (Travis Scott), KR (Solange), MC

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ART

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OCTOBER 9—18


ART

Edge of Life BY LISA PERSSON/ nextdimensional Edge of Life is a song off 26 BATS! debut album Cave Cuts. When Bailey Cogan of 26 BATS! approached me about making a visual, she said she wrote the song in the mind of an alien being, and that my artistry made her think of extraterrestrial beings. This mindset inspired the body paint and the underwater scenes. We wanted the video to be otherworldly.

THE WAKE

Art by nextdimensional

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Q&A

Astral Samara BY LIV MARTIN Alex Adkinson, who performs under the moniker Astral Samara, has a lot to say about the interconnections between music, feelings, and philosophy. Adkinson, a UMN graduate who studied kinesiology, is creating his own type of experimental music. Read on to learn how he conceives of his psychedelic, sad boy pop: his inspirations, feelings, and creative process.

: When did you start making music? Alex Adkinson: I have young childhood memories of playing the guitar and singing songs about my dogs. I think it’s a natural compulsion of my body. In college, I just had a band with my friends and we started recording demos and having shows. It wasn’t really until college that I started taking it seriously.

: What is the meaning behind the name Astral Samara and why did you chose it?

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AA: I kinda got it from a mushroom trip I had. It’s kind of some weirdo hippy sh*t where I kinda think about it as myself moving through space… being organic material. A samara is the part of a plant that allows it to be transported, like the fluffy part of a dandelion. The name is about traveling through space.

OCTOBER 9—18


Q&A

: In a description you wrote on your SoundCloud for your song “innerenvironment,” which features female vocals and cello, you mention that much of it is improvised. How do you recreate your music for a live audience?

: How would you define your style of music? AA: I mostly do research to find things I’m interested in and then I find a lyrical space to produce it. I improvise a lot to find the form of the songs and then let what happens naturally happen. I try to keep it in some sort of pop space with also keeping it psychedelic and experimental.

: You came out with a full album (14 tracks!), “zonal flows” in March. What was your creative process while creating this album? AA: It has a theory accompanied with it, of philosophy that I wrote. I was reading Gravity’s Rainbow at the time. It’s a really out-there kind of psychedelic post-modernist book. I was reading a lot of post-structuralism at the time so I got the idea to try and integrate those ideas into my music. I was also writing my own theories at the time so it all got wrapped up together. : You also released some new music this summer including songs “see through” and “arp jam.” How do you think your music is evolving? AA: With “see through” I think that was me striving for pop...and I think I’m getting closer to it. I have a few tracks I’m about to release that are even more poppy. I just got a Juno-66 synthesizer, and it has the best sound. I’m obsessed with it. “see through” was my attempt at a dance pop song, but it’s still sad. I’m currently going through a breakup and I wrote “see through” when I could feel it was about to happen.

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AA: I do some improvisational stuff and some that isn’t… I kinda like to think that whichever I am trying to do, I’m in a different mental space. I do like improvising and I like the energy that it has and how it feels. Ultimately, I’m working into a really cohesive live set. I want to have visuals for my new pop material, too!

: Who are your biggest influences?

the people you can hang out with are also people who you respect deeply. Minneapolis is smaller for a city. It’s a definitely great place to build your music and to find yourself. The only thing that bums me out is that Minneapolis is kind of insular. It means we care about each other a lot but sometimes we care too much and I am sometimes jealous of my friends on the East Coast who don’t get as obsessed over scene politics.

: Do you know what direction you’re going in yet for your next project? AA: Yeah. I do! I’m working on another full-length album. It’s gonna be called something along the lines of “Let me walk you out, I’ll show you to the door.” It’s going to be a journey through a postmodern labyrinth, which is, to me, a metaphor for how I view society. You walk through the world and wonder, “What path do I take?” But really you’re always just going to be doing what you’re doing. The world is scary right now and politics are crazy. I want to explain why I feel detached from the world and bare my soul. But I still want it to be poppy and fun. I have two songs done and they’re both pretty short. Like, the lyrics are scary but the music is fun!

AA: I’m influenced a lot by philosophy, like Deleuze. And, let’s see… musically, Pauline Oliveros, who was an avant-garde composer in the 60s until somewhat recently. I met her through a workshop with her at the U. Honestly, I’ve been interested in meditation and transcendental thought for a long : Any upcoming Astral Samara songs to get time. Bringing yourself back down to the world excited about? and reality is powerful. Meditating on something… when you have the theory and the clear head AA: Keep an eye out for my next single, called that comes with it, and then coming back to music “Apparatus of Control.” I swear, it’s like a nice synthmaking is amazing. pop song.

: What do you like or dislike the most about being a part of the local Minneapolis music scene? AA: It’s a really great community of people. There are people like Larry Wish who is blending music and performance art. It’s fun and it’s funny... tongue in cheek! And then there’ s great largescale stuff to look up to. It’s a great thing when

Images courtesy of Astral Samara See Through art by Andrew Swenson

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VOICES

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Unite and Conquer

University of Minnesota Exhibit Displays the Historic Significance of Student Activism BY LAURA BEIER Winding through the second and third floors of Anderson Library, I read poster after poster covered with documents, letters, and complaints detailing the racism and anti-Semitism displayed in the actions of multiple administrators at our university. Each was more appalling than the next— African American students being banned from student housing, Jewish students being tracked and spied on, and left-leaning students being called communists. How did we not know for years that this happened at our university?

“A Campus Divided: Progressives, Anti-Communists, and Anti-Semitism at the University of Minnesota, 1930-1942,” an exhibit on West Bank campus, shines a harsh light on the administrative oppression that clouded the University of Minnesota in the 1930s and 1940s. Our student union is quite literally named after former President Lotus Coffman, who fought for segregation of student housing tooth and nail and excluded African American students from participating in student groups. Nicholson Hall, where the Center for Jewish Studies is housed, is named after the first dean of student affairs, Edward Nicholson, who spied on anti-war student activists (especially those who were Jewish), prohibited liberal student groups, and meticulously

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kept track of Jewish students enrolled at the U. Hans Luther, an actual Nazi ambassador, visited the U in response to an Olympic boycott in 1935, and university administration was more concerned that year about Langston Hughes’ visit to the university due to his left-wing politicalaffiliations. Yet through all of these atrocities, student activists stayed strong and fought right back. Student groups held rallies and created petitions, using fact-finding reports and the Minnesota Daily for leverage. Alliances were made across the African American, Jewish, and Farmer-Labor Party communities on campus, and by holding protest after protest, students finally got former President Coffey to eradicate segregated student housing in 1942. While these hidden aspects of our university’s shameful history are disconcerting and horrifying, it was necessary to reveal them not only to acknowledge our ancestors’ wrongdoings, but also so we can see how important and effective activism is. Through not having anywhere to live on campus, being outright discriminated against at a university that accepted their application but not their skin color or religion, and having

their privacy infringed upon, excluded students at the University of Minnesota came together to challenge the oppression they faced. If they hadn’t, who knows how much longer the U would have been on the wrong side of history. This perseverance and dedication to fighting for what one believes in has been and continues to be the most essential part in creating change. Progress towards equality doesn’t just happen with wishful thinking and the bypasser attitude that everything will turn out okay—it happens when those who care about the state of humanity come together to ensure justice for themselves and those around them. “A Campus Divided: Progressives, Anti-Communists, and Anti-Semitism at the University of Minnesota, 1930-1942” is a collection of information that should have been shared a long time ago, and still rings true today. While countless episodes of activism have resulted in immense progress since the ‘30s and ‘40s, systemic inequality is still very much among us.

OCTOBER 9—18


The Politics of Nature

VOICES

Should politicians and the media politicize natural disasters?

BY EMMA DILL The Politics of NatureShould politicians and the media politicize natural disasters?By Emma DillScenes of hurricane-fueled destruction have become all too familiar—heaping piles of debris, downed palm trees and power lines, roofs torn from houses. Cable news has broadcasted an endless reel of such scenes from the southern U.S. and Caribbean. But why the emphasis on the storms? Foremost, destruction draws viewers. Just like the “rubbernecks” who can’t help but gawk at highway accidents, Americans are glued to their TVs during disasters, eager for breaking updates. The hurricanes also affected millions of people. Therefore, although far from Minnesota, even Midwestern viewers probably have some connection to the devastated South—relatives, friends, former classmates. We have personal connections, and want to know what could have happened to them. However, the storms also give news anchors and politicians alike something to discuss. Politicians have used Hurricanes Harvey and Irma to unite voters and calculate their votes for the 2018 elections. Today, everything seems to be a political statement, from the first lady’s fashion choices to the president’s golf outings. Hurricanes are no exception. As the storms made landfall,

commentators on cable news were already analyzing the effects the storms would have on politics. How would they impact Trump’s base? Would Trump’s reaction define his presidency? And just how would Trump react? The questions and their speculative answers swirled together, filling the breaks between incoming reports of destruction. We cannot just blame the media; politicians took the first step to politicize the storms. Politicians probably ask themselves if it is ethical to use the misery of others for potential personal gain. And some must have decided yes, using this instance of destruction is fine. If it helps them get elected then it will contribute to a larger political movement that could help other Americans. I understand their perspective, but I disagree. The destruction of a hurricane can help us become better. It teaches us how to build more hurricaneresistant buildings, to develop more efficient evacuation strategies, and refine our response efforts. But politicians should not politicize the storm mere days after it happens. Let the people recover— return to their homes, resume daily life in hopes of creating some version of normalcy. These families do not need to be made an example of by drawing them into the politics that manage to creep into every cultural crevice.

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Politicization can occur, but it needs to be done

2 with taste and with time. We need to focus on the

present recovery efforts, not projections of the margin of 2018’s elections.

The exception to this rule is climate change. Harvey and Irma are prime examples of how climate change amplifies natural disasters. The warming water adds fuel to already strong storms, making them larger and even more potent. Irma, for instance, was the largest hurricane ever formed in the Atlantic. The landfall of these storms coincided with wildfires that still continue to rage in the Northwest, and are fueled in part by climate change. This coincidental occurrence lends the perfect opportunity for a conversation about the climate. Yet, because climate change is such a polarizing issue, some politicians want to delay discussion. One example is Scott Pruitt, the head of the Environmental Protection Agency, who said in a

“Politicians have used Hurricanes Harvey and Irma to unite voters and calculate their votes for the 2018 elections.” phone interview with CNN that “to have any kind of focus on the cause and effect of the storm; versus helping people, or actually facing the effect of the storm, is misplaced.” Pruitt’s statement agrees with my own beliefs about making the storms political, but climate change is different. For years, politicians and American citizens alike have kicked climate change down the road. Storms like Hurricanes Sandy and Katrina hinted at the effects of climate change, but these suggestions were largely ignored. But it continues to affect our weather, causing monstrous storms like Harvey and Irma. We cannot keep ignoring our changing climate. Instead, we need to use the storms as a conversation starter that will prompt Americans and their DC representatives to take action on climate change to prevent similar storms in the future. Politicians can talk about these hurricanes to enact climate legislation, but that should be it. Politicizing the storms merely to gain votes or for good publicity heartlessly shifts the focus from the families that need it the most.

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VOICES

Lives of the Drivers These campus heroes might be closer than you think BY KAYLA MARTIN It’s Monday morning, and you have an 8 a.m. on West Bank. We all know the feeling of begrudgingly rolling out of bed and beginning a full day of class. But there is something we often forget to acknowledge when we step on the Campus Connector at an unreasonably early hour: our bus drivers. Here at the U, we are fortunate to have an efficient bus system that takes us from campus to campus. I decided to interview a few of the heroes behind the wheel, and they were more than willing to answer questions about their profession and lives beyond driving. Frank Holbert, who lives in Minneapolis, said that students in Minnesota are overall courteous and respectful toward drivers. He added that students should be more vigilant and aware of their surroundings. In other words, put down your phone. One driver, nicknamed “Catfish,” warmly waved at a fellow bus driver upon passing. He also emphasized the polite manners students have. His favorite movie is “Devil in a Blue Dress,”starring Denzel Washington. David Ortiz, a second-year driver, said his favorite part of driving on campus is meeting new people. Ortiz drives the Campus Connector during the semester, but on breaks he is a world traveler. With 26 countries under his belt, he will be traveling to the Baltic States this November. Ortiz’s advice for students is to not rush, but have patience when it comes to both school and life.

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Next time you hop on the connector for that pesky 8 a.m., make sure to greet your driver. These people work hard to make our lives just a bit easier. To all of the campus bus drivers, thank you for what you do. You brighten our days one pilgrimage to St. Paul at a time.

Trump, Kaler, and the end of DACA

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A reflection on President Kaler’s response to Trump’s abrupt termination of DACA BY SIMON BATISTICH In early September, on the first day of the fall semester, all students, staff, and faculty received an email confronting an upsetting announcement made that morning by Donald Trump. Our president had declared an abrupt end to the young federal initiative Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA). In ending DACA, Trump seeks to shed protections for approximately 800,000 undocumented minors, or Dreamers. Many Dreamers attend the U, and therefore are faced with an immediate and existential threat to their educations and lives in the United States. The email we all received on September 5 was a response penned by President Kaler designed to quell worries harbored by those students protected by DACA and campus members uncertain of the fates of many of their neighbors, classmates, and friends. Kaler’s response was smart yet pointed, ensuring that the university will sanction “everything possible under law” to care for those students affected by Trump’s decision. Most importantly, though, Kaler urged affected students to contact the Immigration Response Team, an on-campus resource for undocumented students which organized in April. Although it provides necessary support for immigrants at the U, the team was only formed due to a loud and persistent call since the 2016 Presidential Election for the university to become a “sanctuary campus.” This designation would grant undocumented students of the campus community an assurance of the same freedoms to privacy, employment, and education enjoyed by American citizens. Sanctuary campuses have been officially adopted by 9 postsecondary institutions across the nation and demanded by campus communities at dozens more. Thus, the most powerful rebuke Kaler and the university can express against Trump’s threatening anti-immigration diatribe would be to designate our own campus as an academy, community, and home for all people, as a sanctuary for Dreamers.

OCTOBER 9—18


VOICES

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“It” and the Politics of Horror On the cultural and political implications of Pennywise the clown BY CLAIRE BECKER Yellowed, lamp-like eyes. Dusty white skin thickly plastered with caking makeup. Red lips, slimy with a ravenous drool. A sharp-toothed, coldly unnerving grin. “Hi-ya, Georgie! You want your boat back?” Steve Bannon drawls hoarsely from the sewer drain. Ah, I kid. Are we still making Steve Bannon jokes? I might be a little late to the party on that one—just couldn’t resist. Anyway, moving past it: of course, you know who I’m really talking about. Film’s spookiest harlequin: Pennywise the Dancing Clown. Roughly 27 years after the original release of “It” in 1990, Stephen King’s famous horror story resurfaces as a fall blockbuster starring, notably, That One Kid from “Stranger Things.” Reviews of the film have been relatively mixed, though review isn’t really my purpose in this piece. Instead, I’d like to explore some of the deeper implications of the film in its social and political contexts—that is to say, I want to know what Pennywise the Dancing Clown is doing in Trump’s America, and what our intense fear of him could possibly mean. Some brief theoretical background: there exists a generally accepted theory that horror films reflect the social anxieties of their times. For example, “Them!”a 1954 horror film about radioactively mutated ants attacking Los Angeles, is largely thought to be a manifestation of American fears of nuclear violence during the Cold War. It has been argued, in a similar vein, that “Godzilla” was the Japanese reaction to Hiroshima and Nagasaki. What’s more, many vampire movies—especially Bram Stoker’s “Dracula” (1992), and possibly “Twilight” if one really forced an argument—are

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thought to be reactions to the AIDS epidemic of the late 1980s. Most recently, Jordan Peele’s directorial debut, “Get Out,” is a very clear and deliberate expression of the racial tension that pervades modern America. In sum, art imitates life and vice versa—nothing new there. The question remains: what is Pennywise doing in Trump’s America? What does a creepy clown that returns every 27 years to snack on children mean for our societal fears today? To begin answering that question, it could be helpful to think about why Pennywise scares us so much. He’s a shapeshifter, morphing his being into whatever scares his victims the most. On top of that, he seems to be everywhere. He doesn’t just haunt a house—he can appear anywhere in Derry to torment his prey. Pennywise evokes an idea of inescapable and adaptable terror; he isn’t just scary, he’s fear itself. So maybe it isn’t really Pennywise that’s terrifying, but rather the world of “It”: Derry, Maine. The terror of the story is woven deeply into the setting of “It”—the house on Neibolt street, the Barrens, the sewers, the school where bullies torment our group of plucky protagonists—it’s all chock-full of dread. And isn’t America kind of like that? I mean, I don’t regularly run into deformed clowns trying to kill me on my way home, but I do fear global warming, political instability, economic crisis, the possibility of war, the possibility that my health care might not be covered in the near future. And I’m a middle-class white woman. The “losers”of Derry, our protagonists, are conspicuously underprivileged. Beverly comes from an

impoverished home and deals with an abusive father, Stanley faces anti-Semitism as a Jewish boy, Mike is tormented by racists who refer to him as an “outsider.” These kids, plagued with bullies and evils of a grandiose nature, are very similar to those downtrodden in modern America. And just like the kids in the movie know something’s wrong with Derry, these people know something’s wrong with America.

“Pennywise evokes an idea of inescapable and adaptable terror; he isn’t just scary, he’s fear itself.” Of course, Pennywise and the kids of“It” don’t form a perfect allegory of modern American society. But that’s not the point. It was never about Pennywise himself, but rather about our fears and what they attach themselves to. What we’re really afraid of is what Pennywise represents: that pervasive, inescapable fear. Pennywise isn’t a perfect reflection of American social anxieties, but an analysis of why he scares us can at the very least be helpful in diagnosing the American problem of which fear is a symptom. Sharp-toothed, whitefaced, red-mouthed, shape-shifting, ubiquitous, frustratingly and terrifyingly inescapable: fear. Or Steve Bannon, you decide.

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SIX REVIEWS

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BROCKHAMPTON “Saturation” BY LYDIA CRABTREE You may have heard of the name BROCKHAMPTON by now because the group has recently taken the rap game to a whole new level. BROCKHAMPTON is a boy band consisting of four rappers, three producers, and three designers. The members met on an online Kanye West forum in 2014. “SATURATION” is the first album in a trilogy released by the band. The second installment, “SATURATION II”, came out on August 25th, and “SATURATION III” is presumably coming out before the end of 2017. The first song on “SATURATION” is “HEAT,” which has hard hitting lyrics about police brutality. With lyrics such as “I’ll break your neck so you can watch your back” and “that concrete feels the hardest every time I seem to touch it,” the group shows that they are not afraid to tackle politicallycharged issues in their songs. BROCKHAMPTON’s progressive thinking and increasing following on social media has provided them with a solid platform to rap about whatever they are passionate about. “STAR” is the wittiest rap song on the album, with over twenty references to celebrities and movies. The group shows off their emotional side with the song “FACE,” in which the lyrics are about longing for someone. The album also includes three skits, which was a trend in ‘90s rap that the boy band is trying to resurrect. The album is an 11/10, and fans will without a doubt be waiting impatiently for the surprise drop of SATURATION III.

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Live at the Myth: Mac Demarco + The Flaming Lips BY CLAIRE REDELL For those looking for relief from the usual Sunday night blues, live music enthusiasts were in luck thanks to Mac DeMarco and The Flaming Lips just a few weeks ago. On Sept. 18, the co-headliners made a tour stop at The Myth that drew millennials and baby boomers together for a show unlike any other. While millennials clad in flannel and cuffed denim illed the crowd, fans of Canada’s slackerrock pro Mac Demarco eagerly awaited his opening tune “On the Level” from his most recent album “This Old Dog.” Though it had been an agonizing four years since his last Twin Cities stop, DeMarco kept his set laid-back and true to his cool, multi-instrumentalist roots throughout the dreamy 14-song set. DeMarco pulled primarily from his well-received album “2,” slipped in an ode to Prince’s “Do Me Baby,” and included edgy interludes, keeping the crowd enthralled from beginning to end. Within moments after the closing note of DeMarco’s final song, most of his fans instantly traded spots with the veteran listeners of The Flaming Lips to ensure a prime view of their circuslike stage props. Concertgoers new to the Oklahoma City ensemble were in for a surprise. The Flaming Lips intensified their set with jaw-dropping amounts of confetti blasting from cannons, ear-splitting percussion, and psychedelic visuals to complement their oldest ‘90s classics and newest singles. The uber-relaxed DeMarco and exuberant The Flaming Lips did a fantastic job of appealing to the masses in an undoubtedly unique and unforgettable experience for all.

The War on Drugs “A Deeper Understanding” BY KARL WITKOWIAK The War on Drugs are known for their ability to incorporate nostalgic elements while also keeping a fresh sound. With their fourth studio album, “A Deeper Understanding,” they bring their eclectic and experimental music to a new level. The instrumentation is the high point of this album. There is a certain lucidity to the instrumentation that gives “A Deeper Understanding” its appeal. Most tracks are synth-led, with fuzzed out, psychedelic guitar solos closing the tracks, creating incredible endings to songs like “Pain” and “Strangest Thing.” The War on Drugs continue to draw heavy influences from Bruce Springsteen, given the rollicking guitar hooks and drum beats suited for long drives on the highway. Lead vocalist Adam Granduciel’s wispy but poignant vocals are analogous to Bob Dylan (especially on “In Chains,” which features a harmonica solo). At its core, “A Deeper Understanding” is about emotional distance and observance. Granduciel is an emotional and physical wreck on this album, as exemplified on “Pain,” where he is unsure what is causing him such deep, sorrowful pain. Granduciel’s lyrics are also contemplative, such as on “Thinking of a Place,” where he compares the experience of finding new love to “walking against the darkness of a beach,” a scene that is serene, yet uncertain. The War on Drugs have come back with yet another impressive record to add to their collection. The quality of the production measures up well to the hidden melancholy of the lyrics. These elements combine to create “A Deeper Understanding,” your go-to album for late-night drives.

OCTOBER 9—18


SIX REVIEWS

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Metropolis (1927)

Thundercat at First Ave

Hippo Campus

BY HANNAH KLOOS

“Warm Glow”

You wouldn’t have known it was a Sunday night by the way First Ave was grooving to Thundercat, the alter-ego of bassist, singer, and overall extraordinaire Stephen Bruner. Bruner, who is also an extremely prolific producer, can be credited for helping develop projects from Kendrick Lamar’s “To Pimp A Butterfly,” to songs by crossover band Suicidal Tendencies. During his live performance, the LA multi-instrumentalist spun the crowd through the songs of his most recent album, “Drunk,” a 23-track achievement of modern jazz. Thundercat blazed through songs at a relentless speed, taking very few breaks to even address the crowd. Stage lights flashed and blinding strobe lights pounded, enveloping the crowd in blue and red. As the lights changed, the music did too, keeping the crowd on its toes as he dove into the myriad of themes that “Drunk” explores. It was interesting to experience the concert through the lens of the lyrics on his album. Many of them are deeply personal and delve into topics like loneliness and isolation caused by his lifestyle as a touring musician, alcoholism and drug use, and unrequited love. Thundercat mainly showcased his newer material, but the crowd patiently awaited old favorites, including “Lone Wolf and Cub” and “Them Changes,” which he finally unveiled for the encore. As trippy as he is technical, Thundercat proved his chops as an outstanding live performer.

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BY MEGAN HOFF St. Paul’s own Hippo Campus released three new songs on September 12th. The new EP, dubbed “warm glow,” provides a sweet taste of one of Minnesota’s rising indie pop quartets. These songs have arrived only a few short months after their full-length album, “Landmark,” was released in February. The first track, “baseball,” is a fan favorite that made appearances on tour, but had yet to see a studio recording. It begins with a 1975-esque guitar riff, bubbling and bursting with a melody that makes it hard to stand still. “traveler,” the second track, is similarly buoyant, but hiding underneath the upbeat façade and lead singer Jake Luppen’s occasionally unintelligible vocals are lyrics of longing. Ultimately, the trio of songs are rounded out by the title track. A slower, drawn-out stroll of a song that taps out at almost six minutes, “warm glow” is the perfect song to savor the fleeting moments of summer weather. “traveler” and “warm glow” were both played at the band’s two shows at the Minnesota State Fair over Labor Day weekend, though there was no mention of the upcoming EP at the time. Teasers for new music were posted on their social media accounts a week after the fair, and fans have eagerly devoured the new material. During your daily walk to class, listen to some music that has roots in the Twin Cities.

“The mediator between head and hands must be the heart” BY JACK HEDLUND-FAY In a vision of the future far ahead of its time, Fritz Lang’s 1927 science fiction epic, Metropolis, presents a dystopian future ruled by a wealthy elite who have turned a blind eye to the toiling masses in favor of gardens of vain pleasures and a fetishistic reverence for high technology. The story follows the parallel adventures of the master of Metropolis, Joh, and his naïve son Freder. From his headquarters, Joh hears of a possible workers’ rebellion. He consults the scientist Rotwang, who, because he hates Joh, completes and activates his “maschinenmensch,” a gynoid modelled after one of the more level-headed workers, Maria. He sends it forth to sow discord and ultimately destroy the infrastructure that supports all of Metropolis. Meanwhile, Freder follows the real Maria disguised as a worker in the Heart of Metropolis to learn of their struggles. He seeks to become a mediator between the elite “head” and the industrial “hands.” In its time, Metropolis was met with mixed reviews, and failed financially, but its revolutionary techniques, style, and tone have continued to influence dystopias in film and television, garnering acclaim as one of the great works of science fiction. A restoration of the film was released in 2010, including scenes found on recently-discovered 16mm negatives of the original. To any fan of science fiction, Metropolis is a must-see film, both as a dramatic tale of social inequality and as one of the most influential pieces of film in the history of dystopian fiction.

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The Wake, Issue 1, Fall 2017