Posts from 20th August 2003

Aug 03

JENNIFER LOPEZ ‚Äì ‘Baby I Love You’

FT + New York London Paris MunichPost a comment • 284 views

For me, it’s enough that this track rescues the main melody from Musiq’s lackluster ‘halfcrazy’ and implements it beautifully in the pre-chorus bridge. Hell, I’ll even let the obvious vocal Pro-Tooling slide. Ever since JLo took to claiming (in song) that she as multi-media multi-millionaire trend-setting mogul is no different from the Jenny that took the 6 from dance lessons and auditions back to her block every day back in the day, I sighed and rolled my eyes. Every time she gave the Bronx a shout-out or tossed one of Puffy’s shiny baubles aside or struck the down-ass-chick pose in one of her umpteen videos (or movies) (god, those movies), I cringed. And now, after all that primping and pimping, she tosses would-be fans the 4th single from her (shock!) highly successful 3rd album, in a clear attempt to wring out any possible cream and cache the CD — now looking up at the Billboard Top 100 – has left. And, of course, it turns out to be the ‘no-frills’ track that presents the strongest case supporiting Ms. Lopez’s earnest WYSIWYG stance. Stronger than anything involving Jadakiss or Flashdance, at any rate.

Even the video — featuring enough makeupless JLo in-your-pores close-ups to make Jonathan Demme break his camera — favors this somewhat mawkish yearning. It’s less cloying if you turn away during the verses and just focus on the vibe. And the DeBarge windchimes. People! You know what I’m talking about, when a song gets in your soul, and won’t let go… After the nadir that will forever be linked with Ishtar and other cinematic stinkbombs, this serves as a nice pre-Jersey Girl sorbet. (Only 5 / 8 / 11 more months!) (Wait a second — Gertrude Steiney?!?!?)

Chris Gergley, Apartment Series, 1997-1998 C Prints

The Brown WedgePost a comment • 282 views

link Between Davies and Beach Sts in Vancouver there are a series of apartment blocks built between 1950 and 1970, their lobbies gleaming with money and modernist hope, the fonts suggest hope for a future that seemed to gleam from Vancouver until the serial killlers and heroin of the lower east side, the economic downturn of the rest of it, the end of socialised anything courtesy of Gordon Cambell, and the final recognition that it might not all be sunshine.

Maybe it was also Expo 1986 or world class Whistler, or the LA movies, something international that leeched out the Canadianess of it all.

These apartment buildings were swinging singles, married couples on the prowls, newly liberated gay men and young kids doing vague and artistic things for money. Crossing the threshold into field stone, broad carpets, slick wood, gold letters and steel elevators was to own the world for a while, their is an inmutable sadness to the lack of care that marks their and by extension the paradise on the Coast.

The other interesting thing, is how the best work that comes out Vancouver seems to be these huge Cibrachromes and C- Prints. Stan Douglas working penance for Nootka Sound, the implied and sexualized violence of Jeff Wall, the documentary energy of Una Knox .

I think it is because this kind of photograph does very well to show the tension between what is being represented and what is, and Vancouver has not been represented well.

On the one hand

Pumpkin PublogPost a comment • 215 views

On the one hand I think if you’re going to advertise a pub quiz then you should have the bloody pub quiz and not call it off because too few people have turned up, on the other I can see that pubs are businesses first and they’re not going to throw good prize money away on me and my mates. However the one hand is a huge green Hulky fist and the other is a tiny shriveled claw, so the Publog can say fairly straight DO NOT GO TO THE SETTLE INN in Archway. They are chiselers.

OK, do go there on Sunday nights if the music quiz is on because it’s easy and if you’re reading Freaky Trigger you’ll probably win it. You get free shots for each round you win and a bottle of champagne at the end, I believe. The general knowledge quiz that was meant to be on last night works in the same way. The idea is to even the odds between rounds by getting the best teams hammered.

Still we had a good time, not much thanks to the Settle Inn which is a bleak stripped-pine affair and feels empty even when it isn’t. We went on to the Whittington And Cat, an Irish-run pub which boasts a mummified cat. When Tim mentioned the cat I thought ‘bandages’ but no, it’s a hairless, thin cat corpse which looks like it’s made out of beef jerky. Still a superior pub ornament. They also had traditional Irish music playing intermittently, not advertised or anything, just some old boys who took up the pipes every few minutes. A good pub, then, and a happy ending.

It was a documentary called “In Search of Atlantis”

Do You SeePost a comment • 214 views

It was a documentary called “In Search of Atlantis” and it was on Channel 5, and if I say, Yes but look, it featured Alexander Nehamas as a talking head!!, you might still probably insist I was being ironic and a faux populist re my C5 doc-love (yes I also enjoyed the last one in the same slot, on the Seven Wonders of the Ancient World), and that underneath that I’m merely an old-fashioned intellectual snob swayed by nobby names and (famously pro-television) Princeton Professors. OK so here’s the thing: the programme took a cogent idea – the myth of a great and cultured civilisation which fell – and showed who had been attracted to it (inc.Plato, Columbus, Mme Blavatsky and Hitler) (C5 doc = it has to mention Hitler!!), and then taked about the bad as well as the good side of the attraction. It was pretty cheaply made – yes the reconstructions of greek dinner parties when Plato was a child were awkward and silly – but it used stock footage of fabulous Minoan frescoes and Aztec ziggurats and undersea temple ruins (and of Nazi archeological expeditions in search of the lost Ark of the Covenent), and, for the second week in a row, I learnt stuff I totally never knew. Which is the point, right? C5 docs regularly use the “rubbishy” stuff as a bodyguard for the good stuff, turn the ease of the potency of age-old art into an unpicking of the potential failings of the wised-up, wide-open present: “Nonsense (when all is said and done) is still nonsense. But the study of nonsense, that is science.”