Browser Daily Newsletter 1328


Hic sunt camelopardus: this historical edition of The Browser is presented for archaeological purposes; links and formatting may be broken.

The Making Of Led Zeppelin’s ‘Whole Lotta Love’

Wall Street Journal | 29th May 2014

Jimmy Page tells the story, with help from engineers George Chkiantz and Eddie Kramer. "As soon as I developed the riff, I knew it was strong enough to drive the entire song, not just open it. When I played the riff for the band in my living room several weeks later during rehearsals for our first album, the excitement was immediate and collective. We felt the riff was addictive, like a forbidden thing" (1,860 words)

Hello, Beethoven

George Stauffer | Weekly Standard | 1st June 2014

John Suchet's "highly entertaining" biography, "Beethoven, The Man Revealed", delivers what the title promises. The music scarcely gets a mention. "Beethoven’s erratic behavior and fiery temperament are front and center". His gastrointestinal problems get pages to themselves. It succeeds. "Rigorous Beethoven scholarship this is not. Yet, somehow, we forgive Suchet, for if he is shameless, he is also sincere" (2,400 words)

The Art Of Non-Fiction: Adam Phillips

Paul Holdengräber | Paris Review | 3rd March 2014

Interview with psychoanalyst. Interesting throughout. "If you buy a fridge, there are certain things you will be guaranteed. If you buy a psychoanalysis, you won’t be. Patients come because they are suffering from something. Ideally, in the process of doing the analysis, they might find their suffering is alleviated or modified, but also they might discover there are more important things than to alleviate one’s suffering" (8,500 words)

Angelina Jolie’s Perfect Game

Anne Helen Petersen | Buzzfeed | 29th May 2014

Jolie "plays the celebrity game better than anyone else in the business". Her image is "built on the infrastructure of the status quo — a straight, white, doting mother engaged in a long-term monogamous relationship". Life with Brad Pitt is "just extraordinary enough to truly entice but never offend". "Lots of celebrities had kids; others had adopted kids; some even had twins. But none had all of the above" (6,530 words)

The Eunuch’s Children

Nicholas Carr | Rough Type | 25th May 2014

Paper survives and thrives despite the digital revolution. "To the human mind, a sequence of pages bound together into a physical object is very different from a flat screen that displays only a single 'page' at a time. The physical presence of the printed pages, and the ability to flip back and forth through them, turns out to be important to the mind’s ability to navigate written works, particularly lengthy and complicated ones" (1,750 words)

The Writers Who Fell In Love With Fascism

David Bell | New Republic | 31st May 2014

Review of "The Embrace of Unreason: France, 1914-1940", by Frederick Brown, on the intellectuals and ideologues who pulled France towards fascism during the last decades of the Third Republic. "It is as if the culture that, perhaps more strongly than any other, celebrated reason and geometrical order, also provoked within itself a deep, wild, and willfully primitive reaction, a return of the repressed" (2,850 words)

Video of the day:  Sting — How I Started Writing Songs Again

What to expect: TED talk; with songs; how Sting overcame writer's block

Thought for the day:

"The war against intelligence is always waged in the name of common sense" — Roland Barthes

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