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Culture Shock

Sierra Witham


POEM: mus-z 401

The professor, trying to endear himself to the class, told us about hearing his first kid was a boy. Like you could know, I had just thought, when he said it didn’t seem right–– “Babies,” to him, “are girls.”   I winced, wondering how often he infantilizes women, and if he’s ...


Interview with Sol Ramos, Mountain Goats Fan Zine Creator

Sol Ramos is putting together, in his words, “a Mountain Goats fan zine by trans people about trans identity and the Mountain Goats.” The zine, White Cedar, will be available this winter. Ramos studied interdisciplinary visual arts––a degree that let him pursue LGBT art, multiculturalism, and ...


Speedy Ortiz's Abstruse "Casper (1995)"

Maybe the spookiest thing about Speedy Ortiz’s “Casper (1995),” off the indie rock band’s debut album Major Arcana, is its lyric’s inscrutability. Many questions are left unanswered, including this bizarre one: what’s the speaker planning on doing with the plasma he has "coming through"? ...


A Conversation with Local Music Critic Stephen Deusner

Stephen Deusner is a music critic who lives here in Bloomington. He’s written for Pitchfork, Salon, and Stereogum–to name just a few. We met at Hopscotch Coffee on a Saturday afternoon and ended up talking for nearly two hours. Not all of our conversation is below, as the unabridged transcription ...


5 Artists to See at Pitchfork Music Festival

Pitchfork Fest is almost here. You only have just over a week to wait until you get to stand in the heat, under-hydrated, with strangers invading your personal space, some of those strangers evidently not too keen on showering, some of them too drunk to realize they’re testing your olfactory system. ...


Josh Tillman–Mostly Hypothetical Mountains

Mostly Hypothetical Mountains, the novella that comes with physical copies of Father John Misty’s debut album Fear Fun, is in a way another ironic joke of Josh Tillman’s. If you’re not all that familiar with Tillman, he’s given himself a moniker that, in his own words, is "like ‘Alexa Chung’ ...


Carrie Brownstein–Hunger Makes Me a Modern Girl

Portlandia, the Emmy-nominated sketch comedy show that elevated Carrie Brownstein to a household name, is mentioned once in her memoir Hunger Makes Me a Modern Girl–in the epilogue. The title of the book refers to the fifth track on The Woods, the seventh album from Brownstein’s band Sleater-Kinney ...

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