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[Binge This Week]

Binge This Week: ‘Dead to Me,’ Daniel Radcliffe reads ‘Harry Potter,’ Murakami short stories and more

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Daniel Radcliffe
Illustration: Evan Agostini / AP, Shutterstock
  • Music: Emeralds

    Since disbanding in 2013, the ex-members of Cleveland ambient/drone trio Emeralds—John Elliott, Steve Hauschildt and Mark McGuire—have continued delivering a flood of spacey electronic scapes. This month, they also glanced back at the days when they layered analog synth washes and looped guitar sounds as a trio, issuing eight out-of-print (or never-released) gems on Bandcamp for free streaming or paid downloading.

    Included are some neat rarities: Live II collects seven extended show pieces, while Grass Ceiling and Planetarium restore hypnotic cassettes. But the top pick here is 2007’s towering Allegory of Allergies, a summation of Emeralds’ murky early work with hints of the cleaner, more melodic approach that would define the group’s final years.

    Put your earphones in, turn the lights off and tune out everything else going on in the world. emeraldsohio.bandcamp.com. –Spencer Patterson

  • Television: Cowboy Bebop

    There are two things you should know about Cowboy Bebop, the influential 1998 anime series created by Shinichiro Watanabe. The first is that Netflix is remaking it as a live-action series starring Star Trek’s John Cho and Luke Cage’s Mustafa Shakir (good casting). Second: It’s hard to imagine it standing up to the original. Bebop is a miracle—a bouillabaisse of sci-fi, film noir, westerns and human drama, with an ineffable jazz soundtrack by the great Yoko Kanno. Don’t wait for the remake. Hulu. –Geoff Carter

  • Audiobook: Daniel Radcliffe reads Harry Potter

    Why quarantine at home when you could instead isolate at Hogwarts? To help wizards of all ages endure the pandemic, the official Harry Potter website (wizardingworld.com) has gathered celebrities to read J.K. Rowling’s seminal Harry Potter and the Sorcerer’s Stone. Actor Daniel Radcliffe reads Chapter 1, followed by Eddie Redmayne, Stephen Fry and others. Spotify or wizardingworld.com/chapters. –C. Moon Reed

  • Book: The Elephant Vanishes

    Known for exploring the depths of mundane absurdity, Haruki Murakami takes magical realism to bizarre levels in this collection of short stories, published by the famed Japanese author at the beginning of his career in the early 1990s. For the unacquainted, The Elephant Vanishes serves as an entryway into many of Murakami’s later works, forming the beginning sketches of characters that reappear in future novels. From a woman who hasn’t slept in 17 days to a newlywed couple that robs a McDonald’s, Murakami brings surreal, dreamlike eeriness to the humdrum of waking life. –Leslie Ventura

  • Television: Dead to Me

    The first season of Dead to Me ended on a cliffhanger, and Season 2 picks up right there. The dark comedy starring Christina Applegate and Linda Cardellini is even better this time around—the relationship between the two women, who were brought together through a horrific event, deepens as they face even more dire circumstances. Applegate, whose body of work goes back to her teens, contributes some of her strongest. Kelly Bundy’s all grown up, and she can take care of herself just fine. (And in a clever bit of casting, Katey Sagal, who played mom Peggy Bundy on Married… With Children, makes a cameo.) Netflix. –Genevie Durano

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  • A weekend in Vegas right now consists of gaming, eating and drinking, and maybe visiting the pool or spa or another attraction at your hotel.

  • The six-song project oscillates between house-driven electronic rhythms and indie-leaning synth-pop.

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