I finally got a copy of the new album by Det Vackra Livet. It has actually only been out for a couple of weeks now but I have been dying to hear this album! I fell hard for the Mary Onettes a couple of years ago when they released their second album Islands in 2009. Things sure seem to happen in cycles. The last Mary Onettes album came out about the same time as the first Cold Cave album and another Morrissey compilation and now all 3 have releases this month again! Maybe Morrissey just releases too many albums...but I don't think there really could ever be enough. Some might say that the debut self titled Mary Onettes album from 2007 is even better than Islands, and I go back and forth on which I like better but they are both essential albums that you should own. The band is from Sweden, which is reason enough to fall in love with the Mary Onettes! I am telling you, I just love Sweden. They mix an 80s sort of Ultravox and Pet Shop Boys sound with maybe some Sigur Ros and the twee sounds of Belle & Sebastian.
The two brothers from The Mary Onettes have just released a new album in their native tongue -- Philip and Henrik Ekstrom are now known as Det Vackra Livet for this new project. It has all of the elements that I love from The Mary Onettes, just without the English. This is beautiful stuff. I have been really loving this new album which was released on the same excellent label that released The Mary Onettes albums, Labrador... which of course has my name right in the middle of it, so of course I was going to love this label! They have put out some of my favorites over the last decade from artists like The Acid House Kings, who also just released a fantastic new album, as well as my favorites Radio Dept. and The Legends. And Pelle Carlberg! And Club 8 and The Sound of Arrows! This label can seriously do no wrong. They have been so consistently awesome that I really don't even understand how they do it. But I thank them for it. Please do yourself a favor and check out this new album from Det Vackra Livet. You will not regret it.
RuPaul Charles' Drag Race is one of the most enjoyable television shows in existence. Like a phoenix rising from the ashes, after years of being ignored, RuPaul has taken his career into his own well-manicured hands, fashioning a program of sheer pleasure about what he knows and does best: the art (and it is truly an art, of this I am sure) of drag. Queens from across the country (and let's not forget the incredible artists from Puerto Rico, too) gather together in an unmarked Los Angeles studio to compete under a simple banner: "May the best woman win!"
It's not just about the competing queens, though. On the show, Ru brings so much eleganza! She is truly the ultimate Mother; The program features contestants who may feel they have never fit in anywhere and introduces them to other dolls who become like family. Sure, they fight, there's some shady shade thrown, and ultimately a climactic "Lipsync for your life," but in the end, there's always Ru's constant proclamation, "If you can't love yourself, how in the hell you gonna love somebody else...." as the queens take to the runway once more and dance the show out to cries of "Let the music play!" The show exists as a small utopia where all those who are labeled "different" can come together and express themselves to the max, be appreciated for who they are, and finally, dance the night away. Seeing the process unfold over each season is inspiring, fun and exhilarating. At its core, under all that makeup and duct tape, RuPaul's Drag Race is about celebrating self expression, cheesy as that sounds, and it is often quite touching to witness. It's truly a feel-good reality show, and yes, I know how oxymoronic that sounds.
Everyone else not covered by the above catagories!
You may remember Hedda from Season 5 of Project Runway when she had the misfortune to work with fashion no-no Suede.
Do humanity a favor, won't you, and take a couple seconds to vote for her? Thanks!