one day everyone will figure me out.
Missed this when it happened, maybe you did too. Apparently someone did the right thing and promptly turned it into an internet meme. Thank you, America. Read the full story here. In later news, apparently she’s gone the way of the barefoot bandit. So long, 15 minutes.
DirtyDirt2 is finally available. As always, handmade covers, no two are the same. Hand-numbered first edition in a limited run of 50 copies only. Get yours NOW because over half of them are already spoken for. Big thanks to Colin Hatch for helping with finishing touches.
Contact email@example.com to get yours in the mail. Thanks!
Hooray, it’s new media Tuesday. Every Tuesday [that we remember], Dd will present new works we recommend you see/hear/read/play, open for discussion and critiques by our friends and audience members. To contribute to the conversation, just email thoughts to firstname.lastname@example.org, and I’ll edit this post to reflect valid points.
FILM: Banksy’s new film, Exit Through the Gift Shop, was interesting, and I think, a great little documentary, maybe even an important one. I’ve seen enough graffiti flicks and done enough bombing runs to know how insane people can get to post up pieces in the best spots, and I was nervous the film was going to be another shaky-cam blast through major cities, like a “Yeah, I totally did that,” visual list that played through like a skateboard video. And surely enough, the first half of the film was in line with my expectations. I’m fine by that, I appreciate watching prolific artists taking risks and doing crazy shit, I just didn’t want to pay $10 to see it once.
Thankfully, the film evolved shortly thereafter, eventually presenting a half-serious contemporary cross-section of “the new art world,” which warns of the dangers of hypebeasts, poseurs, and the slightly retarded. Another work to once again beg the questions, what is real art, who is allowed to make it, and what is the real value? Reflecting later, the message still rings out, but out there in the business of cool, the work is stained with Banksy’s public rebuttal. The film is a statement, almost an apology, removing himself from further association with the film’s daft protagonist, who makes a series of serious mistakes in a scene where your success is based on street credit.
The lasting impression of the work comes off as a few artists just trying to clear their names and reputations to an audience, potentially unreceptive or indifferent, aside from committed street-art bloggers and photographers who know where the beef is. Aside from that singular gripe, I definitely recommend seeing it if you make your own work, or at least like talking about other people’s.
MUSIC: Listening to the new Gorillaz album, Plastic Beach. Way more poppy than the last effort, but still tinted with that classic Gorillaz vibe. I played it all day, and once I started writing a quick review of it, I realized there was a lot more to be heard than could be found quickly. Compared to previous albums, Plastic Beach is markedly more relaxed, chill, maybe even slower, but never sluggish or lazy. Self-produced by frontman Damon Albarn, the record plays through like an Ambien trip, bits of drowsy and disorienting sounds punctuated by moments of sheer joy; sounds vibrant clear and enlightening. With an impressive list of coconspirators (Lou Reed, Mos Def, Snoop Dogg, De La Soul, The National Orchestra For Arabic Music, among others), the tracks all have their high and low bits; in energy, richness, and digestibility.
Standout tracks include the single Stylo, which plays like a nightrider-esque dream sequence journey to the center of hell, with Mos Def’s filtered deadpan diatribe (maybe invoking a little Kool Keith) balanced with an angelic Bobby Womack belting the high notes to save the day. This single won’t get out of my goddamn head. Critics are talking about Womack’s vocals on the track as the “standout point of exuberance” against a subdued vibe, but there’s plenty of high-spirited euphoria later on.
One track earlier, Rhinestone Eyes evokes a one-too-many kind of night at a discotheque, a slow start with Albarn’s woozy vocals and machine drums, later swirling through bright and sometimes abrasive synthesizers. Superfast Jellyfish is a 2:55 druggy, vocoder-laced saturday morning cartoon commercial, with chopped and screwed De La Soul staccato and an eerily cheerful chorus; quickly becoming one of my favorite tracks on the record. The title track presents Mick Jones and Paul Simonon of The Clash in a heavily layered studio binge that sounds like it was made with cartons of late night cigarettes and split guitar strings, from the subtle shredding in the song’s start, layers upon layers of kitschy synths, chaos pads and pitch-shifting vocal tracks, to the abrupt but warranted ending.
There is a lot to be heard in this album, so unless you want to feel drunk without drinking a drop, break out the headphones to catch the well-hidden production details and moments of joy hidden between dizzy lounge keys and despondent crooning. Overall a great listen, more so the second time around. A ton of extra content on the deluxe edition album too, including a making-of DVD (just like with Demon Days) that unlocks downloads and even a Plastic Beach game on the website. I got the regular album, assuming the extras wouldn’t be worth the extra 11 dollars. Anyone get the deluxe edition?
That’s all for this New Media Tuesday. If you’ve got something you want me to critique, send it! I’ll be honest.