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Baker's Dozen

Parallel Worlds: Peter Strickland's Favourite Albums
Colm McAuliffe , June 3rd, 2014 13:03

On the occasion of the Berberian Sound Studio and Katalin Varga director releasing Wasp Boutique, a collaboration between Art-Errorist and Zsolt Sőrés, on his record label, and with a new feature film on the way, he sits down with Colm McAuliffe to talk 13 formative favourites


A Hawk And A Hacksaw - You Have Already Gone To The Other World
This is supposed to partly act as a posthumous soundtrack to Paradjanov's film in the Ukrainian Carpathians, Shadows of Our Forgotten Ancestors, which is one of my favourite films. There's also various traditional music from neighbouring Hungary and Romania. Appropriating folkloric music is always risky. Some of the most heinous music to my ears has been from people bastardising local traditional music with buffed production, beats and so on. This on the other hand is very OK, and it has a faithful version of the wedding theme from the film. The cimbalom pieces (at least I think it's a cimbalom) 'Where No Horse Neighs And No Crow Flies' and 'Bury Me In The Clothes I Was Married In' are highlights as well. There is such a huge amount of eastern European folk music available and it can be hard to discern. Apart from this, I sometimes go back to the very early recordings by Zoltán Kodály or Béla Bartók, which are completely pure. If you're lucky, you can chance upon some really wild stuff. I remember buying a homemade CD-R of folk music from Covasna county in Transylvania when we shot Katalin Varga. All the women singing are overly exuberant and wildly out of tune. A man singing on another song sounds as if most of his teeth are missing and you can hear the phlegm tugging against his throat the more he gets into it. It's fantastic. It's quite unusual to hear something like that in this age of Auto-Tune. I love that shambolic quality, which is sadly too often sanitised. Stupidly, I lost that CD-R.