I find television very educating. Every time somebody turns on the set, I go into the other room and read a book. - Groucho Marx

TODAY IN NETWORK AWESOME MAGAZINE


by Network Awesome
Jan. 30, 2015
Jason Urick is highly regarded in the Baltimore music and arts scene, through his work in WZT Hearts (pronounced “Wet Hearts”) and at the Floristree Space where he has curated many shows and festivals. His debut solo album "Husbands" on Thrill Jockey gained wide praise despite being difficult to pin down. We learned of Jason's interest in non-western music via Mark Brown from 120 Megabytes, and we've been completely blown away by his selection for today's Live Music Show. We pestered him with a few questions about it and he was gracious enough to answer:

NAMag: Can you tell me a bit about how you got into this kind of music and how you continue to learn more about it?

Jason Urick: It's tough to pinpoint and I'm not sure that it's even really proper to say "this kind of music". For better or worse music all sort of blurs together for me. Youtube has lead me to tons of music that I wouldn't have had access to for sure... with more an more of the populations of African countries and Middle Eastern countries having access to computers there has certainly been an influx of home produced music and availibility of it outside of the original region, which is super...

Questions by Network Awesome writers and editors. We're a lot of fun - you can find us at apocalypse-themed parties, museums of science and industry, and snarky media-obsessed websites. 


by Brian Correia
Jan. 29, 2015

“This is the true story... of eight strangers... picked to live in a house...work together and have their lives taped... to find out what happens... when people stop being polite... and start getting real... The Real World.”

You know what it is. With one measly sentence, the world was introduced to what would become known as “reality TV.” And what better place for the format to debut than MTV (Music Television), a station that until shortly before The Real World's 1992 debut, primarily played new wave music videos? Well, that's what the show's co-creators Mary-Ellis Bunim and Jonathan Murray thought, anyway. We have them to thank (or blame) for 20 years of sex, booze, and bitch slaps (not to mention my favorite reality TV image, Survivor champ Richard Hatch's pixelated penis.) But the truth is, the network that today drags TV down to new depths with trashploitation shows like My Super Sweet 16 and, of course, Jersey Shore, was once a magnet for young (and weird!) artists with fresh voices...

Brian Correia is a budding computer scientist and aspiring writer from Boston, Massachusetts who couldn't decide which hip-hop lyric to put in his byline. The top three, in no particular order, were as follows: “cooler than a cucumber in a bowl of hot sauce,” “spiced out Calvin Coolidge loungin' with six duelers,” and “I got techniques drippin' out my buttcheeks.” He is on Twitter (@brianmcorreia) and Tumblr (brianmcorreia.tumblr.com) like the rest of the kids.

by Chris Martin
Jan. 28, 2015

Have you heard that cinema is dying? Yes, it’s true! The motion picture, the dominating cultural force of the 20th century is on its last legs as traditional film cameras and film distribution is being replaced by the inexpensive and convenient digital descendant of the original moving image. The ongoing arguments for and against digital cinema have been covered relentlessly in the filmic community and compiled succinctly by Christopher Kenneally in the 2012 documentary Side by Side.

Even those that don’t care about film production have been dragged into this mass requiem of the seventh art. Oscar darlings such as The Artist (Hazanavicius, 2011) and Hugo (Scorcese, 2012) have delivered the intensive nostalgia of the century old art form to the forefront of the public consciousness by reminding modern moviegoers of bygone eras that they were almost certainly not alive during, let alone actively participating in.

Leon Carax’s 2012 film Holy Motors, his first feature length work in over a decade, fits perfectly into this autumnal eulogy for the classic ideal of film and would have fit right into the Academy Award narrative if it wasn’t for its decidedly obtuse metaphor for the death of film as well as its delightfully shocking, surreal imagery (apparently the academy ins’t ready for CGI snakelike monsters having graphic sex and a man coming home to his family of chimpanzees)...

Christopher Martin recently graduated from the University of Massachusetts, Amherst with a degree in English and a specialization in Film Studies. Shockingly, he is currently underemployed. In his free time Chris likes to read old science fiction novels, enjoy what little nightlife Western Massachusetts has to offer, and watch as many films as possible. He also spends too much time on Tumblr.

by Robert Bellach
Jan. 22, 2015
With the possible exception of the Mindlink[ii], the Video Music may be the strangest Atari device ever created. It was 1975. Atari had already a smashing success with the home version of Pong, but it was still before the world-changer that would be the Atari 2600. Engineer Bob Brown, who had worked on the prototype Home Pong console, "decided to make another component that would take advantage of Atari's video display technology and act as a bridge between the television set and the stereo system."[iii] The end result was the Atari Video Music. At first glance, it looked like yet another boring stereo component. One must remember that at this time, hi-fi stereos, TVs, and other electronic components with fake wood particle board siding were extremely popular. Of course, woodgrain was the key fashion accessory for consumer appliances in the 70s...
Robert A. Bellach has mixed feelings about his ability to write a snappy bio in the third person. However, he has been obsessive about vintage pop culture since childhood, and is glad to undertake any pursuit that allows him to share this enthusiasm. Feel free to contact him at robert@networkawesome.com

by Brian Correia
Jan. 21, 2015

It’s a familiar tale to those who have just watched a documentary about it: In 1925, a student named Margaret Mead ventured to the six-hundred person Samoan island of Ta’u on an anthropological mission to study adolescence. She was assigned this task by her professor at Columbia, the legendary “Father of Anthropology,” Franz Boas. Adolescence, as far as they knew it in America and Europe, was a hellish, stressful time for all involved parties; A blood-sweat-and-tears-soaked bungle of fits and zits that had seemingly been that way since the beginning of time. Was it like this all over? That’s what he intended for Mead to find out.

And find out she did. Mead moved into the US naval dispensary in Samoa, learned a whopping (or meager, depending on whose side you’re on) five hundred words of the Samoan language, and dove right in. Based on her observations of the inhabitants of Ta’u and her interviews with local adolescent girls, she found the culture to be tame, peaceful, promiscuous, and even (mon dieur!) incestuous...

Brian Correia is a budding computer scientist and aspiring writer from Boston, Massachusetts who couldn't decide which hip-hop lyric to put in his byline. The top three, in no particular order, were as follows: “cooler than a cucumber in a bowl of hot sauce,” “spiced out Calvin Coolidge loungin' with six duelers,” and “I got techniques drippin' out my buttcheeks.” He is on Twitter (@brianmcorreia) and Tumblr (brianmcorreia.tumblr.com) like the rest of the kids.