Ten years ago today saw the English launch of a quirky Japanese puzzler, a sleeper hit
that would go down as one of the most endearing, original, and gleefully weird
gaming stories of the 2000s: Katamari Damacy
Its fever-dream plot has the record-scratching, Freddie Mercury-esque King of All Cosmos
destroy the stars in a drunken fugue, and you, the diminutive Prince, must restore them with the Katamari -- a magical sticky ball that snowballs through cluttered environments
, rolling up paperclips, flowerpots, cows, buses, houses, skyscrapers, and continents into new constellations.
It also boasts one of the most infectiously joyous soundtracks of all time
-- an eccentric, richly produced
, and incredibly catchy blend of funk
, bossa nova
, experimental electronica
, bamboo flute
, hair metal
, buoyant parade music
, soaring children's choirs
, Macintalk fanfares
, and the finest theme song this side of Super Mario Bros
Called a consumerist critique
by sculptor-turned-developer Keita Takahashi
(who after one sequel
moved on to Glitch
, the supremely odd Noby Noby Boy
, and playground design
), the series has inspired much celebration
] on its way from budget bin to MoMA exhibit
. Look inside for essays, artwork, comics, lyrics, more music, hopes, dreams... my, the internet really is full of things. [more inside]
Jim Henson's colorful animation of jazz drummer Chico Hamilton's
piece, "Drums West".
Musician Charles Cohen
) hosts a workshop at Berlin's Schneidersladen
the use of the rare and recently re-released Buchla Music Easel
Her Noise - The Making Of (2007) -
running time ~60 minutes. The video documents the development of Her Noise between 2001 and 2005 and features interviews with artists including Diamanda Galas, Lydia Lunch, Kim Gordon, Jutta Koether, Peaches, Marina Rosenfeld, Kembra Pfhaler, Chicks On Speed, Else Marie Pade, Kaffe Matthews, Emma Hedditch, Christina Kubisch and the show's curators, Lina Dzuverovic and Anne Hilde Neset. The documentary also features excerpts from live performances held during Her Noise by Kim Gordon, Jutta Koether and Jenny Hoyston (Erase Errata), Christina Carter, Heather Leigh Murray, Ana Da Silva (The Raincoats), Spider And The Webs, Partyline, Marina Rosenfeld's 'Emotional Orchestra' at Tate Modern, and footage compiled for the 'Men in Experimental Music' video made during the development of the Her Noise project by the curators and Kim Gordon, featuring Thurston Moore and Jim O'Rourke. [more inside]
Lana Del Rey: Why a Death-Obsessed Pop Siren Is Perfect for Late-Stage Capitalist America
(mirrored at Salon.com
Lana Del Rey is pushing the envelope, and here's her message, delivered with a languid pout: 21st-century America is a rotting corpse, deadlocked culturally, economically, and politically. Since there's nothing we can do about it, let's enjoy ourselves as the body-politic disintegrates, perhaps by savoring some toothsome bites of the past: candy-colored Super 8 films, juicy jazz tunes and clips of sultry screen sirens. The future is a retrospective.
All of this echoes the ancient danse macabre, the dance of death, the motif that sprang out of the medieval horrors of war and the plague. It's a plea for fevered amusement while you've still got time.
is a bizarre slice of the 1980s in a browser. Strange old clips of 80s movies combined with 80s synth music and a lovely pastel palette make for a good time.
: the inner workings of a vintage black and white photobooth in real time. Via photobooth.net
, the most comprehensive photobooth resource on the internet (previously
Christian Zander may have a commercial design background
, he has a significant amount of work in a more abstract, generative style, as seen in his House and Bike blog posts
, and strewn among his work portfolio
. He has also worked with animations, both live (Kiss Kiss Kiss - "Ponte 25"
) and recorded (Kenton Slash Demon - "Ore"
/ I Got You On Tape - "Run From The Rain"
Walter Kitundu is an artist and MacArthur Fellow (previously
). In this video
, he gives a lecture at the San Francisco Exploratorium about his bespoke instruments and lighting experiments. At around 16 minutes
in, he plays his digital revision of a kora
The Nordic Society for Invention & Discovery
has brought never-before-seen and totally exclusive technologies into the world, such as the Aaltopuck
(an ice hockey puck modeled after Alvar Aalto's Savoy Vase
), the Flower Shell
(a shotgun shell that shoots seeds into the ground
), the Wall of Sound
(an 8000-watt iPod dock
) and No More Woof
(a device that wraps around your dog's head and translates his or her brain waves to computerized speech
The Delian Mode (Kara Blake, 2009)
- A 25-minute documentary about composer and pioneering electronic musician Delia Derbyshire
, perhaps most familiar to Mefites for writing the theme song for "Doctor Who".
and Overstepping Artifacts
are music videos by the project Musicians with Guns, which take the viewer through detailed tours of some beauty. Relax and enjoy.
"[We] were looking at Hieronymus Bosch’s painting The Garden of Earthly Delights
and discovered, much to our amusement, music written upon the posterior of one of the many tortured denizens of the rightmost panel of the painting which is intended to represent Hell. I decided to transcribe it into modern notation, assuming the second line of the staff is C, as is common for chants of this era.
" via Dangerous Minds
What Does Pussy Riot Mean Now?
"With all eyes on Russia, two members of the country’s most notorious band of shit-stirrers are free after nearly two years of political imprisonment and enjoying the rock-star treatment during their first trip to the U.S. But the group’s unlikely journey from art-school project to international icons shows just how rotten Russia has become and how much the mission has changed."
If Jesus and company were around today, the Bible may look like a art & fandom Tumblr project
, complete with meta essays
, and playlists
. Their writers aim to "follow in the Judeo-Christian tradition of questioning, evolving, and shaking up the status quo in order to update scripture for a secular audience, offering it up as a volatile mix of narrative, social commentary, spirituality, and punk rock."
In this version Jesus is a cat-loving activist
, Mary Madgalene is a hijabi punk
, and the mystics are spoken word artists, musicians, and bloggers
If it weren't for the 1976 Copyright Act, copyright on work would expire after 56 years - which would have meant that Kerouac's On The Road, the original 12 Angry Men, and Elvis's All Shook Up would be public domain by today.
Sofles - Limitless
, Graffiti + Timelapse (SLYT) previous
The NFL's Modern Man: How Philadelphia Eagles linebacker Connor Barwin — a bike-riding, socially conscious, Animal Collective–loving hipster — is redefining what it means to be a football player.
Love's Secret Ascension: Coil, Coltrane & The 70th Birthday Of LSD.
"Author and new Quietus writer Peter Bebergal celebrates the original synthesis of LSD with a thoughtful look at acid and transcendent, magickal music." [Via Technoccult] [more inside]
A Robot Train That Lets You Write Music With Magic Markers
: "... much of Suzuki's work
focuses on new ways to visualize music. Looks Like Music is his new project, an alternative to standardized Western musical notation synesthetic enough for even dyslexics to understand. Even cooler? It's music notation done with robots." [more inside]
is an application of BioGraph
-based data mining to music, which helps you get recommendations for other musicians. Based on 140K user-defined tags from last.fm
that are collected for over 400K artists, results are sorted by the "nearest" or most probable matches for your artist of interest (algorithm described here
). [more inside]
I am not really quite sure how to describe the website MELT
except to warn you to prepare to be away for a very long time. (NSFW).
Incorporating works of artists
(Be sure to scroll down) both surreal
and so much more.
Probably the best way to get around is to just click on the various labels.
The sound of silence
- Research by Dr. Chia-Jung Tsay published in PNAS
suggests that top musicians are judged as much for the visual aspects of their performances, as much as for the aural ones, regardless of the experience level of the listener or judge
When the Andean exotica singer Yma Sumac
became famous in the United States for her supposed Inca heritage and five-octave voice, her fellow Peruvians called her a sellout. UC Davis professor Zoila Mendoza, however, knew Yma Sumac as her mother’s childhood friend
The Smiths Poster Exhibition
is at BarcelonaNQ
until August 31, 2013. It features art
from the personal collection of obsessive Smiths
fan Marc Capella
. The Guardian has a slideshow of some of the more famous pieces
Janelle Monae's latest music video/single is a 60s-esque, funkadelic, symbol-heavy, all-white fur and all-female hammer to the head - THE DANCE APOCALYPTIC
50,000 years of Western music in under 500 seconds:
A video of artist Pablo Morales de los Rios
creating one of those whiteboard-n'-marker style accelerated drawings spanning ~500 centuries of the stuff that soothes a savage breast. (Spanish, with English subtitles. Warning: may not contain all the things.)
"It's just one of those days where you wake up thinking that if you jazzed up Stravinsky's Owl And The Pussycat it'd be awesome..."
[SLYT] [more inside]
"So many people think they can improve the situation or collaborate. I think that's very wishful thinking in this political structure. It makes people not very conscious of what's happening," he said
Held once every four years, the 14th Van Cliburn International Piano Competition
is being livecast
. Running from May 24th to June 9th, performers — some of the best young pianists in the world — are currently in the preliminary round.
Tackling everything from Abba to the Velvet Underground, Brian Eno reveals his insights into popular music in this 81 minute talk at a music academy
sponsored by a popular sugar-and-caffeine-infused drink
. [more inside]
Great artists rise early
, stay up late
, float themselves in coffee
, flirt with amphetamines
, drink carefully
, eat if necessary
, take morning walks
followed by afternoon naps
, amuse themselves
, avoid their friends
, hold down jobs
, indulge their oddities
, and work
— work like draft horses
. [more inside]
“When I was doing my Post-Doc at UCL I used to go to the British Museum to relax, and work in the beautiful library there, so I chose the space for the mix. I wanted to capture the ambient atmosphere in the central courtyard, so I did some binaural recording to include in the mix. I also wanted to make the mix something of an exploration through history and ideas in line with the contents of the museum, so I brought in lots of disparate music spanning the centuries and continents. I also mixed it in a way to be like a journey though the museum, turning corners and regularly coming across something totally different and unexpected, with each track being like a different exhibit. Hence the name of the mix, in that, each piece of music almost has a visual content.”
-- Max Cooper & The British Museum [more inside]
After years of silence, enigmatic programmer/musician/surrealist why the lucky stiff
is publishing to the web again (temporarily
). Five days ago he released a number of short collages
; today, his site is outputting a number of stories and essays, which are being collected in several Scribd repositories
. _why writes about a strange old Oprah show
starring guests who've removed themselves from society [parts 2 3 4 5 6]
, discussing M. Night Shyamalan's The Happening with a friend [2 3 4 5 6]
, and suffering a personal crisis after reading the complete works of Kafka [2 3 4 5 6 7]
. (One final story, "Dentist", has been uploaded to a public Dropbox account [2 3 4 5 6 7 8]
.) There's also this somewhat ominous web site
. [more inside]
The Trans 100
is a list curated by We Happy Trans
based on nominations of 100 key trans people breaking ground in American culture, arts, social justice, and politics. [more inside]
You keep doing your work, because you have to, because it's your calling... one does their work for the people. And the more people you can touch, the more wonderful it is...
Patti Smith's Advice to the young [more inside]