Mordant Music ‎– Central Office Of Information + Mordant Music = MisinforMation

Label:
British Film Institute ‎– BFIVD898, Mordant Music ‎– MM044
Format:
DVD, DVD-Video, PAL
Country:
Released:
Genre:
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Credits

Notes

"A collaboration between Mordant Music and BFI, who commissioned MM to spend eight months researching and re-scoring an array of 70s and 80s public information films and documentary shorts produced by the Central Office of Information (COI)."

Original film titles:
Mindless Reverie: Magpies - House (1984)
A Dark Social Template: New Towns In Britain (1974)
Attack Plus 22 Days: Perspective - Near Enough (1985)
Attenuated Shadows: Illusions (a Film about Solvent Abuse) (1983)
A Double Room In A Single Bed: Ideal Homes (c.1970)
Black And White Sound: Culham Labs (1984)
Self's Mordant Tone: Inkjet Printer (Living Tomorrow) (1979)
Televasion: Sinclair Pocket TV (1980)
Artificially Sympathetic: AIDS - Iceberg (c.1986)
GeoMetric FaMine: Perspective - Computer Aided Design (1985)
Ridyll: Looking at Prehistoric Sites (1982)
FraMeforM: Birth of a Nematode (Roots) (1972)
MisinforMation: Cardiff Ship Simulator (CASSIM) (1983)
The Dry Dock Dybbuk: The Sea in Their Blood (1983)

Barcode and Other Identifiers

  • Barcode: 5 035673 008980

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June 27, 2012
"Information is infinitely malleable, it can be easily manipulated so that it diverges from its original course and intention. The result... MisinforMation"

With this objective in mind and armed with the considerable archival footage to be found within the walls of the British Film Institute, Baron Mordant has recast these short films and advertisements of the 1970s and 80s from the UK in his own mold. The period of time is a curious choice as the soundtrack which Mordant Music provide is thoroughly 21st century. Actually, it's downright impressive just how well the washes, key lines and devilishly inserted melodies mesh up with their visual counterparts. It is almost like witnessing a dance between the promise of the future and the concrete inevitability of current times. If you have never heard Mordant Music before, this DVD may be the perfect introduction into the wonderfully skewed world of Mr. Ian Hicks. His CV is one that is exhaustive, to put it mildly. He has been operating under a plethora of guises since the late 1980s and is the man behind the Mordant Music label which is home to one of the most varied and incisive rosters ever assembled.

Parsing through this cinema within a cinema, you begin to wonder... am I watching this or is it watching me. There are moments contained within the scope of this release which would unnerve even the hardiest of aural explorers; it easily would undo and then ignite the safety line for many a visual aficionado of the surreal. The lines between fact and fiction, reality and myth, pathos and prophecy are all interestingly examined. They are then deconstructed utilizing sounds which may ring out as the genres listed at the title of this review so that by the time the final film "The Dry Dock Dybbuk" concludes you aren't precisely sure of where you are or what, if anything, has changed since the days these productions first were made and aired.

An example: even though I am in the United States, I'm a member of the generation of children shown in many of the clips contained within 'MisinforMation'; my childhood was dominated by the landscapes these same kiddies play within and pass through. It was the first wave of suburban industrial expansion in those days and watching this brings it all back with startling clarity. The way some of the tall grass moves and those thorny, thorny wind shorn bushes which tore at one's clothing jump right out of the screen at me. It is though I am there again. The seamless merging of industry and environment that was going to bring us all into the new age, yet now sits rotting, becoming lost in it's own decrepitude.

You'd think with such an impacting new addition to his catalog, I'd have rated this higher... the only hitch is that I cannot buy the music on it's own. Even though there are a couple moments where he reprises some of the brilliance contained within his series of Travelogues, almost all of the material is new having been composed specifically for 'MisinforMation'. It is hoped that he'll rectify this as soon as possible.