This article was originally published in Litro magazine issue 151 - Adrenaline
How do you get from the tritone as "the devil in music" to an audience facing a wall of white noise with smiles on their faces?
“It's amazing, really, how little sound comes out of something you're smashing with all your might”
The adventurous Noizu fans who came to see crackpot noise-makers Hanatarashi (meaning snot-nosed) at Tokyo's Toritsu Kasei Super Loft on August 4th 1985 expected a raucous show. What they didn't expect was a ferocious performance of industrial-grade destruction with a back-hoe bulldozer as the lead instrument. Handed waivers upon arrival that relieved the band of any responsibility for injury, or worse, the audience watched as frontman and HDV operator Yamatsuka Eye burst through the doors of the hall atop the bulldozer.
With percussionist Ikuo Taketani somewhat safely tucked away in the corner, Eye tore through the stage and inflicted brutal punishment on everything nearby, including the literal kitchen sink, while screaming the band's trademark scatological and sexual non-sequitur lyrics. The beleaguered bulldozer held out until Eye put the hoe into the wall. The dozer tipped backwards and gave out, but after pulling off the dozer's cage to hurl across the stage and grabbing a circular saw, the destruction continued with the audience now nervously dodging Eye's fitful saw swings. Surrounded by bent metal, crumbled masonry and the squawking remains of Marshall stacks, with gasoline pouring from the ruined bulldozer, Eye produced, as his grand finale, a molotov cocktail that he'd prepared earlier. This was a touch too dangerous for even this daredevil audience and Eye, confessing later in an interview for Banana Fish Magazine that he got “too excited”, had to be violently subdued by several members of the crowd.
A lovely film I edited in 2016, And Violet, has won the Best Dramatic Feature award at the 2017 Arizona International Film Festival in Tucson - it's world premiere. Additionally, the lead actor, Hana Mackenzie, won the Special Jury Award for Best Performance. I suppose I'm biased, but that's well deserved as she gives a remarkable performance.
There's a good interview with the director Paul Gray here
Follow And Violet here for more information and future screenings.
Rob Burnett made his first break interning for David Letterman in 1985. Working his way up to head writer of Late Show with David Letterman in 1992, he eventually became executive producer. After more than twenty years in television comedy and multiple Emmys, he's on his way to the same success in film, writing and directing the charming and funny Sundance closing-night hit - and now Netflix Original film - The Fundamentals of Caring.
Based on the novel by Johnathan Evison, The Fundamentals of Caring stars Paul Rudd as Ben, a father grieving his tragically lost son, who, in desperation, dives into caregiving for Trevor, played by Craig Roberts, a teenager with Duchenne Muscular Dystrophy.
I sat down with Rob Burnett at the 70th Edinburgh International Film Festival, where the film had its European premiere, to ask him about working with Rudd and Roberts, making death and disability funny, and why he chose Netflix to distribute the film.
Read more at The 405 here
Burning GK Chesterton's classic novel at the stake, with no signs of a penitent heart, in the totally nutty The Man Who Was Thursday. Bohemian group living goes badly for some in Thomas Vinterberg's dark alt-family dramedy The Commune
[read more at The 405]
Name: John Lake. Profession: Doctor of Medicine. Destination: Some Laotian prison, maybe. Film: Jamie M Dagg's frantic thriller River | Arthouse head-trip History's Future tells the story of one man's brain-damage and capitalism's moral-damage
Morally complex mumble-chase and an enigmatic experimental trip inside a damaged mind in two films from my seventh day at EIFF 2016 [read more at The 405]
The beginning of a worldwide cyberwar in Alex Gibney's informative and thrilling documentary Zero Days
Chairman Mao loves the people, he is our guide, to a big, dumb, tomb-raiding ride. Hurrah! Lead us forward to fantasy-adventure Mojin: The Lost Legend
Bloody revenge becomes as difficult as spelling Aberystwyth in great Welsh-language thriller The Library Suicides
Hollywood tragedy Kevin Smith insults Canadians, critics and his own child with horror-comedy that is neither scary nor funny in Yoga Hosers
Didn't think I'd see a film worse than Macbeth Unhinged at EIFF. So, congratulations to Kevin Smith, I guess. Quite the achievement.
Read more at The 405 here
Two films reviewed from the Best of British strand of EIFF 2016
A break-up shake-up comedy that makes you think about every bad relationship you ever had in Brakes
A Welshman, a Scotsman, and an Irish Manic Pixie Dream Girl take a trip to find the punchline to that joke, in the endearing but clumsy drama Moon Dogs
Read more here at The 405
Reviews from the third day of the Edinburgh International Film Festival. Things pick up considerably after a rather mixed start, with two of the most imaginative and precise cinematic visions I've seen in years.
Surreal phone games open up an introverted detective and world of shared fantasy in Aloys | A timid tomboy boxing student faces an inexplicable gendered illness when she becomes a dancing Lioness in The Fits.
Barmy Bard-baiting in Macbeth Unhinged | Tokyo Godfathers but with zombies in Seoul Station | It only takes a camera to crack her mind in The Model
Reviews from the second day of EIFF 2016
Read more at The 405 here
Art & Design
All contributions by Kieran Gosney unless otherwise stated.
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