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Birth of the heavy: 50 years of The Kinks’ ‘You Really Got Me’
09:01 am


The Kinks
Dave Davies

The misconception that a pre-Yardbirds/Zeppelin Jimmy Page played the hectic guitar solo on the Kinks’ stunningly durable first hit “You Really Got Me” seems like it will never die, despite being denied repeatedly, for decades, by the song’s producer Shel Talmy, Page himself, and Kinks guitarist Dave Davies, who, as the actual pair of hands behind that solo, must be singularly miffed that he’s been so widely denied credit for it for five decades. (Davies also famously invented, by slashing the speaker cone of his cheap amp, the guitar distortion effect that became practically a requirement in hard rock forever after that song hit. It bears mentioning that he was 17 years of age at the time.)

Just this last summer, a BBC documentary called London’s Tin Pan Alley: Danny Baker’s Musical History Tour repeated the long-debunked Page myth, prompting a response on Davies’ Facebook profile:

That justifiably salty post was the next day toned down a bit to this:

Perhaps the error is being corrected, as the doc is, as of this posting, no longer available for viewing on the BBC’s web site.

The song first appeared on Billboard’s charts on September 26, 1964—fifty years ago today. Its success was dramatic. The Kinks had two flop singles behind them, and their contract with the Pye records label was for three singles. “You Really Got Me” didn’t just launch the Kinks’ career, it saved it, and the label didn’t even approve of its release. Details of the single’s backstory are bared in Thomas M. Kitts book Ray Davies: Not Like Everybody Else.

The Kinks’ path…began on August 4, 1964, with the release of “You Really Got Me.” Although audiences had responded enthusiastically to the song since the Dave Clark Five tour, record executives thought it too loud and crude, lacking in melody, and too far removed from the harmonies and smooth rhythms of the popular Merseybeat sound—one executive, according to Ray, compared Dave’s guitar to a “barking dog.” Pye Records would have preferred the Kinks to record something else for their third and, most likely, final single. But with two failed efforts behind them and their career in jeopardy, the Kinks insisted on “You Really Got Me,” and to anger executives further, the barely twenty-year-old, unproven lead singer and composer demanded to re-record the song because the production on the first recording dissatisfied the band. Pye only yielded to Davies because Larry Page, the representative of Kassner Music assigned to the Kinks, threatened to withhold the mechanical license to the song. Pye agreed to allow the Kinks to re-record “You Really Got Me,” but at the band’s expense—costs were assumed by Wace and Collins [London businessmen who supported the Kinks early on]. Then, having fulfilled its end of a three-single contract with the Kinks, the company could release the band from the label.


That should go down in history as shocking executive myopia to rival the famous Decca honcho who passed on the Beatles.

Here are the Kinks performing the song on Shindig in 1965.

Dave Daives new solo album Rippin’ Up Time is due out in October.

Previously on Dangerous Minds
Kink think: Luscious fashion ads from 1966 starring Dave Davies—and Terylene, the wonder fabric
Was the Kinks’ ‘Dead End Street’ promo film the world’s first concept music video?
The Kinks’ ‘You Really Got Me’: Kinky Barbie version

Posted by Ron Kretsch | Leave a comment
Sorted for E’s & Wizz: The man who makes art out of ecstasy pills
08:22 am


Chemical X

The artist Chemical X turns ecstasy pills into art.

Arranging the pills by their color, Chemical X then uses the “disco biscuits” to create mosaics of doves, smileys, rising suns—those associated logos of ecstasy tablets—and skulls. Chemical X says his art allows the viewer to re-examine their relationship with “an old friend or perhaps a feared enemy.”

Known for designing the original Ministry Of Sound logo, Chemical X has previously collaborated with Banksy and Damien Hirst. His last exhibition in London was closed down over fears about thousands of MDMA-laced beans on site. Now, Chemical X is exhibiting his most recent work at The Ark in London, as part of a group exhibition organised by Bear Cub Gallery between 26th September and 2nd October.

I suppose the only way to find out if these pills are genuinely ecstasy is to lick the art works and see.
More art and ecstasy, after the jump…

Posted by Paul Gallagher | Leave a comment
Shock Value: New York’s underground ‘Cinema of Transgression’
07:47 am


Lydia Lunch
Richard Kern
Nick Zedd

There are times in life when it seems that certain things, events, people or books have been strategically placed for our benefit. For example, I read Nick Zedd’s Totem of the Depraved which ends with the filmmaker homeless, on the streets looking for a place to stay when I was homeless, wandering streets, sleeping rough, and getting by however I could. The book was apposite and Zedd’s words kept me company through some uncomfortable nights. And of course, there was the inspiration, the small luminous epiphany—if artists like Zedd could get by, stay sane, live and create, then so could I.

Self-styled “King of the Underground” Nick Zedd was the pioneer and major player of New York’s Cinema of Transgression in the late 1970s and 1980s with his films They Eat Scum, Geek Maggot Bingo and Police State. Knowing that “History is whoever gets to the typewriter first,” Zedd edited the Xeroxed and stapled together zine The Underground Film Bulletin and wrote (under various aliases) reviews for his own films. In 1985, he composed the Cinema of Transgression Manifesto:

We who have violated the laws, commands and duties of the avant-garde; i.e. to bore, tranquilize and obfuscate through a fluke process dictated by practical convenience stand guilty as charged.

We openly renounce and reject the entrenched academic snobbery which erected a monument to laziness known as structuralism and proceeded to lock out those filmmakers who possesed the vision to see through this charade.

Zedd (writing under the pseudonym Orion Jeriko) described his comrades as “underground invisibles” and named them:

Zedd, Kern, Turner, Klemann, DeLanda, Eros and Mare, and DirectArt Ltd, a new generation of filmmakers daring to rip out of the stifling straight jackets of film theory in a direct attack on every value system known to man.

And announced what they were going to do:

We violate the command and law that we bore audiences to death in rituals of circumlocution and propose to break all the taboos of our age by sinning as much as possible. There will be blood, shame, pain and ecstasy, the likes of which no one has yet imagined. None shall emerge unscathed.

Since there is no afterlife, the only hell is the hell of praying, obeying laws, and debasing yourself before authority figures, the only heaven is the heaven of sin, being rebellious, having fun, fucking, learning new things and breaking as many rules as you can. This act of courage is known as transgression.

We propose transformation through transgression - to convert, transfigure and transmute into a higher plane of existence in order to approach freedom in a world full of unknowing slaves.

Filmmaker and photographer Richard Kern described the Cinema of Transgression as “a loose coalition of people who just joined together in order to have a movement.”

Along with Zedd, Kern was one of the was the group’s main players, making short brutal (some might say “depraved”) films like You Killed Me First (1985), Thrust in Me (1985), The Right Side of My Brain (1985) and Fingered (1986). These films teetered on the wire, and were so personally demanding (mentally and physically and in drink and drugs) that Kern eventually left New York City for a while for the sake of his health. 

Artist, writer, actress and performer, Lydia Lunch appeared in many of Kern’s movies and saw the Cinema of Transgression as a way to “show the ugly fucking truth the truth. Period.” Around her were artists like Joe Coleman, who began his career by biting the heads off mice, and became an alchemist—turning pain into gold.

While much of the Cinema of Transgression is now mainstream or like Kern’s photos suitable for the fashion shoot or cat walk, Nick Zedd continues to plow his own visionary path as artist and filmmaker. I, at least, now have a roof over my head.

Angélique Bosio’s documentary Llik Your Idols captures the excitement, thrill and power of the Cinema of Transgression, interviewing Nick Zedd, Richard Kern, Lydia Lunch, Joe Coleman, Sonic Youth’s Thurston Moore and others.


Posted by Paul Gallagher | Leave a comment
Pictures of Marc Bolan riding on top of things
07:22 am


Marc Bolan

Marc Bolan riding a tiny shiny tank
What started out as a desire to spend some time looking at photos of the forever young Marc Bolan (we’ve all been there), led me to spend many satisfying hours in a glam rock rabbit hole full of feather boas, and mind-boggling sparkly menswear. Among the thousands of images of Bolan that caught my eye were a few that had the electric warrior riding on top of things. No big deal you say? I mean, if you’ve seen one rock icon riding on top of a horse while out of their mind, you’ve seen them all, right? Wrong. To prove my point, here is a collection of six photos with Marc Bolan riding on top of everything from a shiny toy tank to a tiger.
Marc Bolan riding on top of a carousel horse
Marc Bolan riding on top of a carousel horse
Marc Bolan riding on top of a bike
Marc Bolan riding on top of a bike
Marc Bolan riding on top of a skateboard
Marc Bolan riding on top of a skateboard
Marc Bolan riding on top of a tiger
Marc Bolan riding on top of a tiger
Marc Bolan riding on top of a cloud
Marc Bolan riding on top of a cloud

Posted by Cherrybomb | Leave a comment
#RepublicansArePeopleToo campaign is a masterpiece of bad marketing, a rich tapestry of idiocy

Who the fuck didn’t see this one coming?

The general answer, of course seems pretty obvious—the perpetually clueless and tone deaf Republican Party—but the person in particular, apparently, to blame for this completely idiotic SCREAMING OUT FOR MERCILESS RIDICULE campaign is one of Mitt Romney’s former advertising guru “Mad Men” (and we all know how well that turned out), a Texan named Vinny Minchillo.

Minchillo hopes that his new “grassroots” campaign, on Facebook and on Twitter with the hashtag #imarepublican, will make it harder for people to demonize Republicans, as he told The New Republic:

“On social media, I’ve been called every name in the book,” Minchillo said. “It’s become socially acceptable to talk about Republicans in the most evil terms possible and that doesn’t seem right. We wanted to do this to really remind people that Republicans are friends, neighbors and do things that maybe you wouldn’t expect them to do.

“People, I’m afraid, think that Republicans spend their days huddling over a boiling cauldron throwing in locks of Ronald Reagan’s hair. … We thought let’s get out there and show who Republicans really are: regular folks interested in making the world a better place.”

Minchillo is clearly operating under the delusion that there’s something sly, clever or tongue-in-cheek about what he’s doing. I wonder how he’s going to feel when he watches Jon Stewart, Stephen Colbert, Bill Maher, John Oliver, every pundit, Twitter, Facebook AND THE ENTIRE INTERNET trash this nonsense like it’s the stupidest thing anyone has ever thought up?


See how that works, Vinny?

MEMO TO THE GOP: If you need an advertising and social media campaign to convince a HUGE swath of people who already think you’re a bunch of fuckin’ assholes that you’re really not fuckin’ assholes, perhaps you’ve got a larger problem on your hands? If you have to TELL other people that you’re just like them, perhaps their perception that you’re not just like them is justified because you wouldn’t really need to point that out in the first place, now, would you?

It isn’t easy being a Republican these days.

There are people who will stick up for Genghis Khan before they’ll defend a Republican. (“Genghis was just misunderstood.”)

We love political discourse. We encourage political discourse. But when did “Republican” become a dirty word?

Here’s the deal: before you post another bullying comment, think about this:

Republicans are people, too.

And you know what? Some of them don’t even have tiny shriveled penises or require motorized scooters to haul their asses around. Many Republicans aren’t racists! Some of them are under the age of 65 and are not angry white males who watch Fox News all day long and shit in Depends diapers. WHICH IS EXACTLY THE PERCEPTION THAT THIS RISIBLE CAMPAIGN IS REINFORCING! All anyone is talking about is “the problem” that this is supposed to be combating!

If this isn’t the equivalent of a gigantic Las Vegas marquee-sized “KICK ME” sign on the back of the GOP, I don’t know what would be.

It’s the most ridiculous thing in… days to come out of the fetid swamp of what passes for ideas in the Republican Party. If hapless Vinny saw this goofy campaign as a way for him to jockey for position for the 2016 Presidential race, Vinny, I hate to tell ya, brah, you done goofed. This is the worst!

Here are a few choice comments taken from what are probably the most consistently intelligent forums on any political or news blog, Talking Points Memo. Just some random recent comments, I’m not digging deep for any of this:

I believe all Muslims are suspicious and should be rounded up into internment camps. #ImARepublican

Why, yes, my tattoos include swastikas #ImARepublican

“Redskin” is a term of respect, honor, tradition. #ImARepublican

My father punched me when I was a kid, and I TURNED OUT FINE! Right? RIGHT?! #ImARepublican

I am stupid, evil, and utterly devoid of humanity! #IamARepublican

I prattle on endlessly about the necessity for common citizens like me to own guns in case the government infringes upon the people’s rights, and then I vote for referenda that infringe upon people’s rights. #ImARepublican

Of course I’m a hypocrite. #ImARepublican

Disenfranchising minority voters is OK by me! After all, they’re not white like I am. #ImARepublican

I don’t think everyone deserves health care. #ImARepublican

My party will soon be demographically insignificant. #ImARepublican

I pledge allegiance to the Kochs… #ImARepublican

You get the idea. Here’s my favorite because it communicates SO MUCH:

I think this guy should be making decisions that affect millions. #IAmARepublican


It’s a mite (Mitt?) early for the memes to be showing up in any real number yet, give it a few hours (or even a few more minutes), but the ridicule on Twitter for the #ImARepublican hashtag is pretty good already.

And here’s the motherload of LOL, the video. You’ll note that it’s important for them to have you know that Republicans shop at Trader Joe’s(?), use Macs(?) and “have feelings, too”(?)—and yet there are apparently no members of the LGBT or Muslim communities in the GOP whatsoever. What. there were NO pics of fabulous drag queens, buffed WeHo boys or anyone with a beard and turban in the stock photo database?

For some reason that video reminded me of this classic Tom Tomorrow cartoon:


Posted by Richard Metzger | Leave a comment
Iggy Pop and Peggy Lee in mesmerizing mashup video of ‘The Passenger’ and ‘Fever’
08:51 am


Iggy Pop
Peggy Lee

Iggy Pop and Peggy Lee
The audio portion of this fantastic mashup of Iggy Pop and Peggy Lee has been around for a while, but a former New Yorker now living in Shanghai named Eric Bochene, has put together a hypnotic video he calls “I Say Passenger La-La Fever,” that blends Lee’s classy Rat Pack world with Iggy’s drug-soaked panic attack, perfectly.

You can hear a few more of Bochene’s mashups over at his YouTube channel


Posted by Cherrybomb | Leave a comment
A pencil of light: The Surrealist films of Man Ray
08:14 am


Man Ray

Apart from his glittering career as a photographer, painter and “maker of Surreal objects,” the American artist Man Ray was also a filmmaker of considerable skill and originality.

Born Emmanuel Radnitzky in Pennsylvania on August 27th, 1890, Man Ray was the first of four children born to Russian immigrants. When he was seven, the family moved to Brooklyn where he shortened his first name from “Manny” to “Man” and because of the anti-semitism rife in New York at the time, the family changed their surname from Radnitzky to Ray—hence Manny Radnitzky became “Man Ray.” From an early age he assisted his parents with their work in the garment trade—his father was a tailor, his mother made simple designs—and it was hoped the eldest son Manny would follow in the family business. But Man Ray had other ambitions and he taught himself to draw by spending time in museums and art galleries, and eventually won a scholarship to study architecture, but he rejected it in favor of being an artist. This decision was confirmed for Man Ray after he saw the Armory Show in New York, 1913.

In 1915, Man Ray had his first solo exhibition. He then decided he wanted to be a part of Dada—the “anti-art movement” to this end he became friends with Marcel Duchamps, and the pair worked together on early examples of kinetic art.

In 1921, Man Ray moved to Paris, where he lived in the artists’s quarter of Montparnasse, and fell in love with the famous model, singer, budding actress and well-known Bohemian Kiki de Montparnasse (aka Alice Prin). Kiki became Man Ray’s lover and muse, who he began to photograph, which in turn led him to his first experiment as filmmaker Le Retour à la Raison in 1923. 

Man Ray aligned himself with the Cinéma pur movement, which focussed on taking film away from narrative and plot and returning it to movement and image. Its proponents were René Clair, Fernand Léger, Hans Richter and Viking Eggeling, amongst others, and their short films were the beginnings of what was to become “Art Cinema.”

Adhering to Cinéma pur‘s loose manifesto, Man Ray’s early films, Le Retour à la Raison (Return to Reason) in 1923 and Emak-Bakia (Leave me alone) in 1926, focussed on creating startling textural patterns through the representation of objects within rhythmical loops. The experimentation of Le Retour à la Raison was repeated and developed in Emak-Bakia, and many of the techniques Man Ray developed (double exposure, Rayographs and soft focus) were later co-opted by animators and filmmakers during the 1940s to 1960s.

‘Le Retour à la Raison’ (‘Return to Reason’)
More of Man Ray’s Surrealist cinema after the jump…

Posted by Paul Gallagher | Leave a comment
Lydia Lunch wants to be Louis CK’s ‘friend with benefits’

This was uploaded a couple of months ago, and how I missed it for this long I do not know, but No-Wave high priestess Lydia Lunch has posted a video openly soliciting a sexual relationship with the doughy ginger comedian Louis CK. I found it on the Vimeo page of photographer Jasmine Hurst, at which, if you’re a fan of Lunch, you should really have a look, as it also contains a recording of her Future Feminism monologue from a couple of weeks ago.

But back to the wanting to eff Louis CK (OK, specifically, she suggests jacking/jilling off in front of each other, but tomayto/tomahto)—it should be obvious that it’s a not-even-close-to-work-safe soliloquy, shot in a confessional-booth style, with lighting so blown out that Lunch looks disquietingly not unlike Jeff the Killer. Given that Lunch has been known to deploy sarcasm as a rhetorical tool from time to time, just once in a while, there might be some kind of satirical point to this, but I feel it can be enjoyed more fully just taken at face value. The balls are in your court, Louis.

Previously on Dangerous Minds
Future Feminism: a social cultural and political vision for a feminine utopia
Dangerous women: Lydia Lunch interviews Admiral Grey of Cellular Chaos

Posted by Ron Kretsch | Leave a comment
‘City of the Dead’: The graveyard slum of Bab el Nasr cemetery in Cairo
07:35 am



Perhaps the most interesting aspect of Tamara Abdul Hadi‘s photography of the Bab il Nasr cemetery in Cairo, Egypt is seeing the (relative) habitability of what is literally a slum in a graveyard. The impromptu urban housing of the very poor tends to evoke images of crowded favelas, Calcutta in 1969 or even a US tent city, but many photos of Bab il Nasr look remarkably clean, quaint, and established.  Living conditions actually vary widely—plumbing and electricity exist in some homes, but these basic amenities are hardly ubiquitous.

Still, many residents have made remarkable comfort and safety from very little, likely owing to the both the duration of settlement and the fact that inhabitants are members of the larger community. From Hadi’s website:

The cemetery of Bab il Nasr in Cairo has been home to hundreds of families living among their deceased ancestors for the past 60 years. This sprawling cemetery is located in central Cairo, near the Imam Hussein Mosque. ‘This is a cemetery of the living’, says Mohammed Abdel Lateef. He lives with 9 other family members in their family’s section of the graveyard. Mohammed, in his thirties, and his siblings, Hussien, Ahmed and Ahlam, were born here.

‘This has been my home since 1966’ says Haj Abdel Lateef, Mohammed’s father, and the family’s patriarch. He and his wife Atiyat have raised 5 children here. They went to school’s nearby, work in the area, and now have children of their own.

It’s strange to see what appears to be a thriving multi-generational community in a graveyard, but the Lateef’s situation is hardly unheard of in Cairo. Between Bab el Nasr and four other cemeteries, over 500,000 Egyptians make up “The City of the Dead” slum.









Via Feature Shoot

Posted by Amber Frost | Leave a comment
NSFW boobs and butts embroidery is strictly adults-only
07:10 am


Sally Hewett

Rising Moons
Sally Hewett’s embroidery specializes in the four B’s—boobs, butt, boners, and bagina, and it has resulted in an intriguing and sometimes troubling body of work that has gotten the attention of the people at Saatchi Art, where her works run as high as $800 a pop.

Here’s Hewett’s high-minded description of the meaning of her artworks, although I think we all know that the real reason is that dicks and tits and butts are awesome and hilarious:

Men and women almost ritualistically shave and remove hair from their bodies – beards, underarm hair, pubic hair, leg hair etc, whereas other hair – hair on the head, eyebrows, eyelashes – are valued and encouraged to flourish. But there is other hair which not everyone has. Sometimes this special hair seems to be reason to feel ashamed. A large number of women and men submit their bodies to extraordinary procedures in the name of convention or beauty – liposuction, implants, scarification, surgery, laser treatment, electrolysis etc.

There’s a lot more of Hewett’s works on her website. Hewett is a graduate of the Kent Institute of Art and Design, where her dissertation focused, perhaps predictably, on “Hair and Body Detritus in Art.”

The degree to which Hewett’s work stands out is worthy of note—it’s difficult to find analogues for her work. If you look up 2010’s The Subversive Stitch by Rozsika Parker, what you’ll get is a carefully considered academic treatment of embroidery and femininity—not exactly the same thing. And Diana Grygo’s ebook Extreme Bead Embroidery isn’t half as exciting as it sounds.

Without further ado, and I have to tell you, it feels like I’ve been waiting all my life to write these words, the following embroidery is NSFW.
See Hewett’s marvelous works of embroidery after the jump…...

Posted by Martin Schneider | Leave a comment
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