Archive for the ‘Zbigniew Herbert’ Category

goSOUNDTRACK: SIGUR RÓS-untitled #1 (Vaka) (single) (2003).

19Sigur Rós lay dormant for a while after their successful tour and then they came out with the album ().  The album tracks were also untitled (although the band did have names for them).  This single was released as a 3″ disc and then as the version I have which has the same four songs and a DVD.

It was called variously “Untitled 1/9” or “Vaka” and it contains 2 or 4 songs.   The first song is “Vaka.”  Song 2 or 2 through 4 are called “Smáskífa” (or (untitled #9)).  It was originally listed as a 12 minute song but has been broken up on both releases as 3 shorter songs:

The first one is a slow mournful section, with Jonsi’s voice manipulated somewhat to make it sound a little creepier than it normally does.   The second part opens with the voice presumably sped up making it even higher pitched than normal.  Then comes the beautiful slow piano. The third part consists of slow, repeated synth notes and ends with what sounds like more of Jonsi’s singing, but slowed down.  It’s not the most inspired song by the band, but it shows them playing around with sounds a bit more.

The official track listing is

  • Untitled (Vaka) 6:43
  • Untitled (Smáskífa 1) 4:38
  • Untitled (Smáskífa 2) 2:47
  • Untitled (Smáskífa 3) 4:22

[READ: December 2, 2013] Go

This is an excellent book for learning about graphic design, whether you are a kid or an adult.  Even though I feel like I know a lot about graphic design, I learned some fundamentals.  Kidd explains not only how but why things work as they do.  And he begins but upending conventions (just look at the cover which should give you pause).

If you don’t know who Chip Kidd is, he is an amazing book jacket designer.  Some of the most beautiful jackets were created by him.  And, even though I’ve been a fan for a while, I didn’t know that he designed the cover for Jurassic Park (and made all of the iconography for the subsequent movies).

He talks about the history of design (from nature to man-made), showing how we learn things from nature and then proceed to produce beautiful things (I enjoyed his quick trip through the highlights of man-made design from the Book of Kells to the Obama logo).

He talks about simple tricks for making designs stand out like using very small or very large pictures, inverting images, using vertical or horizontal lines, and emphasizing light and dark.  [On a purely fun bit of coincidence, he designed the cover for Zbigniew Herbert’s Mr. Cogito.  I just read a review about the book by David Foster Wallace last week].  I also really enjoyed the way he plays with images and dpi. (more…)

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bothfleshSOUNDTRACK: SIGUR RÓS-Von brigði [Recycle Bin] (1998).

recycleAfter releasing their first album, Sigur Rós was approached by Icelandic musicians to remix the album. And thus came Recycle Bin.  I realized too late that I really just don’t like remix albums all that much–they’re mostly just faster drums plopped on top of existing songs.  And such is the case here.  Despite the interesting musical pedigrees of the remixers, there’s nothing anywhere near as interesting as on Von itself.  There are ten tracks, but only 5 songs.

”Syndir Guðs” gets two remixes:

Biogen keeps the bass but adds some more drumlike sounds.

Múm removes the bass, adds some wild drums and trippy textures and reduces the 7 minutes to 5.  It is quite pretty but very far from the original.

“Leit að lífi” gets three remixes

Plasmic takes a spacey 3 minute wordless noodle and turns it into a heavy fast dance song with speedy drums, big bass notes and with spacey sounds.

Thor brings in some fast skittery drums and keeps the spacey sounds (which sound sped up).  And of course bigger bass noises.

Sigur Rós recycle their own song into a dance song by adding funky bass and drums.

“Myrkur” gets two remixes.  the original is a fast-paced groovy track.

Ilo begins it as a spacey non-musical sounding piece.  After two minutes they add a beat of very mechanical-sounding drums.  It’s probably the most interesting remix here.

Dirty-Bix adds big, slow drums.  It keeps the same melody and vocals as the original but totally changes the rhythm and texture of the song, (removing the guitar completely).

The remaining three songs get one remix each.

The original “18 Sekúndur Fyrir Sólarupprás” is 18 seconds of silence.  Curver turns it into “180 Sekúndur Fyrir Sólarupprás” and makes a muffled drum beat and some other samples from the album, I think.  It constantly sounds like it is glitching apart until the end where it practically disintegrates–an interesting remix of silence.

“Hún Jörð” 7 min Hassbræður increases the drums and adds a more buzzsaw guitar sound and makes the vocals stand out a bit more.

“Von” has delicate strings and Jónsi voice.  The remix by Gusgus adds low end bass and drums making it a thumping rather than soaring track.

I prefer the original, but I much prefer their next album to the first one.

[READ: end of October to early November 2013]  original articles that comprise Both Flesh and Not

As I mentioned last week, I decided to compare the articles in Both Flesh and Not with the original publications to see what the differences were.  I had done this before with A Supposedly Fun Thing… and that was interesting and enlightening (about the editing process).

This time around the book has a lot more information than the original articles did.  Although as I come to understand it, the original DFW submitted article is likely what is being printed in the book with all of the editing done by the magazine (presumably with DFW’s approval).  So basically, if you had read the original articles and figured you didn’t need the book, this is what you’re missing.

Quite a lot of the changes are word choice changes (this seems to belie the idea that DFW approved the changes as they are often one word changes).  Most of the changes are dropped footnotes (at least in one article) or whole sections chopped out (in others).

For the most part the changes were that the book version added things that were left out or more likely removed from the article.  If the addition in the book is more than a sentence, I only include the first few words as I assume most readers have the book and can find it for themselves.  The way to read the construct below is that most of the time the first quote is from the original article.  The second quote is how it appears in Both Flesh and Not.  At the end of each bullet, I have put in parentheses the page in BFAN where you’ll find it.  I don’t include the page number of the article.  And when I specifically mention a footnote (FN 1, for example), I am referring to the book as many times the articles drop footnotes and they are not always in sync.

Note: I tried most of the time to put quotes around the text, but man is that labor intensive, so if I forgot, it’s not meant to be anything significant. (more…)

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