Click here for updates on the evolving COVID-19 situation at Rice
Rice University’s Student Newspaper — Since 1916

Friday, September 25, 2020 — Houston, TX °

Arts and Entertainment


A&E 9/22/20 11:29pm

Rice students take the mic with independent podcasts

The beauty of podcasts comes from their convenience — plug in your headphones, press play and go about your day — you’ll find that more often than not, podcasts will fall seamlessly into your schedule. While plenty of Rice students have turned to podcasts to break up the monotony of their routine, a handful of owls have traded headphones for microphones and started shows of their own. If, like me, you’ve struggled to fill the empty stretches of silence of your days in quarantine, consider listening to these four podcasts created by your fellow Rice students.   


A&E 9/22/20 11:27pm

A First Look into the Moody’s Fall 2020 Exhibition: States of Mind: Art and American Democracy

What really is democracy? What does it mean to be a democracy and what does it entail? The Moody Center for the Arts’s new fall exhibition, “States of Mind: Art and American Democracy,” seeks to answer these questions, although perhaps not in the way you might imagine. Moody’s newest exhibit, organized by Associate Curator Ylinka Barotto, introduces new perspectives and angles from artists telling their own stories in their own ways, particularly focusing on national issues affecting Texas. Its goal is to drive new thoughts and deeper revelations in viewers. Art, after all, is not about giving direct answers, but coming to your own.  


A&E 9/22/20 11:22pm

Bakerites channel anxieties into art in new exhibit, “PANDEMIA”

Any other year, Baker College’s P-Quad would be bustling with people gathering to eat, study, and socialize. COVID-19 restrictions this semester have subdued some of that energy, but recently, students and faculty across Rice have been flocking there for an unexpected reason. For the next month, P-Quad will be home to PANDEMIA: an outdoor art exhibit featuring students’ perspectives on the COVID-19 pandemic.  


A&E 9/22/20 11:17pm

Hanszen quad fills with music and community in new evening concert series

 Masked musicians, small groups and livestreaming equipment, all outdoors — the inaugural concert of the Hanszen Family Heart Chamber Music Festival showed us what performance looks like in a pandemic. The concert, held last Friday, Sept. 18 in Hanszen College’s quad, was the first in a series planned to recur on the third Friday of each month this semester, according to festival organizer and horn player Shawn Zheng. 



A&E 9/22/20 8:16pm

Review: The Flaming Lips dig deep with “American Head”

One of the most influential experimental psychedelic rock groups since the 1980s, The Flaming Lips have never been a band to bow to convention. Their new album “American Head” continues the group’s tradition of strong narrative songs sublimated by ethereal vocals and psychedelic musical experimentation. It follows their 2019 concept album “King’s Mouth,” an effort inspired by frontman Wayne Coyne’s art exhibit of the same name and narrated by Mick Jones of The Clash. 


A&E 9/22/20 8:13pm

NIKI shatters expectations and proves her prowess with debut album “Moonchild”

NIKI, the rising pop sensation hailing from Asian-based music collective 88rising recently released her highly anticipated debut album, “Moonchild.” Dubbed as the “internet’s favorite R&B princess” from the start of her career, Nicole Zefanya, better known as NIKI, is a 21-year-old Indonesian singer-songwriter. Niki’s breakout EP “Zephyr” catapulted her on the path to stardom and put her name on the map of emerging pop sensations as she racked up millions of streams across songs.


A&E 9/15/20 10:46pm

Sleepy Cyborg Galley kicks off semester with virtual exhibit, “Quaranzine”

In a world becoming increasingly dependent on dual-delivery, one has to ask how visual art, a mode of communication previously relegated mostly to the physical, is adapting to the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic.  An example of this dual-delivery form of visual art can be found at the newly renamed, student-run Sleepy Cyborg Gallery in their first exhibition of the year called “quaranzine.”  



A&E 9/15/20 9:29pm

Houston’s Third and Fifth Wards designated new cultural districts

The Texas Commission on the Arts designated Houston’s Third and Fifth Wards as cultural districts on Sept. 3. Home to historical landmarks, cultural diversity and notable figures in education, music, politics and art, these neighborhoods have played an influential role both in Houston and the Black community at-large. 


A&E 9/15/20 8:45pm

Review: Daphne X creates worlds of sound both familiar and strange on new album "Água Viva"

 You have to listen to "Água Viva" on headphones — it's the intended experience. The textures on this album are sonorous and immaculate, and Greek sound artist Daphne X weaves them into a membrane that fully encloses the listener's auditory space. In doing so, she offers a welcome escape into a world that facilitates the spatial and environmental awareness so often missing from our lives in quarantine. 


A&E 9/15/20 7:37pm

Review: Big Sean pays tribute to Motor City on “Detroit 2”

“Detroit 2” is a feature filled homage to Big Sean’s hometown of Detroit, enlivened through spoken word stories and evocative lyricism. Although Sean had originally planned to announce the project on March 13 to coincide with “313 Day,” a celebration of Detroit, the announcement was postponed to later that month due to the COVID pandemic. Following months of anticipation, Big Sean’s passionate ode to his home dropped on the promised date of Sept. 4 along with a capsule of merchandise. 



A&E 9/8/20 9:15pm

Visit Houston's Hidden Secrets: Oddities in the Bayou City!

In my angsty high school grief in 2017, I explored the nooks and crannies of my city that embodied the state of limbo I felt in my soul. The eclectic spoke to me as I acted without regard for imaginary futures and instead felt grounded in the odd flux between a rich but ultimately irrelevant past and an electrifying present. As I find myself facing a similar sense of instability this semester, I return to the curiosities of Houston, Texas and share them with others currently bursting with wanderlust. 


A&E 9/8/20 9:04pm

Black Art at Rice: A Conversation with Chabrielle Allen

This week, the Thresher sat down with Chabrielle Allen (Hanszen College ’20), an alumna who earned her Bachelor of Arts in religion with a focus on culture and society in August. Currently living in her hometown of Roswell, New Mexico, Allen spoke about her artistic journey during her time at Rice, the intersection of technology and art and the importance of diverse representation in the art world. 


A&E 9/1/20 7:29pm

Local Asian American artists respond to the pandemic in new Fondren exhibit

Now on display in Fondren Library, Houston Asian American Archive’s “Faces in the Pandemic” exhibit explores Asian American experiences during the COVID-19 pandemic through dynamic visual art, fostering reflection and discussion on relevant topics of racism, isolation, history and intersectionality. The exhibit explores a history of Asian American discrimination from the early 1800s to today and prompts the viewer to think about what this moment will look like in our collective history. 



A&E 9/1/20 7:13pm

Forgotten Gems: Feel Good Now EP Is The Most Underrated Pop Project of the 2010s

 Imagine you’re me in 2011. Ouch. Ouch ouch. Wait fuck. That hurts. Is that the nascent depression or the repressed sexuality? Okay, don’t imagine you’re me in 2011. Instead, picture a young, swoopy haired tween sitting at the desk under their bunk bed and churning out some homework for Mrs. Parker’s seventh period English. A young Jacob is listening to their favorite Pandora station: “Fall For You” radio, based off the one-hit wonder power ballad by Secondhand Serenade. Suddenly, the mire of dad rock and pop punk is cut through by a warbly synthetic lead and bandpassed vocals before breaking down into an R&B-inspired pop verse. I liked the song almost immediately. It was “Notions” by The Ready Set.


A&E 9/1/20 7:07pm

Katy Perry drops uncharacteristic yet hope-filled album “Smile” as “Teenage Dream” turns 10

Aug. 24 was the 10th anniversary of Katy Perry’s “Teenage Dream,” her generation-defining pop album. She then delivered her first child on Aug. 26 after an engagement with Orlando Bloom last year, and two days later, dropped her sixth studio album, “Smile.” Her latest album was disappointing, nothing like the Katy Perry you know, and only the third most significant part of her week.