Sunday, June 26, 2011

The Caretaker - Persistent Repetition of Phrases (Install, 2008)

Remember the feeling you had when you were watching Stanley Kubrick's The Shining and Jack enters the Gold Room, the ballroom of the Overlook Hotel? There is a definitive emotion that occurs when the first notes of that 1920's jazz begins to play. Its ominous, creepy, spectral and unrelenting. That sequence in the bathroom with Delbert Grady, the previous caretaker, is quite possibly the most brilliantly frightening experience I had as a young person ingesting art of any kind.

Electronic musician James Kirby recreates these feelings with this project. Cutting and pasting jazz from the 1920's and 1930's, he reduces the tempo and adds effects, resulting in an alien transmission as beautiful as it is psychotic. These soundscapes are unmatched in their simplicity and elegance.

"No sir, YOU are the caretaker. You've always been the caretaker. I ought to know: I've always been here."

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