Review Category : Blogs

OK Go’s Tim Nordwind talks optical illusions, new album, upcoming tour

If you’ve been on YouTube anytime in the last decade, you’ve probably experienced the artistic endeavors of alternative rock band OK Go. This Grammy-award winning group is known for their quirky-creative music videos, like the treadmill-choreographed “Here It Goes Again” and the puppy-dominated “White Knuckles”, as well as their innovative dance-inducing alt-rock sound. OK Go recently released their first single “The Writings on the Wall” from their highly-anticipated album, Hungry Ghosts, which is set to drop October 2014. The music video which was released with the song garnered more than one million views within the first day. The band is set to kick off their first tour in three years at Assembly Music Hall in Sacramento on July 15. MUSE spoke with OK Go co-founder and bassist Tim Nordwind about the upcoming tour, Hungry Ghosts and the band’s creative pursuits. MUSE: What kind of sound were you going for with “The Writings on the Wall” and can we expect the same feeling with the rest of the album? Tim: “The... ...

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Plea of insanity denied for Aquelin Talamantes murder case

On June 3, a Yolo County Superior Court Judge rejected the plea of insanity in the case of Davis resident, Aquelin Talamantes, 29, for murdering her 5-year-old daughter Tatianna Garcia, last year. Talamantes was found guilty on May 30, of first degree murder that took place Sept. 25, 2012 when Talamantes drowned her daughter in her bathtub. She later drove her unresponsive daughter in her trunk to the home of a relative in Sacramento. Her daughter was proclaimed deceased at the hospital. According to reports, the defendant had been to several mental health professionals. However, prosecutors further alleged that Talamantes was a manipulative and cold-hearted killer who used the mental health practitioners to her advantage. The sentencing will be July 7. Talamantes will be faced with 25 years to life with parole. — Gabriella Hamlett   ...

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Robb Davis, Rochelle Swanson win city council seats

Robb Davis and Rochelle Swanson won the two open seats on the Davis City Council, beating out the other three candidates, in the General Municipal and Special Elections on June 3. Davis came in first with 4,909 votes and 43.3 percent of the vote. Swanson came in second with 4,123 votes and 36.3 percent of the vote. The remaining three candidates, John Munn, Sheila Allen and Daniel Parrella, came in third, fourth and fifth, respectively.  Also on the June 2014 ballot for Davis voters were two measures, Measure P and O. Measure P passed, repealing the water rates that were set up in May 2013. Those in support said more fair rates can be created, but opponents and city staff said this could cause Davis to fall short of its financial obligations to the Woodland-Davis surface water project. Measure O did passed and will increase the sales tax in the City of Davis by 0.5 percent, raising it from 8 percent to 8.5 percent. The sales tax increase is projected to bring in about... ...

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Candlelight vigil for UCSB victims to be held May 29 at 8 p.m. on Quad

To honor the victims who were killed and injured during a recent rampage in Isla Vista, Calif. near UC Santa Barbara on May 23, there will be a candlelight vigil on the UC Davis campus. The vigil will take place on the Quad at 8 p.m. on May 29. Because of the potential fire hazard, the UC Davis Fire Department has asked that students not bring real candles and lighters to the event, but event organizers encourage community members to bring electronic candles and other electronic forms of light. For more information, please visit the event’s Facebook page: https://www.facebook.com/events/449867888481878/?ref_newsfeed_story_type=regular. —Melissa Dittrich ...

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Senate Resolution #20 fails at senate with 5-5-3 vote

At 2 a.m. on May 9 at Freeborn Hall, ASUCD senate failed to pass Senate Resolution (SR) #20 with a 5-5-3 vote. ASUCD Senators Mariah Watson, Nicholas Sanchez, Robyn Huey, Azka Fayyaz and Shehzad Lokhandwalla voted yes. ASUCD Senators Jonathan Mitchell, Eugenia Chung, Amelia Helland, Katherine Sherman and Artem Senchev voted no. ASUCD Senators Gareth Smythe and Janesh Gupta abstained. The initial vote was 5-5-2. According to ASUCD Court Case 13 Hoskinson v. Bloom, “The ASUCD Vice President shall act as the presiding officer over all Senate meetings, but shall have no voted [sic], unless the Senate be equally divided [(same number of affirmative votes as any combination of negative votes and/or abstentions).].” ASUCD Vice President Maxwell Kappes voted abstain to make the final vote 5-5-3. The UC Davis Divest Twitter account tweeted out that they aim to put the resolution on a ballot. More updates on SR #20 are to follow. — Claire Tan and Paayal Zaveri — Photo by Brian Nguyen   ...

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Divestment bill to go to senate

On April 17, Senate Resolution (SR) #20 was introduced to ASUCD senate. SR #20 urges the UC Regents to divest from companies assisting in the Israeli occupation of Palestine and illegal settlements in Palestinian territories, which violate international human rights. In particular, the bill specifies divesting from Caterpillar Inc., G4S PLC and Veolia Environment due to their active involvement in violating human rights. The entire resolution can be read here. SR #20 was seen by the Ethnic & Cultural Affairs Commission on April 28 at 6:30 p.m. in Hunt 100. The resolution passed the commission with a 5-4 vote. On April 29, the resolution was seen by the External Affairs Commission at 6:10 p.m. in Wellman 26. It failed with a 2-4-3 vote. The Business & Finance Commission voted to allot only two hours to public discussion. The commission reviewed the bill on May 6 at 8:10 p.m. in Giedt 1001; the resolution passed with a 4-3-2 vote. Since SR #20 passed with a majority vote by the commissions, it... ...

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Mac DeMarco’s “Salad Days” review

The first time I heard the name Mac DeMarco, I was listening to a friend rave about the Canadian musician’s show at Scala in London, last October. DeMarco’s wild enthusiasm and insane genius led to his losing shoes and screaming comedy covers on stage. Previously recording as Makeout Videotape, Salad Days is Mac DeMarco’s second full-length solo album under his own name. The album was released on April 1, 2014 through Captured Tracks and garnered a “Best New Music” accolade from Pitchfork. DeMarco plays and records all the instruments himself in his box room in Brooklyn. DeMarco’s cut and paste style gives him an irreverent appeal. It’s nice to see an artist who isn’t precious about imperfections in his process. DeMarco is the gap-toothed, laid back voice of reason we all need. The title track, “Salad Days,” allows DeMarco to acknowledge his youth from the off. The message lies somewhere between a love ballad and telling everyone to chill out. It’s hard to escape the fluid rhythm and guitar flicks... ...

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Review of Diana Krall’s Mondavi performance

I’m that obnoxious girl that knows every hit single on the radio, has contemplated life to every song by every obscure indie band too mainstream for Coachella and listens to Mozart while doing her homework. Though this is all true, my heart first and foremost belongs to jazz, which is why I am so grateful I got to attend Diana Krall’s performance at the Mondavi Center this past Sunday. Diana Krall is one of today’s most popular traditional jazz vocalists and pianists — a modern-day tribute to the likes of the brilliant Ella Fitzgerald and Billie Holiday. Her current tour features covers from her new album Glad Rag Doll as well as old favorites from past collections. Krall opened her dynamic set with a sassy arrangement of “When the Curtain Comes Down” from her newest project. The song was accompanied by a video of actor Steve Buscemi providing old-timey theatrical asides and dance, setting the show up for a whirlwind of nostalgic repertoire. Krall was accompanied by a jazz combo... ...

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Review of The Wind Rises

Studio Ghibli’s most recent animated production, The Wind Rises, is now showing at Regal Cinemas on G Street in downtown Davis. The film is Japanese filmmaker Hayao Miyazaki’s final movie of his career and is perhaps one of his best pieces yet. Miyazaki, writer and director of the Academy Award-winning film Spirited Away, has brought forth themes of love, growing up, feminism, good vs. evil, environmentalism, flight and reality vs. fantasy over the years in all of his movies and The Wind Rises is no exception. The Wind Rises imagines the life of Jiro Horikoshi, a real life aeronautical engineer from the 1950s who designed aircrafts used by the Japanese army in WWII. The film, though based on historical events, is whimsical in quality and invites the viewer into a highly aesthetically appealing experience. The film beautifully intertwines the ideas of flight and love into one in the same for young Horikoshi. It explores the difference between Horikoshi’s ambitions to create beautiful aircrafts and the reality of how his designs... ...

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The Mondavi Center hosts Circa’s “S”

On March 30, The Mondavi Center will host the Australian circus group Circa. Circa will be performing their show “S,” a captivating and raw example of the modern circus. Drawing inspiration from the smooth contours and constantly changing directions of the letter “s,” the cast will explore their physical and emotional limits with organic and powerful acrobatics. The performance is influenced by the simplicity of the letter “S.” With no numbers, acts, props or even elaborate costumes, the ensemble is said to be able to capture a sense of purity and vulnerability with their movement. As a result, Circa’s acrobatics engage the audience’s emotions. According to Yaron Lifschitz, the CEO and Artistic Director of Circa, “S” is a different piece from what he has done in the past. Lifschitz said he was excited about “S” being regarded as something beyond explanation but still moving. “It [“S”] is a place where the body and the artist become a resonant, poetic, theatrical, medium that generates an authentic human connection between the performers... ...

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Judge rules Marsh’s confession as valid, trial to begin April 14

On Friday Feb. 28, a Yolo County Superior Court Judge ruled that Daniel Marsh, the suspected killer of elderly Davis couple Oliver Northup and Claudia Maupin, will go on trial on April 14, the one-year anniversary of the double homicide. Additionally, the judge ruled that Marsh’s alleged confession of the crime to the Davis Police will be used among the evidence presented to the jury. According to the Davis Enterprise, Judge David Reed’s decision came after a closed viewing of Marsh’s recorded interview with the police and an hour long hearing on Feb. 28. “The video of the interview does not support a conclusion that the defendant’s statement was coerced,” Reed said in his ruling. “Under the totality of the circumstances, the defendant’s statements were voluntary and uncoerced, and with knowledge of his right to remain silent.” Marsh is charged with two counts of first-degree murder, along with the special-circumstance allegations and is being tried as an adult. Marsh has pleaded not guilty to the charges and is currently in custody at... ...

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Marsh double homicide trial hearing on Feb. 28

A Yolo County Superior Court Judge is set to rule as to whether Daniel Marsh’s alleged confession of the April 14, 2013 murders of an elderly Davis couple, Oliver Northup and Claudia Maupin, should be part of the upcoming trial process. The motion to suppress the alleged confession was filed by deputy public defenders Ron Johnson and Andrea Pelochino on Feb. 6. They claim that Marsh was taken to the Davis Police Station under false pretenses before being questioned by Davis Police Detective Ariel Pineda and FBI Agent Chris Campion about the murders. Yolo County prosecutors say this bid to get rid of the alleged admission should be denied because law enforcement officers did not use false pretenses or coercion to elicit the confession, according to the Davis Enterprise. “(T)he defendant decided to confess because he believed it was pointless to resist in light of all the evidence against him, not because of any promises of leniency,” said Assistant Chief Deputy District Attorney, Michael Cabral in an opposition motion. Marsh was arrested on June 17 and is charged with two counts of first-degree murder, along... ...

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ASUCD announces results for Winter 2014 Elections

At 12:30 p.m. on Feb. 21, Eric Renslo, ASUCD Elections Committee Chair, announced the results of ASUCD’s Winter 2014 Elections in Wellman 6. Measure 1, also known as the “Save the Aggie” measure, passed with 72.92 percent  voter approval. The measure received 27.11 percent voter turnout, exceeding the 20 percent needed for the fee referendum to be considered valid. Renslo then announced the results for the ASUCD senate elections. In order one to six, senate candidates Azka Fayyaz (S.M.A.R.T.), Robyn Huey (S.M.A.R.T.), Nicholas Sanchez (S.M.A.R.T.), Amelia Helland (NOW), Artem Senchev (Independent) and Eugenia Chung (NOW) were elected to the senate table. Next, Renslo presented the results for the presidential election. Armando Figueroa (S.M.A.R.T.) and Maxwell Kappes (Independent) were elected ASUCD president and vice president, respectively. For more information, go to elections.ucdavis.edu.   — Scott Dresser   ...

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Sun Kil Moon’s ‘Benji’ Album Review

In the opening track of Sun Kil Moon’s Benji, singer-songwriter Mark Kozelek makes it clear that he is confused and intrigued about — yet ultimately fixated upon — death. Describing the titular “Carissa,” Kozelek explains the “senseless tragedy” of her death (an aerosol can explosion, just like the way his uncle died, nonetheless). His paced revelations of his second cousin Carissa conclude with his homecoming to Ohio and decision to honor Carissa by making “sure her name is known across every city.” In this statement, a reflective, often introspective journey into the life of Mark Kozelek begins, and in the undeniably powerful directness of Benji, Kozelek’s sense of gratitude for all those who have formed him triumphs over the morbid subject matter. The sixth album of Sun Kil Moon, Kozelek, now the only current member of the project, recruited the likes of Sonic Youth’s Steve Shelley, Owen Ashworth, Will Oldham and Jen Wood to heighten the universality of the album’s deeply personal songs. This technique is apparent in the second... ...

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Stories on Stage presents author Anthony Marra

Guess what crazy thing I did Saturday night? I went to a book reading at the Pence Gallery! I know, pretty badass, am I right? Okay, so maybe it wasn’t the ideal “wild Saturday night out,” but it was actually quite enjoyable. Every month the Pence Gallery on D Street hosts “Stories on Stage.” During the event local actors read aloud excerpts from books or short works by a successful author and a promising young writer. I dragged a few friends with me to the show to find there was only standing room in the excessively small gallery area and that everyone seemed to be perspiring. Pence Gallery was set to showcase New York Times Bestseller Anthony Marra, so everyone and their mothers were in attendance. The show started with a reading from Maria Kuznetsova’s (a rising author) story “The Foreigner.” Actress Gia Battista, artistic director of the Davis Shakespeare Ensemble, read an excerpt from the book about a young Russian girl attempting to live normally during wartime. Kuznetsova’s written... ...

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