Categories
Music Videos

New Music and Video: Cloud Track

Sometimes experimentation crosses boundaries. Historically I have divided much of my literary, audio, and visual/video work categorically to allow for sense-making and efficiencies in output. This has been machine-like and in some ways has kept me from going further into the “interdisciplinary” realms many artists work within. Last year’s videos Boulder River Aphorisms, Oceanic Triptych, and Thorough Water all combined some of the approaches listed above, but I have never looked at my experimental music/audio work connecting with video so fluidly. Bring in the “music video” concept, and some new hardware technology, and I’ve started to explore a little beyond my previous works.

Below is “Cloud Track,” which is a “song” created for a video. The music uses no field recordings, though that is something I hope to do with whatever I work on next; instead utilizing samples and instruments from digital libraries. The video footage is from some time-lapses I took recently on San Juan Island. Even the most abstract moments of the “Cloud Track” video are derivative from that footage, using some diffusion blending and my typical manipulation of brightness and contrast settings. It’s clearly an extension of my GIF work, as well (surprising? not surprising?).

As for the audio? I’ve added it to Bandcamp, and as stated there, it’s “[m]y first foray into leaving field recordings for digital libraries of samples and instruments. Inspired by a couple of time-lapse videos recording in the San Juan Islands, and the music of Gas and Einst├╝rzende Neubauten.

I’m proud to say it’s available in 1440p, too–something I intend to do with all my upcoming short videos. Enjoy!

Categories
My Poetry My Publications

A poetry collection both horrific and pastoral: Green Axes is now available!

My second full-length, printed book has appeared.

I am excited to announce the release of my next poetry publication Green Axes! Thanks to Red at Alien Buddha Press for agreeing to work with me on the poems and the overall structure of the book. As the title of this post suggests, these poems are derived from shadow and expanse. They are horrific and they are pastoral, sourced from a handful of local meditations and remote travel episodes.

You can read some of the poems from Green Axes in this Alien Buddha showcase.

The book is available to order via Amazon.

Some history.

This has been a long time coming. I first wrote these poems while living in the Greenhouse, the same apartment I wrote the poems in my six-part Construction series. Pondering the intersections of stasis and outward movement (pre-pandemic, no less!), I came up with several sequences of works that captured both confessional sentiment and a more tempered, objective experience. I intentionally approached these poems through a lens of horror and a tongue of cynicism, though I think neither captures the full range of the inevitable language.

An amassing of poems, a pseudo-collection. I released the predecessor, Green Axis, which is available for free (via open license), and immediately felt the need to gut this scope, this range, and carve it into something more precise, an embodiment of the zone I was seeking to know. The editing process became the next landscape and captured what I originally felt in the poems. Green Axes represents those hacked and chopped actions and processes and is the true collection, the core.

I have never really felt confident about a home for this collection. I set the poems aside but held them as a weight or lure in the digital archive–this feels long ago. Alien Buddha appeared with aligned aesthetics, more so than previously. And now here we are.

On another note, these poems were written before the poems in Of Spray and Mist, so seeing their release also comes with a healthy dose of bafflement regarding texture and the inward identity contained in any writing. Time is that moment of the horrific, that strange reflection, I suppose! In tandem and in conjunction, I feel the books rest well with one another: they both represent a couple (but not all) key facets of my writing and reveal values, interests, and (on a simpler note) different styles that I have practiced as an active writer.

I’m overjoyed to see this new collection come to fruition.

Categories
Music

Sound: The Untitled Coffee Pot

In anticipation of some inbound sonic hardware, I’ve started fooling around, once again, with Ableton and some of my “field recordings.” In this case, the field in question was a kitchen, and the recording is of a coffee pot. Classic, no? My ongoing observations and curiosities of EQ and other audio properties/manipulation, by way of video tutorials galore, has allowed me to expand my capacity to create very strange sounds indeed. Ideally these will go somewhere, when the hardware mentioned above arrives, and the scale of the sounds will also grow.

Categories
Images

Photos: Memory Forms and Further Forms

The following are two sets of self portraits I took while on San Juan Island last month. This was the first time I created a low-budget photography studio, and the first time I ritualized photography concerning the physical human body as the main theme/subject. As explored below in Memory forms, movement accompanied each of the forms (or poses) that I created and worked through. The forms themselves remain secret, a language that was used to inform the project but not define the output to the external viewers.

In the second sequence, Further Forms, I have created various forms of amalgamations of the Memory Forms, using some fairly basic blending techniques. The resulting abstract forms were the result of an inquiry on the forms within photography’s editing process.

Categories
Book Reviews

A Double Review of Song Cave Titles

A couple of new books, both fantastic, are now out via The Song Cave.

They are: A Better Place is Hard to Find by Aaron Fagan and Rough Song by Blanca Varela, translated by Carlos Lara.

I have reviewed them in a Harper’s-esque double feature via North of Oxford.

Categories
Biography Film Gaming

Movies and Games of 2020

Consumption and immersion. The pandemic upped the ante on the screen experiences. Add on a new VR kit and there were many new worlds in my life this year. Here are the best. I’ve included the 8s, 9s, and 10s in both category (movies and games), and it does seem like my interests continue to both expand and refine each year.

Categories
Biography Music

Music of 2020

I listened to 1,098 albums this year. I know this because I obsessively track all the music I listen to, and I mostly focus on listening to full albums. This is something I’ve been doing for years now, and it’s clear the music train just isn’t going to quit. What I find profound in one year I intentionally listen to a second time the following year. “Profound” is pretty arbitrary, much like a five star scale, and so I’ve limited my analyses of any given album to a binary approach: an album is either profound and exciting or, well, not. Here’s a list, for the curious, of all the albums I identified as profound for this year (out of that 1,098, there’s a total of 322, which includes the unlisted 2004’s Madvillainy in honor of the late MF Doom). The list is in alphabetical order by the artist’s name.

Categories
Biography Book Reviews

Books of 2020

I read a lot this year. 130 books to be exact. Many of them were amazing. Most were informative and educational. They’ve set me off on many new paths as a reader–arguably more new paths than any other time in my adult life. Could the pandemic be to thank for this surge? Perhaps. I also think there’s been some major shifts in my life recently that have inspired me to go further and understand more about the many perspectives that surround us. And audio books. The Libby app has never been so approachable and wide-reaching. Being able to read while commuting and hiking has been a marvelous gift.

In any case, here is the list. The top section are my “five star” books (as per Goodreads) and after that are the rest.

Categories
Book Reviews

A New Review: A Grave is Given Supper by Mike Soto

I have a review in the latest Rain Taxi print edition. This one is for Mike Soto’s A Grave is Given Supper. Order a copy of Rain Taxi here.

Categories
Images

Memory Forms Preview

I have taken some time to work with a new camera setup at the Whiteley Center at Friday Harbor Labs. A new project has emerged: Memory Forms. Here is a preview image from the experience:

Memory Forms 1

Categories
GIF

Whiteley Center GIF Bundle Released!

Here at the Whiteley Center on San Juan Island, I have had time to focus on literary, audio, and video works.

I have completed what is definitely the final GIF sequence of the year, which I’ve labeled at the Whiteley Center GIF Bundle. Check it out on this page here.

Categories
GIF Images

GIFs Wrap-Up for the Year

I have just posted a large collection of large GIFs, created to round out the final days of the calendar year. This bundle, as I’m calling it, contains the aquatic and the natural, continued. It is a gentle extension of the most recent GIFs posted recently.

In the near future, I intend to create more abstract video works that will be shared in video form. This includes GIF images, but displayed in repetition. I hope that this method will make the works more accessible and retain their size and scope. This work will most likely commence in early 2021.

Categories
Videos

Twin Falls Video

Some of the footage I carve the GIFs out of tends to be mammoth and beautiful in long form. I was inspired to make this silent video from the Twin Falls of the Cascades outside Seattle by the ambient elegance and power of Ana Roxanne’s amazing albums, Because of a Flower and ~~~. The homages to water are pleasantly always.

Categories
Domestic Travel Images

Photo – Precipice

This black and white image was taken in the Sonoran Desert at the Organ Pipe National Monument in December, 2020.

Categories
Book Reviews Friendships My Poetry My Publications

Of Spray and Mist Review – Joshua Lew McDermott

I’m very grateful for Joshua Lew McDermott’s Of Spray and Mist review for Line Rider Press. Joshua looped in my naturalism and librarianship in a way that elevates the book and pushes it further. Many thanks, Joshua!