Friday, February 22, 2008
I know it probably seems like I only write about three bands/artists on this thing but I swear it's not like that. Anyway, if you still think the latest Hot Chip record isn't making it to your iPod, I plead for one last chance. If you're still not sold then I just can't help you. (And to the choir: see you in April.)
Wednesday, February 13, 2008
Above: Kanye West’s new video, “Flashing Lights.” It was co-directed by West and Spike Jonze, who directed Being John Malcovich but got his real start directing music videos like Weezer’s “Buddy Holly” and Wax’s “California.”
At the Grammy’s last Sunday, West described the award ceremony as his “home.” And even though he participated in the Sept. 11 showdown with 50 Cent over Billboard supremacy, it’s West’s artistic vision that matters most (West is a 10-time Grammy Award winner, and might be the only artist who would post this picture in his blog.)
West has released three albums and been nominated for three Album of the Year awards. But make no mistake – the rapper/producer applies a similar “make the best work possible” mentality to all he does – even his music videos. While other MCs have attempted to change the formula of video making (low-budget YouTube videos for half the track list), West remains true to his personality. The “Flashing Lights” video is no exception.
When I first hit play on the video, I was disappointed by its length (2:47) in comparison to the album version (3:58). After I watched the video, my feelings changed. There’s an eerie tone to the clip – the censored gasoline, the darkness of the shot, the woman’s attire. It becomes clear that this video was not made for 106 & Park (case in point: the star isn’t shown until 1:45). Jonze shot the video in one take, which isn’t new but as The Fader pointed out, he seems to be the one who does it the best. At 2:15, the camera pans away from West’s scared face to show the lovely woman grabbing a shovel. The graceful movement of the camera to show West’s (assumed) murder proves that West and Jonze are unafraid of the avant garde. It is refreshing to be reminded that some artists put their integrity over their SoundScan numbers. I couldn’t be more pleased.
On an unrelated note: if you find soulful Englishmen to be more your speed, allow me to direct you to my recent review of Hot Chip's Made in the Dark. Is it a shameless plug if it's in my own blog?
Tuesday, February 05, 2008
But my computer is, at least for now. Expect regular updates to resume as soon as I get it back. In the meantime, pick up the new Hot Chip record, Made in the Dark, which is in stores now. Or you can do what I did and purchase the CD/DVD edition. You can read my review of the album next Tuesday when The Review begins its Spring publication schedule.
I leave you with this:
I leave you with this: