Monday, April 24, 2017

On tour

Thoughts:

The question of whether it's right to play Israel is a personal decision for the artist. Roger Waters and Thurston Moore, among others, have made a decision not to do so as a means of protest, and you have to respect that decision.

Radiohead have the right to make a different choice. There's a case for cultural engagement across national lines. And of course the audiences they'd be playing for wouldn't necessarily be made up of supporters of Netanyahu and his policies.

It might be in their best interest to address the matter before going through with the trip, though. Explain their thinking. Like it or not a kind of political engagement is part of their identity now. They've got a huge left-leaning fanbase. This matter isn't just going to go away.

Saturday, April 22, 2017

Bedlam



For whatever reason I was thinking of One Flew Over the Cuckoo's Nest today. Why did it have such an impact? The movie feels very real. Cinéma vérité style realism isn't the only way to go, of course, but it the context of Hollywood at the time it was new and fresh. The camera finds the action, the source of conflict in the scene, of course. But its view is unsettled, as if it were another person in the room not quite sure where to look.

Casting enhanced this feeling. Jack Nicholson was the only actor anywhere near being a star. Louise Fletcher had done a lot of TV guest roles, but very few films up to that point. A few supporting roles were filled by non-actors.

Seen above, Christopher Lloyd was experienced onstage, not much known outside of it. It's different now, and strange seeing him as a borderline abusive mental patient. Also, it's weird to see him with such short hair, especially in the seventies.

Thursday, April 20, 2017

A tale of one storefront

Something curious is happening on Thayer St in Providence.

Around the end of last year, Au Bon Pain went out of business. Not the whole company, just the Thayer St. location. I wasn't sure why, although I had my theories. Someone who worked at another location in Providence said the landlord had raised the rent and they just didn't think it was worth paying. This is a thing that happens.

The storefront stayed empty for a few weeks, gathering graffiti. Then the windows were covered in black paint and promotional material for By Chloe. By Chloe is a vegan restaurant chain headquartered in New York. Me? Not a vegan. I don't eat that much meat, but I don't have any great ambition of cutting it out completely, and dairy is life to me. But it seemed like this could be a good way to make sure commerce continues to flow in that spot. Also I suspected that if ABP had left because of the rent the landlord had these other tenants lined up ahead of time.

But much time has passed since then. By Chloe hasn't opened for business. In fact, I haven't seen construction people or outfitters at work on the place either. It's just sort of been taking up space. So have the new renters had second thoughts about moving in? Or did they only secure the spot so they could perform Satanic rituals in the wee hours of morning?

Tuesday, April 18, 2017

Of the vanities

Arden las penas. from Angie Guerrero on Vimeo.

An interesting, slightly macabre, and also a bit touching stop motion film from Colombia. The title translates to "the pains burn."

Sunday, April 16, 2017

April 16, 2017

This was, indeed, Easter. In both the Western churches and the Orthodox ones, I read.

It's also a few weeks into spring. When the weather gets warmer people get rambunctious, bursting out of their shells more. That's not really my thing, but okay.

Today while waiting for the bus I saw a convoy of motorcyclists. One guy reared up like he was on a horse. Actually I'm not sure I'd call it a bike. It seemed to have four wheels.

Friday, April 14, 2017

POV

Gran Canaria - Fotografias estenopeicas Guillaume Roumeguere - Batteria Alejandro Ramos from Guillaume AIR on Vimeo.

Some eerie and interesting pinhole images taken in Spain's Canary Islands, accompanied with groovy drum-heavy jazz.

Wednesday, April 12, 2017

There are a surprising number of coulrophobes in the world

I've recently started to read Stephen King's IT, after it/It came up in conversation. It's a long novel, which a lot of King's books are. But it has a particular approach to being a long novel. It's made up of chapters and sub-chapters which in many cases could stand on their own, and which initially appear to be disparate.

I'm still in the first quarter, and I have to say I'm impressed with how sparingly the monster, Pennywise the Clown has been used. There've just been a couple of appearances. What the reader sees is the effect that Pennywise, or at least the supernatural evil he represents, has on the adults who came in contact with him when they were kids.

I haven't seen the miniseries, but Tim Curry does seem like ace casting.