Archive for January 2006

1.24.06

The Duke Spirit

Leila Moss is the latest addition to my females who rock club, and so I’ve been meaning to blog about The Duke Spirit. (I just noticed they’re playing at SXSW.)

The band caught my eye when I read that Simon Raymonde of the Cocteau Twins helped produce their debut album, Cuts Across The Land (import.) Upon watching their video for the title track, I formed an instant crush on Moss, the strutting, tomboyish blonde who looks a cross between Nico and La Femme Nikita, (la Peta Wilson version.)

Moss is being compared to PJ Harvey, Patti Smith, Karen O, and Mazzy Star, but personally, the way her voice rises up from the gut on tracks like “Darling, You’re Mean” and “Stubborn Stitches,” reminds me of a young Grace Slick. (And, I concur with Kristin at at scenepointblank who notes she occasionally channels Ian Astbury!) That said, Leila certainly has that sumthin’ sumthin’ all her own.

Download: Cuts Across The Land
Watch their videos for Cuts Across The Land and Lion Rip on their website.

*Album out March 7, 2006.

Posted at 3pm on 1/24/06 | 3 comments | Filed Under: female voices, music | read on

1.22.06

Fame, glamour, ego, politics, money, war, love… and dance

Cinematical posts a glowing review of the Sundance screening of Ballet Russes, a documentary I’ve so been looking forward to!!

Here’s part of the Zetigeist Films synopsis:

“Unearthing a treasure trove of archival footage, filmmakers Dan Geller and Dayna Goldfine have fashioned a dazzlingly entrancing ode to the revolutionary twentieth-century dance troupe known as the Ballets Russes. What began as a group of Russian refugees who never danced in Russia became not one but two rival dance troupes who fought the infamous “ballet battles” that consumed London society before World War II.

Posted at 5pm on 1/22/06 | no comments; | Filed Under: documentaries | read on

1.20.06

The Rich Girls Are Weeping will satisfy your disco glitterlust with these two remixes of the best dance tracks of last year.

Goldfrapp: Ooh La La (Phones remix)
Madonna: Sorry (Pet Shop Boys Maxi remix)

*Vintage Allison photo from the Black Cherry era. (Do you think Britt from Spoon listens to Goldfrapp?)

Posted at 8pm on 1/20/06 | 2 comments | Filed Under: female voices, music | read on

1.20.06

<3's

I predict heart-shaped sunglasses will make a comeback.

Posted at 11am on 1/20/06 | 2 comments | Filed Under: female voices | read on

1.19.06

Film + Music = Love

A couple of weeks ago, Docopenhagen posted the top 25 indie music videos of 2005. I combed through this stash for hours, the most music videos I’ve watched in one sitting since 1987 via MTV.

Now there’s another music video list making the rounds, painfully curated by Derek at Good Weather For Air Strikes. This list is even better because there are twice the videos (granted many not indie), and they’re downloadable, some even iPod compatible. I also particularly like Derek’s taste. He kicks off the list with three outstanding videos, including the stunning video for “Glosoli” by Sigur Ros, one of my top 10 songs of the year, and one of the most beautifully shot (and conceived) videos of all time.

The pleasant surprise for me was the realization that music videos are not defunct. Even more, they’re relevant! In fact, many of last year’s videos are testament to music video as art form rather than simply a marketing tool. It also dispels my pet peeve that videos usually suck when the artist is not the vocal point. I hereby make an amendment to said pet peeve: If you have access to an amazing & talented director, then by all means, exclude the band and bring on the mini-cinematic experience.

The relevancy of these videos inspires me. It’s an exciting time for the marriage of music and film. Just as the Internet breathed new life into the music video, the video iPod is sure to inspire all manner of music/film related projects. Hmmmm?

Posted at 2pm on 1/19/06 | no comments; | Filed Under: music | read on

1.16.06

I’m in the midst of a hot n’ heavy Siouxsie phase this month.

Silence is a Rhythm Too informs us that S&B’s first album, The Scream (1978), was remastered and released on a two-disc reissue, but alas, only available in the UK at present.

Listen to Hong Kong Gardens – so retro it sounds modern again.

Posted at 11pm on 1/16/06 | no comments; | Filed Under: female voices, music | read on

1.10.06

Take pride in your poster


Best movie poster of the year goes to V for Vendetta. I bet these win all sorts of design awards. Watch the new international trailer. (via Cinematical)

Worst Poster of the Year Award goes to — Rumor Has It. Here you have a movie with a decent concept, a great cast, and a semi-funny trailer. Instead of something edgy that plays with the iconic image/era from The Graduate, we get this airbrushed shot of Jen A that looks like a Lifetime TV movie ad.

And, you ever notice how the American versions of movie posters and book covers (as well as mag covers and fashion editorials) are watered down compared to their foreign counterparts? Why is that?

Examples of stellar movie posters:
Dead Man
Dolls
Out of Sight
Walk The Line
Drugstore Cowboy
Amelie or Amelie

Posted at 6pm on 1/10/06 | no comments; | Filed Under: art & artists, film | read on

1.5.06

Tiny Showcase


“A Boy With Wings” by Deth Sun

3 cheers for the folks at Tiny Showcase who came up with an idea enabling artists to sell artwork at prices the average art enthusiast can afford — the same “price as a CD, book or record.” Every week, Tiny chooses a small piece of art to be reproduced (on fancy German etching paper), and offers a limited number of prints for a mere pittance. They even had a Twelve Days of Tiny Showcase Print Collection for Winter 2005. Tiny prints sell out quick, so check back early and often, or join their mailing list for ample warning.

A few months ago they sold a tiny piece by Catia Chien, an artist introduced to me by Kate (who might commission her to illustrate a children’s book.) Cool side note about Catia, you can commission her to create a painting based on your word of choice. Example, Crochet:

Posted at 1am on 1/5/06 | no comments; | Filed Under: art & artists | read on

1.2.06

Wanted

Two books showcasing the comprehensive work of two brilliant artists:

ALONG THE LINES OF GUILLAUME AZOULAY

THE COMPLETE PRINTS OF YOSHITAKA AMANO

*This nice blogger has posted some pics from inside the Azoulay book.

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Posted at 10pm on 1/2/06 | no comments; | Filed Under: art & artists, books & writing | read on

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