Food for thought‘[...] do not think that good design can make a poor product good, whether the product be a machine, a building, a promotional brochure or a business man. But [...] good design can materially help make a good product reach its full potential. In short, [...] good design is good business.’
Thomas J. Watson Jr., IBM CEO

Yoshida Kyōdai—shamisen reborn

August 10, 2008, 11:57 PM

Watch in awe as these two “kyōdai” (brothers in japanese), kimono&hakama-clad but hair-died, masterfully fuse the traditional shamisen with modern music. The Yoshida Brothers are celebrities in Japan and they’ve also begun to be promoted in US and the rest of the world as well. So much that some even compare their shamisen-skills to Jimi Hendrix’s.

Enjoy a simple tranquille ballad and a ravishing waterfall-like song:

(thanks go to otaku)

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Massive Attack To The Heart

August 3, 2008, 3:45 PM

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(view larger on flickr)

Superb concert last night in Bucharest. It thrilled me to see that not only did they know in which country they were (this may sound odd, but many artist coming here for the first time mistook us for Budapest—a big mistake, considering the ancient national issues between romaniand and hungarians), but most of their impressive type&image screen kept rolling strong headlines in romanian, among some being facts about our political problems. It really showed how serious Del Naja is about his campaigns and how much it means to him to fight for an idea through his music and shows.

And the music… well, it was enchanting, hypnotising, hair raising. Can’t wait to get the new album :)

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Music tag

July 4, 2008, 12:05 PM

Got a tag from Pentru ochi—there’s a first :D. And it’s a nice one, to name seven songs that keep humming in my head these days. Here goes:

Oi Va Voi – Refugee
DeVothchka – How It Ends
Adriano Celentano – I Want To Know (part two)
Daft Punk – Aerodynamic
Archive – Fool
Faithless – To All New Arrivals
Placebo – Song To Say Goodbye

Enjoy.

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Smoke on the Shinano*

June 11, 2008, 11:49 PM

I won’t give any hints, the title is enough—just sit back and enjoy :D

*You can find the video on several websites under the name “Smoke on the Yangtze”—however, the musicians are obviously japanese, not chinese, so I think Shinano would be more suitable (or Biwa, as somebody suggested).

(Thanks go to Maria “Anael” for the link)

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Oi Va Voi

June 1, 2008, 1:33 PM

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Some time ago I was enchanted by N.O.H.A. This time I’m glad I’ve found Oi Va Voi (wiki). Combining jewish-music influences and hungarian folk with electronic music, the outcome is a seductive, eclectic and blood-boiling pleasure for the ears. Ranging from beautiful melancholic songs like Yesterday’s Mistakes, burning energy like Refugee (see it below), dance-till-you-drop D’Ror Yikra or even Massive-Attack-like tunes in Hora, Oi Va Voi members surely have grown to a distinct and well-developed personality. Their last album, bearing the same name as the band, was released in 2007 and has some great songs as well. The first single is the hilarious Yuri.

Here’s their beautiful Refugee song, from the 2003-released Laughter Through Tears album. Do admire their gorgeous singer, Alice McLaughlin ;)

You can also listen some of their songs on the excellent Deezer site or on the Oi Va Voi MySpace page.

(photo from here)

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Les Triplettes – homage to Django

May 14, 2008, 1:58 AM

Fun to see the great jazz guitarist Django Reinhardt‘s caricature in Les Triplettes de Belleville (one of the best animation films ever made – not kidding). If you’re wondering about his left hand fingers, Django lost two of them in a fire at the age of 18, yet he managed to relearn and master the quitar, becoming a jazz guitar legend, in spite of his handicap.

If you ever find yourself working late at night and want to be energized, hoping to work for hours without feeling the time flying by, do listen to Django. Highly recommended for sunny afternoons as well ;)

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(via)

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Nice tribute to Muller-Brockmann

May 7, 2008, 4:30 PM

Liam Walsh took the time to reproduce Brockmann’s Zurich Tonhalle Poster in scripting and tune it to Beethoven’s ouverture op.61 (go to Liam’s website to enjoy the piece).

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(via September Industry)

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N.O.H.A. – sensual energy

March 5, 2008, 4:09 AM

Should you take a provocative spanish voice, sometimes reminding of Pink Martini‘s China, a ravish voice like Faithless‘ Maxi’s or Keith‘s and some great instrumentists with classical background, pour on some drum’n’bass, Bregovic sound and latin music, you might get a feeble ideea about N.O.H.A. (Noise of Human Art).

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Unfortunately they aren’t so easy to find on youtube and such (this is their best known song, not an official video though), but you can check out their MySpace for more details, music and for some great downloads as well (definitely try Pijama, Gipsy Valley or Dive in your life – Balkan Hot Step for instance was the track played in this Nike Shox ad).

I’d love to see them live, they seem to put on quite a show. And I know I’d dance my brains out :)) Maybe sometime soon…

(thanks Iulian for the demo)

Later edit:
Here’s N.O.H.A.’s MySpace videos. Take a look at them live:

BALKAN HOT STEP LIVE

Add to My Profile | More Videos

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Camouflage – coming live in Bucharest, 19 jan

December 17, 2007, 12:06 AM

I read about Camouflage on Metropotam (link in romanian). The thing that cought my attention was that they were compared to Depeche Mode (a logic linking, since Camouflage are the name in german synth-pop). First I thought “just some other copy-cats”. But luckily I searched them out, found out they’re quite old (singing since ’84) and they had some well known singles (Love Is A Shield and The Great Commandment). So, they’ll be singing live in 19 january in Kristal Glam Club, Bucharest, if you can go, I think it’ll be worth it :)

Listen to one of the singles from their 2003 album, Sensor (their best, imo), called “Me And You”:

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Morcheeba – Riverbed

December 4, 2007, 2:56 AM

Beautiful song, very soothing and relaxing… Almost dreamy. From Morcheeba‘s last album, Dive Deep.
An image may equal 1000 words, but a good song means more, for a feeling equals 10000 words.

Lyrics here, listen the song here. Voice by Thomas Dybdahl, listen to some of his great songs here, here and here.

Reminds me a bit of Kwoon. These scandinavians sure are sensitive :)

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