Friday, January 29, 2010
French director Kounen tackles a subject which should interest most everyone to some degree - be it shamanism or hallucinogens. Kounen's travels along the Amazon lead him to a tribe with century-long experiences of sacred plants and a "parallel universe" reached through the use of said herbs. Documenting the rituals of the tribe, his own encounters with the plants and the opinions of various experts from around the globe, the director seems to aim to unravel some of the myths of shamanism and everything related to it. He succeeds, but not completely. A part of the problem is that one cannot (at least Kounen isn't able to) begin to describe an alternate universe by producing surreal images on the silver screen or claiming things such as Kounen hadn't understood that he never left childhood prior to participating in the shaman's sessions.
Download the entire film here...
Wednesday, January 27, 2010
"Kid—what are you doing over there with the niggers and the apes? Why don't you straighten out and act like a white man? After all, they're only human cattle, you know that yourself. I hate to see a bright young man fuck up and get off on the wrong track — sure it happens to all of us one time or another. Why the man who went on to invent Shitola was sitting right where you're sitting now twenty-five years ago when I was saying the same thing to him — Well, he straightened out same as you're going to straighten out. You can't deny your blood kid — You're white, white, white — And you can't walk out on life times change there's just no place to go."
Towers Open Fire is a Balch/Burroughs experimental film written by William S. Burroughs and filmed by Antony Balch. It was released in 1963 and the cast features Antony Balch, William S. Burroughs, BBC presenter David Jacobs, British sex film producer Bachoo Sen and Scottish writer Alexander Trocchi.
Parts of the text read by Burroughs such as the Shitola excerpt is from The Soft Machine.
Monday, January 25, 2010
Zizek!, sometimes written as Žižek!, is a 2005 American/Canadian documentary film directed by Astra Taylor. Its subject is philosopher and psychoanalyst Slavoj Žižek, a prolific author and former candidate for the Presidency of Slovenia in that country's first democratic elections following the 1990 dissolution of Yugoslavia.
Documentary which looks at how a radical generation of musicians created a new German musical identity out of the cultural ruins of war. Between 1968 and 1977 bands like Neu!, Can, Faust and Kraftwerk would look beyond western rock and roll to create some of the most original and uncompromising music ever heard. They shared one common goal - a forward-looking desire to transcend Germany's gruesome past - but that didn't stop the music press in war-obsessed Britain from calling them Krautrock.
Monday, January 18, 2010
Thursday, January 14, 2010
"Potato" is the third episode of the BBC sitcom Blackadder II, the second series of Blackadder, which was set in Elizabethan England from 1558 to 1603.
The episode opens with Blackadder at home, preparing to go to court to celebrate the return of Sir Walter "Oooh what a big ship I've got" Raleigh (Simon Jones). Blackadder is typically sarcastic and embittered, refusing to join in the festivities and endures much taunting from children, to which he retaliates by shooting one with an arrow.
Melchett arrives and offers Blackadder a potato, the last having just been discovered by Raleigh on his voyages; Melchett plans to smoke his. Blackadder declines, scoffing that people will be "eating them next." At the court, Raleigh's tales of discovery greatly impress the Queen. Blackadder attempts to upstage him by declaring his intention to circumnavigate the Cape of Good Hope, a journey Raleigh believes is impossible, stating that sailors do not count it as part of the "Seven Seas" owing to its treacherousness. Unbeknownst to the Royal Court, Blackadder's bold declaration is a bluff, and he intends to merely sail to France and enjoy a holiday, before returning to England with tales of great bravery. Blackadder enquires of Raleigh which seaman would be insane enough to Captain such a voyage, and is told where to find Captain Redbeard Rum. ("Usually up the Old Sea Dog.")
Tuesday, January 12, 2010
Monday, January 11, 2010
You know, one of the intense pleasures of travel and one of the delights of ethnographic research is the opportunity to live amongst those who have not forgotten the old ways, who still feel their past in the wind, touch it in stones polished by rain, taste it in the bitter leaves of plants. Just to know that Jaguar shamans still journey beyond the Milky Way, or the myths of the Inuit elders still resonate with meaning, or that in the Himalaya, the Buddhists still pursue the breath of the Dharma, is to really remember the central revelation of anthropology, and that is the idea that the world in which we live in does not exist in some absolute sense, but is just one model of reality, the consequence of one particular set of adaptive choices that our lineage made, albeit successfully, many generations ago. Wade Davis
Two-part, in-depth conversation with Genesis Breyer P-Orridge on the occasion of the publication of Thee Psychick Bible, a compendium of Gen's writing on magick.
Wednesday, January 06, 2010
Saturday, January 02, 2010
As a child the Dr. Suess story The Lorax was compulsory reading in my family. Tree huggers each and every one of em. Including me. I brought The Lorax for my own kids. This afternoon I spent 5 hours watching the entire series of Whale Wars:
Things have changed somewhat in the 30+ years since I read The Lorax, with how environmental causes are dealt with in the mainstream media. However, I don't think the situation has changed so much when it comes to destruction of habitat and use of resources. Whenever we are able to, we as a species continue to hack our way to total consumption of everything we can get our greedy little hands on. Because 'everyone needs a thneed'.....
Friday, January 01, 2010
Birthday Party on Gotterdamerung - Junkyard
I have posted this video here before but this new year's day I am listening to the music of Roland S. Howard, which has been part of my life these past twenty years. RIP.
Birthday Party: Deep in the Woods
Former Birthday Party guitarist Roland S. Howard passed away early Wednesday morning after losing his battle with liver cancer. The 50-year-old had been waiting for a crucial liver transplant and had been forced to cancel recent shows due to his illness.
Howard first came to prominence as guitarist with Melbourne punk band the Boys Next Door who then mutated into the Birthday Party. Led by singer Nick Cave, the Birthday Party left their native Australia for the U.K. in 1980 where the band established their fearsome reputation thanks to a series of incendiary gigs that often saw as much violence on stage as off.
Howard's idiosyncratic guitar playing -- an incredible collision of blues, feedback and six-string brutality -- marked him down as a true original and proved to be a huge influence on subsequent generations of guitarists.
After the Birthday Party's split in 1983, Howard lent his guitar skills to Crime and the City Solution and These Immortal Souls. He appeared onstage in London with Nick Cave and the Bad Seeds in 1991 for a partial Birthday Party reunion when the band played 'Wild World', 'Dead Joe' and 'Nick the Stripper.'