Tuesday, July 24, 2007

Have you 'turned on' your FM3 Buddha Machine today?

Two years later, I'm still loving the simplicity of its sonic company when traveling
about town and the absurdity/genius of the '2 steps forward and 4 steps back'
portable audio-applied-technology that is the:

FM3 Buddha Machine

Especially wonderful for its combined part pseudo-Fluxus-portable art-object /
part Hong-Kong convenience store novelty-junk qualities. And the psychological
effect is has on unwitting members of the general public when playing 'concealed'.
Simple and perfect and lo-fi as all get out.


Saturday, July 14, 2007

Francisco Lopez - US Tour : June - July


Sound artist and 'absolute-concrete' composer Francisco Lopez is currently engaged in a multi-city US tour:

Link to Francisco Lopez ".absolute." Site

Rare chance indeed to catch this visceral, perception-altering and sonically-intense composer in a live setting.
In fact, pretty much darn-unmissable in my opinion!

Definitely one of the 'top five' out there in the way of carrying on the traditions of musique concrete and
electro-acoustic electronic musics into new territory. Expect high volumes, surround-sound, pitch-blackness
and blindfolds to accompany his performance... and the after-effect of having your sense of hearing
significantly 'adjusted'.

Sunday, July 8, 2007

Cannes Film Festival + Cinema Miscellanea - Trailers Galore!

After doing some reading on Cannes and getting pretty psyched about new work from a few directors of interest, I did some searching on youtubes and came up with clips/trailers for many of their new films. (The new Wong Kar-Wai being an exception - all signs and material I've seen/read about it are best well forgotten. I'm giving him another 5 years and at least 2 more films to recover. Seek it out at your own peril.) Also, I couldn't find clips for the new Bela Tarr, but I hear the trailer alone is 17 minutes long (yes, I'm joking btw). ...Ok, now onto the good stuff!

Cristian Mungiu "4 Months, 3 Weeks and 2 Days":

Romanian director Cristian Mungiu won the highest award at the fest - The Palme d'Or.
I've read that this ones a pretty brutal/harrowing two hours in the cinema.

Andrey Zvyagintsev "The Banishment":

His previous film "The Return" was my favorite piece of Russian cinema in many years.
I'm looking forward to something new from Zvyagintsev. Nice use of the Arvo Part too.

Naomi Kawase "The Mourning Forest":

Cannes Grand Prix prize winner. Its been very difficult to find any infos on this one in english,
so I'm rather a bit in the dark.

Julien Schnabel "Diving Bell & The Butterfly":

Won Best Director for this biopic based on the memoirs of one Jean-Dominique Bauby.

Alexander Sokurov "Alexandra":

After his series of films about the fall of various historically significant dictators ("Moloch" & "The Sun")
and the inspiring/frustrating experience that was "Russian Ark" he's back with a new drama.

Hou Hsiao-Hsien "The Flight of the Red Balloon":

New short by H.H.H. inspired by you-know-what and somehow doesn't look totally gay.
Though I often am a fan of his films, I'm hesitant on this one based on the particulars.

Carlos Reygadas "Silent Light":

This years Cannes Jury Prize Winner was a tie between this and "Persepolis". Looks to have
some 'god' factor going on... should we be wary?

Marjane Satrapi "Persepolis"

The other Jury Prize winner and an animated one to boot! Directed by Marjane Satrapi none
-other than the author of the comic herself.

Lee Chang-Dong "Secret Sunshine":

Won Best Actress at Cannes. Some prominent Korean art-house actors featured and was reported
as being pretty darn riveting.

Gus Van Sant "Paranoid Park":

I wasn't expecting to care about this film. It won the 60th Anniversary Award at Cannes.
In having seen Christopher Doyle's cinematography, and the soundtrack choices, I'm now

Yoji Yamada "Love & Honor":

After Yamada's last two films in this samurai trilogy ("Twilight Samurai" & "Hidden Blade")
were favorites of mine from each of their respective years. I'm quite looking forward to this one.

Apichatpong Weerasethakul "Syndromes and a Century":

Cyclical, meditative, beautifully shot new one from this unpronounceable-named Thai director.
One of the "New Crowned Hope" films.

Tsai Ming-Liang "I Don't Want to Sleep Alone":

Another nearly-dialog-less film from Tsai punctuated by blasts of music from the urban pan-cultural Malaysian
cityscape. Have I mentioned I like this guys films? What? Like 8 times? Another "New Crowned Hope" film.

Mahamat Saleh Haroun "Dry Season":

Aytipical revenge drama from Chad, Africa. Cinematography and storytelling made this one stand out.
Yep, again from "New Crowned Hope".

The remaining two films in the NCH series have no trailers that I could find online. These are Pan Encina's "Paraguayan Hammock" (which looks/sounds great) and Garin Nugroho's "Opera Jawa" which I saw in SIFF and I kept wanting them to turn up the volume.