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Messages - 9dragons

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Thanks for posting that vid above Judd, it got me sparked up to think about Prometheus again. Actually, it feels like I haven't stopped thinking about it since first seeing it a week after it came out. The first sequence on the waterfall had me staring in wonder, and I turned to my friend sitting there and we just nodded in approval. Then comes that wonderful shot of the ship, like a tiny comet, engulfed in space, and all the wonderful scenes with David in the beginning, that seemed classic cinema to me. As the movie began to fall apart (as I thought at the moment) with all the incongruous idiocy wrecking the mood, I seriously started to fidget in my seat and had a sour urge to walk the hell out of the theater. Even some of the excellent money shots towards the end did not mitigate the jarring stupidity of the rest of the film. As the credits rolled, I walked out with my friend shaking my head...

Then went back to see it a week later. Then again, a few days after that. Then a fourth time. I've remarkably ended up absolutely fascinated by this movie, partly because I just revel in Ridley Scott's graphic sense, and the way he's able to communicate with film. Partly due to the exquisite design of the film, the sets, and beasts, and the seeming restraint in the use of CG. Scott has a way of restraining himself so that when the insane and unreal moments come, they feel real. The scene with the Engineer battling the giant squid baby was an absolute delight. And so much more.

So I've gone back and watched Alien and Blade Runner (studied them more accurately), and realized that a lot of the criticisms that could be applied to Prometheus can also be leveled at these earlier films, regardless of how "classic" they are now. The thing is, is that the mastery of the vision overrides the missteps, just as it does in Prometheus.

For me, Prometheus is one of the best big time theater movies to come out in quite a while. Avatar is not good for me anymore, and though stunning on a first watch, was awful upon a second. Prometheus, I hated on the first viewing and then, once I cleared my head of my initial reactions, was able to watch it again and again with great entertainment and to get a lot of mileage out of it. This film seems to have generated more imaginative discussion than any I can remember. I'm enjoying that aspect very much.

Excited to dive into the DVD when it comes out.

Other Ambient (and related) Music / Re: Overrated Ambient
« on: August 24, 2012, 08:33:34 PM »
That's funny Ain Sophistry, the second I read the title of this thread, I too thought "Hipster Ambient". The last time I was actually paying attention in a meaningful way, that was a worrying trend. I bought some albums from these artists, and frankly, after being a fan of the best of the best in real ambient, this stuff seems pretty weak. I think it is the more savvy presentation of the music, and its lacing with metal/darkness that made it more cool for the kids to like it.

I think more hardcore critique by reviewers would be welcome, it definitely elevates things when the reviewers are not afraid to really take on a release. But pardon my ignorance, how many people are actually reviewing real ambient music anymore? I've been out of it, so haven't been paying attention, so pardon my unawareness. But if I wanted to buy a release these days (and after a long hiatus, tonight in fact, I am shopping around like the old days) I don't think I would look to any review, judging the samples and memory of past releases as the final arbiter.

For a while I did feel like this genre was dead. I was an obsessive collector too, but after a while just felt let down by a seeming lack of passion and intensity in the music. And I'm not talking about intensity as in heaviness, but intensity in terms of what ambient music offers. It just really started to feel like the music was becoming rote, and too well behaved and predictable. Not enough emotional input.

The other night I stumbled upon a copy of On Land and Music for Airports that escaped my album purge of some time back. I put both of them on back to back and was utterly mesmerized, almost coming to tears. I am not a big fan of Eno by any stretch, having been burned by many of his crap albums, but these two just had that rawness and emotion. They are intensely pleasurable in the way true ambient can be, and not tainted by the need to be annoyingly avant guard.

Now I've got out Mystic Chords, all four discs, one of the only Roach albums I saved from the last album purge (I needed money, but that wasn't the only reason, also wanted to clean my musical pallette) and am reveling in how great these are. I agree with some posters about Mag Void, I don't necessarily think it was overrated, but I personally just never caught on to it.

Anyway, it's good to be back, this music is quite refreshing after a bit of a break.

Now Playing / Re: Currently listening, part 1
« on: August 24, 2012, 08:19:33 PM »
I've been way out of the ambient and electronic for too long now.

Hearing that Squarepusher above gives me that feeling of excitement I used to get from Warp records. A couple weeks ago I brought out Selected Ambient Works 2, On Land, and Music for Airports, and they blew me away, evoking big emotion. That's funny, two of those I just read mentioned on the Overrated thread, but in that moment they really got me.

Thinking of picking up some new records to decorate my new apartment...been out of it for a while, but am now on the hunt for new listens.

Now Playing / Re: Currently listening, part 1
« on: January 05, 2012, 03:12:04 PM »
The most listened to album in my collection: Lullaby for the Moon. Japanese traditional music, had for years and it never gets old.

Other Ambient (and related) Music / Re: Robert Rich: Medicine Box (2011)
« on: January 05, 2012, 03:07:49 PM »
I've purchased many of Robert Rich's albums, though not all. Early on I saw that he had a dark ambient, minimal side, and a new age side. Listening to albums like Stalker and Troubled Resting Place firmly established me as a fan of Rich, and I even purchased his new age albums, and enjoyed them. Around the realease of Elecrtic Ladder, I started to get turned off to the new age side, and couldn't listen to these works. Though I did cherish Temple of the Invisible. I think at this time Robert is establishing a prime style, a fusion of everything he does into one album. Though there is no denying the exquisite production, and the beauty of the sound, I find it much too homogenized, too luke warm. Ylang at first was very inspiring to me, then my interest dropped off, and I never went back to it. I'm sorry to say I won't pick up Medicine Box after listening to the samples, as I think the same problem will arise. As Robert Rich crystallizes and perfects his technique, and is able to smoothly blend so many elements, I become less and less interested. But I wouldn't say that this is not wonderful music, I have just personally lost the thread. It's not 'world music' enough to make me want to listen to it rather than my more traditional 'world' music, and it doesn't attract me in its other elements, primarily the beats. Is it trying to do too much in one album? It feels much too smoothed out for me. I don't enjoy being even slightly critical of Robert Rich, who I have great respect for, but I wonder if others out there have been following his music beyond their personal interest, enjoying the elements that they used to like, but not getting much out of it ultimately?

Getting the chills just watching this preview. The fact that he used Giger again to do the design shows true integrity. I have not anticipated a film more than this as far as I can remember.

(Just went through the frame by frame commentary and the alien nerd inside me is crying with joy. But I feel like I've learned too much already. Will follow Altus' wise advice and attempt to avoid any further investigation into the film until release)

Everything and Nothing / Re: Jewel Cases
« on: June 30, 2011, 05:02:33 PM »
I was just breaking down the remnants of my collection, and was annoyed by just having to do 50 or so! I sympathize with your plight Jim.

As I looked at the stack of useless plastic chunks that had been divested of their booklets, I got kind of disgusted by the whole thing. Jewel cases as objects are indeed lame things. Even the simplest paper sleeve is preferable. All the albums are in the carrying case, and I am looking at a small, beautiful stack of eco wallet/digipaks nestled on the bookshelf.

Though I am starting to think about the idea of albums being released as just some fine printed art, with a download code.
How would this go over with everyone on the forum?
I've noticed many friends turning back to the vinyl world, and some even without record players buying the record with a download code, just to get the full art experience.

I'm noticing on labels like Thrill Jockey, that the price of the cd/straight download/vinyl with download code is almost the same. Interesting...

Revisiting some previous Quiet Sounds podcasts that I have stashed, and am enjoying them very much. I went back to your site, thinking, I have to download all the Quiet Sounds right now! and find that none of the links work. Is this due to the nefarious hacking that happened previously? I can only seem to download the most recent episode (and can't wait to hear it!). Again, thanks so much for this exquisite work...

Now Playing / Re: Currently listening, part 1
« on: May 21, 2011, 11:43:39 PM »
Listening to gamelan and persian. And Alio Die, one of the few who is still making really interesting new music.

Now Playing / Re: Currently listening, part 1
« on: March 17, 2011, 12:58:09 AM »
Alio Die - Secret History of the Clouds
Northern - Drawn

Two album that flow like organic machines. Rolling so exquisitely, technological but embracing. A great late night of listening...

SAW II is also queued up in the stereo. An album whose glory never fades, and the memories of early listens are ingrained in the mind.

Now Playing / Re: Currently listening, part 1
« on: March 11, 2011, 10:23:42 PM »
Sabbath albums 1-8 on repeat...

Think I know what I'll be asking for for my birthday this month. Excellent release, Mike, thank you for your work. And since I've pretty much sworn off jewel case purchases, I am very pleased with the new format.

Other Ambient (and related) Music / Re: Your scariest ambient track
« on: March 02, 2011, 12:41:05 AM »
The Rich/Lustmord collab takes the cake for me.

Inade has some excellent creepiness as well.

One really weird, maybe not necessarily creepy (depends on your mood) album I have been getting deep into lately is Roach's Possible Planet. I love that one.

Now Playing / Re: Currently listening, part 1
« on: March 02, 2011, 12:37:38 AM »
Listening to the Hobbit 10 dsic set read by Rob Inglis. Being told stories by such an excellent reader is like being a kid again...

Everything and Nothing / Re: Sort Of Odd..
« on: March 02, 2011, 12:35:44 AM »
I visit the Hypnos forum about 100 times more than I check my facebook page. Much more relaxing and enjoyable here...

Now Playing / Re: Currently listening, part 1
« on: February 05, 2011, 07:03:19 PM »
Fancied listening to the track Steppenwolf and it's the only recording I have - some great lines from Bob Calvert....

I get cravings for that song on occasion. Calvert is excellent, unequalled in his lyrics. I have a disc of him just reading his poetry that puts me into a weird mood, quite enjoyable.

It's interesting because there can be great gems in one line and the next a real clunker....
What is the disc of poetry?

It's called centigrade 232, a booklet of poems and cd put out by voiceprint. Don't know if it's still in print, but only 500 were made...

I agree on the Calvert lyrics. I look at his poetry as being in a different realm, between psych-rock and literary, so I look at his lines in a weird way, comparing him more to the totality of rock lyrics and not as much to strictly written poets. He's kind of like Morrison in that way...but with the pulp sci-fi awareness that I love so dearly...

Other Ambient (and related) Music / Re: Recent music purchases
« on: February 02, 2011, 11:21:42 PM »
I'm getting ready to finally get a new cd, the occasion being my birthday. Thinking of Steve Roach's recent albums. I am allowed three new albums, which will probably be the only ones I can buy for many months to come. Any suggestions?

Other Ambient (and related) Music / Re: Darkest Ambient
« on: February 02, 2011, 11:20:10 PM »
Listening to Nanthan Youngblood - Asunder. A wonderful slab of dark ambient beauty that illustrates the points we are talking about. This one seems unsung, not sure how many others out there have it. Put out by Steve Roach's label.

Now Playing / Re: Currently listening, part 1
« on: February 02, 2011, 11:18:03 PM »
Fancied listening to the track Steppenwolf and it's the only recording I have - some great lines from Bob Calvert....

I get cravings for that song on occasion. Calvert is excellent, unequalled in his lyrics. I have a disc of him just reading his poetry that puts me into a weird mood, quite enjoyable.

Other Ambient (and related) Music / Re: Top 10 Ambient/Space Music albums
« on: February 02, 2011, 11:15:20 PM »
Mystic Chords is at the top of the list for me.

Tempus Rei is another absolute favorite.

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