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Saccenti’s visuals for School of 7 Bells

Posted by Jakub

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You may know Tim Saccenti for his unreal spacey Battles video or his wild Animal Collective videos or press photos for Flying Lotus and Jimmy Edgar but his live visuals this weekend for School of Seven Bells were jaw dropping, not only did School of Seven Bells play a gorgeous live show but Tim Saccenti nailed the visuals and captured the sound perfectly, I almost felt like I was experiencing something that was on some other level. Below is a great review of the night:

Digital Transcendentalism
Timothy Saccenti’s Visuals andthe School of Seven Bells

The question that immediately comes to mind as one looks into the silky black voids of photographer/director Timothy Saccenti’s mind, manifested wonderfully in images of black expanses occupied ironically by an artist or an object beyond one’s capacity for reaction, is this: What possible world am I occupying and how am I existing in this space and time? With the School of Seven Bell’s visuals, Saccenti (in conjuction with Flame artist Alvin Cruz) achieves, brilliantly and originally, the apex of what all artists can hope to achieve; as the mirrored yet chaotic colors begin to rise up on the screen, the viewer relinquishes control of his or her consciousness of the moment and enters the beautiful, black, colorful, numbing minds of Saccenti and Cruz.
So what makes these images so otherworldly yet familiar enough that one can fall into them so whole-heartedly? The peice mixes familiar epiphenomenal stimuli (shapes and images) with powerful digital distortion, creating a space that is paradoxically common and foreign. The experience places the viewer at the precipice of human comprehension and tethers them to the rock of humanity with fibers so inconspicuous that it is hard to know when one might fall into the black abyss. It is exhilarating. Paired with the ambient, submissive music of The School of Seven Bells, an audience is treated to complete perceptual experience involving the lyrical mastery of the band and their interstellar sound.
There is a diamond shape that occupies the screen for much of the piece. Besides being a spatial image that one can clearly identify, it suggests another, semi-erotic, human form that boldly stares back at a transfixed audience. It is difficult not to see a vaginal, pink shape in the diamond. It is natural and digital, surrounded by a hazy distortion and heavy digital sounds that are reminiscent of television snow. Watching the two female singers, it is hard not to feel lulled by a kind of siren song.
One of the more powerful images, a white face with dark eyes, exists as a kind of character throughout the piece. It comes and goes as the viewer’s ability to make it out is realized and lost. The face is mirrored on both sides of the screen as one’s own face so commonly is. The face swings back and forth with an organic fluidity that is imperfectly natural and correct. Amongst the computerized movement of box shapes and spheres, this face stands out with its organic movement that, at the apex of its swing, faces the audience and becomes black (with white eyes). It is an eerie and fantastic moment as the echoing voices of The School of Seven Bells rise and fall to the metronome of the huge face.
The image that most dramatically drives the feeling of nature is the wilderness at sunrise; however, in digitally transcendental fashion, the piece juxtaposes the desert grasses with outstanding digital effects. The sunrise image sits inside a sphere that seems to rotate as the image remains still. The sphere fits inside the skeleton of a neon cube in an eclectic picture that moves with a more perfect, digital, fluidity. The circle is also seen in another major part of the piece. Inside of a large, white circle are numbers that follow around the circle’s circumference, similarly to that of an ancient calendar. Here, Saccenti seems to be exploring the most seamless connections between man and nature. Time is a human invention developed to understand the most fundamental engine of nature. It is a similar idea that drives the image of the Hindu deity, Ganesh. Here, the audience explores the human invention of religion as a tool for understanding the impossibilities of nature. A statue of the deity rotates slowly, giving a reverend importance to his presence.
The pairing of these two artists could not have been more perfect. The School of Seven Bells creates an original sound using a similar juxtaposition. Soft voices and flowing guitar riffs round out the heavy digital sound that backs up each song. These two elements collide to produce a sound that is otherworldly.
Throughout the piece, we see the majesty of nature and the boundless imagination of humanity. Represented beautifully by digital displays, the viewer enters a possible world that can only exist with the imagination of this brilliant collaboration, through the conduit that is their talent.

- Steven Graf

Stream Flying Lotus’ New Album

Posted by Jakub

Photo by Tim Saccenti



Until The Quiet Comes is ready for your ears, the record is out October 2nd on Warp, below is his upcoming tour schedule and here’s a link to preorder the record, as always support physical music if you like what you heard.

Flying Lotus Tour Dates

October
07 New York, NY, Terminal 5
12 Montreal, QC, Neon
13 Toronto, ON, Danforth Music Hall
15 Detroit, MI, Majestic Theatre
16 Chicago, IL, Metro
18 Denver, CO, Ogden
19 Salt Lake City, UT, Urban Lounge
22 Vancouver, BC, Fortune Club
23 Seattle, WA, Neptune
25 Oakland, CA, Fox Theatre

November
03 London, UK, Brixton Academy ‘All-nighter’ w/ 2 special Flying Lotus performances + support from Thundercat (live)
04 Amsterdam, Netherlands, Paradiso
05 Leipzig, Germany, Conne Island
06 Paris, France, La Machine du Moulin Rouge
07 Fribourg, Switzerland, Fri-Son
08 Berlin, Germany, Gretchen
09 Manchester, UK, Manchester Warehouse Project
23 Makuhari Messe, JP, electraglide festival

4 Days of Sound, Art and Inspiration

Posted by Jakub


The Art Directors Club CRE8 Series presents:
Ghostly International: Of Art and Artifice

Ghostly International and Art Directors Club collaborate on an exciting 4 day event in New York City this September showing the diversity in their artistic roster. Below is the information and schedule on what to catch and make sure to get your tickets soon, this site just launched today.

ABOUT THE EVENT

The Ghostly universe has been steadily expanding since its humble beginnings in Ann Arbor, Michigan in 1999.

The Art Directors Club begins its CRE8 series of music and art focusing on Ghostly International, a unique culture identity that has helped elevate the careers of visual artists including Michael Cina, Sougwen Chung, Andy Gilmore, Will Calcutt and Matt Shlian, while releasing work from musicians such as Matthew Dear, Com Truise, Gold Panda, Lusine and School of Seven Bells.

The Ghostly aesthetic and it’s accompanying ethos has always sought to cast off the restrictions of genre and form. An assertion that creativity, in its apolitical nature, is an act worth striving to achieve. Unconcerned with classification, Ghostly highlights the act of making in and of itself, no matter the medium.

In 2010, Ghostly launched Ghostly International Editions, a “label” of artwork and artists that has grown into a collective of some of North America’s best designers and artists.

Of Art and Artifice is not a retrospective—it is a comprehensive state of the union, a peek into what’s next after 13 years of creativity from Ghostly International, creating an essential selection of work from the Ghostly family into a never-before-seen collection.

ABOUT THE ART DIRECTORS CLUB

Founded in 1920, the Art Directors Club is the premier organization for leaders in visual communication, boasting one of the most concentrated groups of creative talent in the world. A not-for-profit membership organization, the ADC’s mission is to connect creative professionals around the globe while simultaneously provoking and elevating world-changing ideas.

SCHEDULE

Thursday
September 13th / @6pm

Opening Gala
Live music performances by:
Com Truise
Lusine
Michna (DJ)
Live projection performance by:
Sougwen Chung

Friday
September 14th / @6pm

Artist Talks Day 1
Hosted By Incase:
Michael Cina
Andy Gilmore
Will Calcutt

Saturday
September 15th / @6pm

Artist Talks Day 2
Hosted By Incase:
Matthew Shlian
Timothy Saccenti
Sougwen Chung

Sunday
September 16th

Open to public 12-5pm

TICKET AVAILABLE HERE

Jesu+His Name Is Alive+Aguayo+Rebolledo

Posted by Jakub

School of Seven Bells - Photo by Tim Saccenti
Experimental rocker Jesu remixes School of Seven Bells, the remix is very similar to something that maybe Apparat or The Reflecting Skin would of done I think which includes heavy dry kicks and swells, definitely one of my favorite remixes in 2009.

Recently listened to a mix by Philip Sherburne and it started off with this His Name Is Alive track which I thought was a group that has some ok records but this instrumental should be followed up by a whole series of songs like this, i’m sure i’d not be the only one buying that record up.

More electronic music producers need to be making music videos that they’ve done if they have some decent taste like this Rebolledo one that just features Matias Aguayo walking around on the beach eating ice cream and singing the song. The drummer is the the best part, I have no idea what he’s playing with but he’s looking great doing it hah. I hope to see younger musicians like Seth Troxler take on a project like this because he’s almost at this level and has the imagination for it. The video is also refreshing for Techno/House and it also made me revisit Matias Aguayo’s first record “Are You Really Lost” which blew me away again. On a side note: That Theremin sound will kinda get to you, might actually turn you away but I guess its more about the bassline at times for me and vox.

School Of Seven Bells – Face To Face On High Places (Jesu Remix)

His Name Is Alive – Sitting Still Moving Still Staring Out

Matias Aguayo – So In Love

Rebolledo – Pitaya Frenesí (Vocal Version) [feat. Matias Aguayo]

Rebolledo – Pitaya Frenesí (Vocal Version) [feat. Matias Aguayo]

Flying Lotus – Live At Plastic People

Posted by Jakub

Flying Lotus - Saccenti photography
While Scott was in New York for F5 we got a chance to meet up with Tom Croose, Eliot Lipp, Mux Mool and head over to see Kode 9 and Flying Lotus play live at his new monthly in New York called Brainfeeder which is held at Club Love. I wish I could explain the energy and sound in that room and the heat too but maybe what’s best is if I post this live set of Flying Lotus from Plastic People so you can get a taste. The mix starts really becoming proper right around the 12 minute mark and on, if anyone has a track ID for the first song i’d greatly appreciate it because i’ve been pulling my hair out trying to find out.

Flying Lotus – Live At Plastic People 04.05.09

Musician/Designer Press Photos

Posted by Jakub

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17_jarvis_cocker_web_singleOne of the most important non musical to do’s for a musician/designer is getting a proper press photo in my opinion. This is your chance to show a ton of your personality and a big step in getting writers on board for a feature or helping them to understand your musical direction at that time. This doesn’t mean you have to show your face, take for example the fact that we never saw Burial’s face for more than a year — we just had that drawing of him — but it set the mood I thought. If you’re a musician or even graphic designer, I think brainstorming out some ideas first is well worth your time when doing a press shot. We’ve all worn out the standing in a urban landscape, the blurry shot at a live show, or standing still like a mannequin with a white background. So from 2009 and on i’d love to see photographers really grabbing the personality out of their subjects (Timothy Saccenti’s excellent work comes to mind). This kind of effort in a press photo could make or break you chances with bloggers or writers many times prompting them to use your photo above a couple other things they’re writing about that day. At any rate, a good shot definitely increases your chances of being written about.

Above are a few of my favorites [from top to bottom: Kraftwerk, Boys Noize, Erlend Oye, Jimmy Edgar, Jarvis Cocker]