Writer Owen Hatherly has a really interesting (and perhaps slightly disheartening) video over at the Guardian in which he “explores the impact of architecture on Manchester’s cultural scene – and wonders how, in the city that helped break The Sex Pistols and Joy Division, property development became the new punk rock.”
I wanted to find a way of communicating the complexities found in literature and highlighting the similarities and differences in the writing styles of various authors.The structure of a novel and its punctuation, parts of speech, and words per sentence were used to generate the final complex patterns. Any piece of literature can be visualised using these approaches, but the focus of the project was the novel On the Road, by Jack Kerouac, because of its importance to me while I was growing up in Denver, Colorado – a key city within the novel.
For this project I gathered all of the data by hand, counting words and sentences, and carefully dividing a battered copy of On the Road into key themes (such as Women, Parties, Sketches of Regional Life, and so on) using markers and highlighters.
I was able to reduce the entire novel into a stack of paper filled with lists of numbers. I found this process of compression incredibly satisfying. Using these numbers, I created the graphics by hand in Adobe Illustrator instead of using a specific program to generate the visuals.
Finally, the whole aesthetic of the series of posters and books was based around the time period when On the Road was written. I selected typography that referenced typefaces in use at the time, and I chose the colours used to represent key themes within the novel from 1940s vintage car paint swatches.
I just can’t motivate myself to write these days. We moved into our new apartment because it had an extra bedroom, a room where we could keep the computer and desk, away from the lure of the TV and companionship. Well, the computer has a Room of Its Own now. But unless there’s an Apple Script I’m unaware of, I don’t believe it’s been doing my writing.
Work is consuming even my dreams these days. Part of my job is to maintain a website that has a million pages–seemingly scattered around without much consideration to architecture–and a thousand directories. I was trying to describe it to N last night. “It’s like, we just throw more and more subdirectories into subdirectories and it’s…it’s like the Winchester Mystery House.”
“Staircases to nowhere.”
“Exactly. Hey, that’s good. I’ll have to remember that. To write about.” (Then I frantically searched my bag for a notebook, which didn’t exist on the plane I’d have liked it to.) “Can you text that to me?”
And so he did, because N cares about my writing.
So everyone’s favorite Italian postpunk band Tiger! Shit! Tiger! Tiger! are playing three shows at SXSW, practically as we speak.* Last year, for CMJ, we did a short interview and only now am I getting around to posting it. Because I am the most unreliable person in the world. Please read on! Oh, and also, download Whispers, a song off their new EP, HERE. An also, if you’re at SXSW (aha, no wonder the city’s so empty today), you should really go check them out.
T!S!T!T!: The Official TSTD Interview
Where did you all meet, and how long have you been together?
G: Nicola is my brother. Diego was one of our best friends. We met him in High School. We always had common interests in music but we didn’t start to play seriously together until 2006.
Who/what are your musical influences?
We grew up listening to 90s American indie rock bands, such as Built to Spill, Sonic Youth, Fugazi, Pavement and almost all the records we could find from the kill rock stars catalog, and Nicola and I also listened tons of british pop music and obscure post punk bands.
Do you guys still live in Foligno? What’s the scene like there, and in Italy in general?
We are still living in Foligno, a very small city in the center of Italy, but despite what you might imagine, we are lucky to have one of the best rock clubs in the country. Over the years we’ve seen bands from all over the world and this certainly added to our musical growth. Unfortunately, haven’t had the same experience with Italian music in general. Here there’s a long cultural tradition of classic and melodic pop music, that is so far from our personal background! Hick!
In your experience, how do Italian audiences differ from NYC audiences?
It’s totally the opposite. Maybe you have a different way to approach to live music in U.S. Here in Italy the mainstream bands have a great audience, of course, but it’s not the same for underground bands. In NY people listened to our music in a very interested way, even if we were totally unknown. Here in Italy people don’t care about your gigs–they’re only waiting for the show to end to dance to electro music.
Of all your shows, which one has been your favorite so far?
For sure our first show in Milan. It was a messy and weird show, because we were totally out of minds because we were so excited to perform. Also, our last gig in Brooklyn at Tandem Bar, during the CMJ 09.
How often do you guys get to tour outside of Italy? Do you have any plans for an American tour?
Our first trip outside Italy was the U.S. It was totally exciting for us. We played twice in NYC, both times at CMJ–in 2008 and 2009. Austin is our third time in the U.S. and we love it! We haven’t yet planned an American tour but we hope that it could be possible very soon. At the moment we have some projects for a European mini tours (Germany, France, U.K) during springtime.
I’m thrilled that you guys came back to play CMJ this past fall. Aside from your own shows, which shows/bands were you guys most excited to see?
Pissed Jeans! They totally blew our minds.
Are you working on a new album currently?
Yes, we just finished to record our new EP, which we’ll present for the first time during SXSW. We’re very proud of it.
*Slight exaggeration. So tired today.
Where did she go?I am lazy. If you're bored, go visit my tumblr, updated daily with other people's witticisms and erudition.
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