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art-star. https://www.alicetragedy.org/blog <3 Sun, 20 Oct 2013 10:56:51 +0000 en-US hourly 1 http://wordpress.org/?v=3.6.1 A long time ago, in a galaxy far far away https://www.alicetragedy.org/blog/?p=6271 https://www.alicetragedy.org/blog/?p=6271#comments Sun, 20 Oct 2013 10:56:51 +0000 girl http://www.alicetragedy.org/blog/?p=6271 I have been putting off writing this post for a while now. Life is a much nicer place to be than the internet lately, so I have been enjoying it, rather than quietly documenting it from the sidelines as I used to.
For those (few) interested, here’s a small recap of the last couple of months.

RailsGirls:

I attended a RailsGirls event in January, and it changed my life. At the same time, I saw a lot of things that could be improved to make the experience as an attendee more enjoyable, which is why, in late August, I attended my very first event as a coach in Bratislava. That weekend also marked my six months at my new job. Really? Six months fighting with Ruby on Rails on an almost daily basis? Nine months ago, who would have thought I would be city-hopping, giving talks about the command line. But there is always a first time and I met some really great and interesting people, learned to speak better in public, and got a lot of free stickers. Most importantly: I always look forward to seeing even one of my “students” get so excited about making stuff, that she will seriously consider pursuing it.
(A side note: Lately there have been some waves around the issue of sexism in the world of tech; I don’t think it can ever be stressed enough that this has actually nothing to do with the Ruby community, with programming in general, or with the tech industry. Sexism, and any other form of discrimination is, unfortunately, a worldwide issue that spreads across all areas. Sadly, I don’t think it helps to think of ourselves (by “ourselves” I mean women) as victims. Maybe all an organisation like RailsGirls does is single out the women who want to be part of the industry and make an even bigger issue out of it than what it actually is; I don’t know, but Rails Girls was one of my first steps towards programming and all I want to do now is give back to the community.)

Meetups:

At the moment, I am a regular attendee of vienna.rb and of the wordpress meet up. It almost feels like having a family get-together, so I suggest that you join us if you are interested in hanging out, learning things, or meeting people. Pyladies, which I co-organise with Floor, is also coming up soon.

750words:

Years ago, when I was in high school, I picked up a creative writing book that advised to write daily, not necessarily well-crafted short essays, or stories; but rather three full pages (the “morning pages”) without thinking too much about the content, the reason being that it would help to loosen one’s fear of the blank page. Some years after that, I took part in Nanowrimo and, successive to that, signed up to a website called 750 Words which, inspired by the morning pages exercise, allows its user to write daily pages, check stats on writing speed and moods, and win badges. As I was in Bratislava, I decided to sign up for the 750 words monthly challenge; I have not stopped writing since then and always manage to find my daily 15-20 minutes to get the writing done. It is somewhat ironic that my blogging has drastically dropped since then, but you can’t be everywhere at once.

And now?

I am reading a lot of non-fiction (Gay Talese and Norman Mailer being some favourites), brushing up again on my typography knowledge, very slowly trying to get my head around Javascript because I am terrible at it, and have a bunch of side projects in the works. I also played GTA for the first time in my adult life last week (I know, unacceptable, but that’s what boyfriends with playstations are for). And though my blogging is sporadic, it still is my first love, so I am hoping to be back soon..

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Let Go and Dive In https://www.alicetragedy.org/blog/?p=6254 https://www.alicetragedy.org/blog/?p=6254#comments Fri, 02 Aug 2013 10:45:19 +0000 girl http://www.alicetragedy.org/blog/?p=6254 Freddie Lloyd (of Ursine Vulpine fame) struck again, this time not at as a musician, but as a music video artist. Partnering with vintage effects and his best ally – nature – he created a beautiful, ethereal video for the first single of up-and-coming, dressed-in-black UK-based band Dive In.

The images themselves are wild and at times blurry, with an analogue feel to them. The music follows suit: vintage-y keyboards, a hint of nostalgia and Matthew Guttridge’s peculiar, slightly feminine vocals. With its sultry drums and 80s hooks, Let Go clearly aims at becoming everyone’s favorite hit of the summer.

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You’re in my blood. https://www.alicetragedy.org/blog/?p=6245 https://www.alicetragedy.org/blog/?p=6245#comments Fri, 26 Jul 2013 10:50:11 +0000 girl http://www.alicetragedy.org/blog/?p=6245 A girl sinks to the bottom of the sea, a boy crawls on the ground and closes his eyes; the city turns on its flickering lights. For his first single Cool Blood, a perfect pop song full of the right beats and hazy, melodic harmonies, Farewell Dear Ghost combines the familiar streets of a city and a bunch of twenty-something-year-olds with torches to take the viewer onto a journey through the night. The result is a modest and mesmerising music video, torn between the realm of dreams and childish games and the darkness-laden adult world.

Farewell Dear Ghost will be playing a free, acoustic set at Ink Music‘s annual Flowmarkt today, in Vienna, at 4pm. Bring tissues!

Philipp Szalay by Lena Prehal

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A desperado with a sour twist https://www.alicetragedy.org/blog/?p=6236 https://www.alicetragedy.org/blog/?p=6236#comments Thu, 20 Jun 2013 16:46:51 +0000 girl http://www.alicetragedy.org/blog/?p=6236 One of my favorite childhood memories is that of driving through the desert in Eastern California in August; funny actually, since fifteen years later I find myself moaning and groaning about the rocketing Viennese temperatures. My ride back in the day – a minivan with broken AC – was obviously not as glamorous as the car Swim Deep drive around in their new video, but the feeling of freedom and happiness was probably very similar.
Filmed in and around LA, King City follows the band on a carefree trip across the desert from gas stations to diners. Directed by Georgia Hudson, it’s at once hyper-real and dream-like, with some scenes, like that of a woman’s mysterious appearance, feeling almost drug-induced. Of course, one could say that these landscapes have been filmed a thousand times and that Swim Deep’s beach grunge sounds a little too familiar, but maybe that’s where the strength of their music lays: we’ve all seen these dunes, these red diner seats, and we’ve all once felt like being everything we’re not, so we can relate. Also, let’s face it: Jenny Lee Lindberg is pretty awesome.

And if you’re feeling up for the challenge, Swim Deep are giving away a free, signed vinyl copy of their upcoming record Where The Heaven Are We, which is getting released on August 5th, for one bold and courageous fan who’ll cover the track King City.

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War & Peace https://www.alicetragedy.org/blog/?p=6230 https://www.alicetragedy.org/blog/?p=6230#comments Thu, 06 Jun 2013 14:56:39 +0000 girl http://www.alicetragedy.org/blog/?p=6230 Almost exactly three years ago, I was getting into a venue on a whim to check out unknown, local bands and coming out of it a couple of hours later with the certainty that something big was gonna happen. The last three years were full of decision-making, deadlines and confusion, frustration and at times, the feeling that things are coming together just right; and if it’s starting to sound like the hardships of a relationship, it’s because that’s what it almost was.. In the last couple of years I’ve seen Stefan Galler grow his music and this album like a plant or a pet and because life is strange and full of signs and coincidences, the place where I met him for the very first time is also the place where he’ll be presenting his debut War & Peace, released by the newly founded Office records. A million things could have gone wrong, but they haven’t and now we have a beautiful white 12” in our hands that means much more than just a record by a rocking band on stage: the feeling that we’ve finally made it.

 

 

Stefan Galler will be opening for Danish band Alcoholic Faith Mission on June 6th at B72; get tickets here.

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Like I could see for miles https://www.alicetragedy.org/blog/?p=6214 https://www.alicetragedy.org/blog/?p=6214#comments Fri, 26 Apr 2013 11:14:57 +0000 girl http://www.alicetragedy.org/blog/?p=6214 Swim Deep have this thing.
Hailing from Birmingham, they’ve clearly missed out on the beach in their childhoods; barely out of teenagerhood and already supporting acts such as Two Door Cinema Club, their “beach grunge”, at times echoing The Jesus and Mary Chain, brought back crappily dyed hair and torn Nirvana shirts into the hearts (and closets and fashion blogs) of the masses. Their latest video for single She Changes the Weather, filmed in NYC, is full of slow-motion, water and darkness, and portrays admiration from afar at its best.

Their debut album Where The Heaven Are We will be released on July 29th; the single is out on Chess Club/RCA Vector on May 12th (7” and digital bundle).

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On improvisation and tic-tac boxes https://www.alicetragedy.org/blog/?p=6209 https://www.alicetragedy.org/blog/?p=6209#comments Sat, 06 Apr 2013 19:42:00 +0000 girl http://www.alicetragedy.org/blog/?p=6209 The last time I sat at a piano was a rather long time ago – at least a couple of months. Though growing up with a musically inclined father, my harpsichord lessons every Wednesday afternoon at the conservatory were my personal nightmare for years since I was five, until I moved to Vienna and gave up the harpsichord for the piano (and, later, the drums). The first time I sat in front of my teacher’s piano, with my fingers used to keys that give a certain resistance, I accidentally hammered a light-hearted piece on it and made the walls tremble. What I got was an eyebrow-raise and a warning I should play more gently if i didn’t want to destroy the poor thing by the end of the lesson.

Clearly Düsseldorf-hailing Hauschka did not listen or pay attention to his conservative piano teacher the way I did; in all of his performances, the piano – though a friend – also becomes a foe, an instrument with which to start a battle, a restless horse to be tamed and defeated by the end of the piece. With the help of clips and tic-tac boxes, of things that screech and rattle, his music is at once eerie, enchanting and adventurous.

Hauschka will be playing on April 8th in the beautiful setting of the  Vienna Stadtsaal. It’s bound to be wild and intimate; don’t miss it.

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Lying To You With Different Names https://www.alicetragedy.org/blog/?p=6200 https://www.alicetragedy.org/blog/?p=6200#comments Sun, 24 Feb 2013 14:36:33 +0000 girl http://www.alicetragedy.org/blog/?p=6200 Slowly but surely, Keaton Henson is getting a reputation for his awkward videos, the first memorable one being You Don’t Know How Lucky You Are, which strangely reminded me of Grant Wood’s American Gothic. With his beautiful single Lying To You off the upcoming Birthdays, he strikes again, this time in a video directed by Autumn De Wilde.

It’s interesting to note that the girl appears very, very similar to the little choir girl in Death Cab For Cutie’s Different Names For The Same Thing (by the same director) where she also lip-syncs. Coincidence?

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How little of me remains https://www.alicetragedy.org/blog/?p=6186 https://www.alicetragedy.org/blog/?p=6186#comments Wed, 13 Feb 2013 14:00:12 +0000 girl http://www.alicetragedy.org/blog/?p=6186 Since the Nowhere Train album came out at the beginning of Winter, I have found myself in awe of Ian Fisher‘s voice. In a record that has various folk, country and americana influences, his song Are You There stands out as something soft and maybe more emotionally charged. In that very same heartfelt way, his single Why Do I Go? (taken from his upcoming album as Ian Fisher & The Present out March 1st via Seayou Records) loses itself in the meanders of Ian’s mind as he questions himself on the essence of love and uncertainty.

Throughout the video, directed by musician and artist Anna Kohlweis (better known as Paperbird/Squalloscope), we follow him and Ryan Thomas Carpenter as they fold their shirts, shave, pack their bags, and head off into the unknown after burning sheets of song lyrics.

 

How little things remain around me
How little of me remains
The great big things I once believed
Now mean little to nothing

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Winter Villains: The Air https://www.alicetragedy.org/blog/?p=6178 https://www.alicetragedy.org/blog/?p=6178#comments Mon, 04 Feb 2013 14:54:44 +0000 girl http://www.alicetragedy.org/blog/?p=6178 Autumn is approaching. The sky is grey, the fog is imminent though the air is not yet bitterly cold. A man sits outside, has a cigarette on the shore of a lake. A woman packs her suitcase carefully, and in no hurry puts on a hat and leaves what seems to be a hotel room. This is the setting for Winter Villains‘ new video The Air. The track starts off with quiet, sombre humming, but in truth the band from Cardiff make chamber pop music with light folk touches, at times almost reminiscent of Dry The River‘s explosive melodies; tracks that could be filled with melancholy but instead have a bit of an uplifting kick to them.


The Air, released today, follows two parallel stories, beautifully ethereal and always on the verge of crossing paths with one another.

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