7 Things, Features

Jamila Woods, Wagakki Band and Kylie Jenner’s Singing Career: 7 Things We’re Into This Week

Named after the glorious, if negligibly inaccurate Miley Cyrus song, The Sympathizer HQ delivers to your computer and phone screens (or iPad–if you’re that guy) a spanking new column. A weekly round-up, “7 Things” presents you with 7 things we’ve been into this week–songs, records, books, podcasts, both old and new. You’ll never be left not knowing what to do with your weekend again.

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Thing 1: Wagakki Band’s “Kishikaisei”

My thing this week is this video. It’s by this Japanese band called “Wagakki Band” which literally means Traditional Japanese Musical Instrument Band. And they blend traditional Japanese instruments like shamisen and koto with traditional “rock” instruments to make this super uniquely Japanese kind of music. I’m usually not a fan of super anime song-ish power vocals like this, but today  this week I’m just really feeling it. You can find the full version on Spotify here if you’re interested. – Reina Shinohara

Thing 2: Steve Miller’s Detroit Rock City

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I’ve been reading this book, Detroit Rock City. It’s about the city, not the song. Though Kiss make a (thankfully brief) appearance. It’s written by Steve Miller. Not THE Steve Miller, A Steve Miller. The author and the artists play fast and loose with the city boundaries of Detroit. I learned that CREEM magazine was based out of Pontiac, for a time. I learned that Alice Cooper, the band, not the man, moved to Waterford, rented a farmhouse way out in the middle of nowhere farm country. You know who else did that? My moms, in the 80s. I grew up in the very shit splat town Alice Cooper escaped to, two decades prior. That cosmic harmony, man. That serendipity. It’s good to know there’re other rock and rollers who know the true definition of hell on earth. – Brook Pridemore

Thing 3: Netflix’s The Crown

I’m a complete sucker for Netflix originals, and I don’t think I’m alone in this. We’ve had a high volume, top quality content being churned out now, and producers are putting a lot more faith in Netflix for shows that don’t necessarily fit the norm of standardized prime time television. House of Cards may have put Netflix on the map, with Kevin Spacey lending an air of credibility to Netflix, and the online streaming service has not disappointed since then. We got a wonderful insight into diversity and crime with Orange Is The New Black, a revitalization of the superhero genre with Daredevil, a blow to the superhero stereotype with Jessica Jones and Luke Cage, a nostalgic throwback to 80s fringe science with Stranger Things, a hopeful commentary on minorities with Sense8, and an undiluted, authentic account of Pablo Escobar’s cocaine empire in Narcos. These are just to name a few, mind you. Netflix churns out documentaries, stand up comedies, 30 min sitcoms, movies and much more. The Crown is the latest addition to the repertoire, rivaling ITV’s Victoria with a portrayal of the epitome of Britain: The Royal Family. We see Doctor Who‘s Matt Smith play the unrestrained Prince Phillip, and Wolf Hall‘s Claire Foy play Queen Elizabeth; back in the days of her coronation and post WW2 London. I’ve been so captivated by The Crown, not just because of its tender, yet unbiased depiction of the Royals, but also with the smooth cinematography. Things take a slight unsaturated and cool tone, and every movement seems graceful and deliberate, as if it’s been shot on image stabilizing cameras. Colors are still rich and vibrant, but nothing seems overtly grandiose or gaudy, as shows about royals ends up being. The opening theme is just gorgeous, both visually and musically (Hans Zimmer does it again). Claire Foy’s acting as the restrained monarch is just out of this world, and while I haven’t finished the show yet, it’s perfect after a long day at work with the lights turned down just to see how beautiful the video is. The Crown represents a subtle change in TV shows about Royals, graceful yet mesmerizing, much like Queen Elizabeth herself after a long period of colorful royals. P.S.: Is that actually John Lithgow playing Winston Churchill?? You could never tell beneath the cigar and the crisp, PM-worthy London accent. He looks just like the face on the new £5 note. – Keerthana Batchu

Thing 4: Jamila Woods’ “Lately”

“Lately” by Jamila Woods is one of the best songs I have heard in a long time. Off her tape HEAVN, Jamila brings you a dose of emotional, sweet sounds with simple lyrics. I hope it mends your heart this week. – Siya Bahal

Thing 5: Kylie Jenner’s Singing Career

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This week is as every week should be: all about Kylie Jenner’s singing career. A ~very new~ group named Terror Jr is responsible for a song called “3 Strikes,” that was recently used in a cute and violent Kylie Cosmetics lip gloss ad. Nothing is known of Terror Jr’s lead singer Lisa Terror, and several have speculated the songstress is actually King Kylie herself. And so I am keeping the dream alive as well, although I’m 99% sure the voice actually belongs to Kiiara. Anyway check the shit out cause it’s a dope song and forget this week exists!! – Krista Caproni

Thing 6: A Campaign To Have Hillary Elected By The Electoral College

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If this election has left you distraught, fear no more. There are already movements in action to help our nation before it collapses. Please feel free to voice your opinion through this Change.org campaign that leaves the Internet with the power to make amends with the trouble we’ve caused our beloved country. America was great as it was, and if there’s more than a few of us who concur, then nothing is out of our reach. Let this petition give you another chance at letting your voice be heard. – Cevenly

Thing 7: Loverboy’s “Working for the Weekend”

Earlier this week, the website for Canadian immigration crashed (for obvious reasons). So, in honor of the upcoming surge in Canada’s population, I’ve been jamming to some Loverboy, the quintessentially American rock band that somehow came out of Calgary almost forty years ago. This week has been a whirlwind of not-so-pleasant surprises and political strife at this point we’re all just waiting for the weekend to arrive and give us some temporary respite from this mess. Then Monday will come around all too soon and we’ll be right back where we started, but as Loverboy says, “everyone’s hoping it’ll all work out.” – Ruby Johnson

The Thing After Miley Loses Count But Still Miraculously Adds Up To 7: Peace, Love, Understanding

As I walk through this wicked world, searchin’ for light in the darkness of insanity I ask myself, Is all hope lost? Is there only pain and hatred, and misery? And each time I feel like this inside, there’s one thing I wanna know: What’s so funny ’bout peace love & understanding? – Steve J (and Elvis Costello)

November 11, 2016

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