Sunday, August 27, 2006

Sonic Sunday: Teach Yourself Piano

Well, last night we were treated to the all-you-can-eat music buffet of Teach Yourself Piano. Not only can you siddle on up to the heaping portions of sweet and sour songs on there freshly minted CD Sweet Waltz, Bitter Waltz but you can listen to bite sized samples on their tasty new website. The house was full but appetites were growling for the main event that was their CD release party. They did not fail to deliver. Sarah's vocals sound better and better every time I hear her and the kick off was spiced up so hot with musical guests that it added that extra tear to that slow pot now set on boil. And even though I have been on a steady diet of T.Y.P. they served up each song with newness and mixed in some surprises. Kevin's instrumental compositions showed off his seasoned musical chops and were one of the highlights of the night for me. But the best was when everyone got on stage and played 'Fabulous' and the hall shrank down to the Atkinson's living room for one of their infamous parties. There would be so much good food and people would just jam away as everyone added in their sound. I guess that is why I associated food with their music. Boil everything down and their music is my comfort food that are good friends and good times. I know I weigh in heavy on the bias scale but it works for Cheney and Haliburton. So sit back in that big Armchair and let that pant botton out as we sing karaoke after filling our faces at the International House of Atkinson.

Wednesday, August 16, 2006

David B.

Just a quick post today as the nervous tick of "getthehelloutsidecuzitssonice" is biting me hairy arse. I thought I would start sharing some of the good books I am reading whilst hanging out on the patio and sipping my Mojito. David B. has been the recent cat in my head chasing that gerbil on the wheel. Babel is the spin-off series from his award winning book Epileptic (buy it now if ya don't have it). The story still revolves around his relationship with his brother and his ailment but now the story wheel squeaks to the rhythm of myth, history and dreams. The larger 'Ignatz' format combined with the dual black and red tone printing fits perfectly now into the series fold. David's storytelling along with his bold graphic style against the red backgrounds show his command of the sequential language as he stands atop this tower of Babel. Here is an excerpt interview with him from the recent Comics Journal and an article from the one and only Bart Beaty from the Comics Reporter. Also, don't forget to check out David's stuff in the MOME anthology!! Great stoof or I should say C'est Bon huh huh huh!!

Tuesday, August 15, 2006

Sonic Sunday on a Tuesday: Tom Waits

Let it be known that this Mule variation is just me as an ignorant ass getting kicked in the throat by the one and only Tom Waits. I know, I know that everyone in the world is a fan of his and that my slow uptake is met with the same old whiskey drenched adjectives and gravel laden lyrics that meander deep into the backwoods. But, I just saw him in concert and I thought it would be interesting to see if there was any animation that captured his scarecrow-like gestures and that distinctive sabulous voice that rumbles and rasps through the cracks of that (wind)pipe. Unfortunately, there is hardly any. The only one that does the trick is this animation by John Lamb and Bruce Lyon in the late 1970's (shown above). "Tom Waits for No One" (via YouTube or download here) is a rotoscoped video that won an Academy award for scientific and technical achievement for Lamb and Lyon. HERE is an excellent write-up and interview with John Lamb about the video and the process. Other than that there is nothing that comes close to harnessing the dark energy of that vocal creation.
However, Tom has composed music for some animated feature films (which will remain ogreless) and a short film by Chris Wedge, Bunny. You can watch it here in it's entirety!! Also, he composed music for that disturbing film about everyone's favorite outside artist, Henry Darger: In the Realms of the Unreal.

Distinctive and untamed is the voice that remains to be Tom Waits but his lyrics and his music will inpire and drown the dreams many. Enjoy.

Monday, August 14, 2006

The Global Student Awards

Here I am peeking from behind the operating room curtain watching all the people in the viewing gallery leave from this botched experiment. But, don't fret as I am still picking at the scab of art and animation and I am working on a new format for this soapbox of mine.
So, here is a few trix to keep you bunnies occupied until the smoke clears. Stash magazine sponsors the annual Global Student Animation awards (last years post). I am not sure if the voting is still on but go and watch the finalists work in the categories of animation, motion design and vfx. Lots of nice student work here to while away these hot summer days.

Pick up those scissors and run don't walk along this biased line of independent animation.