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  • Tuesday, December 11, 2007
    nothing

    Youssou N'Dour performed the closing show of his current US tour before a sold-out crowd at the Somerville Theatre, outside Boston. According to the Herald, "the singer with the astounding pipes" led the audience through "two sweaty, dance-inducing hours" of songs throughout his career, including his latest album, Rokku Mi Rokka (Give and Take). And by the end of the show, writes the Herald's Bob Young, "N’Dour left no doubt that he—and Africa—still rule the world of scintillating powerhouse grooves." In last night's tour closer, "N’Dour showed why he’s one of pop music’s most commanding performers."

    Journal Topics: On Tour Reviews
  • Tuesday, December 11, 2007
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    "It's bloody wonderful." That's how David Ansen describes the Tim Burton–directed Sweeney Todd in the latest issue of Newsweek. Ansen finds the film to be faithful to the Stephen Sondheim musical, itself the source of "some of the most beautiful, witty and disturbing songs in the musical-theater canon." Time says: "Burton and Depp infuse the brilliant cold steel of Stephen Sondheim's score with a burning passion." The Hollywood Reporter says that "the show couldn't have fallen into better hands ... Depp is a Sweeney Todd for the ages." Billboard exclaims: "Johnny Depp is pretty much perfect."

    Journal Topics: Film Reviews
  • Monday, December 10, 2007
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    Johnny Depp and Tim Burton grace the cover of New York magazine's Best of 2007 issue this week, which wittily names the duo's film version of Sweeney Todd "The Best Serial Killer Musical Ever!" Inside the magazine is a more serious evaluation from critic David Edelstein of "Tim Burton's brilliantly intense adaptation of Stephen Sondheim's great musical." Edelstein compliments Depp and his co-star Helena Bonham Carter for their "riveting" performances and Burton for filming the duo "with such loving intimacy that their fever takes hold."

    Journal Topics: Film Reviews
  • Monday, December 10, 2007
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    The LA Film Critics Association has named There Will Be Blood the best picture of the year and its director, Paul Thomas Anderson, and star, Daniel Day-Lewis, best in their categories as well. Now, critics on the East Coast are adding their praise, too. In this week's New Yorker, David Denby calls the film "an enthralling and powerfully eccentric American epic ... magnificent."

    Journal Topics: Film Reviews
  • Monday, December 10, 2007
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    As Youssou N'Dour prepares for the last stop on his US tour, tonight at the Somerville Theatre, the Boston Globe's Siddhartha Mitter reflects on the impact the "wildly talented" singer/songwriter has had as a key figure in contributing to and re-defining the genre of world music. "[H]is own work, exemplified by his newest album, Rokku Mi Rokka, and its 2005 predecessor, Egypt, is as fresh and searching as it has been in years." The Globe's Tristram Lozaw's review of the new album calls it "a defining album that showcases N'Dour at his organic best."

    Journal Topics: Reviews
  • Sunday, December 9, 2007
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    Tim Burton's film adaptation of Stephen Sondheim's Sweeney Todd scores a perfect 100 on the Rotten Tomatoes rating meter, which averages all the critics' reviews from across the country.

    Journal Topics: Film Reviews
  • Thursday, December 6, 2007
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    With the Sweeney Todd soundtrack out in just over a week, it's no wonder the Chicago Tribune is saying that "the highly anticipated holiday movie season brings with it not just some of the best movies of the year but some of the most distinctive score soundtracks as well." Writes Richard Knight Jr.: "This is a great finale to what has been a signature year for soundtrack lovers," not least "an intimate, seductive Sweeney Todd."

    Journal Topics: Film Reviews
  • Thursday, December 6, 2007
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    "In many ways, a collaboration between [David] Byrne and [Robert] Wilson was perfect," says Pitchfork's review of The Knee Plays. Bringing the material to CD for the first time, with previously unreleased bonus tracks, the Nonesuch reissue includes "a dense recollection of the pair's mind-meld by Byrne himself." And yet, even "extracted from its theatrical roots, Byrne's score holds up remarkably well."

    Journal Topics: Reviews
  • Thursday, December 6, 2007
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    Among the many roles Youssou N'Dour has come to play, he has come to be known "as one of the planet's true superstars and a beacon of African pride," says the Chicago Tribune. At Wednesday's Chicago House of Blues show, N'Dour's singing was "as strong and rich as it's ever been," and his band, Super Étoile de Dakar proved itself "the rare band entirely deserving of the 'super,' perfectly composed to push ahead but constantly poised for stop-on-a-dime shifts."

    Journal Topics: On Tour Reviews
  • Wednesday, December 5, 2007
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    Jonny Greenwood is featured among the "pitch perfect" film composers showcased in the Los Angeles Times. In the paper, Dennis Lim writes that Greenwood's score for Paul Thomas Anderson's new film, There Will Be Blood, marks an even greater role for the already major part music plays in Anderson's films. "In Paul Thomas Anderson's films, music is not just significant," writes Lim, "it's often front and center, impossible to ignore ... and his use of music reaches new heights of inspiration in There Will Be Blood."

    Journal Topics: Reviews
  • Wednesday, December 5, 2007
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    Alarm Will Sound gave the world premiere performance of John Adams's Son of Chamber Symphony last weekend at Stanford University, and the reviews continue to roll in. The San Francisco Chronicle, calls the new piece “vivacious,” writing that it “bursts with the technical prowess and cogent wit of the composer's finest efforts.” The Financial Times points to the group's prowess in pulling off the "dangerously exhilarating" piece with aplomb. The San Jose Mercury News praises "the crackerjack new-music ensemble."

    Journal Topics: Reviews
  • Tuesday, December 4, 2007
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    When Sérgio and Odair Assad joined the Adelaide Symphony Orchestra for two concerts at the Adelaide Guitar Festival in Australia this past weekend, the performance was "one of the most exhilarating on record" for the ASO, according to the Adelaide Advertiser. The program featured Ravel's Rhapsodie Espagnole, which showcased the syncopated rhythms "the Brazilian brothers have in their blood, along with a sense of lyricism rare among their kind." Also on the program were selections from Sérgio's arrangement of Piazzolla's Four Seasons of Buenos Aires, which, complementing the orchestra's strings and winds, was "drawn even further into the Argentinian ambiance by the warmth and clarity of the two guitars."

    Journal Topics: Reviews

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