Best Weekend

Best Weekend: Patti Smith’s ‘M Train,’ New Music from Tori Amos, + More

What we'll be listening to, watching, and reading to sate our pop culture needs.

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We’re going to pull up an armchair, raise a glass of hot tea, and toast to the fall with a slew of great reads, good music, titillating TV, and one self-referential horror movie. 

‘M Train’ by Patti Smith

We’ve been waiting for a follow up to Patti Smith’s Just Kids since the heady holiday season of 2010 when every single person on the subway had the punk icon’s love letter to Robert Mapplethorpe and New York in their hands. Though M Train takes on a much wider subject range (detective novels to real estate), and a less linear narrative, it’s still all Smith, a voice we’ll never tire of.

Tori Amos—‘The Light Princess’

Tori Amos may have originated the confessional singer-songwriter genre, but The Light Princess is something new for the angsty pianist. This double album is the soundtrack to her eponymous musical (based on a fairytale of the same name) that opened in London in 2013. Though most of the songs are sung by the cast, Amos does perform two herself and for fans, getting to immerse themselves in a world of Amos’s compositions is a fairytale in and of itself. 

‘The Final Girls’ starring Taissa Farmiga + Malin Ackerman

Horror movies don’t really do it for us, but horror movies spoofs? Yes, please. Especially ones that directly poke fun at the Halloweens of our youth. In this one, Max (Taissa Farmiga) and her best friend Gertie (Alia Shawkat), get time-warped into the fictional horror movie Bloodbath that Max’s mom (Malin Ackerman) starred in. Will they live till the credits roll??

‘The Clasp’ by Sloane Crosley

Sloane Crosley was at the forefront of our current wave of women writing irreverent personal essays with 2008’s I Was Told There’d Be Cake, but now the humorist and pop culture writer has moved over to fiction. The Clasp, inspired by Guy de Maupassant’s story “The Necklace,” is a modern-day caper and also a Millennial tale of quarter-life crises, spurned by the main characters’ reunion at a college friend’s wedding. We liked Crosley’s essays. We’ve got a feeling we’re gonna love her novel. 

‘AHS: Hotel’ Redux

Call us gluttons for punishment, we always come back for more of Ryan Murphy’s gory, visceral creepfests. What will an American Horror Story be like without Jessica Lange? Does Lady Gaga have enough of a poker face to pull off her bloodsucking sex diva role? Some of us checked into the Shining-esque Art Deco Hotel Cortez on Wednesday night’s season premiere, some of us need to catch up over the weekend (or want to rewind). This much is for certain: Once you enter Hotel, whether as a viewer or as one of Gaga’s guests, you’re gonna have a helluva time getting out.

‘Slaughterhouse 90210’ by Maris Kreizman

Maris Kreizman’s Tumblr Slaughterhouse 90210, which marries quotes from literature with pop culture moments, is equal parts genius and hilarious and now we get it in book form. A perfect way to constantly revisit the surprising poignancy the juxtaposition of great passages with our favorite fictional characters (Selina Meyer, Tony Soprano) and IRL icons (Taylor Swift) imparts. 

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