Saturday, December 18, 2004
I've listened to several lately of note:
The one for California Split enhanced my experience of the film considerably, as it includes Altman (who sometimes rambles when alone), Gould, Segal and screenwriter Joseph Walsh, and there's a nice vibe between the 4 of them. And good info, like most of the people you see in the background are Synanon grads or members...
The one for McCabe & Mrs Miller is not as good, but still interesting. Altman and producer David Foster trade off, obviously not in the same room, but it works anyway. Altman claims he intentionally goes for an "R" rating to keep attention-deficit 14 year-olds away.
And though I didn't listen all the way through, the commentaries for Get Carter, Jandek on Corwood, Edward Yang's Yi Yi and the first disc of the Carnivale series seemed worthy. I'm going to watch all of the latter before listening to it because I don't want to know any plot details ahead of time.
On the other hand, the commentary for the new release of Buñuel's L'Age D'Or is by a Buñuel scholar and it sounds like it: the commentary is brief, very informed and dry, with long spaces in between. Read the book instead.
7:00 PM - [Link] - Comments ()
Spell Wavering Shard
The new Akira Rabelais seems to be getting good reviews, and indeed what I've heard of it is very nice
Still haven't heard his album-length remix of the last cut on Avalon Sutra.
6:43 PM - [Link] - Comments ()
Monday, December 13, 2004
Ian Simmons of nth position reviews the release of 2 landmark works of sound art which have never been heard in their entirety: Brian Wilson's Smile and Kurt Schwitters' Ursonate
...I can't help seeing the story about the collapse of Schwitters' mental health during his period of internment as an enemy alien after fleeing to Britain to escape the Nazis during World War II in a different light. He apparently appalled fellow inmates by barking like a dog, causing them to fear for his sanity, having heard some of Ursonate it may have been he was just reciting his work. Either way Ursonate is a piece that still lives today and, like Smile, exists outside time. Both are as fresh and brilliant today as when they were first conceived.[link]Streaming versions (they might be excerpts, I haven't listened) of Jaap Blonk's rendition and others' are available at Ubuweb. There's also a reproduction of the score.
10:34 PM - [Link] - Comments ()
Sunday, December 12, 2004
"Painting all your treasures black..."
Just watched the Jandek on Corwood DVD and it's a hoot -- and now I have to have at least one of his CDs
Before this I'd read about him in Irwin Chusid's landmark book Songs in the Key of Z: The Curious Universe of Outsider Music, and only heard the track on the accompanying CD.
The movie's creators are selling the disc at the site above, which is the best route if you have the bucks. Deep Discount DVD has the best price if you don't. And netflix carries it too -- that's how I found it in fact -- on last week's "New Release" page.
They really did a fine job with this doc, and if you know anything about Jandek you know he's not an easy sell.
Link to Steve Tisue's apparently definitive website in the "Music: Artists" section on the left.
Jandek played his first ever live show in Scotland in October.
As one reviewer put it, Jandek hasn't changed, the times have just moved closer to his reality (I'm paraphrasing).
10:30 PM - [Link] - Comments ()