Skip to main content

that old black magic

in case you were wondering [they weren't -ed.] why world wide wednesdays happened on thursday this week, you can lay the blame solely on the sweet sounds of sweden, specifically those of the sadly defunct cold meat industry record label.

the show was part of a tour that continues to unfold from now until the 29th of the month and if there is any way you can find your way to one of the shows, i can't recommend it enough. seeing bands i've admired in the past has been an uneven experience for me. there were some shows that were so bad that they've made me question why i ever liked the act to begin with, while others have left me marveling at how old masters continue to possess a spark that's absent from so many younger acts. 

here's a little photo tour of my evening...
  


ok, so the first thing is that when we left to go to the show, we couldn't get to the metro because the street was on fire. it was hard to get a good shot because the air was so hazy that everything distorted, so this is just an impression of what it looked like. 

right here should be a picture of menace ruine, who stepped in at the dire last minute when one of the opening acts couldn't make it. very short, sweet set and caught me out, because i didn't get to take a picture. i just wanted to mention it, because performing is stressful for a band and opening a show with basically no notice whatsoever is pretty damn cool. 


lussuria, an artist about whom i knew little, but i did check out his latest release on hospital productions and am curious to hear more.


another lussuria. i played with the colours a bit to make it look more like it did in person than in the unprocessed photo above.


deutsch nepal, the only one of the artists who i'd seen before, was actually better than when i initially saw him in 2007, remaining resolutely difficult to define, unexpected and enchanting in the most magical sense of that world. one of the subtle pleasures of the evening was that the backing tapes that lina used were actual tapes. he kept popping cassettes out to provide the loops and background sounds required for each track. i'm not a fan of the whole resurgence of cassettes as recording medium, but this was great to watch.


it wasn't on purpose, but i kind of love how deutsch nepal's backing video bled onto the surrounding curtain. fyi to sala rosa: replace your goddamned screen. there are homeless people sleeping on things that would make a better projection surface.


 i got sort of fascinated by the big box of musical stickers.


i took a few steps back for raison d'être. [in the direction of the bar -ed.] although logic dictates that peter andersson is at least my age, i was kind of  shocked to see he could easily pass for my kid. the swedish health care system is even better than we've been told.



thank you, raison d'être, for providing the obligatory industrial show playing a piece of metal as instrument. 


a great power electronics set combines the visceral, physical impact of pure noise with the angry humanity of punk. brighter death now delivered on every possible measure. 


roger karmanik was joined on stage by lina [deutsch nepal] on bass. feel their shadowy menace.


i got this view a lot during the bdn set, when karmanik wasn't pacing, or barging into the audience, or doing unmentionable things with the microphone. if you're going to be in the front of the crowd, be prepared to become part of the show. i highly recommend it. he crouched about three inches from my face for much of "payday", my favourite bdn track ever. for a music fan, there is nothing that is going to compete with that experience.


the ending of the show [i don't want to spoil it for anyone who might be going] actually left me and others almost weepy. the bottom line? definitely the best show i've been to all year and probably on my top ten of all time. 

Comments

as long as you're here, why not read more?

don't speak

you might think that it sounds dramatic, but linguistic genocide is something that happens. people in power will go to great lengths to eradicate certain languages, not just for the sheer joy of making the world a lesser place, but as a way of beating down the culture that's associated with it. language has a unique reciprocal bond with culture, and every group that has attempted to break down another has recognised that forbidding a cultural group from communicating in their own language is an extremely effective way to tear apart their culture.

there are lots [and lots and lots and lots] of examples of this sort of thing, some successful, some not, but far too many to cover in one blog post. however, i thought it was worth looking at some languages that have been the subjects of active repression, and what the political consequences of that have been.

devastation :: the native north american languages :: it should come as no surprise that the largest genocide in history [by a ma…

losers?

just a short time ago, i waxed prosaic about trump supporters who felt betrayed by their candidate pursuing in office the exact things that he said he would. short version: i have no sympathy.

today is a bit different. in the wake of america's bombing of a syrian air strip, in response to a chemical weapons attack by the syrian government, my facebook and twitter feeds were peppered with plaintive shades of "we believed you". these are the people who heard trump say that he wanted the united states to step back and focus on defending its own. indeed, trump did say such things, over and over; america cannot be the policeman of the world. even arch-liberal cynics like me had to admit that this was a refreshing argument to hear from someone outside the paul family, and, could easily have been turned into trump's greatest argument against hillary clinton. [he chose to go another way, which also worked.]

trump also said, repeatedly, that america needed to invest heavily …

long division

after the united states election last year, there were the usual calls for the country to unite behind the new president. that never happens anymore, because, since george w. bush scored a victory in 2004, having launched the country into a war in iraq for no reason, the people on the losing side of a presidential election have been pretty bloody angry about it. democrats hated bush 43. republicans really hated obama. democrats really hate trump.

it didn't help that trump didn't make the typical conciliatory gestures like including a couple of members of the opposite party in his cabinet, or encouraging his party to proceed slowly with contentious legislation. barack obama arguably wasted at least two and as many as six years of his tenure as president trying to play peacemaker before he felt sufficiently safe to just say "screw you guys" and start governing around the ridiculous congress he was forced to deal with. not-giving-a-shit obama was the best president in …