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Kate Moss models David Bowie’s outfits
05.22.2018
01:15 pm
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Style homages to David Bowie tend to be a dicey affair, if only because Bowie himself was such a master at adopting new visual looks for himself. Bowie always seemed to follow his own radar on such matters, and his particular genius lay in concealing the effort to such a considerable extent. Attempts to mimic the same vibe necessarily come off looking labored. Having said that, when you’ve got a top model and a man who photographed one of Bowie’s own album covers involved, your chances of success are better, but even then, not assured.

Obviously, 1973 was a huge year for Bowie as an authentic groundbreaker in fashion. He spent the first half of the year touring the Ziggy Stardust material, he released Aladdin Sane—in the same stroke introducing his lightning bolt face to the world, probably his most enduring stylistic element—as well as Pinups. It was also the year he reached out to Kansai Yamamoto, who crafted some of Bowie’s most bizarre and memorable outfits, most notably the “‘Tokyo Pop’ vinyl bodysuit” and the “Asymmetric knitted bodysuit.”
 

David Bowie and Kansai Yamamoto, 1973
 
In 2003 the fashion magazine Vogue got ahold of some of Bowie’s most iconic outfits and—with Bowie’s blessing—enlisted photographer Nick Knight, the man responsible for the cover shot on Bowie’s 1993 album Black Tie White Noise, and noted supermodel Kate Moss for the assignment.

In 2016 Knight reminisced about the gig:
 

I was delighted to do it. [Moss] was the exact same size as he was, she fitted his clothes really well—more than just in terms of size. Some models would just not look right in them, you can’t imagine putting some of the clothes on Linda Evangelista or Nadja Auermann or whoever would have been on the scene at the time. So Kate had both the attitude and the physical side of it which made her perfect for it and she loved it, she was incredibly good. Her talent is bringing out the narrative that’s in the piece of clothing—that’s why she’s such a good model. She can put on that pale blue suit and suddenly bring out the same narrative that Bowie would have brought out when he wore it.

 
After the jump, Moss-as-Bowie….......
 

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Posted by Martin Schneider
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05.22.2018
01:15 pm
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Sodomy, sake, murderous monsters & sketches straight from Hell: The art of Kawanabe Kyōsai
05.22.2018
09:14 am
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“School for Spooks” by Kawanabe Kyōsai 1864. A larger version can be seen here.

 
Born 1831 in Koga, Japan, artist Kawanabe Kyōsai (sometimes noted as Kawanabe Gyosai) had the distinction of being a highly influential artist during both the Edo period (1603-1867) and the Meiji period (1868-1912). Another distinction Kyōsai earned during his career was being known as “the demon of painting” most likely a nod to the volume and diversity of work Kyōsai produced which was admired by influential creatives not only in Japan but in France and the UK while he was active. His work during the Meiji period was known for its infusion of politics and satire as well as his use of caricature which got him in trouble with the authorities. What exactly ticked the cops off is a bit murky. Some cite following a night of pounding sake with his fellow artists and writers, Kyōsai was arrested for creating works which were critical of Japanese political figures and the police. One of Kyōsai’s paintings “Instructions for Drinking Parties” (1870) has also been named as a culprit in this caper as it was suspected of portraying Westerners and Japanese engaged in acts of “sodomy” and sent him to the slammer. Kyōsai spent three months in jail and received 50 lashes just for creating art.

As far as Kyōsai’s early life, there are a couple of different historical accounts regarding the artist’s father. Some sources indicate that Kyōsai was the “son of a samurai” while others note his father was a rice merchant in Koga. What is not in dispute is that Kyōsai’s father noticed his son’s talent at the tender age of three before enrolling the child in formal art training at the Kanō school at the age of six or seven, later moving on to the Surugadai branch of the Kano School. During this time in Kyōsai’s young life, it has been documented that he traveled down to a river and pulled out a human head (noted in the book Yurei: The Japanese Ghost), which he proceeded to use as a model of sorts before being discovered and told by his family to toss it back where he found it. At the age of 21, Kyōsai’s work was already legendary, as was his unhinged behavior and epic consumption of sake. Allegedly Kyōsai would have 1.8 liters of sake delivered to his house every morning, often downing three or so bottles before noon. Perhaps this bit of history regarding Kyōsai might make you wonder how the fuck does one paint with the deft and precision of a master while getting bombed on rice wine? Here’s more from a friend of Kyōsai, Japanese journalist and writer Kanagaki Robun on Kyōsai’s “creative process:”

“At about 11 o’clock in the morning on 30 June 1880, the renowned Japanese painter Kawanabe Kyōsai started work on his great curtain for the Shintomi theatre. It was to be a version of the classic subject the One Hundred Demons, and as Kyōsai wielded his huge painting broom, their faces began to take shape. But there was something different about them. These were not the elegant forms of the Ukiyo-e painters. They were wild-eyed, manic creatures who moved across the picture in a frenzy of diabolical abomination. This was Kyōsai “crazy painting.”

Perhaps it was the booze which brought the best out of Kyōsai; it was also likely instrumental in elevating the artist’s more ribald works, including one you have probably seen before—his bizarre “Fart Battle” (1867) which was a form of political protest meant to address the encroachment of Western influence in Japan and its impacts on Japanese customs and lifestyles. This was a theme/sentiment he incorporated into his art for the majority of his long career. I’ve posted images of Kyōsai’s work below which include his famous series Sketches of Hell commissioned in the 1870s by surgeon and Japanese art collector William Anderson. Much of what follows is NSFW.
 

A vision painted recalling the severed head Kyōsai fished out of a river as a child.
 

“A Comic Picture” 1864.
 
More Kawanabe Kyōsai after the jump…

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Posted by Cherrybomb
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05.22.2018
09:14 am
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When nature calls: Pay a visit to the bathroom full of living spiders
05.22.2018
09:00 am
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If you have a fear of spiders, cave critters, creepy-crawlies, or maybe even restrooms, then, I guess this one’s not for you.

This could be Peter Parker’s bathroom. Or maybe Arachne’s. Or possibly the john of one of those half-human-half-arachnid kinda creatures born out some nuclear catastrophe. I suppose most people are just shaking their heads right now and saying “Uh-uh. No way am I going to drop a deuce anywhere near these eight-legged freaks in case they crawl up my butt.” I guess we can agree this is an unusual bathroom,

These photographs first appeared on Facebook post headed “Such a cool bathroom idea!!!” As you might surmise, this was on a page for those with a liking for insects, bugs, and spiders. The bathroom is (apparently) functional although it has been decked out to house several whip spiders or tailless whip scorpions—or amblypygi which is “an ancient order of arachnid chelicerate arthropods.” These amblypygi have eight legs but only use six for walking. The front two are used as “antennae-like feelers, with many fine segments giving the appearance of a ‘whip’.” They have pincer-like chelicerae which are used to hold and grind prey before digestion. They have eight eyes, are non-venomous to humans, and don’t weave webs. Some of you may recall seeing one of these critters on Ron Weasley’s head in Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire. They’re quite shy and harmless though maybe not the most comforting of things to find when, er, “spending a penny.”
 
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More toilet critters, after the jump…
 

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Posted by Paul Gallagher
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05.22.2018
09:00 am
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Dinosaur Jr. brings its ear-splitting jams to daytime’s ‘The Jenny Jones Show,’ 1997
05.21.2018
02:20 pm
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Dinosaur Jr. persisted for eight years and four studio albums after the departure of Lou Barlow in 1989. In the spring of 1997 the band released Hand It Over and spent much of the year touring North America, Europe, Japan, and Australia. On November 6, 1997, Dinosaur Jr. played Tramps in New York City, and while they were in town they taped an appearance on The Jenny Jones Show. A few days later the band would play its final show in its original iteration at the Middle East in Boston, not far from J. Mascis’ hometown of Amherst, Massachusetts.

I can’t say I ever watched it, but all available evidence suggests that The Jenny Jones Show was a very weird venue for a Dinosaur Jr. appearance. The show’s closest cousins are the scandalous daytime programs hosted by the likes of Sally Jessy Raphael, Jerry Springer, and Maury Povich, none of which, I am pretty sure, ever chose to invite Throwing Muses or Redd Kross on to perform a rousing musical number. But Jenny Jones did like to have musical artists perform on occasion, although the show’s emphasis was squarely on what is euphemistically called “urban music”—noted guests include Usher, Ludacris, Nelly, and Three Six Mafia.

Like the competition, The Jenny Jones Show loved to rile up its audience with shows involving strippers, feuding neighbors, paternity tests, “out-of-control teens,” celebrity impersonators, talent contests, and so on. A famous 1995 program on “Same Sex Secret Crushes” actually led to a murder after Scott Amedure’s on-air confession that he had a crush on Jonathan Schmitz. Three days later, Schmitz killed Amedure with a shotgun, leading The Jenny Jones Show to cancel the airing of the episode.

Aside from that, The Jenny Jones Show was mainly known for humorous rhyming show titles, such as “I Don’t Mean to Be a Pest, But You Need to Cover Up That Chest!,” “I Flash My Body ‘Cuz I’m the Next ‘Girls Gone Wild’ Hottie!,” and “You Said I Was a Weasel, But Baby Now My Body’s All Diesel!”

The Dinosaur Jr. lineup at this point was J. Mascis, Mike Johnson, and George Berz. The two songs performed on the daytime program were “Never Bought It,” off of Hand It Over, and “Out There,” off of 1993’s Where You Been (Jones calls it “Outta There”).
 
“Out There”:

 
Watch the performance of “Never Bought It” after the jump…

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Posted by Martin Schneider
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05.21.2018
02:20 pm
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‘Ralf And Florian’: Kraftwerk, the sitcom
05.21.2018
09:00 am
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Whenever I think of Kraftwerk’s Ralf Hütter and Florian Schneider my mind immediately turns to comedy, right? Yours, too? The techy Teutonic twosome are a barrel of laughs. Like the early 80s American TV sitcom Bosom Buddies crossed with “Sprockets.” 
 

 

Just discovered in a Dusseldorf car boot sale is this rare pilot for the uncommissioned Kraftwerk sitcom, “Ralf and Florian.”

Shame it never made it, as Ralf Hutter has great comic timing and could have been the next Alf Garnett.

This is perhaps the funniest unfunny thing you’ll see all day.
 

Posted by Richard Metzger
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05.21.2018
09:00 am
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The fierce funk rock of Mother’s Finest, ‘the most dangerous opening band in rock’
05.18.2018
09:12 am
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Atlanta, Georgia funk legends, Mother’s Finest.
 
So imagine this; you are one of, let’s say, nine-thousand or so fans who came to see Black Sabbath at the International Amphitheater on November 25th, 1976 in Chicago. Perhaps like some die-hard Sabbath fans, you weren’t super-jazzed with the band’s seventh album Technical Ecstasy, but like any devout headbanger, you go to the show because Black Sabbath still fucking rules. What you are not expecting is a mind-blowing performance by Sabbath’s opening act, funk ‘n’ roll outfit, Mother’s Finest. In fact, they gave the boys from Birmingham a run for their money and then some, by way of platform boots, raging guitar riffs and soul-soaked rhythms on par with Sly & the Family Stone. Hot damn.

Mother’s Finest had just released a self-titled album on Epic containing the single “Niggizz Can’t Sang Rock & Roll,” which the band had reworked from a single they recorded in 1972, “It’s What You Do With What You Got.” The album did well enough to get them the same bill as huge international acts like Sabbath, AC/DC and The Who, with performances so powerful they rivaled the headliners—earning them the title of “most dangerous opening band in rock.” The band’s second album, Another Mother Further featured a more amped-up rock sound which included lifted licks from none other than the king of riffs himself, Led Zeppelin guitarist Jimmy Page. Page’s guitar work on 1975’s “Custard Pie” was distinctly replicated by Mother’s Finest guitarist Gary Moore (not to be confused with Irish guitar god Gary Moore), on the band’s cover of The Miracles’ 1963 song, “Mickey’s Monkey.” Rock historians have often pondered why Zeppelin never sued the band for siphoning Page’s unmistakeable jams, though this also reminds one of Zeppelin’s long track record when it comes to ripping-off their musical predecessors.

At this point, I’d like to jaw a bit about Mother’s Finest’s vocalist, Joyce Kennedy—the funky fireball still fronting the act to this day. While she was in elementary school, Kennedy and her mother moved to the musical hotbed of Chicago in 1955. Chicago record label Chess was a huge champion of musicians like Muddy Waters, Howlin’ Wolf and Willie Dixon. Chess’ success during the 50s and 60s would help pave the way for future superstars from the city like Curtis Mayfield, Chicago, and Rufus and Chaka Khan (who Kennedy would be compared to during her own career). So it should be no surprise that the young Kennedy started singing shortly after her arrival and even had a couple of minor local hits in her teens. After meeting another local vocalist, Glenn Murdock, the pair would start performing as a duo on stage and in real life after getting married. In 1975, Mother’s Finest was born and their timing could not have been better as they were surrounded by other stereotype-smashing diverse groups like War, and Brooklyn funk-rockers Mandrill.

Much more Mother’s Finest, after the jump…

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Posted by Cherrybomb
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05.18.2018
09:12 am
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Trevor Billmuss: The psych-folk singer who released one delightfully strange LP and then vanished
05.18.2018
08:57 am
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Family Apology
 
When discussing rarely heard rock artists, the “enigma” word has certainly been overused, but British singer-songwriter Trevor Billmuss is truly a mysterious figure. After an album of his tunes was released—and failed to sell—Billmuss vanished. The LP, Family Apology, is now quite obscure. It’s also a stellar example of orchestrated psych-folk, and is worthy of wider exposure.

In September 1970, Family Apology was issued by the UK label, Charisma Records. A single consisting of two songs from the LP also came out at the time. The album was produced by John Anthony (Roxy Music, Van der Graaf Generator, Queen). Anthony was an in-house producer at Charisma, a label that primarily released prog rock records.

Billmuss wrote the thirteen tracks that make up the Family Apology LP. The material is very British, with ornate orchestration and the occasional acoustic guitar. To my ears, he sounds like a cross between Donovan’s flowery acid folk, and the surreal, darkly whimsical work of acid casualty, Syd Barrett. Many of Billmuss’s compositions concern the universal themes of love and heartbreak, but he’ll throw in wonderfully head-scratching lines like, “the crisis of decision ‘bout your nephew’s circumcision was tragic relief” (“September”). The old timey arrangement and British humor heard on the cutting break-up song, “Whoops Amour!,” brings to mind the Bonzo Dog Doo-Dah Band, and I can totally imagine a young Robyn Hitchcock covering “The Fishing Song,” which includes the lyric, “flippy flappy fishy in the bathroom.” In album opener, “The Ground Song,” Billmuss sings about class, the desire to escape a family so dysfunctional that he’s “dying to do my famous little disappearing act,” and the randomness of existence. The surreal poetry of the first verse will later turn into a rousing refrain.

The ground is in my hand and my hand is in my elbow
And my elbow is in my arm and my arm is in my shoulder
And my shoulder is in my chest and my chest is in my carcass
And my carcass is on my legs which are standing on the ground

Neither Family Apology nor the 45 charted. It seems that a combination of factors contributed to Billmuss’s lack of success: Charisma was chiefly a prog rock label, and probably didn’t know what to do with Billmuss; as great as the LP is, the time for this sort of music had essentially passed.

Wrong place, wrong time.
 
Continues after the jump…

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Posted by Bart Bealmear
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05.18.2018
08:57 am
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When Johnny Thunders endorsed Jesse Jackson’s presidential bid in song
05.18.2018
08:51 am
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Let it be said that I had this, at least, in common with Johnny Thunders: we both supported Jesse Jackson’s candidacy in 1988. I was just starting the fourth grade, and Johnny was getting ready to graduate from the planet Earth, but we were both willing to forgive Jackson’s offensive characterization of NYC as “Hymietown” and his prudish condemnations of “sex-rock.”

This video of Thunders’ impassioned plea to the American soul comes from September 4, 1988, the last day of the Hotpoint festival in Lausanne, Switzerland. The DNC had come and gone, with Bill Clinton’s windy nomination and Michael Dukakis’ narcotizing acceptance speech. No matter: Johnny Thunders still liked Jackson’s chances, and if he was discouraged by Dukakis’ nomination or Bush’s subsequent election, he gave no sign. He kept “Glory, Glory” in the set in 1989, and when he entered the studio in 1990, Thunders was still stumping for the Rev.

Here, weeks before the first broadcast of the Willie Horton ad, Johnny Thunders sounds like a schoolboy telling the Swiss festival crowd why he’s for Jesse Jackson. Then he “takes them to church”:

Okay! Well, I’m from America, and we’re having a presidental—presidential election. And I think, uh, the only person that I think is worthy of being a president of America is Jesse.

Oh, Jesse!

Oh, Jesse, Jesse Jackson!

Ooh, Jesse, Jesse, Jesse! etc.

More after the jump…

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Posted by Oliver Hall
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05.18.2018
08:51 am
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This pizza is actually a cake
05.17.2018
10:57 am
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I wish I’d paid more attention in religious ed. class as I’m sure some ancient dude in the Bible said something about one of the signs of the End of Days was the turning of pizza into cake. I could be wrong but along with the prophecies of plagues of locusts, autotune ruining music, and a belligerent orange cartoon character in the White House, I guess it seems about right.

So, behold, ye non-believers, the Pizza Cake.

This savory-looking confection is the tasty handiwork of Natalie and Dave Sideserf of Sideserf Cakes from Austin, Texas. You may have seen this couple on TV making their very fancy cake designs featuring the likes of decapitated heads or Ninja Turtles or rainbow-farting unicorns. Or possibly you’ve seen some of their fine work on DM. Now this talented couple may have fulfilled some ancient prophecy by creating the Pizza Cake.

If you want to know how to make it then follow the instructions in the video below. Suffice to say, it involves an oblong slice of sponge, some orange-colored butter icing, some more white icing, some food dyes, and a lot of patience to create and paint the pepperoni and tomato sauce (which is actually jam and cake crumbs) topping. The end result will certainly satisfy those who can’t get enough pizza or cake in their lives.
 

 
H/T Geekologie.
 

Posted by Paul Gallagher
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05.17.2018
10:57 am
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Ghouls, H.P. Lovecraft & beyond the beyond: The deeply creepy creations of artist John Holmes
05.17.2018
10:49 am
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A painting by British artist John Holmes.
 
From the time he held his first solo art exhibition in 1961, the art of British painter and illustrator John Holmes has expanded the minds of his fans with his imaginative take on monsters and other makers of mayhem. After hustling his craft hard in the early 60s, a few years later Holmes found himself busy working almost non-stop creating artwork for all kinds of publications including Playboy and UK women’s magazine, Nova. Later, Holmes would hook up with the art director for British publishing company Granada Books, and his ghoulish illustrations would be used widely on titles from authors such as H.P. Lovecraft, Samuel Beckett, Thomas Pynchon and perhaps most famously on the cover of the 1970 edition of Germaine Greer’s book, The Female Eunuch. Holmes’ floating female torso for Greer’s book was preceded by his disquieting work featured on the album cover, gatefold and back of Ceremony: An Electronic Mass—the collaboration of prog rock band Spooky Tooth and French electro-producer Pierre Henry .

Initially, Holmes’ work was much more abstract—a stark contrast to his strangely realistic work which would make him famous. His art was also widely used for the popular series The Fontana Book of Great Horror Stories—and if you were a child of the late 60s, 70s or even the early 80s, I’m sure you will recognize at least one of Holmes’ eerie, minimalistic paintings in this post. Much of what follows is NSFW.
 

Holmes’ artwork which appeared on the cover of an edition of H.P. Lovecraft’s ‘The Tomb (and other stories).’
 

The cover of Thomas Pynchon’s ‘Gravity’s Rainbow.’
 

Holmes’ cover for the 1973 book by Poul Anderson, ‘Beyond the Beyond.’
 
More after the jump…

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Posted by Cherrybomb
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05.17.2018
10:49 am
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