Leonard Cohen i Globen

Jag var på Cohen’s konsert i Globen igår. Det var mäktigt! Han verkade vara i fin form och vid gott humör. Hade föreställt mig att det bara skulle vara honom på scenen + kören, men det var en hel ensemble med musiker som faktiskt var riktigt kompetenta. Cohen lät nästan precis som han brukar. Visst hans röst har åldrats, men bara ändrat karaktär… jag upplevde inte det där med att låtarna blir sämre live, jämfört med finputsade studioproducerad musik; han hade suverän koll på sin repertoar, varje ton satt rätt. Där det fanns avvikelser var det avsiktligt.

Vet inte varför publiken applåderade när han tog några små danssteg… han är 74, inte 94.. 🙂

Är väldigt nöjd med att ha fått se & höra en av vår tids största poeter, trodde ju liksom att jag hade missat det tåget, då han inte turnerat på 15 år…

Recension i UNT: http://www2.unt.se/avd/1,1826,MC=5-AV_ID=814910,00.html

Recension i DN: http://www.dn.se/DNet/jsp/polopoly.jsp?d=2198&a=839376

Och två blog-recensioner:

http://kulturdelen.blogspot.com/2008/10/leonard-cohen-i-globen.html

http://martenssonsmeningar.blogspot.com/2008/10/leonard-cohen.html

Joe Hill – Heart-shaped box

I am a bit tired with S. King and D. Koontz… After a number of books you get to know the authors too well… I know their stories, their techniques, their vocabularies…

Heart-shaped box is the debut novel by Joe Hill, and so far, a few chapters in, it has made quite an impression on me. The characters feel more real then S. King’s cannon fodder, and the story gives you real goose-bumps. His wording is excellent, beautiful. A couple of sentences made me stop for a few seconds to think “wow, that’s brilliant!” which is rare. I almost hesitate to continue reading now as I don’t want to risk disappointment.

I’m not much for spoilers so I won’t bother going through the story, you can look it up here:
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Heart-Shaped_Box_(novel)

Highly recommended book!

Update: Wow, I just gooogled about the book and found out that Joe Hill is actually Stephen King’s son! 😀

http://www.usatoday.com/life/people/2007-03-17-king-son_N.htm

En recension av No More Shall We Part…

Jag läste en recension av Nick Cave’s bästa album “No More Shall We Part” som jag tyckte beskrev skivan helt perfekt. Här är länken till recensionen på originalsidan:  http://www.splendidezine.com/reviews/apr-9-01/nick.html

och här är den i sin helhet:

I’ve often wondered who really buys Nick Cave records. I don’t mean this as an affront to Cave’s fans — and obviously there are a lot of them, or Cave wouldn’t be on a major label. I simply can’t envision many situations in which anyone would say “Hey, let’s listen to some Nick Cave!” No More Shall We Part is a beautiful, elegant record, capably fulfilling the promise of The Boatman’s Call, but it exacts a harrowing toll from the listener. This is not a record to which you can listen lightly; if used as background music it will gradually darken your mood, like poison seeping slowly into a well.

This is Cave’s first album since turning forty, and he’s showing his age — in a good way. Bitterness and sarcasm have given way to world-weary acceptance and a sincere desire for understanding. The relationship between an artist and his broken heart is a complex ballet of give-and-take, and Cave shows his mastery of it here. This is a man who no longer needs to turn every doomed romance into a murder ballad, whose stories no longer dovetail predictably into Southern Gothic violence and whose indifference toward God and Christianity has been supplanted by a comfortable awareness of his own spirituality. Clearly more at ease with faith than he’s ever been before — and seemingly having realized that the concepts of God and Christ are valid and admirable, their perceived failings in fact attributable to fallible Christians — Cave seems satisfied to skewer human hypocrisy with jet-black irony, as in the chilling “God is in the House”. Naturally, the remission of Cave’s religious ambivalence gives an entirely different feel to his most gospel-tinged moments — without ironic barbs, their soul-searching rings true in a way it never did before. Losses are felt more acutely and deliverance is more sincerely sought. Like a film director abandoning special effects in favor of dialogue, Cave finds emotional resonance in tiny, unique details, painting rich and engrossing pictures in a thousand shades of sadness. He plays light against dark in surprising ways, noticing the brightest flowers at his lowest moments and indulging an apparent fascination with kittens as symbols of goodness.

Vocally, Cave has never been better. Blending the swank sophistication of Bryan Ferry with the realistic narrative skill of Randy Newman and the confessional peaks of Cohen and Walker, he captivates with every word; it’s easy to picture him poised languidly in front of a piano, ever-present cigarette drooping from his fingers. He croons silkily on “As I Sat Sadly By Her Side,” unleashes an impassioned plea for forgiveness on “Oh My Lord” and reaches the height of elegant moodiness on “The Sorrowful Wife”. For the final moments of “God is in the House”, he slows to a wrenching a capella whisper-sing; the song’s success depends upon playing its final, ironic twist utterly straight, and Cave pulls it off wonderfully, reinforcing the dual meaning of the title without ever acknowledging it. Whenever you think you’ve seen the bottom of his bag of vocal tricks, he pulls out something new.

The music, too, is stunning. Lushly orchestrated strings, pristine piano, subtle guitar work and sweetly gorgeous backing vocals (courtesy of the McGarrigle sisters, I believe) are the order of the day. Above and beyond the stellar music are moments of absolutely transcendent beauty. The teary-eyed “Love Letter” might well send chills down your spine for its entire four minutes, but Warren Ellis’ violin, Cave’s vocals and piano occasionally align to create moments of such unbridled, heart-stopping emotion that you’ll be hard-pressed to keep your eyes dry. This is not rock and roll. Your local record shop will file it in the Rock section, yes, but it’s something far more complex. Elements of rock creep in on “As I Sat Sadly By Her Side” and flare aggressively on “The Sorrowful Wife”, among others, but No More Shall We Part grandly and gleefully defies categorization, as it should.

A gloomy record? Yes. A beautiful record? Yes. A record to listen to when you’re alone, sitting in a dark, old house, sipping gin and mourning lost love? That’s your choice. After a day spent listening to No More Shall We Part, I’m suffused with a quiet, modest satisfaction, for I’ve shared a piece of deeply personal, lovingly crafted art. And so I return to my initial question: Who buys Nick Cave records? In the case of No More Shall We Part, the answer is simple, really. You do…if you’re smart.

– George Zahora

Mina 10 bästa vampyrfilmer

Här är min lista över de 10 bästa vampyr-filmerna. De är inte inbördes rangordnade.

The Lost Boys (1987)

Sovande staden Santa Carla, Kalifornien, terroriseras av ett gäng vampyrer. Kiefer Sutherland i sitt esse. Såg den på bio när den kom, och den gjorde ett bestående intryck. Rakt igenom häftig film, väldigt 80-tal. Gerard McCann’s “Cry Little Sister” bästa låten ur soundtracket.

Vampires (John Carpenter, 1998)

Hård, blodig och “gritty” film. James Woods passar som handsken i rollen som desillusionerad vampyrjägare åt Vatikanen.

Salem’s Lot (1979)

Lyckad filmatisering av Stephen King’s bok. Otäcka vampyrer, mer psykologisk smygande skräck än i många andra vampyrfilmer. Bra bok.

Blade 2 (2002)

Regisserad av Guillermo del Toro. En helt annan klass än 1:an och 3:an. Blade är ju Blade, honom behöver man inte gilla. Men här är vampyrmyten moderniserad och de klassiska vampyrerna övertrumfade av en ny generation blodsugare. Härlig action.

Fright Night (1985)

Ännu en tidstypisk 80-tals film. Charmig om tonåringar och en vampyr next-door.

30 Days of Night (2007)

Senaste tillskottet i listan. Mindre by i Alaska överrumplas av ett gäng vampyrer. Snygga vampyrer, survival-tema.

From Dusk Till Dawn (1996)

Robert Rodriguez och Quentin Tarantino skapade en klassiker med stort K. Nyskapande och väldigt snyggt filmad, stämningen är knivskarp. Genrebytet i mitten av filmen ger en väldigt speciell effekt… Såg den säkert 7-8 gånger på bio.

Underworld (2003)

Lite Masquerade-tema, vampyrmyten tagen till nutid och lite till. Väldigt snygg film, Kate Beckinsale perfekt i huvudrollen.

Dracula (Bram Stoker, 1992)

Vad kan man säga, den definitiva filmen om Dracula. Vacker, stämningsfull. Aningen flummig ibland, och man retar sig på Mina’s vampyr-vurmande. Oldman grym som Dracula.

Interview with the Vampire (1994)

Tom Cruise och Brad Pitt, vem hade trott det… Men filmen är suverän. Kirsten Dunst’s genombrott.

Det finns ett antal som inte platsade i min lista och det finns anledningar till det, men bland dem kan jag ju nämna dessa filmer som har försonande drag: Near Dark, Queen of the Damned (2002), Shadow of the Vampire (2000), Dance of the Vampires (Polanski, 1967), Innocent Blood (1992) med Anne Parillaud i huvudrollen…