“SHOUT” — Tears for Fears [♬] [throwback]

•November 20, 2021 • Leave a Comment

Going out to anyone who has shouted and made known what was in their heart above all else!!

The Noble Onion Ring Reviewer

•September 9, 2021 • Leave a Comment

There is an Instagram account dedicated solely to the humble fried onion ring. The anonymous purveyor of these savory morsels is (I think the cat snuck out of the bag awhile ago) none other than breakout Kiwi singer-songwriter, Lorde (@onionringsworldwide).

Sshhh, it’s still a funny fun secret 😜 Today’s new entry came as a welcomed surprise to all of her fans in-the-know, and all I have to say is, “Feeling Good on a Wednesday, ya ya ya!”

It is a quirky side project for a globetrotting performer to have, which makes it one of the more interesting accounts to follow in a sea of shameless narcissism and freebooting.

Album available @ https://music.apple.com/us/album/solar-power/1572940891

Anonymity intact… The album cover was meme friendly for a hot minute, so this is no disrespect in any form of tall poppy syndrome, Lorde’s aight. Here are two funnies and something a clever minecrafter made anyway:

Not really a secret but far less known is that Lorde just released another album, TE AO MĀRAMA, a 5-song companion piece to SOLAR POWER, sung entirely in te reo Māori, the indigenous language of Aotearoa New Zealand (https://lorde.lnk.to/TeAoMarama) and all proceeds are going to two NZ-based charities — Forest and bird and Te Hua Kawariki Charitable Trust.

“I was writing an album about the spiritual power of the natural world, specifically in the context of where we’re from, and I realised; oh, there’s a word for this – it’s kaitiakitanga” (a concept broadly meaning guardianship). ~ Yelich-O’Connor aka Lorde

Full story about the project @ https://thespinoff.co.nz/atea/09-09-2021/lorde-interview-maori-lyrics-solar-power/

A Quiet Outage [F]

•April 12, 2018 • Leave a Comment

The radio informed me that there were over fourteen thousand lightning strikes last night across Auckland, Northland. Wind speeds reached two hundred kilometers per hour in some areas, and power is still out to over ninety thousand homes and commercial businesses. Mine went out yesterday around 8 p.m.

The house was a little chilly today.

Dad suggested we go see a movie to kill time, before it got dark. We saw A QUIET PLACE, and we both agreed it was well told. When I came home the power was restored to the area, so it was out for roughly 27 hours. Not so bad, especially given what other parts of the country endured. I didn’t really want to gripe about the weather though, just wanted to have a written record of a moment, because it was nice. Doing my nightly/early morning writing under candlelight. Listening to Newstalk ZB radio the following day and then deciding to randomly see a movie with dad with an audience that was on edge throughout (hehe receptive much) and who were probably without power as well. Then coming home to reheat leftovers. No power got me feeling nostalgic, I guess. Used to make blanket forts in my room on rainy days and use the leftover sheets to cover the windows. Sit in the dark and listen to music on my mother’s Sony Walkman. Her mixtapes and the radio. And this funny thing used to happen on rainy days too, when evening came I’d run around the house looking at every windowsill, because I’d always find a small crocodile somewhere, waiting for me to gobble up. Thanks, Dad.

Links about the power situation: http://www.radionz.co.nz/news/national/354736/as-it-happened-storm-aftermath-thousands-still-without-powerhttp://www.newshub.co.nz/home/new-zealand/2018/04/weather-live-updates-auckland-wakes-up-to-massive-storm-damage.html

Grand Theft Auto New Zealand, Bro

•June 20, 2015 • Leave a Comment

Nu16Qa0

Kiwi GTA V fan and modder, Andre Hema-Kani, went and modified a city rife with textures of New Zealand companies and local brands. Waipukurau resident and father-of-two, Andre hasn’t made the mod public yet, but plans to at some point in the future, because apparently people want to play it:

“I pretty much wanted to turn the game into somewhere that reminded me of home. Driving around, seeing familiar things. It was more for myself than anyone else, but I’ve had heaps more interest than I expected. I only put it on Reddit to see if my gaming friends were into it, and if people in New Zealand would actually download it.” ~ Andre

Someone did attempt this back in 2008, a Karori teenager named Stacy O’Callaghan, 17, but the police were investigating if they could charge the young man under the Police Act for using the New Zealand Police uniform and car livery. Not sure what the outcome to that story was, but Andre, should he make it public, is mindful of the associated copyrights; “I don’t want to get into trouble,” he said.

As for the gang patch; down here in the Southern Hemisphere, the street gangs look intimidating as fuck — eat your heart out L.A. — Mongrel Mob portraits by photographer Jono Rotman:

…I bet they smell like mothballs.

World Maps Without New Zealand

•February 1, 2015 • Leave a Comment

NO NZ WORLD MAPS

As a Kiwi, and as other Kiwis will attest — it goes without saying — we get excited when we hear or notice anything New Zealand related on the telly or in a movie. Not sure why that is exactly, but we do. So naturally, the same thing happens when New Zealand isn’t mentioned, or rather, excluded from things we believe it shouldn’t be excluded from. Case in point — ‘World’ Maps without NZ:

Time Zone Deviants, Part I -- The strangest time zones in the world map

The article mentions the unusual and interesting Chatham Standard Time Zone but doesn’t think the country it belongs to is important enough to be shown.

Thanks, Obama.

Where do the wealthiest 1% live

Worried about shale gas and fracking? Don’t be. It won’t happen in New Zealand:

World Shale Gas Resources

Bees of New Zealand, sorry guys, you’re on your own.

Bees of New Zealand, sorry guys, you’re on your own.

Way back in 2006 we went to Swarovski Crystal World in Wattens, Austria and we saw this pretty weak approximation. It’s like after the artist finished labouring over the accuracy of Australia he was sick of the fucking thing so he just slapped a few crystals down and said “ehh, close enough.” ~ user submitted

Way back in 2006 we went to Swarovski Crystal World in Wattens, Austria

More @ http://worldmapswithout.nz/ And now you have a reason to examine every damn map that comes within your line of sight. You’re welcome!

Rattle Ya Dags – BE YOURSELF!!!

•October 24, 2013 • Leave a Comment

RattleyaDags has an awesome assortment of interesting and inspirational tidbits from some of New Zealand’s most positive role models. I came across this YouTube page totally by chance, and I’m a little angry about that. Was this even promoted anywhere, but more importantly, why did it stop?! I think it’s so cool and a great medium for connecting the Kiwi youth with familiar and influential, positive kiwi thinkers:

Ladi6 (Karoline Tamati) is New Zealand’s premiere vocalist MC, renowned for her energetic live performances, sublime soulful vocals and conscious lyrics. Ladi6 started her musical career as part of New Zealand’s first all-girl hip-hop group Sheelahroc, who supported international acts including The Roots, De La Soul and 50 Cent.

P Digsss (Paora Apera) is the vocalist for drum and bass act Shapeshifter. Shapeshifter have been heralded as a musical phenomenon for their ground breaking live shows and unique blend of heavy soul/drum and bass. The popular act have recently released their fourth studio album, The System Is A Vampire, to critical and commercial success.

Nick Dwyer is a writer, broadcaster and TV presenter. He’s been on music TV presenting on Max TV, Juice TV, M2 and C4. A respected music journalist, Nick also wrote, presented and co-directed music travel series Making Tracks. He has been on the radio for 15 years and currently hosts the breakfast show on George FM.

Shavaughn has been a fixture on television screens, both here and overseas, since she was 18. After finding fame on kiwi kids institution What Now, Shavaughn moved to the UK where she was one of the hosts of Saturday morning TV show SMTV LIVE.

Both Clarke Gayford (MORE FM, The Edge, Channel Z, C4, George FM) and Matt Gibb (U live, STUDIO 2, Squirt) are youth personalities in their own right, who above all else both have positive attitudes and helpful advice.

Danielle Cormack hit our screens on television soaps Gloss and Shortland Street, and has gone on to star in dozens of films, TV dramas and stage productions making her one of New Zealand’s most respected and well-known actors. She recently appeared in the Australian television drama Wentworth.

Jeremy Elwood is an award-winning stand up comedian who has garnered critical and popular acclaim for his no-holds-barred style, and intelligent, relevant material. He can be seen regularly at The Classic comedy club, writes the popular Political Animal blog for 3news.co.nz and appears on comedy series 7Days.

Bring this back! These are awesome and if I had a monogamous attention span I suppose I could post one of these videos everyday. I’m not going to do that.

Heaps more @ the YouTube page.

‘Southern Hospitality’ in POV [F]

•August 22, 2011 • 3 Comments

HI READER! I haven’t posted much about my own personal escapades in a while, so here are a few pictures from a recent trip me and my fam took to the south island of New Zealand.

I felt refreshed escaping the demands of an insomniac city. There is so much to discover and places to explore. I had a great time and I also had some wonderful things to frame and capture with my dusty old camera. Just to prove I’m still alive and kicking, here are a few POV snaps of my life:

…I MISS IT SO! Each location has its own name and story, but I’ll leave that up to you to discover when you get yer butt down here! Let’s plan a trip together soon yo!

“I Ain’t Afraid Of No Fluff”

•June 14, 2010 • Leave a Comment

I noticed this while skimming through the local paper. I personally think it has WIN written all over it:

If there’s something strange, In your neighborhood, Who you gonna sue? – Fluffbusters!

The Queen Street Sing Sing [F]

•March 9, 2009 • Leave a Comment

An extraordinary time spent with friends and family. Nothing but good vibes and happy conversation. No one more happy than my mother, reunited with her uncle, George Telek, lead vocolist of the performance group playing that night, and their second time meeting in New Zealand since WOMAD 1998. This was a pre-concert get-together at Coyle Park, Point Chevalier:

Catherine Piana Uramete & George Telek

The Queen Street Sing Sing is the biggest musical party of Auckland Festival 2009’s opening weekend. Sing Sing is a series of concerts that started in the mid-90s, bringing together accomplished singers musicians and dancers from throughout Oceania (Papa New Guinea, West Papua, Torres Strait Island, Australia, NZ)

“Sing Sing is a unique state of the art concert performance, presenting traditional, contemporary, choral and stringband music with accompanying visuals and aural soundscapes to capture a sense of place, to take the audience on a journey through the landscape and texture of both urban and grass roots village life.”
~ David Bridie

I knew the concert was going to be great, but it exceeded my expectations. The music was loud, the street was packed with many people from diverse walks of life, and the performance throughout all the songs incorporated different songstyles from different cultures; Maori to Aboriginal to Papua New Guinea.

I found myself looking over the crowd often to see what sort of impact the music was having. Intrigue is the word I would use to describe what I saw, and not once did it seem like the audience was dissipating.

There were a group of young Punjabi guys jumping up & down in front of me; two women jiggling to the drum of their own beat, and some crazy fella at the front with his hands in the air. He must have been slightly out-of-it because before the band even came on stage he was dancing to white noise. Crazy cracker.

After the event and backstage, everyone was pleased to watch a group of young Japanese students who obviously enjoyed the concert, singing/chirping a song to the band through the fence barrier. That was cool. The Maori performers and crew did the haka for the guys aswell. Soon after I had to dropoff my little brother because it was getting late.

Back in the city and driving around aimlessly for a parking space, we eventually ended up in the underground casino parking, again for the third time that day. I hate having to walk through the casino to validate the parking ticket. The whole casino vibe makes me sick. Via [a late] Txt-message we learnt the afterparty was not in the city but elsewhere, so soon after validating the ticket we left.

My mother and sister danced with George Telek before he and the band had to leave for their flight to Australia. Our night however continued to the early hours of the morning. All and all it was a great day, from dawn to dawn.

For more information on the music, visit: Wantokmusik

Everything Is A Remix: Part 1

•September 18, 2021 • Leave a Comment

Kirby Ferguson, the Everything Is A Remix guy recently put together and uploaded another video essay, consolidating all he has learned into a comprehensive rundown of our current culture of remixing (TikTok, meme culture, audio sampling), and how that is nothing new:

Most interesting parts for me, and I’m not sure why I’m a nerd for it, was hearing about the battles/breaches of copyright, and how some many artists in the biz are about giving leeway and creating music in good faith, safe in the knowledge of what came before.

Anime Inspired Music Videos: Dua Lipa – Levitating / Salvatore Ganacci – Fight Dirty / Tadpole – Better Days (02) / Ken Ishii – Extra w/ Kōji Morimoto (94)

•September 17, 2021 • Leave a Comment

This is Dua Lipa’s animated MV for Levitating, which clearly pays homage to Naoko Takeuchi’s SAILOR MOON in colour pallet and aesthetic (cheers PC for the heads up!):

A spirited young fighter failing to gain the respect she deserves gets approval from an unlikely ally — an overpowered giant hand, which is normal in an eccentric Swede’s future:

Video resolution sure has come a long way. That reminded me of a band in New Zealand called Tadpole. During the height of the DBZ craze, Tadpole released a MV as homage to the popular anime (or cheeky cash grab). On top of being a genuinely good band, the video was quirky to see (Nu Zeelund anime?! Dafuq?):

Directed by Wade Shotter. Tadpole’s (1994-2006) seventh single from their first album Buddhafinger. During my posters-on-the-bedroom-walls phase, there were band posters plastered on the classroom windows at my college one year that I casually collected after asking random teachers if I could take them. One kid was super pissed at me for that.

Getting back on topic, or rather, some real deal ‘fighting spirit’ anime goodness; Extra is a pumping techno track by Ken Ishii from his 1994 album ‘Jelly Tones’, and the MV is directed by the revered, Kōji Morimoto (AKIRA):

The Matrix Resurrections [movie trailer]

•September 10, 2021 • Leave a Comment

w h a t   i s   t h e   m a t r i x

Radiohead — “If You Say The Word” [♬]

•September 8, 2021 • Leave a Comment

A bounty of material from Radiohead, reissuing Kid A and Amnesiac in celebration of their 21st anniversary comes a new album of unreleased songs: KID A MNESIA

The collection is out November 5 via XL / http://www.kida-mnesia.com

TRACKLIST:

01 – “Like Spinning Plates (‘Why Us?’ Version)”
02 – “Untitled V1”
03 – “Fog (Again Again Version)”
04 – “If You Say The Word”
05 – “Follow Me Around”

 

06 – “Pulk/Pull (True Love Waits Version)”
07 – “Untitled V2”
08 – “The Morning Bell (In The Dark Version)”
09 – “Pyramid Strings”
10 – “Alt. Fast Track”
11 – “Untitled V3”
12 – “Hot To Disappear Into Strings”

“Guiding Light” — Gary James McQueen’s Digital Fashion Show w/ Unreal Engine

•September 6, 2021 • Leave a Comment

The future of digital couture is coming and it is going to be HUGE in terms of advancing all consumer tech, as well as globally shifting entire industries towards sustainable, zero waste manufacturing of supply-and-demand [digital] possessions (fashion and artworks).

Those intangible assets will be valuable, we will want them, and we will want to make them. However long-sighted that statement reads, there are more than a handful of artists and designers currently dipping their reputations into the unbridled and boundless expanse of 3D augmented reality, with even fewer of their experimental creations being, dare I say, tasteful/pleasing to the eye. But we’ll talk more about AR art, Metaverse, and crypto/NFTs at a later date, for now, here is a high-quality render of Gary James McQueen’s digital runway show made entirely using Epic Games’ Unreal Engine 5 (and a glimpse into what your future wardrobe may look like):

2021 Fashion Collection by GARY JAMES MCQUEEN / Soundtrack Composed and Produced by TEHO & Published by HERZBLUT RECORDINGS / ENTER THE VIRTUAL SHOWROOM https://www.garyjamesmcqueen.com

“Going digital opens up more possibilities. Like fabrics that wouldn’t exist in reality, or other things that you’re not able to achieve in real-world fashion,” said Gary James McQueen.

Part of why I think it works is because the humanoid models are distinctively abstract (does not attempt to represent external reality) as opposed to them being photo-real depictions of a real-life person, avoiding that uncanny-valley jank. Unfortunately it also avoids the excitement that real life brings to any and all live shows.

Because we’re all inspired-inspiring-friends here, and because it just tickles that specific fashionista itch of mine, this is Jean Paul Gaultier’s 1995 cyberpunk inspired runway show that many have dubbed “Best Show Ever”

Vogue interviews many of the key players involved. Jean Paul Gaultier, Claudia Huidobro, Carmen Dell’Orefice, and more look back at the innovative tech-meets-punk runway show, detailing some of the event’s most memorable moments.

Another thing to keep you up all night; in 2019 a digital-only dress sold for $9,500. Yeah. The first NFT couture dress ever was created by the Fabricant, a digital fashion company based in Amsterdam:


Last but not least, here is what the next-gen Unreal Engine 5 is capable of:

“Alternate Realities” — the Internet’s Biggest 3D Challenge [animation]

•August 13, 2021 • Leave a Comment

Fantasy and sci-fi nerds, get in here! This is an excellent 3D walk cycle filled with super high quality renders of imaginary worlds. Perfect for anyone looking for an inspirational prompt, or just something to zone out to for a few minutes, or 120.

One month ago, I provided you guys with a simple 3D template and challenged you to create something unique. 2,401 artists pushed themselves, and submitted incredible art. ~ pwnisher

This successful project was initiated by VFX artist and YouTuber Clinton Jones, alumna of Corridor Crew. He has many more render challenges in the works, should you wish to follow his page. This was his base template:

Here is the whooping 2+ HOUR LONG collaborative render it inspired:

For a good time I also recommend Corridor Crew’s VFX Artists React series for anyone who loves learning interesting things to do with visual effects and storytelling techniques.

Brilliant Tokyo 2020 Olympic Games Comeback: Sifan Hassan (Netherlands) — Women’s 1500m

•August 5, 2021 • Leave a Comment

Ethiopian-born Dutch (arrived as a refugee in 2013), Sifan Hassan, fell on the final lap of the 1500-meter first-round heat, but rebounds to win!

Pleanty of cool blink and you’ll miss them moments at the games this year, but that comeback takes the cake. I loved seeing the women’s hammer throw too, the momentum they build before hurling 8.82 lb (4 kg) of metal further than I can throw a tennis ball was insanely impressive. I have to play catch up with many of the events though (downloads here I come).

In other Olympic Games related stuff; seems a lot of athletes love anime, making nods to beloved franchises before, during, and after competitions:

Mexican gymnast Alexa Moreno did her floor routine to the Demon Slayer soundtrack:

Last but not least, if you’ve used Google in the last month you’ve probably seen the icon with the cat? If not, click it! it is a classic JRPG made specifically to commemorate the games in cool pixel style — PLAYDoodle Champion Island Games!!!

It is a Japanese-style role-playing video game designed to celebrate the 2020 Summer Olympics, 16-bit video gaming as well as Japanese folklore and culture.

Real-Life SpongeBob SquarePants and Patrick Discovered On The Ocean Floor

•August 3, 2021 • Leave a Comment

Biologist Christopher Mah was watching a live feed from the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) when he noticed two sea creatures bearing an uncanny resemblance to a pair of beloved animated characters:

“If we can bring positivity and we can make people happy by showing them nature,” Mah told NPR. “Well, that’s what nature has always done for us before.”

Unlike their cartoon counterparts however, the Hertwigia (sponge) and Chondraster (starfish) are not best friends.

“In all likelihood, the reason that starfish is right next to that sponge is because that sponge is just about to be devoured, at least in part,” Mah told NPR.

The Dolls With Attitude (2017) [short film] & More Dolls

•July 16, 2021 • Leave a Comment

While discussing AIR DOLL (2009) with (not Bae Doona) bae, I found by chance this quirky horror-esque short film. Self-contained, funny, and strange, you should watch it:

Writer/Director Naoya Yamaguchi

Oddly enough, a fashion account I follow recently posted several pictures from Moschino’s SS 2021 runway show. It’s certainly different. For no other reason than I saw these related things hours apart from one another; here you go — high-fashion dolls:

Yup… Dudes can be airheaded about things sometimes too you know.

Director Hirokazu Koreeda. Based on manga series Kuuki Ningyo by Yoshiie Gōda

 
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