This starts with bluegargantua posting "We No Speak Americano" (http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=iANRO3I30nM). If you've been reading my music entries you'll note that this song has appeared before this summer and again just at the beginning of September. So of course I want to listen but you really can't listen. You have to watch. Go ahead, I'll wait. The little bit at the end that I think is sign language is particularly neat.
What we have here is a brilliant pairs hand-dance by Suzanne Cleary and Peter Harding who perform as Up & Over It - I'll link to their page in a moment, be patient - and bill themselves as Irish dancers. Well, that's not like any Irish dancing I've ever seen, so off I go to check them out. First off I get "3 Little Words"(http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-6XefFBAPhs - again, you really have to watch not just listen) and I see that yes there's definitely Irish dance roots here, combined with a very modern athletic stage sense and music.
Then I notice "Hand Dance" (http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=6s51aD0_HMk) a little short-story film built around a routine they do. Similar to We No Speak it's mostly done on tabletop but rather than a pairs hand-dance to the music it's a hand dance done to the rhythm of life, of activity, of the body.
Watching this was startling, and painful. I felt like I was watching myself, around age 10-12. Some people say that their life has a soundtrack, or that they hear music. I don't; instead I feel rhythm. A beat. Life has this beat and everything, from walking to breathing to the rustling of newspapers is part of it. When I first found this rhythm I started doing the things that Peter does in this film - I tapped and drummed and banged incessantly. I wanted to express and be and do this rhythm, all the time. The rhythm that Suzanne uses when she first throws down the newspaper is one I hammered a hundred times a week on my school desktops.
If you know me you'll know that I don't do this anymore. I spent a lot of time being yelled at, primarily by my parents and also by teachers who wanted me to stop that constant banging. I remember the feeling of being able to express myself by the beat when I couldn't say words, and also the feeling of having my hands grabbed and held down by angry adults. The nicest thing anyone said was that maybe I should take up drumming, a suggestion my parents vetoed anyway. But that missed the point. I didn't want to drum someone else's beat, using proper sticks on a proper rubber pad, measured out in duration by someone else's dictates for when to stop and when to begin and what feelings to have. I wanted to use my hands and my body to bang out the pulse of my life, the little stories and emotions of everyday moments. Seeing Cleary and Harding doing just that so well... it's a hard emotional knot to swallow.
You should definitely visit their YouTube channel http://www.youtube.com/upandoverit#p/a/f/1/6s51aD0_HMk
This next bit is MizA's fault. I don't remember what video mash she sent me but as is the distraction miracle of YouTube I soon found myself wandering around the multitude of video mashes and what should I find but an absolute treasure trove of DJ Schmolli mashes. Allow me to share a few of my favorites. It shouldn't be that big a surprise that most of these mash metal with pop, which seems to be Schmolli's forte.
Korn vs The Cure in "Coming Undone Lullaby". The video itself isn't all that remarkable but it's a great juxtaposition of thundrous hard-edged Korn with poor little emo boy Robert Smith.
Bullet for My Valentine's speed-metal "Scream Aim Fire" slowed down and mixed into a Lady Gaga pop wonder track. The video artist BorisB does a good job of beat-matching the visuals.
Peter Schilling's 80s classic "Major Thom" was itself a response to David Bowie. Here he's got company in Beyonce and Slim Thug. The mix mostly uses Beyonce's voice but it's paced and pitched in a way that anyone who grew up listening to Major Thom will instantly get. Unfortunately there's no actual video for this one, which is a shame.
BorisB is back at work on another of Schmolli's speed-metal mashes. This time it's metal from Kreator against Eve and Alicia Keys. The music is playing up certain parallels between these two artists that you wouldn't initially think are there and the video helps.
I included this one because it's a hoot - it's DJ Schmolli recording himself and a friend live in his own studio performing an acoustic version of his Chris Isaak/Billy Idol mash called "Wicked Wedding."
Next time we'll be back to more usual fare.