Anodyne
Friday, April 13, 2012
 

In memoriam Mitch Hedberg, still dead. 

"...and they all want Sun Chips!"
Wednesday, April 11, 2012
 

CJ (9), 2012
 

CJ (8), 2012
Tuesday, April 10, 2012
 
Sterling:

"James Bridle is a Walter Benjamin critic in an 'age of digital accumulation.' Bridle carries out a valiant cut-and-paste campaign that looks sorta like traditional criticism, but is actually blogging and tumblring. His New Aesthetic Tumblr bears the resemblance to thoughtful critique that mass production once did to handmade artifacts.

Now, this isn’t some personal James Bridle failing. Mr Bridle didn’t invent social media, any more than the industrial automation of atelier artwork was somehow the fault of Herr Walter Benjamin.

However, this is a pressing New Aesthetic problem, maybe the core problem at the root there. The bandwidth is available, the images are there, and the robots and digital devices get plenty of look-in. Where did the people go? Where is the aura, where is the credibility? Are robots with cameras supposed to have our credibility for us? They don’t."

[....]

"Modern creatives who want to work in good faith will have to fully disengage from the older generation’s mythos of phantoms, and masterfully grasp the genuine nature of their own creative tools and platforms. Otherwise, they will lack comprehension and command of what they are doing and creating, and they will remain reduced to the freak-show position of most twentieth century tech art. That’s what is at stake."

[....]

"Artists have used mechanical means of perception for a long time now. One doesn’t have to apologize for this nowadays, in the way Baudelaire used to wring his hands over daguerreotype cameras. That fight’s over. Everybody’s got hardware. People who can’t read have hardware. Every ivory tower we possess is saturated with hardware.

One doesn’t need to retreat into mystic obscurantism in order to understand that CERN is worthy of interest. CERN invented the World Wide Web. Contemporary artists don’t have to grasp at metaphors in order to log on to the CERN website. CERN built it, we live it now.

You can have all the machinic imagery out of CERN that you want, but the question is: what does it mean, how does it feel, what you do with it, how can you create? Is is beautiful, ugly, worthy, worthless, how is that good or bad, how does it change us?

It’s easy to sidle over to the subterranean cyclotron to take Instagrams of the many curios at CERN. I’ve seen them, they’re strange to me, but they’re not strange to the guys who built them. An aesthetics that’s overdependent on weirdness lacks ambition as an aesthetics. Weirdness is merely relative. Weirdness is never value-free."
Sunday, April 08, 2012
 
"The verb dub is defined as making a copy of one recording to another. The process of using previously recorded material, modifying the material, and subsequently recording it to a new master mix, in effect transferring or 'dubbing' the material, was utilized by Jamaican producers when making dubs. . . .Dub music is characterized by a 'version' or 'double' of an existing song, often instrumental, using B-sides of 45 RPM records and typically emphasizing the drums and bass for a sound popular in local sound systems. The instrumental tracks are typically drenched in sound effects such as echo,reverberation,with instruments and vocals dropping in and out of the mix. . . .The music sometimes features other noises, such as birds singing, thunder and lightning, water flowing, and producers shouting instructions at the musicians. It can be further augmented by live DJs. The many-layered sounds with varying echoes and volumes are often said to create soundscapes, or sound sculptures, drawing attention to the shape and depth of the space between sounds as well as to the sounds themselves. There is usually a distinctly organic feel to the music, even though the effects are electronically created."

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