Sleepy genius

PGcover

Mike Hadreas — aka Perfume Genius — has grown into an ethereal messenger since 2010’s Learning. Touching on themes that can apply to anyone, Hadreas is both a beacon of hope and a teller of dreamy tales on his new CD, Put Your Back N 2 It (Matador Records).

Hadreas starts the album on a sleepy, languid path with “AWOL Marine” and stays consistent throughout the 12 tracks. This can be a turn-off for someone looking for a more spirited album, but Hadreas is about depth and his lyrics reveal a major advance since Learning.

Finding inspiration from homemade basement porn never sounded so exquisite as it does in “Marine,” but the minimalist approach adds gravitas, not to mention beauty. He adds stunning emotions to “Take Me Home” (based on “hookerism”) and “Floating Spit” (about overdosing). Hadreas is fearless about turning out butterflies from such depths of social standards.

On “17,” Hadreas writes an ode to gay men who have issues with image. He admits the song is a “gay suicide letter” (and a short one, too, at 2:30) but it’s a shattering one. He doesn’t shy from abstract lyrics but they still bring enough poetic power to have a heartbreaking impact. When he quietly sings In the body of a violin/String it up on a fence/Cover it with semen/I am done, I am done with it, the words are piercing even through his simple delivery.

From suicide to romance, the title track is a love song that floats on a lush piano and brings to light the feelings of budding love and awkward gay sex. Hadreas is gloriously blatant, but decidely poignant. Lyrics like There is love with no hiding/Nothing you’ll show me I will never leave here/Let me be the one to turn you on whisper gently and before you know it, it’s already on your mixtape to your beau.

Put Your Back N 2 It is impressionistic in its package and addresses life as a gay man, but also life in general. He sings about his mother, holding his boyfriend’s hand and even death, all with a delicacy that speaks volumes if you listen closely.

— Rich Lopez

Three and half stars.

This article appeared in the Dallas Voice print edition February 24, 2012.

—  Kevin Thomas

RIP Geraldine Doyle, the inspiration for Rosie the Riveter

Via the Lansing State Journal:

Geraldine Doyle of Lansing, whose face became the inspiration behind the iconic World War II image of “Rosie the Riveter,” has died, according to her family. A memorial service is planned for 4 p.m., Jan. 8 at Tiffany Funeral Home, 3232 W. Saginaw St.

” ‘Rosie the Riveter’ is the image of an independent woman who is control of her own destiny,” said Gladys Beckwith, former director of the Michigan Women’s Historical Center and Hall of Fame. “She was a gracious, beautiful woman. Her death is the end of an era, and we need to take note of that. We need to respect what she stood for.”

Doyle was 86.

Pam’s House Blend – Front Page

—  admin

Tom Sime’s ‘Bloodletters’ staged reading at Pocket

Staged reading delivers horrors and laughs

Blood is thicker than water in more ways than one in Bloodletters. Former DMN critic turned playwright Tom Sime combines horror and comedy when suspense author Grace brings her inspiration too close to home. With her dysfunctional family as inspiration, her story begins to parallel that of those closest to her — and that’s not good. But is it coincidence or is she making it happen?

A staged reading won’t make it any less scary. Or fun.

DEETS: Pocket Sandwich Theatre, 5400 E. Mockingbird Lane, Suite 119. 7:15 p.m. Free. RSVP to LoneStarStudios@yahoo.com.

—  Rich Lopez