Archive for:February, 2008

Plainview’s Brother in Pitch: Jonny Greenwood’s Score for ‘There Will Be Blood’

February 27th, 2008

Jonny Greenwood               Bowling Pins Blood

Jonny Greenwood’s score for There Will Be Blood. Tense, massed and corrosive, in constant nervy tremolo, at times loping in Bartoky pizzicato. It’s what few scores are today: a fully-developed character, without which the movie simply wouldn’t be what it is. An integral voice as important as setting, protagonists, pacing, plot.

From the start, with that slow pan from hill to quarry, it shivers the screen in trumpeting discord. The tone for the entire movie’s set — acid green and always on the cusp of exploding into violence, unresolved & shaking, sonically begging for resolution. Which Daniel Plainview brings with bowling pin in the final frames.

Can you imagine the film without the score? I can’t. And with modern film I almost always can — most scores are superfluous at best, at worst pandering to some misguided notion of a film audience dependent on treacly cues in the form of piano arpeggi or string crescendo to decide how to feel.

Here, Greenwood’s score is about the only thing — aside from Paul Dano in a few scenes, and Dillon Freasier, the child who plays H.W. — that consistently stands up to Daniel Day-Lewis’ obsessed, possessed presence for sheer force & focused savagery. For every shot of oil-masked Day-Lewis staring at a burning derrick, wild-eyed with halfgrinning greed, face pooling out of black like some mug out of a Caravaggio canvas, there’s an equal passage where Greenwood’s score howls out of silence with just as much awful glee.

Whether or not Greenwood composed the music specifically for the film is immaterial to me (He was denied an Oscar nomination because parts of the score come from his pre-existing piece “Popcorn Superhet Receiver”). What matters is that it colludes with and bears up the film as much as do its leads, and helps deliver it home as the mesmerizing, ugly, monomaniacal life study it is.
C. Way/ © 2008
Jonny Greenwood – There Will Be Blood

[posted by: C Way at 1:37 AM]

[file under: Music]

Photograph of Audrey with Doves

February 24th, 2008

Photograph of Audrey with Doves

Language arcs away to white

Curves with soft fluttering
White soft arc
And then is arcing 

	Like her soft jawline
Gracing down from earlobe
  and arc-sweeping up to chin

		Like paralleling
Proud bowing arc
 Of dove-white 
  Soft dove-breast 

Arcing gone
		      To two soft white dovings

C. Way/ © 2008
(The Audrey Hepburn Photo)

[posted by: C Way at 9:36 PM]

[file under: ABOUT ART ||| Ekphrasis]
1 Comment

‘Kohina’ Means White Noise — Streaming Old-School Video Game Music

February 23rd, 2008



This, the little silver niche.

Draw around yourself curtains of
bleep, 8-bit hymns &
sine wave chorales.

You can shake yourself
til your gears wobble and clink;
wave your Lost-in-Space tube-arms
to the blocky beats.

These are the noises of our lives now;
our children will program robo-robins
to pitch their warbles
to metallic scratches.

These are the murmurs of the great silver expanse.

These are noises of death & of
bustling binary fertility.

[posted by: C Way at 8:14 PM]

[file under: Music]

Captions: ‘Oven Bird’

February 12th, 2008

oven bird

Oven Bird

O happy 

		Secreting yourself 
		    away in 
	chewy bole-bubble, 

Peep from 
                   wriggle out & meet
           Cooling air like
biscuit newly risen,

      and like crab, like snail, 
  like bee,

         Build your cell and


seal well

C. Way/ © 2008

[posted by: C Way at 11:09 PM]

[file under: Ekphrasis ||| misc]

SnailShell – Antony & The Johnsons

February 11th, 2008

Snail shells are homes — always in-progress, always excrescing, always spiralling & nautilising outwards homes — for the artists, musicians, songs, poems, writers, people, places, planets, plums that I regularly burden with gush.

At least this way all the shameless enshrining can be contained.

Think of them as cockle shells built for endless barnacling.

Antony Hegarty

Banshee Birth

At Town Hall I wished
His cover of Cohen’s “The Guests”
Would never end.

And then he had us all hum —
To feel the ghost behind our heads.
& in our necks.

The massed chest-drones were
Soft yellow fibers
Being braided through everyone.

A year later,
At the Warsaw in Brooklyn
He talked about being rapt
Before old videos of Otis

And when Antony sang
He’d seize moments, notes,
And shake them into endlessness
Just like Otis:

With fearlessness
With tender madness
With grinning pain

So again come ghosts:
He wrings their necks
In exorcising vibrato

Just as he calls them forth:
The banshee birth
Antony & The Johnsons Cds

[posted by: C Way at 10:20 PM]

[file under: Music]
1 Comment