Wednesday, November 30, 2011
Child molestation and pedophiles just keep coming up. First there was the scandal over at Penn State, now there's the one at Syracuse. It's everywhere. It's in the national news and in it's in the local news here in Vegas. I never got the whole kiddie porn thing. I mean, I like women with large breasts. I'm not gay, but I'd have thought, you know, they'd be drawn to a big dick, right? I don't get it In my room over at the Bunkhouse I overheard this guy yelling over the phone "I'm not your lawyer! Shut the fuck up you pervert! You pervert with your 12-year-old girls" and the last thing the man said was "I have no son." Over and over again, "I'm not your lawyer, pervert". Good God, I'm glad I didn't find out more about that. Then that fat guy at the Denny's on Boulder Highway, he was telling me that from being a social worker, he'd learned to hate shrinks. I asked to give me an example. "Well, I work with retarded people. And one of the retarded people I worked with was this retarded pedophile named Pete." "Was he victim of sexual abuse?" "No. Not that I know of, at least. Pete is retarded to the point of being mentally about twelve years old. He'd gotten in trouble for touching little girls. I think he just likes sex. He likes to be in control and he can manipulate little children. Anyway, Pete's big thing was that he said he wanted a scooter. and the shrink would ask 'how does that make you feel?' feel and all that. The shrink was buying it all. Pete was making it like he wanted the scooter to get out and meet people in the community. I told the shrink 'I think Pete wants the scooter so he can touch children.' and the shrink goes into how Pete hasn't touched anyone in years and this and that. Well, I went to my superiors and they told me to listen to what the shrink says and write a grant to get Pete the scooter. I said 'he wants a scooter so he can molest little girls'. They told me to write the grant anyway. And the grant to get Pete a scooter went through. Oh, guess what happened? Pete used the scooter go molest a little girl again." I suppose that would be one reason to be mistrustful of shrinks. Well, back at the Bunkhouse bar, Cowboy James was smoking and having some Jack telling me a whole a bunch of stories about working as a security guard, and pedophiles comes up again. "You know Gables down the street? They just busted a child prostitution ring and there and the cops who did it was saying that the oldest girl they pulled out of there was thirteen years old." "Mexicans" the bartender asked Cowboy James. "Blacks. " Cowboy James answered " My friend Ray did the arrest. Now he's a father of girls about that age,so he really had a hard time with it. You see that's why I could never be a cop. If I was making that arrest I think my gun might just accidentally go off." Cowboy James chuckled and sipped his Jack. I laughed. Cowboy James is alright. He's a little bit of a braggart sometimes, but he's alright.
Sunday, November 27, 2011
This film appears on many worst movies of all times type lists. It's a fairly preposterous film. In that I'm trapped in this situation in which only horror film reviews and metal reviews I write get many hits, I'd choose this one as being noteworthy. This is primarily for the very curious costume that was used for the villain. This consisted of a gorilla suit, except for the head, which appears to be a diving helmet. The film was originally in 3-D and released in the early 50's. The basic idea of the film is that this one family is left surviving on planet Earth after Ro-Man, the gorilla with a diving mask, has killed them all off with a death ray, because the scientist father has developed an antidote serum. For some reason the machines Ro-man uses to communicate spits bubbles. Ro-man is left to kill off the remaining humans. He's about to kill the eldest daughter in the family, but he develops feelings for her illogically. His superior kills him, and then it ends with little Johnny waking up after having hit his head. It has a big "it was all a dream…or was it?" kind of ending. Human Centipede 2 also has that kind of an ending unfortunately, but it was all so beautifully offensive that I forgive Tom Six. Robot Monster has a lot of footage of the man in the gorilla suit and diving mask walking through some empty desert, probably outside of Los Angeles. It's kind of hot when Ro-Man ties up the eldest daughter. I got a good chuckle at the costume but this is film is only at all remarkable for the very odd costume that was used. It's not unlike other 50's science fiction flicks. That costume though has become semi-iconic an image of b-films. Does Ro-man represent the machine? The atom bomb?The communist threat? The Freudian punishing father? Little Johnny's own repressed sexual drives? All of these things? None of these things? He's sort of curious in that he's a composite of the animal and the machine. He's laughable to anyone but a small child though, that much is sure. Here are some images I've attached from the film. You can take a look at them and ponder the curious nature of Ro-Man.
Thursday, November 17, 2011
I'm in the process of refining my subject matter for writing very seriously. in the last six months, blog posts I've written have gotten somewhere around 5,000 hits, but close to a thousand of those hits were for two different posts. The answer to what they were completely blows my mind. The one got the most hits was a review of the single "Satanic Royalty" by Midnight for Jerry Magoo. I couldn't believe that, a.) it was someone else's idea and b.) I found it to be a relatively mediocre track. The other blog post that got a whole lot of hits was a review of the films Inseminoid and Humanoids from the Deep for my "solo" blog. That's even worse. I don't necessarily even consider those mediocre films, they're probably really actually poor films if I think about it for long. Hey, if that's what people like, inseminoid and "Satanic Royalty" by Midnight, that's the kind of thing I'll write about. Personally, I like the metal bands and the goth type bands, I like the horror films. Of course, I consider myself more than just someone who watches horror flicks and listens to metal and goth bands. That being the case, I may as well speak openly on my opinion on such things. I will here explore an example within the general topic of goth and metal music of the 80's, which I addressed in my review of "Satanic Royalty". If I had to rate my five favorite albums, they'd be about as follows 1. Joy Division: Closer 2. Voivod: War and Pain 3. The Cult: Love 4.The Cult:Dreamtime 5. Various Artists: In Goth Daze (goth compilation from Cleopatra Records) Those are albums I've known about for years and years and keep coming back to. If some young people interested in starting a new band approached me, I'd tell them to listen to those albums very, very closely. You'll notice that not one, but two early albums by The Cult appear on this list. The Cult began as a goth band under the names Southern Death Cult and Death Cult with vocalist Ian Astbury and ended the 80's as more or less an LA style hair metal band. Dreamtime and Love, their first and second album, are situated in a transitional period between those two polarities of sound. It's a distinctive sound. It's also a sound which a band would truly have to be able to play to create. The Cult was able to get away with it. They were able to get away with a lot- the singer Ian Astbury had a lyrical obsession with Native Americans and even tried desperately to look like one, but was in fact, British, though he was exposed to Native American culture by living near a Reservation outside of Montreal as a child. The other thing is that especially on the second of those albums, Love, they made musical and lyrical allusions to the 60's hippie movement, but the band members were about ten years to young to have had any direct involvement in it. A lot of early Cult has resurfaced in recent years. The above clip is from a live VHS called Dreamtime Live at the Lyceum from 1984. Footage from Dreamtime Live at the Lyceum ended up reincarnated on YouTube. The title is slightly misleading, many of the tracks on this release are not from the album Dreamtime, but are from when the band was known as Death Cult or Southern Death Cult. If you think back on the last decade of rock and roll, if you think back on Modest Mouse and The Strokes selling a whole lot of records, and then listen back on the tracks from Dreamtime, it's shameful what has come to the fore. The Cult at that point had both so much energy and so much sophistication. The future that they envisioned at that point unfortunately has become a future of the past by now. I'm no hippie, my politics are fringe right if anything. I don't use drugs at this point. From a musical perspective, from a perspective simply of sound, the first two cult albums, and to some extent the material recorded as Southern Death Cult or Death Cult, I think the Cult really had it at that point.
Thursday, November 10, 2011
Well,I'm moving back to Las Vegas tomorrow. The reasons for my leaving and coming back are too complicated to get into here. I think the question people who read my blog, that are familiar with my work might be surprised by the city that is generally my home, but let me clarify a few points. This was left on the other blog I write for, Art Observations with Jerry Magoo. It is for my review of the new William T. Vollmann book. I corrected the spelling. Here it goes: "Hello, I had the chance to see Vollmann give a reading of a short story at Fresno State University a couple years ago. It was a strange event. The audience was an older, local crowd. From what I could tell, they did not really appreciate his detailed account of sex with tentacled vegetation." The funny thing about that is- the sex with plants thing, that's not William T. Vollmann who did that. I've never heard of William T. Vollmann writing about having sex with plants with tentacles. That's Mark Von Schleggell the commentator is talking about. It's an error that betrays quite a bit of information accidentally I suppose it was a given that William T. Vollmann and Mark Von Schleggell are not household names exactly, I would have said William T. Vollmann was far more well known then Von Schleggell. To an extent that's true. However, here's the thing- William T. Vollmann and Mark Von Schlegell- what few people know who they are might not even be able to keep them straight. I'll be honest about it. It's really quite sad. What you have to understand is that Mark Von Schlegell and William T. Vollmann are relatively successful writers as far as it goes. They have publishing deals, something relatively hard to get. A lot of those experimental fiction guys were/are academics. It's brutal. I'm far to the right of most of those guys politically now, but it's still brutal to see that. I express that with the firmest of sincerity. It would be very easy to dismiss a city like Las Vegas as being uncultured, but then we would have to step back and really examine how much interest there really is in the Mark Von Schlegell and William T. Vollmann types even in New York. Jerry Magoo is primarily a New York based webpage. People are forced to spend a lot of time chasing paychecks and New York would appear to be be becoming more and more a city for the very wealthy. In other words, it's kind of irrelevant. Las Vegas doesn't have the cute little used book stores with the hipster in the horned rim glasses sitting behind the counter, but what of it?
Wednesday, November 9, 2011
Monday, November 7, 2011
Here we go with another black metal review. On-line, overwhelmingly the blogs I write that get the most hits are either horror film reviews or metal reviews. The audience for the horror film and metal reviews overlaps strongly with an audience of people that are strongly involved with the visual arts, especially after I started working with the Jerry Magoo blog, but it's still really those two topics that overwhelmingly grab the most attention. It's not necessarily the material that I care the most about, but I am more then willing to try and meet with my audience halfway. As such, I will discuss here the Canadian black metal band Megiddo, Not to be confused with the old Celtic Frost track "Dawn of Megiddo". Canada has provided us with a fair few good metal bands. I remain a devote Voivod fan after years and years. Cryptopsy is fair. I've been a fan of Akitsa since I first heard them on the Primitive North america compilation in 2009. I've been recommended Megiddo as being a band to check out if I like Akitsa, although Megiddo are from Ontario unlike the other bands, who are from Quebec where metal seems to have had a large following. I don't like paying for music, so it is for me to happily inform you that there 2000 album Megiddo is available in it's entirety on youtube if you look around. The comparison with Akitsa is valid. Both play a kind of primitive black metal recorded on low-fi. I wouldn't say that Megiddo is nearly as musically adventurous as some of the Akitsa I've heard. I will try to avoid using the vague and over-used term "experimental" because black metal itself constitutes such a cultural margin aesthetically, but Akitsa are very distinctive sounding. I've read Akitsa go as far as to cite Throbbing Gristle as an influence, they broke a lot more boundaries of genre definition then Megiddo did. I know that I've been insulting Genesis P. Orridge on here a lot but it is worth stating that in Throbbing Gristle, Genesis was one band mate out of four. Megiddo were much more of a straight ahead black metal band from what I've heard. The intro to "Across the Shores/Four Sons" is a little slower and sounds somewhat like a goth band, and there's a three minute noise track at the end, but The Devil and The Whore is almost entirely hard, nasty black metal. The lyrics are typically obsessed with standard black metal themes of annihilation, death, and Satan. "i will laugh at the death of your children" is a particularly choice lyric. They throw in two covers towards the end of the album, "Violence and Force" by Exciter and take this torch by Razor. It's an okay album. I'm not sure I'd rank it as highly as Voivod's War and Pain or Akitsa's excellent work, but for free it is well worth a listen.