Olafur Arnalds - Live at Leicester Cathedral 05/06/2013 Review
As the church bells chimed on the hour of eight, the line slowly moved forward into the main hall of Leicester Cathedral. Even though for most people, coming to a place such as this, would have had a more religious purpose. Tonight it forms the perfect setting for Olafur Arnalds to end his recent tour. Unlike previous performances, this was a more formal affair, with seating arranged to surround the stage and its performers.
After a moments silence the sole supporting musician, Douglas Dares, made his way to the grand piano. Looking like a bespectacled Morrissey, but singing with a voice more akin to that of Jeff Buckley, the words of his first song ‘Caroline’ spoke out to the audience. Breaking the wave of apprehension and bringing a more serene and informal tone to the proceedings. As it progressed, the focus of the song’s lyrics started to manifest, romantically idealising the concept of a dead method of communication to inspire the more innate feelings of love and loss. After a captivating beginning, from offstage a string quartet joined him to bring a more orchestral twist to his next song. He was especially surprised when Olafur himself came to join him at the piano, giving an unexpected accompaniment, his surprise reflected as much as his appreciation in his penultimate ballad.
After a short interlude, Olafur made his way to the stage and as an unusual first request he asked the audience to provide a harmonized note to sample for use in his first composition. Subdued notes gradually formed and accompanied the solemn string section that allowed the music to spring forth from its naturally occurring origins of the audiences assembled sound. It gradually crescendoed, drastically differing from that of the daily choruses that usually ricochet around these hallowed walls. The low key glare of the street lamps strewn through the stained glass windows adding a much desired depth to his music as they complimented the muted tones of night blue inside the building. Each of his compositions justifying the need for silence to fully appreciate the impact, as it required absolute attention from each and every sense we use, as if he were conducting a performance for a king that we will never see.
The similarities are always going to be drawn to earlier Icelandic artists such as Bjork and Sigur Ros, their influences are subtle in his work but he’s making more of the soundscape, still paying homage but using his own interpretation to create something entirely new. If anything, he compares more with the film composer Clint Mansell, as his work seems to want nothing more than to score some as yet unknown film. The orchestral accompaniment was used to great effect, even when introducing elements that clashed with the surroundings, mimicking the interruptions of the church bells, leading to the revelation that this was to be anything but traditional, continually keeping the audience on their collective toes.
With this in mind, one of the quartet crept forward, violin in hand and serenaded the crowd with a simple song that captured their full attention. The sight of the the spot light dropping suddenly on a single member of the band to provide a beautifully played piece that mirrored the solitary but intoxicating atmosphere. Each time hearing the audience breathe in anticipation of the next note, with each meticulously played chord making the crowd more aware of the dull orange sun falling slowly behind the windows of worship.
One of the more outstanding tracks of the night, offered a glimpse into the future of Arnalds musical career, the string led track ‘Poland’ which has been used on the forthcoming Hollywood film ‘Another Happy Day’. It played out like a ballad to the open road on which we walk and how they sometimes resemble the choices we make in life. But the feelings created by his music aren’t all without hope, the way the music was constructed had the ability to interpret both the highs and the lows, but it constantly changed throughout, almost creating an electronic being that attempted to punch though the melancholic surfaces laid bare in front of it.
If the town was a gallery and the cathedral was its frame, I couldn’t think of a better artist than Olafur to paint a picture within the confines of its boundaries. He used his music to show Leicester what they should be listening to as the sun sets on another night in the city.
Evil Dead  Review - 'The Next Chapter' by Jim Steel
Keep repeating to yourself, it’s only a movie, it’s only a movie to avoid the immediate clash. We knew this was coming, since the slew of remakes and sequels have hit the cinema screen. From The Hills Have Eyes to The Texas Chainsaw Massacre*1. The reason we’re all failing to overcome this prospect is that even if the director is hand-picked by the original team, has had an amazing career or is pushed forward in the media as the next Hitchcock, it’ll still be a different perspective of the film that made us familiar with the term ‘Deadite’.
Stop thinking of it as the remake, remember back when they were finding funding for the original. Raimi, Campbell and Tapert had to produce something to show the financiers to get the budget required to make a horror movie. The small film they made entitled ‘Within the Woods’ would rarely be seen by fans (apart from the die-hard ones amongst us that tried to get hold of it, in some form or another) and this would form the basis for their first feature film, ‘The Evil Dead’ which reused a good fifty percent of the ideas from WIW, with some so good they even ended up in the final cut of ‘Evil Dead II’….
As the films progressed, certain ideas started to overlap, but in a way that allowed the blood splattered trilogy to become circular and stay fixed to its own specific time-line.
So I’ve just scheduled over a week’s worth of posts on a new blog dedicated to stupid drawings I do on twitter. If you fancy looking at them it’s http://youtweetidraw.tumblr.com and the first post goes live midday UK time. Hopefully my arts will improve as a result!
Follow this mans new blog. It will make sense, I swear!
‘Shaun of the Dead’ and ‘Hot Fuzz’ are two of my all time favourite films, it would be sacrilege to neglect the release of the first trailer for the final instalment of ‘The Blood and Ice-cream Trilogy’. This is something that I have been anticipating for years and the release of the trailer…
I agree *nods head faster than the speed of light* I’m secretly hoping that Edgar Wright gives us an almost nostalgic trip…I can already see the nods to Carpenter!