The Godfather of Punk Iggy Pop is back—in animated form. This time around, Iggy stars in “Run Like a Villain,” a new animated music video released in conjunction with the upcoming reissue of his 1982 work Zombie Birdhouse.
The new video is director by Polish helmer Marta Kacprzak and features the animated version of Pop jumping in to volcanoes, surviving snapping alligators and dancing like a madman. The project was inspired by a photo by Esther Friedman. The musician’s sixth solo studio album will be reissued on vinyl and CD on June 28 via Caroline International. Pop also stars in Jim Jarmusch’s new zombie movie The Dead Don’t Die, which was released in theaters today.
FRIDAY, Nov. 23, 2018 — When a child with autism can play the piano or sing a song, their brains may benefit, new research suggests.
Music therapy increased connectivity in key brain networks, according to the researchers. Not only that, the sessions improved social communication skills and quality of life for the patient’s family.
“The universal appeal of music makes it globally applicable and can be implemented with relatively few resources on a large scale in multiple settings such as home and school,” said study co-senior author Aparna Nadig. She is an associate professor in the School of Communication Sciences and Disorders at McGill University in Montreal.
The study included 51 children with autism, aged 6 to 12, who were randomly assigned to either a music therapy group or a control group.
Children in the music group did 45-minute sessions in which they sang, played different instruments and worked with a therapist to engage in interaction. The children in the control group worked with the same therapist on interactive play, but no musical activities.
After three months, parents of children in the music group reported greater improvements in their children’s communication skills and family quality of life, compared with parents of children in the control group.
Parents of children in both groups did not report reductions in autism severity.
Brain scans revealed that the children in the music group had increased connectivity between auditory and motor regions of the brain. They also had decreased connectivity between auditory and visual regions, which are often overconnected in people with autism, the authors said.
The findings were published recently in the journal Translational Psychiatry.
“These findings are exciting and hold much promise for autism intervention,” lead author Megha Sharda, a postdoctoral fellow at the International Laboratory for Brain, Music and Sound at the University of Montreal, said in a university news release.
But further research is needed, the study authors noted.
The U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention has more on autism.
A Woman’s Place: Animation and Illustration Brit.co continues its series devoted to spotlighting women in male-dominated industries by turning an eye on our favorite art form. This must-read article features insight from animator Mel Maduro, comics artist Megan Kearney, and Black Women Animate founder Taylor Shaw.
’Legend of Zelda’ Animated Series Coming from Castlevania Producer? Adi Shankar posted on Instagram last week that he was working with a Japanese video game company to adapt a popular franchise into a new toon — the official reveal is set for November 16, but a leak reveals that the project in question in Nintendo’s iconic fantasy adventure.
Music in Animation at The Musicians Institute L.A. On Nov. 13, White Bear PR and The Musicians Institute are presenting a panel discussion with Toon Town composers Andy Bean (The Muppet Babies), Frederik Wiedmann (The Dragon Prince), Keith Horn (The Muppet Babies), Kristopher Carter (Young Justice: Outsiders), Lolita Ritmanis (Marvel Rising: Secret Warriors) and Michael McCuistion (Batman & Harley Quinn), moderated by Animag’s own Editor-in-Chief, Ramin Zahed. The talk is scheduled for 7:30-9:30 p.m. at the MI Concert Hall.
Music is an important part of life for people in every culture. Most of us associate certain songs with specific events or periods in our lives – a song can remind us of the good times and the bad times, the first kiss, a bad breakup, and big life event… and who can resist the simple pleasures of singing at the top of your lungs in the car or in the shower? We all have music we listen to when we’re happy, and music we play over and over when we’re sad. If you enjoy smoking marijuana, you may find that your musical experience is enhanced under the influence of cannabis.
Why does music sound better high?
There are several possible reasons:
Cannabis is a stress reliever. When your body and mind are relaxed, you’re more attuned to music – the mental chatter has slowed or stopped, and you are able to appreciate music on a deeper level. You are more focused on the melody, harmony, rhythm, and lyrics and it’s easy to get ‘lost’ in a song.
Cannabis affects the area of the brain responsible for processing auditory input. A study found that when research subjects were exposed to burning marijuana leaves, they experienced better recall of lyrics. They were also better able to pick up differences in sounds coming from various instruments. Some even reported that they experienced synaesthesia, a phenomenon where the line between auditory and visual input is blurred (the phenomenon of ‘hearing’ colors and ‘seeing’ sounds).
Cannabis also causes the brain to loosen its filters. Normally, your brain has to filter out a great deal of irrelevant stimuli and data that would cause total overwhelm as you go about your day. Even when you listen to music, you typically don’t notice the sounds of each instrument – but you do when you’re high. In other words, you become able to notice differences in pitch, or pick out individual melodies or rhythms within a song.
Music is also typically part of the marijuana-smoking experience. Under the influence, many people start to feel an affinity for the composer or the performer (who was probably high while composing, performing, or recording the piece), and an ability to understand the more subtle messages and intentions in a piece. This is nothing new. People have been using mind-altering drugs in conjunction with rhythmic drumming for millennia!
In the end, music stirs the soul, and getting high helps you strip away the day’s worries that can make it difficult to really lose yourself in the music and let it do its soul-stirring magic on a profoundly deep level. Ultimately it doesn’t matter why the musical experience is better high, but it is. So put on some music, light up a bowl, and enjoy!
Trail Blazers is a series of portraits by photographer Maria Levitov, spotlighting cannabis consumers from all walks of life.
Plenty of Denver residents like to blame the city’s influx of newcomers and rising real estate prices over the past few years on legal cannabis. Even if that were true, though, we can’t overlook all of the culture and innovation that pot has lured to the Mile High. Musician Nicholas Caputo, for example, recently moved here from Gainesville, Florida, “to pursue art and engage with cannabis culture.” He also wanted to treat his depression with cannabis.
“As a musician and a person who has confronted the trials of living with manic depression, the creative and calming effects of cannabis have been essential in contributing to my quality of life,” he says.
“The recreational availability of cannabis is lovely, but the legal availability of medicine is what I hope to advocate for,” Caputo continues. “Far too many people across this country are targeted and imprisoned for their cannabis use, and for some, it is truly the difference between living a life with pain and mental unrest, or living freely. I hope to further break down the social stigmas [for] those who may benefit from this medicine but live in silence or fear.”
“Those people deserve access to the medicinal qualities of cannabis that alleviate the symptoms of mental illness and pain without the use of pharmaceuticals. May those who seek freedom from pain and suffering benefit from the plants available to us on this earth, and be free from the legal repercussions of living in places where freedom through its uses are stigmatized and targeted,” Caputo concludes.
MONDAY, April 30, 2018 — Music therapy might help ease the anxiety and agitation that plagues many Alzheimer’s patients, researchers suggest.
“People with dementia are confronted by a world that is unfamiliar to them, which causes disorientation and anxiety,” said study co-author Dr. Jeff Anderson, an associate professor of radiology at the University of Utah Health.
“We believe music will tap into the salience network of the brain that is still relatively functioning,” he added in a university news release.
The researchers described the salience network as the region of the brain responsible when your body feels, say, chills after listening to a moving piece of music. This region is generally spared by the memory loss associated with Alzheimer’s, they said.
Anderson and his colleagues conducted brain scans of 17 Alzheimer’s patients and found that music triggered communication between the salience network and a number of other brain networks.
“This is objective evidence from brain imaging that shows personally meaningful music is an alternative route for communicating with patients who have Alzheimer’s disease,” said senior study author Dr. Norman Foster, director of the Center for Alzheimer’s Care at the University of Utah.
“Language and visual memory pathways are damaged early as the disease progresses, but personalized music programs can activate the brain, especially for patients who are losing contact with their environment,” Foster noted.
Anderson added: “In our society, the diagnoses of dementia are snowballing and are taxing resources to the max. No one says playing music will be a cure for Alzheimer’s disease, but it might make the symptoms more manageable, decrease the cost of care and improve a patient’s quality of life.”
The study was published online in the April issue of The Journal of Prevention of Alzheimer’s Disease.
As we approach the prime outdoor gathering time of the year, the age-old transition from internet comment section debate to real-world human interaction becomes imminent and preparation is key. Without situation defusers to get you out of defending the concept of a “little uzi vert” to someone whose 10 favorite artists are all Wu-Tang Clan-affiliated, […] Marijuana
Emmy-winning studio Titmouse (Big Mouth, Metalocalypse, Niko and The Sword of Light) is ready to rock the VR music video world with Icarus 666, which is now available for free on Steam for the HTC Vive as well as on the Oculus Store for Oculus Rift.
This VR music video along with the recently launched Show It 2 Me were created with the open source Tilt Brush Toolkit, Google’s virtual reality app that lets you paint in 3D space with audio reactive and particle brushes.
“From demons to neon black holes and spaceships, anything you can create using Tilt Brush can be brought into Unity through the Toolkit,” says Chris Prynoski, president and owner of Titmouse. “More than just something that makes our eyes pop out of our heads, working in VR and with AR for the launch of the Snapchat World Lens Gravy Time has been crazy-bananas.”
Described as a heavy metal Space Mountain VR ride with a metal symphony driving your spaceship, the brightly-colored and intense Icarus 666 samples a track from Brendon Small’s new album, Galaktikcon II: Become the Storm. Brendon Small is the mastermind behind the metal band DETHKLOK and the DETHALBUMS. Dylan Carter directed “Icarus 666” and is an award-winning animator and director. “It was great working with my pals at Titmouse to put together this intergalactic roller coaster ride,” said Dethklok/Galaktikon mastermind Brendon Small. “It’s really fun bringing a VR experience to the world of METAL!!!”
SATURDAY, Nov. 11, 2017 — CPR can be performed by sixth graders, a new study suggests.
Some states require hands-only CPR training for high school graduation, but teaching younger children has not been a focus of training efforts, the researchers explained.
“We were wondering why they need to wait until 12th grade when sixth graders have learned the circulation system and seem mature enough and are interested in learning hands-only CPR,” said study author Dr. Mimi Biswas. She’s a cardiologist at the University of California’s Riverside School of Medicine and Riverside Community Hospital.
For the study, her team divided 160 sixth graders into three groups. All of the students were instructed in hands-only CPR.
One group (the control) watched a video that demonstrated how to perform 100 to 120 chest compressions a minute on adult CPR dummies.
Another group watched the video and listened to music with a tempo matching the target compression rate.
The third group watched the video and played a video game to reinforce the target compression rate.
All three groups then tested their CPR skills on dummies.
Most students remembered to call 911, performed CPR in the correct spot and gave high-quality compressions. But those in the music and video game groups more often matched the target compression rate.
The findings suggest that tempo-reinforcing methods such as music and video games may help children perform better CPR, according to the study authors.
They are slated to present the findings Monday at the American Heart Association’s annual meeting, in Anaheim, Calif. Research presented at medical meetings is typically considered preliminary, because it hasn’t received the scrutiny given to published studies.
This was a big week for all of the humans who happen to enjoy both marijuana and music (read: all of you). Whether it was marking the anniversary of one of the world’s most beloved bands picking up pot or one of this generation’s favorite new songwriters suffering a rare cannabis-related injury — kind of […] Marijuana
In hopes of generating a little extra cash as brick and mortar music sales continue to wilt, Berkeley’s Amoeba Music announced this week that they’ve received the city council’s blessing to convert their jazz section into Berkeley’s loudest medical marijuana dispensary. Pot Supplants Jazz In a move Louis “Stachmo” Armstrong would no doubt feel conflicted over, the self-described […] Marijuana
Pokemon GO fever has officially swept the nation, with people of all ages getting in on the action. In the past, gamers have been confined to the four walls of their parent’s basement, but thanks to this phenomena, gamers are now free to roam the streets while they collect Pokemon on their way to virtual […] Marijuana
“I don’t intend to ever stop smoking it, not as long as it grows. And there is no one on this earth that can ever stop it all from growing. No one but Jesus–and he wouldn’t dare. Because he feels the same way that I do about it.” – Louis Armstrong Marijuana and music have […] Marijuana
The times have changed. When acclaimed music executive Garnett March was launching the careers of Tupac, Snoop Dogg, Blackstreet, Master P, Westside Connection, Floetry, Mary J. Blige, Keyshia Cole, 50 Cent, and Kendrick Lamar, weed was almost always a part of the discussion. Back in those days, blunts, 40’s, and hip-hop represented the holy trinity […] Marijuana