A Belated Happy Birthday to Brian Eno

With his recent 65th birthday, father of ambient/generative generative music has made the ascension into pension. In honor of all he’s created, here’s a sampling of long form interviews and documentaries about the man.

First, here’s an hour long lecture from Moscow in 2011:

Next, his lecture from this year as a part of the Red Bull Music Academy:

Here’s the 1994 German documentary Eno Fur Solo:

I had the pleasure of seeing him speak at Moogfest a few years ago and it was probably one of the highlights of my recent existence…definitely something you should experience if possible.

Without him, this blog would most certainly be called something else. Here’s the proto-MTV video for 1974’s ‘China My China’ off the obviously magnificent Taking Tiger Mountain:

As part of the previously mentioned Red Bull Music Academy, Eno’s audio/visual installation “77 Million Paintings” is on display at 145 W. 32nd St. in NYC through June 2nd.

Sound Art To The Deaf – Christine Sun Kim

This fantastic short explores the unique world of a sound artist who cannot hear. Todd Selby’s film takes us into Christine Sun Kim’s exploration of sound through her own physical translation.

From Nowness.com: Deaf from birth, Kim turned to using sound as a medium during an artist residency in Berlin in 2008, and has since developed a practice of lo-fi experimentation that aims to re-appropriate sound by translating it into movement and vision. “It’s a lot more interesting to explore a medium that I don’t have direct access to and yet has the most direct connection to society at large,” says the artist. “Social norms surrounding sound are so deeply ingrained that, in a sense, our identities cannot be complete without it.” Selby filmed an exclusive performance from Kim in a Brooklyn studio as the artist played with field recordings of the street sounds of her Chinatown neighborhood, feedback and helium balloons, and made “seismic calligraphy” drawings from ink- and powder-drenched quills, nails and cogs dancing across paper to the vibrations of subwoofers beneath.

Check out an interview with Christine Sun Kim on Nowness’s Facebook page.

Thanks to Create Digital Music for the post leading me to this great short film.

Eric & Magill’s Two Travelers EP

ericandmagill

Eric & Magill, creators of the previously loved “You Make It So Good”, have released their equally lush Two Travelers EP. Stream it below and download it for free from their bandcamp. Look for their full length Night Singers coming in late June of this year.

Dum Dum Girls – Coming Down & Yoko Ono’s 1965 Cut Piece

Dum Dum Girls have the destinction of making me tolerate a Smiths song. I had no idea that “There Is A Light That Never Goes Out” was the work of Morrissey and with Dee Dee singing, I can actually stomach it. Anyway, their video for last year’s slow motion stomp “Coming Down” pairs the mournful song with a stark black & white clip featuring an scissor wielding audience.

Take a look at the video’s direct influence: Yoko Ono’s 1965 performance entitled Cut Piece:

Please ignore the music on the youtube video, I’m fairly certain it’s not authentic. As part of Ono’s involvement in the 60’s performance art group Fluxus, she held this audience involvement piece in both Tokyo and then London. Those in attendance were given scissors and instructed to cut away her clothing until naked. The staging and concept are directly translated into the video for “Coming Down”.

Rhythm0

Echoes of this performance can be seen in Marina Abramović’s 1974 performance piece Rhythm 0, which gave the audience a much wider range of tools and a more intimidating leeway to do whatever they pleased.

Regardless of influence, it’s always great to see the threads of video & performance art bubbling up in contemporary music videos.

Tennis – “My Better Self”

The lovely video from Tennis is a Lynch-ian, color soaked performance piece. I never know if I’m a full-on fan of Tennis, but this video is charming as hell, in a perfectly weird way.

Bonus link: a live version of “My Better Self” shot at The Earth House Collective for the possibly defunct Laundro Matinee. The live version comes off less polished and the lack of reverb makes it sound a little less like Beach House.