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| blogging since Oct '01
This is Gordon Osse's blog.
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"He who does not at some time, with definite determination consent to the terribleness of life, or even exalt in it, never takes possession of the inexpressible fullness of the power of our existence."
all faces followers of
All colors, beams of
-- Akhenaton, "Hymn to the Sun"
Opt your children out of Pentagon harassment
WHO I WORK FOR: Mount Hope Wholesale
Wholesale nuts, grains, fruits and spices (and more) shipped from Cottonwood AZ
(Tell them you heard about them on Gordon's blog!)
WHAT I'VE SEEN LATELY:
(r) = re-viewing
God Told Me To (1976, Cohen)
Whispering City (1947, Otsep)
Times and Winds (2006, Erdem)
Dirty Money (Un flic) (1972, Melville)
10th District Court (2004, Depardon)
RFK Must Die: The Assassination of Bobby Kennedy (2007, O'Sullivan)
The Furies (1950, Mann)
In a Lonely Place (1950, Ray)(r)
The Adjuster (1991, Egoyan)(r)
Mad Men The Buddha of Suburbia Intelligence (2006, Haddock) Family Guy
SUGGESTED VIEWING: The Power of Nightmares: The Rise of the Politics of Fear (2004, Curtis) [available for streaming/download here]
Whereas contemporaries such as Martin Tetreault construct violent sonic pile-ups, Janek Schaefer has always coaxed more balmy textures from his drone-based vinyl and sampling experiments. As with this record's predecessor, Above Buildings, the music on Pulled Under is true to the title, a linked series of murky soundscapes and tidal flows akin to the sounds heard from within a diving bell. As such, it's a bit low-key. But it is still eminently approachable -- more Kevin Shields than John Cage. Tellingly, it is dedicated to Schaefer's girlfriend, immediately steering it away from studied minimalism or random generative guff. For an artist working entirely with abstraction, it gives the lie to the notion that experimentalism is a cold fa?ade.
Melissa Brown, a 28-year-old New York artist, recently served PBR at the opening of her art show at the Bellwether Gallery, located in the fashionable and hip Brooklyn neighborhood of Williamsburg. She explains her choice by saying that "it's time to get back to the basics."
The increase comes the way a populist trend should: from the ground up. Pabst is Consumer Lite, a refreshing blend of economy and Americana, without all the heavy marketing campaigns, the greasy reinvention, the paid celebrity endorsements. It represents simpler times -- how nice in a world of corporate scandals and missing persons, 24-hour news, terrorism and burst economies.
Pabst sells its image of plainness -- its look of regular-guy health, its artless presence among the racks of imports and million-dollar household names -- in part because Pabst has no other choice.
The Pabst product line, which includes almost the entire stable of retiring American front-runners -- Stroh's, Schlitz, Old Style, Old Milwaukee, Schaefer and Blatz -- is now produced under contract by Miller, the last of the big Milwaukee brewers (but owned by South African interests).
Today Pabst Brewing exists in little more than name only. It maintains executive offices in San Antonio but continues to print on its PBR cans and labels a post office box in Milwaukee -- perhaps misleadingly, perhaps nostalgically.
The article sums up by saying -- essentially -- that because PBR has no advertising budget and was originally marketed as the beer of "the common man," it has accrued a patina of authenticity with the 18-34 male demographic.
If some Americans fail to feel moved by what happened to Iraq's cultural artifacts, it might have to do with how our society views the place of art.
We might never know why the looting continued unchecked despite strong early warnings from the world art community that Iraq's treasures required protection. But the cynic in me wonders whether the American military would have done more to protect the museums had we been a country that better recognized the value of art.
Proof of Americans' belief that art is expendable is found within local, state and federal governments, where politicians frequently argue that our taxes should be funding more important things. Hence the current considerations by some states -- such as New Jersey and Florida -- to eliminate their arts agencies in the face of budget woes.
The people we saw weeping last weekend in Baghdad's museum know how crucial art is to a nation's spirit and a people's identity. So did Winston Churchill. When asked whether England's arts budget should be cut to help fund World War II, he said, "God, no. What the hell are we fighting for?"
Of course there's also the point that some Americans will probably be among those who profit from the sale of these stolen items -- underlining the "real" value of art (or much else) for many here.
Even the Ancient Romans had more appreciation for art.
The film, adapted from Junji Ito's manga bearing the same name, invites the viewer to spend some time in the eerie working-class town of Kurozu-cho. While things at first appear normal, a closer look reveals that the town is struggling with an apocalyptic, mystical obsession with Uzumaki, translated into English as Spirals.
What is not to like about this movie? Scatman Caruthers as a toupee'd creme-de-menthe drinking pimp and Nichelle Nichols (Lieutenant Uhura from Star Trek) hissing obscenities and slapping hoes as a madam?
I liked Over the Edge (vintage Matt Dillon) and Heart Like A Wheel (ditto Bonnie Bedelia and Jeff Bridges), and Love Field was the Michelle Pfeiffer film that David Thomson liked so much, I think. It featured Dennis Haysbert long before 24 & Far from Heaven, too.
Can you tell I've finally had enough of politics for now? Just plumb worn out by shrubco and their enervating fascist tweaker minions.
I'm a big Cluster/Harmonia/Roedelius fan, some stuff by Moebius solo and otherwise too. Also Kluster '71 (Roedelius/Moebius w/ Conrad Schnitzler), a fair selection of Can (unlike many true believers, I'm more a fan of their mid-to-late 70s material, Future Days, Saw Delight, though some early tracks like "Spoon" and "One More Saturday Night" are great too), and in the right mood Neu!, esp. 75. Popol Vuh were neat too; their soundtracks to some of Herzog's movies were integral to the experience (particularly Aguirre and Nosferatu).
I loved Kraftwerk back in the 70s, even went to see them in NYC in '81. They were hilarious.
I had a friend named Jeff Capshew who turned me onto much of this between '77-'79, for which I owe him. Good times. There weren't many of us in central Jersey, I can tell ya. Of course much of this was only available as expensive imports too.
Amon Duul, Klaus Schulze, TD -- these other ones Cope mentions, weren't up my street so much. But I never know what I'll like til I hear it, and it's been so long, I'd have to hear them again to know.
No one had any idea then how influential this stuff would be, except Lester Bangs and Eno.
Buckman also is a member of Unitarian Universalist Church of Arlington, which in 1995 became one of the first area congregations to include a labyrinth in its ministry. Like many contemporary labyrinths, the church's painted canvas resembles a stone design dating to circa 1201 and found on the floor of Chartres Cathedral in France. The pattern features 11 circuits, or rings, that wind back and forth to form four quadrants leading to a flower-shaped center. The quadrant divisions suggest the shape of a cross. Such labyrinths became popular in medieval times, when they apparently were used for rituals such as liturgical dance, Lenten activities and as symbolic journeys to the Holy Land.
The Rev. Lauren Artress of Grace Cathedral in San Francisco became inspired after visiting the Chartres labyrinth. Her 1995 book, "Walking a Sacred Path: Rediscovering the Labyrinth as a Spiritual Tool," launched the renaissance of labyrinths in the United States. Now, labyrinths of various designs and sizes can be found not only at churches but at locations such as hospitals, New Age retreat centers, parks and schools.
There was one at a church in Flagstaff I used to go to on February 15th, which was significant in some way I don't remember.
According to promotional material, SFX "will explore our culture through the broad, historic and compelling lens of science fiction." The material promises models of "bug-eyed monsters" and exhibits that illustrate "science fiction's alternate realities."
In an interview, Allen said the enterprise would be incorporated as a nonprofit enterprise but might eventually become a business. He called it "a hybrid project" that would have "a multimedia component" but would "not be a theme park or a ride."
Yup, we can do that. Oh, you want to come back from the dead? Well, okay. You'll need a body for that, of course, preferably one that's not being used. Costya, but then doesn't everything these days. Clones are pricey, take my advice you'll go for pre-worn instead. Might be a few minor settling-in complications ? drug addiction, minor damage to organs, old viral complaints, that kind of thing ? but really, it doesn't take too much getting used to. Oh, and try not to bump into anyone who knew the previous owner, that can be, well, awkward.
This book was one of the 2 or 3 a year I get immersed in like I did as a kid.
Why popular and acclaimed British writer Matthew Branton is giving away his new book The Tie and the Crest [Undernews]
Miranda Sawyer: Why are you giving away your work?
Michael Branton: The deal in British publishing is supposed to be that the crap is published and put up with because it funds the good stuff. I'm afraid that I have to ask, where is the good stuff? To quote the Manics: 'Libraries gave us power.' Not any more they don't. They're stuffed full of Sophie Dahl and Naomi Campbell's novels, along with Tony Parsons's drivel, a gang of floppy-fringed public schoolboys and their precious pointless literary fictions, a few failed PR girls and all the rest of the cobblers that passes for a publishing culture these days...
The culture industry in Britain since the early Nineties has come to consist almost entirely of consumer capitalist propaganda dressed up as 'better living': young people are made to feel that living some kind of cross between Sex and the City and Cold Feet with a swindling mortgage and a swindling pension and a house stuffed full of cheap tasteful shit manufactured for sub-breadline wages in China is the best you can hope for in this life. Lots of people (not just let's-run-a-vineyard type yuppies) have rejected this and pissed off out of it to try living another way that doesn't make you so ashamed. Do you remember that census last year that showed a million young men unaccounted for? The only comment was facetious: maybe they're all in Ibiza. No. We're in the remote places of the world, growing our own food, working in kind for what else we need. You don't hear about us because really, why should we tell you?
His last book (The Hired Gun) just came out here, garnering comparisons to Graham Greene.
"Is it legal?" I ask. "Opinions are one thing. But collusive behavior, or manipulative lies - like the pumping and dumping on an Internet stock board - these are more complicated issues. With no regulation, there's just no way to know how dirty the system really is."
My rant is interrupted by a curvaceous blond hostess brandishing a bottle of Cristal.
The producer replies: "Sure, people do try and manipulate the boards. But whether it's unethical or mildly illegal - does it really matter? Good projects turn into good movies. Bad projects turn into bad movies. The buying is just one part of the process."
Everyone knows how the 60's transformed pop music forever, and how, in the 70's, a crop of Young Turk directors gave rise to a second golden age of Hollywood. But what about the similarly epochal shift in comedy? Following close on Mort Sahl came Lenny Bruce, Mike Nichols, Elaine May, Woody Allen and Bill Cosby, a group of idiosyncratic geniuses and near-geniuses who revolutionized stand-up, making it darker, more politically satirical and personally introspective. The story of that revolution has now finally been told, and beautifully so, in Gerald Nachman's Seriously Funny: The Rebel Comedians of the 1950s and 1960s, a compendium of reminiscences, biography, gossip, score-settling, revisionism and sniping.
See also this post on Bob Newhart and the linked WP article.
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Chatty tale of Contortions Past, the new box (Irresistible Impulse), and the No New York tracks that didn't make the cut
Jody Harris scrapes his guitar pick along a metal guitar string -- makes a grating, insinuating, disturbing sound -- and the band jumps in, an onslaught of noise. But it really moves, has an r&b-rock 'n' roll undertow that's propulsive and compelling. (I've seen them a number of times already and am starting to learn how they do it -- to hear expert counter-rhythms, riffs, tonal relationships in the noise...) James Chance looks contemptuously at the audience, dances as he sings, and he's an incredible dancer, fast, and he's shimmying across stage on one leg, then smashing his body down on the floor but bouncing back up in a sharp motion, elbows and legs out in all directions but always moving.
I remember he had an Asian girlfriend that got him into smack, and things tapered off thereafter.
But the show I saw at Max's Kansas City was masterful. These guys and the Lounge Lizards did something wonderful to jazz and whatever.
From the bestselling author of Fast Food Nation comes this captivating look at the underbelly of the American marketplace. In three sections, Schlosser, an Atlantic Monthly correspondent, examines the marijuana, migrant labor and pornography trades, offering compelling tales of crime and punishment as well as an illuminating glimpse at the inner workings of the underground economy. The book revolves around two figures: Mark Young of Indiana, who was sentenced to life in prison without parole for his relatively minor role in a marijuana deal; and Reuben Sturman, an enigmatic Ohio man who built and controlled a formidable pornography distribution empire before finally being convicted of tax evasion, after beating a string of obscenity charges. Through recounting Young's and Sturman's ordeals, and to a lesser extent, the lives of migrant strawberry pickers in California, Schlosser unravels an American society that has "become alienated and at odds with itself." Like Fast Food Nation, this is an eye-opening book, offering the same high level of reporting and research. But while Schlosser does put forth forceful and unique market-based arguments, he isn't the first to take aim at the nation's drug laws and the puritanical hypocrisy that seeks to jail pornographers while permitting indentured servitude in California's strawberry fields. Nevertheless, this is a solid-and timely-second effort from Schlosser. As world events force Americans to choose values worth fighting for, Schlosser reminds readers, "the price of freedom is often what freedom brings." [from Publishers Weekly, quoted on amazon]
Jury award winner at Cannes ruled ineligible at Oscars because Palestine "not a nation"
On the grounds that "Palestine is not a nation," the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences refused the Palestinian entry "Divine Intervention," for the nomination of "Best Foreign Film."
The movie, which was directed by the renowned Palestinian director Elia Suleiman, recently won the Jury Award in the world famous "Cannes Film Festival" of France. The film describes a love story between a Palestinian man from Jerusalem, and a Palestinian woman from Ramallah, set against the background of the harsh conditions of Israeli occupation and repression.
The American film industry has often been accused of "backwardness" with regard to the recognition of Palestinian rights, and of the standard portrayal of Arabs in negative stereotypes of aggression and savagery. The sharp contrast between the film coming out as a winner in the Cannes festival on the European continent, while not being allowed to enter the competition in the United States, also illustrates the differences in the political climate between the two continents.