Established 1874.

The Oberlin Review

Unsung Heroes: An Overview of The Oscars’ Best Original Score Nominees

Sonia Wurzel

March 4, 2011

Filed under ARTS, Music

Sunday night was Hollywood’s prom: the glitzy and glamorous 83rd annual Academy Awards, a night to honor those who work in the film industry. Of course, the focus of the event is always on the prestigious (overrated? predictable, maybe?) Best Picture award, but as was made clear in the presentation for this year’s Best Original Score award, music also plays an essential role in Oscar-nominated movies. Historically, music has always served as an intrinsic element of film. During the silent film era, pianists would play live music alongside film reels, imbuing the film with nuance, tension and emotion. While films no longer require live accompanists, a good score can still make or break a movie, enhancing the dialogue...

Boreyko Stirs Fire in Cleveland Orchestra

Boreyko Stirs Fire in Cleveland Orchestra

March 4, 2011

As part of its annual Oberlin Artist Recital Series visit, the Cleveland Orchestra showcased new and upcoming talent during its performance last Friday evening. Although typically directed by conductor Franz Welser-Möst, last Friday’s performance showcased the artistry of Russian-born Andrey Boreyko, who led a program featuring Igor Stravinsky’s Divertimento: Suite from “The Fairy’s Kiss,” Peteris Vasks’s English Horn Concerto and Sergei Prokofiev’s Fifth Symphony in B-flat Major. ...

A Bit Too Much Schmutz on Jerusalem of Gold

Moze Halperin, Staff Writer

March 4, 2011

Filed under ARTS, Music, Theater & Film

A lot of people might shudder at the thought of publicizing the exploits of their time studying abroad, let alone publicizing them musically — not merely out of embarrassment, but out of humility. Few will ever write about the spiritual journey they underwent on pub crawls, or the identity crisis they endured every time they submitted to the ruthlessness of foreign plumbing. A short story, maybe. A limerick, certainly. But… a musical? A musical is bold. A musical is big. A musical is vulnerable. So kvetching about a musical should be easy. When turning any event into a musical, one is already taking a huge risk: A musical is a heightened and hyperactive representation of reality that more often than not sacrifices...

Born this Woah: Going Gaga for New Video

Sarp Yavuz, Staff Writer

March 4, 2011

Filed under ARTS, Music

Through a neon pink triangle emerges a unicorn of space and stars. The leitmotif from Hitchcock’s Vertigois playing in the background. Another pink triangle descends over the image of the unicorn, and this time we see a blond, masked figure. The camera turns over to reveal that the mask is the back of Lady Gaga’s head, and a voiceover drones, “This is the manifesto of Mother Monster.” Sitting in front of large crystal shards, Lady Gaga has a large, rising hairdo, small horns on her forehead, cheekbone and shoulder extensions and an eyeball over her chin. The image has the distinct feel of Fritz Lang’sMetropolis with Gaga a more human version of Ridley Scott’s Alien Queen. The chin-eye is a referenc...

Australian Synth Swampdwellers, Cut Copy, Clear Dance Floor with Messy Zonoscope

Jamie Helmsworth

February 25, 2011

Filed under ARTS, Music

For those unfamiliar with Australian cultural trends, let me bring you up to speed: They like to party. Remember the viral video of the kid with “famous sunglasses” who threw a house party that turned into a riot while his parents were gone? He’s Australian. Do you know where will.i.am discovered the electro-for-dummies sound the Black Eyed Peas have stuck to since TheE.N.D.? Yes, the famed land of kangaroos and wallabies. Yet oddly enough, the continent’s love of partying has not directly translated into pop-music greatness. Sure, they’ve presented us with the gifts of AC/DC and Nick Cave, but INXS, Jet and Wolfmother were also spawned in Sydney’s cesspools. Fortunately, Cut Copy falls into the former c...

On the Record: Carolina Chocolate Drops

Ian Seeley, Managing Editor

February 25, 2011

Filed under ARTS, Music, On the Record

What was your most memorable experience at the Grammys, other than winning? [Laughs] I was really sick, so it was all kind of a blur. I mean, it all was memorable. I have to say probably seeing Bobby McFerrin and Esperanza Spalding — who later won the Best New Artist — seeing them do a duet at the beginning of the non-telecast portion. It was amazing. The Carolina Chocolate Drops have a live show with a lot going on, such as dancing and the group giving the historical backgrounds of songs. When you record, do you take any special approaches in addressing the recording studio’s limitations? It’s hard to capture a live feel in the studio. We know what we’re doing this next time, we are recording...

Album Review: Radiohead’s The King of Limbs Reminds Why We Like Pop Music

Album Review: Radiohead’s The King of Limbs Reminds Why We Like Pop Music

February 25, 2011

Perhaps it’s no coincidence that the same week that Lady Gaga’s latest single, “Born This Way,” became the fastest-selling single ever to hit iTunes, resulting in over one million downloads in five days, Radiohead digitally released its eighth album. The two pop-music giants have more in common than one would expect. Both artists have made a career off of acting like freaks: While Lady Gaga intentionally distorts the blonde, glam pop star image to the point of looking (and acting) like...

Uncommitted Crowd Brave Snowy Monday for Homostupids

Uncommitted Crowd Brave Snowy Monday for Homostupids

February 25, 2011

There was a passable crowd at the ’Sco on Monday night, but it seemed as though only a fraction of the turnout was truly excited to see punk band Homostupids, with opening act Aaron Dilloway. Homostupids’s fan base appears to consist of two disparate groups: fanatics and people who are truly indifferent to its music. This polarity was evident by the large number of non-College students at the ’Sco that night — diehard fans who could easily be identified amongst largely nonplussed Ober...

Interview with the JACK Quartet

Interview with the JACK Quartet

February 25, 2011

Why “JACK”? Ari Streisfeld: It’s an acronym — John, Ari, Chris and Kevin. We specialize in contemporary music, and one of the first pieces we played together was the third string quartet by Helmut Lachenmann, the German composer. It’s called “Grido,” which means “scream” in Italian. But it is also an acronym for the members of the Arditti Quartet, for whom [the piece] was written. While we were working on it, we were joking around saying, “If this piece was written for us, ...

Review: Senior Voice Recital

Meghan Farnsworth

February 18, 2011

Filed under ARTS, Music

Senior Conservatory voice major and soprano Cree Alyse Carrico presented a final recital that showcased her vocal power and brilliance as well as her easy, carefree stage dynamic. Pianist Jenna Douglas acted as a tasteful adornment to Carrico’s commanding and powerful presence. The program featured contemporary works by composers Benjamin Britten, Joaquin Rodrigo and Jake Heggie. The first piece by Britten, “On This Island (Auden),” contained five movements in English. It was written shortly after his parents’ deaths and during a time spent among a group of artists studying the works of poet W.H. Auden. Auden’s complex words and obscure allusions define the lyrical basis for each piece. Within each movement,...

Calvin Johnson and Friends Lead Audience Down Long, Winding Road

Lizzie Conner

February 18, 2011

Filed under ARTS, Music

Calvin Johnson croons un-amplified into the ceiling of Fairchild Chapel, barely skipping a beat when he swings his classical guitar to his back and reverting to a speaking voice to address the audience candidly. About 40 people showed up to celebrate Valentine’s Day with K Record’s “Ring Leader” (his official title at the label), many of whom came to indulge their love for one of his previous bands — Beat Happening, The Halo Benders, or Dub Narcotic Sound System. Johnson is known primarily for these projects and his involvement in the founding of K Records. Until very recently, he has been writing and performing as a solo artist. Despite lacking the rest of his new “band,” The Hive Dwellers, nothing...

Jazz Collective Makes Friends in Beijing

Jazz Collective Makes Friends in Beijing

February 11, 2011

Improvisation was, and always has been, one of those things in life that never came easily to me. As a jazz musician, I always struggle against the urge to solidify everything that ever comes to mind before I get up onstage to play. But if jazz music can teach us anything about life, then improvisation, in all forms, is about as important as respiration. With no exception, this story begins with a toss of the dice. In the summer of 2009, I had the opportunity to study Chinese language in Beijing,...

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