Minikeikka: Islaja

September 12, 2007 at 8:27 pm (music)

Galleria Välivuosi on loistava tila ja ansaitsee enemmän huomiota (myös minulta). Nyt käynnissä on Mitättömyyden musta laatikko -näyttely, jonka yhteydessä Välivuoden mielettömässä kellaritilassa on ääni-installaatioita joka päivä. Tänään erehdyin puolivahingossa kuuntelemaan Islajan puolen tunnin keikan, ja olin positiivisesti yllättynyt. Aikaisemmin en ollut kunnolla kuunnellut Isaljaa juuri laisinkaan, vaikka jotain hänestä tiesinkin. Oma suosikkini suomalaisista naispuolisista avant garde lähes-sooloartisteista on tietysti ihana Vuk.

Tilaa käytettiin hienosti hyväksi – yläkerran huoneessa ei ollut ketään, vain lappu ohjaamassa alakertaan. Kapeiden kierreportaiden jälkeen mitään opasteita ei sitten ollutkaan. Alakerran käytävä oli hämärä, ja edestäpäin kantautui epämääräisen meditatiivista ääntelyä. Väistämättömät Liisa Ihmemaassa -vertaukset tulivat mieleen, olo oli vähän kuin olisin salaa hiipinyt jonkun piilopaikkaan. Itse installaatiohuone oli pimeä muutamaa kynttilää lukuunottamatta, ja esiintyjät istuivat lattialla kynttilöiden valopiirissä. Haparoin pilkkopimeässä istumaan lattialle, ja muutaman minuutin kuluttua silmät tottuivat pimeään niin täysin, että aikaisempi sokeus tuntui oudolta. Islajan musiikkihan on enemmänkin ambient noisea kuin biisipohjaista folk-fiilistelyä, vaikka hänet ilmeisesti usein freak folk -ilmiöön yhdistetäänkin. Minähän nyt siis olen Beatlesilla kasvatettu konservatiivi, joten en ikipäivänä ostaisi Isaljan nauhoitteita kotiin, mutta itse keikka oli mielenkiintoinen. Puolen tunnin setin aikana ei ollut kertaakaan tylsää, vaikka Islajakin näytti jossain vaiheessa hieman hämmentyvän, kun ei ollut varma, kuinka pitkään piti soittaa. (“That song doesn’t usually last three hours, but we got into a serious thing and then I forgot how it ended“) Tunnelma tietysti vaikutti paljon, Tavastian lavalla en välttämättä jaksaisi katsella kovin pitkään, kun nainen kilistelee kynttilänjalkaa kynsillään ja siirtelee metallipurkkia paikasta toiseen. Välivuoden betonilattialla kuitenkin sarkasmi karisi. Jälkeenpäin olo oli virkistynyt. Ääni-installaatio vai keikka? Hmm.

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Learn to keep your mouth shut Owen Pallett

September 11, 2007 at 7:23 pm (music)

Owen Pallett

I have gotten more into last.fm lately, and am finding it vastly more useful than my former favourite, Pandora.com. Last.fm just has more music it seems, and the recommendations are much more apt (Ace of Base in my “Goldfrapp Radio”, Pandora.com, really?). So last.fm recently introduced me to a young Canadian artist who calls himself Final Fantasy (wikipedia) to the unending confusion of my friends. Which, by the way, means mega geek points for said friends so it’s all good. I downloaded Final Fantasy’s first album, Has a Good Home, from emusic.com (another music site I’m starting to have some issues with), and listened to it semi-compulsively for a few days. Read the rest of this entry »

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Technology cannot replace talent

March 30, 2007 at 8:32 pm (Uncategorized)

Were you aware? A new camera does not make you a better photographer. I am rapidly discovering this with the acquisition of a new camera phone. I was planning all sorts of flickr craziness and blog illustration, but no. Photography, like music composition, is a mysterious arcane art that completely eludes me. This is why I think photographers, composers, and graphic designers (to an extent) are just that bit cooler than normal people. They get something that profoundly baffles me. I think they may be mutants.

Meanwhile, this is a handly tool that I’ve been using for a couple of days now to decrease productivity to the absolute bearable minimum.

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My IM with God

March 28, 2007 at 10:54 pm (Uncategorized)

 You too can hook up with the Man upstairs at iGod (“Repenting made easy!”)!  Having grown up with Sierra adventure games, I have a soft spot for AI-baiting.  Hence the following transcript. Read the rest of this entry »

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Recent musical discoveries

March 19, 2007 at 8:17 pm (music, politics)

Jenny Wilson: Love and Youth

I was sitting in the living room of a friend in Sydney with the TV on. A bizarre little music video with black-and-white doodles wandering around the screen came on, with a vaguely lazy post-electroclash sound and a woman singing delightfully strange adolescent lyrics. What made this embarassing was that I had no idea who this person was despite Jenny Wilson having been massively hyped by the Finnish/Nordic press when her album was actually new. And I think she is the author of my favourite sound byte of the past couple of years – I obviously don’t remember it word for word, but the gist of it is that as she was an unemployed single mom while she was working on the material for Love and Youth, she can be thought of as a product of the Nordic welfare system. Which sounded wonderful and a little disturbing.

On one hand, this is what you get from a strong welfare state: exceptional talent comes out and benefits the state (here: probably the Swedish tourism bureau) regardless of economic background. On the other, the government gave her money while she wasn’t even trying to find a job, and just played around with samplers and lyrics and things. I suppose it depends on your political affiliation whether you think this is worthwhile. I’d like to think that it is, but for this kind of a system to be supported, rich people will have to pay lots and lots of money in tax.

Rufus Wainwright: Want (Two) Read the rest of this entry »

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*LUST*

March 15, 2007 at 6:44 pm (knits)

Lion and Lamb

Yarn yarn YARN YAAAAARN!

For patterns that are AWESOME!

But I cannot afford it! Because I bought shoes! That are AT LEAST AS AWESOME!

But not as awesome as ANYTHING HERE!

sigh, shoes’n’yarn.

(We will return to our normal pseudo-academic discourse shortly)

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Slippery Little Devil: Feminism

March 14, 2007 at 4:05 pm (politics)

Feminism is funny

When I first discovered my mother’s stash of Doris Lessing books, I was delighted. My mom – dedicated warrior against all things genre (unless the genre was nouvelle vague or Russian realism) – had forayed into science fiction? Also, female sf writer? Has to be feminist. And if she’s a feminist, she must agree with me on gender equality issues, and I can safely expect her books to offer me the warm fuzzy smugness of agreeing on politics. Little did I know that Lessing was but a few years away from denouncing her status as a “feminist icon” (having already denied writing “science fiction”), or that feminism was mighty different back in the day (1970s). I trudged part way through her Canopus in Argos series, and wasn’t quite sure whether to laugh or cry when I got to what can only be described as the sf precursor to Men are from Mars, Women are from Venus – part two of the series, The Marriages Between Zones Three, Four, and Five (1980, admittedly).

Read the rest of this entry »

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Lies: Men

January 7, 2007 at 2:24 am (Uncategorized)

Earth Girls Are.

I hope to make this an ongoing series! I wish to examine the ways in which stupid traditional roles make inter-gender relations more complicated than they should be. This is how men are presented to women (or girls), despite obvious everyday experience to the contrary. The lying has gone on for long enough. Let it end here.

Lie #1: Men are taller than women

Can this really be a statistical fact? So many of the men I know are the same height as me, and I’m not freakishly tall for a woman. I have more than once gone out to a club wearing heels, and been offered a delightfully unimpeded view to the bar / DJ booth over the heads of a crowd of men. I don’t mind, short men are wonderful, it’s just that I have been taught to expect men to tower over me. And apparently men like to think they’re taller than women too (shamefully the only example I can think of right now is TomKat and the absurd not-standing-on-a-stack-of-phone-book-honestly wedding photo (no I won’t link to it!)) Were pumps originally developed by a very frustrated female cobbler to make men feel like tiny, girlish eunuchs? Have men shrunk? Or has the right to vote made women taller? Or is it all an ELABORATE HOAX?

Lie #2: Men are really only after one thing, and that one thing is sex Read the rest of this entry »

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Ostalgiaa

January 4, 2007 at 9:49 pm (politics, travel)

Trabi-Land

Kiellettiinkö sinulta lapsena Aku Ankka, koska se on amerikkalaista kulttuuri-imperialismia? Tiedätkö, mikä on Kipinä-lehti? Teitkö aikanaan lasten sanaristikoita, joiden ratkaisuun kuuluivat olennaisena osana mm. sanat “rauha” ja “solidaarisuus”? Tuleeko Che-paidoista aina ensimmäisenä mieleen isä sammareissa? Kutsutko Castroa vieläkin etunimeltä? Kyseessä on nähdäkseni ns. ostalgian lievempi kotimainen muoto, taistostalgia. Read the rest of this entry »

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SPR: Synkkä ei homoverelle

November 2, 2006 at 5:40 pm (politics)

HOMOVAARA

Tämähän on vanha juttu, mutta heräsin lehtijutun myötä taas kauhistelemaan: Suomen Punaisen Ristin Veripalvelu pitää miesten välistä seksiä pysyvänä esteenä verenluovutukselle. Ihan totta! Ns. “kaikille” on voimassa kolmen kuukauden luovutuskielto uuden seksipartnerin kanssa hommailun jälkeen. Luulisi tämän seulovan bareback-orgioissa riehuvat poppers-päiset high-risk-homot luovuttajista jo valmiiksi (laske suomenkieliset sanat edellisessä lauseessa). Veripalvelu kuitenkin pelkää homoruton riistäytyvän käsistä, jos naapurin Erkki ja Esa päästetään laverille. Read the rest of this entry »

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