Saturday, December 31, 2011

FTRK #66 = "Digital Fractal" by Zomby


Digital Fractal - Zomby (2011)
Digital Fractal by Zomby on Grooveshark

"Digital Fractal", of Zomby's Nothing EP, presents itself as a collected, rhythm based beat. A simple, minimalist collection of hums and arpeggi synth. Rather than being the focus, it acts as the compliment; it's exceptional to listen to in the middle of work yet far from monotone. The track resonates perfectly across the instruments (seemingly Zomby's 'signature') and ultimately is exceptionally well developed.

Further Listening:
Official MySpace
Official Website (4AD)

NWSL #9 = We are OIL Barrage


 The site has finally recieved a splash page.
You can check it out at http://oil-barrage.co.cc .
 We may give the design an overhaul in the future, but we're excited to have it thrown together.

As the buttons show, the site will be expanding into sections for music, film, and videogaming in the future. Devon's posts will be ported over to another Blogspot website, OIL Film (this may change too) and the sites will look significantly tidier. Expect some collaborations, possibly videos or audio recordings in the future.

Lookin' forward to opening this can of worms!

Enjoy the New Year, and thanks for following.
EDIT: Canned the idea.

Saturday, December 24, 2011

Devon #9 = A Christmas Story

I could say that A Christmas story is the best Christmas movie ever made. But this has been said before. I could say that it succeeds because it understands human nature, but I would just be repeating Roger Ebert. I could even just say that the triple dog dare scene makes me laugh every time, but I would just be repeating the third Harold and Kumar. My point is, everyone loves this movie (save this guy), and the point has been made. It is awesome. From the anecdotes of Jean Shepherd, who wrote the original book, and narrates the film, to the many subplots that each offer a very funny payoff, to the charm of each of the tiny, quiet scenes, like the mother and father sitting down on Christmas eve and just watching the snow fall, every element is legendary. More than any of its peers, more than Vacation, or Scrooge, or Charlie Brown (not a fan), this movie has an emotional connection for me. It draws me back into a sense of being a kid, of greed and selfishness offset by innocence and wonder. It's this movie that makes me remember what it feels like to wake up at an ungodly hour screaming for presents, as much as I remember being joyous and happy that Santa had visited. As I grew older, this effect changed. What once made me miss the Christmas of my childhood now makes me excited to give to others. In the end, that's all that is left to discuss about the film, beyond its humor and its colour. All that's left is our own experiences. If you've never seen it, try it out. I wont say it's for everyone, but personally, I believe that it's perfect.

Well, that was oddly sentimental. So here's some strange things about Bob Clark; eleven years after a christmas story he directed a sequel, featuring an all new cast, called It Runs In The Family, or My Summer Story. While many reviewers hated it, entertainment weekly said in their review that it improved on the original.  Clark also help to invent the slasher genre with Black Christmas in 1974. So that's awesome. However, he also directed Porkey's, Baby Geniuses, Superbabies, and my new favorite bad title ever: The Karate Dog, which, sadly, featured the voice of Chevy Chase. Despite all of this, the man was a visionary in horror and still made the best Christmas story ever. Which is pretty damn cool.

Sunday, December 11, 2011

Devon #8 = National Lampoon's Christmas Vacation


"Where do you think you're going? Nobody's leaving. Nobody's walking out on this fun, old-fashioned family Christmas. No, no. We're all in this together. This is a full-blown, four-alarm holiday emergency here. We're gonna press on, and we're gonna have the hap, hap, happiest Christmas since Bing Crosby tap-danced with Danny fucking Kaye. And when Santa squeezes his fat white ass down that chimney tonight, he's gonna find the jolliest bunch of assholes this side of the nuthouse."

And that is my Christmas. Others may have their Charlie Brown Christmas, their Muppet's Christmas Carol, or their Colbert Christmas, The Greatest Gift of All, but for me December is about paying a trip to the Griswolds.

Christmas Vacation was the third movie in a series that focused on stories of columnists hectic childhood holidays from National Lampoon magazine. They all focus on Clark Griswold and his family attempting to have a traditional family vacation, though with a very loose continuity between films. Now, I have a confession: I have never seen the other Vacations. Every year I plan on it, but it just never seems to happen. But frankly, I don't think I need too. Despite how well done they are (mostly) supposed to be, Christmas vacation is an almost perfect holiday movie, and any prequels or sequels might just dilute it.

Everything about the film extrudes nostalgia from the viewer. Even when Clark's hillbilly cousin is emptying a chemical toilet into the sewer, explaining simply "shitter was full", the colors and setting scream classic Christmas. In fact, the whole movie seems to straddle the line between being a raunchy comedy and being a heartwarming family film. The main reason this movie manages to create this glowing feel is because the relationships between every character feel real, whether between siblings, spouses, cousins or in-laws. Despite all the conflict that exists in their home, everyone cares for each other. That's why, when everything goes wrong and Clark starts to lose it, it reaches such hilarity, because we can all imagine just how he feels, and why when everything finally turns out, it's heartwarming. All of this is achieved through some startlingly good writing and acting. This is old Chevy Chase at his best, and it shows. Every moment he is on screen, every moment of happiness, anger, and shock, is leading to one moment, that one perfect moment, when Clark finally gets pushed off the edge. It's mesmerizing, and if you have ever seen this movie, you will know exactly what I'm talking about.

Their are only a few moments that I have problems with here. The scene wherein Clark goes tobogganing with an industrial lubricant plays out like a road runner cartoon. The use of celebrities (and future celebrities) can be distracting. Other than that... Well it's close to being a perfect movie. This is one that I'll watch every year for the rest of my life, and one that i expect to appreciate more every time. The musical cues, the colour, the emotion each actor conveys, the little jokes in the background, it all adds up to one of the best Christmas movies, and even one of the best comedies, ever. If every video rental place within a 1000 miles of me weren't closed, I would tell you to go rent it. And hey, speaking of perfect movies...

Post by Devon, reblogged to correct html.