AppleMagazine #353

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United States
Ivan Castilho de Almeida
26 号


on ‘vicious,’ halestorm rides on elevated thrash-pop

Halestorm, “Vicious” (Atlantic) “Vicious” comes five years after Halestorm’s Grammy-winning hit “Love Bites (So Do I)” became the group’s standing claim to mainstream fame. Produced by Nick Raskulinecz, who has worked with bands like Foo Fighters and Alice in Chains, “Vicious” is a jump in sonic variety since the band’s third full-length album, “Into the Wild Life,” topped the rock charts in 2015. The new album stays true to the band’s longstanding creative elements. The cryptic but assertive attitude of Lzzy Hale’s diverse vocal range and raunchy guitar riffs team up well with her brother Arejay’s locomotive percussion, Joe Hottinger’s sharp guitar work and Josh Smith’s thumping bass walks. On “Vicious,” the group takes their raw and abrasive guitar sound up a notch with more polished, virtuoso axe-playing. It’s also worth noting that Lzzy’s…

fending off fortnite: can overwatch stay atop esports world?

The Overwatch League has planted its flag atop the esports mountain. But just like its twitchy-thumbed superstars, the premier circuit can’t afford to sit still. Not as long as Fortnite commands the rest of the gaming universe. The Fortnite phenomenon has put Overwatch in a strange position. The Overwatch League’s inaugural season has been a barrier-breaking achievement, but Blizzard Entertainment’s 6-on-6 first-person shooter isn’t nearly the world’s most popular video game. That would be Fortnite, a battle royale that has transcended gaming and smashed into the mainstream unlike any title in years. Overwatch executives say they aren’t nearly panicked because of one grand gamble: their deep pockets and impressive infrastructure can keep Fortnite from making a successful charge for the crown. THE LEAGUE A top-selling game doesn’t necessarily make an elite esport — the…

amazon’s quarterly profit tops $2 billion for first time

Amazon’s quarterly profit soared past $2 billion for the first time as its online shopping, cloud computing and advertising businesses kept growing. The company, which has expanded far beyond its online bookseller beginnings, is also moving into health care and building up its physical presence as it cements customer loyalty through its smart devices and Prime membership of shipping and streaming perks. Revenue soared 39 percent in the second quarter, but missed analysts’ expectations. The financial results still pleased investors, who sent its shares up more than 3 percent to $1,866.55 in after-hours trading. Its stock is already up nearly 72 percent in the last year, and Amazon is getting closer to surpassing Apple as the world’s most valuable company. Amazon did suffer a rare setback last week, when its Prime Day sales event…

for better sleep, doctors suggest low-tech, cheap solutions

Millions of people struggle to get enough sleep — and to stay alert the next day. Lots of apps, fitness trackers, smartwatches and even mattress motion sensors claim they can diagnose or treat sleep problems. But sleep disorder doctors say there’s little evidence consumer gadgets actually improve sleep. “The technology can help describe the problem,” such as waking repeatedly or too early, said Dr. Douglas Kirsch, president of the American Academy of Sleep Medicine. “It does not tell you what the cause is” or how to fix it. Experts say such products have some value: They make people focus on and try to improve their sleep. AMERICA’S SLEEP PROBLEM According to the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, about one-third of adults and two-thirds of high school students report regularly getting less than the…

iowa education backers hope to extend sales tax for schools

As they call for more money for classrooms, Iowa school advocates hope legislators will extend a sales tax levy that pours millions of dollars each year into infrastructure and technology for the state’s public schools. Bipartisan negotiations over the past couple years have resulted in a plan to extend a statewide 1 cent sales tax for another 20 years to fund school infrastructure projects while limiting the need for schools to issue bonds that drive up property taxes. The efforts have been underway as funding for school aid remains a hot-button issue with regular partisan clashes. A bill was overwhelmingly passed by the Iowa House last spring to reauthorize the sales tax, known as the Secure an Advanced Vision for Education program, but the Senate never voted on it. Legislative leaders indicated…

doen deal: what disney’s fox acquisition means for the industry

WHAT DISNEY’S FOX DEAL MEANS FOR THE INDUSTRY With Disney and 21st Century Fox’s $71.3 billion merger now approved by shareholders, it seems all but certain that the deal will be confirmed in the coming months. Two of the world’s biggest and most powerful media giants are joining forces to expand their international reach and fight off competition from new players like YouTube and Netflix. Today, we pull back the curtain and take a look at the short and sweet history of one of Hollywood’s most dramatic bidding wars, explore Disney’s upcoming Netflix challenger, and look at how competitors in the entertainment industry are planning to retaliate to a Disney/Fox attack. A NAIL-BITING BIDDING WAR Whether you’re on the side of the Mouse and the Fox, or you’re against the idea of a merger…