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THE PLAY LIST

It’s my duty as the arts desk mil­len­nial to keep up with pop cul­ture’s lat­est come-up princess, and a lit­tle mum­ble rap ain’t ever hurt no­body. As the al­bum’s name sug­gests, In­va­sion of Pri­vacy lets us into Cardi B’s mind with its gen­er­ously emo­tional, in­ti­mate and hi­lar­i­ous bars. Un­for­tu­nately, I have noth­ing mean­ing­ful to say about how the al­bum will change your life and I’m not ready to la­bel her a word­smith. What I will say is that it’s a great com­ple­ment to Mi­gos’s al­bum Cul­ture II and it’s per­fect for young grooves. (ZH)

Ahead of the premiere of her fea­ture doc­u­men­tary at the Encounters Doc­u­men­tary Fes­ti­val and two-city tour in South Africa next month, I had the plea­sure of watch­ing the quintessen­tially M.I.A. film at the Hot Docs doc­u­men­tary fes­ti­val in Toronto ear­lier this month. Di­rected by her univer­sity class­mate, Stephen Loveridge, this is part an ob­ser­va­tion, part per­sonal es­say in which M.I.A.’s dy­namic life story over­flows from within the self-cap­tured frames of her life as the daugh­ter of a rebel strug­gle leader in Sri Lanka to grow­ing up in the United King­dom, de­tail­ing her mu­sic ca­reer, ac­tivism and com­mit­ment to her art. (MB)

Re­cently, more for Let­ter­man than for JAY-Z, I watched his in­ter­view se­ries My Next Guest. The con­tent of the JAY-Z in­ter­view was, I guess, to be ex­pected, and Let­ter­man was a flat­ter­ing and con­ver­sa­tional in­ter­viewer. But the re­ally nifty trick was his in­clu­sion of a record­ing ses­sion at Rick Ru­bin’s home stu­dio. It fea­tured a singer I had never heard be­fore (Madi­son Ryann Ward) per­form­ing a solo song and then a duet with a band mem­ber or pro­ducer-type guy. With Ru­bin be­ing tan­gen­tially linked to Hov (they have col­lab­o­rated be­fore), it felt, how­ever neb­u­lously, like I had some­how got to know JAY-Z more with this stu­dio en­counter than with the in­ter­view. (KS)

THE READ­ING LIST

This book trou­bles me. It trou­bles me be­cause I am afraid that it will not give me the com­plete so­lace I have yearned for as a queer some­body try­ing to rec­on­cile the re­la­tion­ship be­tween my faith and my sex­u­al­ity. For this rea­son, I have put off read­ing it for two weeks. But with no more ex­cuses for why I can’t start, I’m about to dive in. (ZH)

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