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Guided By Voices have broken up
03:25 pm


Guided By Voices

Fans of that great Dayton, OH indie band Guided By Voices have been greeted with a rather startling and not terribly informative goodbye on the band’s tour date page:

Guided By Voices has come to an end. With 4 years of great shows and six killer albums, it was a hell of a comeback run. The remaining shows in the next two months are unfortunately canceled. Our sincere apologies to those that have purchased tickets and made travel plans. Thanks to everyone who has supported GBV.

The band’s classic lineup from the 1993-‘96 era reunited in 2010, and immediately set about becoming as insanely prolific as they were the first time around. 2014 alone saw two full length releases, Motivational Jumpsuit and Cool Planet. The band’s fall tour would have kicked off in Portland, OR next week. Given the number of incarnations the band has been through, though, it hardly seems out of the question that one of the 1998-2005 lineups could be resurrected if Doug Gillard could be tempted away from Nada Surf.

Here’s one of the band’s last songs (unless/until singer Robert Pollard gets a wild hair up his ass to do it again…), “Planet Score” from Motivational Jumpsuit.

Posted by Ron Kretsch | Discussion
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‘The Pharmacy’: A Nick Cave-themed show with Bad Seed Jim Sclavunos & ‘20,000 Days on Earth’

Gregg Foreman’s radio program The Pharmacy is a music / talk show playing heavy soul, raw funk, 60′s psych, girl groups, Krautrock. French yé-yé, Hammond organ rituals, post-punk transmissions and “ghost on the highway” testimonials and interviews with the most interesting artists and music makers of our times…

It’s a Nick Cave-themed episode this time with Bad Seeds drummer Jim Sclavunos and 20,000 Days on Earth directors Iain Forsyth and Jane Pollard.

Sclavunos has played with The Cramps, Sonic Youth, and Lydia Lunch and he learned studio production from Big Star’s Alex Chilton. He’s also got a great story about Lux Interior meeting Iggy Pop.

Iain Forsyth & Jane Pollard discuss the making of 20,000 days on Earth and working behind-the-scenes with Nick Cave, PJ Harvey, Blixa Bargeld, Ray Winstone and Kylie Minogue.

Mr. Pharmacy is a musician and DJ who has played for the likes of Pink Mountaintops, The Delta 72, The Black Ryder, The Meek and more. Since 2012 Gregg Foreman has been the musical director of Cat Power’s band. He started dj’ing 60s Soul and Mod 45’s in 1995 and has spun around the world. Gregg currently lives in Los Angeles, CA and divides his time between playing live music, producing records and dj’ing various clubs and parties from LA to Australia.


Depth Charge Ethel - Grinderman
Soupy - Maggie Thrett
Intro 1/ El-Die-Bie! - Rx / Dave Pike Set
Jim Sclavunos Part One
Loose - The Stooges
Taking Too Long - The Wipers
Shadazz - Suicide
Intro 2 / Cavern -  Rx / Liquid Liquid
Jim Sclavunos Part Two
Diddy Wah Diddy - 8-Eyed Spy
I Can’t Stand Myself - James Chance and the Contortions
Sunshine of Your Love - Spanky Wilson
Intro 3 / Jesus - Rx / The Gospel Surfers
20,000 Days on Earth - Iain and Jane Part One
A Dead Song - The Birthday Party
Neat Neat Neat - The Damned
My Tulpa (Rx Edit)  - Magazine
Intro 4 / The Noose - Rx / The Executioners
20,000 Days on Earth - Iain and Jane Part Two
The Witness Song (Excerpt) - Nick Cave and the Bad Seeds
Jim Sclavunos Conclusion
Miniskirt Blues - The Cramps feat . Iggy Pop
Black Train - The Gun Club
Nobody’s City - Jeffrey Lee Pierce Project / Iggy Pop with Nick Cave (feat. Thurston Moore)
Intro 5 / GreyHound - Rx / The Nightmares
Buddy - Snapper
Damaged - Primal Scream

You can download the show in its entirety here.
Below, behind-the-scenes of 20,000 Days on Earth:

Posted by Tara McGinley | Discussion
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The return of the f*ckin’ Trailer Park Boys
11:32 am


Trailer Park Boys

If you haven’t heard yet, Canadian cult comedy television heros The Trailer Park Boys have returned… again. And this time it looks like they’re here to stay for a while.

That’s right, ten new episodes of Canada’s finest export (if you don’t count Molson’s Golden, Neil Young, Pamela Anderson, Joni Mitchell, Leonard Cohen, Rush, Jessica Paré...). The Trailer Park Boys can now be seen in every territory within Netflix’s reach. Best of all, there’s a season beyond this one still to come in 2015. Supposedly their 2009 theatrical film Countdown to Liquor Day was meant to be their swan song, but John Paul Tremblay, Robb Wells and Mike Smith (Julian, Ricky and Bubbles) purchased the rights from the original producers. I hope they do this forever. It’s one of those things that could be sustained indefinitely.

If you haven’t heard of The Trailer Park Boys, in one sense, lucky you, because you now get to binge watch one of the greatest television comedies ever made, plus two standalone specials, two feature films and a live performance. They pump this stuff into your home like gas or electricity or… hash oil. What excuse do you have not to partake?

As I wrote on this blog last year:

One of my favorite things—literally one of my very, very favorite things in life—is the absolutely genius Canadian comedy series, The Trailer Park Boys.

It’s a masterpiece. By the time I discovered the show—obviously 99% of Canadian television never makes it south—it had already reached the end of its seven series run on the Showcase network in 2007. My wife and I “binge-watched” the entire thing in like two weeks, watching as many as five of them in a row some nights. It was comedy crack, we couldn’t get enough.

When we got to the last one, I told her that I felt like I wanted to weep. She admitted to feeling the same way. It was like we’d lost old friends. It massively sucked not to have any more episodes of The Trailer Park Boys.

Things spiraled out of control from there…

Seriously, though, a year later at about 6pm on a night that we were having a dinner party, a friend of mine wrote to ask if I’d heard about “Say Goodnight to the Bad Guys,” the Trailer Park Boys’ 2008 Christmas special. We couldn’t scoot our guests’ asses out the door fast enough!

When the new series opens, Ricky has “retired” with an enormous stash of weed hidden in the walls of his trailer and has stopped using money entirely, instead buying everything with pressed “hash coins” (which are accepted without comment by everyone). Julian has opened a strip club inside his trailer and Bubbles is about to launch his “Shed and Breakfast” business for people who are traveling with their cats (free pancakes!). White rapper J-Roc has his own brand of flavored vodka (which he describes as “the birth of Christ”). Barb, the owner of the Sunnyvale trailer park has caught her soon to be ex-husband Sam with a man and demands a divorce from this “bisexual caveman” who decides he’s going to screw her out of the Sunnyvale property which he plans to sell at a huge profit to real estate developers. The only thing standing in the way of his plan is Barb’s first bisexual ex-husband, the perpetually-soused retiring park supervisor Jim Lahey (played by the great John Dunsworth, easily THE BEST COMIC DRUNK OF ALL TIME) who owns the deciding 1% of the Sunnyvale stock.

Julian rallies Ricky and Bubbles to help raise enough money to save the park. Their plans involve hash oil, hookers and much more, but I won’t spoil it for you. We watched all of them in two sittings. My only complaint is that there weren’t more of them…

And speaking of the Trailer Park Boys, Swearnet: The Movie, the new theatrical release from John Paul Tremblay, Robb Wells and Mike Smith came out last weekend in select cities. The reviews were mostly terrible, but if you read between the lines, it seems like it would be a riot:

Posted by Richard Metzger | Discussion
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‘Man of 10,000 Sound Effects’ Michael Winslow sings Led Zeppelin’s ‘Whole Lotta Love’
09:56 am


Led Zeppelin
Michael Winslow

I posted this video of Michael Winslow on Norway’s TV show Senkveld med Thomas og Harald (“Late Night with Thomas and Harold”) singing Led Zeppelin’s “Whole Lotta Love” back in 2011. For whatever reason the video is starting to make the rounds again on the Internet today and I thought it was time for a revisit here, too. It’s that good! 

If you’ve never seen this one before, it’s pretty incredible to watch what Winslow can do with his voice. Known as the “Man of 10,000 Sound Effects,” I’d say he pretty much nails it.

via Open Culture

Posted by Tara McGinley | Discussion
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Get hip to the Vout-O-Reenee of Slim Gaillard’s musical genius
08:39 am


Slim Gaillard

Fortunately, I was never blessed with any musical talent. At junior school I was classed as a “non-singer,” which thankfully meant I avoided having to regale parents with “The Skye Boat Song” and “Mairi’s Wedding” at end of term concerts. When it came to learning the recorder, I never progressed further than making weird whistling noises reminiscent of The Clangers. Undeterred, my parents, for some inexplicable reason, continued with their misguided belief I was a budding John Denver and bought me a guitar. I’ll admit I managed a chord or two, just enough to pen such songs as “I Don’t Wanna Go To School,” “I Don’t Wanna Go To Bed” and “I Don’t Wanna Stop Watching Cartoons,” all which I blame on The Ramones. But I knew this idyll could not last, which I discovered soon enough when forced to tune my guitar. I was tone deaf and could not differentiate E from B or A from G# Minor. My musical career was over, any dreams of pop stardom were cast out along with my 28-inch flares. Deep down, I was grateful, now I could spend my time reading books and listening to people who really had musical talent.

Like Slim Gaillard who was thankfully blessed with an inordinate amount of musical talent, sophistication and charm. Gaillard was an American jazz singer, songwriter, guitarist, pianist, and vibraphonist, a tall handsome man, with these beautiful elongated fingers with which he played the piano—palms up.

Slim plays “Cement Mixer (Putti Putti)”
Slim wrote and performed such unforgettable songs as “Flat Foot Floogie (with a Floy Floy),” “Dunkin’ Bagels,” “Cement Mixer (Putti Putti),” “Opera In Vout (Groove Juice Special),” “Yep-Roc-Heresay” and “Matzo Balls.” The titles were exotic, comedic and inspired an imaginary world of smiling hepcats in flash suits, jiving on crowded smoky dance floors. The summer I started listening to Mr. Gaillard on crackly vinyl was synchronous as I read about him in Jack Kerouac-a-roon-ee, and saw him as part of Slim & Slam in the film Hellzapoppin’—only knowing of his appearance after the fact through Leonard Maltin’s Movie Guide.

Slim created his very own “slanguage” called “Vout” that spiced his songs and flavored Kerouac’s writing. For those who wanted to get hip-o-roon-ee, there was even a “Vout-O-Reenee Dictionary” published in the 1950s for all hepcats to learn.

It wasn’t just the language it was his infectious humor that made it impossible not smile when listening to one of Slim’s songs.  When I first heard “Dunkin’ Bagels” I thought I’d located the comedy spark that fired Spike Milligan’s and the Bonzo Dog Band’s imaginations.

‘Dunkin’ Bagels’ splash in the coffee…’
More after the jump…

Posted by Paul Gallagher | Discussion
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‘My Rules’: Glen E. Friedman book documents hardcore punk, hip hop, skaters and YOU NEED IT
07:18 am

Pop Culture

Glen E. Friedman

I don’t normally write posts and say “you must own this!” but… you’ve gotta get this! Glen E. Friedman’s new My Rules (Rizzoli) is simply stunning. A real masterpiece! I was happier than a pig in shit when I got it in the mail a few weeks ago. It was a very pleasant—and unexpected—surprise indeed. I couldn’t wait to unwrap it out of its packaging and tear through it! The book is a glorious MONSTER, with huge color photographs and amazing B&W images. Hugeness is a major factor in its favor, and the hardcover is sort of “quilted” and textured in a manner unlike any book I’ve ever owned. As an object/publication, it’s… a simply stunning presentation of a photographer’s life’s work, one of the best you’ll ever see. An event! Who is there… what ONE photographer was around as many important scenes as Friedman? Hip hop, hardcore, skaters, he was there, he was in the midst of it and with this book you really get a sense of that. It’s not just a bunch of amazing photographs, the selection becomes a sort of autobiography of the person who documented all of these moments: He was there.

Darren “Buffy” Robinson - Fat Boys - 1985 - Venice Beach, ©Glen E. Friedman
Glen’s work splendidly captures historic moments in time. Moments of 70s skate culture, punk, post punk, hardcore, 80s hip hop and early-90s indie rock. Underground cultures that will never happen again (or at least not as cool as they were then!). I have to admit though, I got really nostalgic and almost a bit weepy while looking at these photographs. They reminded me of being young again. My youth. Something I ain’t ever going to get back. They drummed up memories of me hanging out with my childhood friends (some sadly deceased now) just kicking it in my parents’ basement played records or driving around in my first boyfriend’s pick-up truck blasting Minor Threat. Fun times. Good times.

I love this book for so many reasons.

The Make-Up - 1995 - New York City, ©Glen E. Friedman

Think of any iconic image of Run DMC, Black Flag, Minor Threat, Public Enemy, and Beastie Boys, or the gravity defying revolutionary skateboarding legends Tony Alva, Jay Adams, or Stacy Peralta. It is almost certain that Glen E. Friedman was the man behind the camera. Since the mid-1970s as a young teenager, Friedman has been chronicling quintessential moments of underground and counterculture movements.

Glen E. Friedman’s My Rules serves as a history book for the three powerhouse countercultures—skateboarding, punk, and hip-hop. From the earliest days Friedman was present to capture the pivotal and defining moments in music and street movements that were largely unknown or ignored. The energy and rebellion comes through in these famous and some never-before-seen iconic images.

Moses Padilla - 1978 - West LA, ©Glen E. Friedman

As a side note: It was extremely difficult for me to pick the images for this post. I mean, they’re all so damned wonderful! ALL of them! Here are a few choice selections from My Rules below:

Jello Biafra - 1981 - Hollywood, ©Glen E. Friedman

Flavor Flav and Chuck D. - 1987, ©Glen E. Friedman

Junk Yard Band - 1986 - Washington D.C., ©Glen E. Friedman

More after the jump…

Posted by Tara McGinley | Discussion
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‘The Diatomist’: Explore the creation of microscopic kaleidoscopic Victorian-era artforms

The Diatomist is a short documentary about Klaus Kemp, master of the Victorian art of diatom arrangement.

Diatoms are single cell algae that can be found virtually anywhere where there is standing water. Drains, ponds, bird baths, that’s where they live, invisible to the naked eye until the discovery of the microscope. For protection, the tiny organisms create a glass-like shell around themselves, almost like they are living jewels. During the Victorian era, microscopists would arrange diatoms into elaborate and kaleidoscopic patterns—think of it as a rough equivalent of building a ship in a bottle, but with some of the tiniest microorganism to be found on Earth. Their meticulous works, marrying art and science could only be viewed under a microscope.

Since he was a teenager, Mr. Kemp has devoted his career to creating stunning diatom arrangements and is acknowledged as the last great practitioner of this artform. Matthew Killip’s exquisitely beautiful short film The Diatomist showcases his incredible work.

Director’s Statement:

I’m really interested in the way people interact with the natural world (I’ve previously made a series of short documentaries for UK TV about working relationships with monkeys and apes. I’m also a huge admirer of the Victorian naturalists ... So I was very excited when I recently saw my first Diatom arrangements, by the German master JD Möller (1844 - 1907).  The arrangements really embody that beautiful combination of art and science one can find in the period, and I loved seeing the hand of man display the work of nature so beautifully. The overwhelming variety and intricacy of diatoms can’t help but recall Darwin: “endless forms most beautiful and most wonderful have been, and are being, evolved.”

I was very curious to see if anyone still practiced diatom arrangement and also to find out how it was done. I managed to track down Klaus Kemp in the UK—he’s really the only person doing this to a professional level (he’s able to make a living from a small base of collectors) - and filmed with him for one afternoon in December 2013. During the filming Klaus told me all the Victorian diatomists took their secrets to the grave, so there was no accurate information on the practice when he first started, aged sixteen. It has taken him years to be able to create these stunning microscopic slides of arranged diatoms, and although The Diatomist is a modest short film I hope it does some justice to what really is Klaus’ life’s work.


All diatom arrangements and photographs by Klaus Kemp. Soundtrack by Ryuichi Sakamoto, Bernard Herrmann and Cults Percussion Ensemble.

Matthew Killip is an English filmmaker living in New York. His documentaries have been broadcast on UK television and exhibited in festivals around the world including Sundance and True/False.

Posted by Richard Metzger | Discussion
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‘Local Grandmother Quilts Giant Penises’ (SFW)
06:19 am



Holly Stewart, aka “HollyPolyester,” manages to combine cute, funny, feminist and kitsch with her Master’s thesis “Local Grandmother Quilts Giant Penises: An exploration of the phallus as the site of female empowerment and the rightful status of the crone in contemporary society.” The Kansas City grandmother is studying Studio Art at University of Missouri-Kansas City. and she worked for a time in a sex-toy factory, removing dildos from their molds. So really, her foray into chintzy wangs was an artistic inevitability! Though Stewart enjoys the giggles, her (pink) press release manages to convey an exhibit of genitalia with remarkable dignity:

UMKC student Holly Stewart (HollyPolyester) is to present her M.A. thesis exhibition, which will feature a variety of both large and small sculptural works and installations. Utilizing craft-oriented techniques and materials such as quilting and beading, Stewart appropriates the penis as a symbol of power while contextualizing her work within “third wave” feminist theory.

They’re not just penises, people—they’re penises with artistic legitimacy (which is way more than you could say for most dicks in art.) Today is actually the last day her work will show at the UMKC Gallery, but with all the praise her phallic crafts have received, perhaps her show should be extended.

Size is one thing, but duration’s really the key!

A Mike Kelley-influenced clusterfuck?






Via Beautiful Decay

Posted by Amber Frost | Discussion
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Witness ‘Simpsons’ actor Harry Shearer’s total transformation into Richard Nixon

Between playing bassist Derek Smalls in the immortal metal spoof This is Spinal Tap and voicing dozens of characters on The Simpsons, Harry Shearer has been a key performer in two of the most oft-quoted entertainment franchises in living memory. For his latest project, however, Shearer’s the one doing the quoting. He’s re-enacting, verbatim, moments out of the presidency of the disgraced Richard M. Nixon, recasting the tragic president as a comic figure. The series, created in collaboration with Nixon scholar Stanley Kutler, is called Nixon’s the One. It already ran in the UK on Sky Arts earlier this year, and will soon be webcast weekly on YouTube’s My Damn Channel, starting on October 21st.

The scripts are taken from Nixon’s actual White House tapes—those notorious recordings that figured so heavily in the Watergate investigations that left his presidency and his legacy in utter ruins—and shot in a fly-on-the wall style that makes viewing feel like eavesdropping. A teaser was released about a week ago, in which Henry Kissinger is played by British actor Henry Goodman:

To play the former president, Shearer underwent some serious transformation—prosthetics, makeup, wig, the whole megillah, as this photo sequence attests.














Photos courtesy of Hat Trick Productions Ltd.

Terrific work, but this can’t go unsaid—is it maybe a little much? Shearer’s voice isn’t his only great gift as a performer, he has a marvelously expressive face, and it seems a shame to obscure ALL of it with latex appliqués. It strikes me that he could have made a better-than-credible Nixon just with the addition of a nose and some jowls. One possible reason for the full-face prosthetics could have been to DE-age the actor—this surprised the shit out of me when I looked it up, but Shearer is 70 years of age. Nixon, in the time period being recreated, was around 60.

About a month ago, to commemorate the 40th Anniversary of Nixon’s resignation, Shearer released a similar verbatim re-creation of the unsettlingly awkward moments leading up to Nixon’s resignation speech. I’ve included the actual historic footage for comparison. The way Nixon tries to casually goof around with the news crew makes him seem more like your embarrassing perma-bachelor uncle trying to flirt with a waitress than the leader of the free world about to abandon his career in the face of nearly unanimous public contempt. Shearer’s take on that massively uncomfortable frisson works quite well as cringe comedy.


Previously on Dangerous Minds
White House memo suggests Nixon ‘neutralize’ Johnny Cash, 1970
Wasted Richard Nixon talks, slurs his words to Ronald Reagan on the telephone, 1973
Reefer man: Did Louis Armstrong turn Richard Nixon into his drug mule?
Let Nixon play Nixon: Listen to tricky dick tickle the ivories, on a composition by Richard Nixon

Posted by Ron Kretsch | Discussion
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Watch Martin Scorsese’s bloody 1967 anti-Vietnam War short, ‘The Big Shave’
05:17 am


Martin Scorsese

Prepare yourself for a little bit of gore, but make sure you don’t miss this one. Clocking in at under six minutes long, Martin Scorsese’s 1967 experimental short, The Big Shave is an amazing little film. Set to the sentimental jazz notes of Bunny Berigan’s 1937 rendition of “I Can’t Get Started” (a Ziegfeld Follies number with Gershwin lyrics), a young man enters the bathroom for a shave, only to nonchalantly gouge at his skin with progressively violent strokes of the razor. The resulting imagery is hypnotic.

Scorsese wrote the piece in the depths of a depression when he had difficulty shaving himself, and while it’s a simple enough concept, it was written as a fairly explicit political statement. Alternately titled Viet ‘67, the film was produced as a metaphorical protest against the Vietnam War—part of a weeklong production, “The Angry Arts Against the War.” 

The subversive metaphor and captivating depiction of self-mutilation won The Big Shave Le Prix de L’Age d’Or at the 1968 Festival of Experimental Cinema in Belgium.

Via Network Awesome

Posted by Amber Frost | Discussion
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