Skip to main content
The Globe and Mail
Get full access to globeandmail.com
Support quality journalism
Just $1.99 per week for the first 24 weeks
Just $1.99 per week for the first 24 weeks
The Globe and Mail
Support quality journalism
Get full access to globeandmail.com
Globe and Mail website displayed on various devices
Just$1.99
per week
for the first 24 weeks

var select={root:".js-sub-pencil",control:".js-sub-pencil-control",open:"o-sub-pencil--open",closed:"o-sub-pencil--closed"},dom={},allowExpand=!0;function pencilInit(o){var e=arguments.length>1&&void 0!==arguments[1]&&arguments[1];select.root=o,dom.root=document.querySelector(select.root),dom.root&&(dom.control=document.querySelector(select.control),dom.control.addEventListener("click",onToggleClicked),setPanelState(e),window.addEventListener("scroll",onWindowScroll),dom.root.removeAttribute("hidden"))}function isPanelOpen(){return dom.root.classList.contains(select.open)}function setPanelState(o){dom.root.classList[o?"add":"remove"](select.open),dom.root.classList[o?"remove":"add"](select.closed),dom.control.setAttribute("aria-expanded",o)}function onToggleClicked(){var l=!isPanelOpen();setPanelState(l)}function onWindowScroll(){console.log("scroll");var l=isPanelOpen(),n=0===(document.body.scrollTop||document.documentElement.scrollTop);n||l||!allowExpand?n&&l&&(allowExpand=!0,setPanelState(!1)):(allowExpand=!1,setPanelState(!0))}pencilInit(".js-sub-pencil",!1);

Denis Villeneuve’s film Arrival, Sylvie Simmons’s book I’m Your Man and CBC’s podcast Ideals make the list of Sarah Slean’s current fixations.

Where Olivia Newton-John once got Physical, Sarah Slean is getting metaphysical. Her latest album is Metaphysics, due out this spring and available for preorder at pledgemusic.com. Songs include Cosmic Ballet, a lush existential rumination much different than Newton-John's spandex-based allusions from the the early 1980s. As for what's occupying her mind these days as she puts the finishing touches on her first recording in five years, the singer-songwriter's current fixations run deep, from sci-fi reflections to a lost bard to heavy biocentric ideas.

What she saw: "I think Denis Villeneuve's Arrival is a near-perfect film – a compelling, revealing story about ourselves and our time, told with intelligence and tenderness. It sparks that juicy, wide-lens inner reflection about the nature of things – particularly time, language and being human. I treasure any art that leaves this kind of enduring echo in the mind."

What she read: "I'm Your Man, Sylvie Simmons's 2012 biography of Leonard Cohen, is excellent and exhaustive. I was particularly moved to learn of the beautiful bond Leonard shared with his Buddhist teacher Roshi. It is weirdly comforting to discover that Cohen, who in my world is a spiritual giant, was often just as profoundly lost as the rest of us."

Story continues below advertisement

What she's tuned into: "I've been spending hours painting one-of-a-kind, handmade editions of my new album. For this, podcasts are ideal. CBC's Ideas is my go-to. The range of topics is vast, and the production and interviewing are world class. I particularly loved a recent episode on biocentrism with Robert Lanza, in which he presents a radically new metaphysics – one where life and consciousness are the centre and source of the universe. Whoa. Something in me lights up when science, spirituality and technology overlap."

Report an error Editorial code of conduct
Due to technical reasons, we have temporarily removed commenting from our articles. We hope to have this fixed soon. Thank you for your patience. If you are looking to give feedback on our new site, please send it along to feedback@globeandmail.com. If you want to write a letter to the editor, please forward to letters@globeandmail.com.

Welcome to The Globe and Mail’s comment community. This is a space where subscribers can engage with each other and Globe staff. Non-subscribers can read and sort comments but will not be able to engage with them in any way. Click here to subscribe.

If you would like to write a letter to the editor, please forward it to letters@globeandmail.com. Readers can also interact with The Globe on Facebook and Twitter .

Welcome to The Globe and Mail’s comment community. This is a space where subscribers can engage with each other and Globe staff. Non-subscribers can read and sort comments but will not be able to engage with them in any way. Click here to subscribe.

If you would like to write a letter to the editor, please forward it to letters@globeandmail.com. Readers can also interact with The Globe on Facebook and Twitter .

Welcome to The Globe and Mail’s comment community. This is a space where subscribers can engage with each other and Globe staff.

We aim to create a safe and valuable space for discussion and debate. That means:

  • Treat others as you wish to be treated
  • Criticize ideas, not people
  • Stay on topic
  • Avoid the use of toxic and offensive language
  • Flag bad behaviour

Comments that violate our community guidelines will be removed.

Read our community guidelines here

Discussion loading ...

To view this site properly, enable cookies in your browser. Read our privacy policy to learn more.
How to enable cookies