Monday, March 29, 2010

Recent Movies

Departures is a Japanese movie about a concert cellist who has to find another job when his orchestra is disbanded. He returns to his home town and ends up getting a job preparing the dead for burial. I found it very emotional, and recommend it.

A Serious Man is another Coen brothers movie, a fairly grim drama with no happy endings in sight. Maybe on a day when you're looking for something to confirm your pessimism.

It turns out that all those people who have been talking up The Wire were not mistaken. This is a pretty damn good show about the cops and drug dealers in Baltimore. Jean and I are watching it between movies.

Sunday, March 28, 2010

Raw Photo Dump

I've dumped three new batches of photos onto Flickr:

I uploaded them raw/unedited (I think they're pretty much all from the P&S, hence originally JPEGs), then did some brief touch-ups using the online Picnic photo editor. I chose this route rather than the more time consuming local Photoshop routine, because they've been sitting on my computer for two or three weeks, and I have a new batch of photos that I want to spend a little more time tweaking. More on that later.

Thursday, March 18, 2010

Musical Lapses

Okay, I know I've been on vacation from the weblog, and even when I do attend to it, I'm just using it as offboard memory, i.e. to remind me what I've recently seen on Netflix, or grabbed from eMusic, for instance. Guess what? This is another one of those posts!

I'm just starting it here to remind me to fish out the past few albums when I get home, but as I'm at work, I'll keep it short. I just wanted to note the new album I'm listening to right now:

The Edge of the Forest - Darren Johnston

Oddly, Darren is not in the Big Fat Book of Jazz, which gave me some pause. Is he a fly-by-night Jazz scammer? But the samples on eMusic sounded intriguing, so I decided to take a chance, and grabbed the whole thing (I know, eMusic bumped prices, how can I justify such a wild gamble? Just a fool for music, I guess...).

It's pretty avant-garde, and I'm not sure if it is going to grow on me, or 'go' on me, if you catch my meaning. But I'm attracted/repelled by the first composition, "Be the Frog", a nine minute journey from Gershwin to Cage to Carl Stalling (where is my damn Carl Stalling Project CD???) to who-knows-who. At times I'm just bouncing in my chair digging the music, while at others I'm sorta wagging my hand in the universal gesture of get-on-with-it.

Digging around on the net, I find he studied under Fred Frith, which is as good a pedigree as any. And why don't I have any Fred Frith, for frack's sake (I guess since I have a lot of The Residents I sorta have him, as he guested with them tons)?

Wow, pent-up weblogging fury! I better stop before I kill again. Anyway, I'll tag the other recent albums onto the end of this post when I get home. Ciao!


  • Overnight in Paris - Clifford Brown

  • Alice - Tom Waits

  • Winter Moon - Art Pepper

  • The Black Light - Calexico

And two piano compositions by Emahoy Tsegué-Maryam Guèbrou from the 'Ethiopiques Volume 21 - Ethiopia Song'. I plan to grab the rest of this album over time.