July 10, 2010

Around the turn of the millennium Jason Swinscoe of Cinematic Orchestra composed and recorded a brilliant soundtrack for the equally brilliant avant garde 1929 Soviet silent film “Man with a Movie Camera by Dziga Vertov. The film captures a wide range of modern era human and industrial activities through a vast array of cinematic techniques. The soundtrack skillfully melds from lush orchestral music though jazz-rich electronica mood sketches and bursts into frenetic breakbeat jams while always keeping well synched to the film material. The sampled breakbeat loop he used in this excerpt (5)  from “It’s Just Begun” by the Jimmy Castor Bunch is PERFECT with the precise industrial machines spinning and pumping – I love it. If you have time it is well worth watching all of the other excerpts on You Tube which include Muybridge-like slow-motion studies of athletes and horses, panning shots of architecture, dreamy beach scenes with synchronized swimming and aerobics, daily tasks, chaotic organic city street movement and, quite stunningly, in the second half of excerpt 3 he cuts from film stills shown as portraits to the film stock itself with the duplicated portraits lined up, back to the stills and then into the “source” action sequences. An almost stoic looking Babushka is revealed to be speaking intensely. Children are laughing and wondering. Well, I’m trying to convey this to you here but for me the entire film and music pairing are really ineffable.


One Response to “Synthesis”

  1. jungalero1101 said

    I’m definitely interested to see the entire piece/film as a whole. Too bad the DVD was a limited release and now fetches crazy $$ online.

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