Category Archives: reviews

‘Musicians and writers choose their favourite book about music’.. 

Elvis as a young man – the size of Mick Jagger’s genitalia – Kristin Hersh’s miracle year – Berlioz in love … As festivalgoers crowd the stages at Glastonbury – Brian Eno – Beck – Lavinia Greenlaw – James Wood … Continue reading

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‘GitHub Atom’s Code-Editor Nerds Take Over Their Universe’.. 

Atom is a symbol for a changing software world—an open source tool that can be used to build itself. Wanstrath is the co-founder and CEO of GitHub and in those days he was busy building the company into the center … Continue reading

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‘The Clegg catastrophe’.. 

The long read: Did the Lib Dems sell out their principles — or just lose their way? Patrick Wintour and Nicholas Watt examine the electoral disaster that has nearly destroyed the party. The party’s result at the general election one … Continue reading

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‘The enigma of Kanye West – and how the world’s biggest pop star ended up being its most reviled too’.. 

Everything Kanye West does is an event, from the smallest interview to the biggest show. As he prepares to headline Glastonbury, one writer considers how West became the divisive figure he is. Understanding why Kanye is Kanye first requires understanding … Continue reading

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‘America’s Next Top Chef Is a Supercomputer From IBM’.. 

Plug in your ingredients – and the computer will churn out recipes you’d never imagined. Today they just released the public version of Chef Watson with Bon Appetit – an app that’s designed to help home cooks come up with … Continue reading

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‘Time Travel Through Hip-Hop History With Fresh Dressed’.. 

Sacha Jenkins’ documentary explores the lines between hip-hop – fashion – self expression – and how they relate to one another in a very connected world. And Dapper Dan – a renowned Harlem designer in the 1980s who would go … Continue reading

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‘Paleo Diet Only Makes Sense If You Don’t Understand Human Evolution’.. 

Don’t be fooled by the evolutionary scientific explanations – – which are now out of date. (cont..) Source: Paleo Diet Only Makes Sense If You Don’t Understand Human Evolution | Alternet

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‘What do you get if you mix Brahms with Radiohead?’.. 

The end of musical civilisation as we know it – says Tom Service. Epic hoax – or compelling and captivating – what do you think of a symphonic project that melds Brahms’s First Symphony with Radiohead’s OK Computer? Readers, meet … Continue reading

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‘Morgan goes all in with electric trike’.. 

Morgan has revealed the first images of an electrically powered three-wheeler concept car which it says will enter production in 2016. The EV3, as the concept is called – will be the second full-electric vehicle the UK-based company has produced … Continue reading

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‘Downward facing doom: when yoga meets heavy metal’.. 

Trying to become zen while listening to Napalm Death might sound like a nightmare to some – but a growing number of converts are riding the lightning and stretching out to metal’s dark soundtrack. Any workout playlist can be improved … Continue reading

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‘Bridget Christie: ‘Feminists never have sex and hate men opening doors for them – even into other dimensions’.. 

What is feminism? In this exclusive extract from A Book For Her – the standup comedian tells you everything you need to know about the movement that is the sole cause of the recession – global warming – and terrorism. … Continue reading

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‘Nina Simone: ‘Are you ready to burn buildings?’.. 

From singing the soundtrack to the civil rights movement to living in self-imposed exile in Liberia, Nina Simone never chose the easy path. As a new documentary is released, Dorian Lynskey looks at the angry – lonely life of a … Continue reading

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‘NZ Film Festival picks from the programme’.. 

Must see movies at this year’s New Zealand International Film Festival.  Being Evel Jackass’s Johnny Knoxville is one of the producers behind this warts and all look at the life of one of her heroes and inspirations – US icon Robert ‘Evel’ … Continue reading

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‘Otis Redding’s last week: The tragic story of ‘Dock of the Bay’ and a fateful final flight’.. 

The soul icon recorded the song he might be best known for — then left Nashville on the plane that’d take his life. Back at East McLemore Street on December 7 1967 – most of the session players had dispersed … Continue reading

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‘The prize: When news of the Beatles’ imminent financial danger spread – notorious manager Allen Klein knew his time had come’.. 

Klein pursued the Beatles for years, to the point of spooking Lennon. But meeting with John & Yoko sealed the deal. Apple was the prototypical hippie corporation: altruistic – optimistic – off the cuff  – and clueless. When McCartney invited people to … Continue reading

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‘Book Review: The Divide – American Injustice in the Age of the Wealth Gap’..

In journalist Matt Taibbi’s latest book, The Divide, readers are lead through a justice system which is full of injustices. The sections of Matt Taibbi’s latest book The Divide – vacillate between two different worlds: the first is one of … Continue reading

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‘Urine trouble at Glastonbury: Kanye – that amber liquid they’re throwing isn’t beer’..

‘I hope someone lugs a bottle of warm urine at that muppet Kanye West at Glasto so his face comes out in piss-blisters’ joked a Twitter user ahead of the rapper’s upcoming Saturday night headline act. Yet as the fateful … Continue reading

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‘The Soylent Revolution: Why Is a Food Powder Many Think Tastes Like Semen Increasing Its Sales?’.. 

Bland alt-foods are all the rage – but why? (cont..) Source: The Soylent Revolution: Why Is a Food Powder Many Think Tastes Like Semen Increasing Its Sales? | Alternet

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‘Pure Shit rewatched – a see-it-to-believe-it classic – beset by off-screen debauchery’.. 

Part time capsule – part black satire – part junked-up party pic – the little-known drug crime-caper was called ‘the most evil film ever’. Every once in a while – behind-the-scenes stories about problems beleaguering a feature film production are … Continue reading

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‘The 20 photographs of the week’.. 

The continuing crisis in Syria – the South Carolina church shooting – the 200th anniversary of the Battle of Waterloo – the best photography in news – culture and sport from around the world this week. Warning: this gallery includes … Continue reading

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‘The impossible world of MC Escher’.. 

He was dismissed by the art world and venerated by mathematicians … he rejected both Mick Jagger’s and Stanley Kubrick’s attempts to schmooze him. So who was the mysterious MC Escher, master of illusion?  The artist who created some of … Continue reading

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‘Steve Braunias: Life on the road’.. 

I had everything I needed for my epic speaking tour of the South Island – no sleep until Invercargill – where I didn’t sleep a wink. Bus tickets. Black suit in its dry-cleaning plastic wrap. Shoe-shine kit. David Beckham aftershave. … Continue reading

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‘Amy director Asif Kapadia on the heartbreaking – compelling film that introduces a new side to Amy Winehouse’.. 

Senna – his Bafta-winning documentary about the Brazilian Formula 1 racing driver – established Asif Kapadia as one of Britain’s most audacious documentarians. Now the 43-year old filmmaker has turned his attention to another icon who died too young – … Continue reading

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‘Inside the mind of Bernie Sanders: unbowed – unchanged – and unafraid of a good fight’.. 

  He is the rising star of the battle to be the Democratic nominee for president. But who is the real Bernie Sanders? His close friends and family shed new light on what is motivating the 73-year-old senator – while … Continue reading

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‘Twelve of the world’s most beautiful bookshops – in pictures’..  

 From an underground carpark in China to a converted theatre in Argentina, take a look at some of the most stunning bookshops around the world. (cont..) Source: Twelve of the world’s most beautiful bookshops – in pictures | Books | … Continue reading

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‘A Guide to Mass Shootings in America’.. 

The devastating attack at the church in Charleston marks at least 70 mass shootings in the US since 1982. It is perhaps too easy to forget how many times this has happened. The horrific mass murder at a movie theater … Continue reading

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‘First the gangsters – then the bankers: how The Long Good Friday foretold the future’..

The classic thriller predicted the rise of Thatcherism and the transformation of London’s Docklands into an area of unbridled commerce. For the re-release of the film – I revisited the streets where mobsters once ran wild. At the start of … Continue reading

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Top 10 life lessons from books of the past

Got issues? Whether you worry about how to leave parties – need to get rid of bedbugs – or simply want tips on impressing super-excellent ladies – a book historian has dusted down a library of ageless wisdom. Got issues? … Continue reading

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‘Lifting children out of poverty’.. 

If we want to resist the trends dividing New Zealanders into the haves and the never-wills, the OECD has some policy suggestions the Government could take on board. One is to index the main welfare benefits to the average wage … Continue reading

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‘Carrick Graham: Without Apologies’..  

Peter Newport explores the dark arts of persuasion with the master – Carrick Graham – a star player in Nicky Hager’s book Dirty Politics. Swinburn is one of 33 eminent New Zealand public health scientists who wrote to John Key … Continue reading

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‘Revealed: The Secret Gear Connecting Google’s Online Empire’.. 

For a decade Google has been building the networking equipment that runs its online empire in secret. Today it’s raising the curtain. Google’s online empire is unusual. It is likely the largest on earth. But as the rest of the … Continue reading

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‘Wellington emergency doctor calls for pure ecstasy to be made legal’.. 

Pure MDMA is safer than alcohol and should be legal – an emergency department doctor says. Emergency medical specialist and clinical toxicologist Paul Quigley said there was mounting evidence that MDMA – the unadulterated base for ecstasy –  was one … Continue reading

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‘Dear Twitter (and everyone else) – please end your obsession with autoplay!’.. 

Autoplaying videos – gifs and Vines look pretty – sure – but battery life – mobile data allowances – and smartphone performance are all far more important to users. Twitter has just introduced auto-playing video Vines and gifs on mobile. … Continue reading

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‘People power: the secret to Montreal’s success as a bike-friendly city’.. 

Peter Walker meets Bicycle Bob and the activists whose 1970s ‘die-ins’ and theatrical stunts kickstarted the Canadian city’s unlikely bike culture. When it comes to cycling Montreal has a few undeniable drawbacks. For a start it’s hilly – the streets … Continue reading

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‘The Doors: 10 of the best’.. 

    The Doors remain one of the most influential band of the 60s – with charismatic frontman Jim Morrison and songs that swirl with poetry – sex and death. Few bands divide critical opinion like the Doors. For some … Continue reading

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‘Swapping real life for reality TV’.. 

Reality television is a contradiction in terms. You don’t have to have read Marshall McLuhan or studied semiotics to know that. The well-publicised financial woes of TV3’s owners may seem to lend plausibility to the complaint that Campbell Live didn’t … Continue reading

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‘How Apple’s Transcendent Chihuahua Killed the Revolution’.. 

Few are excited about the Apple Watch—its burdens are too easily imagined. And yet we treat it as an inevitability. How did this happen? But to issue complaints about usability misses the point of the iPhone – even all those … Continue reading

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‘Microdosing: A New – Low-Key Way – to Use Psychedelics’.. 

Some of the most surprising people are using LSD and other psychedelics in extremely low doses – – and the results are most interesting. (cont..) Source: Microdosing: A New, Low-Key Way to Use Psychedelics | Alternet

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‘The 11 PlayStation games you absolutely cannot miss in the coming year’.. 

From Last Guardian – Uncharted 4 and Dreams to Destiny – Project Morpheus and Call of Duty Black Ops III – here’s everything you need to know. Sony showed off a large collection of new games – gave new details … Continue reading

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‘Bosses’ pay up 325% in decade’.. 

The pay of New Zealand’s top long-serving bosses has gone up by an average of 325 per cent over a decade.  These marathon executives – all of whom were in the job for at least the past 10 years – … Continue reading

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