Eat The Darkness

by matthew ratajczak

Archive for the ‘Music’ Category

“These Are a Few of My Favorite Things” Sayonara ’08!!!

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I love reading through the different end of the year, best-of lists for music, movies, news stories etc… So I thought I would piss away some time and make some lists of my own as 2008 comes to an end.

Lets start with the tunes. Looking back, I don’t feel like I really listened to a lot of new music released in 2008. I used to pore over all the monthly music mags, trying to keep up with all the new bands and and all the hot new music being released. I don’t know what’s happened over the last couple years though. Too busy? Not interested? Too much work? Who the fuck knows. Anyway, here are some of my favorite releases from 2008.

10. Juno: Music From the Motion Picture. “All I Want Is You” by Barry Louis Polisar could possibly be our wedding song when Jessica and I get married.

09. Sea Wolf: Leaves In The River. This didn’t leave the CD player in my truck for weeks earlier this year.

08. Land of Talk: Some Are Lakes. Never heard of these guys until Alex and I saw them open for Broken Social Scene in Pompano Beach. They were killer. Still absorbing this one.

07. R.E.M.: Accelerate.  Never a huge R.E.M. fan, but this is good shit.

06. The Walkmen: You & Me. (Thanks John!)

05. Deerhunter: Microcastle. Don’t have much to say here. I just really like it and listen to it a lot.

04. Elbow: The Seldom Seen Kid. Such a grossly underrated band. They just keep getting better and better. A beautiful recording.

03. Fleet Foxes: Fleet Foxes. I resisted this one for a long time because they seemed like the flavor of the month. I stand corrected. It’s fantastic.

02. TV On the Radio: Dear Science. Can’t stop listening to “Love Dog.”

01. Radiohead: In Rainbows. Technically released in late 2007 digitally, but I listened to it mostly in 2008, and am still enjoying it quite a bit. Saw the first show of their North American tour with John and Judyta earlier this year. A little rusty as they worked through some of the new material, but a fucking amazing show none the less. One of my favorite bands of all time.

Just like my new music experience in 2008, I didn’t see a lot of new movies. I saw a lot of older ones at home, but didn’t see a lot on the big screen. However, there were a few I did see and enjoyed very much. In no particular order, these are the movies that were most memorable (that I can remember seeing) to me in 2008.

• Slumdog Millionaire

• The Dark Knight

• Tropic Thunder

• Iron Man

Like I said, not much. Maybe I’m forgetting something I saw and it will come back to me. However, I am looking forward to seeing these 2008 releases as soon as possible:

Gran Torino, The Wrestler, Rachel Getting Married, Doubt, W, Quantum of Solace, Defiance, Zack and Miri Make a Porno, Religuious, The Reader, Let the Right One In, Role Models, Vicky Cristina Barcelona, The Visitor and Milk.

Shit, I guess I didn’t really get out too much this year. I have a lot of catching up to do. Almost forgot, Step Brothers cracked me up!!! I was in tears when I saw it for the first time. Haven’t laughed that hard in a while.

I would normally list my favorite photo books of the year, but I didn’t buy too many this year. I’m seeing a pattern here. Must be the poor economy and my lack of money to have fun with. Anyway, I did buy a couple traditional photo books that I really like:

Findings: by Hiroshi Watanabe

Stuff I Gotta Remember Not to Forget: by Darin Mickey

And some independent, self-published work too.

One: by Romain Blanquart

38: by Kevin Miyazaki

Superficial Snapshots Zine 2: An Issue With Lomos: by Allison V. Smith

Rank Strangers: by Susana Raab

I also purchased this print by Andrew Hetherington and this print by Beth Dowat 20×200.

More important than the music, photography and the movies is the fact that some very cool things happened in my life this year. I started this blog. Sold some prints (the print sale is still up and running here with a possible second sale with different images in the future). I finally got www.matthewratajczak.com up and running, getting one step closer to going out on my own.

Overall it’s been a great year. I hope next year is even better and that it brings happiness, love, adventure and success to all of you. Happy New Year!!!

Written by eatthedarkness

December 31, 2008 at 3:30 PM

Videotape

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Love Radiohead as much as I do? Like killer animation? If you answered yes to at least one of these questions, go check out the In Rainbows Animated Music Video Contest over at aniboom. Make sure to check out the other submissions that didn’t make the final cut as well.

I really love what Wolfgang Jaiser did with “Videotape.”

Written by eatthedarkness

September 16, 2008 at 1:34 AM

Posted in Music

Kool Thing(s)

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1. tinytinygroupshow by photographer and blogger Kevin Miyazaki. A great idea to bring various photographers together from all over the globe to collaborate on a single theme. Here is Kevin’s description of the ongoing project:

“tinytinygroupshow is a mini electroexhibit of photographs based around a basic theme. There are no gallery hours, price lists, commissions, lengthy wall texts or attractive gallery attendants. tinytinygroupshow is a place to have a brief look at some photography, by photographers known and unknown, in a manner that hopefully provokes a little thought.”

2. A new video project by Chase Jarvis was recently posted on his blog. It’s called “Songs for Eating and Drinking.” I think this is a cool idea that I hope continues to develop and becomes an ongoing feature. I haven’t looked through everything, but I hope there are some candid conversations between the different artists. That would be incredible and elevate the project to a new level for me. Check it out here at the official site as well. Wish I could be there for one for the dinners. Here is Chase’s description of the project:

“Okay, here’s the concept: Get a bunch of insanely talented musicians together, and let them share songs, food, and drink. Many a musical career starts with small audiences, impromptu performances, late night mutterings; and then the lucky end up on large stages and tucked deep inside recording studios – often vastly disconnected from those that love their music. My friends in the music industry have bellyached that industry folk hardly ever share food in a meaningful way – or rarely just get together and effin chill. So my good friend Michael, who has been putting amazing people at big dinner tables for a several years now, reached out to me after he’d concepted this thing… We connected and decided to take this to the next level, creating these evenings for our musician friends built around long tables, remarkable locations, sturdy drinking food, and bottles of wine and whiskey – with the hope that throughout each night songs would rise up from the table…and with the hope that we could share that music with the world.

This project is a collaboration between my buddy, table guru and all around genius, Michael Hebb, and yours truly. Hatched from Michael’s underground one-pot dinners, and documented in my personal still photo and video style, Songs For Eating and Drinking is the bringing together of the world’s most talented musicians and letting them share songs, food, and drink. Many a musical career starts with small audiences, impromptu performances, and late night mutterings. These cozy and soulful evenings are a return to those days.” 

3. I love TV on the Radio! This is an older song off of Desperate Youth, Blood Thirsty Babes, but I think the video is new. Reminds me of the Radiohead video for House of Cards. Same technology? Can’t wait to hear TV’s new material.

Written by eatthedarkness

August 26, 2008 at 5:10 PM

Kool Thing(s)

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The first installment of postings about things I’ve been looking at, reading, listening to or otherwise wasting my time on that I think are worth a damn.

1. The Selby by Todd Selby.

2. Martin Parr interview at PDNonline.

3. William Lobdell’s “42 Things I Know.” If You work at a newspaper, are thinking about leaving, don’t want to leave or have already left, this is a must read. I wish the people in power would pay attention to these and other observations and take action to save one of the most important institutions in the free world! It kills me to see what’s happening to the industry. Here’s another good conversation to check out from NPR’s Democracy Now program (thanks for the link Romain). 

4. NPR on YouTube.

5. “The Girl in the Window” by Melissa Lyttle and Lane DeGregory. 

6. Vincent Laforet started a new blog. Some nice nuggets of technical wisdom mixed in with everything else about his photographic life. He’s one of three photographers hired by Newsweek to blog about and photograph the Olympic games in Beijing. Check out these photos showing what he brought to the games and how he packed it.

Written by eatthedarkness

August 8, 2008 at 1:16 PM

Don’t Forget About This House of Cards

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Rachel Hulin over at Photoshelter’s Shoot! The Blog posted this great piece about Radiohead’s “House of Cards” video. They’re one of my all-time favorite bands and one of the few bands I can think of that would be open to creating a music video like this. Incredible technology and an incredible band. Check out Rachel’s post to see the video and learn more about the techniques used or just watch the video below. Enjoy!

Written by eatthedarkness

July 15, 2008 at 12:28 AM

Posted in Music

Blue Monday

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Go find a jukebox and see what a quarter will do

I don’t wanna talk I just wanna go back to blue

Feed’s me when I’m hungry and quenches my thirst

Loves me when I’m lonely and thinks of me first

Blue is the color of night

When the red sun

Disappears from the sky

Raven feathers shiny and black

A touch of blue glistening down her back

We don’t talk about heaven and we don’t talk about hell

We come to depend on one another so damn well

So go to confession whatever gets you through

You can count your blessings I’ll just count on blue

Blue is the color of night

When the red sun

Disappears from the sky

Raven feathers shiny and black

A touch of blue glistening down her back

Blue

“Blue” by Lucinda Williams

It’s been a while since I’ve posted anything. Just haven’t been inspired to write. Nothing to say, nothing to show. I haven’t been making a lot of photographs for myself lately. Since taking on the assignment desk duties at work, most of my time is spent in front of the computer, eyes too tired at the end of the day to look through a camera. Only a few more weeks though, with a short vacation to Michigan in between to break the monotony.

You’d think I’d spend my weekends photographing, printing, researching, working on getting my freelance career going so I can leave this damn newspaper, doing SOMETHING PHOTO since I’m not doing a lot for myself during the week. Sometimes this happens. But sometimes there are other priorities.

I fear I’m slipping into a rut. Need to get out. Maybe it’s just another blue Monday.

Copyright (c) 2008 Matthew Ratajczak All Rights Reserved

Written by eatthedarkness

June 9, 2008 at 2:06 PM

Gouge Away

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Who doesn’t love the Pixies? I don’t know anybody who doesn’t. OK, maybe a few people. What about Radiohead? If you’re fans of these two incredible bands, two of my all-time favorites, check out Pitchfork’s new sister site Pitchfork.tv to see a live Radiohead performance of “Bangers & Mash” in Nigel Godrich’s basement, and for one week, watch “loudQUIETloud: A Film About the Pixies.” The site just launched Monday. So if you have tons of time, or maybe just a few minutes, to waste in front of the computer, check it.

Written by eatthedarkness

April 8, 2008 at 12:43 AM

Posted in Music