Archive for January, 2012

Bandits on film

On Thursday half of us were feeling pretty hungover, so we decided it would be a good idea to shoot a live video of our song – Dirty Ape.

Thanks to Flashflood Film and Video for filming and editing.

We’re still working on writing material so as to improve our sets, and let us play longer sets. and hopefully we will be recording an EP at some point over the next month or so to send off to some festivals this summer.

Sunday, January 29th, 2012 Beijing Bandits, Stuff I've Done No Comments

GloPe – Final Performances

Today was crunch time for our Global Perspective performances. I was performing in my project – CCACT – with Reece, Ben, Rory, and Gary, and also performing in Nat’s JamCam project. I also volunteered to be a last second participant in Danny’s evolutionary music project.

CCACT – The Coroner’s Court of the Australian Capital Territory.

First off I must apologise for the big delay in updates on this project – I didn’t have access to video editing software while I was in Devon over Christmas, and fell too far behind with the backlog. I still have some additional 10+ hours of footage past the video’s I’ve already put up, so hopefully I’ll have time to edit them down into a ‘making of’ video at some point.

thanks to Kai for shooting the video!

Also check out Simon’s video for a different angle on things.

I’m quite pleases with the performance on the day, though it definitely wasn’t the best version of the piece we have played – however this difference in quality is an innate characteristic of improvisational music. The only part which I felt particularly detracted from it was my saxophone being out of tune at the beginning – this was due to a rushed setup time, and me not checking everything was set up properly as well as I should have. I fixed this early in the piece, but it weakened the introduction of the piece.

Part of the reason I feel the piece seemed less good than previous practices was that we were all playing it relatively safe in regards to changes, in order to lessen the chances of the piece collapsing.

I think Andre stepping in and affecting the piece was interesting (you don’t see this happening in Kai’s video, check out Simon’s video for that bit) as we didn’t stumble greatly over the change, despite his input being a technically invalid instruction. While it did work, we feel it didn’t hold with the purpose of the performance – being a very considered group composition – as he didn’t know the language of the mat, so couldn’t make changes based on what he wanted to happen, merely making a change to see what would happen.

I’m looking forward to carrying on this project and seeing where it evolves from here – hopefully adding more to the system until we can play a piece that is a reasonable length for a set without too much repetition.

Jam-Cam

I found performing in this project very interesting. along with the challenge of working with very restricted sample sources, I had never performed with Ableton Live in a a truely live sense before, and I found figuring out how to set up control surfaces to allow for easy and intuitive manipulation of the piece very interesting. I’m not certain I set them up as well as I could have, but the system definitely worked well enough, and I very much enjoyed the performance.

The audience interaction element of the piece was a lot more effective than I expected it to be, despite spending an additional half hour shortly before the performance tweaking the effects the audience would have access to, making sure none of them would create a too jarring effects, which they did sometimes in earlier practices when used without careful consideration. I’d be interested in exploring this interactive element further – particularly in seeing whether it works as well with a less musician-heavy audience.

Check out Nat’s writeup on the performance on her website.

Evolution

Danny’s last second implementation of his evolutionary music project was really fun to take part in, though it would have benefited from some rehearsals to iron out some of the communication issues that turned up in the piece. It did end up with a very nice progressive vibe to it, and I hope it continues to evolve as a project.

Yeah! Good way to end this long blog post, I feel – on a bad joke.

Friday, January 20th, 2012 Global Perspectives, Stuff I've Done, Uni No Comments