Art, Books, Films, Lists, Music, Personal, TV
Leave a comment

A top (x) list of consumed media from 2017

That is… a gross title, but here we are. I haven’t been around on here (obviously) but I figured I’d ease into it a little bit by writing about things that are easier to write, i.e. lists of things I enjoyed as opposed to a check-in, i.e. how am I, how am I, which is what my family is probably going to appreciate more. But we’re not having that today.

Because my memory is kind of gone, also, this is probably not an accurate list. I’ll likely see something I want to edit out, etc. two seconds after publishing, but such is life.


Julien Baker at Union Chapel, London

Albums

Once upon a time, Brand New’s Science Fiction had a sure spot on this list. If you’re not familiar with the emo news circuit — which, who is anymore? — Jesse Lacey was accused (and admitted to with a… sorta apology/non-apology) of sexual abuse of a minor when he was 24 years old¹. So, yes. Everything I feel about Brand New is in shambles (but I don’t want to get into that right now—I am now a master of deflection); here’s a better (I think?) list:

  1. Julien Baker’s Turn Out the Lights — gives shape to all your deep-buried sorrows, brings them to the surface, and reassures that darkness can co-exist with light
  2. The National’s Sleep Well Beast — Matt Berninger whisper-sings intimations of a life flashing before your eyes, sometimes out of order
  3. Phoebe Bridgers’ Stranger in the Alps — melancholy mountain music to put on whilst on the tube, thinking about mortality and how you got to where you are
  4. Rostam’s Half-Light — it’s like resurfacing from being submerged in a lake to warmth and the sun in your eyes
  5. Lorde’s Melodrama — post-hedonism sadness with no regret, set to music you can’t help but dance to
  6. Sorority Noise’s You’re Not As _____ As You Think — honest and open; unlikely lifeline for when you are edging closer to the edge
  7. Jay Som’s Everybody Works — warm, easy music for languid summer drives or day-time lounging
  8. Vagabon’s Infinite Worlds — so far, my favourite winter blanket
  9. Japanese Breakfast’s Soft Sounds from Another Planet — somehow makes you want to play the guitar?
  10. Waxahatchee’s Out in the Storm — sounds like the cool girl you’ve (I’ve) always wanted to be

Other notables: Wolf Parade’s Cry Cry Cry, Sufjan Stevens’ The Greatest Gift, Big Thief’s Capacity, Alvvays’ Anti-Socialites, St. Vincent’s Masseduction, Molly Burch’s Please Be Mine, Paramore’s After Laughter, and Harry Styles’ self-titled debut.

EDIT: … As predicted, a late addition: Courtney Barnett and Kurt Vile’s Lotta Sea Lice is also really good.

Books

I read a lot this year, especially towards the end… but I didn’t read a lot of books in full. Here are the ones I really liked, out of the 19 I finished as of writing. Not all of them were published in 2017, so… uh, sorry about that.

  1. A City Inside by Tillie Walden
  2. Confabulations by John Berger
  3. 300 Arguments by Sarah Manguso
  4. All the Lives I Want by Alana Massey
  5. True Stories by Sophie Calle
  6. So Sad Today by Melissa Broder

* Complete list of finished titles can be found here.


from Thelma

Movies

Movies, I find hard to track because I don’t… keep track, haha. But in (very) recent memory, the films released this year that I thoroughly enjoyed are Lady Bird (Greta Gerwig), heartwarming coming-of-age and Very Much My Jam; Call Me By Your Name (Luca Guadagnino), the very beautiful cause of many sleepless nights spent lying in residual want; Don’t Break Down (Tim Irwin and Keith Schieron), exhilarating and sad (?) Jawbreaker documentary that awakened a latent crush on Blake Schwarzenbach which thankfully went away; and Thelma (Joachim Trier), beautiful and mysterious with large spaces of quiet meant to keep your feelings expanding.

Very sure I’m forgetting like… a lot, but other fun films I enjoyed watching were Spider-man: Homecoming, Kong: Skull Island, and Star Wars: The Last Jedi.

Television

I basically subsisted on television this year, but here are my favourite 2017 releases (in no particular order).

  1. Insecure season 2
  2. Easy season 2
  3. BoJack Horseman season 4
  4. American Vandal
  5. The Bold Type
  6. Alias Grace
  7. The Americans season 5
  8. Master of None, season 2
  9. Star Trek: Discovery
  10. Grace and Frankie season 3
  11. The Good Place season 2A
  12. Teen Wolf season 6B
  13. One Day at a Time
  14. Halt and Catch Fire season 4

EDIT: Also enjoying Runaways a lot!


Bruce Nauman

Art shows or pieces

(In no particular order, and excludes shows I or my family was part of because, well… those are a very not impartial given.)

  1. Nan Goldin’s The Ballad of Sexual Dependency at the MoMA, New York
  2. Bruce Conners’s “Crossroads” from Dreamlands: Immersive Cinema and Art, 1905–2016 at the Whitney, New York
  3. Mariano Ching and Yasmin Sison’s Traveling on the Edges of Lost Maps at MO_Space, Manila
  4. D, a group show curated by Gary-Ross Pastrana at Vinyl on Vinyl, Manila
  5. Elaine Navas’s Nothing Moves Itself at Artinformal, Manila
  6. Nilo Ilarde’s Fools of the Trade at Artinformal, Manila
  7. Arthur Jafa’s Love is the Message, the Message is Death at Store Studios (co-presented by the Serpentine Galleries and The Vinyl Factory), London
  8. TJ Wilcox’s Gentlemen at Sadie Coles, London
  9. Artist Rooms: Bruce Nauman at Tate Modern, London
  10. Artist Rooms: Joseph Beuys at Tate Modern, London
  11. Marie Harnett’s Still at Alan Cristea Gallery, London
  12. Bernardo Pacquing at Silverlens Galleries, Manila
  13. Wade Guyton: Das New Yorker Atelier, Abridged at the Serpentine Galleries, London
  14. Basquiat: Boom for Real at the Barbican Art Gallery, London

Let me know if you want to know more about a particular thing, but I’m sure people on Google can better help you out with that. What are your favourites from this year?

———
¹ I was supposed to see them in London, mid-November, but news broke out just a few days before, which led to them cancelling their show. I got my money from the (scalped) ticket refund, and although I feel kind of bad that I never got to see them, I think my heart would have shattered even more if I saw them play and then found out about the abuse.

Featured image from TJ Wilcox’s Gentlemem