* Sour grapes #1. “ I just hope you don’t buy the album expecting to be surprised. I hope you’re not one of those people who value spontaneity. “
* “ The painted ad on Tran Hung Dao would have beckoned thousands of soldiers and sailors as they headed into Cho Lon for nights of debauchery at the House of 500 girls. It would have stimulated the thirst of gamblers flocking to Le Grande Monde. The dark lady on the label might have winked at Graham Green as he scoured the steamy streets for atmo to spice up The Quiet American. “
* You don’t have to be familiar with Daft Punk‘s songs, nor must you be a fan of New Orleans brass band music, to appreciate this. Also, speaking of brass ..
* Sour grapes #2. ” Nothing about the original MTV format was new, and the ability of television to disrupt the way people listened to music wound up being utterly dwarfed by the ability of personal computing to disrupt it. If you believed MTV was the future of music, you were looking over at this plugged-in box, and the future of music was over in that plugged-in box. “
* Some nifty record covers. Even I don’t have a copy of Gods On Voodoo Moon.
* I don’t know much about music in New York : Gary Panter.
* Home sweet home : the New Orleans Murder Wall won’t stop growing. This, also, concerning the recent shootings and ” the subtle hierarchies that govern American mainstream coverage of horrible events. “
* Kira Roessler discusses the current state of Black Flag.
* Sour grapes #3. “ Unless young bands go back to steal fire from pre-1980s music they aren’t going to contribute much. “
* Nature sound mixer. And, hey, it’s Eno‘s birthday today. He’s 65 years old.
* Cool tricks.
* The best-looking American money ever, and the new space-themed Canadian five dollar bill.
* ENO : in NYC : ’78-’84. Dirty old subway in NYC.
* Some of the contents of the mysterious chest.
* “ You internet era kids have no idea what it was like to be young in this country in the early 80s—you literally could not escape the baby boomers. Their culture was everywhere. That’s the world that made punk exciting. Everything is too quick and easy now.”
* More ( heavily photoshopped ) ruin porn. It never gets old, does it?
* A tour diary, from last Summer, Cuba. I was there.
* The artful dodger, and SEX.
* Why are there no international music superstars from China? What’s it like to be an American living in Qatar? Who’s afraid of the TSA?
* Rock & Roll is so boring, it’s making Kurt Vile seem interesting.
* Discarded Image / Discarding Images, a Tumbler about violent, bizarre, and naughty art from the middle ages.
* Tracing changes in the ideological notion of personal authenticity that have been brought on by widespread social media use. Also, why bands are right about cameras at gigs.
* The Cosimo Code, an affectionate tribute to the great deeds of Cosimo Matassa and the musicians of New Orleans and the South.
* Prescription : Eno.
* Black gold : a mosaic detective story.
* Poor Chicago. The third coast.
* ” Prior to Hipgnosis, record covers were often graphically ( and typographically ) crude; the great psychedelic covers of 60s America, and the garish fantasies of Krautrock, had introduced outré imagery into music packaging, but it was Hipgnosis who combined startling imagery with the presentation standards of the best commercial art and design. “ On the death of Storm Thorgerson.
* More on Kowloon Walled City.
* ” What kept me reading Burroughs, was the extraordinary things he could do with the English language that I never encountered anywhere else. It was like discovering the one human being on Earth who could play slide guitar. “ William Gibson.
* The secret soup of New Orleans, and Airline Highway, a Tumblr about South Louisiana.
* ” Being a rock star is being a rock star, I don’t need to go into the details. What would you do if you were a rock star? “
* Capturing the still-practiced pagan rituals of Europe.
* Archaeologists dig into history of execution.
* The producer who discovered Drake, and worked with Dylan, Pink Floyd, R.E.M. and more, on music’s oddest comeback.
* Has anyone ever been killed by a falling piano?
* ” I got on a plane! “ Traveling around the world for 500 days. Also, the top 101 books for independent travel.
* Chuck said to Glen, “ This band is from Venice? Have them dress up like vatos. ” This Suicidal Tendencies shirt costs $3000. And, also, the whole gang.
* Between 1948 and 1986, during his career as a prison guard, Danzig Baldaev made over 3,000 drawings of tattoos.
* Down through the centuries, Moscow has been known for its “ thieving, murdering, fornication ” ( a traveler in the 17th century ) and as the “ seat of sloth ” ( Catherine the Great in the 18th ). In 1881, Tolstoy described Moscow thus in a diary entry: “ Stench, stones, luxury, poverty. Dissipation. A collection of robbers who have plundered the people and conscripted soldiers and judges to guard their orgies while they feast. ”
* Malcolm McLaren, Russ Meyer, Sid Vicious, Johnny Rotten, and Roger Ebert.
* On leaving New York.
* The 25 least-visited countries in the world. Also, dangerous countries, from most to least, in a map.
* This Music Leaves Stains, a Tumblr about The Misfits, packed with ephemera and photographs, many never seen before.
* Malformed, a collection of human brains.
* “ As I understand it, the American Constitution gave its citizens the right to bear arms as defense against the potential tyrannies of government. Regrettably, it would appear that those arms were not used to prevent such tyranny from arising, so that there now exists the most powerful, tyrannical hegemony ever know in the history of the world. So, rather than having become a positive guarantee for social justice, the right to bear arms has created a minefield of problems which, clearly, no one has a clue how to deal with. Fact is, if a gun is designed to kill people, that’s what it will be used for, so I guess the question we have to ask ourselves is whether or not we want to endorse that practice in any way at all. “ Penny Rimbaud.
* 40 years of music industry change, in a GIF.
* Audioklassiks : Technics.
* ” Here we are at the end of everything. I have a beard, you have a wig! HAHAHAHAHAHA! ” How to be old.
* By connecting several oscillators, the sound takes on a special quality. Also : ” to me, good music is a form of comedy. “
* Until you are chopsticks.
* Folk Funeraria, a pretty Tumblr about old American graveyards. Also, for the love of Kansas City, KCLUVSKC, a Tumblr, and The Pie Shops, a Tumblr about various old things, and UNDR, a classy and very specific Tumblr. Oh, and many diversions at Voyages Extraordinaires. And, oh, Tripadvisaargh, a funny Tumblr, material apparently sourced from real reviews on travel sites.
* A Supposedly Fun Thing I’ll Never Do Again, one of the best travel stories ever written, by David Foster Wallace, as it originally appeared in magazine form. Shipping Out.
* ” .. After that, his ribs would be hacked from his spine with an ax, one by one, and the bones and skin on both sides pulled outward to create a pair of “wings” from the man’s back. “ Debunking, or not, the idea of the Vikings as bloodthirsty looter-pillagers. The Vengeance of Ivarr the Boneless.
* Thor on Thor.
* Crumb’s records.
* ” Though they sometimes depict works of art, we seldom think of ( postcards ) as substantial works of art unto themselves. “
* Classic Recipes – sometimes, limitations are good ( in music production ) ( in many other things too ).
* Charlie Haughey is not a combat photographer.
* Farewell, Harry Stamps.
* The Dwarf, and other photo essays by Bruce Davidson.
* For those who want to go : A Long Train Journey.
* ” Having been a part of something, in my life, right? Deeply associated with something that has become, for some people, a historical, musical scene – and having seen other peoples’ tapes, video stuff – the way people treat that history, I can SEE the way it has been shaped. And once you realize that it’s so valuable, then you start to understand how all history is .. kind of a fiction. “ Rear Window.
* Related to that, BLACK FLAG : A 12-Step Program In Self-Reliance, and also THEIR WAR : Black Flag, The First Five Years.
* Houses that 70s architects lived in.
* Remembering Omni Magazine.
* You are listening to.
* God and booze.
* On the death of Stompin’ Tom Connors.
* The worst American restaurants in Europe.
* Old Engineering, a Tumblr. National Geographic Found, a Tumblr. Liar Town, a very funny Tumblr.
* I mentioned it here, briefly, and here’s the story : the cover of Houses Of The Holy.
* The shocking savagery of America’s early history.
* B is for bounce.
* Don’t let the teevee tube or the records being released fool you! Teenage America’s spirit is not sagging.
* In 1937, the city was both a world capital of artistic ferment and a slaughterhouse.
* Louisiana is the saddest state in the Union, according to this survey, but in another poll, New Orleans didn’t even make it onto a list of the top 20 most miserable cities. New Orleans will party to the end, although we really have nothing on Italy.
* What I am currently reading is Supernatural Strategies For Making A Rock n’ Roll Group.
* Nine days alone on Easter Island.
* Malformalady, a Tumblr. Autonomistan, a Tumblr. Also, Dreams Of Space. And Architecture Of Doom, a Tumblr. No, another Tumblr.
* “ Before Rimbaud, before the Surrealists, there was Nerval ( 1808 – 1855 ), living his life as if it were a lucid dream. Of course, it didn’t hurt that his mental skies flickered with the chain lightning of madness—bouts of insanity that condemned him to periodic stays in asylums and, ultimately, self-murder. ”
* “ Hello, good old times of actually listening and not switching through an album “. Rain Dogs.
* The corruption of Anthony Bourdain, the return of Emeril Lagasse, and the state of food television.
* I am really, really looking forward to seeing Rubble Kings.
* Rutherford has a unique vinyl collection. He only collects the first pressing of the Beatles’ White Album. He has 693 copies.
* The Plastinarium of Dr. Von Hagens.
* The bid to make the Modern Lovers’ Roadrunner the official rock song of Massachusetts is official.
* “Oh, Andy Capp, you wife-beating drunk. Heh heh heh.”
* “ They were and still are the prime contradictary truth about heavy metal. Tough guys who threw peace signs. Headbangers who smoked weed but cautioned against the depression it could cause. The bringers of a violent new noise who railed against the war in Vietnam. The producers of a sound that was at once primitavist and virtuoso. Literate and loutish. Frightening but fun. The harbingers of a sound that was brand new, while carrying on a tradition that was jet black and centuries old. Sometimes obviously daft, always limitlessly righteous. “
* Chicago. Why are there so many murders?
* Selling books to Johnny Cash.
* Read the first chapter of I Dreamed I Was A Very Clean Tramp, Richard Hell‘s new autobiography.
* There are millions of photos taken through airplane windows – here is a collection of the very best, and it’s worth looking at.
* Ten things you ( possibly ) don’t know about Kraftwerk. Also, Wolfgang Flür ( ” the world’s first electronic drummer “ ) left the band 32 years ago, but went to see them perform last month. Want more Kraftwerk? See Football, Motorik, And The Pulse Of Modernity.
* Vietnamese in New Orleans. I’ve been telling you for years, but don’t just take my word for it.
* ” If you asked me to tell you my very-favorite-ever cinematic document of a rock & roll band, I would have to break down and admit that it’s a 10-dollar import DVD of Dr. Hook and the Medicine Show doing a live-for-German-TV performance sometime in 1974. I have seen it at least 30 times. “
* The 53 band names you can never say on the radio. ( I have seen 10 of these groups in concert )
* Chicago. What the heck was going on at the Leaf Gum Company in the 1960s?
* For 40 years, this Russian family was cut off from all human contact, unaware of World War II.
* ” Q: Do you feel that the world is, on balance, improved by technology? “
A: ” Well, if you ask that question from the point of view of almost anything in this world that’s not a human being like you and me, the answer’s almost certainly No. “ Bruce Sterling, as he does every so often, comments on the future-now.
* Schoolboys’ hundred-year old paper planes that pre-date manned flight are found in the eaves of a chapel.
* ” I won Greta Garbo’s rock and pop records in an auction. I play them and talk about them. “
* If I was in the market for a bass guitar, I would probably get the Cliff Burton Signature Model.
* North Korea is a real country with real people.
* ‘ The doctor said, ” You’ve got cancer “. I was absolutely calm. And then later I began to feel almost euphoric. ‘ Wilko. Also, raw and live in ’75 : pure attitude, and you’ll notice that he doesn’t play with a pick.
* Major Scaled. Minor-key songs are Melodyned into a major key, and the result is very, very interesting. I particularly liked the Metallica one.
* What is Texas? Is Texas Texas anymore?
* “ Derided as witlessly negative when they first appeared, Black Sabbath were so simultaneously weird, hurt, and powerful that millions of people drank their essence to the dregs, and neither the band, nor their record label, nor the few critics of the time who loved them could ever really articulate why. “
* “ The Battle of Cold Harbor was in May and June of 1864. It’s interesting that scavengers and insects defleshed the skulls in less than a year. “
* So long, brick-and-mortar.
* Bristol is a mean, mean town. ( Criminal Wisdom showed it )
* Except for the fact that they let me stay onboard during the stops on the freezing overnight Yangon-Mandalay ride, this well-written account describes bus travel in Myanmar almost exactly as I experienced it.
* More things which English has no word for. ” Backpfeifengesicht “, ( ” a face badly in need of a fist ” ) for example.
* This guy was exposed to all the new stuff at once. Think about what that must be like.
* ” It’s beyond thinking, actually “. Another Green World, yet another documentary about Brian Eno. This one’s particularly good, but if there are a thousand more, I’ll watch a thousand more. There are so many great quotes in this one ( ” I was always impressed by music that I couldn’t penetrate the mystery of “ ), and you can hear him singing Buddy Holly. And then, 53:15 to 54:18, he sums up, with total accuracy, what music is to young people in 2013. My man.
* Something else I found through Criminal Wisdom : The largest collection of vintage Chinese ( and Japanese military ) execution postcards I have ever seen. The beheadings go on and on.
* Here’s something I didn’t know myself until I consulted with a surgeon about the planned operation to chisel some bone out of the inside of my skull so I could actually breathe through my nose ( it worked, sort of ).
* ” She ran in the bathroom and puked, and puked, and puked, and I sat there and I said, ‘I told you so, baby, I told you so’, and I went to the refrigerator, got a beer — I felt better, you know “. Watch Bukowski’s worst hangover.
* How to kill an earworm.
* THIS is a photographer.
* The surprisingly short history of the backpack.
* “ I’ve often wondered what would have happened had the North just let the south go. Would the North have developed a less belligerent ethos and a greater kinship with Canada while the South became more third-world like with a greater kinship with Mexico? Would the North without the South have had a better chance of working through the contradictions of capitalism and evolved more easily toward European or Canadian style social democracy? Would the South have found it easier to confront the moral contradictions of slavery without the rigidifying resentment of its victim narrative? “
* We are all found objects now.
* Re: New Orleans : what’s the story with that small castle-looking building among the homes and fishing camps near Irish Bayou? ( I’ve wondered this myself, driving to and fro )
* Sworn virgins.
* Born for hard luck.
* ” A good little jump number. These guys remind me of myself when I first started, I only knew three chords, too ” - Chuck Berry reviews punk singles.
* This is the nature of life in the lagoon, and, as the locals say, the water is very wet.
* Do you play guitar? Do you enjoy the music of The Birthday Party? Then, this.
* Human skulls deliberately warped into strange, alien-like shapes.
* Amoeba Music’s Vinyl Vaults is no Napster, despite what musicians say.
* Can tattoos be medicinal? Also, are tattoos safe? Additionally, ” Contemporary tattooing in the West can be traced to the 15th century, when European pilgrims would mark themselves with reminders of locations they visited, as well as the names of their hometowns and spouses to help identify their bodies should they die during their travels. “
* The basement.
* Re: Chicago : “ This to me is the most interesting thing I’ve ever posted. I could stare at these for hours. “
* A nice review of a record I helped a friend of mine with. But how will it play in Peoria?
* “ I REFUSE TO CATER TO THE BULLSHIT OF INNOCENCE. ” An interview with Maurice Sendak. He shaped your childhood with his wonderful books, of course, but you have no idea how cool he really was.
* The curse of Warholism. Also, a history of Warhol’s relationship with food. Additionally, the ghost of Andy Warhol visits the Warhol show at The Met.
* “ An old cabaret theater from the roaring ’20s has been uncovered in the heart of Berlin. The music hall had been buried in 30 tons of rubble since 1934 when it closed, perhaps as part of a crackdown on the cabaret scene by the Nazi regime. The theater was discovered by accident. “
* Who made that Rat distortion pedal?
* “ The blend of old and new Chinese architecture is ever-present in cities and villages, as older buildings are torn down and newer ones built at ever faster rates. “
* A shit-ton of Jack Kirby splash pages.
* The top six adult jokes hidden in children’s cartoons.
* Instant Google Street View, a fun shortcut.
* Tiny houses.
* Haunted men from everywhere, fighting anywhere, dying for causes not their own. Legionnaires need war.
* “ It has to be said, that when I was younger there were a hell of a lot more interesting derelict buildings around. “
* You can’t drown the loud sound!
* Sean’s bass.
* Photographing, among other things, Mexico’s Cholombiano street culture.
* ” More than a dozen different types of bar could be found in British pubs, besides the common public bar and saloon bar, many with careful, strict social gradations from one to the other, with a system of purdah and caste strict Hindus would appreciate. “ Shades, dives, and other varieties of British bar.
* Hey, it’s that guy who punched Danzig.
* Explanation of the Mastadong.
* “ Like thousands of people in Moscow, I was curious to see if my home was on the new database, showing the addresses of those killed in the purges – a sea of tens of thousands of blood-red dots on the map of Moscow. “
* Radio Tanzania : a disappearing history on tape.
* ” Today’s boredom is not hungry, a response to deprivation; it is a loss of cultural appetite, in response to the surfeit of claims on your attention and time. ”
* It’s been two years since the demise of the Technics 1200.
* An open letter about Frida Kahlo’s unibrow.
* I sat in on an interview with She’s Still Dead about Horror movies, DIY metal, and touring Cuba.
* How to make an indie film poster.
* A collection of Japanese ‘lawsuit’ guitars.
* Once USSR’s massive East German nuclear military base, and now a ghost town.
* Many old pianos are now being dumped, abandoned, neglected, smashed – even burnt.
* Fascinating vintage photos of beautiful buildings being demolished.
* Germans used to drink an astounding amount of beer.
* Skeletal remains found in upended tree; death investigator exhumes skull.
* Why we can’t solve big problems.
* Scientists use cadaver hands to study the dangers of pumpkin carving.
* I always wonder, where are they now?
* Everything you wanted to know about cannibalism but were afraid to ask.
* America’s looming burial crisis.
* Twelve of the world’s most fascinating cemeteries.
* ” If they’re exposed to something continually, the same songs over and over, it’s no different to being tortured. “
* Is the Underground Home from the World’s Fair still beneath Flushing Meadows – Corona Park?
* Listen to a movie.
* A story about my recent improbable trip to Cuba.
* ” We had to abandon the Western approach to goblins and ghosts and work with local ghost stories. “
* The lowdown on the Rod Stewart stomach-pump rumor.
* “ I’m not trying to say there’s no there there. I’m trying to say there’s no there. “
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