Patrick Holbrook :: <Back |Main| Next>

Deep Pop Songs
Videos, soda pop, pump, vinyl tubing, and bucket. 2006.
A\V Space, Rochester, NY

Excerpt from 2 minute looped video

Click for excerpt from The Smiths interviews

Deep Pop Songs is a video installation made specifically for Rochester, which investigates cultural memory, intervention in consumer space, and music.

One of the two videos culls footage from slapping soda bottles in supermarkets, creating a marimba-like sound composition. The other video is a short documentary about fans of The Smiths. Soda pop is pumped through tubes that emulate a deep lake water cooling system.

Taking a personal association from my naive early teenage rebellion stage, Deep Pop Songs thinks about the construction of alternative culture as well as the site-specificity of Rochester in a play of language: deep water/soda pop/songs. The Smiths, while horribly narcissistic, were an important part of finding a way to resist mainstream values while I was growing up, when I also started drinking soda pop, which was taboo in my household. The Smiths were about discovering that there are alternatives, and having to invent your own way. Finding out as I walked down the supermarket aisle that slapping soda pop bottles makes interesting music may be a similar discovery. By using a commodity beyond its original intention, it proposes the possibility for a model of the everyday resistance of capitalist culture, becoming a producer of our own meanings instead of being relegated to the position of a consumer, where corporate power dictates and narrows our realities.

When researching Rochester, I was pleased to see that it is where Jolt Cola is produced, my early teenage drink of choice. I also became fascinated with deep lake water cooling, which cities on the great lakes may employ as an alternative to air conditioning. The soda pop pumping is another metaphor for having to go beneath the surface to find alternatives that speak to you.

The interviewees in the Smiths video include Adam Davis, Cooper Van Rossum, Javier Francisco, Jared Wilson, Richard A. Lou, Myke Johns and Melissa Cranford.