Overrated/Underrated: ‘The Masked Singer’s’ psychedelic rise, and Disneyland’s price hikes
The ‘get off the stage’ music: After a Golden Globes led by some of the most Golden Globe-iest winners years (sure, “Bohemian Rhapsody,” as best film of the year, why not?) the stranger trend was winners overpowering the musical cues to wrap up their speeches. While no one wants to miss wonderfully candid moments with the likes of Glenn Close, Olivia Colman and Regina King, usually there’s no stopping the swell of those strings as these bloated shows struggle to hit the broadcast deadline. But now it seems that if someone just speaks loudly enough, they can plow through rules and decorum. Where do you think that idea came from?
The Joy Formidable’s ‘Aaarth’: A rambunctious noise-rock band from Wales that recently relocated to Utah, the Joy Formidable’s latest album may have been lost in the shuffle amid more on-trend new releases last fall. Don’t make that mistake. Fronted by Ritzy Bryan, whose airy but determined vocals can sound swallowed by a storm or leading its attack, the band has a way with finding new wrinkles in the tried-and-true mix of electronics, drums and guitars on songs like “Dance of the Lotus,” “Cicada (Land on Your Back)” and “The Better Me.” Taken together, the album is a 45-minute argument for the continued health of rock ‘n roll.
‘The Masked Singer’: A surrealistic and shamelessly weird TV love-child of H.R. Pufnstuf and “American Idol,” this singing competition based on a South Korean original earned the highest ratings of any unscripted series debut in roughly seven years. Was its secret the irresistible star power of host Nick Cannon paired with semi-celebrity panelists such as Jenny McCarthy and Nicole Scherzinger? Or was it the raw television magic that results when an NFL star dressed as a hippo tries to sing Bobby Brown? It’s hard to say, but it’s a safe bet that the increasing legalization of recreational drugs can’t be hurting its chances either.
Disneyland: On some level, you have to give the Mouse credit for business savvy. Supply and demand dictates that if this cultishly adored theme park is too crowded — and it is always too crowded — then prices must be too low, which is why this week the cost for a daily pass and parking went up by close to 25% in some cases. But with this summer’s reveal of a much-anticipated “Star Wars”-land, which promises 14 acres of rides, attractions and parents reciting old movie quotes to weary snack vendors, demand will soon go even higher. You don’t need to use the Force to imagine these prices will find a way to keep rising too.
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