The Extraordinary Ordinary Life Of José González Begins Festival Circuit

posted August 25, 2010

Swedish musician José González is the subject of a new documentary called The Extraordinary Ordinary Life of José González, which is now starting to be shown at festivals throughout Europe. It is a beautiful, sly and radically intimate documentary about the life and mind of musician José González. The 74-minute film was directed by Mikel Cee Karisson and Fredrik Egerstrand and produced by Erik Hemmendorff for Plattform Produktion (Karisson has made videos for González as well as Fever Ray, among others). Using video diary, surveillance camera, concert footage, tour documentation and animation, directors Karlsson and Egerstrand have given form to something as elusive as the creative process of one of Sweden's finest - and most secretive - musicians.

In the film we follow González through scenes shot during work on his second album, "In Our Nature." Through a diary, based on personal voice recordings, we follow his everyday reflections from thoughts on a photon's path from the sun to our eyes to Darwinism to the struggle to write songs. Exploring universal themes such as loneliness, boredom and isolation, The Extraordinary Ordinary Life of José González gives us insight into one person's attempt to manage and understand his own existence. It was shot over a three-year period on location in Sweden, Japan, Singapore, United States, South Africa, England, Chile and Argentina.

Director Karisson says: "There is something absurd, fascinating and beautiful in our attempts to find meaning in our existence. With The Extraordinary ordinary life of José González, we wanted to give form to the personal artistic process. How personal reflection and everyday fragments of life shapes our input and output."

One of the more enigmatic and thought-provoking musicians of the last decade, González is one of Sweden's most successful exports. He has sold almost one million records worldwide and has received accolades from the media in every country in which he has performed. On September 14, he will release "Fields," the debut record from his band Junip. Formed in the late '90s by González along with drummer Elias Araya and organ and moog player Tobias Winterkorn, the early critical response to Junip has been glowing thus far. Pitchfork gave the "Rope & Summit" EP an 8.0 rating, saying that the music favors "simplicity and shade while retaining the uncluttered sonic arranging that so often serves as a trademark of González's...we won't have to wait long to hear more from Junip, and if it holds serve from Rope, the only disappointment will be that González could've been holding out on us for too long."

Junip will be touring in America beginning November 1, 2010.

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