Then and Now Reviews


Aidan McFarland

For this month’s issue of the West Gazette, I will be reviewing Chaos: Charles Manson, the CIA, and the Secret History of the Sixties, The Meter’s self-titled debut album, and Somebody Feed Phil.

Let us start out with Tom O’Neill’s Chaos: Charles Manson, the CIA, and the Secret History of the Sixties. Chaos is a book that dives deep into the notorious cult group, the Manson Family, who are infamously known for the Tate-LaBianca murders that took place over two August nights in 1969. This book goes over the events that took place the night of the murders and the very possible reasons why such murders occurred. I found this book to be extremely fascinating! As someone who has always been intrigued by the Manson Family and the overall period of the late 1960s, this book was right up my alley. Even with this in mind though, I feel even somebody who has not even heard of the Manson Family murders can still very much enjoy this spellbinding true crime story. Chaos is filled to the brim with interesting information and the possible reasons why the Manson murders took place which may be connected to mind control, cover-ups, and the CIA.

Secondly, I will be reviewing one of the funkiest albums there is, which is The Meter’s self-titled debut released in 1969. This album is funk at its finest, and it is impossible to not tap your foot or move your head to the beat while listening to it. It is an album I often find myself coming back to since it is so versatile. You can put this album on for a dinner party, or if you want to chill in your room, or if you want something to walk down the street to. If I were stuck on a deserted island, this is, without a doubt, one of the albums I would take with me. I cannot recommend it enough. Whether you are feeling good and want something to match that vibe, or you are feeling down and need something to raise your spirits, this album is the answer.

If you love food and travel shows as much as I do, I would like to express my love for my personal favorite, Somebody Feed Phil. In this show, we follow Phil Rosenthal who travels the world visiting some of the best restaurants, seeing the most beautiful sights, and meeting wonderful people around the globe. This is a show I watch to feel inspired since it is filled with positive energy and makes you want to travel or cook or be with friends (a.k.a. all the things that make life grand). If those things are not necessarily accessible, then you can just put on an episode of Somebody Feed Phil, grab something to eat, and spend time with Phil in Rio or Cape Town or Bangkok or one of the other dozens of locations there are. It is a show I love dearly, and it brings me such joy, and it is also a great show to watch with friends or your family or just with yourself (available on Netflix).