Wednesday, May 6, 2009

The Lost World/Dengue Fever @ The Castro Theatre - 5/5/09

For this year's San Francisco International Film Festival, the annual silent film accompanied by live music pairs The Lost World with LA's Dengue Fever. This tradition is reminiscent of the Barbican Centre London's excellent silent film and live music series that has featured Lambchop, The Delgados and others in the past.

Harry Hoyt directed The Lost World, aided by the pioneering stop motion animation work by Willis O'Brien, only better known for his work on King Kong. This is Hoyt's journey back to a jurassic wonderland, aiming to satisfy man's fixation with the ancient prehistoric creatures that roamed our planet. This particular print has had vivid color tinting to bring the monochromatic masterpiece into a modernized otherworldly space.

This otherworldy visual accompaniment suits the evolved 2009 version of Dengue Fever. Dengue Fever have always been an entertaining party band that brings the 60's psych, garage and surf vibes. This ambitious pairing has inspired them to instrumental and vocal heights that shows a band with tremendous scope and understanding of textural nuance. Instead of visually fixating on the beauty of Cambodian queen, Chhom Nimol we are watching sequences of humorous human trivialities juxtaposed with dinosaurs roaming the earth and culminating with an amazing climax of a Brontosaurus invading London! 

The band is squarely in the ethnofuturepast sound world with colors that remind one of Jon Hassell's treated flute and trumpet melodies from "Dream Theory in Malaya", only to crash back down to a late 60's Cambodian space lounge with garagey Farfisa and snaky guitar lines. Dengue Fever could be aiming for the next chapter of ethnoforgery, or ethnofuturism, pioneered by one of our favorite labels, Sublime Frequencies. We'll definitely keep an eye on this band and see if this challenging live score will influence their future works. Props to SFIFF for this inspired program that won't leave the memory for some time.

Simon Bananaspam

Click For mp3

No comments: