Elevate Difference

Reviews by Elen P. Farkas


If there’s one word to describe the works of Nouvelle Vague, it's génial. Generally, I don’t trust cover versions. Many of them are an abomination that spits all over the originals, but somehow, the cover band Nouvelle Vague makes me forget that.


It is hard to imagine Robin Guthrie’s music without the accompanying voice of his former better half, Elizabeth Fraser. Her vocal styling, a combination of mouth music and abstract lyrics, became a trademark of the Cocteau Twins and left a distinctive quality that remains even if she works with other musicians.

Twentieth Century Chemical

Those Bastard Souls is the side project of The Grifters’ David Shouse. The album Twentieth Century Chemical is a reissue; it was first released in 1996. To be honest, I haven’t heard of Shouse’s main gig. I don’t know anything about his other band either.

Dude Manor

Dude Manor is the first-ever record that reminds me of my age, and tells me that I am no longer in my twenties. Listening to the EP is like hearing dozens of bands you’ve heard before. This sort of familiarity, however, brings you closer to the EP. If Living With Lions is aware of this then it is a marketing strategy that could make or break the group’s career. Opening with an intro that lasts for fifty seconds, this is a premonition of things to come.

Be Strong and Curvaceous

It is not easy to like Be Strong & Curvaceous, especially if you are not a Christian and die-hard fashionista. In this novel, believing in a Christian god is as usual as fancying the latest Chanel dress or a pair of Christian Louboutin shoes. Don’t let the title fool you either.

Queer Optimism: Lyric Personhood and Other Felicitous Persuasions

“The year I told my parents I was gay was also the year of my first encounter with depression,” writes Michael Snediker in the opening line of his detailed introduction. This line struck a nerve as I know a few people who, personally, are still on the same boat. I have seen an aunt and an uncle, a lesbian and gay respectively, ostracized by the conservative, über-religious society they live in.

Under the Cherry Tree, Japanese Dolls from the Collection of Hatsuko Ohno (11/5/2008 - 2/22/2009)

For the first time a number of Japanese traditional dolls from the collection of Hatsuko Ohno (1915-1982), a renowned doll maker, are touring Vienna, Austria in the exhibit Unter dem Kirschbaum, Japanische Puppen aus der Sammlung Hatsuko Ohno (Under the Cherry Tree, Japanese Dolls from the Collection of Hatsuko Ohno). Her dolls have spent some time in Poland, Hungary, and Italy. Call it an exhibit within an exhibit.