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opening night of Crouching Tiger Hidden Dragon

Went to the opening night of Ang Lee‘s new film Crouching Tiger, Hidden Dragon. It was the first time in I can’t remember how long that I went to the opening night of a film and I have to say it was well worth it!
What a tremendous film! This film has completely supplanted all the other films I love as my favorite film. I can’t even begin to explain how wonderful it was to watch the beauty of China, of the actors, of the choreography, etc. It was everything I expected from a film by Ang Lee starring people like Chow Yun Fat and Michelle Yeoh, with fight choreography by Yuen Wo Ping, and Yo-Yo Ma playing cello.
The new female martial artist actor, Zhang Ziyi, is a complete revelation. I was stunned by her beauty and her movements. There were too many amazing fight sequences to pick out a favorite, but the sequence between Shu Lien (Yeoh) and Jen (Ziyi) was so inspiring. There was one image from that fight sequence shot from above as the two actresses were twirling like tops- it was like two disks of blurs spinning right next to each other with the odd fist and foot striking out from time to time.
Another scene I was mesmerized by was the fight in the restaurant when Jen totally kicks everyone’s ass all over the place. There was one part of that scene which was reminiscent of The Killer where the Chow Yun Fat character is walking through an apartment killing people with his twin pistols. The cinematography was similar enough that I was reminded of the similarity of the scenes.
I feel like I need to watch more old kung fu films in order to understand where this genre came from. I’ve seen Enter the Dragon but I hear that isn’t the pinnacle of the genre. I have to rent the older classics like Jackie Chan’s Legend of Drunken Master, Tai Chi Master with Yeoh and Bruce Lee’s Fists of Fury.
Also, the scenes from the Gobi Desert were incredible! I guess I knew how large China was but to see those expanses of wilderness was really inspiring. I hope to visit the Gobi one day myself.
One reason why I think this movie is going to be so impactful over time is that it goes in so many new directions with so many old themes and genres. While I really loved the action of the early 90’s HK cinema, the female perspective was close to nil.
Crouching Tiger celebrates the women in the film more than the men, imo, and to do that within the scope of this martial arts action adventure epic. The “3 generations of female martial arts actresses” (Ziyi, Yeoh, and Cheng Pei-Pei as “Jade Fox”) represented in “Tiger” are a testament to Lee’s having created a very new kind of martial arts movie- one where the women are more menacing and fierce than the men. The incredible restaurant scene is yet another facet of this new perspective.
A final thought about some of the reviews (most of which were very positive) was that more than one critic wished for a stronger portrayal of the love between Shu Lien and Li Mu Bai. I think that the fact that the love is unfulfilled is classically Asian in nature and fits the story well, especially when the love between Lo and Jen is consummated. Asking for a Western portrayal of the love between the main characters is to be ignorant of the strength of the culture in older Asian society.
Salon‘s review of the movie.


December Home Page

Welcome to my new site on WebLogs.Com.

  • My team when I worked at Toyota was featured in Fast Company magazine in Jan/Feb 2000. Here is the MSN reprint.
  • I also lurk on the decentralization mailing list on eGroups with a bunch of other people who’re working on building new net applications.
  • Here’s my review of Lazy Dog @ Shine when Ben Watt (of EBTG) and Jay Hannan brought their London club sound to New York in mid November. Amazing evening of great house music!
  • Here’s my review of 6th Element, a day rave on Randall’s island in the summer of 2000.
  • Here’s my review of dance music from October 14th, 2000.
  • Here’s my review of dance music from October 30th, 2000.
  • I’m a dance music junkie these days so I’m on many mailing lists including:
    Hybrid, Amtrak DJs, and also
    Way Out West.

  • Friends often ask where I get my music. In addition to local stores in New York City, I can confidently recommend GrooveDis and Dusty Groove who’re both online and have great selection and great service.
  • I also love to visit The Downbeat a site dedicated to downtempo music.
  • I still have a old home page on Earthlink, but I’m lazy and I haven’t updated it since 1998.
  • I also contribute occasionally to the Memepool weblog which is a daily source of “cultural oddities.”
  • My Photopoint page has a few photos that I’ve moved to the web.
  • I also have two photos on the site.
  • Here’s an article on alternative motorcycle front suspension systems that I did in college that got some attention online. It’s really dated now.
  • Here’s another copy that was stolen by some Japanese dude. I’ll email him to see why he didn’t ask for my permission.
  • This is a book review I did for a motorcycling book a long time ago.
  • This is a link to my 1995 trip report of my cross country motorcycle ride.

progressive house/trance vinyl for sale

I am NOT a working DJ so this vinyl is all in like-new condition. It has not been played “out” and has only been spun on my tables at home a few times. Prices do NOT include shipping. Paypal is easiest.
$7 – Ritmo “G 13” <evolution remix> (Fluid)
This track is on Lucien Foort’s “Singularity” mix and on Dave Seaman’s “Renaissance Awakening.”
$7 – Funk Function “Empress O/Odysseus” (Multitracks)
This track is on at least 3 GU comps: Nick Warren – Budapest, Sasha – San Francisco, Dave Seaman – Buenos Aires.
$6 – Dominica “Flashback/Neon” (Advance, ADX005)
$7 – Prism “aura/salvation” (Limbo, LIMB98T)
$7 – Natious “Amber” <silk mix/lightning mix> (Amato)
This track was on Sasha’s GU013 Global Underground – Ibiza mix CD.
$7 – Natious “Flashpoint Part 1/Christian West’s Feel Mix 1” (Amato)
$7 – Natious “Flashpoint Part 2/Christian West’s Feel Mix 2” (Amato)
“Flashpoint” was on the Gatecrasher “Disco-Tech” Mix.
$7 – Funkopath “Regenerate” <original/Deepsky Mix> (F-111)
$7 – Electro-Land “Cheyenne EP” <Christopher Lawrence Remix> (F-111)
$7 – Christopher Lawrence “Rush Hour/Ride the Light” (Hook)
This track was on Lawrence’s “Trilogy Part One: Empire” as well as mixes like “Logic Trance 3,” “Cyberfest 2000,” “Reactivate 16” and others.
$7 – Jondi & Spesh “The Sway” <Bio Mix/Thick Mix/Moriarty Mix> (Dorigen)
$6 – Grain “Does Jesus Have Buddha Nature?” (Fragrant Music)
1998 West coast trance label release.
$7 – BT “Fibbonaci Sequence” (White)
This was the big breakbeat track on Sasha’s “Global Underground-Ibiza” mix CD.
$20- Chicane “Behind the Sun” LP (Xtravaganza)
Chicane’s second LP with the Y2K anthem “Saltwater”
$6 – Hive “Ultrasonic Sound/Moves Within Time” (Phase 4 Records)
The vinyl only has the first 4 of the 7 tracks on the CD.
$7 – Bedrock “Voices Part 1” <Original Mix/DJ Remy Mix> (Pioneer)
Don’t take my word for it. This track is on S&D’s “Communicate,” on Gatecrasher “Global Sound System,” on Max Graham’s “Cream” and about 6 other compilations.
$7 – American Frontier Culture “Coming Home” <Noel W. Sanger Mix/Martin Villeneuve Mix> (StreetBeat)
$7 – Argonauts aka. Dave Ralph & Mike Koglin “Sommertag” (Kinetic)
“Sommertag” was on Trance: A State of Altered Consciousness.
$9 – Planet Perfecto Feat. Grace “Not Over Yet 99” <Matt Darey/Breeder/Perfecto/Da Sickboys> (Kinetic)
I don’t think this track needs any description. You either know it and like it or hate it. DOUBLE VINYL
$9 – Ascension “Someone” <Slacker/Keith Litman/Ascension mixes> (Kinetic)
This is that huge anthem from Oakenfold’s “Tranceport” album. DOUBLE VINYL
$7 – Paul Van Dyk “Another Way/Avenue” (Deviant, DVNT35X)
I don’t think this track needs any description.
$9 – Paul Van Dyk feat. St. Etienne “Tell Me Why (The Riddle)” (Mute)
I don’t think this track needs any description. DOUBLE VINYL
$7 – Delerium “Heaven’s Earth” <dub/club mix/radio edit> (Nettwerk)
$7 – Delerium “Heaven’s Earth” <Matt Darey/Key South Remix> (Nettwerk)
$6 – Povi “Dragonflies” <Uberzone remix> (Nettwerk)
$6 – M.A.D. Love “M.A.D. Love” (Caffeine)
DJ Micro and John Debo are M.A.D. Love, and anyone who’s into the Micro, Frankie Bones, Kimball Collins sound should like this track.


14 Oct 2000 – 12″ Reviews & news

Date: Sat, 14 Oct 2000 02:56:03 -0400
From: Gen Kanai
Subject: New & older vinyl from SF and NYC
So here’s what I’ve been into recently…mostly on the Latin breakbeat house tip.
Fwiw, the UK Garage sections at the record stores have gone from nonexistent to actually having their own little area in some of the stores. It’s still really hard to find UK Garage vinyl in the US though.
* * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * *
Newer purchases
Afro Elements “The ‘Chocolat’ EP” (Vinyl Cuts/Internal Bass Records
Vinyl Cuts has put out a lot of great 12″ this year, many with the steady hand of Mr. Gone in the mix. I think I have the “New Jazz Hustlers” 12″ somewhere on Vinyl Cuts. Basically great jazz funk without much in the way of intrusive vocals. Funky guitars, real instruments for the most part, and a tad slower BPMs than the standard house fare, not downtempo necessarily. Great stuff though…
Afro Medusa “Pasilda” (Vendetta Records, VENMX 287)
I’m not too familiar with Blanco y Negro as a label but I’m under the impression that I’ll like a lot of what they put out. This is pretty Latin house with good builds and some good instrumentation. With 3 different mixes, you should be able to find one to fit your set.
Day One “Waiting for a Break” (Melankolic)
My vote for 12″ that you probably slept on…Day One is an Virgin/Astralwerks/Melankolic artist that is kinda downtempo-rock-ish. There’s 2 Groove Armada remixes on here, but the groovy one is the “Big Tent Dub.” It definitely has that GA club remix feel, which I’m a fan of. It’s not that fast of a song, and not that intricate of a mix, but it keeps you moving and keeps a smile on your face. Put this one on and imagine yourself at Twilo on a Wednesday for a Groove Armada residency night….
Ian Pooley “900 Degrees” (V2 Music, 2000)
This is the official 12″ release of “900 Degrees” which was out on a white label promo a few months ago. This one has the original mix as well as the “1000 Degrees – And Rising” mix as well as the “Cool Down Mix.” Ian Pooley’s new album has so many strong Latin house singles on it- it’s really a fun album reminiscent of the summer. I wish they would put out “Balmes” on a 12″ and remix it…
Mandalay “Not Seventeen” (V2 Music)
I’m not familiar with the original artist’s sound. I have to admit I bought this 12″ for the Tom Middleton remixes, but depending on if you got the promo or the official 12″, you also get an Attica Blues remix as well as a Futureshock remix. I love the Tom Middleton “Cosmos” remix- it’s got some unobtrusive filtered female vocals (Kirsty Hankshaw?) and rolls along gently with the house beat behind it.
MJ Cole “Sincere” (Talkin Loud/Mercury)
This track is another one that EVERYONE loves, but I stalled on it originally because I had bought the first 12″ and when this second one came out with the Jazzanova and Naked Music remixes, I didn’t realize that the second one was much better than the first! ‘Nuff said- it’s on turntables everywhere and it’s great- especially if you love Jazzanova and Miguel Migs like I do.
Negrocan “Cada Vez” Remixes (Pimento Music)
This is a 12″ with NEW remixes by Avant Garde and CJ Love. Production is by the guy who did the original production, Grant Nelson. Vocals by Lilliana Chachin, of course. If you liked the original single, and many, many people did, then you might like these remixes too.
New Phunk Theory “twilight/little green dub” (Forensic, FOR-010)
Driving yet groovy, both sides of this 12″ are pretty minimal but with enough melodic flourishes to keep my interest. Definitely nightclub music. I feel like I own some other 12″ from these guys but their website is down.
Muki “I Don’t Want To Know” (Mantra)
I have to admit I was brought in by the promise of the Mr. Scruff remix- in the trip-hop vein. There’s two other mixes that are more house oriented that I like too. I know I’ve heard this famous song before with the refrain “I don’t want to know about evil, only want to know ’bout love” but I can’t figure out if it’s a remix or a sample or what.
* * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * *
Older releases:
(I’m still catching up with my house music collection in that I’m buying older stuff that working DJs already probably own.)
Afro Celt Sound System “Release” (Realworld/Virgin)
This one is the 12″ that has the remixes by MAW and Rollo of Faithless. The MAW remixes caught my ear- classic MAW beats backed against the unforgettable Irish vocals of Iarla O’Lionard. I think there might be a Kenny Dope remix as well. Anyone know?
Isolee “Beau mot plage” (Classic Music, licensed from Playhouse/Ongako)
The Latin house remix of “Beau mot plage” is the “Freeform Reform Parts I & II” version. The original track is pretty tech-y and there’s a Jeff Mills-ish remix on the original 12″ that isn’t my cup of tea. Definitely look for the “Freeford Reform remix” and you’ll be set 🙂
Masters at Work “Brazilian Beat” (Mr. Bongo, MRB 12005)
This is on one of the popular Mr. Bongo compilations, Brazilian Beats I think, but with remixes by Kenny Dope and MAW. Again, Lilliana Chachain provides the vocals- I wonder how prolific this woman is?
Mr. Hermano “Vasco Da Gama” (Disorient/Mr. Bongo, Sushi 18)
I own the Kevin Yost remixes of “Corcovada” by Mr. Hermano on Disorient and that’s been a popular record, so I naturally grooved to this newer release. Disorient calls themselves a “breakbeat house” label and I think that’s pretty descriptive of the sound that I like. This would be Latin break house- but however you classify it, it’s a fun sound and is sure to get bodies movin’!
Negrocan “Cada Vez” (Kontor, 2000)
This is the ubiquitous Latin house track that so many people have loved this year all over the dance music world. It really is a great track that gets everyone dancing. I picked this one up at Clear Music in SF where I think they had 30 copies (!) of it left. So if you’re visiting SF, do yourself a favor and save yourself an afternoon to go crate diggin’ at Clear- their selection was great!
A Man Called Adam “Duende Dubs #2” (Other Records, 1999) Mixes by Tom Middleton
I buy anything by Tom Middleton basically on the spot. His mix album on Mixmag “A Jedi’s Night Out” was a complete revelation for me and since then I’ve been a big fan. This is an older release of remixes of _The Calling_ “Stay With Me” and “Music So Clear.” Both are fun clubby tracks but “Stay With Me” is definitely the one I’ll spin out. I know I have this track somewhere else in my collection on CD.
web info on Tom Middleton and Global Communication
Caron Banez’s review from last year…
Gabriel Rene with Nicole Weisberg “Don’t You Cry” (OM Records)
I already own this on 12″ but it’s one of my favorites and I wanted a second copy to mix with in the event that I want to do a longer mix. It’s one of those songs that I’m so in love with that I’m worried about playing it to death.
It’s cool buying anything from OM when you’re in San Francisco. The cashier at Amoeba said to me, “Oh, you’re picking up Gabe’s record?” as if everyone in SF knew of it and how good it is.
Yukihiro Fukitomi “Brasilia 2000 EP” (Nite Grooves)
Fukitomi, like this label Nite Grooves, is kind of hit-or-miss with me. This is jazzy, Brazilian instrumentals over a driving house beat. Some great guitar and keyboard work for sure- not the most stand out tracks though. But I don’t necessarily like everything that Fukitomi does nor everything on NG. Watch out for duds on this label.
Other stuff:
Clubbed to Death #2 (Mowax MW037R)
I had to pick this up because I only have the single on CD. For those who don’t know this famous piece of electronic music, it was one of the pivotal songs in The Matrix soundtrack and one of the most famous releases on MoWax. This is the second piece of what I guess is the 2 disc 12″ release. This has the “Kurayamino Variation” as well as remixes by Peshay, Carl Craig and the “Totally Waxed Remix.” I’m not sure if this was new or not (I doubt it) but I bought it as new and am happy 🙂
That’s all for now folks!


More links on the net

Here’s an article on alternative motorcycle front suspension systems that I did in college that got some attention online. It’s really dated now.
Here’s another copy that was stolen by some Japanese dude. I’ll email him to see why he didn’t ask for my permission.
This is a book review I did for a motorcycling book a long time ago.
This is a link to my 1995 trip report of my cross country motorcycle ride.
My team when I worked at Toyota was featured in Fast Company magazine in the Jan/Feb 2000 issue.
Here’s the text of the Fast Company article on my team and our work.
Here it is reprinted in MSN.