of Montreal blend a decidedly classic set of influences with modern production sensibilities to create piece of art that coalesces into something unique on their latest release, Innocence Reaches. Band visionary Kevin Barnes and his collaborators achieve a new level of balance and accessibility to their efforts while merging vintage and modern electronic dance music. By giving listeners a familiar starting point, synth-heavy pop of the early eighties, Barnes and company are able to explore and create something new without worrying that they have lost their listeners along the way.It’s easy to look at of Montreal’s entire history as an incredibly extended and inscrutable love letter to merging art and perfect pop from band visionary Kevin Barnes. In of Montreal’s twenty years of existence, they have followed a wide variety of sonic directions, to varying degrees of success and acceptance. Devout fans anticipate each album trusting that while of Montreal might bring a different style to their each of their recordings, the spirit and passion behind them will permeate the project. Innocence Reaches seems like an effort to expand their audience rather than court their existing fan base, and these more open and airy songs will likely do just that.Crafting tunes like the intro track “Let’s Relate,” a song that could easily be on the play list of any Top 40 station across the nation in 1985, Barnes and company show a sharp eye for details. Vintage drum machine beats guide the tune and much of the record bring a simple nostalgic charm to the proceedings, at least on the surface. Lyrically the material skews in an oddly immature direction, as songs like “It’s Different For Girls” and “My Fair lady” crackle with pop energy but contain almost child like views on gender issues. In a way, in playing music styles from the past of Montreal has apparently decided to “Method Act” out their regression as well.Brief escapes from the album’s theme like the fuzz box guitar laden “Les Chants de Maldoror” evoke earlier, rockier efforts but “A Sport And A Pastime” quickly brings back the bubbly pop. It’s difficult to decipher exactly what Nicolas Dobbratz and Clayton Rychlik are doing in the perfect production sheen that the notoriously finicky Barnes leans towards, but the dexterity the pair show over the course of Innocence Reaches clearly establishes their ability to craft whatever soundscape is asked of them with style.One of the risks of relying heavily on technological instrumentation is the potential loss of connection between the artist and the listener, but on Innocence Reaches the band side-steps those dangers through charm and inescapable hooks. “Ambassador Bridge” blips and bleeps along with the most danceable retro-disco beat of the collection that, as usual, disguises a darker lyrical point. Treading towards the psychedelic darkness of sixties era pop “Chaos Arpeggiating” makes great use of break downs and negative musical space.Closing track “Chap Pilot” finds of Montreal at a bit of a musical cross roads. The band has slowly been wandering down a more and more electronic focused path on this and their previous release, Aureate Gloom. Though there still seems to be room to grow and refine their current mission to mix dance music of the past and present, the abrupt cut off at the end of the disc seems to portend yet another dimension coming in the future. Easily one of the great charms of Montreal brings to the table is their ability to reinvent themselves on the fly. The one thing that you can safely assume about of Montreal is that whatever direction they decide to pursue their muse it will make for some intriguing listening, as this new release evocatively proves.
Since their recent launch of an iPhone app meant to guide Catholics through confession, Notre Dame doctoral candidate Ryan Kreager and his business partners Chip and Patrick Leinen have sold thousands of apps and received a great deal of media attention. The app, titled “Confession: A Roman Catholic App,” is based on an examination of consciousness by Fr. Dan Scheidt, pastor of Mishawaka’s Queen of Peace Church and a Notre Dame graduate. Scheidt originally developed it for use in his own parish. “The examination of consciousness at its very nature is a general diagnostic tool,” Scheidt said. “I took what I thought was most helpful from several and developed one for the adults in my parish.” Scheidt said the app helps Catholics focus during confession. “The app helps people who are so anxious about confession that they forget some or all of what they were going to say and it helps focus their thoughts,” Scheidt said. “An unanticipated way in which it is helping is students who have special needs. They use their iPhone to help focus on what they want to say.” Kreager said they launched the app through their business Little i Apps, LLC. He thought of the idea by talking to his sister’s boyfriend. “John [Deng] and I were just talking about confession,” Kreager said. “He made a comment about making confession easier and we thought there should be an app for that.” Deng did not want to be involved in the app development process, so Kreager took the idea to the Leinen brothers. They jumped at the chance. The three self-described “Catholic Geeks” did have some experience in programming and web development, but had never developed an app before. “There was a learning curve on the app development side,” Kreager said. “But for us, this was an evening and weekends project.” After about six months, they released a prototype of the app to a few close friends and a local youth group. Soon after their beta testing ended, the app was released. The app received an imprimatur, an official statement from a bishop that states that there are no doctrinal or moral errors. Bishop Kevin Rhoades, of the Fort Wayne-South Bend diocese, granted the examination of consciousness the imprimatur. “As far as we know, we are the first app to receive this,” Kreager said. “It gave the app a credibility that it wouldn’t have had otherwise.” The examination of consciousness the app uses is what specifically received the imprimatur. Scheidt said non-Catholics also use the app just to look at their life and examine the choices they are making. “This gives non-Catholics who are unfamiliar with confession the ability to see and learn more about the sacrament,” Scheidt said. Even though the app has proved to be helpful, Kreager said there has been misleading media coverage of it. Originally, coverage was only picked up by some Catholic blogs and news sources, he said. Other media outlets eventually picked up the story of the app and some even reported that the Catholic Church had approved confession via iPhone. Some news sources retracted their false statements, while Kreager said others did not. “The Vatican released a statement saying that they are not opposed to the app as long as it is used correctly,” Kreager said. “We also issued a statement saying that we stand fully behind the Vatican’s statement and that the app is just an aid to confession, not a replacement.” Scheidt said the confession app “has generated a conversation about confession that would be difficult to pay an advertising company to replicate. It has gotten people talking and that’s a good thing.” With all the coverage, the app was even mentioned in jokes on both Conan O’Brien and Jay Leno’s television shows, Kreager said. Currently the team is working on adding new features such as customizable sin lists, porting it to the Android and translating the app into several other languages.
Dele Alli is also sidelined (Picture: Getty Images)Dele Alli is also out, but is someway behind Kane in his recovery, still expected to return in March rather than any earlier.Alli could still return for the North London Derby against Arsenal on 2 March, however.Before then, Spurs travel to Burnley on 23 February and then go to Chelsea on Wednesday 27 February.MORE: Jurgen Klopp names which competition Liverpool fans want to win the mostMORE: Andreas Christensen reveals Chelsea’s hierarchy convinced him to stay during January transfer window Kane could be back this weekend (Picture: Getty Images)‘He’s doing well. He’s doing fantastic,’ said Pochettino. ‘We have to stop him every day, because he wants to be ahead of his recovery and he’s very optimistic and his determination to play as soon as possible is unbelievable.’AdvertisementAdvertisement‘If you see him, he’s nearly ready to play, but we need to be realistic too. I think he’s so close to come back again, not for Sunday and not for Wednesday, but we’ll see after.’Tottenham didn’t need Kane in either the Leicester or the following Borussia Dortmund match, winning both and scoring three times in each.However, with Premier League fixtures against Chelsea and Arsenal in the coming weeks, Pochettino will be desperate to get his first-choice striker back. Comment Phil HaighMonday 18 Feb 2019 3:36 pmShare this article via facebookShare this article via twitterShare this article via messengerShare this with Share this article via emailShare this article via flipboardCopy link Harry Kane is not far from a return to fitness (Picture: Getty Images)Harry Kane has been out for just over a month but he is getting very close to a return to fitness with Tottenham Hotspur.The England captain damaged his ankle ligaments against Manchester United on 13 January, and the initial prognosis was that he would be out until March.Rio Ferdinand urges Ole Gunnar Solskjaer to drop Manchester United starHowever, he appears to have shown impressive powers of recovery and could be back on the field as soon as this weekend.Spurs boss Mauricio Pochettino gave an update before Tottenham’s last Premier League game against Leicester, suggesting Kane could be back for the trip to Burnley this weekend.ADVERTISEMENT Advertisement When is Harry Kane back from injury? Tottenham striker is nearing a return Advertisement