Episode #1129

Spy Fiction, Disco Revolution

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Friday, July 16, 2010

Studio 360 Episode 1129, Spy Fiction, Disco Revolution Alan Furst (Shonna Valeska)

This week, it feels like the 1970s all over again. Eastern European spies grab headlines and flamboyant disco stars top the charts. Kurt Andersen talks with Alan Furst, author of the new thriller Spies of the Balkans. And a professor explains how disco changed music and American society way more than we think. Plus, the experimental bands Matmos and So Percussion get together, and music happens when they break out a cactus and a bucket of water.

Alan Furst

Spies are in the news again, but they've been in Alan Furst's fiction for over 20 years. His new novel, Spies of the Balkans, is his 11th work of World War II-era espionage fiction. The book has been getting great reviews, but Furst tells Kurt he ...

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Matmos & So Percussion

A bucket of water, a piece of sheet metal, and a cactus. Just the average instrument checklist for Treasure State, a new collaboration between the bands Matmos and So Percussion. Performing live in the studio, they show Kurt how they use ordinary objects to make not-so-ordinary ...


Bonus Track: "Cross"

Matmos and So Percussion perform the track from their new album, Treasure State, live in Studio 360.


Aha Moment: "The Searchers"

Vito Acconci's work as an artist and architect often confuses the boundaries between public and private space. In 1964 Acconci saw a movie that would shape his career as an architect: John Ford's "The Searchers," starring John Wayne.

Weigh in: Has a work of art changed ...

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Disco Revolution

Disco is supposedly dead, but University of Southern California professor Alice Echols tells Kurt it's very much alive in the pop music we hear today. Echols' new book is Hot Stuff: Disco and the Remaking of American Culture.

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Belly Dancers in Detroit

While the economy decays, there's no shortage of work for belly dancers in Detroit. The city has one of the largest Arab populations outside of the Middle East and a vast network of dancers. Martina Guzman explores the belly dance scene and the conflicts the community ...

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