VotD : Human Planet Web Trailer

First things first, apparently John Hurt is narrating. No David Attenborough. Now, I don’t know Hurt’s voice from Tom Waits’, but I’m willing to bet it cannot beat Attenborough’s. The only two voices that I think even come close are David Suzuki’s, and possibly Ken Watanabe’s (but that’s in a different category, obviously). Ever since, at least ten years ago,  some random person on the phone complimented my voice, I’ve always toyed around with the idea of doing voice work for things – games? cartoons?. Like all of my random, entirely unbaked interests, I would have no idea of where to start. Are there courses? Should I learn to sing? Was that random person actually just losing their hearing and I actually sound like a mule on a megaphone?

Oh, and of course, I wish this BBC series would just exist on DVD already. Or perhaps just skip that step and move it directly into my brain.

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SotD : Laura Veirs – Sleeper in the Valley

 

Lyrics adapted from the poem by the same name by Arthur Rimbaud.

Yet another unexpected offering from deep within the undercity of my iPod. I have no idea how these songs get in here but I definitely like it when they come out.

I’ve recently been lamenting the shortage of albums I enjoy as a whole. New ones, that is. Perhaps I’ve just become more discerning (let’s call it picky) over the years, but it’s an exceedingly rare full-length release that I want to listen to in its entirety. (I am reminded of some piece of internettery involving Sufjan Stevens calling into question the validity of the album format given the changes to the way that music is distributed, purchased, and consumed, but alas, cannot find a link.) Veir’s album is lovely and folky and by turns happy, tragic, haunting, or peppy. Something about this tenth track made it pop out – maybe the mental image of swooning crows; their feathered bellies stuffed to bursting with viscera, emitting rough little sighs and falling back onto tiny fainting couches.

VotD : РАЭ-54 с борта НЭС “Академик Фёдоров”

Or, for those of you whose Cyrillic is a little rusty, “cool timelapse of antarctic expedition”. The generic trance music is not even remotely interesting, but I suppose you wouldn’t want it to even try to upstage the fascinating expedition hijinks that the video features; building a plane, building a pool, going fishing, penguins!

As a complete landlubber, and also as a guy, there’s something about the nautical that’s always held a lot of appeal. I think that in this video, that’s mostly the ship itself, with its industrial paint-job and countless inscrutable tanks and devices and hatches and cables; it feels as though it exists somewhere poorly defined in the middle of the last century. Or maybe that’s just my heavily stereotyped understanding of Russian technology. Regardless, I found the video compelling enough that the whole thing sort of just slid by – how does one earn a post on an antarctic expedition anyway?

SotD: Kylesa – Spiral Shadow

One of the wonders of my superficially ridiculous music acquisition methods are the joys that random can work on my listening. My relationship with a shuffled playlist is strained at best and usually involves me cursing under my breath while hitting ‘skip’ repeatedly. But every now and then it turns up a gem, and this was one such.

A long route-experimental bus ride farther west and farther north than my downtown perambulations ever take me, I was tuning out from the endless sprawl of Toronto proper scrolling by when this song’s bright hook sunk into my unsuspecting ears. I was vaguely familiar with Kylesa’s last album, Static Tensions, but despite their having two (!!) drummers I had never found a track to really curl up in and make myself comfortable. The skittering high-hats, indecipherable (stumbling centre? foresight? what?) lyrics, and the repeated, varied returns to the theme have gotten me to listen to this grower at least a dozen times in the past twenty-four hours. And am doing so right now.

 

Notice: Changing my mind.

Hi all!

I’m looking to gear the blog up again and change format to something simpler, more concrete, and more random. Mostly returning to my original plan to just write a little about something I like every day. It may get perilously nerdy around here, but I’ll do my best to keep the prose as lively as possible so that a wider audience  will maybe, possibly be interested in reading about whatever sparkly minutiae has caught my eye on any given day. I recently gave up on 750words.com but I still figure that regular doses of writing are a good idea. I’m trading volume for focus and here we go.

Am I nuts…

...Or is this something interesting to look at?

Lately I find myself looking at buildings (usually homes) around the city in a new way. So many of the homes downtown have countless additions and renovations; corrections and alterations that have been done over the course of their lives. The style, type, and quality of these additions varies wildly, leaving one guessing at how the life of the building has played out, and of course, looking at the life of any building (especially a private home) is looking at the lives and priorities of its inhabitants.

Which reminds me, I need to put a hold on What Technology Wants at the good ol’ TPL. (oh, good, 85 holds, 0 copies.)

Photo Update (now with fewer photos!)

Apologies on the lack of updates after my longest and most successful series of sequential posts. Things were going fine until it was working time, and boy howdy was it ever. I worked… many days in a row – more hours in two weeks than I usually work in two months. Admittedly, my job is fairly part-time, but it was still a jarring, if fairly pleasant and definitely lucrative, adjustment.

Over the last few days I’ve been able to settle back into my regular schedule, and will be back in the blogging saddle shortly.

In the greater scheme of my nonexistent art photo production career, I’ve hit a series of small crises over the past week but have made it through in one piece. It was a cruciable (crucial crucible?), it turns out. Set aside some of my more outlandish ideas for now and come up with a feasible series. My plan is one quality image a week.

Those, and snapshots taken along the way, will be available here.