Stormfields

Keep the Faith: Marillion’s “Afraid of Sunlight” at 25 ~ The Imaginative Conservative

Each of these four tracks builds in soulful intensity and bardic purpose until Mr. Hogarth is begging us to answer, “how do we now come to be afraid of sunlight”? It is a plea for a recognition of the human condition, in all of its majesty and tragedy.
— Read on theimaginativeconservative.org/2020/04/keep-faith-marillion-bradley-birzer.html

The Founders’ Moral Mind Was Revolutionary, and Free | The American Conservative

Thompson sees his own work as a fulfillment and filling out of the work of his beloved mentors, Bailyn and Wood. As such, Thompson’s book is, properly and justly, filled with attempts to understand free will. Where Bailyn and Wood gave too much credence to the power of ideas (again, as somewhat determinisms and deterministic), Thompson wrestles with the much more difficult problem of individual free will. After all, imagine a world in which every single person—past, present, and future—is a moral agent. The world gets very, very complicated, very, very quickly
— Read on www.theamericanconservative.com/articles/bradley-thompson-birzer-america-revolutionary-mind-founders/

John Marshall: A Primer ~ The Imaginative Conservative

Perhaps more than any other figure in the early history of the American Republic, Marshall shaped the Supreme Court as well as attitudes toward and understandings of the U.S. Constitution. While many of the cases over which Marshall presided are important to a constitutional understanding of America, five in particular stand out. The first, Marbury v. Madison, 1803, established the power of the Supreme Court to Judicial Review, which served as a defense of the judiciary against the other two branches of government. In the twentieth century, the Supreme Court reinterpreted Marshall’s advocacy of Judicial Review to mean judicial supremacy, but such an interpretation was never Marshall’s intent. Marshall only desired for the third branch of the federal government to be equal to the first two.
— Read on theimaginativeconservative.org/2020/03/john-marshall-primer-bradley-birzer.html

What if This Is the End? ~ The Imaginative Conservative

What if Chesterton was right, perhaps in some kind of Blakean fit of ecstasy? Maybe all of our worrying about The End is for naught. Perhaps it did happen long ago, and we live somewhere in the final days. The Apostles certainly believed the End of the Age was near to them, and the New Testament confirms and affirms this repeatedly.

Of course, I am only being half serious. Still, look at the news. The Coronavirus might as well be the Black Death. As I type this, the governor of Michigan has declared (unconstitutionally, it should be noted) a “stay at home”/lockdown order. Walking the dog (named, by coincidence?, Chesterton) this afternoon, my hometown of Hillsdale, Michigan, might very well have served as the set of some Twilight Zone episode, so quiet and abandoned does it seem. (This might be the ideal time to become close friends with a Mormon.) And, of course, this is just one view. China and Italy have already gone through hell, or continue to exist in it. With this viral threat, half of the world seems to have lost its collective mind.

Well, for the sake of argument, let’s say this is The End. It wasn’t nuclear war or an asteroid or a rogue planet or even some mystical force. But, merely—in a whimper—a damned bug. Would it really matter?
— Read on theimaginativeconservative.org/2020/03/what-if-this-is-the-end-bradley-birzer.html

The solution to ‘cancel culture’ is true community | Acton Institute

Prior to this, I had prided myself on writing seven-, eight-, or even nine-page handwritten letters. My family and friends had filled our letters with news, with details of great adventures, with reviews of the latest books we had read and music we had heard. We filled the entire page with snippets of poems or lyrics, with some rather inexpert doodles; sometimes, I’d paste photos into the letter or squiggle in some band name such as Rush, Talk Talk, or Yes. There was an individualistic art to long-form letter correspondence.

I still have boxes and files full of these letters received from friends, and I cherish them as some of my finest possessions. I hope and trust the recipients of my letters feel the same. These letters represent small but mighty little communities: neighborhoods, suburbs, towns, republics, and – sometimes – dynasties of letters.
— Read on www.acton.org/religion-liberty/volume-30-number-1/solution-cancel-culture-true-community

What matters is that something is happening – AmandaAchtman.ca

Hans Jonas was born into a German Jewish household in 1903. As a boy, he longed for excitement. However, the most exciting events always seemed to be happening elsewhere. It seemed unlikely that he could fulfill his boyhood “dreams of glory” in the monotony of everyday life there.

Before the First World War, the most significant world events in his memory had been the sinking of the Titanic and the Balkan Wars. Comparing these events to his “charmed life — in a country that had known nothing but peace for decades, that was flourishing economically, and as a child in a comfortably situated family,” he found his life and the lives of his family members to be very boring.

— Read on amandaachtman.ca/2020/03/18/what-matters-is-that-something-is-happening/

Did Edmund Burke Support the American Revolution? ~ The Imaginative Conservative

Again, it is possible that Burke actively disliked the principles of the American Revolution, but there exists no such evidence one way or another. What we do know is that Burke, when pushed, supported the American cause for independence, though he very much lamented the breakdown and breakup of the British commonwealth.

From my perspective, Burke was a vital ally in the cause, as patriotic to the American cause as any American revolutionary leader. He not only defended our cause, he did so in a way that could have easily been regarded as treasonous by his own people.
— Read on theimaginativeconservative.org/2020/03/edmund-burke-support-american-revolution-bradley-birzer.html

1939’s “Stagecoach”: The Reign of Justice and Redemption ~ The Imaginative Conservative

The stagecoach, just about to leave town, despite the threats from the Apache, represents American society in every aspect. The local Marshall, Curly, rides shotgun, protecting the stagecoach’s driver, Buck, and their passengers. The passengers include, of course, Boone and Dallas (forced to leave, regardless of danger), a whiskey drummer from Kansas City, Kansas (Mr. Peacock, though everyone refers to him as the Reverend), and, critically, the seemingly-ill wife of an army officer and a high-class lady from Virginia (Mrs. Mallory). As the stagecoach departs, a notorious southern gambler, Mr. Hatfield, attaches himself as “protection for the lady,” and, just as the stagecoach is about to exit town, Gatewood—now illegally in possession of the bank’s money—joins in a getaway attempt, knowing that the telegraph lines have been cut by the Apaches.

En route, Ringo “Henry” Kidd (John Wayne) hitches a ride, having broken out of prison to avenge the killings of his father and brother in Lordsburg. Whatever his crimes, the Kidd is clearly appreciated for his honesty and his good skills.
— Read on theimaginativeconservative.org/2020/03/stagecoach-reign-justice-redemption-bradley-birzer.html

The Bardic Depths – “The Bardic Depths” | The PROG Mind

The Bardic Depths offers an interesting combination of genres.  At its core, the band plays a progressive rock that revels in subtlety, as even the heavier riffs are gentle and easy on the ears.  However, you will find that some of the tracks are akin to progressive electronic/ambient, so not “rock” at all.  Even further, and as the album progresses, you will find a huge portion of jazz fusion in the mix, so be ready for quite a lot of saxophone and bassy grooves.  Somehow, the band puts this all together and makes it work well.
— Read on theprogmind.com/2020/03/13/the-bardic-depths-the-bardic-depths/

The Revival of Socialism ~ The Imaginative Conservative

This was, to be sure, a more innocent time. And, to be certain, there was even a time in my high school years—a less jaded time—in which I assumed most Americans were raised in the same manner and believed as I did. President Reagan, Prime Minister Thatcher, and Pope John Paul II were normal leaders of the West, not extraordinary ones. Many of my teachers—clearly the children of the New Left and the 1960s—revealed to me a blatant hypocrisy.  While they shouted for love, they behaved as would-be tyrants, hypocrites . . . not all . . . but many.

Somehow, and in a myriad of disturbing ways, my delusions and illusions and wishes and hopes and dreams and subjective realities collapsed over the years. Not that I lost faith in liberty, but I’ve certainly lost faith that others kept the faith, if they ever actually had it.

The evidence is more than clear. Communism, socialism, and progressivism have each made huge comebacks, re-entering political discourse blatantly and, just as importantly, very quietly, over the past decades. Even the very words “socialism,” “communism,” and, especially, “progressivism,” have reacquired respect and a semblance of dignity in many circles of public thought and discourse.
— Read on theimaginativeconservative.org/2020/03/revival-socialism-bradley-birzer.html

The Bardic Depths | The Bardic Depths

The Bardic Depths | The Bardic Depths
— Read on thebardicdepths.bandcamp.com/releases

The download is now available for preorder.

Tears For Fears’ Roland Orzabal in the Big Chair: The SDE interview | superdeluxeedition

SDE: What is it, do you think, about the album, that resonates so much with people? Is it just the fact that it’s got massive hit singles on it, or is it something more than that?

RO: I think… I mean, at the time it felt completely disjointed, that we were clutching at straws regarding available songs. We started off with two or three songs and bits of b-sides and within one month I came up with ‘Shout’, ‘Everybody Wants to Rule the World’, and ‘I Believe’. And I think it was when we did ‘Shout’ that we really moved to a completely different gear.

The secrets are in the arrangement and production, because it really is superb
One of the reasons it was called ‘Songs from the Big Chair’, I probably told you this a million times, is that it felt disparate; it wasn’t like The Hurting which was almost like a life work for us. Albeit we were teenagers. Hence the title ‘Songs’ because it just seemed to me like eight separate songs, and even the track ‘Listen’ was an Ian Stanley [keyboard player] demo and made while we were recording The Hurting. But I don’t know why… I think it was possibly the fact that we’d done our initial first demo’s in Ian’s house in Bath. And then he won a little bit of money from the publishing, we built the studio there in a bigger room, in his house. And I think it was almost like coming back to the West Country and even [producer] Chris Hughes had links to Bath, because his mum lived there. So, I think getting out of the huge studios and into this real intimate [setting], the birthplace of Tears for Fears almost, which was Ian Stanley’s house. I think that created this, you know, more of a calm but hot-housed environment. Plus, this massive input of new technology, like the Fairlight, the Synclavier and the Drumulator. We had all these cutting-edge sounds to play with and I think that the secrets are in the arrangement and production, because it really is superb.
— Read on www.superdeluxeedition.com/interview/tears-for-fears-roland-orzabal-in-the-big-chair-the-sde-interview/

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