David Bryant (Godspeed You! Black Emperor)

David Bryant (Godspeed You! Black Emperor)

In Quiet Zone, David Bryant and Karl Lemieux take us deep into the world of those who suffer from electromagnetic hypersensitivity. These “wave refugees” settled in West Virginia around the Green Bank observatory, in an area known as the National Radio Quiet Zone. Combining elements of documentary, film essay and experimental film, Quiet Zone defies genres, weaving together an unusual story in which sound and image distort reality to make the distress and suffering of these people palpable.


Through the use of complex imagery and sound, mind-blowing cinematic moments are born – moments of grace during which viewers witness electromagnetic waves take shape in the environment, travel through walls and invade spaces with their powerful vibrations. Known for their work in the musical group Godspeed You! Black Emperor, David Bryant and Karl Lemieux produced a striking piece of sensory genius.


To mark the film's launch on NFB.ca, musician, recordist and sound designer David Bryant shared with us some of his favourite NFB films, along with personal notes explaining his picks. Discover them below.

David Bryant

Musician, recordist and sound designer David Bryant is known for his role in the bands Godspeed You! Black Emperor, Hiss Tracts and Set Fire to Flames. In 2004, he built The Pines Recording Studio, where he has produced the music and sound design for Madame Tutli-Putli (Chris Lavis and Maciek Szczerbowski, 2007) and Passage (Karl Lemieux, 2007). Quiet Zone is his directorial debut.

  • Very Nice, Very Nice
    1961|7 min

    Arthur Lipsett.. watch them all... Lipsett has played a huge part in the way i see and hear things.....i don't really have a favourite Lipsett film..... Very Nice, Very Nice and 21-87 have probably stayed with me more than the others, but there is something about each film that i love.....

  • 21-87
    1964|9 min

    Arthur Lipsett somehow distills these tiny fragments of truth....both harsh and beautiful......and like a great magician, i have no idea how he does it......Lipsett has gotten some attention in the last few years....but more people need to see his films.......he also doesn't get enough credit for his ear....the gathering/editing/manipulation of sound in his films is staggering....i often listen to his films, rather than watch them.....i wish i had all his unused reels of audio collage to sift through.....i hope that in one of the many clearances that happen when recording formats change, they weren't thrown in a dumpster.....

  • Free Fall
    1964|9 min

    Free Fall is an interesting departure....with him actively behind the camera, gathering images.....Lipsett has this heartbreaking ability to make the invisible, visible.....this devastating alchemy.....the speed-up/slow-down of time.....the collision of sound/image.....the precision in his editing......all serve to to cut through the numbing and the noise of being alive...of being in the world of people.....

  • Remembering Arthur
    2006|1 h 29 min

    Remembering Arthur by Martin Lavut is also a great documentary about Lipsett's work/life from the perspective of people who were closest to him...

  • Men for Sale
    2009|2 h 24 min

    ...heartbreaking and beautiful...perfect really....with an understated soundtrack by Tim Hecker...

  • Who's Counting? Marilyn Waring on Sex, Lies and Global Economics
    1995|1 h 34 min

    ...a little bit of light to ward off the darkness...amazing documentary...

  • Paddle to the Sea
    1966|28 min

    ...i saw this film in a primary school gymnasium in the early seventies...i had just moved to Canada from Scotland...it was the first time i had seen an actual reel of film projected onto a screen...i remember the slow meditation of the film...and the flickering light...

  • Ladies and Gentlemen... Mr. Leonard Cohen
    1965|44 min

    ...great document of Leonard Cohen as a younger man...as a poet...Montreal is the real star in this film though...fragmented ghost transmissions from a city that no longer exists...