Sunday, 10 May 2009

cross over blog post

Alun do you remember when we went to see that Free Jazz the other night?

It was quite good, wasn't it?

Except how good can Free Jazz really be? How good can anything really be?

I don't know. I barely know what I'm talking about.

I believe it was Evan Parker we went to see last night. He was playing saxophone. There was also a pianist and a drummer. The drummer looked alot like Skinner from the X-Files.

They were all great musicians and I kept wondering how they'd play a more conventional type of music. If they were playing some regular, 4/4 jazz standard. How would they embellish their parts and etc, etc.

But maybe that wouldn't be a good enough exhibition of their skill. Maybe constant soloing, their free jazz, is the only adequate way for them to express their ideas.

But maybe that's just a way to develop good ideas. And now they have all these neat ideas (the pianist put a sheet of paper between the piano strings, the drummer played a cymbal with his hands on his lap) how can they fit them into a song?

Perhaps there's no appropriate way; free jazz is the only vehicle for their expression. It is the best way to fully explore everything they have. It is self serving.

This makes me think, sort of, about an upcoming game: Beyond Good and Evil 2. Recently "gameplay footage" or something was leaked. Here it is (watch in HD):

(no one knows if this is actual gameplay footage or a trailer or something fake, incidentally.)

The similarity is this: the setting looks really interesting, with alot of detail, a fairly dense population and a lived in feel. But free running in games, so far, has annoyed me greatly. It's like a distraction from what is generally not a very good game. It's alot of surface.

But maybe, with a world this detailed, that kind of free running is the only adequate way to see it all, to take it all in and feel a part of that world.

You see?

It's just it felt sort of ridiculous when the band stopped playing for a minute, we all applauded, then they started again playing basically the same stuff. Since it's all improvised we're just supposed to revel in their playing? I guess that's fine. They all seemed very amiable.

I guess I can sum up by saying that if I'd been standing I wouldn't have enjoyed it as much. As it was I was sitting and I could let it wash over me if I chose. But then there were bits that were interesting which I might not have enjoyed if I didn't also play the drums. As something emotional it left me cold, but as something technical it was great (although I believe their playing was rooted in emotion, I'm not trying to criticise here or anything).

There were alot of ideas I intend to steal to one day perhaps create something other than free jazz.

Or whatever.

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