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Unearthed Review: Kareelag Vista. Zero stars.

By johnboy 29 August 2011 28

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Unearthed Review continues its inexorable progress through the Canberra musicians on the TripleJ Unearthed website.

By popular request the Eagle’s Nest denizens are shooting me in the head with nerf guns demanding I turn off Kareelah Vista.

He has this to say about himself:

Kareelah Vista is the electronic music production work of Sebastian Ryan. After dj’ing for a couple of years, playing music for countless and while continuing studies in Digital Arts, Kareelah Vista stands as the product of all the influences Sebastian has had; from DJ’s, live performance and new media arts. With all of these influences, Kareelah Vista aims to produce performance and installation pieces that combine electronic music with digital video art.

Opinion is hugely divided up here about what we think of Kareelah Vista’s tracks. Some think it is awful, others that it’s the worst thing they’ve ever heard.

There’s a heavy use of sounds which have a similar effect to nails drawn over a blackboard.

Another problem is a lack of dynamism within the tracks, 10 seconds listen generally suffices to know what the next three minutes will bring.

I’d have liked to have listened longer to get a better idea for possible hidden depth. But my colleagues had moved beyond threatening violence, if I continued to play it, to actually perpetrating violence to make it stop.

No stars.

(We note he’s got some fans of his live performance which we pass no judgment of)


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28 Responses to
Unearthed Review: Kareelag Vista. Zero stars.
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milkman 7:36 am 11 Sep 11

Snoman said :

Secondly I want to say I’m hugely dissappointed in the comments above, I joined riotACT very recently believing it to be an actively balanced and current local community website.

Interesting, yes. Balanced, uh, no…

Roadrage77 11:48 pm 10 Sep 11

I made it to 0:47 before I started looking around the room for a sharp object. But then again, maybe I just don’t *get* art.

Snoman 6:15 pm 10 Sep 11

Not sure what you mean by throwing my toys JB, everything I said has been in specific reference to the severely sub-par lines of your review. I’ve never heard that analogy before, actually.

Yes, if the reviewer’s opinion of the music is negative, then the review should reflect that. It should also consist predominantly of an actual critique of the music and not a narrative on the reactions of JB’s colleagues.

Thanks to p1, CK and even Thumper somewhat for using actual adjectives in your opinions, and for having even a few constructive words that Seb can use. This can actually make a review FUNCTIONAL.

Androyd 12:51 pm 07 Sep 11

And what’s more Phoebe and Snoman, the review has made other people listen to it (who probably wouldn’t have) and make up their own minds – so not a bad outcome…

Clown Killer 12:44 pm 07 Sep 11

Well there’s 15 minutes of my life that I will never get back. To be honest I don’t think it rates as aural torture, but it is predictable, cliched and well … just a little dull really. Maybe its context driven. Who knows? Who cares?

p1 12:29 pm 07 Sep 11

OK, I just listened to the three songs tracks on the unearthed website. To be honest it wasn’t as bad as I though after reading JB or Thumper’s opinions.

That is not to say I think it was good either. Definitely had some issues with repetitiveness. Had some sounds in there which made me wonder if my headphones were on the blink. Generally though I rate is as not too offensive background noise. That said, I didn’t play it out loud, so I have no way to judge the potentially violent reactions my cow-orkers might have exhibited had I done so.

In the general scheme of things, I’d call it somewhere about half way between Led Zepplin and Justin Bieber.

Androyd 12:24 pm 07 Sep 11

Hey Phoebe and Snoman –
1 Johnboy and Riotact have been reviewing and promoting Canberra music of all genres for over ten years, so whinging about their ability to review or their lack of support for local talent frankly says more about you than about them.
2 Yep, bad reviews hurt. Ask musicians, movie stars etc. But dummy spits don’t get you far in the credibility stakes.
3 Any performer will learn pretty quickly that everyone has an opinion, some people will like you, some won’t. I remember going in band comps and the result was usually that two judges liked us and two judges said we sucked. If Sebastian is half an artist he will either shrug this off, or he might even learn from it. Or at least get a thicker skin to help him pursue his Vision.

Diggety 12:24 pm 07 Sep 11

Snoman said :

…the riotACT community is just a narrow-minded, more conservative crowd than I first thought.

And there lies your problem, Snoman.

You seem to think that making crap music, then labelling anyone who does not like it “narrow-minded, more conservative crowd” excuses the poor quality of the work.

That attitude will always leave you disappointed and depressed 🙁

Jim Jones 11:47 am 07 Sep 11

How not to respond to an unfavourable review:

1) Attack the reviewer
2) State that the artist is so good that ‘the masses’ won’t understand his art (bonus points for tying this into personal attacks upon the reviewer
3) Talk about how popular the artist is (bonus points for ignoring the fact that this completely undermines point 2)

Pretty sure all the boxes have been ticked here.

Thumper 11:44 am 07 Sep 11

Okay, that was a mistake.

Mind numbingly boring and unoriginal with seemingly random noises appearing out of the ether. Lacks an essential element in timing and dynamics and has an overreliance on repetition of clichéd phrases. At times it reminds me of being on a train going through an extremely long tunnel in that you just don’t know when it will end. And what is it with that excruciating 1980s organ/ synth sound?

Now I will attempt to get through song number two on the list.

No, sorry, I just can’t. That dinky organ at the start has rendered my ears totally inoperable.

This is not music for the feint hearted, it is music to lie down and die to. I now understand why there exists so much depression in the youth of today.

I fully concur with John’s work mates.

However, if EM is your thing then so be it, enjoy.

Jethro 11:43 am 07 Sep 11

Snoman said :

hey first of all I have to say I apologize sincerely to Sebastian if he’s read this, I was the one who suggested riotACT site reviews his unearthed and I guess I should’ve checked that johnboy (and his denizens?!) wasn’t such a joke of a reviewer.

Secondly I want to say I’m hugely dissappointed in the comments above, I joined riotACT very recently believing it to be an actively balanced and current local community website, in this case either you’re blindly rallying behind a regular author despite the fact that this is a disgracefully slimy and dismissive excuse for a review or the riotACT community is just a narrow-minded, more conservative crowd than I first thought.

Either way I’d just like to say I think Sebastian is a rare breed, he constantly pushes the envelope of electronica and is braver with his compositions than many, far more well-known artists in the genre. If you like the music Delorean, James Holden, M83 or Crystal Castles than you should definitely check this artist out.

And yeah johnboy, there’s only 3 tracks on the Unearthed page listen to the whole thing before zeroing an emerging local artist, 0/5 for credibility.

No.I’m a big fan of electronica, but it just sounds crap and annoying. Being experimental doesn’t mean being good.

Once I went to a live show where the band played nothing but a jews harp and a coffee tin. They thought they were so cutting edge and awesome, but really they were just crap.

Thoroughly Smashed 11:25 am 07 Sep 11

Snowman, if a music critic doesn’t like a piece of music he or she has listened to, how do you propose he or she writes a rating for it, if not negatively?

Ever read a film review by Roger Ebert?

Thumper 11:20 am 07 Sep 11

Right, I have to listen to it now.

johnboy 11:06 am 07 Sep 11

No, I listened to it all.

I just wasn’t able to give it a repeat listen because of the unpleasant effect it had on listeners.

But feel free to give your opinions about the music (try and limit yourself to what’s on unearthed which everyone can listen to) rather than just throwing your toys out of the pram about the review.

Snoman 11:02 am 07 Sep 11

also an implication that you didn’t even listen to the entirety of his unearthed content before condemning it to a zero, an accurate and truthful reflection of the credibility of your reviews JB

johnboy 10:34 am 07 Sep 11

an accurate and truthful reflection of the impact of the music.

Snoman 10:26 am 07 Sep 11

I was alluding to this in your review:

“I’d have liked to have listened longer to get a better idea for possible hidden depth. But my colleagues had moved beyond threatening violence, if I continued to play it, to actually perpetrating violence to make it stop.”

johnboy 10:21 am 07 Sep 11

This process has always been a review solely of the material presented on unearthed.

Snoman 10:19 am 07 Sep 11

hey first of all I have to say I apologize sincerely to Sebastian if he’s read this, I was the one who suggested riotACT site reviews his unearthed and I guess I should’ve checked that johnboy (and his denizens?!) wasn’t such a joke of a reviewer.

Secondly I want to say I’m hugely dissappointed in the comments above, I joined riotACT very recently believing it to be an actively balanced and current local community website, in this case either you’re blindly rallying behind a regular author despite the fact that this is a disgracefully slimy and dismissive excuse for a review or the riotACT community is just a narrow-minded, more conservative crowd than I first thought.

Either way I’d just like to say I think Sebastian is a rare breed, he constantly pushes the envelope of electronica and is braver with his compositions than many, far more well-known artists in the genre. If you like the music Delorean, James Holden, M83 or Crystal Castles than you should definitely check this artist out.

And yeah johnboy, there’s only 3 tracks on the Unearthed page listen to the whole thing before zeroing an emerging local artist, 0/5 for credibility.

Jethro 9:48 pm 31 Aug 11

I believe they looped this music at 105dB at Guantanamo Bay

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