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The Charlatans Tim Burgess on Lance Armstrong
06:09 pm

Pop Culture


The Charlatans frontman Tim Burgess on Lance Armstrong.

Can’t we give Lance Armstrong a break? I tried riding a bike once on drugs. If anything it was a lot harder. I was in a hedge within seconds.

Tim released a rather superb album Oh No I Love You at the end of last year, and is touring in February more info here.

Tim Burgess on twitter.


Posted by Paul Gallagher | Leave a comment
The ‘Hypno-Psych Voodoo Groove’ of Golden Teacher
05:41 pm



There’s just not enough analog dance music nowadays. And I don’t mean analog as in made on real instrurments. No, if you happen to stumble across a “live” dance act these days, the chances are that more effort has gone into making it sound immaculately tight than making it irresistibly funky or attractively odd.

That’s where Golden Teacher comes in, a new all-live disco-not-disco band, as influenced by Arthur Russell’s tangental looseness as by Giorgio Moroder’s synthesized precision.

Hailing from Glasgow (seemingly the home of all things musically interesting in the UK), Golden Teacher are a super group formed around the nucleus of two other acts, Silk Cut and Ultimate Thrush, who I have blogged about here before. In what is almost a scarily perfect meeting of minds, Golden Teacher has been released on Optimo Music, label of the club night Optimo (Espacio), another act I have mentioned here.

Scary, because no other band I have heard have come closer to representing the Optimo “mentality” (if such a thing exists) of playing absolutely anything as long as it gets the people up and dancing, and for seeing genre not as a boundary but something to be pushed and experimented upon.

More info on Golden Teacher from the Optimo Music website:

Golden Teacher started life as a studio collaboration between Glasgow’s noise punk trio, Ultimate Thrush and Glasgow’s all analogue house duo, Silk Cut. The results of their collaboration turned the ears of all who heard them, not least Twitch who after one listen asked if he could release the project on Optimo Music label.

Recorded live, direct to tape at Glasgow’s legendary Green Door studios with minimal overdubbing and editing, the tracks feature various associates of the band contributing vocals and additional percussion. It’s a little hard to describe Golden Teacher’s sound (always a good thing in our book) but imagine Arthur Russell’s Dinosaur L jamming with Bobby O, K Alexi Shelby, Liaisions Dangereuses, Imagination, some voodoo drummers and Sly & Robbie. It is in our opinion one of the most original and wildest records to come out of anywhere in 2013. We like to call it hypno-psych voodoo groove.

This is one for all the dance-heads who are attracted to the unusual, and all the noise-niks who just like to get down every so often.

Details on where to pick up the limited edition, silk-screened, 5-track debut 12” of Golden Teacher are here, but hurry, there are only 250 copies being pressed.

Posted by Niall O'Conghaile | Leave a comment
Hot Hot Hot!!! A make-up session with The Cure
03:46 pm




A behind-the-scenes look at a 1991 make-up session with The Cure.

And here, I thought Robert Smith just woke up that way!

Posted by Tara McGinley | Leave a comment
The Porn Identity: Is online pornography warping the minds of an entire generation of young men?
02:15 pm



Over a decade ago, I directed a piece for television about “extreme” pornography and the societal effects it would have on a generation of young men who were but a mouse-click away from “Anal Armageddon 3,” “Barnyard Fun” and midget gangbang videos. They didn’t even have to suffer through the hang-dog wanker’s ignominy of dealing with a frowning video store clerk, it was just there already, right in their very homes.

For many young men coming of age in the past decade, probably more than anything else, the Internet represents a Pandora’s Box of digital perversions that can often be quite specific. 12% of all websites are pornographic in nature and 25% of all Internet search terms are for porn. Around the time that modems got fast enough to allow for video streaming, there seemed to be a corresponding spike in how sick, twisted and violent porn could get, each fuck film auteur trying to outdo the rest of them and raising the bar little by little, one fucked-up “gonzo” scene at a time.

Surely having such violent and dehumanizing images seared onto one’s retinas at the point of orgasm, I don’t think could ever be considered a healthy thing... Certainly it might at least prove to be, well, confusing, if not far, far worse, when a generation of men are getting their sex education from the likes of Max Hardcore. One of the interviewees I talked to, Australian writer Luke Ford, said that pornography was for the soul what cigarettes are for the lungs. Author Anka Radakovich, who was also in the program, mused that it might take ten to fifteen years before the full data was in and to get back to her with the same questions then.

It’s been thirteen years now since that TV piece and “Did Porn Warp Me Forever?” a brutally honest essay about growing up with unlimited access to smut from 23-year-old Brooklyn-based writer “Isaac Abel” (not his real name for obvious reasons), I think, has some answers for us:

With a teenage sex drive only inhibited by a vague shame, I quickly fell down a “kink spiral.” After all, we’re talking about reaching climax — when the overriding thought is often just “more!” The unknown, the unseen, was sexy to me, and I pursued novelty with vigor.

I found myself rapidly desensitized to online images. If a threesome was kinky last week, then I’d need something wilder this week. To reach climax, I had to find that same toxic mix of shame and lust.

By my sophomore year in high school I felt torn. Even though I was fairly certain that most guys my age were regular porn watchers, I felt ashamed about the type of porn that I was watching (not something that even the son of psychotherapists was eager to share with friends).


These questions continued to bother me. I worried that real girls wouldn’t do it for me. So my senior year in high school, I decided to quit. Cold turkey. For five months. I actually decided not to masturbate at all, and I had few sexual encounters. It was refreshing, and I definitely became more easily turned on by “traditional” things — including the women around me.

But when I started having sex, I realized that I had far from cleansed myself, even though I had continued (and continue still) to keep up my boycott on pornography. I had trouble getting and maintaining an erection with the first three women I slept with. This didn’t feel like a small matter. It seemed like all the schoolyard jockeying ultimately came down to that moment of phallic power, and I just couldn’t do it. Was I more turned on by porn than by real women? What did that mean about my sexuality?

I starting seeing a young woman regularly, and some confluence of alcohol, weed, no condom, and the trust, comfort, and affection I felt with her allowed me to start enjoying sex — to an extent. I wouldn’t acknowledge it, but the majority of nights I had “good sex” I was intoxicated. And, what’s worse, I was fantasizing about porn during sex.

It was a dissociative, alienating, almost inhuman task to close my eyes while having sex with someone I really cared about and imagine having sex with someone else or recall a deviant video from the archives of my youth that I was ashamed of even then.

I’ve talked with other millennial men who’ve experienced this, and it’s not particularly surprising. A decade before we were having intercourse, our neural pathways associated ejaculation with an addictive, progressive perversity that demanded a superlative overstimulation — skipping from climactic scene to climactic scene so that it’s always the most novel, deviant, kinky.

You get the picture and it’s not a very pretty one.

Read more of Did Porn Warp Me Forever? (it’s excellent stuff) at AlterNet.

Posted by Richard Metzger | Leave a comment
The cleverest porn title of the year: The nominees are…
01:02 pm



The 30th annual Adult Video News Awards was held at the Hard Rock Hotel & Casino Las Vegas this past Saturday. Who knew, right? Anyway, there was an amazing category for “Clever Title of the Year.” The nominees are listed below:

Clever Title of the Year

Asphyxia Heels the World, BurningAngel/Vouyer
Brooklyn Egg Cream on the Roxxx, Seymore Butts/Pure Play
Chocolate Covered Crackers, Black Magic Pictures
Chocolate Yam Yams, Black Storm/Monarchy/Vantage
Does This Dick Make My Ass Look Big?, Vouyer Media
Look Mom, My First Black Penis, Mike Hunt/Juicy
My Wife Caught Me Assfucking Her Mother, Devil’s Film
Nice Shoes, Wanna Fuck?, Electric/Hustler
Occupy My Ass, Bobbi Starr/Evil Angel
She Plays a Mean Rusty Trombone!, Lethal Hardcore/Pulse
Show Me Your Shithole, B. Pumper/Freaky Empire
Somebody Shave Me, Zero Tolerance Entertainment
The Spit and the Speculum, Mike Adriano/Evil Angel
Subtle Fragrance of Her Private Parts, Swank/Pure Play
We Vow to Bang Black Beotches, Kelly Madison/Juicy

And the winner is – drum roll please …

Does This Dick Make My Ass Look Big?
Via Nerdcore

Posted by Tara McGinley | Leave a comment
Something rare and wonderful: Sam Cooke interviewed by Mike Douglas, 1964
10:53 am



Today is Sam Cooke’s birthday and here’s a very rare moment in which Cooke is interviewed at some length on a talk show. Once again, a great music moment from the Mike Douglas Show. The year was 1964.]

The quality is poor, but, holy shit, its Sam Cooke!

Sam sings after the jump…

Posted by Marc Campbell | Leave a comment
At the age of 19 Thomas De Quincey wrote this opium-induced revery
10:20 am



While under the influence of laudanum (tincture of opium), a young and very stoned Thomas De Quincey put pen to paper and attempted to capture the elusive moment:

In a clock-case housed in a warm chamber of a spacious English mansion (inevitably as being English, so beautifully clean, so admirably preserved, [noise there is none, dust there is none, neither moth nor worm doth corrupt] how sweet it is to lie! – If thieves break through and steal, they will not steal a mummy; or not, unless they mistake the mummy for an eight-day clock. And if fire should arise, or even if it should descend from heaven is there not a Phoenix Office, able to look either sort of fire (earthly or heavenly) in the face ... Mummy or anti-Mummy, Skeleton or Anti-Skeleton, the Phoenix soars higher above both, and flaps her victorious wings in utter defiance of all that the element of fire can accomplish—making it her boast to ride in the upper air high above all malice from earthly enemies….

Bonhams Fine Books And Manuscripts in San Francisco was offering De Quincy’s ode to O for sale but it appears to have been sold. The expected going price was between $800-1200.
Via Booktryst

Posted by Marc Campbell | Leave a comment
For Beatlemaniacs only: Profound mini-documentary on the birth of ‘Strawberry Fields Forever’
09:00 am



Although no longer an epidemic, Beatlemania, like TB, still exists; I should know, I’ve been struggling with a dose for a couple of weeks now. I’m not doing much screaming, but I am unable to listen to, read about, or even think on anything that isn’t somehow Beatle-related. (My missus has had it up to here with the goddamn Fab Four.)

The following seemingly homemade mini-documentary, on the development of “Strawberry Fields Forever,” is one of my favorite finds so far, nicely edited to give a real and rare sense of the genesis of a great work of art, from a tantalizing burst of John backstage fooling about on a melodium in 1964, through countless delicious demos and jams, to the orchestral version which, slowed down and cleverly sewn into the final mix, would help give the finished song its thrillingly queasy texture. It finishes with the famous Knole Park video. If you love the song, this is well worth twenty-six minutes of your life.

(And for the record, John, down here we’ve long since decided your tree was rather high.)

Posted by Thomas McGrath | Leave a comment
Me Start a Vanguard Party to Lead the Working Class to Revolution? You Must Be Kidding!!
08:48 am



This snarky little bit of political humor was found in Radical America, a magazine published by Students for a Democratic Society. It’s a little inside baseball, but anyone familiar with the New Left movement of U.S. politics will recognize the references to notorious infighting and pedantry.

“Me Start a Vanguard Party to Lead the Working Class to Revolution? You Must Be Kidding!!”

Over the past few years, Party Builders Associates has aided countless individuals and groups to form vanguard parties intelligently tailored to their own needs. These people are now leading creative, happy lives fighting one another. What we’ve done for others, we can do for you.

A few minutes filling out the following questionnaire may be the best investment you’ll ever make. Your answers will enable Party Builders Associates, preserving strict confidentiality, to work out a party program that is JUST RIGHT for you and your friends.

And now, here’s the questionnaire. We advise using a pencil, since these are by no means easy questions, and your party will not be able to alter the positions taken here without seriously damaging your credibility among the workers.

1) The Russian Revolution turned away from socialism in:
(a) 1917
(b) 1927
(c) 1953
(d) 1957
(e) It hasn’t yet, but my group will be the first to denounce it when it does

2) Black people are:
(a) A nation
(b) A nation of a new type
(c) A super-exploited sector of the working class
(d) Petit-bourgeois
(e) A colony
(f) Please send me more information about this controversial group

3) The main danger facing the workers’ vanguard in the present epoch is:
(a) Right opportunism
(b) “Left” sectarianism
(c) Right opportunism masking as “left” sectarianism
(d) My parents
(e) Other (please specify)

4) Rather than focus on narrow economic issues, my party will offer a cultural critique of life in advanced capitalist countries. The following are signs of capitalist decadence:
(a) Feminism
(b) Trotskyism
(c) Pornographic movies
(d) Recent price increases in pornographic movies
(e) Other (please give exact details)

5) I would like to include the following in the title of my party:
(a) Labor
(b) Workers
(c) Revolutionary
(d) Socialist
(e) Communist
(f) Vanguard
(g) Progressive
(h) October(November)
(i) United
(j) International
(k) World
(l) Movement
(m) M
(n) L
(o) All of the above

Let’s see, who splintered from Students from a Democratic Society?  The Weather Underground, Progressive Labor (Maoists), The Revolutionary Youth Movement. The other Maoists/ Communist Party Marxist-Leninists…


Posted by Amber Frost | Leave a comment
1960s Narcotics & Dangerous Drugs Identification Kit
08:43 am



I doubt these displays ever convinced any kids to abstain from drugs (come on, who just walks around with a poppy?), but they’re sort of beautiful in a Joseph Cornell meets Hunter S. Thomspon kind of way. I’d put one on my wall, anyways.
More photos after the jump…

Posted by Amber Frost | Leave a comment
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