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TV weirdness: Joe Strummer accepts music award from Bob Mould on behalf of Mick Jones!
12.06.2011
02:44 am
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Ron Reagan Jr. and Sandra Bernhard introduce Bob Mould who presents Big Audio Dynamite with a music award. Joe Strummer accepts!

1986. From the short-lived New Music Awards.

Another winner from Mick Stadium.
 

Posted by Marc Campbell
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12.06.2011
02:44 am
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Cancel my subscription to the Resurrection: Greil Marcus’s ‘The Doors’
12.06.2011
12:15 am
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Listening to The Doors’ second album, Strange Days, while peaking on half a tab of Purple Owsley was one of those mindbending events that alter the course of a young man’s life forever. I was 16 years old, living in the suburbs of Virginia and, with the exception of a couple of freak friends, was pretty much alone in the world. There weren’t a lot of support systems during the Summer Of Love in the American South for a kid who wanted to explore his spiritual side. Organized religion had more than failed me, it terrified me. Catholicism spooked me so bad that even the sight of a nun or priest would send me rushing in a cold sweat in the direction of the nearest mental exit sign.

Getting LSD was the easy part. Knowing the best way to navigate the experience was the challenge. You just took the trip and put your faith in the loving hands of the cosmos. At least that’s what I did. Jim Morrison and his band mates were the dark guides on my solitary psychedelic journey.

Well the music is your special friend
Dance on fire as it intends
Music is your only friend
Until the end
Until the end
Until the end!

The Doors’ apocalyptic rock might seem like an entry way to a bad trip, but for me their music echoed and expanded upon an interior shadow world I had always been drawn to and their anti-authoritarianism played into my distrust of bully gods and their black-robed hitmen. LSD gave me a glimpse into the spiraling DNA that contained everything I needed to know about the Universe and all I had to do was crack the code.The Doors provided the soundtrack in my search for the key. A search that continues to this day. Breaking through to the other side turned out to be harder than I imagined.

Jim Morrison was the first rock star that tapped into the same rich vein of poetic dreaming that had lured me into the web of the French surrealists and the American counter-culture. Here was a young Navy brat, like myself, who drew inspiration from Rimbaud, Baudelaire, the Beats, The Living Theater and cinema. He took it all in and spun it back out into lyric-driven music that was familiar and strange at the same time. Intense and filled with mystery and sex, you couldn’t call it pop, but you could dance to it….or melt to it like a pillar of Biblical salt. In my rock and roll world, Morrison was the benign high priest who led me not so gently into a dark night of the soul shot through with glistening shards of seductive light.

Along with most of the rock groups I grew up with, I don’t listen to The Doors these days. The iconic songs of my youth are etched in my genes - musical scarification. I hear them whenever I want by tilting my head in the direction of the Akashic records that spin on turntables somewhere in the Bardo. Years of hearing “Light My Fire” and “When The Music’s Over” on classic rock radio has dulled some of the magic for me. Yet I still get excited when I see a new book on The Doors, particularly when it’s written by someone who was “there.” The thought that hidden secrets might be unlocked from old songs making them feel new again or that some lost piece of history has been unearthed like a rock and roll version of the Dead Sea Scrolls triggers little jolts of excitement along my spine as electric as a Nicolai Tesla neck massage. Yes, hope springs eternal for fools like me.

Greil Marcus’s new book The Doors: A Lifetime Of Listening To Five Mean Years teased me into thinking there might be something fresh to be said about The Doors. Marcus has a rep for knowing a thing or two about rock and roll and pop culture, so I assumed he’d bring something to the mix that lesser writers managed to overlook, you know, a different perspective. But Marcus fails in almost every respect to engage the reader. Even the most devout Doors’ fan will find this slim volume of overstuffed prose and wild tangents a numbing experience. The Marcus perspective consists of bloated descriptions of Doors’ songs and performances, descriptions that are so subjective and adjective heavy that at times it’s like reading Olympia Press fetish porn by someone named “Anonymous.”

The Doors is less a book about the band than it is the experience of being subjected to Marcus’s stream of consciousness vamps on Thomas Pynchon, cult flick Pump Up The Volume, Oliver Stone’s dreadful Doors movie, Val Kilmer’s post-Morrison career, 20th century pop art, Eduardo Paolozzi, the Manson Family and so on. None of which he connects in any compelling way to the subject at hand (the subject becoming less clear as the book lurches along). It’s as if Marcus put some of The Doors’ music on shuffle and started writing whatever popped into his head - a Jackson Pollock action painting connected to The Doors by the mere juxtaposition of sharing the same room as their music. There are threads of elegant symmetry in Marcus’s writing but the center wobbles like a bead of sweat on a brooding hipster’s brow.

Read The Doors to get inside of Greil Marcus’s head if that’s of interest to you. He’s a smart guy and the book gives him an opportunity to show it off. But as a book about one of the planet’s great rock bands, The Doors is a brainy wankfest in which little of any significance is actually said. No amount of pop culture name-dropping and metaphoric over-kill in describing The Doors’ art can obscure the fact that there’s a big hole where the soul of a book ought to be. Marcus claims to be a Doors’ fan and yet there’s little love for the band between the pages of this frustratingly irrelevant book. The Doors may have been a labor of love for Marcus, but for the reader it’s just labor.

Meanwhile, somewhere in the south of France, an overweight bearded poet is writing his autobiography about his early days as a rock star: The End by J.M.

Video: The Doors interviewed in New York in 1969 for public television.
 

Posted by Marc Campbell
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12.06.2011
12:15 am
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‘Beyond the Valley of the Dolls’ star Cynthia Myers, RIP
12.05.2011
08:37 pm
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Sad to hear that Cynthia Myers, best known for her roll as bass playing Casey Anderson in the fictional all-girl rockers, “The Carrie Nations” in Russ Meyer’s Beyond the Valley of the Dolls, and for being Playboy magazine’s Playmate of the Month for the December 1968 issue, died on November 4, 2011.

She was 61. The cause of her death is unknown.
 

 
Thank you Douglas DeMille

Posted by Richard Metzger
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12.05.2011
08:37 pm
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Happy Particles: Beautiful debut album ‘Under Sleeping Waves’
12.05.2011
07:38 pm
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“I like to describe us as musical hypoalgesia because it’s silly and throw away, but kinda of a pretty idea too.” Steven Kane is talking about his band, Happy Particles, a talented sextet of musicians from Glasgow, who have just released their debut album, Under Sleeping Waves.

The band originally formed around Kane, who says:

“I had written a few songs, and basically asked people I was already in a band with to join, I also asked people who were in bands in Glasgow I liked. Pretty simple really, or pretty lucky to be more accurate.”

It wasn’t luck, but genuine talent and a shared interest and admiration that brought the Particles together - Alan Doherty - guitar, bass; Ricky Egan - guitar; James Swineburn - saxophone, rhodes piano; Gordon Farquhar - drums, percussion; Graeme Ronald - bass; and Steven Kane - guitar, vocals, laptop, piano.

Happy Particles are like a mini-supergroup with each member having a successful career with other bands: Doherty is with Prayer Rug, Egan is in Tangles, Farquhar with Stapleton, while Kane, Swineburn and Ronald are with with Remember Remember.

“As I say, it’s all connections through admiration of each others’ work. We are all pretty geeky and silly really, it just seemed pretty easy to play together.”

For a debut, Under Sleeping Waves is an stunningly assured and goosebumpingly good album.

“We recorded it with our friend Robin Sutherland in a converted barn in Dundee, and it was mastered by Ian Cook (Aereogramme/Unwinding Hours). It has various influences running through it from classical to shoe-gaze to slow-core guitar rock.

“Some tracks were almost finished before being brought to the band while others were written while jamming and others during the recording process itself. It’s a pretty varied record musically and this has probably got something to do with the fact it was all written and pieced together quite collage-like in some respects.

“Some of the tracks were written specifically to be as minimal as possible, trying to ring out as much from simple melodies as we could without it being boring.

“Some were written and then string arrangements were later done by James and Graeme individually, specifically to be more textured/complex. Lyrically I like to deal with abstractions that can also be personal to more people than just myself rather than beating someone with an obvious statement over the head.”

The subtlety and shimmering texture of tracks, such as “Aerials”, “Infinite Jet”, “Slowness” and “Classes in Silence”, makes Under Sleeping Waves the wish list album of the Christmas season and confirms my belief that the Happy Particles are destined for great things in 2012.

Under Sleeping Waves is available as a pre-order on bandcamp now - with an immediate download of two tracks. The album will be officially released on Christmas Day. 
 

 
 

  ‘Aerials’ - Happy Particles
 
Previously on Dangerous Minds

Remember Remember: ‘Imagining Things’


New Music: Steven Cossar’s sublime Pioneers of Anaesthetic


 

Posted by Paul Gallagher
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12.05.2011
07:38 pm
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T’was the Doctor Who Night Before Christmas?
12.05.2011
06:06 pm
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YouTube user JerryBerryBass says, “A Whovian Night Before Christmas. Sort of.”

Merry Christmas to all and EXTERMINATE!
 

 
(via Doctor Who Facebook page)

Posted by Tara McGinley
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12.05.2011
06:06 pm
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Charles Bukowski walks past Charles Bukowski
12.05.2011
04:57 pm
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I can’t find the provenance of this one. Anyone know?
 
Update: It’s from Bukowski’s “Shakespeare Never Did This” with photographs by German photographer Michael Montfort. Thanks to everyone who wrote in!
 
(via KMFW)

Posted by Tara McGinley
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12.05.2011
04:57 pm
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Teenybopper goes down on a ‘Superstar’
12.05.2011
04:48 pm
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Peters on wheels. Phallic-shaped trucks deliver creamy treats to the eager masses.
 
This Australian commercial for an ice cream bar foregos subtext and heads right for the center of the peach-fuzzed meatpit of mortal delight, leaving this viewer with a slightly queasy feeling. The thrust of the thing is given an added bit of explicit creepiness when you consider that the Superstar bar is made by a company named “Peters.”

“You got to bite off the big strawberry points to get to the creamy vanilla center.”

Grab yourself a Superstar.
 

Posted by Marc Campbell
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12.05.2011
04:48 pm
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‘Mr Yuk is mean, Mr Yuk is green!’
12.05.2011
04:21 pm
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Mr. Yuk was the icon of an effective anti-poisoning campaign aimed at young children that was developed by the Children’s Hospital of Pittsburgh. The Children’s Hospital opened the country’s first poison center in 1971 and also set up the first 24-hour poison hotline. The hospital helped spread this concept to other places, too, by producing generic TV commercials that could be customized with local telephone numbers and lurid, lime green Mr. Yuk stickers.

In 1971, there was really no such thing as today’s child safe packaging, and the hospital’s director, Dr. Richard Moriarty, saw a problem with the traditional “skull and crossbones” poison warning: As a resident of Pittsburgh and a fan of the Pittsburgh Pirates baseball team, Moriarty saw how local children might come to think of this symbol as something to do with the Pirates—or pirates—and that it might indicate “fun” to them, and came up with the concept of Mr. Yuk to replace it.

If you grew up in the greater Pittsburgh area, for generations the Mr. Yuk song was drilled into your head, but it was well-known in other parts of the country, too. My mother had a half-used sheet of Mr Yuk stickers in a drawer in her kitchen for decades. It might still be there for all I know. The Children’s Hospital of Pittsburgh has on online gift shop where you can purchase Mr Yuk stickers and more.

Dig the spooky Moog soundtrack and paranoiac visions of demonically possessed common household cleansers in the infamous Mr. Yuk TV spot. Note how the local branding is badly botched:
 

Posted by Richard Metzger
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12.05.2011
04:21 pm
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‘The best band photo I’ve ever seen’
12.05.2011
03:32 pm
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Yes, I know it’s ‘shopped, but it gave me a case of the LOLs. Seriously, the longer you stare at it the better it gets.

The image is of some Christian metalcore band I’ve never heard of called A Plea for Purging. (WHAT does this name mean, anyway?)
 
(via reddit)

Posted by Tara McGinley
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12.05.2011
03:32 pm
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Earliest known footage of Elvis, Buddy Holly (plus Johnny Cash and Carl Perkins)
12.05.2011
02:35 pm
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This is what it says on YouTube:

This colour clip was shot silent in 1955 in Oklahoma City while Holly and Elvis Presley were working the two bottom slots on a country package tour headlined by Hank Snow — and apparently represents not only the earliest film footage of Holly but that of Elvis as well (he’s dressed in a neon-bright green shirt and he’s already a physically commanding figure).

Other YouTubers are saying this was shot in Buddy Holly’s high school in Lubbock, Texas, the following year. Whatever the case, you can also catch Carl Perkins, and at :58 seconds in, a really young-looking Johnny Cash.
 

 
(via Everlasting Blort)

Posted by Richard Metzger
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12.05.2011
02:35 pm
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