To the uninitiated, the Japanese anime industry and the culture that surrounds it can seem perplexing at times, to say the least. In the west, when a film or TV show is released directly to video or DVD, its usually a sign of inferior quality or very limited market appeal. Or, in other words, it’s too shit to be shown at the cinema. Plus usually we’re talking about the sort of unoriginal, opportunist, unnecessary sequels that Disney were famous for churning out a few years ago. Jungle Book Two, anyone? God help us.
Following on from last week’s Weapon of Choice post, I’ve been spending some time this morning chatting with Bristol graf legend and one time Banksy collaborator Jer “Lokey” Forceone. Top geezer. Plus he’s kindly said I can share his Flickr page with you guys, so you can check out some more of his work. Enjoy.
It was with some slight trepidation that I sat down to watch Appleseed Ex Machina this weekend; the completely CGI anime is a sequel to the 2004 Appleseed, with both being based on Masamune Shirow‘s classic 1985 manga. Being a fan of the original printed version (and Shirow’s work in general), I found little in the first film beyond it’s impressive visuals to get me excited, sadly.
If any of you have read the extract from my short story Paparazzi, you’ll remember a couple of the characters communicating with each other using something called a ‘Voice-Free Choker’ – a neck band that picks up nerve signals to the larynx and converts them into text or speech. Well, this morning I stumbled across this video at New Scientist of someone demonstrating what appears to be exactly that technology:
Got out and about last night – dropped into “Weapon of Choice” – a live graffiti jam at Mr Wolf’s – a little bar here in Bristol. Couple of drinks, some nice beats and some, erm, entertaining rhymes from Nerdcore rapper MC Nucleuz – all whilst local graf talent Lokey and Cheo busied away making some art. Originally headed down there under the premiss of doing research for a short story I’m writing about near-future AR graf artists, but ended up having too much of a laugh to care about all that. Did fire off a whole bunch of photos though, so check the links below or hit the Flickr slideshow for even more…
I finally got to sit down and watch Michael Aris’ ‘Tekkon Kinkreet’ on Blu-Ray this weekend. Coming to the movie completely cold – not having read Taiyō Matsumoto’s original manga, and knowing little about the production’s genesis, I really enjoyed it. It wasn’t until I sat down to start writing this review and did a little bit of background research online that I discovered the fanboy shit-storm surrounding the film’s release.
Stumbled across this yesterday; cool little clip following one of my favourite Detroit producers Theo Parrish as he wanders the streets of Motor City, recording sounds and ambiances before taking them back to his studio, chopping them up and making beats with ’em on his MPC. Worth checking out: