Product Reviews

Let’s Talk About Amazon’s Home-Patrolling Robots

LG: Now you’ve inspired me to … Well, maybe if I get the headphones, I’ll be inspired to work out. So thank you. I’ll be inspired to do something. I’ve been exercising, but do something maybe a little more active.

AS: I’ll mail you a pair.

LG: Thank you. All right. That’s a great recommendation. Thanks ASO. Snackfight, what’s your recommendation this week?

MC: I’m going to do that thing, which is really annoying both, for you and for everybody who listens and I’m going to recommend some music.

LG: Why is that annoying?

MC: Well, just because I have like non-mainstream taste and I like to tell people about interesting music that they maybe have never heard before and otherwise, would not encounter. And some people think that that’s annoying.

LG: Yeah. Swedish prog rock, hit me with it.

MC: It’s psych pop. Swedish psych pop.

LG: Sorry, but you also listen to prog rock, don’t you?

MC: So the thing that I’m recommending, is from a different part of the world, it is a playlist on Spotify and it is called Folk Fabrique. Two words, folk F-O-L-K. Fabrique like fabric, but spelled the French way with an I-Q-U-E at the end. The Folk Fabrique playlist is a playlist that always exists on Spotify. And it’s usually filled with a lot of north African music. This month, it is curated by the artist Mdou Moctar, who is a really amazing guitarist. And it’s actually like a whole band is called Mdou Moctar, but that’s the name of the main person. And they play this sort of energetic rock, and they’re from the Sahara. So all of the music has all these really wild mix of influences from West Africa, North Africa, Europe, and the United States. And like James Brown.

This playlist is just chalked full of really amazing north African and Saharam music, and I had never heard of any of these artists before. And so many of them have just these rich discographies and just amazing sounds. And really wild styles of singing, and playing, and rhythms. I can’t recommend it enough. If you are an adventurous music listener, and you’re really into the kind of funky weird stuff, then you should check out the Folk Fabrique playlist on Spotify, curated by Mdou Moctar. Now, I don’t know how long that curation is going to last. It’ll probably stay up for a few months, but it might go away tomorrow. So either way, the playlist has always been great, but it’s extra great right now.

AS: Mike, by far the worst part of reviewing workout headphones, is having to reveal and print that all I listen to is Kesha and Jesse J. So I need all the help I can get, and I will click on this immediately.

MC: I’ll send you music recommendations all the time if you want.

LG: Mike, you actually have really great music recommendations. And the last time you were over here, I put you in charge of the Sonos and you did play a pretty great playlist. And I think I gave it like two hours and then I was like, “OK, I’m putting something else on that’s more mainstream.”

MC: That’s am eternity for me.

LG: It was pretty great though.

MC: What’s your recommendation, Lauren?

LG: My recommendation this week comes from actually someone I would call a friend of the pod. Anne Helen Peterson is a Substack writer. She writes the Substack Culture Study. She has been on the show before to talk about burnout and her book about burnout. And she’s been working on a Peloton series as part of her Substack. She calls it an ongoing on the overarching cultural significance of Peloton. I’m very intrigued by Peloton, I’m a Peloton user. I’ve written about it for WIRED before. And I’m generally just kind of interested in not only what the company is doing, but why this particular digital workout brand has managed to attract such a rabid user base, and what its special sauce kind of is. And so she had done a couple of earlier pieces. This one this week, is really good. It’s called “The Counterintuitive Mechanics of Peloton Addiction.”

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