KIOS at the Movies: People Who do Noise / NOISEFEST / Ambiology
Today's episode of KIOS at the Movies is very special. In conjunction with my show Ambiology, which airs on Sunday nights at midnight, where we celebrate Ambient and Experimental music, we are also celebrating NOISEFEST which is happening on May 12th at Project Project.
I wanted to go back and cover a classic experimental music documentary, PEOPLE WHO DO NOISE.
Directed by Adam Cornelius, PEOPLE WHO DO NOISE came out in 2008 and it covers the experimental and noise music scene in Portland, Oregon in the mid-aughts. I love this film because it feels like a journey of curiosity and discovery. The film doesn't tell you what to think about the people who are making sounds that most of the world would probably consider unpleasant; it presents the work as is and lets you decide. The film uses long takes, sometimes painfully long, which in itself is an artistic choice completely in line with the subject matter.
The film and the artists in the film are all trying to discover something. Whether it's music or art, later generations have been handed schools, guidelines, and rule books for how music, cinema, painting or whatever medium should look, how it should sound and who should perform it, and what the film and the musicians in the film are doing is trying to move beyond those rules and just make something.
Because of the subject, the film has an engrossing sound design. The lo-fi cinematography, which looks somewhat dated as mid-aughts digital cameras had a very specific look, adds to the charm and is incredibly beautiful. You really feel like you're wandering through a world that is unseen by the majority of people.
I think this is a film for anyone who is interested in sound, music, and in exploring underground art scenes.
People who Do Noise is available on VOD. Ambiology is available at KIOS.org and NOISEFEST is on May 12th