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TEST SPIN | Drake – Scorpion

Scorpion, Drake’s 5th studio album and 9th overall project, comes at a crucial time in his career. With three studio albums that core fans live and die by, his 4th album, Views, made an attempt to capture his ever-ballooning fanbase — balancing pop hits, club bangers, crooning ballads and a handful of regular raps. The project was widely viewed as his worst album by critics while simultaneously becoming his highest selling album accumulating 4.14 million sales in 2016 and cementing him as the biggest artist in the world. The music world waited in suspense for Scorpion, pondering what he would do: would it be an album for the core fans? Would it be a pop album?

Sun Staff Takeaways from Gov Ball 2018

RANDALL’S ISLAND PARK, NY — Five minutes before Pusha T appeared on stage at the eighth annual Governors Ball on Randall’s Island, a teenager no older than 17 turned to me and remarked matter-of-factly, “This guy wasn’t relevant until a week ago.”

As someone who grew up first on the sounds of Clipse and the Neptunes and later on Kanye West’s GOOD Music collective, the idea that the Daytona rapper was ever “irrelevant” just didn’t make sense to me. Under-recognized or underrated? Perhaps, but Push has been one of the most important rappers in the industry for the past two decades, even if his bars about drug dealing never stormed the charts. And yet, just one week into relevancy, Pusha T’s mere presence was enough to inspire thousands of concertgoers to break out into several spontaneous “Fuck Drake” chants before and throughout the set. In just one week, he had gone from being your favorite rapper’s favorite rapper to slayer of the decade’s most dominant man in music, the “Hotline Bling” king Aubrey Drake Graham.

Courtesy of Pixar Animation Studios

It’s Incredible Too

The Incredibles came out on November 5, 2004 — I was six. Since that date I have started and finished elementary, middle and high school and gone away to college. Last Thursday, though, I, in a theater full of adults, was six again with just one big, red letter “i.” I was Ego finally tasting Ratatouille’s titular dish. Every layer of maturity I thought would float me above the draw of a 14-year-old animated movie’s sequel was shattered the instant that iconic “da da DA da daaaah” filled the theater. I was nostalgically excited when Star Wars came back, but that excitement’s become the cause of fatigue.

Courtesy of LucasFilm

Solo: An Unnecessary Story

Solo: A Star Wars Story’s production was so troubled, it is a miracle that the film even got made. Announced in 2015 to lukewarm reception from fans who believed that any attempt at explaining the smuggler’s backstory would do injustice to the character’s enigma, Phil Lord and Chris Miller were announced as directors but were fired after filming nearly two-thirds of the movie, citing “creative differences” with Lucasfilm. Ron Howard was quickly brought on and, in under eleven months, re-shot almost 70 percent of the film and miraculously finished it in time for its May release date. Yet perhaps this unconventional path to the big screen is fitting for a character like Han Solo; a rebel before Jyn Erso could utter the word in Rogue One, he was never known to follow the rules and had a knack for getting himself into tight situations before escaping or finding success in the end. Sadly, despite Solo’s underdog status, it is never quite able to beat the odds stacked against it.

Courtesy of Right Hand

Top 10 Albums By Gov Ball 2018 Artists

This year, I am proud to say that The Sun will be covering Gov Ball 2018. Check out our list of favorite albums by this year’s performers:

 

1. Khalid — American Teen

Khalid’s debut album American Teen is vibrant and portrays the beauty of youth and hope. On the album, Khalid speaks from the heart about his life. He discusses love and relationships, experimenting with drugs, parents, parties and establishing himself in an uncertain society (all common daily thoughts and experiences of the American teen).

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Love and Lust in a Burning Forest

“There was a cabaret and there was a master of ceremonies and there was a city called Berlin in a country called Germany. It was the end of the world…” So writes Cliff Bradshaw, the starry-eyed American novelist whose search for love and adventure in 1930s Germany frames John Kander and Fred Ebbs’s Cabaret. In the haze of the Kit Kat Klub, a haven for stockings, lipstick, and high-heeled performers, Berlin is in full-view, beautiful in its celebration of self and doomed by the rising political waves that would ultimately engulf Europe. Ithaca College’s production of Cabaret was an astounding success, executed with masterful design, orchestration, choreography and particularly amazing talent. Designed to bring the audience into the nightclub, with red “Ausgang” signs, dim lights and the orchestra dressed as a cabaret band, Clark Theatre brought the tantalizing Kit Kat Girls and Gals as close to the audience as possible.

JONES | I Don’t Even Wanna Talk About It

I really don’t wanna talk about it, and I shouldn’t even really, so I’m barely going to. The last few weeks have been surprising, disorienting and mainly just sad for anybody who has ever admired Kanye West as a musician, artist, public figure and person who doesn’t befriend alt-right figures and espouse their disgusting revisionist histories. The music he has released during this time — while it, as usual, sounds pretty good — has either been a platform for his new, semi-incoherent ideology (“Ye vs. the People”), or a troll so broad that it begs the question of whether he’s taking any of this shit even remotely seriously (“Lift Yourself”). In the end, it doesn’t really matter all that much, at least to me, whether he actually believes what he’s been saying, or whether he just believes that he is continuing a long career of reactive, disruptive speech regardless of its content, or whether it’s all just a huge joke at the expense of everybody except for Donald Trump, Candace Owens and people who believe that 400 years of slavery were a choice.

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COLLINS | What a Long, Strange Trip It’s Been

I’m in the twilight of my days as a columnist for The Sun. I know that, typically, columnists will close out their time with parting words of advice to incoming first-years or graduating seniors. But, although I’ve done that in the past weeks, the fact of the matter is that I don’t have much advice to impart. Or, at least, much advice that you haven’t already heard hundreds of times, and will hear a hundred more times. Go to office hours, try out something new on campus, make sure to wear sunblock on Slope Day, etc.

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Breaking Silence is Not Sharing a Secret: Speaking with and Reading Dr. Rosenna Bakari

It is time to break our silence. After speaking with Rosenna Bakari ’11 and hearing her insights on living as a survivor of sexual assault, it is evident that it is time for women to live openly about their experience with assault and move past the discomfort in order to reframe the conversations we are having about the topic. Much of the rhetoric and literature about violence against women has channeled women’s stories into a feed dominated by conditions that maintain comfortability among audiences. In Rosenna Bakari’s  recently published memoir Too Much Love Is Not Enough, she discusses the relationship between silence and psychological trauma in a way that imbues its audience with her own personal reality in an honest, relatable fashion. Dr. Bakari is a Cornell alumna whose story and dedication to creating a space for survivors is beyond inspirational.

Courtesy of YesFanDon

Interview With Art Garfunkel on His Approach to Performances, Paul Simon and More

Art Garfunkel, a member of the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame, is performing at the Ithaca State Theatre tonight at 8:00p.m. Through his solo work and collaborations with Paul Simon in the famous folk rock duo Simon and Garfunkel, he has earned eight Grammys over the course of his career. Garfunkel is also an author, recently publishing What Is It All But Luminous, a book of poems, memoirs and stories. In advance of his concert, I had the pleasure of talking to Garfunkel about his love for performing, his relationship with Paul Simon and the list of artists he has on his iPod. The Sun: What made you decide to come to Ithaca on this tour? AG: I’m really interested in making a mark with campus kids.