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Song Exploder


When podcasters transition to television, the results can be magical. This is the case for Song Exploder, the new Netflix series from Hrishikesh Hirway, who initially launched a popular podcast of the same name in 2014. In both formats, Hirway creates a narrative around the inception of important pieces of music, but his work—and that of his subjects—shines brightest on the screen. An incisive and thoughtful interviewer, he reveals a nuanced understanding of the creative processes of a wide range of talents, from Michael Stipe and Alicia Keys to Lin-Manuel Miranda and Ty Dolla Sign. Illuminating both the granular and meta moments in production, he also reminds us that music should not be relegated to the backgrounds of contemporary life—a little undivided attention goes a long way. (netflix.com) —Ashley Baker

Purée

Immersion Blender


Soup season is upon us, and I’ve never been so grateful for my immersion blender. It’s good for almost everything—from puréeing pesto to grinding spices—but I use it most in the winter, when it spares me from cracking open a can of Campbell’s (though I do have a soft spot for their chicken noodle). Though there are more elaborate versions on the market, I have no complaints about my simple, two-speed KitchenAid—it’s a great gift for new home cooks and should be a staple in any kitchen. ($40, kitchenaid.com) —Clementine Ford

Peep

Northern Vernacular


As a New Englander by birth, it’s easy for me to take the region’s architecture for granted—when I discovered Frank Lloyd Wright in my teens, I thought I had stumbled into capital-A architecture for the first time. But as the news is increasingly postmodern, it’s nice to retreat to a building with familiar gables. That’s where the Instagram account Northern Vernacular comes in as a visual balm. Focused on the architectural heritage of Maine, it’s the quaintest time you can have without actually leaving your house. (instagram.com) —Daisy Alioto

Celebrate

Four Seasons Fiasco


Biden’s Saturday victory deserves commemoration. Especially with an homage to Four Seasons Total Landscaping, the site of a “big press conference” that Trump had announced via Twitter that morning. He said it would be held at the Four Seasons in Philadelphia, but this was soon followed with a clarification: not the hotel but a landscaping firm of a similar name. The media soon descended on a suburban business park where Rudy Giuliani, moments after the election had been called, claimed voter fraud. Or so I’ve heard. I was busy admiring the groundskeeping operation’s prime location, between a crematorium and a sex shop. A crematorium and a sex shop. Does it get any better? An error of some kind was clearly made—no one quite knows the how or the why—but to some it seems a perfect end to Trump’s presidency. So buy the damn T-shirt—sure to bring a smile to the face of all who encounter it. ($25, fstl1992.com) —Ashley Baker

Issue No. 70
November 14, 2020
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Issue No. 70
November 14, 2020
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