Last updateWed, 12 Feb 2020 1pm


Eilish Stuns in Debut

Eilish Stuns DebutAmerican pop singer Billie Eilish, released her debut full-length record When We All Fall Asleep, Where Do We Go? on March 29.

Eilish hits a memorable home run with her new record, with singles such as “bury a friend” charting as high as No. 14 on the Billboard Hot 100.

The record opens with the 12-second track “!!!!!!!” which simply features Eilish cheekily joking about her retainer, before verbally introducing the album whilst she and her older brother and producer/co-writer Finneas O’Connell burst into laughter.

The first song, “bad guy,” begins with a ferocious bass line that will surely command movement on the dancefloors of clubs everywhere.

Bass seems to be a major staple on this record, with most of the songs being driven by a catchy bass guitar or a bass-boosted drum beat.

Anyone who enjoys listening to music on their daily commute will certainly notice their rearview mirror vibrating along to the bass frequency during the chorus of “xanny.”

Songs such as “8” and closing track “goodbye” take some different instrumental approaches; “8” features Eilish singing softly while strumming a ukulele, while “goodbye” features a cascade of vocal harmony, with Eilish at the helm. “goodbye” would certainly prompt some acapella covers popping up online.

The 17-year-old singer addresses a small variety of issues on When We All Fall Asleep.

Songs such as “xanny” touches on the issue of prescription medication abuse amongst young people.

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Jepsen is Dedicated

Jepsen DedicatedLovers of pop music and Jepsies rejoice!

The Queen of Pop, Carly Rae Jepsen, announced last Monday that she will release her new album called Dedicated on May 17.

Along with the news, CRJ announced a tour across America planned for this summer.

The tour will start on June 27 in Anaheim and will end on Aug. 1 in Dallas.

The Queen will make local stops along the way, including the Hammerstein Ballroom in New York City on July 17 and The Fillmore in Philadelphia on July 20.

Thus far, CRJ has released three singles from Dedicated. Five months ago, CRJ teased everyone with “Party for One.”

Initially, the track seemed typical of the Queen, as she belted out about how she doesn’t need a man to be herself.

However, as the five months have passed, the song has grown on me.

It’s turned out to be the perfect bop for when I down a jug of ice cream in my room (which I never do).

Along with “Party for One,” CRJ released “No Drug Like Me” and “Now That I’ve Found You.”

Both songs are certified bops, with “No Drug Like Me” as a sexy slow burn and “Now That I’ve Found You” as an explosive track about love.

“Now That I’ve Found You” even got the music video treatment, where CRJ falls in love with a cat.

Plenty of other artists fall in love with fame, but all the Queen needs is her cat.

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Ready, Set, Film!

The FilmOneFest is Coming to Monmouth

Ready Set Film 1A prop, location, and line of dialogue is all filmmakers will be given to use their creativity to make a short film in FilmOneFest’s upcoming film competition right here on campus.

FilmOneFest will continue its collaboration with the University for the second year in a row with their Fourth Annual Film Slam competition on Friday, April 5 through Saturday, April 6.

The event will begin at 7:30 p.m. and teams competing will be given a film assignment and only 24 hours to create a film shorter than two minutes long.

FilmOneFest is a project of the Atlantic Highlands Arts Council and aims to strengthen the community through the arts.

The Film Slam is a free 24-hour filmmaking competition in which teams compete to create an original film that includes specific criteria assigned to them.

At the start of the competition, teams will be assigned a specific prop, location, and line of dialogue that they must incorporate in their short film.

For example, last year a total of seven teams participated and the criteria given was a bird as the prop, a cemetery as the location, and “how about this weather” as the line of dialogue.

After given the three assigned categories, teams must deliver their final product back to Woods Theatre by Saturday night, exactly 24 hours after getting their assignment.

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God at the Box Office: The Relationship Between Faith and Film

Faith and FilmWhen you think of successful modern films, what are some names that come to mind?

Anything commended by the Academy may pop up, or any recent Marvel or DC blockbusters that have graced the silver screen (Marvel’s Captain Marvel grossed nearly $825.1 million in revenue as of March).

Maybe, some mind-bending independent films make the list, like the smash-hit psychological horror Hereditary from last year.

Now, have you ever heard of God’s Not Dead or its sequel? Unbroken: Path to Redemption? How about Indivisible?

The above names are of Christian films that have been released in the past five years.

If you have heard of the listed films or any like them, their reception, both critically and otherwise, can seem inconsistent.

The original God’s Not Dead from 2014 received a measly 13 percent on Rotten Tomatoes, but a 4.5/5 from the average Facebook’s review.

Last year’s Unbroken: Path to Redemption, received a 36 percent on Rotten Tomatoes, but 91 percent from the average votes of Google users.

Christian films have not been nominated for major film awards recently, and it has been a long time since any were publicly praised.

Films like 1959’s Ben Hur, 1966’s A Man for All Seasons, and 2004’s The Passion of The Christ can be considered some of the last blockbusters of their kind.

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Leaving Neverland And the Legacy of Michael Jackson

Leaving NeverlandA few weeks ago, HBO released a two-part documentary titled Leaving Neverland; a documentary that explored pop mega star Michael Jackson’s relationship and alleged sexual abuse with two young boys.

Now in their thirties, the boys, Wade Robson and James Safechuck, stepped forward in the documentary and revealed chilling details of their experience with Jackson.

One scene includes Safechuck as he recalled all the places at the Neverland Ranch where Jackson engaged in sexual acts with him as a boy. In every possible place you could think of; from the movie theater to the train station, Jackson pressured Safechuck to perform a sexual act.

It’s a brutal examination of Jackson, revealing new information about his past, leaving the audience to process how he is perceived in the present.

It’s quite difficult to explain just how popular Michael Jackson was.

As someone who wasn’t alive during his peak years, it’s still astonishing to see his widespread appeal and the immense popularity of Jackson’s music.

The moonwalk is synonymous with Jackson. Thriller is regarded by some as the greatest album of all time. He was and is pop music.

So when deplorable information comes to the forefront about someone that was admired by so many people, it’s difficult to process the collective thought on the subject in question.

The HBO documentary does a remarkable job of handling such sensitive memories, that it’s quite difficult to watch.

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Nostalgia and the Co-Headliner: An Inquiry into Touring Collaborations

Nostalgia Co Headliner 1There’s something particular about the 1990s that seems to resonate with the general public.

It’s an intangible something that courses through everyone that has any semblances or memory of the back end of the 20th century.

The aesthetic of the 90’s, where everyone wore denim and pastel colors, listening to ska music on their portable cassette players, is something we long for and continue to grasp onto in the current culture.

Not in the literal sense; I don’t think anyone has seen a portable cassette player in years, but you can get that feeling when you see major artists from that era pop up on tour, co-headlined by a fellow “90’s kid” act.

The more prominent examples of these co-headlining tours are Weezer with the Pixies, TLC with Boyz II Men, and The Smashing Pumpkins with Noel Gallagher’s High Flying Birds.

All of these groups were huge at one point in the 1990’s with the exception of Gallagher’s band, but he still has some pull from his Oasis days.

On paper, the idea of having two acts play the same show seems like a great idea; two for the price of one.

These bands also match up sound and audience wise, so there should be some fan crossover between the two.

It’s not as if the shows are being billed as Slayer with special guest Cher, despite how interesting that pairing would be.

“I think for older musicians and bands it could be beneficial to co-headline a tour for the simple fact that their fan bases have matured and are financially conscious,” said sophomore Andres Camacho, the future music director for WMCX.

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HGTV is Everyone's Home For Entertainment

HGTV Everyones Home 1Ever wondered what the appeal of home renovation shows is?

There is such a variety of home shows out there and there’s even a whole network dedicated to them.

Founded in 1994, HGTV was originally called the Home, Lawn and Garden Channel. Fast forward to 2010, and the channel was called Home and Garden TV, or HGTV.

In 2016, the only cable channels that had more viewers than HGTV were Fox News and ESPN, making it the third most-watched.

But, what makes these shows so popular? What draws people into the lives of seemingly random people on TV who are buying or renovating a home?

Of course, these shows are for entertainment.

That’s the purpose of all reality TV and any form of media in general.

Robert Scott, a specialist professor of communication, referenced the length of the shows stating, “Producers would not be able to fit every aspect of purchasing a home into a 30- or 60-minute television program. I suspect too much detail would be challenging to edit and would significantly affect pacing so that the end result would be less entertaining.”

Christopher Otteau, MAI, an adjunct real estate professor and CEO of 3P Equity Capital, also acknowledged irrational parts of the programs.

Otteau said, “One of the unrealistic aspects is when [the hosts] assume [that] because you purchase a house for example $50,000 less, the buyer then has that much more construction funds.  That would only be the case if it were a cash deal.”

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Rewind the Tape: The Unlikely Cassette Comeback

Rewind Tapes 1Get out your winding pen and cassette player, because tapes are making a big come-back with modern musical artists and audiences.

The question is: why now, and why the sudden return of the vintage tape-recording device?

Also known as a compact audio cassette or musicassette, a cassette tape is an analog magnetic tape-recording format for audio capture and playback.

Developed in 1962 Belgium by Dutch technology company Philips, cassette tapes defined music listening habits of the 70’s and 80’s as an easy, portable change from the bulkiness of records and the unpredictability of radio.

Players like the Sony’s 1979 Walkman, stereo tape decks, and boom-boxes made selecting tracks for parties, leisure, or on-the-go listening even more popular.

The physical appearances of the cassette tape (with it’s compact, boxed shape and two holes), as well as that of the boom-box, became distinct marks of their eras in time: gold-chained hip-hoppers carrying big stereos on their shoulders and neon-sweatband-clad joggers with cassettes loaded into their Walkmen.

Now, who exactly brought back this taste of vintage life by resurrecting the cassette tape in the 2010s?

Well, pop princess Taylor Swift did, with her Grammy-award-winning album appropriately titled 1989 from 2014.

So did diva Ariana Grande, with her 2018 comeback Sweetener, which also nabbed a good deal of Grammy wins. Musical icon Björk is set to release all nine of her albums on multicolor cassette tapes for April 2019, joining the likes of Justin Bieber, NWA, She & Him, Weezer, and more.

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With Sails Ahead Discuss What’s Ahead

Sails AheadBrick Township progressive rockers With Sails Ahead, founded by vocalist Sierra Binondo in 2013, released a new music video for their song “Pixelated” on March 8.

The song hails from their latest record, Morning Sun, which was released the previous year.

On “Pixelated,” vocalist Sierra Binondo cheekily calls out fake friendship and insincerity within the local music scene.

The video, directed by Kris Khunachak, comically recounts some of the craziest things the band has encountered throughout their career.

The new video can be viewed on the band’s YouTube channel.

Morning Sun opens with the track “Disappear,” which features a dazzling cascade of amazing guitar work on behalf of guitarists Josef Warner-Reyes and Santino Costa; both of whom bring amazing solos and performances on tracks such as “Willow” and “Always Clouded, Never Clear.”

On “Disappear,” bassist Jaime Martinez dabbles with the cello during the bridge, creating a sound that is full and unique.

Drummer Ryan Venancio gives an infectious performance on the record, skillfully incorporating heavy punk and dance-pop drumming on tracks such as “Synapse Fires.”

“A lot of the lyrics on the record comment on how other people’s attitudes affect others, or (the lyrics) deflect fault onto others,” said Binondo when asked about the record’s lyrical content.

The title Morning Sun is symbolic for a brighter tomorrow, even in spite of past mistakes, according to the singer.

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Enter Shikari Enters Russia

Shikari RussiaBritish electro-rock giants Enter Shikari made their Russian late-night television debut on Evening Urgant on March 20.

The four-piece from Hertfordshire gave an explosive performance of their single “Live Outside,” from their latest album The Spark.

Host Ivan Urgant promotes their 2019 Stop The Clocks Russian tour, which ended on March 20 at the Heart Bar in Irkutsk.

The tour stopped in cities such as Moscow, St. Petersburg, Krasnodar, and more.

Vocalist Roughton Reynolds delivered an electric performance, belting each note with passion and effortlessly two-stepping to the beat of the song.

Enter Shikari was founded in 1999 under the name “Hybryd.”

It  was not until 2003, with the addition of guitarist Liam Clewlow, that the band changed its name to Enter Shikari; the band name was inspired by a boat owned by Reynold’s uncle.

The band released their debut album, Take to the Skies, in the spring of 2007.

The album reached number 4 in the UK in less than a week following its release.

The band has been known to write about political issues of varying natures.

This includes climate change, our misuse of natural resources, the Trump Presidency, capitalism, and the United Kingdom’s Trident nuclear program.

When questioned about the band’s political voice, Reynolds told Kerrang! Magazine: “It’s what music is for.

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Steel Magnolias Steals the Show at Monmouth

Steel Magnolias 1Highlighting the interconnected lives of southern women as ‘as delicate as magnolias but as tough as steel,’ the University’s Department of Music and Theatre proudly presents Robert Harling’s touching 1987 dramatic comedy, Steel Magnolias, directed by Dr. John Burke.

Using the intimate Lauren K. Woods Theatre as its setting, this production of Steel Magnolias is deeply emotional, with an eye-catching set and a cast of intensely dedicated players.

According to the official University page for the 2019 spring production, Steel Magnolias “follows six Louisiana women as they gather in their small-town beauty parlor to gossip, complain, and share the joys and sorrows they face in their lives. Despite differences in age, backgrounds, and attitudes, their camaraderie and sense of humor help them grow through both good and bad times.”

The show opens on the preparations of the wedding of Shelby Eatenton-Latcherie, played by London Jones in the fictional northwestern Louisiana parish of Chinquapin.

Shelby is the daughter of driven career-woman M’Lynn Eatenton, played by Samantha Truglio, and her wedding is occurring later in the day.

They visit successful business owner Truvy Jones’, portrayed by Erin Clemente, in-home beauty parlor, which becomes the regular meeting spot for the subsequent cast of characters.

The play covers the span of occurrences over the next three years with Shelby’s Type 1 diabetes.

Highlighted are Shelby’s controversial decision regarding having a child, Clairee Belcher and her friendship with the ‘curmudgeon’ Ouiser Boudreaux, the personal and spiritual transformation of Annelle Dupuy-Desoto, and Truvy’s overarching relationships with men in her family.

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Contact Information

The Outlook
Jules L. Plangere Jr. Center for Communication
and Instructional Technology (CCIT)
Room 260, 2nd floor

The Outlook
Monmouth University
400 Cedar Ave, West Long Branch, New Jersey

Phone: (732) 571-3481 | Fax: (732) 263-5151
Email: outlook@monmouth.edu