If you’re like me, you don’t have a lot of emotional connection involved in fast-forwarding through a movie or TV show. There’s a disconnect between the random images shown out of context and without sound. Now, if you just set up a camera somewhere, record a street corner for an entire day, and play the video back at high speed with some ethereal music happening behind it, it transcends the minutiae shown. Watching 30 seconds of a team taking hours to set up a gigantic dominoes display makes you appreciate the final product that much more, because removing the boring bits out of watching a process is exactly what our attention-bouncing brains need.
Now please pretend I didn’t make a dominoes display analogous with the creation of our universe and species, and take a minute and 37 seconds to enjoy this haunting, humbling look back to the beginning. For Mother Russia!
Watching Lorena Garcia talk about cilantro does it no justice. This beautiful creation from melodysheep, a.k.a. John D. Boswell, musician and producer behind the Symphony of Science, is like a miniature Darren Aronofsky film. For me, space is always more poignant, so once humanity came into it, I felt a little more doomed. Still, from beginning to end, it’s a powerful compilation of images that makes me feel like a peon because I’m writing about it instead of experiencing it. The only telescope I’ve ever owned was broken when I got it. Sigh.
The Symphony of Science, which is definitely worth your time, is Boswell’s contribution toward making science, and the scientists at the forefront, more accessible to those otherwise uninterested. His approach is musical, matching spoken footage and images together with symphonic soundscapes. He first became prominent with his video for Carl Sagan’s “A Glorious Dawn,” and hasn’t stopped since.
On the opposite side of the “What is it all about?” spectrum, his last video combined moments of sage wisdom from comedic swamis Bill Hicks and George Carlin, autotuned DJ Steve Porter style.
Material of this kind never gets old to me. It’s probably the lifetime of cinema, but music always gives words more of an impact to me. And when words are replaced by galaxies forming, that feeling is multiplied infinitely.