Saturday, September 24, 2016

Lookin' Sharp on Lookin' SHARK - 1: Third Time's The Charm

So I'm basically at a point where I've written pretty much all the important scenes. Just adding some more goofs, inside jokes, and the connective tissue that will hold this all together.

Oh, right, my weird process: I'm basically ripping off Thom Yorke's method for writing the lyrics to Kid A. He was having difficulty approaching it head on, so he cut up scraps of lyrics, put them in a hat, and drew them at semi-random. Given that Lookin' SHARK was born from the ashes of probably about six different dumpster fires abandoned projects (many of which had completed scripts ready to shoot), I was getting pretty tired of coming up with the film's setup when I just wanted to get into the meat. So, borrowing a page from Mr. Yorke, I've written a smattering of scenes, printed them all out separately, and then I'll randomly scatter them across my office floor and use that as the jumping-off point for the order.

At this exact cosmic moment, I have 62 separate scenes of wildly-varying length. Some are several pages, while some are scrawled on scraps of paper; there are probably over a hundred tiny mini-scenes that I'll wedge into the shooting order. And while I'm massively getting ahead of myself, I can also fuck with everything in the edit. (Here's hoping that LS isn't my first film that takes a billion years to edit based on some misguided idea to shoot shoot shoot; I put together the picture locks for Transmissions and Arc in about a month each.)

And here's something that I've been developing the last few days: I'm hoping to shoot the film in late November through December, and since it probably won't take more than a dozen or so shooting days, I'm going to shoot the film three times in its entirety; the second session is penciled in for late January and early February, and I want to shoot the last session in early spring. It definitely plays into the plot (and possibly foreshadows a shitty editing experience that I'm entirely at fault for if I'm not careful), and the real benefit is that I can see what works and what doesn't when sifting through all the footage for Trial 1. I'll probably even have a decent assembly going, and while, in theory, I could certainly put together the full thing with one run-through, I'm sure that I'll see scenes that I could do better or rejigger. Probably will also write in a bunch of what I'm calling "CT scenes," short for "connective tissue scenes." So if I need some more exposition or more goofs in a certain spot, I can do it on Trial 2 or Trial 3. There are some character differences in 2 or 3, but I'll leave that mystery for the final cut. It's a bit more involved than simply getting a haircut and swapping outfits.

Oh right, forgot to mention (or did I?) that I'm pulling a Transmissions and doing every single thing for this film myself. So that's all crew duties, plus one human role and at least three separate voices for AIs. (This sounds super controlling of me, but while Transmission had some other humans do voices, I want LS to be 100% me. For Transmissions I did every single shot, though, and for LS I'll probably need someone to simply guard the camera for the superwide shots where the camera is over 100 feet away from me as I, for example, run through the park in a gorilla suit.) For the two Brother/Steve And Derek Show fans still reading, I'm reprising the characters of Steve and Derek, so expect at least one inside joke about that. And while Transmissions was, honestly, extremely difficult and exhausting to helm solo (my best guess of the number of times I wanted to quit is close to the number of electrons in the known universe), I obviously learned what is and isn't more difficult with a one-man film crew compared to a traditional setup. It will be far more difficult logistically, but I don't need as much tight control as I did for Transmissions, so everything will be a little looser and mentally easier.

I'm also going to - and I know this sounds crazy - try to have some fun when I make this. Transmissions was pretty much a toil all the way through for a variety of reasons, and I only had a laugh when happy accidents improved a take. Arc was fun in spots (definitely not during the winter exteriors), but I was ultimately overwhelmed with keeping the entire thing running while juggling far too many roles, like being my own assistant director.

So back to writing some CT scenes, scribbling some random goofs, and actually writing up a budget. It's basically the cost for a new tripod, an editing hard drive, and a new tie. I'm probably not even going to bother with festivals for this, since it's basically an exercise to get back into filmmaking to prep for an ensemble cast that does not feature me for a more-ambitious Film 4. It's about as ridiculous as the manic Schizopolis, which bombed at Cannes, and I need to get this goofiness out of my system before returning to hopefully-less-confusing superserious stuff. I also won't have to waste all that money for festival programmers to yawn through this film before rejecting it. So yeah, this will probably live and die on YouTube, lest it turns out superawesome and Netflix comes with an offer.

Friday, September 23, 2016

Mux204: October 2016

Download or stream.

Redid this one a billion times like 203, so another frankenmux; also, this randomly has a lot of female vocalists. Had so much trouble that 205 is already fully sequenced, though that's a bit of a special case.

1. Car Seat Headrest - Fill In The Blank (Teens of Denial)
2. The Kills - Getting Down (Midnight Boom)
3. Bloc Party - Positive Tension (Silent Alarm)
4. Dirty Projectors - About To Die (Swing Lo Magellan)
5. Shearwater - Black Eyes (Golden Archipelago)
6. Purity Ring - Stranger Than Earth (Another Eternity)
7. Taylor Swift - How You Get The Girl (1989)
8. Phantogram - All Dried Up (Eyelid Movies)
9. Preoccupations - Degraded (Preoccupations)
10. Yeah Yeah Yeahs - Warrior (Show Your Bones)
11. Liars - Annual Moon Words (WIXIW)
12. The Faces - Ooh La La (Ooh La La)

TRT 43:45

Rookies: The Faces, Preoccupations

2016 music: Car Seat Headrest, Preoccupations

Tuesday, September 6, 2016

Mux203: Mr. Mux, A Rock, And A Hard Place

Before I even say anything, I have to admit a fault in my otherwise-faultless professionalism: It seems that there's a problem with every single file of "What I Like About You" on P2P. Let's just pretend the massive, listening-wrecking blip at 7:03 isn't there and that the track itself doesn't sound so crispy.

Otherwise: Download or stream.

1. LCD Soundsystem - Daft Punk Is Playing At My House (LCD Soundsystem)
2. The Romantics - What I Like About You (The Romantics)
3. The Jon Spencer Blues Explosion - Give Me A Chance (Acme)
4. Sheer Mag - Nobody's Baby (Sheer Mag III)
5. Ty Segall - Caesar (Melted)
6. TV on the Radio - I Was A Lover (Return To Cookie Mountain)
7. Outkast - Hey Ya! (The Love Below)
8. Radiohead - Glass Eyes (A Moon Shaped Pool)
9. DJ Shadow - High Noon (Preemptive Strike)
10. M83 - Kim & Jessie (Saturdays = Youth)
11. Prince - Uptown (Dirty Mind)
12. Hot Chip - Motion Sickness (In Our Heads)

TRT 49:09

Rookies: Outkast, The Romantics, Sheer Mag

2016 music: Radiohead, Sheer Mag

Friday, August 19, 2016

Mux202: September 2016

Download or stream.

1. Beach Slang - Punks In A Disco Bar (A Loud Bash of Teenage Feelings)
2. Muncie Girls - I Don't Want To Talk About It (From Caplan To Belize)
3. Silversun Pickups - Well Thought Out Twinkles (Carnavas)
4. Car Seat Headrest - 1937 State Park (Teens of Denial)
5. Tegan and Sara - Boyfriend (Love You To Death)
6. Junior Boys - Teach Me How To Fight (Last Exit)
7. The Avalanches - Subways (Wildflower)
8. Pinegrove - Then Again (Cardinal)
9. The Kills - Days of Why And How (Ash & Ice)
10. Nothing - Curse of the Sun (Tired of Tomorrow)
11. Dinosaur Jr. - Be A Part (Give A Glimpse of What Yer Not)
12. Caribou - Sun (Swim)

TRT 47:39

Rookies: Muncie Girls, Nothing, Pinegrove, Silversun Pickups

2016 music: The Avalanches, Beach Slang, Car Seat Headrest, Dinosaur Jr., The Kills, Muncie Girls, Nothing, Pinegrove, Tegan and Sara

Saturday, August 6, 2016

Mux201: Mr. Mux Plays The Hits

Download or stream.

Not going to post the tracklist because 1) pretty sure most of you will know all the songs, and 2) I like to throw in a little mystery every now and then.

The title of the Mux is fairly self-explanatory. It actually started right when Random Access Memories came out and I didn't want to put "Get Lucky" on anything because it was ridiculously overplayed. So I literally made an advance playlist called Mux201 and put "Get Lucky" on it, knowing it'd be a few years before I got around to it (and already knowing that Mux200 would be another Retromux). So yeah, thrilling origin story.

1. The Modern Lovers - Roadrunner (The Modern Lovers)
2. The Cars - Just What I Needed (The Cars)
3. Weezer - Buddy Holly (The Blue Album)
4. Prince - Little Red Corvette (1999)
5. Radiohead - Idioteque (Kid A)
6. Justice - D.A.N.C.E. ([Cross])
7. Daft Punk - Get Lucky (Random Access Memories)
8. LCD Soundsystem - All My Friends (Sound of Silver)
9. Ice Cube - It Was A Good Day (The Predator)
10. The Streets - Weak Become Heroes (Original Pirate Material)
11. R. Kelly - I Believe I Can Fly (R)
12. David Bowie - "Heroes" ("Heroes")

TRT 58:51

Rookies: The Cars, Ice Cube, The Modern Lovers, R. Kelly

Friday, July 22, 2016

Mux200: Retromux Deux (plus Mux001 and Mux100)

So it only took eight years, but Mux200 has arrived! And, just like Mux100, this Mux is comprised (almost) entirely from bands that featured on the very first Mux back in 2008. Well, the first Mux only had 11 tracks, so I tossed on a Radiohead cut to bring it up to 12; no major foul given that Radiohead featured on Mux002.

I probably won't do a third Retromux for 300 (set for, at this rate, sometime in late 2020) given that a lot of these bands have either called it quits or have faded considerably. For example, The Joggers probably won't release another album, and I've used up all their muxable tracks. And Dan Deacon hasn't really done anything too spectacular as of late, same with The Smashing Pumpkins and... well, you get the idea. Maybe I'll revise that idea in 2020 and make it a combination of 001 and 002.

Last thing: Same as the jump from 099 to 100, there's new art for 200 and going forward. 001-099 was a picture I accidentally Photoshopped that way when I was 12 or so, and 100-199 was a rather triumphant photo of me leaping over fireworks after a particularly-difficult day of shooting Archetype. Given my total lack of talent at graphic design (and I haven't really directly talked to JET lately, who did some awesome art for the two Tapes By JET), I just took a rather horrifying picture of me. If anyone thinks it far too terrible for these fines Muxes, make me something better!

So download or stream Mux200, and check out Muxes of yore below it.

1. Ted Leo and the Pharmacists - Where Have All The Rude Boys Gone? (Hearts of Oak)
2. Destroyer - European Oils (Destroyer's Rubies)
3. The National - Looking For Astronauts (Alligator)
4. The Joggers - Little Kings (Solid Guild)
5. Dan Deacon - Trippy Green Skulls (Spiderman of the Rings)
6. Radiohead - Daydreaming (A Moon Shaped Pool)
7. Cut Copy - That Was Just A Dream (Bright Like Neon Love)
8. Wolf Parade - Dear Sons And Daughters of Hungry Ghosts (Apologies To The Queen Mary)
9. Pavement - AT&T (Wowee Zowee)
10. Spoon - My Little Japanese Cigarette Case (Ga Ga Ga Ga Ga)
11. My Bloody Valentine - What You Want (Loveless)
12. The Smashing Pumpkins - Cherub Rock (Siamese Dream)

I readded Mux100: Retromux to my Dropbox, so you can also download or stream that. Tracks below.

1. Pavement - Summer Babe (Winter Version) (Slanted & Enchanted)
2. Ted Leo and the Pharmacists - Tell Balgeary, Balgury Is Dead (Hearts of Oak)
3. My Bloody Valentine - Loomer (Loveless)
4. Wolf Parade - Fancy Claps (Apologies To The Queen Mary)
5. The Joggers - Era Prison (With A Cape And A Cane)
6. Dan Deacon - Snake Mistakes (Spiderman of the Rings)
7. Cut Copy - Autobahn Music Box (Bright Like Neon Love)
8. Spoon - Back To The Life (Kill The Moonlight)
9. Destroyer - Chinatown (Kaputt)
10. The National - Geese of Beverely Road (Alligator)
11. The Smashing Pumpkins - 1979 (Acoustic) (Single)

And Mux001: May 2008 is also in there to download or stream. Tracks below.

1. Wolf Parade - Language City (At Mount Zoomer)
2. Cut Copy - Saturdays (Bright Like Neon Love)
3. Ted Leo - La Costa Brava (Living With The Living)
4. My Bloody Valentine - Off Your Face (Glider)
5. The Smashing Pumpkins - 1979 (Mellon Collie and the Infinite Sadness)
6. The National - Slow Show (Boxer)
7. Destroyer - My Favorite Year (Trouble In Dreams)
8. The Joggers - Back to the Future (Solid Guild)
9. Pavement - Cut Your Hair (Crooked Rain, Crooked Rain)
10. Spoon - Finer Feelings (Ga Ga Ga Ga Ga)
11. Dan Deacon - Pink Batman (Spiderman of the Rings)

Until 2020...

Friday, July 8, 2016

Mux199: Cottonwood Apocalypse

Download or stream.

A bit past the actual cottonwood season, but my allergies were so horrific this year that I'm going to keep taking loratadine well into November as a precaution.

1. DIIV - Yr Not Far (Is The Is Are)
2. Wye Oak - If You Should See (Tween)
3. Shearwater - Rooks (Rook)
4. The Kills - Black Tar (Ash & Ice)
5. Radiohead - Ful Stop (A Moon Shaped Pool)
6. Holy Fuck - Royal Gregory (LP)
7. Japanese Breakfast - Heaven (Psychopomp)
8. EL VY - Return To The Moon (Return To The Moon)
9. The Knaves - Fashion Police ([Random Song On My Hard Drive])
10. Parquet Courts - Berlin Got Blurry (Human Performance)
11. Car Seat Headrest - Drunk Drivers / Killer Whales (Teens of Denial)
12. Beach Slang - Bad Art & Weirdo Ideas (The Things We Do To Find People Who Feel Like Us)

TRT 48:04

Rookies: The Knaves

2016 music: Car Seat Headrest, DIIV, Japanese Breakfast, The Kills, Parquet Courts, Radiohead, Wye Oak

Happy Day 300 of Triumvirate!

Today is the 300th consecutive day (starting September 6, 2015) of writing 1,000 words daily (minimum) of Triumvirate, the ninth book in the nine-book series The Chronicle. I've been gathering ideas for this beast since - no bullshit - 1995, at the ripe age of 10; started formulating a video game design doc (when it was a game) in 1998; took a crack at writing it as a screenplay in 1999; finally finished a novel draft in 2002 (of Wastelands Black, the second book, since Ages, the first, had been attempted and aborted too many times); worked piecemeal through college from 2002-2006; then started the current rounds of drafts in 2006 and have been basically writing nonstop since then. A few non-Chronicle projects cropped up between Chronicle books - such as Meridien K; the unpublished Antipsychotic and Old War; and the unfinished One Mere Man and One Future - but those never distracted for too long.

I still have the final proper chapter and then the epilogue to write, which will probably take about two weeks. Still, 300 is a nice big number, and except for Reformation, which took 15 months to write (and clocks in at 550K words [the printout of which weighs 13 lbs., single-spaced in 10-pt. font], e.g. a hair longer than Infinite Jest), this is the second-longest book in the series by about 150,000 words; it should top out at 450K words, whereas the third-longest book, Octoberan, is a little over 300K.

And since these will never see the light of day for quite some time, given that the drafts, combined, are well over 2 million words, I love posting pointless, obscure shit that really serves no purpose other than to make myself feel good for my insane writing routine; that, and I like stumbling upon these years later and laugh at the ridiculousness of the project at any given past state. So here, for whatever reason, are the (current/temporary) chapter titles that give pretty much zero indication what the book is about.

Book 1: Renewal

1. The Coronation
2. The Kingdom
3. The Kraid
4. The Nameless
5. The General
6. The Forgotten
7. The Chosen
8. The Seed
9. The Eve
10. The Victory

Book 2: Exile

11. The Rift
12. The Return
13. The Temple
14. The Choice
15. The Interloper
16. The Memory
17. The Cleansing
18. The Path
19. The Disappearance
20. The Schism

Book 3: Attrition

21. The Endless
22. The Phantoms
23. The Line
24. The Void
25. The Lost
26. The Escape
27. The Renaissance
28. The Siege
29. The Duel
30. The Miracle

Epilogue: Valhall

Thursday, June 23, 2016

Mux198: July 2016

Download or stream.

1. Phantogram - You Don't Get Me High Anymore (Three)
2. Porches - Be Apart (Pool)
3. Santigold - Walking In A Circle (99 Cents)
4. Aesop Rock - Rings (The Impossible Kid)
5. Purity Ring - Repetition (Another Eternity)
6. The Avalanches - Colours (Wildflower)
7. Prince - Kiss (Under The Cherry Moon)
8. Jay Reatard - Don't Let Him Come Back (Singles 06-07)
9. Ty Segall - The Hill (Twins)
10. The Strokes - Oblivius (Future Present Past)
11. Weezer - (Girl We Got A) Good Thing (The White Album)
12. Guided By Voices - I Am A Tree (Mag Earwhig!)

TRT 43:19

2016 music: Aesop Rock, The Avalanches, Phantogram, Porches, Santigold, The Strokes, Weezer

Tuesday, June 7, 2016

Mux197: Mr. Mux Reboots!

Download or stream.

1. The Kills - Siberian Nights (Ash & Ice)
2. Unknown Mortal Orchestra - First World Problem (Single)
3. Wolf Parade - Automatic (EP 4)
4. Shearwater - Filaments (Jet Plane And Oxbow)
5. Protomartyr - Pontiac 87 (The Agent Intellect)
6. Cheatahs - Seven Sisters (Mythologies)
7. Holy Fuck - Neon Dad (Congrats)
8. Tegan and Sara - Stop Desire (Love You To Death)
9. Japanese Breakfast - Rugged Country (Psychopomp)
10. Hop Along - The Knock (Painted Shut)
11. Parquet Courts - One Man, No City (Human Performance)
12. Car Seat Headrest - Destroyed By Hippie Powers (Teens of Denial)

Rookies: Car Seat Headrest, Japanese Breakfast

2016 music: Car Seat Headrest, Holy Fuck, Japanese Breakfast, The Kills, Parquet Courts, Shearwater, Tegan and Sara, Unknown Mortal Orchestra, Wolf Parade