Sunday, January 25, 2009

Rewind #13

Tapes 'N Tapes: Walk It Off (2008)

Walk It Off was deeply anticipated ever since Tapes 'N Tapes left their mark with their first album, The Loon, which absolutely blew the roof. Many people hoped that they could follow with an equally impressive display of raw nerve and stone shuddering strength but there were others who imagined a fall off from these guys. Quite often, through the annals of music history, we've seen the faltering of bands after flashing like a supernova right from the beginning and from the look of all the lists from the respectable crowds out there, Walk It Off didn't measure up. Well, I'm here to say that I like it a lot. It has many of the great elements we've heard before with Tapes 'N Tapes, from the blasting genius of "Headshock" to the cool wanderings of the song "Anvil". It's a blissful package they delivered to my ears this year and just about what I was expecting. I remember standing around a ringed light underneath the stars near the breath of midnight almost a year ago whilst listening to the first Tapes 'N Tapes album. It was a magical moment and a friend of mine asked me what I thought would come from these guys in the future. He was unsure that they'd give us more of what we were searching for, but I looked deep into the flames and listened to the blood pumping from the speakers. Then, in a moment, I knew that, even though everything shifts with change, we were in for a pleasant journey.

Earth: Deepa Mehta (1998)

Earth is the second of her elemental trilogy and, as with her movie "Fire" which I saw a couple of years ago, Deepa Mehta has made an astounding film that touches something vitally human and brutally honest. It's about the partition of India, a difficult time of transition for a nation that grew up never knowing independence. What are Muslims, Hindus, Sikhs, Parsees, even Christians going to do about this new-found reach for power? That's exactly what a group of friends, all hailing from a different theological background, must come to face as their world quickly begins to crumble around them. Told through the eyes of a young girl, Lenny, as she watches her nanny try to navigate the carnage of love and violence that envelopes all of them, we are witness to the tragedy of ideologies that will kill at will and the ripple effect that each death leaves in its wake. Friends who once loved each other dearly, turn into enemies and no one is left unharmed by the entire ordeal. Even Lenny must ultimately come to terms with a choice that she makes, which appears innocent to her but eventually burns with betrayal after everything is said and done. We've seen a few movies about the partition era in India here in America but even "Ghandi", which garnished such acclaim, doesn't delve deep into the truth of how humanity viciously tore out its own heart. Today, we still catch glimpses of the Indian world and the fighting that has ceased to quiet. Deepa Mehta has gorgeously revealed the roots of that struggle and effectively points out that if we can't even love those who are sitting at our table, family, friends, then all we will ever have is a world full of suffering.

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