10 July 2006


Chris's sticks; Zac's pedals.
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Zac.
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Josh.
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Josh, Zac.
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Zac, Lewis.
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Chris.
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Josh, Zac.
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Zac, Chris.
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Lewis, Zac.
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Zac, Chris.
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Iceni, studio. 10/07/06. Zac, Josh.
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22 June 2006

Masterpiece in Monochrome.

My Elvis Blackout
'Back in the Food Chain'
(TR4)

For the reason that pop music and comedy can equally be viewed as throwaway, one may reasonably find an equivalent in the former to what in the latter can be defined as ‘irony fatigue’. Just as the mechanism for humour can become so familiar as to be viewed with jaded objectivity, the similarly limited palette of pop music can become stultifyingly repetitive and uninspiring. Given the recent ceaselessly un-hilarious onslaught of Test Icicles and other such practitioners of post-modern, post-Art Brut Hoxton wank, it may be time for music to do what it tends to do every generation or so: to reduce itself to its foundations of melody and rhythm, cleanse itself of any superfluity, and move forwards afresh.

My Elvis Blackout represent such a programme of reductionism. Their debut E.P. features four songs, each lasting for approximately the perfect length of time, and shorn entirely of any unnecessary fluff; it is a record destined for history via the future by way of your memory, thanks entirely to the sheer brilliance of itself.

In an era of irreversible connectivity, it is refreshing to hear something that sounds like a shot into the passive night sky. This is a self-contained culture exploding in an atmosphere of suffocating homogeneity.


The title track stutters and chants its way into life with an appropriate degree of primordial tribalism, loading the bubblegum simplicity of the refrain ‘When we move the hills, gonna eat what we kill / Gonna kill what we eat when we move into the hills’ with murderous intent. ‘Slingshotting’ is the best song ever to mention Truro, and ups the record’s pace substantially, the listener dragged screaming behind the rhythm section’s irresistible charge.

Then comes the real substance: the rock rattle of Vitamin M.E.B., a clipped, riotous expression of musical primalism, is followed by the searing ‘Scene’, which introduces the notion of hegemony into a pop song in a manner that tramples Green Gartside and every other po-faced indie turd that dared resist the power of the three-minute rock song.

Throughout, singer Harry Pitts hollers with the urgency of Anyone Worth Listening to Ever, and the songs are frenetically corralled into becoming forces of nature by the drumming of Jason Jaworski. The E.P.’s engineering is a wholly efficient and ‘warm’-sounding representation of the band’s aesthetic, though more muscular than their sprightlier, less restrained live performance.

The beauty of M.E.B. is that they at once have complete respect and complete contempt for pop music; they reduce it to its very base, murdering its self-satisfied pomp, and squeeze from it compelling results. This E.P. exhibits depth, rather than width; it is a masterpiece in monochrome.

Links:
www.myelvisblackout.com
www.myspace.com/myelvisblackout

20 June 2006

'Grizzly Man'
(Werner Herzog)

With ‘Grizzly Man’, Herzog realises Truffaut’s impossible future of cinema – a future in which autobiographical, first-person stories are delivered with an objective, artful coldness. At no point in the numerous peaks and troughs of Timothy Treadwell’s unravelling tragicomedic experience does the film trip into the gutter of voyeurism one may expect it to. ‘Grizzly Man’ follows the line walked by similarly pioneering works ‘Capturing the Friedmans’ and ‘Tarnation’, wringing an immersive, fractured – almost Cubist – collage of poeticism from an at times deeply unsympathetic subject.

Iceni.
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17 June 2006


Screaming.
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Iceni.
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Josh foreground.
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Zac, Lewis, Sam.
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Zac, Lewis.
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Two rooms. Josh, Zac, Chris.
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Joshspace.
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Chris, Sam.
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Iceni Icemi. (L-R) Chris, Zac, Sam, Josh, Lewis.
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Josh, Zac. Iceni.
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Josh, Zac.
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Chris.
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Zac, Lewis.
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Josh and Zac. Iceni 2.
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Iceni 2 Zac's feet.
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09 June 2006


Iceni. (L-R) Lewis, Josh, Chris, Zac.
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Iceni.
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Lewis, Zac. Iceni.
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Zac, Lewis. Iceni.
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Chris, Lewis. Iceni.
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Josh versus hideous couch. Iceni.
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Zac, Iceni
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Iceni practice - Josh, Chris, Lewis
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06 June 2006


Bosun's... Friday
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28 May 2006

...

Art is language unconstrained.

Those who seek to make art are those whose expression is hampered by the limitations of conventional language.

Art is the externalisation and diminishment of a vastly superior idea.

Art is an attempt to communicate.

Making art solely for oneself is akin to speaking to oneself aloud.

To be esoteric in art is akin to speaking in technical language.

To be populist in art is akin to speaking in tabloid headlines.

To be naïve in art is to gurgle like a baby.

The movement by an artist toward simpler, more generic codes within a field (e.g. music or literature) is a realisation that in creating art one is communicating. One inevitably moves toward simpler communication.

A movement toward less generic artistic language is a movement toward reclusion and away from communication.

Art, not logic, is the most suitable arena for the working-through of universal metaphysical ‘problems’.

Man’s desire to live in the infinite is a resentment of one’s own mortality.

Art is infinite.

‘Pretentious’ is a word used by someone to describe that which they do not understand, and which threatens them. If one did not know the word ‘the’, one may regard its use as pretentious.

Pretension in the creation of art is impossible, provided the creator knows what they are saying. Pretension can only exist in the viewing of art, in the mind of the viewer.

To regard art in isolation of context is to reflect on nothing.

The cliché ‘I say what I mean, and I mean what I say’ is false. One merely says what one says; meaning is created between the occurrence of that which is said and a third party; the third party interprets this meaning; the creator interprets this interpretation.

Art and life are equally purposeless.


Life is important but unspectacular.

Art is unimportant but spectacular.