Funeral Parade of Roses (Bara no soretsu)
Black and White. 1969. Japan. 105 minutes.
Directed by Toshio Matsumoto
Unequivocally the best Japanese 60s avant-pop tranny tragedy I’ve seen, Funeral Parade of Roses is a must-see time capsule (I only wish the future Thetans who sift through my ashes hope this is what the 20th century is all about). Part self-conscious art film, part exploitation film, and part gonzo documentary on Tokyo’s underground scene – though where the zones overlap is up for grabs. Even on DVD, the black and white dazzles, as one quotable image supplants another. If you’re into the whole Asian catholic schoolgirl ladyboy thing, and who isn’t anymore, this is the jackpot.
Pithy introduction and discussion following the screening – this is part one in our run of “New Waves” around the world.
This is perhaps the greatest camping accessory ever made. A sleeping bag that looks like a bear—perfect for scaring away bears that show up in the night… unless they fall in love and try to get all up in that shit….?
This is a greatest sleeping bag. You can wear it to sleep when you go camping. It is safe that no bear will attack your camp and eat you? Or you just want to wear it, and then scare your friend when he(she) wake up in the morning.(a good idea!) Well made and Cool! By artist Eiko Ishizawa.
Swen’s Weblog drops 50 hours of Autechre DJ sets, downloadable for free from Archive.org. Sweet god of glitch! Entries include:
27h set for xltronic radio in 2006
A 12h mix on 23–24 February 2008 to coincide with the release of Quaristice.
A 12,5h Mix, on 2–3 March 2010 to coincide with the release of Oversteps
Always the savvy marketer, Zappa sure knew how to reach his audience, eh? As seen in Daredevil #38.
And here’s another piece of obscure Zappa ephemera, a Clio Award-winning soundtrack for a Luden’s Cough Drops TV commercial that he did in 1967.
This article from the New York Times about a totally unknown, all black proto-punk band called Death, circa 1974, has me salivating to hear this CD. Except for some hardcore music fanatics, Death were totally forgotten, even by the participants, really. Then one of their kids heard his father’s voice on a record at a party in San Francisco and this started a chain of events that saw the music of Death released on CD by Drag City Records:
The group’s music has been almost completely unheard since the band stopped performing more than three decades ago. But after all the years of silence, Death’s moment has finally arrived. It comes, however, nearly a decade too late for its founder and leader, David Hackney, who died of lung cancer in 2000. “David was convinced more than any of us that we were doing something totally revolutionary,” said Bobby Sr., 52.
Forgotten except by the most fervent punk rock record collectors — the band’s self-released 1976 single recently traded hands for the equivalent of $800 — Death would likely have remained lost in obscurity if not for the discovery last year of a 1974 demo tape in Bobby Sr.’s attic. Released last month by Drag City Records as ”,,, For the Whole World to See” Death’s newly unearthed recordings reveal a remarkable missing link between the high-energy hard rock of Detroit bands like the Stooges and MC5 from the late 1960s and early ’70s and the high-velocity assault of punk from its breakthrough years of 1976 and ’77. Death’s songs “Politicians in My Eyes,” “Keep On Knocking” and “Freakin Out” are scorching blasts of feral ur-punk, making the brothers unwitting artistic kin to their punk-pioneer contemporaries the Ramones, in New York; Rocket From the Tombs, in Cleveland; and the Saints, in Brisbane, Australia. They also preceded Bad Brains, the most celebrated African-American punk band, by almost five years.
Jack White of the White Stripes, who was raised in Detroit, said in an e-mail message: “The first time the stereo played ‘Politicians in My Eyes,’ I couldn’t believe what I was hearing. When I was told the history of the band and what year they recorded this music, it just didn’t make sense. Ahead of punk, and ahead of their time.”
The teenage Hackney brothers started playing R&B in their parents’ garage in the early ’70s but switched to hard rock in 1973, after seeing an Alice Cooper show. Dannis played drums, Bobby played bass and sang, and David wrote the songs and contributed propulsive guitar work, derived from studying Pete Townshend’s power-chord wrist technique. Their musicianship tightened when their mother allowed them to replace their bedroom furniture with mikes and amps as long as they practiced for three hours every afternoon. “From 3 to 6,” said Dannis, 54, “we just blew up the neighborhood.”
This Band Was Punk Before Punk Was Punk (New York Times)
Effective short film from Robert Greenwald’s Brave New Films (who I know through my days at Disinformation, of course) that exposes the evil, predatory practices of the very insurance company where I have my own individual policy, Anthem Blue Cross of California. Each month I pay an exorbitant fee—which is about to be nearly doubled—and I’ve not been in the hospital since I was born. And it doesn’t cover anything, not even name brand prescriptions! I plan to switch over to Kaiser-Permanante as soon as possible. I hate Anthem Blue Cross. It’s run by a bunch of vile assholes.
My god what this must have looked like to Carl Burnett’s audience in 1973! What did my grandmother, a big Carol Burnett fan, think of this? Knowing her she probably loved it.
“Something about Hello Kitty just makes me think of the dump truck load of saccharine that it takes to give a lab rat cancer. The wine is actually quite pleasant, with hints of red fruits and a nice floral bouquet. It is not cloying at all, as some sweet sparklers can be.
This 12” single, the only release by Czukay and Plank under the Les Vampyrettes guise, is one of my favorite slabs of vinyl, period. Deep, dark, menacing, surprising, timeless, tantalizingly brief. Play loud, startle your cat.