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Pop Picks: The Hottest Trends From The Pop-O-Sphere

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ARTIST OF THE WEEK: Flying Lotus – (new album “You’re Dead!”)

Every two years we’re going to be treated to a Flying Lotus album that changes the way we look at instrumental music. “You’re Dead!” finds Flying Lotus fully embracing the hip-hop rooted IDM sound and giving his take on what a jazz fusion album should sound like in 2014. Close attention is rewarded with full experience. It’s hard telling where he’ll go next, but as his track record indicates, Lotus will build off his past experiences and flip everything on its head. “You’re Dead!” is arguably his most imposing album thus far. — Logan Smithson

LISTEN: Doug Seegers – “Going Down to the River” (CD)

Doug Seegers doesn’t just sing about the hobo life; he has lived it for four decades, squatting in abandoned buildings in Manhattan, sleeping under bridges in Austin and Nashville, hopping trains to another town where the promise of pocket change dropped into his guitar case might be better. Seegers harkens back to the classic country of old while establishing his own voice and vision. In “Going Down to the River”, Seegers howls and mimics a train whistle, evoking the blue yodels of Jimmie Rodgers. One can hear echoes of Porter Wagoner in “Pour Me”, where the singer sits forlornly at the bar while his ex sways across the dance floor with her new beau, This is smart songwriting, and this is one of the best country releases you will hear this year. — Ed Whitelock

WATCH: “Two Faces of January” (TV Show)

Patricia Highsmith’s work captures key moments in the social history of America. Writer and first-time director Hossein Amin, along with talented cinematographer Marcel Syskind, capture this and more in their elegant adaptation of Highsmith’s 1964 novel, “The Two Faces of January.” Much of the pleasure in the story emerges from the restrained, expressive cinematography of Danish-born director of photography, Marcel Syskind. From the classical creams and taupes of the opening scenes in the Parthenon and Athens through the sunburned, shadeless interior of Crete to the hyper-stylized blues and bronzes of nighttime Istanbul, Syskind’s palette melds with emotional states. — Lesley Smith

READ: “How We Got to Now,” by Steven Johnson

This is a fascinating study that connects technology with art, history, culture, and psychology. After all, technology, like most things, doesn’t exist in some type of bubble. Soap, candles, even the humble ice cube all make appearances. This a fun read, because the man whom President Clinton calls “a great science writer” doesn’t just know science, he knows how to write about it in an engaging literary fashion. – Catherine Ramsdell

PLAY: “BlindSide”

In this iOS audio horror game, you and your girlfriend have suddenly been struck blind. You navigate though this sudden darkness using the sounds of your environment, like the humming of a fridge or the whooshing of a fan. And then, of course, there are the monsters you must avoid. “BlindSide” puts us in a new situation that’s naturally uncomfortable. Even if its tone were relentlessly upbeat, it would still be frightening simply because it’s so unusual. “BlindSide” isn’t the scariest game of its kind, but it is by far the most unique. — Nick Dinicola

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PopMatters is an international magazine of arts and culture. Find more PopMatters content at PopMatters.com.

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©2014, PopMatters.com

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Pop Picks: The Hottest Trends From The Pop-O-Sphere