DAVID BYRNE – ” True Stories “

Posted: November 29, 2018 in ALBUMS, MUSIC
Tags: , , , , ,

david byrne 1989

If mere mortals were as capable and accomplished as David Byrne then we would most definitely be having this conversation in this galaxy so far, far away!

David Byrne first introduced himself to the world in 1975 as the frontman of the American new wave pioneers, Talking Heads. Since their disbandment in 1991, he has released a prolific collection of solo albums and works across a broad range of media including film, photography, opera, fiction, non-fiction and theatre.

Here are some of the great moments in the career of an artist boasting limitless creativity, and an overwhelming passion to transform the world around him for all.

TRUE STORIES,

David Byrne made his debut on the big screen in 1986 when he wrote, directed and starred in True Stories. He described the film as ‘… an ode to the extraordinariness of ordinary American life …’, reviewers described it as ‘60 minutes on acid’ – proving that with David Byrne at the helm, even an exploration of the mundane is a potentially mind-bending experience!

To celebrate the anniversary of the film’s release,True Stories, A Film by David Byrne: The Complete Soundtrack will be released on vinyl LP, CD, and digital formats on November 23rd

AMERICAN UTOPIA

Released earlier this year, American Utopia is a celebration of euphoria designed to remind us of all that’s good in the world. The first single, “Everybody’s Coming to My House” was co-written with longtime collaborator and all-round musical superhero, Brian Eno.

“The chicken imagines a heaven, full of roosters and plenty of corn,” sang David Byrne on Everyday Is A Miracle, an avian highlight from this, his first solo album since 2004. Though it isn’t quite the accessible treat some were anticipating, for others, American Utopia is one of Byrne’s best; heavily electronic, the record boasts production by Thomas Bartlett, Daniel Lopatin and Rodaidh McDonald, among others, and there are pleasing touches of the global, electronic funk Byrne has regularly released on his Luaka Bop label. The likes of Gasoline And Dirty Sheets might bounce along on a sturdy dancehall beat, but much of American Utopia is a wry reflection of the times we live in: Bullet is a joyous song about a brutal shooting, for example, while I Dance Like This moves suddenly between pretty piano verses and industrial choruses. More than poultry thrills here, it turns out.

“These songs attempt to describe the world we live in now—and that world, when we look at it, as we live in it, as it impacts on us – immediately commands us to ask ourselves – is there another way? A better way? A different way?

ABORETUM

Since the 1990’s, David Byrne’s visual art has been shown in contemporary art galleries and museums around the world.  In 2006, his sketchbook of tree drawings titled, Arboretum was published, featuring a decade’s worth of “mental maps of imaginary territory” earning him the title of ‘visual philosopher’ in the art community.

LOVE THIS GIANT

David Byrne has released an extensive range of experimental collaborations with cutting-edge female artists. One shining example is the brazen album, Love This Giant(2012), written and recorded with St. Vincent. The formidable pair of alt-art-rockers combine dissonant textures and eclectic, juxtaposing, melodic hooks to create an immersive but challenging work unlike anything else in either musician’s prior solo efforts.

TALKING HEADS 

In 1974 Byrne moved to New York City with a dream of starting a band. He was joined by friend, Chris Frantz and his girlfriend Tina Weymouth who would become the band Talking Heads by 1975.

The group found themselves at the forefront of the new wave movement that was bubbling up in New York’s underground music scene, setting themselves apart and defining an era with their refined, minimalist sound, slick suits and intellectual overtones.

MY LIFE IN THE BUSH OF GHOSTS 

During his time in Talking Heads, Byrne also took on a number of outside projects. In 1979 he collaborated with Brian Eno on an album titled, My Life in the Bush of Ghosts which attracted considerable critical acclaim due to its early use of analogue sampling and found sounds that would form the basis of modern-day electronica.

CYCLING 

Motivated by the freedom and exhilaration, David Byrne is an avid cycling enthusiast. In 2008 he designed a series of bicycle parking racks that were later sold as artworks, featuring images corresponding with their locations. He has also written widely on the subject in his 2009 non-fiction book, Bicycle Diaries.

THE SIMPSONS 

In 2003, Byrne set a benchmark for cameos when he guest starred as himself on The Simpsons in an episode titled, ‘Dude, Where’s My Ranch?’ for which he penned and performed the classic number, ‘Everybody Hates Ned Flanders’.

HERE LIES LOVE 

In late 2005, Byrne teamed up with electronic artist, Fatboy Slim to produce, Here Lies Love, a disco opera about the life of Imelda Marcos, the controversial former First Lady of the Philippines. Some music from this piece was debuted at Adelaide Festival of Arts in Australia in February 2006.

REASONS TO BE CHEERFUL

Obama was on his way out, Trump was on his way up, and Byrne wanted to alleviate the gloom by collating stories of positive change from around the world. Playing the part of a dapper academic with his sharp grey suit and shock of white hair, David Byrne presenting a slide show of uplifting human stories designed to remind audiences of all the Reasons to be Cheerful.

With a dedication to making the world a better place at the heart of all of his projects, David Byrne is a rare and true example of the highly evolved. The artist has dedicated his life’s work to looking on the bright side and asking if things can be done differently – for the better of all.

American Utopia

“The chicken imagines a heaven, full of roosters and plenty of corn,” sang David Byrne on Everyday Is A Miracle, an avian highlight from this, his first solo album since 2004. Though it isn’t quite the accessible treat some were anticipating, for others, American Utopia is one of Byrne’s best; heavily electronic, the record boasts production by Thomas Bartlett, Daniel Lopatin and Rodaidh McDonald, among others, and there are pleasing touches of the global, electronic funk Byrne has regularly released on his Luaka Bop label. The likes of Gasoline And Dirty Sheets might bounce along on a sturdy dancehall beat, but much of American Utopia is a wry reflection of the times we live in: Bullet is a joyous song about a brutal shooting, for example, while I Dance Like This moves suddenly between pretty piano verses and industrial choruses. More than poultry thrills here, it turns out.

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