Angry Robot

Posthumanism at the Box Office

Dude calls Charlie’s Angels: Full Throttle “essentially a post-humanist film” with the sort of against-the-grain bombast that earns a special place in my heart. He’s comparing McG to Kiarostami, for funk’s sake. Unrelatedly, the new Destroyer album is now out, and it sounds like Kurt Weil scored a late-80s videogame, which I’d like to think is post-human as well, if only because it’s so grrrreat to call things post-human.

7 comments on "Posthumanism at the Box Office"

  1. TheAlarmist!!! says:

    Fuck post-humanism, how about post-theoretical-alarmism(s)!How about post-tortured-phrase-constructs-that-only-serve-the-academy? How about the Destroyer album is verbose and irritating? How about dude needs a musical editor. Isn’t that a good idea? Rock types get all high on themselves and actually imagine that every last bit of lyrical and melodic garbage that they’ve come up with in their artistic ivory towers is actually worth hearing or even recording. That’s total bullshit; get someone in there to chop out all the awkwardness, self-indulgence,delusions of grandeur, and (in this case) occasions when a singer tries to sing to many words in too short a period of time, Then you’ve got hott pop music. Songs, really, should all be under two minutes long and should have a ceiling of one hundred words in them.

  2. D says:

    Oh come on. If every band sounded like yours, the world would be a better place?

    Granted the Pitchfork ‘review’ is bullshit but there is something behind it nonetheless. A huge epic string section production implies you think there is a certain weight to your material, yet if those are Casio strings instead… well, self-conscious artifice and such.

    Besides, Bejar has several one- or two-line songs, including “Don’t become the thing you hated” off the latest album. As Nice N Smooth might have said, sometimes he rhymes long, sometimes he rhymes short.

  3. TheAlarmedCursive says:

    Yeah, absolutely, I’m full of shit. I haven’t even heard the whole record. The first few songs I started listening to just drove me nuts though because of that motormouth stuff; it feels really forced and annoying to me in the same way that musical theatre is annoying. It gets to the point where a pop song is no longer an appropriate vehicle for whatever it is you’re trying to communicate. If every band sounded like mine the world would be a truly irritating and upsetting place.
    I just was looking for a way to put forward this idea of the music industry conforming to the practices and conventions of the publishing industry; standardized pricing, multiple formats with varying prices (we could bring back cassettes!), better margins for artists, musical editors to cut out the bullshit or “correct” things, and other stuff. I like the idea of a musical editor going beyond the act of production and mixing and mastering and actually fixing things.

  4. D says:

    Don’t a lot of producers do that anyway – cut out the trash? And have input about which songs to kill? Although this may only apply to bigtime major label producers working with small-fry bands. I always liked how on this one Boss Hogg album Jon Spencer gets credited with ‘producer’ amd his wife is the ‘reducer’. Cool-ass title.

  5. DiscussAlarms says:

    The only thing I remember about Boss Hog is that on one song Jon Spencer says “Eat raw macaroni” and it’s the coolest sounding thing ever.
    I guess a lot of producers do that but I was thinking more editorial in the sense of fixing notes and words and things that are clearly “wrong” or eliminating certain sections of songs rather than whole songs.
    I think there should be a whole lot more reducing than producing.

  6. D says:

    I’ve always wanted someone to go through Led Zeppelin’s back catalogue and eliminate a) any guitar solos and b) Robert Plant. In the era of Lucas-esque revisionism, shouldn’t that be allowed? I mean all you have to do is listen to “Lyrical Gangbang” off The Chronic to get a sense of the awesome Jones/Bonham power waiting to be unleashed once the repressive layers of “baby baby” jibber jabber and incessant guitar noodling are thrown away. Yet another reason to do away with copyright, I suppose.

    You, sir, should remix a Destroyer track. Do what all the hep kids are doing and throw some Jay-Z in there.

  7. ErrantAlbatross says:

    More righteous words were never blogged about Zeppelin. Reduced to riffs and a rhythm section, it is Sacred Rock Music.

    *Good* producers usually offer a lot of input in a studio, suggesting instruments to use, parts to play, vocal approaches, whatevuh. That said, the Destroyer record in question has three people playing on it–Bejar and two producers–which means what you’re hearing IS, ostensibly, the “reduced” product. So in this case, I think it would be more to the point, Alarms, if you said, “It would be cool if bands let ME tell them when they’re sucking.” Having felt that way myself, I would probably agree with that statement–along with most other words I might choose to put in your mouth, incidentally.

    PS: The vocal diarrhea on Yr Blues ends after the first 30 seconds of track one, doesn’t it? And the second track is a totally concise pop song. I mean, like, c’mon! Mercy!

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