Filed under: Architecture, art, Ideas, Music, Uncategorized | Tags: Animation, Architecture, Experience, Music, Sea and Cake, Sound and Vision, Video
Here at tirado/thrown, we heartily anticipate the end of the winter. With the clear light and the cold air, we’re slowly attempting to shed the frozen snow that stubbornly sticks to the ground here in Boston (but not before the upcoming Agamben post, though).
The Sea and Cake’s cover of David Bowie’s “Sound and Vision” is the perfect song for this time of year. They take on Bowie with a blast of cold Chicago air and fashion a tempered interpretation that does not threaten the original version’s excitement and buoyancy.
In an issue of loud paper a number of years ago, The Sea and Cake’s lead singer Sam Prekop professed his love for the work of Mies Van Der Rohe. Lines, glass, light, and steel, Van Der Rohe’s architecture trades in the very basic terms of experience and dwelling.
It’s not entirely surprising then, that the video above marshals high-modern experimental animation to offer a visual expereince well-coordinated with a song that is about experience, broadly conceived: wonder, awakening, anticipation, becoming alive, the senses sparkening and opening to the world. The above video is vitalism wrapped in the guise of a collected, though vibrant, formalism. Here’s to ushering the end of Winter.
UPDATE: A far better version of the video is up on Pitchfork.tv, which I recommend over the video I posted above.
Filed under: art, Music, Rock, Video | Tags: Jamaica Plain, Neptune, Rock, Video, Zea Barker
Neptune is more than just a local favorite at tirado/thrown. Yes, the band’s record, Gong Lake was the subject of one the firsts posts on this blog. But Neptune more than just represent Jamaica Plain, the neighborhood this publication calls home. They are ceaseless laborers and innovators, entirely committed to their craft of making music with the instruments they create: equal parts luthiers, drum makers, metal smiths, sculptors, creators of things from found and unwanted objects, circuit benders, and songwriters. Neptune are heralds of a present time perpetually displaced and deferred, though already here.
Performed and produced by multi-disciplinarian Zea Barker, the video for Neptune’s Grey Shallows is a piece documenting effort, motion, position, and gesture suddenly seized and frustrated within the confines of limited space. An easy visual analogy for an existence trapped inside a cubicle? That would be one way to approach the video, but a little too easy and practical a metaphor.
Another way to consider the video is through the use of the scenery’s limited space, which conditions and binds Barker’s movements and frames her exertions. Her movements are alternately manic and elegant, frenetic and graceful, energetic and exhausted. All the while, Neptune’s track moves along, suddenly setting itself at a humming idle to seek out the next direction to carry its sound. From there the verse acts as a means for the song to measure where it stands in the field of sound. The chorus offers a temporary resolution by propelling the song out of boredom and stasis.
What seems to matter most is the dynamism dwelling between the opposite poles of activity and manner represented in vision and sound. With Grey Shallows, Barker and Neptune summon a thoroughly tactile, and at times uneasy, relationship with the environments they dwell in, making something out of what is otherwise seen as nothing or useless, with marvelous results.
Filed under: Politics | Tags: Al-Jazeera, Journalism, Presidential Debates, Presidential Electoral Politics, Race, Racism, Video
After watching this evening’s increasingly onerous debate and catching the end of a nailbiting and disappointing tie between Mexico and Canada in World Cup Qualifying, the above video landed in my reader, courtesy of the best post-Chicano blog this side of high culture: Ken Burns Hates Mexicans.
Reportage such as this from (ostensibly terrorist-loving, dontcha’ know…) Al-Jazeera English only makes John McCain’s example-as-digression (search for “Lewis”) concerning Georgia Rep. John Lewis’s comments on the recently racialized and paranoid tenor of McCain/Palin rallies and the respective campaigns’ responses worth re-evaluating. When you’re noticing the kind of speech openly making the rounds and carrying currency at these events and the rather earnest concern on the part of the last interviewee, Rep. Lewis’s remarks actually ring more true upon review. This is so in spite of both the McCain campaign’s falsely humble attempts to play the Congress member’s remarks up as a variety of liberal race-baiting and the Obama campaign’s overly-cautious desire to downplay and discredit nearly anything that could be remotely construed as controversial and seemingly anti-American. It should give us pause to consider our population’s information consumption and (more importantly) analysis habits.