Thursday, July 18, 2013
"For full effect, hook VCR to stereo and view in total darkness."
Memory Screen was the first video from the Alien Workshop and was released in 1991. At this point it is probably a little redundant to sing its praises as I've said I think it's one of the best things ever made by mankind, but whatever. I'll keep it short. The video showcased new pros Rob Dyrdek and Duane Pitre, along with veterans Neil Blender and Steve Claar. The ams were Scott Conklin, Thomas Morgan, John Pryor, and Bo Turner. Conklin, Morgan, and Turner would all turn pro for the Workshop in the next year or two.
Working off ideas that began with G&S's Footage video, Chris Carter and Mike Hill created something otherworldly that moved beyond just a basic skateboard video. In between the tricks, were clips of life in Ohio, random stock footage, weird montages, Chrome Ball animations, and video feedback. The soundtrack featured Dinosaur Jr., a J. Mascis solo tune in "A Little Ethnic Song", Don't Mean Maybe, Eddie Boy, and the Painteens. There were also several bands that Neil Blender was involved with, such as Worked World and Toxic Death Sentence.
I feel Memory Screen is a valuable documentation of a variety of underground scenes that were happening in the early 1990s. You have the skateboarding obviously coupled with the music and art, both visual and video. It registers as a motion picture version of a 'zine that focused on all of those things.
"Saw the Royals on the screen today."
Note: Rather than tease you with two years worth of video coming soon ads, Alien ran multiple ads for Memory Screen in a row once it was released. These are two that I liked the best.
Top: Transworld - September 1991 Volume 9 Number 9
Bottom: Transworld - December 1991 Volume 9 Number 12