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Messages - Bill Binkelman

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101
Bill- I think I did point Barry in your direction, long long ago.  And Mike- you wrote Barry around the time you wrote to me- Barry and I talked shortly after, and he asked me "what's up with this Hypnos label?" and I said that it was run by a pretty level headed, ego-free guy who appeared to be in it for the long term.  I remember Barry stating, dryly, "then he'll never last in the music business!"  :) I talked with Barry not terribly long ago, he was pretty excited about the (then) unreleased cd with Loren, but spent a lot of time asking about my wife and kids, wondering how it was possible that I was now the parent of a teen-ager.  I always appreciated how Barry was interested in, and willing to talk about, things other than music.

LOL! That does indeed sound like Barry! He had such a wickedly dry sense of humor. And yeah, he and I bemoaned the lack of serious attention ambient music got and how screwed up some things were. I thought I had found a real soulmate when it came to ranting at times! LOL! Yeah, I remember, Jeff, that I got in touch with you prior to my W and W days...I think you and Tim (Story) were the first artists I ever showed my "fan boy" side to back then. At some point Barry emailed me as a "Jeff Pearce" referral, I think...or maybe you told me about this great artist A Produce. I don't recall if I bought Land of a Thousand Trances from Lloyd or from Stu at Dark Star in Milwaukee. I think it was Lloyd (and I bought The Hidden Rift at Stu's store on Milwaukee's East Side. Man, the past we all shared. I so wish we could all be together tonight to raise a glass to Barry, a la the ending scene in Waking Ned Devine....(sigh).

102
I've already written some responses on Facebook, but I must say this is terribly sad news for me. Barry and I got to know each other quite well over MANY long distance phone calls shortly after I started up Wind and Wire in 1997. Barry was extremely supportive (as were you, Mike, and Jeff, too). I remember Barry telling me "It's easy, Bill, for someone to publish one or two issues...but if you can make it to 6 or 8 or 10, THEN people will start taking you seriously." His passion for music was just as engaging and contagious. The first album of his I got was Land of a Thousand Trances and MANY times I have stated that it is as essential an album as exists in ambient music. I think it was Jeff who put I and Barry in contact at first. If so, thanks, Jeff.  I interviewed Barry for issue 4 and, if Mike approves, I can find the interview and maybe post it here somehow. And yes, Mike, the photo was the cover image I used for that issue. As important and visionary as Barry was as an artist, he was also one of the nicest people in this business. That he helped me, who was a total unknown and a naive babe in the woods at the time, was a testament to his generous spirit. He had a great sense of humor and was a genuinely kind person. The world at large has lost a wonderful human being and the ambient community has lost one of it's pioneers and artistic geniuses (IMO, Barry was a real original). Safe passage to the next level, Barry. We will all miss you something fierce.

103
Everything and Nothing / Re: Happy Birthday - Bill Binkelman!
« on: August 18, 2011, 02:18:04 PM »
Thanks, everyone...and especially to John for spreading the word. I turned 57 today. I appreciate the kind words...I don't even have anything remotely cynical or curmudgeonly to say! I am sincerely and deeply touched.  :D


104
Other Ambient (and related) Music / Re: Recent music purchases
« on: July 24, 2011, 05:52:56 PM »
Steve Roach/ Erik Wollo - The Road Eternal
Thom Brennan - Signals In Moonlight
Deepspace - The Glittering Domain
Matt Borghi - Huronic Minor

There's a classic from the past!

105
just noticed this!
is this the actual cover or not? feels a bit retro for nowadays but most probably intentional with this re-release :)

http://www.amazon.com/Quiet-Music-Original-3-Hour-Collection/dp/B0059YX84M/ref=sr_1_cc_2?ie=UTF8&qid=1310212639&sr=1-2-catcorr

The original release of CD (at least the one I own) features the MIDDLE one of those three pictures. Color scheme of the rest of the cover is also identical to the original.

106
Everything and Nothing / Re: Special Editions
« on: July 07, 2011, 09:39:01 AM »
Kraftwerk's The Catalogue

Extremely COOL and numerous images were snipped to preserve bandwidth


WANT!!!!!!

107
Everything and Nothing / Re: What do you love?
« on: July 07, 2011, 09:36:22 AM »
Pinball.

My childrens' laughter.

Good food, preferably with decent wine.

And ambient.

Nice to see some of us are still kickin' it old school!

108
Everything and Nothing / Re: What do you love?
« on: July 01, 2011, 01:51:36 PM »
What do I love?

Just about every kind of seafood imaginable....fish (fried, grilled, baked, broiled), shellfish, you name it. Freshwater, ocean, no difference. On our trip to Grand Marais, MN last weekend, we had whitefish (grilled and fried), crab cakes, scallops, lake trout, and grouper.

Cheese...hard, soft, aged, goat, cow, makes no difference.

Fall...I LOVE the gray skies and crisp days of autumn as well its cool nights.

I love the sound of rain or waves or wind in the trees, as well as the sound of crickets, frogs, and other nocturnal creatures.

I love George Webb Hamburger Parlor (based in Southern Wisconsin) hashbrowns...simply the finest I have ever sampled anywhere...and that covers a lot of territory.

Driving rural backroads through small towns, especially in Wisconsin in the fall.

That's not all I love, but it's a start.

109
Hi Julian,

I recognize your name from somewhere else...maybe a ning group? Anyway, welcome to a great forum, full of nice folks who actually want to discuss music....a wonder in this day and age, IMO.  ;)

110
Art and Literature, Movies and TV / Re: For fantasy fans...
« on: May 18, 2011, 11:25:44 AM »
So Bill, what is your take on this series now that it's around half way done. Anyone else care to comment?

I am generally quite pleased with it thus far, especially given the monumental task of trying to bring such a complex story with at least 20 (maybe more like 30-40) IMPORTANT characters to the mini-series format.

Casting is amazing...not a single actor/actress was miscast and ALL the performances are spot on with how the characters are portrayed in the book. Especially good are the actors/actresses who play Jon Snow, Ned Stark, Cersei Lannister, Tyrion Lannister, Jaime Lannister, Geoffrey Lannister, Caitlyn Stark, Viserys Targaryen, Arya Stark, Sansa Stark, and Lyssa Aryn. In particular, all the "villains" are superb!

Sets are equally good, although you can tell the budget is small because you don't get the sensation of how big things are supposed to be (except "The Wall"). Costuming, weapons, etc. are all on a par with LOTR, from my perspective.

Music is "fine" meaning it is not bad but nothing has stood out yet, either.

The main problem, if you want to call it that, is that even at a 12-part mini-series, if one has read the book(s), one realizes how truncated the mini-series is (and has to be). Much backstory is left out and characters are introduced with little exposition, despite these characters being vitally important to the story. Given the constraints that a TV series must have, I am MUCH MORE than satisfied and am glad they are leaving the "tone" of the story as dismal, pessimistic, and cruel as the book(s) are.

Kathryn (my partner), who is a medieval studies scholar, praises the series for depicting how things really were at that stage of human history what with families turning against each other, alliances shifting daily, betrayal and violence being commonplace and anyone not of noble birth was pretty much fucked no matter what. She usually finds depictions of medieval kingdoms to be “whitewashed” but this is accurate from her perspective. One day a person is favored by the king and the next day, he or she could be be-headed.

Still, I don’t see how anyone who has not read at least the first book can be following this, unless they watched each episode 2 or 3 times. I think the producers should introduce each episode with the cast (the ones who appear in that particular episode) by showing the picture (in costume) and who they are playing, e.g. “Sean Bean as Ned Stark, Hand of the King” “Lean Headley as Queen Cersei Lannister” etc. That would help newbies keep all the players straight.

To give you an idea who many characters you HAVE to keep straight due to their importance to the story, go here
http://www.hbo.com/game-of-thrones/index.html#/game-of-thrones/cast-and-crew/index.html
cause nearly everyone on this page is relevant to the storyline, at least in the upper part of the web page (the upper part lists 19 characters alone).

So, all in all, I am very pleased and am VERY HAPPY that HBO has already committed to a second season. Once all the necessary exposition and introduction of characters is done, the action picks up, to say the least, and the real murder and mayhem begins. Woot!


111
I just want to extend my congratulations to you, Darren, on seeing this through to the end. I have thought often of writing a book and have never even attempted it. Kudos to you on persevering and taking it all the way. You are to be commended!

112
Art and Literature, Movies and TV / Re: For fantasy fans...
« on: April 17, 2011, 07:18:52 PM »
I am impressed with the first installment in this mini-series. Understandably, the first 2 or 3 episodes will be more or less exposition. But the attention to detail and deliberate pace are just what I was hoping for...this is a DENSELY plotted book and even at 10 hours, some of it is obviously going to be truncated. I don't expect for it to become truly "involving" until episode 3 or so, although Kathryn is already hooked, per her own words. All I can say is that by the half way point of the 10 parts, if you stick with it, it's gonna blow some folks away. NO character is safe. Imagine in LOTR if Aragorn, Sam and Legolas were all killed in the first picture. That's what this book series is about.

113
I truly don't understand the hatred and vitriol for Facebook. I certainly find some people's overuse of it a bit puzzling, but what harm does it do to you if you don't participate? Why mock it if you can instead choose simply to ignore it? What is the point of posting sarcastic and demeaning comments about a system that allows people to connect with others who, for whatever reason, they enjoy doing so? If it's mundane and vapid and banal, what difference does it it make to you if you aren't forced to read or participate? Just like this forum...god knows there is enough mental masturbation taking place here as well, to be honest.

Honestly...there are plenty of folks on Facebook that make me scratch my head and ask "Do they have a life?" but who the hell am I to judge them? Don't like Facebook..fine, leave it alone. I would say that 9/10 of the time I could dispense with it altogether, but just recently, Facebook enabled me to find out that a good friend and former co-worker of mine had to put his beloved dog to sleep so that when I saw him next in person I could give him a big hug and tell him how sorry I was. IMO, that's enough justification of a system that, by and large, may be nothing but a lot of "look at me" shit.

Sorry for the rant, but honestly...shit, there are more more important things to get worked up about, IMO...gas in the US is about to hit 4 bucks a gallon...fuck that, IMO.

No offense meant, by the way...but...oh what the hell...

??

The only person who expressed hatred and vitriol was the author who's message Mike posted. The rest of of us just made comments along the lines that there is too much empty blather on facebook. That's hardly "hatred and vitriol".

Maybe hatred and vitriol were over the top on my part, but read all the comments here in this thread and there is plenty of slagging off going on...which is fine. As I posted, I don't get it. It's (FB) innocuous because one doesn't have to participate. It's not pervasive. Sorry if my post was off-putting, but while I could cut and paste the specific comments in this thread I was addressing, I will just say that some comments to me smack of the same condescending attitude which creeps into conversations about ambient music here and elsewhere sometimes...the attitude that ambient music is special and above other forms of music...

I'm touchy about this, I admit it. I'm no huge proponent of FB but I use it as do some others on this forum...but whether it's just the author who was quoted or some of the other subtly snide comments afterwards...it just rubs me wrong. If FB makes some people happy and doesn't harm anyone, it's all cool with me.

Again, my apologies for offending you, Joe, as I seem to have done or anyone else. This is one of the one of the reasons that I drift in and out of here and elsewhere on the 'net, I guess. I still haven't learned to keep my (virtual) mouth shut.

Peace, out.

114
I truly don't understand the hatred and vitriol for Facebook. I certainly find some people's overuse of it a bit puzzling, but what harm does it do to you if you don't participate? Why mock it if you can instead choose simply to ignore it? What is the point of posting sarcastic and demeaning comments about a system that allows people to connect with others who, for whatever reason, they enjoy doing so? If it's mundane and vapid and banal, what difference does it it make to you if you aren't forced to read or participate? Just like this forum...god knows there is enough mental masturbation taking place here as well, to be honest.

Honestly...there are plenty of folks on Facebook that make me scratch my head and ask "Do they have a life?" but who the hell am I to judge them? Don't like Facebook..fine, leave it alone. I would say that 9/10 of the time I could dispense with it altogether, but just recently, Facebook enabled me to find out that a good friend and former co-worker of mine had to put his beloved dog to sleep so that when I saw him next in person I could give him a big hug and tell him how sorry I was. IMO, that's enough justification of a system that, by and large, may be nothing but a lot of "look at me" shit.

Sorry for the rant, but honestly...shit, there are more more important things to get worked up about, IMO...gas in the US is about to hit 4 bucks a gallon...fuck that, IMO.

No offense meant, by the way...but...oh what the hell...

115
Art and Literature, Movies and TV / For fantasy fans...
« on: April 06, 2011, 06:30:35 PM »
In case you don't know, HBO has produced a 10-part miniseries of the first book of George R.R. Martin's fantastic "A Song of Fire and Ice" series. The first book (and first miniseries) is "A Game of Thrones." and it looks fucking fantastic and is garnering rave advanced reviews. It starts in about 10 days or so. I got HBO just to see it. This is VERY ADULT fantasy and makes LOTR look like a Disney movie. Tons of violence and brutality - not much "fantasy" per se (i.e. no real magic) but lots of political machinations, betrayals, plots, etc. I am super-psyched as I have read all the books in the series (so far). Check it out at http://www.hbo.com/#/game-of-thrones


116
Now Playing / Re: Currently listening, part 1
« on: April 05, 2011, 08:38:56 AM »
Been listening to some older discs lately...TALES - The Seskian Wars



Tales is the pseudonym for a French EM artist, Jean-Luc Herve Berthelot. This is a SF-themed concept album with influences from ambient/spacemusic to Berlin school...atmospheric, dark, and sometimes dramatic, but not drone-based...definitely EM.

Greg Klamt - Fluxus Quo



I don't think Greg Klamt is making music as a solo act any longer (IIRC from what Jon Jenkins told me). This was his second solo album, but I think he has done some relatively recent guest stints on other Spotted Peccary CDs...OTOH, he may have walked away from music entirely. This album showcases the distinctive Spotted Peccary sound in electronic music, which has a strong cinematic soundtrack component as well as unique applications of drums and a unique sweeping melody component at times.


117
Art and Literature, Movies and TV / Re: Battle: Los Angeles
« on: March 19, 2011, 06:28:03 PM »
Saw the film today and while it wasn't perfect, obviously, it was very well done for what it is, i.e. a ground force invasion movie which only happens to be about aliens. Eckhart makes the movie - he is very VERY good in the role of the staff sergeant who does his best to keep the relatively new Marines (and their raw lieutenant) from feeling overwhelmed at their first taste of combat. The rest of the actors and characters are all cookie-cutter, as many reviews have stated...but honestly, except for Josh Hartnett, and to a lesser degree, Tom Sizemore, Eric Bana, and Sam Shepard, how many actors do you remember as characters from Blackhawk Down, which this film (Battle LA) is obviously mimicking.

The action scenes are very well done, capturing the intensity of firefights in an urban setting, where cover can be a car, a bus, or a partially blown-to-shit wall. The film wastes very little time on exposition so we know almost next to nothing about the aliens...except they obviously want to exterminate us and take over the planet.

Look...this is an action spectacle movie, nothing else (except, maybe, a nice recruitment film for the Marines, although enough of 'em die in the film that maybe not...). As such, it is LIGHT YEARS better than something like ID4 or many other big budget films. Because it is small in scope (only a handful of actors and only one locale), it feels more intimate. It doesn't matter if you "know" these Marines as individuals...after all, how many of the soldiers in Iraq and Afghanistan do you know personally, but their courage in fighting this enemy is admirable. And I know that sounds sappy, but the firefights are very intensely portrayed. Sure, there are some hokey speeches, but nothing as cringeworthy as, IMO, that horrendous "Tell me I'm a good man" ending to Saving Private Ryan.

It does suffer from a rather abrupt end and it certainly borrows plenty from ID4 in a way at the end (not as stupid as a computer virus, but almost as deux ex machina a device, in a way). It's nowhere near as flag-waving as ID4 though. And, IMO, it's a far superior film to Spielberg's War of the Worlds remake, which I enjoyed for the first 30-45 minutes or so and then it submarined into melodrama (I was hoping Cruise's character's whiny son would be killed).

Anyway, for me, I enjoyed it a lot. Saw in a very good theatre and as a digital presentation. Many critics point out how LOUD this film is and it really is all that! Is it SF? As much as W of the W or ID4 is...yes. In some ways, from a tactical standpoint, the aliens come off as plausible...their invasion strategy is spot-on.  I don't think you can simply say that this could be the same film if it was human vs. human because the technology doesn't exist for a human army to invade on that scale that rapidly and that effectively. Is that enough of a SF element to justify calling it SF? Not for Roger Ebert, but for me, yeah. One things is for sure...like other "close quarters" combat movies, such as Blackhawk Down and the underrated Tears of the Sun, this will be best appreciated, cinematically, either in a good theatre or with a good home set-up, and no way will you get the sonic impact of the movie without a VERY GOOD subwoofer!

118
Now Playing / Re: Currently listening, part 1
« on: March 16, 2011, 01:35:16 PM »
I cannot stop listening to Daft Punk's soundtrack to Tron: Legacy. It's a great amalgam of cinematic orchestral music with electronics. The main theme has me going nuts as I want to hear it over and over. Perfect driving music...dramatic (for the most part) with thunderous drums, cool synth work, and soaring strings. Makes me want to see the movie again and I've decided I will buy it when it comes out...sometimes, the music makes the movie that much better, I guess.


119
Art and Literature, Movies and TV / Re: Battle: Los Angeles
« on: March 13, 2011, 04:51:35 PM »
Didn't get to it this weekend as planned...came down with a wicked head cold. Hope to see it one night this week. will give my review when I finally get to see it.

120
Art and Literature, Movies and TV / Re: Battle: Los Angeles
« on: March 11, 2011, 06:50:03 PM »
Night Shift used to be a big one for me too. My friends and my brother and I used to quote all kinds of lines from that movie, even some of the unfunny ones like, "Chuck, I'm wearing white."

The obvious quotable lines are "Hey kid, you like music?" and Billy Blaze's various notes to self, like "put the mayonnaise in the can with the tuna."

Shelley Long in her underpants. Just think about that for a second.

"I'm an idea man, Chuck."

"Is this a great country or what?"

"How come we don't have TV, Chuck?"

"Love brokers! You and me, Chuck!"

"Call Star Kist."

Yeah, you could say Night Shift is one of my faves, too..and yes, I own that one too. Michael Keaton's second funniest film...after Beetlejuice, of course. "I've come for your daughter, Chuck."

I may have watch Night Shift tonight now...damn you, MG!

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