4-8.12.2024 / Białystok

The Festival opening ceremony: Forest Swords (UK) plays live score for the film „The Fall of the House of Usher”

The Festival opening ceremony: Forest Swords (UK) plays live score for the film „The Fall of the House of Usher”

Opening ŻUBROFFKA with a spectacular mix of film and music has become our festival’s tradition. This year, the legendary British producer Forest Swords will play live to the poetic horror by Jean Epstein and Luis Buñuel entitled “The Fall of the House of Usher”!

The Brit, famous for his modern sound, who combines in his art a love both for musical antiquity and its future, will face a picture that is regarded as a key work of avant-garde film impressionism. The oneiric atmosphere of the film inspired by the novella by Edgar Allan Poe will be enhanced not only by the unique rhythm of the edit or the trick photography, deforming the shapes and dimensions of reality, but also the live music generated by the artist.

December 5th, 2018, 8:30 PM
Forum Cinema, 5 Legionowa Street
tickets: 30 PLN – available at the Forum cinema’s box office and online: bilety.bok.bialystok.pl

Forest Swords
The British producer, Matthew Barnes, known as Forest Swords, creates a unique mixture of frayed hip-hop, R&B beats, looped guitars and samples. His suggestive, emotional music reflects the majestic landscape of the landscape of the Wirral peninsula (where he lives): the river, coast and forests, as well as all the memorable melodies originating from the enviable pop heritage of the nearby Liverpool. Forest Swords has taken part in several important projects, e.g. a music and dance performance entitled “Shrine”, the soundtrack to the “Assassin’s Creed” game, or collaboration with the legendary Massive Attack! His debut EP, “Dagger Paths” was hailed as “album of the year” by “FACT Magazine”. The “Compassion” album, released by Barnes is 2017, confirmed his position as one of the most important producers of contemporary electronic music.

The album harkens back to the debut, “Engravings”, and deals with the topic of the instable modern world. It transforms its history into a unique palette of ambiguous sounds. Banes seeks an equilibrium between ecstasy and frustration, as well as the sense of elapsing time, the source of a string of emotions. “Since I started work on the new album, I tried to glimpse even the smallest light in the tunnel. I realized that there exists a peculiar type of power in the creation of something of your own. I am inspired by the new paths of interpersonal communication and language-based communication in the context of the future.” The album’s music is a search for harmony among extreme emotions and phenomena. The album draws the listener in with its consistency, only to suddenly throw them off guard, break down and then recombine into a coherent whole. Through purposeful and skilful juggling of digital and analogue techniques, the artist does not allow himself to define clearly what is new, what is old, what is artificial, what is natural.

„The Fall of the House of Usher”
(France/USA 1928, 63’)
dir. Jean Epstein
script: Jean Epstein and Luis Buñuel

A poetic horror film, the genre’s most outstanding achievement in cinema history! The story begins when Allan, the protagonist, arrives at his friend’s, Roderick Usher, castle, where he learns about the residents’ strange illnesses. Mr Usher is apathetic, while his wife has been stricken with a mysterious unknown ailment, which makes her weaker with each passing day. Soon it turns out that the progress of beautiful Madeleine disease depends in an unfathomable way on the painting her husband is creating. Each brushstroke diminishes her vitality. A doctor friend and Allan are eyewitnesses of a drama that lacks a logical explanation.

The film, apart from being an attempt to tackle Edgar Allan Poe’s masterful poetics, was the summary of the director’s experiments with editing of a poetic image. Owing to the technical treatments (slowed down, imposed and trick photography), the film has the inimitable character of a screen poem. Epstein summarizes here his own explorations in the field of the expressive means of avant-garde impressionism.