the tuba and the frog.

i’m posting an end-of-the-month progress report at the end of the month said progress report is meant to represent. when was the last time that happened? it feels a little funny to be on time again.

a few things to mention about this one.

the initial idea was to have the intro be one of those real-time in-studio music videos, but i haven’t yet got around to making another one of those (the progress report itself addresses how it almost-but-didn’t-quite happen).

the trade-off is, there’s some footage of a few unreleased songs being broken down a little on the mixing board. i haven’t shot any video of that sort of thing in a long time. in the past, i was limited to shooting so you could see my face but not my hands, or doing it the other way around. to get everything in the frame, i needed to place the camera far enough away that the sound suffered.

now i have two little flip cameras instead of one, allowing me to shoot two angles at once. for about five seconds i toyed with the idea of showing the mixing segments in split-screen, but i thought it might be a little easier on the eyes and brain if i just cut back and forth between the two angles at the appropriate times. so i stuck with that approach.

there were other songs i meant to include some footage of, and i would have, if i hadn’t run out of recording time on the cameras halfway through and then been too lazy to set everything up again for the second go-round. probably better not to reveal too many secrets before their time anyway.

the skewed public domain film content comes from three shorts this time, all of them about as different from one another as possible.

of the three, the 1903 silent version of alice in wonderland has to be the most interesting. the print is in terrible shape. the “restoration” i’ve seen isn’t much better than what’s here, aside from featuring some colour tinting not present in my black and white copy. flawed as it is, there are some pretty cool images there. i like the bit when alice encounters the deck of cards — especially when they start chasing her. a strange, sobering thought: every person involved in any aspect of making the film is now dead, even down to the children who play the walking cards.

watching it now is a little like opening a time capsule.

elliott, true to his word, made it clear he wasn’t coming back until he got a brand new intro song. i did what i had to do and got a few of the other guys to help me out. in a show of appreciation, after turning in a number of pretty laid-back segments and threatening to turn into a music critic, elliott responded to claims that he’d lost his edge by getting back to some of the good old-fashioned bitterness he used to let loose with when these video progress reports were in their infancy. i think this might even be the most confrontational work he’s ever done in front of the camera.

what he’s got in store for future videos is anyone’s guess. i figure as long as i give him a new theme song every few months, i should be able to keep him happy.

and i forgot to credit the snippet of “lose my breath” by my bloody valentine that shows up around the halfway point. i’d go back and fix that, but i don’t feel much like waiting another three hours for the video to process all over again, and then another two for it to upload here. apologies to kevin shields and bilinda butcher.

on an unrelated note, i reactivated my facebook page a week ago so i could tell people CDs were available again at the usual places, since i’m pretty sure most of my contacts there aren’t regular visitors here. it took about five minutes to remember why i spent four months facebook-free. once i finish sending a few more private messages i’m getting rid of that shit all over again and staying away until the next album is finished.

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