Ian Curtis experiences the, er, known pleasures of a thrill ride with much more restraint than Billy Corgan.
Punk historian and music journalist Jon Savage has assembled an oral history of Joy Division to be published in March 2019. "This Searing Light, the Sun and Everything Else: Joy Division" features interviews with all the surviving members of the pioneering band -- Bernard Sumner, Peter Hook, and Stephen Morris -- along with Deborah Curtis, Peter Saville, Tony Wilson, Anik Honore, and others. It sounds to be a compelling companion to the 2007 documentary Joy Division, written by Savage and directed by Grant Gee.
Written by Tennessee Mowrey and Kevin Goldberg, the song is a wake-up call to Trump and any other "fucking asshole" who doesn't believe that climate change exists.
It was co-produced by my pal Ampersand, who writes:
"I immediately felt that these spirited and pissed off millennials were giving voice not only to my feelings about our president and his policies around climate change, but potentially to millions of others as well, and that it was important that the song was out in the world."
Give it a watch. Be forewarned, it's (rightly) sprinkled with NSFW language.
"I would hate to be thought of that we didn't think about things, y'know?" said Talking Heads guitarist Jerry Harrison. "But I think our music is really meant to be felt as much as anything." Read the rest
Poptone is the new live flashback experience from Daniel Ash and Kevin Haskins, being two-thirds of Love and Rockets and Tones on Tail, and half of Bauhaus. Joined by Haskins's talented daughter Diva Dompé, the trio is revisiting tunes from their highly-influential careers at the intersection of glam/goth, psychedelic post-punk, and avant-garde experimentalism. These are artists whose magnificent work shaped the alt.culture underground of the 1980s and 1990s and, for me personally, were a portal to endless streams of high weirdness in art and music. By all accounts, Poptone is a fantastic trip. Tour dates are here.
Here's The Cure performing "A Forest" live on television at Paris's Theatre de l'Empire on December 3, 1979. Robert Smith was 20 years old at the time.
I love this new video from Kid Congo and the Pink Monkey Birds, from an album I love even more, La Araña es La Vida. I got a chance to see Kid in DC while he was on tour this year and it was one of my favorite shows of the year. The man knows how to bring himself fully to a show.
You may know Kid Congo Power's work with the legendary Gun Club, Cramps, Nick Cave and the Bad Seeds, and I would hazard to say, his grossly underappreciated solo career, with albums like 2009's Dracula Boots and 2013's Haunted Head. La Araña es La Vida is Kid's 5th solo record.
The video for La Araña was directed by Alex Terrazas (aka Alex von Alex) and features an awesome Southern California backyard Chicano house party, complete with a visit from La Araña, the Teotihuacan spider goddess (of Pre-Columbian Teotihuacan civilization). A protector of the underworld, she is said to sprout hallucinogenic morning glory vines from her head. Here Kid explains why he chose to thematically invoke this bit of Mexican folklore on the record:
She sprouts hallucinogenic morning glories and protects the underworld. I thought that is very much like our duty as a band, to have the most open mind to vivid psychedelic dreams to create and protect the world of underground music, the music of the soul.
Morning glories, you say?
BTW, if you missed Kid's appearance on Amoeba Record's wonderful What's in my Bag? Read the rest
New Order performs "Ceremony," live in 1981. This was one of the last Joy Division compositions before the 1980 suicide of singer Ian Curtis and the remaining members became New Order.
Enjoy the psychotronic grandeur of the first DEVO short film, "In The Beginning Was The End: The Truth About De-Evolution," from 1976. Directed by Chuck Statler, the video took the first prize at the 1977 Ann Arbor Film Festival. Two key bits of background, via Wikipedia:
• Devo has claimed, occasionally, that the film contains subliminal messages, which allowed it to win at Ann Arbor.
• The ping-pong paddles shown in the Secret Agent Man segment have images of Richard Nixon and Chairman Mao Zedong on them.
In 1983, Downtown NYC post-punk dance band Liquid Liquid released this Michael Sporn Animation Studios video for "Cavern," a killer track whose bassline became the foundation of Grandmaster Melle Mel's pioneering hip hop track "White Lines (Don't Do It)." The excellent Superior Viaduct label has just reissued Liquid Liquid's classic records including Optimo, the EP containing "Cavern." Read the rest