Z Nightly Commentaries
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Recent Z Nightly Commentaries
Bond: Hollow Global Justice
Nov 12, 2007
Eloquent sounds are reverberating into South Africa from faraway lands, and I don't mean thuds from the Rugby World Cup, won by SA's Springboks in Paris last week.
Billet: Punk Rock: Thirty and Still Kicking
Oct 27, 2007
Punk has turned the big three-O. It's echoed in the cover of Spin, in the Halls of Rock n' Roll Fame, even in the actions of the Sex Pistols, who are getting together for (yet another) round of reunion shows. In a way it's scary to see the music that seems to exemplify rock n' roll's live-fast-die-young ethos turn into an adult. On the surface, however, that's exactly what's happened. Looking at the Fallout Boys and My Chemical Romances now holding up the spikey-haired scepter, it's easy to write punk off as thoroughly sterilized, bought-off and ready for the dust-bin of history.
Blum: The Anti-Empire Report
Oct 13, 2007
If not now, when? If not here, where? If not you, who? I used to give thought to what historical time and place I would like to have lived in. Europe in the 1930s was usually my first choice. As the war clouds darkened, I'd be surrounded by intrigue, spies omnipresent, matters of life and death pressing down, the opportunity to be courageous and principled. I pictured myself helping desperate people escape to America. It was real Hollywood stuff; think "Casablanca". And when the Spanish Republic fell to Franco and his fascist forces, aided by the German and Italian fascists (while the United States and Britain stood aside, when not actually aiding the fascists), everything in my imaginary scenario would have heightened -- the fate of Europe hung in the balance. Then the Nazis marched into Austria, then Czechoslovakia, then Poland ... one could have devoted one's life to working against all this, trying to hold back the fascist tide; what could be more thrilling, more noble?
Billet: Rebellion in Light and Dark A talk with photographer Glen E. Friedman about his book on Fugazi
Aug 31, 2007
"Things get accepted into the mainstream and lose their edge." This is one of the first things Glen Friedman tells me in our conversation. Sitting in my Washington DC apartment, it's hard not to agree with Friedman. This is a city that young hipsters a
In three months, the G20 group of major financial powers will join us in South Africa, hosted near Cape Town by the gregarious finance minister Trevor Manuel. As usual the ministers will wine and dine, and protesters will suck teargas.
Have you ever wondered why mainstream radio is so redundant? Why we may hear the same song so many times in one day? Or why so many of the artists sound similar?
Bond: Who killed Sajida Khan?
Jul 18, 2007
Internationally-known environmental activist Sajida Khan passed away on Sunday night, July 15, in her Durban home. Aged 55, she was suffering her second bout of debilitating cancer, and chemotherapy had evacuated her beautiful long hair.
Brecher: A Moratorium Wired to Stop the War
Jul 06, 2007
A Moratorium Wired to Stop the War
Billet: I've Got a CrushÉ Oh God, Make it Stop!
Jun 30, 2007
It gets stuck in your head the way that only the worst music can. "The Macarena." "My Heart Will Go On." "Who Let the Dogs Out?" And now, Obama Girl. The kind of "artist" who has become determined to colonize our brains with the worst kind of mind-co
Blum: The Anti-Empire Report
Jun 23, 2007
What if NBC cheered on a military coup against Bush?
When Queen Elizabeth visited the States last month, the media circus would have made PT Barnum blush. Red carpets were unfurled and black ties adorned by the highest of state officials to welcome the consumate blue-blood, a woman whose utterly parasitic
It's hard to know what to think about Russell Simmons' recent announcement about checking the content of hip-hop. There is no denying that most of us would like the words "bitch," "ho," and "nigger" to disappear from the English lexicon entirely. But al
Twenty-five years. In music, it's a span of time that can be an eternity, and yet last no longer the blink of an eye. So much can change. So much can stay the same.
Artistic integrity breathed a sigh of relief last Thursday. The NME reports that rumors of Radiohead's possible signing with Hear Music are not true. In the world of almost-deals and broken contracts that is the music industry, this isn't particularly n
Blum: The Anti-Empire Report
Mar 21, 2007
Flash! This just in! The Cold War was not a struggle between the United States and the Soviet Union. It was a struggle between the United States and the Third World. What there was, was people all over the Third World fighting for economic and political c
Bond: Elite power and weakness across time and space
Mar 19, 2007
Who thinks coming hostilities with Iran are about military, material and religio-ideological support for Shiite militias, or even construction of a nuclear energy plant? Only in the context of a several-decade scan does the Bush regime's panicky neoconser
The subject has been brought up by so many writers that by now that it's almost clichŽ. It's been asked by musicians, activists old and new, and music journalists alike. And as it's become obvious just how devastating the US' very presence in Iraq has b
Bloc Party has definitely made a huge mark on modern music. Their debut album Silent Alarm displayed an energy and emotional honesty that clearly set them apart from most of the too-cool-for-school attitude of most "indie-rock" bands. It was this that p
Bond: From WSF 'NGO trade fair' to left politics?
Feb 01, 2007
A mixed message - combining celebration and autocritique - is in order, in the wake of the Nairobi World Social Forum. From January 20-25, the 60,000 registered participants heard triumphalist radical rhetoric and yet, too, witnessed persistent defeats f
Johnny got his gun