Ghost in the Machine
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How ‘Ghost in the Machine’ Became the Police’s Smartest, Trickiest LP
Back in the day, it wasn't all that rare for a top-selling band to make music that was both clever and accessible. But even by those long-ago and occasionally commonplace standards, the Police still managed to stand out as a pop group that was always one step ahead of its peers.
Name-dropping Lolita author Vladimir Nabokov in a Top 10 hit and playing songs that switched from polyrhythmic world music to virtuosic jazz fills to jagged New Wave and then back again will do that. It also got them labeled as both visionaries and pretentious art rockers by fans and critics alike.
With 1981's Ghost in the Machine , their fourth album, they pushed it all to new levels.
The previous year's Zenyatta Mondatta made them stars, with the album reaching No. 5 (their first Top 10) and two of its singles – "De Do Do Do, De Da Da Da" and "Don't Stand So Close to Me" – also cracking the Top 10 for the first time. When they started work on Ghost in the Machine in January 1981, the Police were ready to take their music to yet another place. They even started over, in a sense, by recording in new studios with a new producer.
With the leap in sales and chart position came more control, and the band took the opportunity to delve deeper into subjects and themes not typically found in pop music. The album's title – the band's first in English – was based on Arthur Koestler's The Ghost in the Machine , a 1967 philosophy book about the mind-body relationship ... not exactly squeeze-my-lemon stuff.
Singer, bassist and main songwriter Sting incorporated many of the book's philosophical and psychological theories (as well as some vaguely religious ones) into his new songs, including the opening "Spirits in the Material World," a three-minute musical summation of Koestler's work. But he also included several standbys, like love songs ("Every Little Thing She Does Is Magic") and political numbers ("Invisible Sun").
But mostly they're about information overload and the crowding of modern lives (and this was before anyone even realized they'd be spending most of their time online and staring at screens someday), and the personal perspectives they were now allowed to pursue thanks to more creative freedom.
Watch the Police's 'Every Little Thing She Does Is Magic' Video
Musically, the Police grew too, incorporating synthesizers, horns and piano into the songs – Sting even plays saxophone – giving them more definition and a larger sense of scale compared to the earlier records, especially the first two, where the trio sounds bounded by whatever instruments they happen to be holding.
On Ghost in the Machine , the songs got bigger and more dynamic, a crucial element in the band's development. By the time they made their next album, 1983's Synchronicity , they sounded like the arena band they had become: tighter, more expansive, constricted by expectations and occasionally soulless.
Weeks after its release on Oct. 2, 1981, Ghost in the Machine shot up the chart and stopped at No. 2. The singles were hits too, starting with "Every Little Thing She Does Is Magic" (which made it to No. 3), followed by "Spirits in the Material World" (No. 11) and "Secret Journey" (which just missed the Top 40). The Police got even bigger with Synchronicity – their only No. 1 album, which yielded their only No. 1 single, "Every Breath You Take."
But the infighting and struggle for control that eventually tore the band apart after that record had already seeped in. Ghost in the Machine , darker than any of the group's previous records, was the beginning and the end. It was the last time everyone in the band sorta got along with one another; it was also their smartest and trickiest work. It was better than everything that came before it, but it was leaner than what came after.
All these years later, it's easy to see that it's more than just the Police's transitional album. It's their masterpiece.
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The Police’s fourth album investigates an electronic sound while adopting their most explicitly political stance yet. “Spirits In the Material World”’s revolution-rock bobs to a reggae rhythm driven by keyboards rather than guitars, while “Invisible Sun” examines The Troubles in Northern Ireland against an eerie, electro swirl. They’ve not banished love songs though, and with a chorus that bursts out of the synth mist like a thunderclap, “Everything Little Thing She Does Is Magic” is one of their finest.
October 2, 1981 11 Songs, 41 minutes ℗ 2016 A&M Records
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Story of the Ghost: Celebrating 40 Years of a Classic Police Album
1981’s Ghost in the Machine underscores the trio’s fast ascent to superstar success
The Police were well established as bonafide hitmakers by the time their fourth album, Ghost in the Machine , appeared in October, 1981.
Prior to its release, they had already accumulated several songs that had become well entrenched within the top 40, both at home in the U.K. and here in the U.S. Indeed, songs such as “Roxanne,” “Message in a Bottle,” and “Don’t Stand So Close to Me” had made them bankable commodities, and their challenge, if anything at that point, was to simply sustain the momentum.
The tact worked well. Propelled by another string of successful singles — “Every Little Thing She Does Is Magic,” “Invisible Sun” and “Spirits in the Material World” — Ghost in the Machine quickly soared to the top of the charts, debuting at number one in Britain and reaching number two on the Billboard Top 200. That success not only sustained their presence and prominence on MTV, but also ensured their status as top box office draws as a touring act.
VIDEO: The Police “Every Little Thing She Does Is Magic”
Their efforts succeeded at least in part due to the fact that for once, the band was allowed to proceed at their own pace. There had been immense pressure to deliver their previous effort, Zenyatta Mondatta , within a confined time limit in order to keep the music coming. But now, with a new album in their sights, they allowed themselves six weeks of rehearsal and recording while encamped at Sir George Martin’s AIR Studios on the Caribbean Island of Montserrat.
Finally able to create some distance between themselves and their record label, it enabled the trio not only to relax, but to experiment with their sound in ways that hadn’t been practical before. Synthesizers, horns and keyboards played a prominent role in the recording process, transforming the group’s reggae flourish to a more progressive stance. With producer Hugh Padgham now at the helm — assuming the same role he had for earlier recordings by Phil Collins and Peter Gabriel — Sting, Summers and Copeland were able to create a new sonic experience while still maintaining their credible commercial appeal.
Named for Arthur Koestler’s 1967 treatise on the relationship between philosophy and psychology — a favorite book of Sting’s during his teenage years — Ghost in the Machine was not without its difficulties. Sting asserted himself in ways he had never done before, often rewriting lyrics originally penned by his bandmates and insisting imbuing tones and textures that muted the original intents. Guitarist Andy Summers was particularly vocal after the record was released, complaining that the additional instrumentation mooted the rawer representation of their music, a sound that had been a key element in their music early on. So too, the choice of the song that was originally designated to be the album’s first single, “Omegaman,” was vetoed by Sting, much to Summer’s further consternation.
VIDEO: The Police “Spirits in the Material World”
In retrospect, Summer’s complaints became a moot point. Opening track “Spirits in the Material World” retains the group’s trademark reggae-influenced rhythms.The jubilant and infectious “Every Little Thing She Does Is Magic” shares a tropical vibe, and while it does contain a keyboard flourish, the infectious approach remains the same. “Demolition Man” is solidly assured, a rocker that finds the band decidedly determined and solidly straight forward. ”Invisible Sun” ranked as one of the group’s most adventurous outings to date, showing that the Police weren’t willing to simply to fall back on any patented approach.
VIDEO: The Police “Invisible Sun”
Notably, the video accompanying “Invisible Sun” was banned by the BBC, due to the fact that it referenced the conflict in Northern Ireland.
So too, several tracks — ”Omegaman”, “Secret Journey” and “Darkness,” add a foreboding feel to the album overall.
There would be further successes to come, especially when it came to their follow-up, Synchronicity and the massive hits it spawned (“Every Breath You Take, “King of Pain,” “Wrapped Around Your Finger” et. al.). However, it would be the band’s last studio set, as it culminated in their break-up in 1986. It was a good run, and Ghost in the Machine can be credited with helping to underscore those efforts.
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Lee Zimmerman is a writer and columnist based in beautiful Maryville, Tennessee. Over the past 20 years, his work has appeared in dozens of leading music publications. He is also the author of Americana Music: Voice, Visionaries, and Pioneers of an Honest Sound , which will be published by Texas A&M University Press early next year.
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Ghost In The Machine
By Debra Rae Cohen
Debra Rae Cohen
Esperanto, like the League of Nations, was one of those good ideas that just didn’t work. Intended as an international language not native to anyone but foreign to no one — an answer to divisiveness dating back to the Tower of Babel — it failed because its design gave a sop to every culture while capturing the passion of none. The same is often true of pop music that attempts to meld the resources of various countries. Native idioms, when taken out of context, can lose their indigenous spark or be reproduced so painstakingly that they become ridiculous in a pop context. The bridge that many groups try to build to the Third World sometimes uses condescension for its supports.
By their second and best LP, Reggatta de Blanc, however, the Police had managed to devise a musical Esperanto that succeeded. Bathed in the watercolor wash of guitarist Andy Summers’ chording, the band’s rhythms and inflections merged into a homogenized yet utterly distinctive sound that didn’t revere its components as much as recontextualize them, creating new passion in fresh places. The group’s approach was relentlessly, calculatedly middlebrow: never identify, never overexplain, flatter your audience into thinking they appreciate cross-rhythms when what’s really hooking them is some of the snappiest songwriting since Jerry Leiber and Mike Stoller. Buttressed by the band’s earnestly liberal message, this approach clicked. Zenyatta Mondatta, the third Police album, made the Top Ten. In a strange way, its sound was so familiar as to be formulaic: Sting ‘s high, lilting singing, Summers’ shivery harmonics and, most of all, the music’s spare, sculptural quality — the way each number had a core of space in which rhythms changed and grew and echoed.
Ghost in the Machine downplays most of these elements — or, rather, augments them. Chords don’t reverberate in a shaft of silence but find response in overdubs. Sting’s thin vocals have harmonizing partners. The multitrack singing eliminates the attractive tinge of aloneness that’s always been integral to the subtext of Police compositions, while the extra instrumentation — keyboards, guitar parts, Sting’s overdubbed one-man horn section — fills up the open spaces in their music. Ghost in the Machine feels unsettlingly crowded.
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Which is as it should be, since that’s what the album is about: overload, media explosion, the global village, the behavioral sink. The Police’s platform, a spinoff from Marshall McLuhan, Alvin Toffler, et al., is hardly news (sure, Ghost in the Machine is a smart, track-it-down title, but author Arthur Koestler hasn’t been in vogue for quite a while), yet it’s strongly stated, consistent and compelling. The thrashing, denatured funk of “Too Much Information,” the whirlpool riff that punctuates “Omegaman” and the oppressive, hymnlike aspects of “Invisible Sun” all bespeak claustrophobia and frustration, and the lyrics bear them out. The Police skillfully manipulate musical details to underscore their points. Sting brays “infor ma tion” as if to demonstrate how words, when repeated often enough, can disassemble into meaninglessness. In “Rehumanize Yourself”, the singsong circus-calliope mood of the music works as a taunt to the raw seriousness of the lyrics: “Billy joined the National Front/He always was a little runt/Got his hand in the air with the other cunts….”
They’re still not the Clash — neither the National Front nor the situation in Belfast (broodingly addressed in “Invisible Sun”) is an especially risky target — but the Police display more commitment, more real anger, on Ghost in the Machine than ever before. It’s as if their roles as self-anointed pop ambassadors have shown them the difficulty of healing gestures. For example, the heart-rending joyous-ness with which “Every Little Thing She Does Is Magic” bursts from the grooves proves its discontinuity with all of the other songs. It’s a moment of liberation, of tossed-off shackles, whereas the rest of the record (even, to some extent, the obsessive “Hungry for You”) emphasizes constraints — if not those imposed by society, then those accepted as responsibility, like the toll that talent exacts in Stewart Copeland’s “Darkness” or the promise to continue to seek knowledge in “Secret Journey.”
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Even “One World (Not Three),” a sort of reggae march that’s the closest the LP comes to an anthem, is a kind of trial: by attacking the concept of such categorizations as the Third World, the tune turns inward to interrogate the Police themselves, implicitly questioning the attitudes involved in their rock-around-the-world crusades. Not so incidentally, the number is also a virtuosic instrumental display, particularly by Copeland, whose drumming captures both reggae nuances and rock & roll dynamics. On Ghost in the Machine, not even genius exempts you from tough questions.
The Police’s smarts have always been greatest when they didn’t show — in making unorthodox career decisions or disguising the subtlety of their songwriting as simplicity. Now that the group has been rewarded with success, it’s time to change, to challenge old assumptions. Having seen the world, these guys are starting to look more closely at themselves.
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The Police – Ghost In The Machine (CD, Album, Club Edition, Reissue, US)
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The Police : Ghost in the Machine
I’m usually one of the first people in the room to malign Sting’s solo work. His first few albums were alright, but then he sunk into the morass of adult contemporary M.O.R. in which a lot of aging rock stars find themselves. While that holds true, I am also one of the first in the room to laud his original band, The Police , in my opinion one of the best rock trios on the face of the earth. The Police’s combination of jazz, reggae and rock made for some of the best songs of the ’80s and certainly some of the most iconic. There’s “Roxanne,” for instance, and its inclusion in the Eddie Murphy film 48 Hours , and “Don’t Stand So Close to Me,” the song that led a bunch of pop fans to Lolita . But the darker, more political Ghost in the Machine would be one more higher step leading toward their biggest album ever, Synchronicity , the 29th biggest selling album of the decade. It would also be a huge leap forward in song style and maturity, the penultimate album before the Police would exit the scene on top of the world.
The album begins with three of the best songs the group has ever recorded, starting with the political “Spirits in the Material World.” The song was written over 25 years ago and is still relevant today.
“ Our so called leaders speak With words they try to jail you They subjugate the meek But it’s the rhetoric of failure. “
Sound familiar American citizens? The same holds true for the third song, “Invisible Sun,” written about the troubles in Northern Ireland. The droning keyboard sounds in the song make everything just a little bit dark to fit the mood. But just when you thought everything was hopeless, there’s the second song, “Every Little Thing She Does Is Magic,” my favorite Police song ever. Sting is at his falsetto best, Stewart Copeland at his reggae steel drum best, and Andy Summers, relegated to more of a background part, is still the consummate professional. In high school, as I was forever unlucky in love, and pining for some girl I could never have, this song became my security blanket, as it proved to me, in some way, that even Sting shared my pain. Lyrics in this song are some of his best, including the oft-repeated “ It’s a big enough umbrella, but it’s always me that ends up getting wet. ” Sting would dip into the “Magic” well a few times in his solo career as an added coda to particular songs.
But those three gems aren’t all that make up the wonder of Ghost in the Machine . There’s also the ‘for French speakers only’ “Hungry for You,” the covered-by-Grace Jones “Demolition Man,” the fast moving duo of “Too Much Information” and “Rehumanize Yourself,” and the reggae inspired “One World (Not Three).” Andy Summers would also add the creepy “Omega Man” while Copeland would contribute the ballad, “Darkness.”
Ghost in the Machine might have been one of those albums that got more wear out of side A than side B in its vinyl incarnation, but the darkness and political messages throughout made it a perfect example of Reagan / Thatcher-age blues, depression and paranoia. Of course, we seem to be living in a similar if not worse age today, making Ghost in the Machine ripe for a revisit.
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Ghost In the Machine by The Police
Album Reviews 1981 Albums , 2011 Reviews , Album Reviews by Ric Albano , British Artists , Sting , The Police 3
Buy Ghost In the Machine
For the first time since the band’s formation four years earlier, a dominant influence was starting to emerge from lead vocalist and bass player Sting , who lobbied for the addition of synths, layered horns, saxophones, and lyrics heavily influenced by philosophical theory. This new direction caused a riff with the other band members, especially drummer and original founding member Stewart Copeland, and proved to be the beginning of the end for this short-live and talented band. As it turned out, the more mainstream (and well-earned) popularity the Police achieved, the further they grew apart, disbanding after the break through of Synchronicity and the headlining world tour that followed.
The album opens with “Spirits in the Material World”, which sets the tone for this collection with a steady synth riff against, a syncopated drum beat, and philosophical lyrics –
“There is no political solution / to our troubled evolution / have no faith in constitution / there is no bloody revolution…”
Originally written by Sting in 1976, “Every Little Thing She Does is Magic” is the most upbeat song on the record although the lyrics suggest it’s about a guy with a crush on a girl and he is trying to get up the nerve to talk to her. It nicely fluctuates between a calm, piano arpeggio during the verse and a classic, steel drum-fueled reggae during the chorus. The song reached #1 on the mainstream rock charts, making it the biggest pop hit on the album.
What do you do if your lyrics are too hot for the English speaking world? Set them against the backdrop of a ska beat and sing them in French of course. “Hungry For You” has probably confused many non francophone listeners who may think they just can’t understand the words (because they’re in French).
The band returns to philosophical rambling with “Rehumanize Yourself”. The beginning of this song sounds like it may have influenced The Bangles hit “Walk Like and Egyptian” with Horns drifting and soaring above the racing beat.
“I work all day at the factory/I’m building a machine that’s not for me/There must be a reason that I can’t see/You’ve got to humanize yourself…”
The feel of Ghost in the Machine is clearly a departure from the previous Police projects. Guitarist Andy summers probably had the least amount of influence on this album, simply due to the pure displacement by the presence of all the other instrumentation. That’s not to say that this isn’t a good listen, as the band was well on their way to their creative apex.
Part of Classic Rock Review’s celebration of 1981 albums .
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The Police - Ghost in the Machine « RVJ PREMIUM June 24, 2014 @ 7:36 am
[…] Classic Rock ReviewGuitarist Andy summers probably had the least amount of influence on this album, simply due to the pure displacement by the presence of all the other instrumentation. That’s not to say that this isn’t a good listen, as the band was well on their way to their creative apex. […]
Ghost In The Machine was also recorded at AIR Studios in Montserrat.
This album had a big impact on me as a musician. As young drummer who was heavily into (and influenced) by John Bonham, Neil Peart, Billy Cobham and Ian Paice, a suggestion by my drum teacher to check out Stewart Copeland for his incorporation of reggae, ska and Latin playing styles into pop/rock music led me to this album that I still listen to regularly. The songs that didn’t recieve regular airplay on the radio are the ones that really shine on this album. I believe it is the best record in their catalogue.
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The highly significant release for Police fans features three additional tracks that were not included on the original album.
Ghost In The Machine , the chart-topping, multi-platinum fourth studio album by The Police , is to be reissued on November 4 in a striking, limited edition picture disc version, featuring the alternate, “original” tracklisting and sequencing. It can be pre-ordered now.
This highly significant new release for Police fans features three additional tracks that were not included on the original album: “I Burn For You” (the single mix of the track from the Brimstone and Treacle album), “Once Upon A Daydream,” and “Shambelle.” In the visually appealing new release, the side A design of the disc features the logo image from the front sleeve, while side B features the inner sleeve image.
Additional studio detail
In another feature that adds to the unique appeal of the new edition, and evokes the world-famous trio’s studio aesthetic, four songs feature drummer Stewart Copeland’s count-ins, as distinctive audio from the recording sessions that was not included on the 1981 release. These are on the third single from the LP, “Spirits In The Material World,” as well as “Rehumanize Yourself,” “One World (Not Three),” and “Hungry For You.”
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The album was recorded at AIR Studios in Montserrat and Le Studio, Quebec as the follow-up to The Police’s 1980 bestseller Zenyatta Mondatta . Like its predecessor (and indeed 1979’s Regatta de Blanc ), Ghost In The Machine went straight to No.1 in the UK, spending three weeks there in a total of 27 weeks on the chart. It reached No.2 in the US, where it was certified triple platinum, and was platinum in Canada and New Zealand and gold in several other countries.
Expanding on the band’s jazz influences while retaining their unfailing ear for unique pop and rock creativity, it featured the lead-off single “Invisible Sun,” released just ahead of the album in September 1981. That was followed by the indelible “Every Little Thing She Does Is Magic,” which hit No.1 in the UK and many other territories. Other album highlights included “Demolition Man,” which attracted an interpretation by Grace Jones , as well as the frenetic, jazzy “Re-Humanize Yourself” and the more reflective “Secret Journey” and “Darkness.”
Pre-order the Ghost In The Machine picture disc edition.
The full tracklist is:
Side A Invisible Sun Demolition Man Secret Journey Darkness Spirits In The Material World Too Much Information Omegaman
Side B One World (Not Three) RehumanizeYourself I Burn For You Hungry For You (j’aurais toujours faim de toi) Every Little Thing She Does Is Magic Once Upon A Daydream Shambelle
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THE POLICE SHAKE UP TRACKLISTING ON NEW ‘GHOST IN THE MACHINE’ REISSUE
Coming from the Police on November 4th is a new limited-edition, 40th anniversary picture disc of their fourth album, 1982's Ghost In The Machine . The new set features an alternate take on the classic album's original tracklist and sequencing.
The new vinyl version features three additional tracks not included on the original album — "I Burn For You" featuring the single mix of the track from the Brimstone And Treacle soundtrack and the B-sides "Once Upon A Daydream" and "Shambelle."
According to the press release :
To add to the unique nature of this release, and reflecting the personality of the band, four songs — "Spirits In The Material World," "Rehumanize Yourself," "One World (Not Three)," and "Hungry For You" feature Stewart Copeland counting in the tracks — distinctive audio from the recording studio that was not included on the 1981 release.
Guitarist Andy Summers felt that the band's musicality, coupled with a sixth sense when creating new sounds, was the secret weapon of the Police: ["Being in that setting, y'know, I come from a lot of different places harmonically — as had Sting. We were, y'know, we were a bit more than, like, three-chord folk musicians. Y'know, we we're pretty sophisticated with what we knew. But, again, we were in a rock context and so, y'know, whatever we were doing, we were going to make it rock."] SOUNDCUE (:18 OC: . . . make it rock)
The trackisting to the 2022 40th anniversary Ghost In The Machine reissue is :
"Invisible Sun" "Demolition Man" "Secret Journey" "Darkness" "Spirits In The Material World" "Too Much Information" "Omegaman"
"One World (Not Three)" "RehumanizeYourself" "I Burn For You" "Hungry For You (j’aurais toujours faim de toi)" "Every Little Thing She Does Is Magic" "Once Upon A Daydream" "Shambelle"
Alice Cooper's Vintage Vault!
Bones' The Ghost In The Machine Perspective Flip Required All Hands On Deck
Posted: January 20, 2024 | Last updated: January 20, 2024
It may be funnier and more spiritual than "NCIS," but "Bones" is a police procedural at the end of the day — and procedural television implies a formula. With "Bones," that formula centered around a team of investigators led by forensic antropologist Dr. Temperance "Bones" Brennan (Emily Deschanel) and FBI agent Seeley Booth (David Boreanaz), who solve murder cases by finding clues in human remains. That said, the show was willing to experiment within the confines of this procedure — when a show runs for 12 seasons, it has to. For the 200th episode, "The 200th in the 10th," "Bones" threw its characters into a 1950s-set homage to Alfred Hitchcock films .
The show broke the formula even earlier for its 150th episode (season 8, episode 9) — "The Ghost in the Machine." In this episode, the team finds the skeleton of teenage boy Colin Gibson (Cameron DeFaria), which has been decomposing for two years, and solves his murder. Wait, this sounds like a pretty typical "Bones" episode, doesn't it? The experimentation isn't narrative, but formal: the episode is seen entirely from the "perspective" of Colin's skull.
"The Ghost in the Machine" opens with the characters in the middle of discovering the body, and from there, it's set mostly at the Jeffersonian Institute itself, since that's where Colin's skull rests. "Bones" always splits the difference between the fieldwork and labwork of forensics, but this episode tilts much more towards the latter.
Series creator Hart Hanson (who personally scripted the episode) opened up to The Hollywood Reporter about his self-imposed difficulties writing the episode.
Read more: These Are The 35 Most Disturbing Movies Of The Century So Far
The View From Inside The Bones
"The Ghost in the Machine" was directed by Milan Cheylov (one of 10 "Bones" episodes he helmed), who had to craft a distinct visual language. The episode is filmed almost entirely via POV shots from the perspective of Colin's skull, with characters often speaking directly to the skull. To mimic a human's point-of-view, the framing is imprecise and the camera sometimes shakes (presumably it was handheld). What is smooth are the pans; the camera moves on a 360-degree axis, changing view quickly like a wandering eye.
The episode does not unfold in real-time (there would be too much downtime to fit into 40 minutes). So, instead of simple cuts, transitions are done via plumes of ethereal smoke, which smog up the frame and then disappear to reveal the new location. Hanson admitted to THR that the concept wasn't easy to execute: "[Executive producer Stephen Nathan] had a hard time cutting it, and [Cheylov and his crew] had a tough time shooting it. I painted myself into quite a stylistic corner. Everybody had to help me out."
As a sign that Hanson ultimately needed to escape that corner to resolve the episode, his script only stays confined to the lab for the first two-thirds of the episode. In the last 15 minutes, Bones brings the skull home, convinced Colin's "presence" will motivate her to see the case through. Then, when they've got the suspects pinned, we see the questioning and confession thanks to the skull being in the room as an interrogation tactic.
Ghost In The Bones
Sounds like a lot of contrivances for some camera tricks, huh? Well, the episode's script centers Colin's humanity, and implicitly that of all the other murder victims who have kicked off each "Bones" episode. The shadow hanging over the episode is whether Colin's soul is buried within his mortal remains. In private moments, the characters speak directly to the skull because they're all wondering that themselves.
The episode chooses to definitely answer this question with a "yes." After the murder is solved, Colin's soul leaves his skull, with an upwards zoom-out shot following its journey outwards towards the ceiling. Colin's apparition, standing behind the characters, becomes visible to the audience, and guest-starring psychic Avalon (Cyndi Lauper) even waves goodbye to Colin's spirit once he moves on. The episode's themes are consistent with the series' — Bones' science-only views on life and her work are consistently challenged — but this was a bit too sentimental.
From here on out, the episode goes back to conventional camerawork; the only establishing shots and transitions of the episode come in the concluding minutes. It's imperfect, but "The Ghost in the Machine" is a clever spin on how procedurals can experiment simply by centering a different perspective.
Read the original article on /Film .
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- Ghost in the Machine
- Phoebe Bridgers
The Meaning Behind SZA and Phoebe Bridgers’ Grammy-Nominated “Ghost in the Machine”
by Thomas Galindo November 18, 2023, 6:00 am
For the upcoming 2024 Grammy Awards , SZA leads all artists with the most nominations at nine. One of these is for the Best Pop Duo-Group Performance, where her song “Ghost in the Machine,” featuring boygenius star Phoebe Bridgers, is a nominee.
Videos by American Songwriter
“Ghost in the Machine,” No. 12 on the track list of SZA’s Grammy-nominated, December 2022 album, SOS, serves as the first-ever collaboration between SZA and Bridgers.
“That record is insane. She just hit me up. She just sent me a DM, and then it all happened so fast,” Bridgers said about the creation of the song in an interview with NME last December. “I wasn’t really used to that in that pop world, because vinyl isn’t so much of a consideration until way later. It’s just like, ‘Do you want to be on this record? OK, it’s out next week.’ It was so recent, which I really like. I like that turnaround time. Personally, I sit on stuff for so long and it takes me years to make albums. I like seeing someone else’s world from that angle.”
[RELATED: The Meaning Behind SZA’s Grammy-Nominated “Snooze”]
Along with this quick “turnaround time,” the nature of Bridgers’ contribution to the song sees her bring a piece of her artistry onto the track, rather than assimilating her sound into SZA’s R&B approach. For most of the track, SZA smoothly croons about the disheartening taste in the music industry. As she notices the growing influence of artificial intelligence on the pop landscape, evident in the Robot got future, I don’t lyric, she looks to her lover to distract her from her worrisome reality.
Can you distract me from all the disaster? Can you touch on me and not call me after? Can you hate on me and mask it with laughter? Can you lead me to the ark? What’s the password?
Then, when Bridgers comes in for the song’s third verse, the once mellow and blissful production transitions to a solemn piano, where Bridgers sings her relationship issues as if they were a church hymn.
You said all of my friends are on my payroll You’re not wrong, you’re an asshole Screaming at you in the Ludlow I was yours for free I don’t get existential I just think about myself and look where that got me Standin’ on my own in an airport bar or hotel lobby Waiting to feel clean That’s so fucking boring
As it turns out, this contrast was according to plan. SZA explained to Alternative Press how she always knew she wanted to have another artist featured on the song, and wanted it to be “someone with a conversational approach to their music.”
“I didn’t think that [Bridgers] would come to the studio, let alone actually get on the song, so I was shocked,” she said. “She was so fucking nice, and we had the best time — she’s hilarious. […] She downplayed it even when she was done. She was like, ‘Yeah, I don’t know. ’ I was like, ‘This is incredible. You’re insane.’ But she’s just great.”
Photo by Dave Kotinsky/Getty Images for The Webby Awards
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A Look Back at the Stellar ‘Hunger Games’ Soundtrack–Plus, Our Favorite Songs
© 2024 American Songwriter
Aliens among us? Vegas UFO report latest in UAP sightings investigated worldwide
The only thing certain about UFO sightings is that they will continue to be reported.
In the early morning of May 1, Las Vegas police officers investigated reports of two unknown entities falling from the sky after a family reported something 'not human' in their backyard. One of the family members told an officer they saw “a big creature” that was “long, 10 feet tall,” according to body camera footage obtained by USA TODAY.
The officer told the family that their descriptions matched the observations another officer saw in the sky eight minutes prior.
The Office of the Director of National Intelligence revealed on Jan 12, the U.S. government has received over 510 reports of "unidentified aerial phenomena" between late 2004 and mid-2022, with hundreds of have been reported since 2021 alone.
The report did not mention the possibility of extraterrestrial life but said the sightings "continue to occur in restricted or sensitive airspace, highlighting possible concerns for safety of flight or adversary collection activity."
Here are some of the latest reported UAP sightings.
May Sighting: Las Vegas police investigate aliens-in-backyard report after officer spots flying object
UAP sighting over Mexico soccer field
A photo of a supposed UAP hovering above the Estadio Olympico Benito Juárez soccer stadium in Ciudad Juárez Mexico, excited researchers, including famous ufologist Jamie Maussan who described it as “a ship of nonhuman origin.”
The photo showed a dark flying saucer-looking object close to a bright setting sun behind the stadium on Jan. 14 at the Bravos game against the Tijuana Xolos.
FC Juárez’s Twitter account tagged Maussan in a tweet days after he expressed interest and said that the photo had been computer enhanced and analyzed.
"I share that the case was analyzed with AI equipment, and everything indicates that we are facing an unidentified anomalous phenomenon 'UAP', (Kyiv) scientists call these ships 'Ghost' for being dark objects," Maussan wrote on Twitter. "Given all of the above, I think it is a SHIP of nonhuman origin."
Maussan has spent over three decades investigating UFO sightings, including through his Mexican TV show "Tercer Milenio" (Third Millenium).
UAP sightings in Ukraine are presumed to be war technology
Ukrainian astronomers have reported dozens of UAPs flying over Kyiv. Many presume the sightings are military aircraft or drones, as Russia and Ukraine are at war.
Kyiv’s Main Astronomical Observatory published a research paper in late 2022 in coordination with the country’s National Academy of Science that focuses on a specific type of UAP called “phantoms,” which is an “object [that] is a completely black body that does not emit and absorbs all the radiation falling on it.”
The paper titled “Unidentified aerial phenomena I Observations” shows that the UAP’s they observed in Ukraine are too fast to photograph.
“We see them everywhere. We observe a significant number of objects whose nature is not clear,” the research said. “Flights of single, group and squadrons of the ships were detected, moving at speeds from 3 to 15 degrees per second.”
Three leaked US Navy UFO videos that the Pentagon declassified
In April 2020, the Pentagon released three unclassified videos of UAPs to clear misconceptions about whether they were real.
The first video was taken in November 2004 and showed small flying objects. The clip was leaked in 2007 and was discovered by the U.S. Navy two years later.
Two other videos were recorded in January 2015, according to the Department of Defense. In a statement, the Defense Department said the Navy "previously acknowledged" the videos were Navy videos.
"After a thorough review, the department has determined that the authorized release of these unclassified videos does not reveal any sensitive capabilities or systems, and does not impinge on any subsequent investigations of military air space incursions by unidentified aerial phenomena," the Department of Defense said in a statement Monday.
The videos were labeled "FLIR1," "Gimbal" and "GoFast," and were initially published by The New York Times and To The Stars Academy of Arts and Science.