Released in a limited edition of ten and freely given away to friends who care for an earful of noise.
Wednesday, January 21, 2015
Saturday, January 17, 2015
The "job" of any serious artist is not to reflect outward realities, but to stay in touch with the essential randomness that precipitates change. It is not about creating an "object" that is merely a mirror of something without being bent by imagination, desire, or impatience. The intrusiveness of doubt is what brings a work of art alive, especially for the artist caught in the process. The idea of some kind of wrongness is to be cherished, else the work tumbles into illustration.
Sunday, January 11, 2015
Liliana Cavani's THE NIGHT PORTER (1974) and Luchino Visconti's THE DAMNED (1969) take up the subject of the SS as seen from an Italian perspective, unflinchingly tempestuous, yet somehow drawn to a fatal eventuality. This is not surprising given Italy's dire flirtation (oh those uniforms!) with fascism and an even more substantial desire to succumb to hedonism in all forms. THE NIGHT PORTER somehow manages to depict the conflicts that arise when juggling duty, desire, destiny, and depravity. Dirk Bogarde (as ex-SS officer Max) and Charlotte Rampling (as Lucia, his prisoner and lover) both previously appeared in THE DAMNED, and give exquisitely moody performances, somehow veering between pleasure and pain, charm and menace. Max is portrays an aristocratic night porter at a Viennese hotel in 1957, albeit one with dark desires and a past to match. Lucia is married to an American conductor whose past found her a concentration camp prisoner/darling, willingly involved in the disturbed pleasures of the SS, and with Max in particular (Rampling's take on Salome seen in flashback is both erotic and shocking). That Italian censors found the film's sex scenes problematic was due to Rampling's top position more than the fleeting nudity and strong violence seems strange to us now, but hardly surprising in 1974. This is a film about submission more than anything else, yet is still a kind of love story whose ending precludes any kind of happiness.
Thursday, January 1, 2015
While I generally try to avoid all-digital dispatches from the 21st century, the OP-1 synthesizer offers an expansive sound shaping experience without one-dimensional presets that can often limit an instrument's potential (envelopes, filters anyone?). When combined with a glorified circuit board called the Oplab the fun really begins as midi information, control voltages and gates can be swapped between various other electronic instruments (in this case my Buchla 200e). That the OP-1 can also function as drum machine, reel to reel tape recorder, mixer, and sampler only makes this instrument more appealing, especially as it so easily interfaces with other trouble makers.
Saturday, December 27, 2014
Art, at its best should provide a kind of transcendence that pushes one beyond a purely physicall experience without calling attention to the journey, else one nervously seeks familiarity, those stepping stones to steady an inevitable trip to nowhere.
Tuesday, December 16, 2014
* THE FRENCH CONNECTION (1971, William Friedkin)
* THE SENTINEL (1977, Michael Winner)
* CRUISING (1980, William Friedkin)
* ALL THAT JAZZ (1979, Bob Fosse)
* EMPIRE (1966, Andy Warhol)
* LAST EXIT TO BROOKLYN (1989, Uli Edel)
* BAD LIEUTENANT (1992, Abel Ferrara)
* NIGHT ON EARTH (1991, Jim Jarmusch)
* YOU KILLED ME FIRST (1985, Richard Kern)
* PARIS IS BURNING (1991, Jennie Livingston)
* MIDNIGHT COWBOY (1969, John Schlesinger)
* MARATHON MAN (1976, John Schlesinger)
* Q: THE WINGED SERPENT (1982, Larry Cohen)
* CHELSEA GIRLS (1966, Andy Warhol)
* ANDY WARHOL'S TRASH (1970, Paul Morrissey)
* ROSEMARY'S BABY (1968, Roman Polanski)
* DO THE RIGHT THING (1989, Spike Lee)
* GOD TOLD ME TO (1976, Larry Cohen)
* SERPICO (1973, Sidney Lumet)
* TAXI DRIVER (1976, Martin Scorsese)