Friday, April 30, 2010
"Our photography, our combined vision." Hmm... Pretty interesting. Durban photographers Kevin Goss-Ross and Xavier Boris Vahed have joined forces for combined photographic project Our. Keep up with their experiments on Facebook.
Friday, April 23, 2010
Woh, old news to some, but God damn, this sounds interesting. Exit Through the Gift Shop (awesome name, by the way) is a new street art documentary focusing, mainly, on legendary UK street vigilante Banksy (well, kind of). Started as a work of love by Mr. Brainwash (aka Thierry Guetta), a French immigrant living in LA, the film took on a life of its own when Banksy got involved, finding its way to the Sundance Film Festival this January. But the interesting dynamic is, through the film, dabbling film-maker Guetta takes up street art and Banksy tries his hand at film-making. Naturally, Banksy's face is never shown and his voice has been distorted to protect his anonymity. Exit through the Gift Shop is premiering all through America this April and May.
Thursday, April 22, 2010
So critically acclaimed cult director (and Jackass creator) Spike Jonze is reliving his childhood. First came his 2009 remake of the Maurice Sendak classic Where the Wild Things Are. Now he's having a go at Shel Silverstein's The Giving Tree - this time totally re-imagined (or Jonze-ified) as I'm Here: A Love Story In An Absolut World.
Jonze's imagination, oddball sincerity, moody tone and epic music selection runs wild, and the story of the giving tree and the taking little boy has been reinvented as a boxhead love story between two robots (and one of them's a giver). I'm not sure how Absolut Vodka's involved. Corporate sponsor maybe?
Watch the full 30 minute short here.
© Dave Bullock
After their blistering Coachella appearance, Die Antwoord sat down with Boing Boing writer (and number one fan) Xeni Jardin for an exclusive video interview. Check out the result:
Die Antwoord Zeflings - Fansite
Tuesday, April 20, 2010
Joan Jett, Cherie Currie, Kristen Stewart, Dakota Fanning
Joan Jett, Cherie Currie
The Runaways (circa 1970)
Can you believe it, Kristen Stewart's (Twilight) playing Joan Jett, Dakota Fanning's (I Am Sam) playing Cherie Currie and The Runaways (the movie) hits cinemas worldwide this April/May. For those who don't know, The Runaways were the first all-girl punk band on Planet Rock. And for those who don't care, they were HOT! Put together in 1975 by Jett, drummer Sandy West and producer Kim Fowley, The Runaways were the very definition of jail-bait: vocalist Currie was only 15 when she joined (West was 16 and Jett was 17).
Seeing Stewart and Fanning standing next to Jett and Currie at the premiere, it's striking how squeaky clean, edgeless and boring the two young actresses look in comparison. Maybe they should have gone for two less blockbuster stars with a bit more spunk and character? Oh well, check out the trailer: opinion pending...
Monday, April 19, 2010
It’s All Coming Down
Paper + Plastick/No Idea
I love Spanish Gamble’s press release: “We’ve all been at the end of our ropes before. That precarious tipping point where you’re not sure whether everything’s going to work itself out, or whether you’re going to end up as a deranged 30-something basement screamer chewing on the business end of a broken bottle.”
In 2006, then known as Dirty Money, Spanish Gamble packed up and left the deserts of New Mexico, heading for Gainesville, Florida – the Mecca of DIY punk rock – like beards to a flannel shirt. It’s All Coming Down is their first release as Spanish Gamble.
At their best, Spanish Gamble sound a LOT like Hot Water Music. Track eight "Can I Live?" is one of my favourites and it sounds like a full-blown Hot Water Music b-side. In parts, Spanish Gamble sound like a band in transit. Still finding their footing in Planet Punk. Their own signature sound.
“And I don’t know what keeps me going anymore. There must be something that I’m missing. Is it you?”
The production’s got a DIY sound (especially following the new Flatliners and Leatherface) that a lot of punk fans prefer. But often, the drums (snare and kick especially) don’t hit hard enough, the vocals don’t pack that breathy, lightning bolt presence and the songs don’t hit your upper spine the way they should.
For fans of Hot Water Music, Off With Their Heads, American Steel and, say, Dear Landlord, It’s All Coming Down’s a fun melodic punk-rock trip with jaded, gravelly narration – this time courtesy of oblivion-chasing Colin Shane. There are a lot of highlights and fans of the genre will love it like a nice piece of flannel, but there’s often something missing: that tight, consistent spark that makes their idols so damn idolisable.
Right now, Spanish Gamble are tearing their way across America. Then it’s on to Europe. By the end of the year, they’ll have a few more stories to tell, Shane will have developed his own, unique voice and I’m sure we’ll hear all about it. I bet their live show’s intense already – especially in a basement.
Oh yeah, the artwork, by Craig Horky, is awesome!
More Craig Horky.
Spanish Gamble on MySpace
Paper + Plastick
No Idea Records
"Ho$h! Yo yo Zeflings worldwide! Die Antwoord did their first really big overseas gig at Coachella this weekend!" - Die Antwoord.
So the legend of futuristik South African rap rave entity Die Antwoord continues to grow. This weekend, Ninja, Yo-Landi and DJ Hi-Tek performed for 75,000 festival goers in Coachella Valley, California. And by all accounts, they brought that next level shit to the party.
Check out this video of Die Antwoord playing "Enter the Ninja" live at Coachella:
More pics of Die Antwoord at Coachella: Dieantwoordzeflings.com
Die Antwoord on Torenveda
Official website: Coachella.com
Thursday, April 15, 2010
"Eighteen months after the fall of the last human city, the war against the Locust rages on. Meanwhile, deep beneath the surface, a fearsome new threat is infecting the planet from within. With survivors scattered and civilization in ruins, time is running out for Marcus and his comrades as they fight to save the human race."
Official Gears of War site
Fat Wreck Chords
"Itemise your life in a panicked state so you can sleep at night and dream about never turning old and grey."
I was sceptical at first – it seemed too clean. But Canadian punk rockers The Flatliners soon won me over with thoughtful, blood-soaked lyrics from the road, singer Chris Cresswell’s unique, ever-improving raspiness and drummer Paul Ramirez' non-stop sense of urgency. And it doesn't hurt that the album sounds insane! Just like their 2007 Fat Wreck debut, The Great Awake, The Flatliners recorded Cavalcade back home in Toronto, at Drive Studios.
Mostly, the guitars are smooth and simple - with feeling. The songs tick along thanks to Ramirez’ subtle wizardry, Cresswell’s gritty, all-heart vocals, and bassist Jon Darbey’s charging bursts forward. Ramirez is a slave driver, the tempos are perfect: fast and driving.
But as good as Cavalcade sounds so far, out comes a song like “Here Comes Treble" - they were only cruising. With its epic anthem-like intro, its fast, punk rock intensity and Cresswell’s notes-from-the-road words to his family and friends, it takes your breath away.
"Now listen father, I need to tell you all I've learned from you is written on my face as I drive round the world in disgrace. Does the telephone ring? Can't wait to show you what a jaded fuck I've become."
"I'll waste my life and never make up the time. Are you still happy to see my pale face?"
Even when they slow down, nobody does a mellow, dirty ska song quite like The Flatliners. Slow, simple guitars, meaty, power-ska drums and Cresswell screaming his lungs dry. “He Was a Jazzman,” Cavalcade’s lone ska-punk representative, builds steadily to a powerful, eye-scraping end.
Cavalcade really peaks after that. “Monumental” is a gang vocal-powered, epic slower one that never loses its edge. "Sleep Your Life Away" keeps the momentum going, ending with the line, “I think that’s the worst thing I’ve ever heard. How marvelous," from the The Princess Bride (1987). And then “New Year’s Resolution” bursts faster than anything else so far, ending Cavalcade with a bang, Cresswell's steadily bubbling heart boiling over and burning a hole in his throat.
order Cavalcade from Fat Wreck Chords
The Making of Cavalcade Part 1:
Wednesday, April 14, 2010
I know it's old news by now, but God damn! How good is God of War 3? I just kicked Zeus' ass from here to Mount Olympus, and he didn't even see it coming. In a lot of ways, as always, the story's an extremely bloody and pretty straightforward third-person hack through Ancient Greece. But the thing that separates God of War from rivals like Dante's Inferno, Bayonetta and Devil May Cry is its bombastic sense of epicness, its engaging personality and its sheer scale: from memorably towering villains, landscapes and cinematics, to Kratos' unparalleled brutality and the idea that you're building a legend. The guy's a God killer...
When I look at my dangerously leaning tower of games, titles like John Woo's Stranglehold, Batman: Arkham Asylum, Gears of War, Brütal Legend and GTA: The Ballad of Gay Tony bring back the fondest memories. Memories of a few intense nights spent addicted to clocking them. And now God of War 3 joins the ranks. It's kind of sad really, that it's all over. Boo-hoo!
The story picks up where God of War 2 left off, with Kratos riding Earth Titan Gaia up Mount Olympus, hell-bent on killing dear old dad Zeus. When he gets there, after a quick battle with Poseidon (and a crazy part horse, part spider, part water creature), Zeus blasts Gaia with a lightning bolt and sends Kratos tumbling down to the Underworld. To make things worse Kratos is stripped of his powers and weapons by the lost souls swimming around the River Styx. Using Pandora's Box - and committing multiple deicide along the way - the rest of the game turns into an epic revenge quest to get back at Zeus and fulfill Kratos' lustful Oedipal complex.
The puzzles are just about simple enough to make you feel really smart when you finally crack them, especially working your way through the Labyrinth. But the boss battles are what God of War 3 is all about. Looking back, one villain stands out decapitated head and sliced up shoulders above the rest: Hades (above). What a character. Most memorable God of War 3 boss battle by far. Other memorable battles include the three headed Cerebus Breeder (spent about three, hand-cramping hours on that bastard), the bludgeoning of Kratos' brother Hercules (it's quite an incestuous place, Ancient Greece), and the scenicly gargantuan takedown of Cronos.
Overall, the game's surprisingly long. I tore through it but it seemed to go on forever - which is great. According to the experts, the file size is a staggering 35GB, which makes God of War 3 one of the biggest console games ever made. And according to game director Stig Asmussen, it was meant to be even longer. "It was too big and it wasn't as tight as it could possibly be. We had to cut some things out, just to make sure that we got the quality across the board," Asmussen told gaming website Destructoid.com. He went on to describe a cut boss named Argus with "a hundred eyes," who you were meant to kill using the decapitated head-come-torch of sun God Helios. Expansion pack anyone?
Judging by the figures, I'm not the only one freaking out. At the end of week one, God of War 3 had sold more than a million copies worldwide (400,000 more than its predecessor). And in total, the God of War series has now sold a titanic 11.5 million units. That's crazy! Critical reception-wise, God of War 3 currently has a 93% aggregate (based on 95 critic reviews) on review megasite metacritic.com (and a fan rating of 83% - based on 1092 votes). Long may the legend of Kratos continue...
On a side note, don't you think it's a bit weird that Microsoft's biggest exclusive title is called Gears of War and Sony's is God of War. Spooky...
Saturday, April 10, 2010
When Kurt Cobain wrote "Rape Me" in 1993 he had no idea it would come to this. Rumour has it that 23 year old Twilight star Robert Pattinson is all set to play Cobain in a new film about the late Nirvana singer's life. Apparently, Cobain's widow Courtney Love's on-board, as long as she has final say on EVERYTHING. So how good could it be, right? And guess who's being mentioned to play Courtney: Scarlett Johansson! As if. Who's gonna play Dave Grohl then, Shia LaBeouf? God, I hope not...
For the sake of humankind we can only hope this turns out to be bullshit. Meanwhile, here's a look at the real Kurt Cobain:
Famous Nirvana Stoned Interview:
Cobain Punched By Bouncer:
Backstage at Reading in '92:
Cobain Discussing Music Videos:
Kurt Cobain interviewed in '93:
Cobain On Suicide:
Nirvana Interviewed on Headbanger's Ball in '91:
Cobain Interviewed in Brazil in '93:
Kurt Cobain vs. Pearl Jam:
Wednesday, April 7, 2010
Out with the old and in with the next level shit, Splashy Fen was buzzing with the name Jack Parow. Or maybe it was all that Monster Energy Drink coursing through people’s veins. Either way, Parow’s “Cooler As Ekke” video’s been viewed 414,376 times on YouTube and according to Splashy Fen HQ, he pulled the biggest crowd of the weekend.
I caught up with the “original donker dodgy Afrikaans rapper” in the media tent to discuss Parow-mania, Die Antwoord and Inge Beckmann’s leather pants.
So how are you enjoying life as a famous rapper?
Quite lekker. Crazy. I’m not used to it yet. It’s fokken weird yo, but it’s still cool.
Been shot or stabbed yet?
Er… No. When I was younger ja, I got stabbed in my leg.
Been involved in any bar brawls?
Fucking thousands hey. When I was younger I got fucked up a lot yo, ‘cos I was obviously common and kak. I’m not a very good fighter, so I always lose.
And what about an entourage?
I’m trying to get one but I’m not cool enough. People don’t want to hang out with me.
So you’re currently auditioning?
Ja, I’m doing some auditioning. One of these days I’ll get some big okes to hang out with me. My manager’s quite big, quite scary.
And what’s with the cap, are you over compensating?
Ha ha… Under compensating. No, fuck it. I always wear a cap, so we were like it’s boring just wearing a normal cap. It’s like a kind of a parallelogram type of vibe.
When’s the album due out?
21st of April yo.
Why the delay?
We just wanna get it fucking better. It’s fucking good now, but we just wanna put some extra stuff on there.
And then you’re hitting Europe?
Ja, I’ve got a bunch of different labels, like eight or nine, contacting me, from Europe, the US and Australia… So I’m still sorting out where to go and stuff. As soon as that’s banged down I’ll be touring Europe, Australia, New Zealand, Japan, China, Norway, Poland and the US probably as well.
What was it like having Inge Beckmann wiggling around in leather pants in your music video?
It’s quite fun hey, especially dancing around her while she’s doing it.
Whose Opel is that in the video?
My friend John’s. I don’t have a car so I couldn’t use mine.
And what cellphone do you really roll with?
Samsung – piece of shit. It’s actually kakker than a 3310. I lose phones the whole time. My friend gave me one now, actually, that’s quite cool. Like one that has a camera and stuff.
Have you seen that homemade Jack Bellville video on YouTube?
No. What’s that?
This guy on YouTube, Jack Bellville…
And he tunes me kak? Ha ha… I must check it out.
What’s better, 8 Mile or Cool As Ice?
I think if Vanilla Ice made a movie now it would be kak, but Cool As Ice, right now, it’s fucking next level. “Drop that zero and get with a hero,” and all those one-liners bru, it’s fucking next level shit. And he still had that fucking heavy jacket with that Vanilla Ice haircut and a fucking Kawasaki ninja on the cover and shit. Poes mooi bra. 8 Mile’s too gangster. It had too many fucking headliners.
Have you seen that Vanilla Ice Castle Lite ad?
Ja, it’s quite cool. I like it when he goes out and they take a sip and he comes back in again. Ha ha…
Did you get to meet him when he was here?
No, that would have been quite fun. But he’s all fucking heavy metal now and shit.
So who are all these so-called copycat Afrikaans rappers?
Everyone. All the Afrikaans rappers in the world, except me.
Did your YouTube, MySpace and Facebook accounts spike when Die Antwoord blew up?
It definitely made a bit of a difference but it spiked before that. The video was at about 200,000 just before they blew up, now it’s about 380,000.
And have you heard from them lately?
Ja ja ja… DJ Hi-Tek makes my tracks on my album as well. I record by him and everything.
What’s Jack Parow’s best-kept secret?
I live with my mom and I don’t have a car. That’s how kak I am.
And what’s the rudest line in your repertoire?
I had a song but I don’t do it anymore ‘cos it’s too rough. My previous style was much more dirty, fucked up and rough.
Like ’99, 2000, when Waddy was doing MaxNormal.TV. He asked me if I wanna come rap some Afrikaans shit on MaxNormal.TV. We kind of started Die Antwoord together. It was gonna me, Yo-Landi and Waddy. But I’ve been rapping in crews so long…
What’s the most ridiculous thing you’ve ever read or heard about yourself in the media?
I had one but I can’t remember, I’m too hungover. There’s this one girl, News In New York is her name, or some thing like that. She says my room is super clean and I’m actually this fucking good guy… I am a good guy, but she says I’m all fucking rich kid and shit. And my room is never fucking clean.
Did you really grow up in a caravan park?
Pretty much hey. I moved around a lot.
Who’s your ultimate rap hero?
Snoop Dogg, motherfucker. Aweh!