Climate change: What’s more likely? « Blog on the Run: Reloaded

Graphic made the rounds on Facebook – finally available in linkable blog form.

Then you have the strangest comment, implying that governments all want to spend their money to … crash the economy? Create a hoax? What?

Climate change: What’s more likely? « Blog on the Run: Reloaded

Pink Floyd’s fractured relationship eased by one song?

In my high school guitarist days, I had a book of guitar tabs with famous riffs and solos. I can’t play solos like David Gilmour’s breathtaking run on Comfortably Numb worth squat anymore, but I gained an appreciation for the brilliance behind them.

My six-string noodling and convenient timing — Pink Floyd’s first tour sans Roger Waters passed through the Triangle twice while I was in school — gave me a bit of a bias toward Gilmour’s side in the dispute over all things Floyd. I usually viewed Waters as an egotist who simply sought to bend the rest of the band to his will.

The truth is more complex, of course, and I’ve gained a great appreciation for the yin-yang pulls that are behind some terrific music.

Before reading this piece, I hadn’t thought of Comfortably Numb as the last great meeting point of Gilmour’s melodic sensibilities and Waters’ twisted but heartfelt worldview. But it’s absolutely right.

As a whole, The Wall doesn’t quite stand up as strongly to me — I think it owes a lot of its longevity to another bit of convenient timing, the fall of a real-life Wall in Germany upon which Waters’ metaphor can barely be stretched. The themes are interesting, but Waters had gained too much of the upper hand in his arguments with Gilmour, who was struggling to be heard.

Comfortably Numb, though, is still a standout track. You may hear Another Brick in the Wall more often on rock radio, but it has less to offer beyond a couple of good lyrical and melodic hooks.

This Popdose piece offers several new ways to look at the creative process, from demos before the song’s recording to live versions afterwards. And it shows how Waters and Gilmour have remained united by this brilliant work, to the point of putting aside decades of conflict to perform it together on a couple of occasions.

(I thought the cellist in the 2002 performance looked a bit like Ellie Kemper of The Office. Turns out she’s Caroline Dale, who has had quite a bit of success in both the pop and classical worlds.)

The Life and Times of “Comfortably Numb” | Popdose.

The inept, inaccurate labels of “left” and “right”

Parties — particularly when they’re in the minority — care more about power than policy. Perhaps there’s nothing much to be done about this. And as I said, it isn’t clear that the media, or anyone else, should try. But it puts the lie to the narrative that America is really riven by grand ideological disagreements. America is deeply divided on the question of which party should be in power at any given moment. Much of the polarization over policy is driven by that question, not the other way around.

via Why Voters Shouldn’t Trust Their Own Political Party: Ezra Klein – Bloomberg.

I’ll disagree with Klein in one sense — the media absolutely should make a bigger deal out of this. Reporters shouldn’t leave this kind of analysis to Jon Stewart and Stephen Colbert.

Heavy classical music

This story shouldn’t be a surprise. Heavy metal owes a great debt to classical music, particularly the more bombastic efforts around the turn of the century. There’s a reason the Trans-Siberian Orchestra, purveyors of a “heavy” orchestral Christmas-radio staple, draws some of its personnel from turgid metal band Savatage.

One day, I’m going to make a Spotify playlist of rock music for classical fans to enjoy. Get ready for a good dose of Knights of Cydonia.

Take note: Why fans of heavy metal and classical music have a lot in common | Mail Online.