Thursday, July 31, 2003

Title: Good Bye Lenin!
Cast: Daniel Brühl, Katrin Saß, Chulpan Khamatova, Maria Simon, Florian Lukas, Alexander Beyer, Burghart Klaußner
Director: Wolfgang Becker

the core of this story. a son's love for his mother. regardless of anything that is an absolute truth in this film. alex's and his family live in east germany, the socialist east. his father goes to the west on business and doesn't come back. his mother is left to raise him and his sister, and throws herself into that and supporting the party.

thats fair enough, but alex, and many others are becoming disillusioned with their supposed great nation. just as this is coming to the surface alex's mum has a heart attack, ending up in a coma. during the period she is in the coma germany is transformed. the wall comes down and the country is set on the path to reunification. this done alex's mum comes out of her coma, but the doctors warn that the slightest shock could kill her.

this makes recent events problematical. but to stop his mother from getting any surprises that she shouldn't, he recreates east germany for her as much as possible. which to a point is fine, because she is bed bound. but with requests for food that is no longer being made, and for a TV things become increasingly difficult.

goodbye lenin is an illustration of a paradigm shift. a country that was working one was is transformed in a big step. the wall comes tumbling down, and everything is different. set into that is a human story, with enough of a quirk to really bring home the process that is ocurring. the eye for detail gives the film a depth - from alex's tireless quest for things that make his mum feel at home, to the stark contrasts of him and his girlfriend attending parties in transformed buildings.
yann tiersen supplies the sound track. as with amelie before this his music is striking and compliments the film well. one downside is that there are actually pieces used here which are also particularly prominent in amelie. more new material would have been preferable of course. but his sound really is just so striking, that becomes the main thing really.

goodbye lenin, a classic without a doubt. and a film that really does need to be seen.

antigen shift - implicit structure.
this is one of those albums which really hasn't got as much of a listen as it should. been carrying it around in the daily CD folder for a wee while now. started listening to it on my way home last night, but it seems my headphones have attained a status of fuckedness. which is always frustrating. so only able to hear music in one ear was of course no use. dug out a secondary pair of headphones, one of those sets you actually get with the CD unit, as opposed to the slightly better ones i bought to replace a previous dead pair. and yet, i've digressed, in a way that wasn't really intended. but then headphone status is always relevant!
with the replacement headphones in place i looped through antigen shift one and a half times. i think it fair to say that the sound fits into that whole rhythm noise style. which there has been a lot of flooding the market for a while. a glut which really became too much. has it calmed down now or am i just blocking it out? anyway. from experience this seems like a pretty decent album. the word tribal seems wrong. but in this case it is more appropriate than saying it has a techno influence. something which really does seem to be a little too prominent in a lot of the stuff i have picked up recently.
not to say that techno influences are bad, i can appreciate a techno influence here or there. but generic, repetitive, bangin techno that causes flash backs to the most boring dance floors i've been on, with little relevance to home listening. which leaves me with a point, one would hope, that this antigen shift is decent listening. solid rhythms and beats. not genre re-defining, a desperate concept that seems to be doing the rounds at the moment. but certainly decent.
god knows the genre could be doing with some re-defining, but its been awhile since any of us really heard anything that could honestly get that description. anything else is just hype. here is to the next hybrid and something completely different. amen.

Wednesday, July 30, 2003


in case anyone hasn't been paying attention recently throbbing gristle have announced a one off reunion/celebration of industrial music in the 21st century. this is a big deal. regardless of opinions on throbbing girstle. team induction will certainly be there, especially after the success of our trip to this year's all tomorrows parties at the same location.

for more information:

throbbing gristle - re:tg

mute -re:tg

the line up looks like this so far:

14 May

Coil, Carter Tutti, Black Dice, Lydia Lunch, Alec Empire, Soft Pink, Truth, V V E

15 May

Thee Majesty, Scanner, Richard H. Kirk, Matmos, Mego Tag Team, Daniel Miller DJ, Project Dark, Big Bottom, People Like Us, Jack Sargent

16 May

Throbbing Gristle, PanSonic, Merzbow, Andrew Weatherall DJ, Thighpaulsandra, Jim O'Rourke, Simon Fisher Turner, John Lacey DJ

we caught some of the mego acts at ATP with mixed results, though jim o'rourke's set was certainly better than i expected, so that i quite enjoyed him. coil of course were one of the highlights of ATP, and you have to imagine their presence there was one of the factors of using the same venue.

more commentary as it comes up. but we are looking forward to this, but then any excuse for a road trip is a good excuse!


Tuesday, July 29, 2003

current reading - the comfort zone - jeremy sheldon

about half way through now. verdict so far - its good, most of the stories are enjoyable, only one or two not entirely doing it for me. for the most part good ideas, good humour, well fleshed out.

recent viewing - blue gate crossing; the hulk; black angel

blue gate crossing - showing as part of london lesbian/gay festival on tour, this is the best film i've seen in a while. at the core is a girl who is asked to approach a boy at her school for her best friend. confusion leads the boy to think it is her that like him, but she likes her friend.

the hulk - meandering, dreadfully paced, awful conclusion. generally ang lee disappoints with his adaptation of this classic character. the potential is there. but it just doesn't come through.

black angel - the second of two DVDs i picked up cheap by takashi iishi, gonin was quite disappointing, black angel goes some way to making up for that. the action is much more interesting, and while a little wary of the girl come back for revenge for the deaths of her yakuza family the american/japanese hybrid that is ikko works, especially the aspects of her still being quite girly and naive despite the coming violence!

recent listening: synapscape, this morn' omina, pow[d]er pussy, sense, voks.

synapscape - this remix ep seems disappointing on first listen, none of the harshness that really makes synapscape. we will see how it goes with further listens, but not promising so far.

this morn' omina - lot of material to take in with the two discs plus 3", seems like more of the same with the reasonably recent re-release of previous album. but decent enough.

pow[d]er pussy - 3" collab between TMO and Ah Cama-Sotz. first listen, up beat and promising enough.

sense - new release on u-cover, laid back electronica from australian artist.

voks- 3" release on dekorder, danish quirky pop, i really really like this release, listening to it quite a bit!

Wednesday, July 02, 2003

uhm. lets see. yeah ok. i grabbed my mini disc recorder/player ting this morning. for the record these are soo cool. the most common use i have for it is for allowing me to listen to vinyl on the move. so i grabbed that, and a pile of discs.

so the way to work this morning comprised of the latest loki releases - the herbst 9 12" and the split inade/turbund stumwerk which came out as a follow up to the saturn gnosis box. so a mix of moody dark ambient, slow drums and that kind of thing, to ease me into the day. which worked well. to round the MD off i had the alio die 7" from drone, which complimented the other stuff. i think the way home from work tonight will feature the two recent orphx vinyl releases. chalice is more dubby, but with that sound scape/bit work that orphx are revelling in at the moment. while the other one, which has gone and slipped my mind right now, is remixes from living tissue to some degree, so has more of a connection to that. both good releases though.

while listening to that on the train i finished off "the earthquake bird", which is a relatively short book. under 300 pages. i quite enjoyed it, a review will hopefully be written at some point today. though as i write this i am struck by the thought that it wasn't nearly as shocking an ending as it was made out to be by quotes on the cover. which leads to the question -whatever is?

hmm. something to think about. i'll maybe come back to that. though to be honest two things do come to mind that are shocking. a man fell between carriages of a train at glasgow central on friday night, the low level platform that i use every day. he became stuck, the fire brigade were called in to release him, the train had to be lifted. in the end he lost a leg. thats pretty shocking.

something else that was pointed out to me yesterday - a woman who one a sexual harrasment case for being groped at work got £178,000 award, while a woman who had her daughter murdered by a known paedophile only got £11,000. what a strange world we live in.

which of course is a cheery thought to end this little ramble on isn't it? oh well. just be thankful i didn't include the link to the discussion of pink socks i was reading half an hour ago. woo, that was shocking.

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