British musicians, authors offer entertainment, simple styles

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Q: I have really been going through a British phase lately. What do you think about music and the like from “across the pond?”
                               
A: There is something about the British. I won’t say they have a better country, because I love the U.S., but my favorite bands and authors have one more thing in common: They are British.
    The Arctic Monkeys, my favorite band, are from High Green, England. They have recently surpassed CAKE as my No. 1 band, something I didn’t think any band could do.
    The fact that there are no wasted lyrics in their music is what drew me to them the fastest. Not all of their songs are deep and thought provoking — in fact, few of them are — but all the lyrics involved contribute to the overall song.
    Just because their songs do not discuss nuclear disarmament, does not discount the band members as lyricists. Songs like “Still Take You Home” tell stories but allow the listener to enjoy the music without having to get too deeply involved.
    After going back again and again, I learned that their music is great as well. They are very simple because they don’t try and use too many special effects to compensate for a lack of skill.
    I also happen to love British literature; I especially enjoy the work of authors J.K. Rowling and Roald Dahl. They are by no means the best — we are talking about the country that produced Clive Staples Lewis and J.R.R. Tolkien — but their work is what I, as a modern reader, prefer.
    Something about the way they write captivates me. Like their British musical counterparts, I feel there are very few wasted elements in their productions.
    For Rowling’s now world-famous Harry Potter series to work, she had to create an entirely new world for her characters to live in, and she did so in a fabulous and somewhat-realistic way. Never once did I question any element of the story or have a difficult time believing in what she was writing. And the way Rowling managed to keep her audience salivating over her books for more than 10 years is testament enough to her brilliance as a writer.
    Roald Dahl, my favorite author of all time, also hails from Great Britain.
    In my opinion, the greatest element of Dahl’s writing lies in his storytelling. His books are written primarily for children, but there is an underlying element that keeps adults interested in the story. His books are also comparable to Pixar movies: They are created for children, but the intricacy and relevance are just a few aspects adults can enjoy as well.
 

Eric Davis is a fifth-year senior in print journalism. Please send comments to edge@spub.ksu.edu.

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