October 9, 2010 § Leave a comment
I dip in and out of ‘the modern dance’ and I don’t mean Pere Ubu’s debut EP. I mean general pop-culture, the conveyer belt culture of talent; plastic and fraudulent faces gawping back at me from the television screen. Home Grown Talent, thank heavens!
The demented people who watch this show are fucking idiots, the people involved with this monstrosity are fucking idiots and the four, thick talent-less judges are cunt’s who don’t deserve oxygen never mind wealth. Each deserves to be dragged into a filthy toilet cubicle and beaten a-la Cheryl Cole style (more about that Geordie lout later).
There is no redemption, at least from my eye-level, for those who are willing to jump through Cowell’s haemorrhoidal ring. Especially considering that prostitution is a far more noble profession and doesn’t involve guzzling down a twat’s worm-like secretions (mostly anyway). It also has the added bonus of longevity, outlasting the toxic twelve week period in which aborted X-Factor foetuses survive away from their glass-jar and Simon Cowell’s 2-inch feeding tube.
I didn’t know any of their names before a google search, but that doesn’t matter… As long as the typical categories have been constructed for our supposed amusement;
There’s the fat woman, Mary Bryne, who looks like a Gregg’s shop assistant. I feel quite mean about typing that… But I am listening to Van Morrison, Astral Weeks, that’s my excuse.
The dim middleclass girl, Katie Waissel (exotic!), whose jaw seems to betray her gender and who seems to be posing as Mr Cowell’s personal and unaffected transvestite.
The cold face of desperation, Storm Lee (need I say more?) the American equivalent of a Butlin’s redcoat without the refined acting skills (see Alfie Moon). We all like to see an ironic American laughed at though…
A teasing teenage jailbait character, Cher Lloyd (17-years-old); an expert at mangling moronic American ‘gangsta’ culture with her own mild Worcestershire upbringing. Her forehead resembles the crinkled scrotum of a middle-aged man; her consistently shifting frown-lines are used tactically to distract us from her alarmingly pug-like features. Special Move: Reminding me of the shaky feline I see sipping Red Bull from discarded cans on my estate (council, not country).
The egregious but excitable, Wagner (pronounced “vag-ner”), resembles a hyperactive pirate turned Kebab shop owner… My personal favourite because I can blame mental illness for his involvement and maybe get a veggie kebab combo in the same transaction. Exudes happiness & warmth.
Belle Amie (Oooh La La! GCSE French at play). Reminds me of the proper irritating girls that you’d still sleep with. Y’see them about town all the time, short skirts, peroxide hair, Topman attire and a perfected pubic region (I think it’s called pubic topiary).
Nicolo Festa, professional TWAT. Johnny Foreigner. In my experience most X-Factor watchers are Daily Mail readers. This explains intelligence levels, but what’s most intriguing about this is that if this male was a hard-working builder he’d be an enemy of this fraternity, but set upon a shit ‘reality’ tv show and he’s James Dean reincarnate. Odd. Let’s all hope this ends in a car-crash. And I don’t mean that figuratively.
Some might say my pondering is AD HOMINEM and therefore useless (click for definition, see I’m helpful ‘n’ not condesending). But if you hold the belief, as I, that music is an important self-expression then ad hominem is of paramount importance. Simply put. If an idiot sings then he/she is expressing and emitting rays of idiocy and when these idiotic rays exude it usually ends up smothered in Cowell bodily fluid. Juicy.
August 19, 2010 § Leave a comment
The following is the result of the inspirational and often hysterical awe that The Captain – Mr Don Van Vliet emits. Whilst the following scraps of text are entirely brief, incomplete and pathetic comparably, I wish to somehow surmise the significance of a man entirely overlooked by modernity, not merely to satisfy my own heartbreak but to document my own feelings in somewhat of an ordered manner outside and away from my own mind. If you don’t know who Captain Beefheart is then the following will be largely useless and nonsensical, but as you aren’t aware of Don Van Vliet, I really don’t care.
Sculpting a raw beaten imprint and existing only in a transitionary state, before permeating and leaving you permanently sizzled… You don’t even really like this horrendous noise; ‘Troutmask Replica’. And you’ve been left damaged from its secretions; your skin is shrivelled from being exposed to it. You dislike the racket and the mark that remains from its initial run-through has made you irritable. Yet as you shed its effects; this dead membrane that has collected upon your flesh falls aside and beneath, thicker and stronger is yet an even more visible sign of its influence upon you. It spreads, eventually consuming.
The world recedes.
Another verse plummets downward and slices you in half, revealing the faults within your own corrupted flesh. Innards explode and guts are entangled. This destruction is beautiful. It is the masterful inclination of a genius; Captain Beefheart. This is fact and this is serious. This is art. Art. A-R-T. Now, usually such grandiose terms are hidden beneath a barrage of scoffs, especially within popular culture. A wall of pomposity imposes upon you, like one of those idiots who believe the term ‘genius’ is solely applicable to The Beatles or Bob Dylan, but such is the state of our tragic world. In this particular case, I can state without pretension, without having to stifle a laugh at my own arrogance, and without needing to amend my own hysterical blubbering, that Don Van Vliet is a genius.
Don Van Vliet inhabits the Mojave Desert. He isn’t influenced by anything that came before and doesn’t let trivial annoyance (such as the weather) distract or change him. From the pictorial evidence I’ve gawped at, he doesn’t even own a tan, despite living in a trailer upon a desert. Mere underlings such as you and I must adapt to survive, Don refutes compromise. The entire buzzing world shifts around him even though he seems to want nothing of it himself. For me, this perfectly displays and defines Captain Beefheart, uncompromising, immoveable and flagellated by principle. He remains unaffected, even nature abides. He is a cast iron imprint of his own ideas. A red hot poker moulded into an incomprehensible figure, forever marking us, his bovine flock, with the distinct idiosyncrasies of a Beefheart disciple.
Don doesn’t seem to have faith in the strength of the English language, to him it seems to crumble and buckle when his intent is flung close by. He definitely doesn’t trust it… Old stories modified through generations, filtered from decade to decade, slightly affected and changed in its meaning; derided and compromised… This is Don’s nightmare. It’s too breakable, too fragile; therefore using the English language in the literal sense could never suffice. A whole unabridged lexicon is unlocked, archived and unleashed. Don’s distrust of language, or more accurately, his distrust of OUR language stems from it being a medium for emotion instead of it being something you intrinsically feel or automatically comprehend. Therefore in reflection, his decision to escape and evade the music industry for his first love of painting and sculpting shouldn’t be surprising. His raw passion, leaving you scrambled, and reasserted to the mains is now, especially for him, purer than ever. His works now don’t have the discomfort or inadequacy of requiring a translatory medium for deliverance.
Around the release of ‘Doc at The Radar Station’ in 1980 and during an interview with Lester Bangs (a friend of Beefheart) Don explained this situation perfectly “We’re talking without talking. I mean that in a good sense. We’re saying things that can’t be put into the tongue. It’s like good music”.
Instinctive, a throbbing nerve, a live wire, The Captain is a creature, a monster in a cave, however maybe this analogy of cave-like proportions is entirely wrong. In fact, I know this is the case. Don is the evolved being, the affluent and superior figure singing into newly created fire whilst we’re asleep in the cave, grunting, smelly and incapable. He senses, he doesn’t evaluate, he feels.
The Doc’s here only to lacerate the flesh of his victim, for his own relief, pleasure and probably amusement. But whilst he works selfishly (as it should be) for his art, he reveals his true-self, dispersing his irrepressible and incomprehensible wonder. His work comes down to the basic models of art, natural progressions; creation and destruction. Throughout his musical expositions he allows us to observe his many procedures, whilst we do observe his methodical practices magically sedate us and next our body is being used for The Doc’s explorations. We become his mannequins, his victims; The Enlightened Ones.
Don once professed that he didn’t make music, he made spells. Bewitchingly I agree. Bow down, bow down. His writing deals in truths not facts. Swells of cascading vocal augmentation ponders and rivets over constructions of everything contained within life.
Beefheart vocally has been compared (lazily) to Howlin’ Wolf who was in turn named such for his verbal sensibilities to that of his namesake. There IS something in that theorem. Undoubtedly there’s an animalistic glare within The Captain, exuded through every movement, stem of music, verbose pattering, suffocated noise, exploited silence, heart bled yelp, angered roar, pain filled spurt and barbaric howl. Don deals with the aesthetics of Anthropomorphism; it’s a default setting.
Loosely borrowing a line from Lester Bangs ‘unlike his other contemporaries, who escaped the 1960s as survivors, The Captain is a natural resource.’
Beefheart’s music will never be recognised. It will never be a trend. It cannot be superficially drafted into the mainstream. I’m glad, very glad, and this isn’t my wincing, snot-nostril inflicted pronunciation of knowing something you don’t; *wink wink* “Aren’t I proper clever?” This is something above my mere mortal status.
He is genius.
August 16, 2010 § Leave a comment
The wretch-full silhouette of Lady Gaga inflicts a bodily-reaction similar to that of regurgitation, but even with that bodily reaction, there’s the benefit of relief after the contents of your dinner have been spewed… With Gaga the taste remains, permeates and then inevitably becomes another ‘avant-garde’ hit for the youngsters.
To fully understand the idiocy and derivative nature of Gaga, you merely need to have insight that enables you to peer past your own nose. The Lady Gaga outline has been a constant irritant throughout ‘Pop’ history; Madonna, Kylie, Britney… The list is eternal and forever existent. Her formulaic appeal is simple: outrage parents by immersing herself in faux-controversy (recall the rumours of her being the procurer of a penis?) make vague and pretentious statements to engage with all demographics (“You have to be unique, and different, and shine in your own way”) and make sure it is universally acknowledged exactly who your sponsors are (by unsubtly scattering them throughout your new ‘masterpiece’ of a video ‘Telephone’). Now, merely await the fall-out whilst allowing the mindless to hail you as their saviour and view your increased ‘credibility’ as an art-house phenomenon. Lady Gaga status achieved.
The reasoning for such vitriolic attacks upon Gaga, her troupe of fans and her ‘LATEST N GREATEST’ single Alejandro is due to the gall of her record company. The systematic intention to brandish and implement yet another mindless starlet upon the youth of today is irritating, BUT when it is lapped up without resistance or retaliation it becomes a horrifying portrayal of our lost generation reflected in Gaga’s oversized fucking glasses. In grander and more moralistic terms – she’s yet another manufactured pop star filling gullible teen-minds with the pretence that she IS art, once more adding to the evolution of banality within popular culture. Sadly the belief in Gaga being the Next-Coming seems to have been validated through her achievement of innumerable sales. However the only way to cope is to accredit this feat to a universal hormonal imbalance making it mandatory for teenagers to buy into the monstrous Gaga craze. Her method of deception lies within a world of menopausal Sex and the City watching journalists. These people crave any opportunity to be smothered, quite literally, in anything “fashionable” and therefore will hoist Gaga’s stock higher in supposed terms of credibility and, of course, sales.
Back to this particular production and ‘Alejandro’ is a typical Gaga single, her third from the multi-platinum selling album, The Fame Monster. The supposed interest lies within her ability to pull off a non-convincing Spanish accent ‘En su bolsillo’ evidently showing herself as the sophisticate that her fans have heavily invested into believing. Whilst granting her a new demographic to drain for resources, this single also enables her to parade her chillingly laughable high-school Spanish and immerse herself headlong in yet more notions of ‘culture’.
Lyrically, the song is largely non-existent. There is little if any coherence or structure, but undoubtedly this will be interpreted as intentional and ‘edgy’, and gives her slack-jawed fans less to think about, yet another bonus for any Gaga-diehard.
Seemingly the Lady had difficulty in rhyming the noun Alejandro and therefore had to invite another two male protagonists into the mix, (‘Roberto’ n ‘Fernando’) You’d have thought Gaga would’ve pounced upon the opportunity to fling a ménage a trios into her resume but no… Ahh New York gals ain’t wot they used to be!
The sentiment within the song is as confusing and as irritating as Gaga herself. She waggles a sense of ambiguity by doing nothing, whilst flinging forth illusions of grandeur and meaning that never come.
Although, Gaga would lead you to believe ‘Alejandro’ to be a controversial statement about sexual equality and a dismissal of religious convention (note the music video for Alejandro; Gaga consuming rosary beads) none of these convoluted claims spring true. It is merely yet another ploy to garner attention and gain more tabloid space. Feat achieved? Yeh unfortunately…
Gaga isn’t a person. She is a brand being peddled throughout the Western world. She is the new swine flu and needs to be culled