Movies with a musical ear
From modern classical compositions heralding from Iceland via Argentina, to long-lost jazz cornet improvisations and the more modern, dystopian creations of acclaimed UK band Massive Attack, the synesthetic illusion to being able to ‘see’ what we can hear is a concept often explored by contemporary visual artists.
Let yourself feel : The light by Esteban Diacono
Initially conceived as an experiment in music and sound visualisation and incorporating the concept of synaesthesia, this delicate painterly composition perfectly encapsulates the Icelandic classical music it seeks to animate. A rare example of moving image created from code, where the software remains a tool used to create an artwork, as opposed to a straight demo of what the software can do in the right hands. The difference being that you do not need to understand computer programming to appreciate the beauty of the final piece.
Let Yourself Feel : The light / Esteban Diácono / Argentina / 2009 / 03:37
Conversation pieces by Joe Tummer
A unique sitting-room musical, in which a domestic argument between a long-suffering but ultimately loving couple is lip-synched to the sounds of a long lost Rex Stewart jazz cornet composition. A wonderfully surprising and enchanting short film, where the improvised jazz soundtrack provides both storyline and dialogue and the director’s love of music is prevalent throughout. You can even download the dialogue script at the film’s website, which was initially used to workshop and perform the piece, then eventually dropped in favour of the music alone.
Conversation Piece / Joe Tumner / UK / 2010 / 7mn
Atlas Air by Edouard Salier
French director Salier’s monochrome dystopia is an impressive follow-up to a commissioned music video he created for ‘Splitting the Atom’, a track taken from Massive Attack’s recent album ‘Heligoland’. More short film than music video, singer Robert Del Naja’s lyrics physically drive the narrative forward. A creature, part-rabbit, part-lion yet strangely humanoid, bounds through the urban streets, illuminated by X-ray neon signs and halogen street lamps. At first, we don’t know if he is being pursued or on the prowl for prey, yet his gleaming red eyes betray a clear sense of foreboding. An online exclusive recently created for an EP released for the benefit of the Warchild charity.
Atlas Air / Edouard Salier / Massive Attack / France / 2010 / 05:25