[^^ Up] - [jahsonic.com] - [Take The Tour] Take The Guided Tour

Search by keywords:
In Association with Amazon.com

2002, Dec 01; 15:48:
  • Triston Palmer Meets Jah Thomas in Disco Style Entertainment [1 CD, Amazon US]
    Reggae music is continually developing and mutating, even when it appears relatively static; take, for example, the late 'seventies, a time when international attention increasingly focussed on the great Bob Marley, and the successful hitmaking studios like Channel One and Joe Gibbs. However, that was by no means the whole story; independent producers like Lincoln 'Sugar' Minott, Leon Synmoie, Linval Thompson, Jah Thomas, Percy 'Jah Life' Chin, Henry 'Junjo' Lawes, Ossie Thomas and others were laying the foundations of what would soon become known as 'dancehall' music. Steve Barrow for Blood and Fire [...]
    2002, Dec 01; 15:38:
  • Fear of Living [LIVE] - Karen Finley [1 book, Amazon US]
    You may remember Finley as one of the 5 controversial performing artists who struggled against bigoted conservative congressmen in the early 90s to keep their Performing Arts funding. Their in-your-face performance art, often dealing openly/squarely with important issues such as homosexuality, AIDS, spousal abuse, sex, drugs and a host of other "liberal" issues, was seen as "dirty," "un-American," "immoral,"etc. by the Religious Right.( I forget who won out in the end.) I caught Finley in Berkeley in 1992--it was a formal "reading"(!) in an academic setting--we were all floored! In her full concert performances, Finley would hypnotically chant unnerving, tawdry litanies at the top of her lungs (especially)about female angst (at full-screech, mind you) while covering her semi-nude body in chocolate syrup and faux-masturbating with yams--(No unfortunately I missed the full show!) The next day after the reading (during which she belted and raved, but no foodstuffs! )I bought her first album, and let my friends listen--I remember we were all transfixed from beginning to end...a totally original sound, lots of comedy, even some tears...WOW, we thought, what powerful--and appalling use of rhythm and language and that pleasantly blood-chilling voice! It's captured in all of its irreverent yet uplifting power on this album, with some of her chants set to music. (NOTE: The catchy "SUSHI SUSHI SUSHI! ALBACORE AND EEL!" has nothing to do with maguro!) I bought this later Finley offering FEAR OF LIVING (many tracks taken/ re-mixed from original album) on the cheap many years later, and have played the heck out of it. There's lots of obscenity on the album, but it serves the higher purpose of articulating this artist's rage at the Male Machine--and in this sense she is a very high-minded, intellectual artist! If you are not easily offended--or better, if you love being offended-- and are looking for a PRIMO, CATHARTIC ALBUM--give this unique performance art a chance! (Warning: this album is not for most grandmas! ) (By the way, look for Finley in the role of the female MD in PHILADELPHIA with Tom Hanks--you'd never guess from that movie that this woman had screwed sweet potatoes on stage before appreciative audiences less than a decade before!) [...]
    2002, nov 30; 22:49:
  • Blood and Guts in High School - Kathy Acker [1 book, Amazon US]

    Janey is a little girl wandering through a fantasy landscape of men who reject her-- her father, Jean Genet, the Persian Slave Trader, Tommy. This is a book communicating a world of pain-- the dialogues in the beginning between Janey and her father as he prepares to leave her for someone else carry the weight of the agony of someone being betrayed by someone so close and all the little lies and tricks we use to pull closer and push away. It's also a book about illness. Janey constantly has pain and infections and disease that cripple her, but she always pushes the physical pain to one side to focus on the men who she knows from the beginning are going to leave her.

    It is not the easiest book in the world to read-- the emotion, rather than the plot, is the thread that ties the book together. There's a section in the book which is a series of drawings by Janey that provide a map to her dreams. I used this map to give the reading experience a kind of structure and I found that thinking about the book as a dream landscape made the lack of narrative much less jarring. -- frumiousb for amazon.com [...]

    2002, nov 30; 11:07:
  • Milo Manara - Click [1 book, Amazon US]
    Frigid rich bitch Claudia gets a little implant in the right spot with a remote control. Turn the knob and voila! She¹s a hot cauldron of unleashed lust!
    Alright, if you're interested in Click 2, it is because you already have read Click. So you know what it's about: sex. If that is what you are looking for, this is the book. It has all the explicit scenes anyone could wish for. The plot? Hmmm, well... yes, it has one. Manara seems as mysoginistic as always, but you cannot take him too seriously in his erotic books. It is fun to read, does not make a lot of sense most of the time, but the art is great. Have fun. -- Albrecht Bake for amazon.com [...]
    2002, nov 29; 22:31:
  • First Choice - Greatest Hits [1 book, Amazon US]
    Philadelphia based female vocal group. Norman Harris produced their uptempo cuts with that classic Salsoul/Gold Mind feel. Shep Pettibone later remixed 'Let No Man Put Asunder ' [it's not over...over] and 'Dr. Love', with great dancefloor acclaim. Rochelle Fleming continued to pursue her music career during the nineties. For the Larry Levan spotters: 'Double Cross (Gold Mind, 1979) (Larry Levan mixed this on SA8533). And finally for the Tee Scott spotters: Gg 502 Gold Mind First Choice Love Thang 1979 12" (this is Tee Scott's first ever mix) [...]
    2002, nov 30; 00:56:
  • Pomosexuals: Challenging Assumptions About Gender and Sexuality [1 book, Amazon US]
    We live in a complicated world, and according to PoMoSexuals, it is a lot more complicated than we thought. Now that society has become accustomed to the idea that gay men and lesbians exist, Lawrence Schimel and Carol Queen have brought together 15 essays dedicated to demolishing those categories. They are not, of course, arguing that homosexuals don't exist, but simply that these categories and words cannot do justice to the wondrous complexity of human sexuality. In PoMoSexuals you can read about heterosexual women who identify as gay men, the politics of placing a transgendered personal ad, and how trendy gay male ghetto culture is less about sexual liberation than brand-name accumulation. No matter what your sexual identity is, PoMoSexuals will startle and enlighten, provoke and entertain. [...], [...]
    2002, nov 29; 22:31:
  • Anne Rice - Interview with a Vampire [1 book, Amazon US]
    [1976, question to self: read it in China or Indonesia?]
    In the now-classic novel Interview with the Vampire, Anne Rice refreshed the archetypal vampire myth for a late-20th-century audience. The story is ostensibly a simple one: having suffered a tremendous personal loss, an 18th-century Louisiana plantation owner named Louis Pointe du Lac descends into an alcoholic stupor. At his emotional nadir, he is confronted by Lestat, a charismatic and powerful vampire who chooses Louis to be his fledgling. The two prey on innocents, give their "dark gift" to a young girl, and seek out others of their kind (notably the ancient vampire Armand) in Paris. But a summary of this story bypasses the central attractions of the novel. First and foremost, the method Rice chose to tell her tale--with Louis' first-person confession to a skeptical boy--transformed the vampire from a hideous predator into a highly sympathetic, seductive, and all-too-human figure. Second, by entering the experience of an immortal character, one raised with a deep Catholic faith, Rice was able to explore profound philosophical concerns--the nature of evil, the reality of death, and the limits of human perception--in ways not possible from the perspective of a more finite narrator.
    While Rice has continued to investigate history, faith, and philosophy in subsequent Vampire novels (including The Vampire Lestat, The Queen of the Damned, The Tale of the Body Thief, Memnoch the Devil, and The Vampire Armand), Interview remains a treasured masterpiece. It is that rare work that blends a childlike fascination for the supernatural with a profound vision of the human condition. --Patrick O'Kelley
    2002, nov 29; 22:31:
  • Amores Perros (2000) [1 DVD, Amazon US]
    Amores Perros roughly translates to "Love's a bitch," and it's an apt summation of this remarkable film's exploration of passion, loss, and the fragility of our lives. In telling three stories connected by one traumatic incident, Mexican director Alejandro Gonzalez Inarritu uses an intricate screenplay by novelist Guillermo Arriaga to make three movies in close orbit, expressing the notion that we are defined by what we lose--from our loves to our family, our innocence, or even our lives. These interwoven tales--about a young man in love with his brother's pregnant wife, a perfume spokeswoman and her married lover, and a scruffy vagrant who sidelines as a paid killer--are united by a devastating car crash that provides the film's narrative nexus, and by the many dogs that the characters own or care for. There is graphic violence, prompting a disclaimer that controversial dog-fight scenes were harmless and carefully supervised, but what emerges from Amores Perros is a uniquely conceptual portrait of people whom we come to know through their relationship with dogs. The film is simultaneously bleak, cynical, insightful, and compassionate, with layers of meaning that are sure to reward multiple viewings. --Jeff Shannon [...]
    2002, nov 29; 22:21:
  • Y Tu Mama Tambien (And Your Mother Too) (2001) [1 DVD, Amazon US]
    Plenty of juicy "s" words apply to And Your Mother Too: sexy, sweet, subtle, sad, surprising, superb... and did we say sexy? With enough male and female nudity to qualify as softcore porn--but deserving none of the stigma attached to that label--this vibrant coming-of-age road movie is guaranteed to jumpstart any viewer's libido. Frank treatment of its characters' burgeoning sexuality makes this unrated film a real eye-opener, but it's never prurient or juvenile. Rather, the three-way odyssey of two 17-year-old Mexican boys (Gael García Bernal, Diego Luna) and a 28-year-old Spanish beauty (Maribel Verdú) is energetic and affirmative, while acknowledging that relationships--and sexual adventures--rarely develop without a hitch or two (or three). Filmed in sequence by Alfonso Cuarón (Great Expectations), and shot with invigorating natural style, this refreshing comedy-drama employs an omniscient narrator to reflect upon precious stolen moments, weaving three lives into a memorable tapestry of fun, friendship, and fate. --Jeff Shannon [...]
    2002, nov 29; 21:53:
  • Silent Running - Douglas Trumbull [1 DVD, Amazon US]
    After creating many of the innovative special effects for 2001: A Space Odyssey, Douglas Trumbull tried his hand at directing, and 1971's Silent Running marked an impressive debut. (In addition to creating the visual effects for Close Encounters of the Third Kind and directing 1983's Brainstorm, Trumbull later turned to the creation of high-tech cinematic amusement park rides.) One of the best science fiction films of the 1970s, Silent Running stars Bruce Dern as Freeman Lowell, a nature-loving crewmember aboard the Valley Forge, a gigantic spaceship in a small fleet that carries the last surviving forests of the Earth, which has fallen victim to overpopulation and ecological neglect. Freeman's name reflects his nonconformist philosophy, which runs counter to the prevailing recklessness of his three ill-fated crewmates, who are eager to jettison their precious payload and return to the bleakness of Earth. Before they can sabotage the forests, Freeman does what he must, and spends the remainder of his mission with three robotic "drones" as his only companions, struggling to maintain his sanity in the vastness of space. Dern is superb in this memorable role, representing the lost soul of humankind as well as the back-to-nature youth movement of the 1960s and the pre-Watergate era. (Appropriately, Joan Baez sings the film's theme song.) A rare science fiction film that combines bold adventure with passionate social conscience, Silent Running will remain relevant as long as the Earth is threatened by the ravages of human carelessness. --Jeff Shannon [...]
    2002, nov 28; 22:55:
  • Download This - New Sector Movements [1CD, Amazon US]
    Download This is the brainchild of prolific producer IG Culture [I. Grant] working under the pseudonym New Sector Movements. Starting his career with hip-hop duo Dodge City Productions almost a decade ago, IG has more recently tuned into the merits of a sound becoming increasingly known as phusion. Taking reference from 1960/70s fusion pioneers such as Herbie Hancock, Roy Ayers and George Duke, as well as the funk and soul sounds of artists like Stevie Wonder, his aim is to update these classic vibes for today's modern dance floor. Joining artists like 4 Hero's Dego McFarlane, Bugz In The Attic, Modaji, Phil Asher, King Britt and Jazzanova in the quest for future soul music, IG's NSM project is one of the most accomplished takes on the sound. This debut is a beautifully balanced mix of jazz-funk grooves, soulful vocals, busted up beats (no straight four to the floor here, though the mood is often as uplifting as good quality soul house) and warm analogue sounds. In terms of dance music, it's one of the most musically exciting and highly original records to emerge for a very long time. It might take a while to get used to its eclectic vibe, but when you do the rewards are startlingly high. Start downloading--now! --Paul Sullivan [...]
    2002, nov 28; 22:11:
  • Sweet Soul Music: by Peter Guralnick [1 book, Amazon US]
    Guralnick's thesis seems to be that Southern soul achieved its great creative flowering in the 60s as a result of the partnership between black and white musicians, and even though he interviews a great number of musicians and businessmen - black and white - he can't help himself from empathising with the young white hipsters that made up the house bands at Stax and Muscle Shoals, with the result that the book becomes very much a story told from their point of view (Guralnick calls Dan Penn the "secret hero of this book" - fair enough, but surely James Brown should have been its overt hero). After these white musicians were intimidated out of the business during the racial tension that followed Martin Luther King's assassination in 1968, Guralnick concentrates more on the politics and seems to lose interest in the music itself. -- Peter Brigdman for amazon.com [...]
    2002, nov 28; 21:33:
  • Dave Godin's Deep Soul Treasures: Taken From Our Vaults, Vol. 1 [IMPORT] - Various Artists [1CD, Amazon US]
    Worth the cover price for "It's Not That Easy" by Reuben Bell & The Casanovas alone. The haunting guitar figure and Reuben's heartfelt cries make this a must-hear when I've had a few. I'm sure you know what I mean. The rest of it is great too. It's almost unbelievable how much raw, unknown talent coursed through the veins of this great country of ours way back in the day. Thank God crazed obsessives like Sir Godin have devoted their lives and untold piles of cash to unearthing these unheard classics. -- Leslie for amazon.com [...]
    2002, nov 28; 00:10:
  • Skull Snaps [IMPORT][Amazon US]
    1. My Hang up Is You 2. Having You Around 3. Didn't I Do It to You 4. All of a Sudden 5. It's a New Day 6. I'm Your Pimp 7. I Turn My Back on Love 8. Trepasssing 9. I'm Falling Out of Love
    Is it for "It's a New Day" by any chance? If you don't have this, then click "Buy Now" and add one of the all-time classics to your collection. By itself, this fantastic tune justifies the price of admission. And if you're a beatmonger digging deeper? Weeeell.... the rest of this album is an enjoyable, if inessential, slice of soul'n'funk. You _can_ live without it. I guess it's a shame the enigmatic Skull Snaps never got more material onto disc. But when your only album includes one of eternity's phattest drum breaks, I'd say you've done enough already. a music fan for amazon.com [...]
    2002, nov 27; 23:51:
  • A Night in Tunisia [Blue Note] - Art Blakey [1 CD, Amazon US]
    It was not until listening to the title track of this recording (as well as John Coltrane's "Live at Birdland" which featured Sir Elvin Jones) that I understood that the creation of spatial polyrhythmic dimensions with percussion did not begin with Ginger Baker (or any other rock drummer) but rather with Jones and Art Blakey. Before this I assumed that most jazz drummers were simply there to mark time for the brass section. But drummers like Blakey, Jones, and even Max Roach were laying the foundations of what people would later call "hard rock". In the case of Blakey, the term given was "hard bop", but labels aside his drumming on this recording shows how a drummer can have voice without taking away from melody and rhythm. - Todd Ebert for amazon.com [...]
    2002, nov 27; 23:41:
  • Bluing: Miles Davis Plays the Blues - Miles Davis [1 CD, Amazon US]
    This compilation of classic Prestige tracks spans from 1951 to 1956 and focuses specifically on Davis's mixing of bebop's intricate rhythms and adventurous phrasing with traditional twelve-bar blues. Flanked by some of the best jazz men of the century (Art Blakey, Paul Chambers, John Coltrane, Thelonious Monk, Red Garland and Sonny Rollins among them), Davis blazes his way through these superb recordings with moods that alternate between the breakneck brilliance of "Blue n' Boogie" (replete with dazzlingly inventive solos by Davis and saxophonist Lucky Thomson) to the nonchalant cool of "Green Haze." Vibraharpist Milt Jackson's bright, swing-infected solos and Monk's trademark idiosyncracies create a nice counterpoint to Davis's astringent lines on tracks such as "Bag's Groove" and "Dr. Jackle." [...]
    2002, nov 24; 23:59:
    The Philly Sound was the era's touchstone. It divided rock from soul, and the '70s from the '60s. It carried the banner for black music in the popular imagination and received most of the flak. Like all innovatory styles its true importance was only apparent much later. When Danny Tenaglia and other superstar DJs cite "Love Is the Message" as the greatest record of all time they are being more than just nostalgic for the Loft or the Paradise Garage. They are paying homage to the centrality of Gamble and Huff to all club music that followed. They are also obliquely pointing to the fact that dancefloors were never again to be graced with music of such texture and beauty. -- Maurice Bottomley on http://www.popmatters.com/music/columns/bottomley/021002.shtml [...]
    2002, nov 24; 23:59:
  • The Originality of the Avant-Garde and Other Modernist Myths - Rosalind E. Krauss [1 book, Amazon US]
    As Hal foster... writes, miss Krauss cannot be blamed of the conceptual limitations of the time... if read within a historical context, this book Is very enlightning and very compromised with structural analisis, as it is with it's by- products (of wich, we often make so much of a deal these days) ... as it is with deconstructive readings. It seems to me that her efforts have not been scaled to the dimension they have. It is (still) a formidable introduction for anyone interested in really getting involved in post- structural thinking. I would even say... fundamental, to art practitioners and related. It should be taken,i believe, as a precious, self aware, golden thread for contemporary thinking. Her, "scupture on the expanded field", is illuminating, don't miss it. I really regret having rated "the optical unconscious" 4 stars, it must also be 5. Such risks taken by an art historian must not be taken lightly. She has taken first, as few others,the steps to construct--- the difference---, as they say. - Nicolas Ceron [...]
    2002, nov 24; 23:28:
  • Musical Reflections - Ron Trent [1 CD, Amazon US]
    Acclaimed UK label, R2 Records is proud to present Ron Trent 'Musical Reflections'. Ron has always had a unique vision integrating the links between the past, present, and future. Music Reflections connects classic artists like Herbie Hancock and James Mason alongside the current soul inspired offerings of 4Hero and At Jazz on to one cohesive album. Quality dance music from the soul is the thread running through this selection of hard to find and unreleased gems. [...]
    2002, nov 24; 23:19:
  • Simulacra and Simulation (The Body, in Theory: Histories of Cultural Materialism) - Jean Baudrillard [1 book, Amazon US]
    Yes "Similacra And Simulation" does appear in the Matrix. probably like the rest of you nuts, I ordered it on line the same night I slowed down that scene to see what Neo was reading in his "cave" and have read it a few times since.I'm wondering if anyone else noticed that the Directors, although perhaps influenced by this book, seemed more influenced by Platonic idealism and the Christ assention myth. Neo is the lone soul in the cave that goes into the light after years of feeling that something wasn't right in his guts and mind. With the help of his soon to be deciples he leaves the world of shadow and illusion for reality. One can also find the Christ myth in Neo's assention at the end of the film having been deemed "The One". Now getting back to the book. Neither Platonic idealism nor Christ-like assention jibe with the theory in S&S. B. claims that everything is a copy of a copy adinfinitum. Neo finds on the other hand that there IS a reality but that it needs uncovering. The Christ myth is a million mile away from being a posability in Baudrilliard's "world" where trancendence is impossible. Also if you read the essay "Crash" about Ballard's excellent 1973 novel you will find that B. would find "Matrix" in it's overall themes to be a bit old-school:

    "This is what distinguishes "Crash" from all science fiction...Which...still revolves around the old function/disfunction, which it projects into the future along the same lines of force and the same finalities that are those of the normal universe."

    Speaking of sci-fi, this reader's humble suggestion is to read Baudrilliard as such. - a reader for amazon.com

    2002, nov 24; 00:53:
  • Donnie Darko - Richard Kelly[1 DVD, Amazon US]
    This unclassifiable but stunningly original film obliterates the walls between teen comedy, science fiction, family drama, horror, and cultural satire--and remains wildly entertaining throughout. Jake Gyllenhaal (October Sky) stars as Donnie, a borderline-schizophrenic adolescent for whom there is no difference between the signs and wonders of reality (a plane crash that decimates his house) and hallucination (a man-sized, reptilian rabbit who talks to him). Obsessed with the science of time travel and acutely aware of the world around him, Donnie is isolated by his powers of analysis and the apocalyptic visions that no one else seems to share. The debut feature of writer-director Richard Kelly, Donnie Darko is a shattering, hypnotic work that sets its own terms and gambles--rightfully so, as it turns out--that a viewer will stay aboard for the full ride. --Tom Keogh [saw it on video tonight, recommended, best of 2001, with Mulholland Drive, The Others and Y Tu Mama Tambien][...]
    2002, nov 24; 00:49:
  • In The Court Of The Crimson King [1 CD, Amazon US]
    When King Crimson released In the Court of the Crimson King in 1969, a year after the band formed in London, the world discovered a music that has never gone away. At times, it is a rush of raw energy that mutates into an impossible balance of light and shade. This was the stuff of musicians who had no fear of stepping boldly into the unknown. Led by crafty guitarist Robert Fripp, who later added his own magic to Bowie's Heroes, King Crimson got big fast with this release. --Paul Clark [...]
    2002, nov 23; 21:51:
  • Dark Matter: A Century of Speculative Fiction from the African Diaspora - Sheree R. Thomas (Editor)[1 book, Amazon US]
    " Speculative fiction, fantasy, and science fiction are assumed to be the genres of alternative thought; however, too often these realms of imagination reflect only the Occidental vision and culture. Now an important new anthology, the first of its kind, explodes such preconceptions with more than a century of fantastic fiction by preeminent and emerging authors of the African diaspora, including recipients of literature's most prestigious awards. This richly vibrant collection of stories and essays displays the brilliance of writers ranging from the early pioneers, such as Charles W. Chestnutt, W. E. B. Du Bois, and George S. Schuyler, to Samuel R. Delany and Octavia E. Butler-whose classic sf became the springboards for their fame-to such renowned figures of the African American literary tradition as playwright-critic Amiri Baraka and satirist Ishmael Reed. DARK MATTER also highlights a wide spectrum of talents who have garnered both genre and mainstream acclaim, including Steven Barnes, Tananarive Due, Jewelle Gomez, Nalo Hopkinson, Walter Mosley, and Kalamu ya Salaam. [...]
    2002, nov 23; 19:50:
  • Empire - Michael Hardt, Antonio Negri[1 book, Amazon US]

    [...] Hardt and Negri maintain that empire--traditionally understood as military or capitalist might--has embarked upon a new stage of historical development and is now better understood as a complex web of sociopolitical forces. They argue, with a neo-Marxist bent, that "the multitude" will transcend and defeat the new empire on its own terms. The authors address everything from the works of Deleuze to Jefferson's constitutional democracy to the Chiapas revolution in a far-ranging analysis of our contemporary situation. Unfortunately, their penchant for references and academese sometimes renders the prose unwieldy. But if Hardt and Negri's vision of the world materializes, they will undoubtedly be remembered as prophetic. --Eric de Place [...]

    [...] Although written in the abstract language of the graduate seminar, Empire has an ominously pragmatic aim: to undermine faith in the liberal institutions that inform American democracy. It is a poisonous book whose ultimate goal is not to understand but to destroy society. Harvard University Press should be ashamed of publishing it. Sensible citizens should be alarmed that it is glorified by trendy intellectuals and the press. It is sometimes suggested that America’s culture wars are over. The adulation showered upon Empire and its authors, together with the horrible events of September 11, show that the real battles have yet to be joined. -- Roger Kimball [...]

    2002, nov 23; 17:05:
  • The Future of Ideas: The Fate of the Commons in a Connected World - Lawrence Lessig[1 book, Amazon US]
    If The Future of Ideas is bleak, we have nobody to blame but ourselves. Author Lawrence Lessig, a Stanford law professor and keen observer of emerging technologies, makes a strong case that large corporations are staging an innovation-stifling power grab while we watch idly. The changes in copyright and other forms of intellectual property protection demanded by the media and software industries have the potential to choke off publicly held material, which Lessig sees as a kind of intellectual commons. He eloquently and persuasively decries this lopsided control of ideas and suggests practical solutions that consider the rights of both creators and consumers, while acknowledging the serious impact of new technologies on old ways of doing business. His proposals would let existing companies make money without using the tremendous advantages of incumbency to eliminate new killer apps before they can threaten the status quo. Readers who want a fair intellectual marketplace would do well to absorb the lessons in The Future of Ideas. --Rob Lightner [...]
    2002, nov 23; 16:48:
  • Performing Rites: On the Value of Popular Music - Simon Frith [1 book, Amazon US]
    For some it's not only rock and roll, it's art. And being art, there simply must be some way--an aesthetic of rock--of judging and evaluating it. Buy into this theory, and you will want to wallow through rock critic-semiotician extraordinaire Frith's latest look at popular music and what it all means. Distinguishing between what's low and what's high--artwise, that is--Frith treads a narrow line between startling, cogent analysis and indulgent overexamination. As usual, his arguments are incredibly well footnoted, and the extensive index makes the book a useful reference as well as an engaging exploration of the meanings, overt and hidden, of popular music. Of course, while Frith's contentions and conclusions are thought provoking and insightful to those who share his fascination with pop culture, casual readers often find that his prose just gets in the way of the beat. After all, how much fun--how meaningful--is "Louie Louie" or "Peaches" if you have to be concerned with its cultural subtext? Although good for comprehensive pop culture collections, this may be a circulation underachiever for other libraries. Mike Tribby [...]
    2002, nov 23; 15:18:
  • Groucho and Me Groucho Marx[1 book, Amazon US]
    The funniest, most wildly entertaining thing I have ever read! Hefty, though very elegantly penned, it never "sounds" ghost-written one bit either. The pieces of folklore Groucho tells of will make 2001 America look like another planet altogether! But anyhow this book should be in every personal library (...or book case) and is indeed a pleasure to re-read as years go by. -- Gilbert Hétu for amazon.com [...]
    2002, nov 23; 14:47:
  • http://www.eng.umu.se/culturec/Default.htm Good website on cultural studies
    2002, nov 23; 14:42:
  • Feminism and Youth Culture: Second Edition - Angela McRobbie[1 book, Amazon US]
    In this new edition of Feminism and Youth Culture, Angela McRobbie explores furthur the cultural life of young women and girls. Her analyses illuminate broad questions of interest to readers on both sides of the Atlantic: the politics of feminist research, the relations of class and gender, the commodification of girls through such magazines as Elle, and the material lives of teenage mothers. For the second edition she has added several recent pieces, as well as a new introduction which considers how British women's lives have changed in the past twenty years. This edition also contains some of her earlier Birmingham School work, as well as what she has written with Sarah Thornton and with music critic Simon Frith. [...]
    2002, nov 23; 13:31:
  • Let It Blurt: The Life and Times of Lester Bangs, America's Greatest Rock Critic - Jim Derogatis[1 book, Amazon US]
    Let It Blurt is the raucous and righteous biography of Lester Bangs (1949-82)--the gonzo journalist, gutter poet, and romantic visionary of rock criticism. No writer on rock 'n' roll ever lived harder or wrote better--more passionately, more compellingly, more penetratingly. He lived the rock 'n' roll lifestyle, guzzling booze and Romilar like water, matching its energy in prose that erupted from the pages of Rolling Stone, Creem, and The Village Voice. Bangs agitated in the seventies for sounds that were harsher, louder, more electric, and more alive, in the course of which he charted and defined the aesthetics of heavy metal and punk. He was treated as a peer by such brash visionaries as Lou Reed, Patti Smith, Richard Hell, Captain Beefheart, The Clash, Debbie Harry, and other luminaries.

    [...]From 225 interview contributions (from friends, rivals, enemies, exes and passing pundits), DeRogatis boils out only endless glum details of lovelife, alco-binges, body odour. As a book about a writer, Let It Blurt sucks. Glibly dividing the rockwrite world into Chinstrokers and Noiseboys (not to say thinkers and thugs)[...] Mark Sinker in http://web.pitas.com/tashpile/ -- [...]

    2002, nov 23; 12:31:
  • From Dawn to Decadence: 500 Years of Western Cultural Life - Jacques Barzun [1 book, Amazon US]
    In the last half-millennium, as the noted cultural critic and historian Jacques Barzun observes, great revolutions have swept the Western world. Each has brought profound change--for instance, the remaking of the commercial and social worlds wrought by the rise of Protestantism and by the decline of hereditary monarchies. And each, Barzun hints, is too little studied or appreciated today, in a time he does not hesitate to label as decadent. --Gregory McNamee [recommended by Michel Bauwens]
    2002, nov 20; 22:34:
  • Joy Division - Closer [1 CD, Amazon US]
    In retrospect, the second and final album by this Manchester postpunk band seems to point straight at singer Ian Curtis's suicide, which happened a few months before it was released. The band's reverberating mesh of minor-key lines and Curtis's tremorous bass voice are doomy enough on their own, and attention to the words reveals references to blacker-than-black stories by J.G. Ballard and Joseph Conrad; the void and its terrors were splitting Curtis apart from the inside. "I put my trust in you," he sings, and his voice leaves no doubt that that trust has been betrayed. But the music, grim and powerful as it is, points to the direction the surviving members took as New Order, incorporating the mechanical gravity of club rhythms. --Douglas Wolk [sold a copy of it via amazon yesterday] [...]
    2002, nov 20; 23:04:
  • Da Capo Best Music Writing 2002: The Year's Finest Writing on Rock, Pop, Jazz, Country, & More [1 book, Amazon US]
    In this collection of 28 excellent essays-penned by some of the usual suspects (Greil Marcus, Simon Reynolds) as well as upstarts (Kate Sullivan, Kelefa Sanneh)-editor Lethem (Motherless Brooklyn) more than achieves his goal of producing "a book of encounters... an invitation to an impossible, gabbling conversation, a party line, where every voice is unforgettable." While the book's subtitle is perhaps misleading and overly ambitious (there are no essays on classical music, blues or reggae, and only a couple on jazz and country), there is barely a weak essay in the collection. David Gates on the improbable 2001 mania for bluegrass legend Ralph Stanley, Lenny Kaye's powerful and maudlin-free obituary/tribute to Joey Ramone and Steve Erickson's idiosyncratic "Top 100" songs related to his beloved Los Angeles are among the stronger entries. This volume also takes a few risks that more than pay off: selecting the Onion's fake news reports titled "God Finally Gives Shout-Out Back to All His Niggaz" and "Marilyn Manson Now Going Door-to-Door Trying To Shock People" not only provides hilarious counterpoint to many of the book's heartfelt essays but also poignantly illuminates just how much musical trends define the general culture at large. [...]
    2002, nov 20; 22:34:
  • Sweetheart of the Rodeo - The Byrds [1 CD, Amazon US]
    After Chris Hillman dragged new friend Gram Parsons into the Byrds, they made an album as close to a country masterpiece as a rock act could ever make. In fact, the only tunes better than the definitive covers here of songs by Bob Dylan ("You Ain't Going Nowhere"), Guthrie ("Pretty Boy Floyd"), and the Louvin Brothers ("The Christian Life") are Parsons's originals, especially the incomparable "Hickory Wind." Sweetheart wasn't the first country-rock album, but with its gorgeous three-way harmonies and sweet pedal steel, it remains the best. --David Cantwell [Came out in 1968, I LOVE this album. [...]
    2002, nov 20; 00:32:
  • Clicks and CUts - Various Artists[1 CD, Amazon US]
    Starting with Warp's Artificial Intelligence releases, the compilation CD has become to electronic music what the 7-inch single was for indie rock, and Mille Plateaux's compilations have been of consistently high quality. As the liner notes for this one succinctly put it, "You have come here, you must think about minimalism." There's quite a variety of minimalism on display: the highly melodic but still mind-bendingly strange work of Wolfgang Voigt (calling himself All here, better known as Gas); an austerely beautiful Ester Brinkmann track; the subtly propulsive rhythms of Frank Bretschneider and Farben; and edgy, bordering on grating pieces from Kid 606 and Kit Clayton (two of a handful of Americans in an otherwise heavily Northern European crowd). The sonic density and style varies from one track to another, but they are all minimal to the extent that each attains cruising altitude within the first minute or so, letting the listener choose whether the resulting state of mind is one he or she would like to be in for the next four to five minutes. Although the aesthetic unity of the collection is its intent, the CDs do serve as a useful consumer guide, giving a good introduction to many names that may be familiar but are often attached to pricey imports. --Bob Bannister [...], [...]
    2002, nov 20; 00:02:
  • http://ilx.wh3rd.net/thread.php?msgid=3136411
    Interesting thread on ILM:
    Theo Parrish and Moodymann are African Americans
    Akufen and Vladislav Delay are Caucasian Europeans
    2002, nov 20; 00:28:
  • Stupid White Men ...and Other Sorry Excuses for the State of the Nation! - Michael Moore [1 book, Amazon US]
    [Amazon sales rank 22, Nov 2002]
    Stupid White Men, Michael Moore's screed against "Thief-in-Chief" George Bush's power elite, hit No. 1 at Amazon.com within days of publication. Why? It's as fulminating and crammed with infuriating facts as any right-wing bestseller, as irreverent as The Onion, and as noisily entertaining as a wrestling smackdown. Moore offers a more interesting critique of the 2000 election than Ralph Nader's Crashing the Party (he argued with Nader, his old boss, who sacked him), and he's serious when he advocates ousting Bush. But Moore's rage is outrageous, couched in shameless gags and madcap comedy: "Old white men wielding martinis and wearing dickies have occupied our nation's capital.... Launch the SCUD missiles! Bring us the head of Antonin Scalia!... We are no longer [able] to hold free and fair elections. We need U.N. observers, U.N. troops." Moore's ideas range from on-the-money (Arafat should beat Sharon with Gandhi's nonviolent shame tactics) to over-the-top: blacks should put inflatable white dolls in their cars so racist cops will think they're chauffeurs; the ever-more-Republicanesque Democratic Party should be sued for fraud; "no contributions toward advancing our civilization ever came out of the South [except Faulkner, Hellman, and R.J. Reynolds]," because it's too hot to think straight there; Korean dictator Kim Jong-il "has got to broaden himself beyond porn and John Wayne" by watching better movies, like Dude, Where's My Car? (which contains "all you need to know about America"). Whatever your politics, Stupid White Men should make you blow your stack. --Tim Appelo [...]
    2002, nov 19; 23:06:
  • Irreversible [Soundtrack] [1 CD, Amazon US]
    One half of Daft Punk scores this original soundtrack for the motion picture that is arguably the most controversial film to be screened at the Cannes Film Festival ever. Due to the scandal atmosphere that surrounds this movie, Irreversible is by far the most awaited French film this year. Apart from the big hype around it, Irreversible truly has some artistic credibility, it was directed by Gaspard Noe & features cult actors Monica Bellucci & Vincent Cassel. Like the film itself the soundtrack is dark, but reflects a strong sense of estheticism & ...provocation. Thomas Bangalter (Daft Punk) created 9 new tracks in some kind of a minimalist cyber punk vein! To these creations he added 4 tracks from the wicked Roule EP's 'Tracks On The Rock' 1 & 2 & 'Spinal Scratch' (unreleased on CD).
    2002, nov 19; 22:40:
  • Keith Hudson - Pick A Dub[1 CD, Amazon US]
    One of reggae's greatest innovative spirits, Keith Hudson not only produced distinctive and very strong rhythms, employing the Barrett brothers and the Soul Syndicate, but on Pick A Dub mixed what were already fairly sparse tracks down to their bare essentials, without losing any of their musical qualities. Rhythms that are original to Hudson - including Big Youth's "S-90 Skank" and Horace Andy & Earl Flute's "Don't Think About Me" - sit easily alongside his strong interpretations of the Abbysinians' roots anthems, "Satta Massa Gana" and "Declaration Of Rights". - from Reggae : The Rough Guide [a Keith Hudson album was recently sold on ebay for €570] [...]
    2002, nov 19; 20:25:
  • Nietzsche and Philosophy - Gilles Deleuze,[1 book, Amazon US]
    Demonstrates how Nietzsche initiated a new mode of philosophical thinking. First published in 1962, this landmark book is one of the first to dispute the deep-seated assumption that dialectics provides the only possible basis for radical thought.
    This is a classic, bitterly controversial study. Along with Klossowski's writings, it almost singlehandedly revolutionized Nietzsche studies in the early 1960s. -- In One Ear Out Your Mother for amazon.com [...], [...]
    2002, nov 19; 19:55:
  • Time's Arrow: Or the Nature of the Offense - Martin Amis [1 book, Amazon US]
    [I have read this, one of my alltime favourite books]
    "Make no mistake, this book is weird. Amis maintains the backwards motif scrupulously, with dialogues printed in reverse order (Amis' one concession to the reader is to render the individual sentences forward) and every event described backwards. For instance: to eat, "You select a soiled dish, collect some scraps from the garbage, and settle down for a short wait. Various items get gulped up into my mouth, and after skillful massage with tongue and teeth I transfer them to the plate for additional sculpture with knife and fork and spoon." a reader for amazon.com [...], [...]
    2002, nov 18; 23:43:
  • Armand Van Helden - 2 Future 4 U [1CD, Amazon US]
    2Future4U is the first commercial full length release for Armand Van Helden. The featured single "U Don't Know Me" hit #1 in the U.K. sales and dance charts. Born out of his love of hip hop, each Armand Van Helden track carries his signature rugged, with a rough around the edge finish. It underpins the album, especially in tracks like "Alienz" and "Mother Earth". But there's a lighter side too, reflected by his choice of vocalists. Long-time friend Duane Harden carries "U Don't Know Me' and the visionary "Flowerz" is fronted by Roland Clark from Garage legends Urban Soul. [...]
    2002, nov 18; 23:37:
  • Basslines - Various Artists[1CD, Amazon US]
    1. Sugar Is Sweeter [Armand Van Helden Mix] - CJ Bolland 2. Hideaway 998 [187 Lockdown Hidden Vocal Dub] - De'Lacy 3. Burnin' Up - Wild Cat 4. Rip Groove - Double 99 5. Ultrafunkula - Urban Funk 6. Line [Loop Da Loop Gangster House Mix] - Lisa Stansfield 7. Move You Body [DJ Jean & Peran Speed Garage Mix] 8. Love Commandments - Gisele Jackson 9. Kick the Party into Full Effect - Ruff Da Menace 10. Bassline 11. New Generation [Ruff Da'Dub Mix] - The Dance Federation [...]
    2002, nov 18; 22:24:
    Offered my first item for auction at ebay today:
    my address on ebay:
    2002, nov 18; 22:24:
  • Moondog - Sax for a Pack [Amazon US]
    The first new music from Moondog, nee Louis Hardin, in more than 20 years, Sax Pax for A Sax is probably the best introduction to the work of this eccentric former street musician. A joyous outburst, Sax Pax touches on influences ranging from Miles Davis' groundbreaking "Birth of the Cool," sessions ("Dog Trot"), medieval motets ("Tout Suite No. 1 in F Major"), and bebop's harmonic innovations ("Bird's Lament" and "Present for the Prez"). There's even a male chorus showing up occasionally, sounding like they stepped out of a Busby Berkely musical as they jauntily sing the praises of Paris, New York, and London. But the music's precise counterpoint and buoyant inventiveness could only be Moondog; listen and be enthralled. --Steven Mirkin [This is where Mr Scruff sampled "Move On" from] [...]
    2002, nov 18; 22:11:
  • Moondog - Moondog [Amazon US] Some artists are just so unique that it's hard to pin them down or make some kind of comparison to them. Louis Hardin (aka Moondog) is just this kind of artist. He's been active for over a half a century with everyone from symphony orchestras to Janis Joplin and Julie Andrews (yes, the actress!) performing his work. His work includes orchestra and small combo compositions, poetry, theology (as you'll see below) and theory. -- Jason Gross [...]
    2002, nov 18; 21:00:
  • Pixies - Surfer Rosa [1 CD, Amazon US]
    [just before I left for China, living with Frank and Annick]
    Before the Breeders and Frank Black, there was this Boston quartet, playing hardcore's rush and terseness against the acoustic grit and the minor-key flourish of Latin pop. Their first full-length album is their starkest, harsh and trebly, with the drums right in your face, and songs edited to eliminate any note that's not absolutely necessary. Singer Black Francis yelping away about destroyed bodies and the river Euphrates, alternately acting cryptic and crazed. Kim Deal, then calling herself "Mrs. John Murphy," contributes the highlight, "Gigantic," a creepy anthem about childhood voyeurism. The playing is snarly and tricky but unfailingly tuneful, and the hooks come out of nowhere, hiding behind the noise, and bite down hard. --Douglas Wolk [...] [...]
    2002, nov 18; 21:00:
  • DANCE FOR LIFE West End Records celebrates the 10th Anniversary Of LIFEbeat [1 CD, Amazon US]
    1. Thank You [Power of Love] [Blaze’s Shelter Remix] (Marty Thomas) 2. Kind Of Life [Kind Of Love] [Masters At Work’s MAW Dubb] (North End) 3. Another Man [Junior Vasquez’ Discoverse Remix] (Barbara Mason) 4. Changin’ [Ralphi Rosario’s Full On Vox Mix] (Linda Clifford) 5. Resurrect Me [Lift Me Up] [Timmy Regisford’s Shelter Remix] (Marty Thomas) 6. Heartbeat [A Touch of Class Class-ic Vocal Mix] (Taana Gardner) 7. Work That Body [Angel Moraes’ Workin’ Remix] (Taana Gardner) 8. Give Your Body Up [to the Music] [Danny Tenaglia’s New Generation Mix] (Billy Nichols) 9. Resurrect Me [Lift Me Up] [Hex’s Live Vibe Dub] (Marty Thomas) 10. Let’s Go Dancin’ [Junior Vasquez’s Discoverse Remix] (Sparque) [...]
    2002, nov 17; 23:23:
  • Fucking Amal, Show Me Love - Lukas Moodysson [1 DVD, Amazon US]
    Åmål is a small insignificant town where nothing ever happens, where the latest trends are out of date when they get there. Young Elin has a bit of a bad reputation when it comes to guys, but the fact is that she has never done *it*. Another girl in her school, Agnes, is in love with her but is too shy to do anything about it. For different reasons, Elin ends up at Agnes' birthday party as the only guest. They have a girl's night out together but after that Elin desperately avoids Agnes, refusing to even consider her own homosexuality. [incredibly well done feelgood movie about two girls in love] [...]
    2002, nov 17; 21:59:
  • The Quick and the Dead: Artists and Anatomy - Deanna Petherbridge, Ludmilla Jordanova [1 CD, Amazon US]
    The human body has long been central to Western art, and in order to represent the body in all its manifestations many artists have studied anatomy: dissecting the dead to better depict the living. The Quick and the Dead focuses on a range of artists, among them Leonardo da Vinci, Michelangelo Buonarroti, Albrecht Drer, William Hogarth, George Stubbs, Thodore Gricault, Kiki Smith, Joel-Peter Witkin, and Cindy Sherman to show the great richness and complexity that can result when art and science intersect. The drawings, prints, photographs, and objects in this book span five centuries and mark numerous cultural shifts, yet their imagery is as powerful today as when it was created. Bodily representation has shadowed Western art since the High Renaissance, particularly in the form of atlases of anatomical prints, detailed drawings, and wax cadavers used for teaching purposes. Studying anatomy was deemed so essential that it was part of the instruction program in the earliest Italian academies. Now contemporary artists interested in cultural constuctions of the body are reinvigorating the subject, with the fragmentation of human form being a prime concern. Since 1858, Gray's Anatomy has served to legitimize notions of "serious" science unchallenged by the frivolity of art. But in recent years a kind of rapprochement between medical history and cultural theory has occurred, and new medical technologies have become a wellspring for artists as well as for doctors. As The Quick and the Dead makes clear, the human bodysymbolic and intimate, material and sacredis a vital cultural resource and a site where various social constituencies find relevant meaning. [...]
    2002, nov 17; 15:02:
  • Journeys by DJ, Desert Island Mix - Gilles Peterson [1 CD, Amazon US]
    1. Dingwalls - Mark Murphy 2. What's Wrong With Groovin' - Letta Mbulu 3. Comfy Club - Pnu Riff 4. Submersible - Juryman vs. Spacer 5. Love Supreme - Ballistic Brothers 6. Yves Eaux - Buscemi 7. Fedime's Flight - Jazzanova 8. One Starry Night - Kevin Yost 9. Carnival Supreme - Los Quatros Diablos 10. Gabriel - Roy Davis Jr feat. Peven Everett 11. My Beat - Blaze 12. Jazz With Altitude - Bel-Air Project 13. Breakbeat Terror - Breakbeat Era 14. It's Jazzy - Roni Size 15. Disorientation - Priest 16. Ding Ding Ding - I-Cube 17. Wondering - Drop Zone Productions 18. Black Gold of The Sun - Rotary Connection [...]
    2002, nov 17; 14:29:
  • The Brazilian Sound: Samba, Bossa Nova, and the Popular Music of Brazil - Chris McGowan, Ricardo Pessanha [1 book, Amazon US]
    You could fill a book with all the information I _don't_ know about Brazilian music... In fact, these guys already have! Concise, conversational, informative and very well laid out, this is an exceptionally readable book. Chapters on samba, bossa nova, tropicalia, forro and jazz include focused biographical sketches of dozens of key artists, as well as succinct historical information about the progress of Brazilian music from its European and African folk roots into its bewildering and often beautiful modern offshoots. The book's focus is nonpartisan: although there is plenty of room for aesthetic criticism within the various styles, the authors generally hold their preferences and dislikes to themselves. They do, however, give readers a good sense of which recordings might be best to check out -- an invaluable service considering how little of Brazil's vast musical output makes it to the United States. Highly recommended! Certainly the best English-language guide to Brazilian pop that you will find in print (online is a different matter), this is great for casual listeners and hardcore fans alike. -- Joe Sixpack for amazon.com
    2002, nov 17; 14:24:
  • Millions Now Living Will Never Die - Tortoise [1 CD, Amazon US]
    Tortoise's sophomore release, Millions Now Living Will Never Die shows off an unlikely blossoming of talent. The Chicago instrumental band makes clear with Millions what their eponymous debut brushed in broad strokes: this is the musical legacy of the ties between experimental art music and postpunk. The sonic environments are entirely woven from percussion, basses, and occasional keyboards--all of it thrown through the blender of electronic sampling and manipulation at various points. Hypnotic, some would say, and an attempt at mirroring Steve Reich or even Can, others would note. But Tortoise demonstrate their singular vision, one that would spawn many more all-instrumental alt-rock visions. Dub bass hints, keyboard darts and dashes, strange flashes of heartbeat rhythms--it all comes together on Millions in a manner that's hard to forget and easy to dive through. --Andrew Bartlett
    2002, nov 17; 13:59:
  • Joyce - The Essential Joyce 1970-1996 [1 CD, Amazon US]
    Guitarist/vocalist Joyce came up through the ranks in the late '60s, and toured with bossa nova legend Vinicius de Moraes during the mid-'70s. Her own albums consistently nudged MPB in the direction of the booming U.S. jazz fusion scene, and helped expand the Brazilian jazz vocabulary. Although a lot of her work is pretty cheesy, I'm quite a fan. [...]
    2002, nov 16; 12:27:
  • Hypercity - Andrew Weatherall [1 CD, Amazon US]

    Another mix disc by aficionado Andrew Weatherhall of Two Lone Swordsmen and Sabres of Paradise? Sign me up. Hold on, it's a stirred together collection of Germany's Force Inc and their sub-labels recent output (it appears). Meaning intricate, imminently danceable techno-meets-house is on order today, not the kind of music to grab the spotlight and run with it, but aptly suited to command your spirit all the same.

    M.R.I.'s 'To Be Honest' is a prime example of the operandi, with structured, building layers of muted drums and whispers, buried click-pops among the other surprises to peel back upon subsequent listens. Crane A.K.'s 'Polsterplanet' rides a shimmering synth over darting hi-hats while Safety Scissors' 'Form From Morf' seemingly spins back and forward sample snippets for a cool brain twister. Dirk Diggler's 'Silverfinger' is spot-on spatial minimalism dropping the pace before, by golly, an actual full-blown song ('Tessio' by Vladislav Delay alias Luomo) ends the glide on a warm, fuzzy note.

    There's not a bad track in the lot, and don't sweat the artist anonymity; if you recognize more than three anyway, it's time to join me in Music Junkies Anonymous. The term Intelligent Dance Music (IDM) having long been co-opted by the laptop warriors of the world and their fan base, I'm tempted to demand a moniker recall. 'Hypercity' truly represents music designed for the hips and aimed at your head, while leaving the spastic, glitch-probing on the hard drive. Richard Diaz for amazon.com [...]

    2002, nov 16; 12:23:
  • Rhythmogenesis - M.R.I. [1 CD, Amazon US]
    MRI is a relatively new outfit composed of Germans Frank Elting and Stephan Lieb, and this full length does an excellent job of establishing them in the current minimal tech-house scene. Most of the track on the album are over 8 minutes long and develop very well through dreamy chords, delayed synth-lines, deep bass, and quirky samples. Any fan of Basic Channel, Richie Hawtin, Theorem, Sutekh, Kit Clayton, Vladislav Delay, or Thomas Brinkmann will rank this album as a top of 2000. [...]
    2002, nov 16; 12:07:
  • Vocal City - Luomo [1 CD, Amazon US]
    Luomo is the newest alias of the artist known best as Vladislav Delay, whose austerely minimalist dub-influenced tech-house is the stock in trade of the Chain Reaction and (to a lesser extent) Mille Plateaux labels. The extent to which fans of that sound are interested in this release should be partly the extent to which their tastes extend to the application of that aesthetic to vocal house-music tracks, which is what Mille Plateaux's Force Tracks imprint was created to explore. Although the more abstract house producers have often treated singers as source material hardly different from the electronic elements of the mix, the notion that vocals represent a "human" element, or at least a connection to the world of song, is hard to shake. Luomo may indeed shake you of that idea, as the vocals are just another one of the many layers on these dense tracks, often not appearing until after many minutes of slow accretion of sounds, at which time a few words or phrases are electronically processed and looped endlessly. All of which makes the track "Tessio" even more startling, when a full-fledged multi-voiced R&B song worthy of the Paradise Garage suddenly appears. Even from a musician who has been heading in a half-dozen directions at once over the past year, this is quite a surprising release. -Bob Bannister [...]
    2002, nov 16; 10:36:
  • First Album - Miss Kittin & the Hacker [1 CD, Amazon US]
    Kittin, a former French pole dancer, and Hacker, a one-time hardcore headbanger, combine forces in a decidedly sleazy niche, but it does make for disarmingly catchy music. Its simple New Wave synth beats and Kittin's (a.k.a. Caroline Herve) deadpan delivery make it easy to imagine you're lounging in a Eurotrash strip joint, circa 1977, as scantily clad dominatrixes torture willing customers. The 1997 single "Frank Sinatra" is more shocking for its spot-on electro atmospherics than for its lyrics, proving that Hacker's punk years were a valuable tutorial for success 2002-style. Throughout, Hacker spins weird little theramin squirms, horror halo tones, and chunky beatbox handclaps, while Kittin discourses about trading sex for cash ("Stock Exchange"), ambitious disco queens ("Nurse"), and, of course, the burlesque life ("Stripper"). First Album is really a one-song affair, but its alluring message is so kitschy, kinked, and campy, the song never sounds the same. --Ken Micallef [...]
    2002, nov 15; 23:03:
  • Kissin Time - Marianne Faithfull [1 CD, Amazon US]
    Marianne Faithfull is still more famous in some circles for whom she slept with in the 1960s than for her talents as singer and lyricist. Kissin' Time centers on that unjust state of affairs and consequently smells not of roses, but stale perfume, spilt gin, and sex. The result is one of her best albums. Comprised of collaborations with the likes of Beck, Blur, Pulp, Billy Corgan, and Dave Stewart, Kissin' Time serves up everything from spiky electro-pop (Beck's superb "Sex with Strangers") to Tom Waits-lite (Blur's rather self-conscious title track). "Song for Nico" is a no-punches-pulled ballad to the Velvet Underground chanteuse, while the magnificent "Sliding Through Life on Charm" finds Pulp providing the perfect backdrop for a hilariously filthy autobiographical screed. Faithfull's cracked growl and painfully personal lyrics are an acquired taste. But if you can deal with sexual and emotional honesty, as well as deliberately eclectic tunes and textures, you'll be treated to bold, bitter, and elegantly profane pop art. --Garry Mulholland
    2002, nov 15; 22:08:
  • Connect - Mark Farina [1 CD, Amazon US]
    1. Intro 2. Boca De Bon Do Neon - Latin Impressions 3. Salsa Fresca - Mustafa 4. Future Signs - Swirl People 5. Work It Out - Joshua 6. Rise (Jam Version) - Kenny Carvajal 7. You Suck - Avondale Music Society 8. Set It On Fire - Martin Venetjoki 9. Vuelve A Casa - Halo, Penn & Chus 10. Seven Of Nine - Andrew Macari 11. Jiffy Pop - Brett Johnson 12. Radio - Mark Farina 13. Yokoona Skateboard 2 - Diz 14. Don't Let Anyone - Kicksquad and Onlymatt 15. Right On (Can 7" Remix) - Silicone Soul 16. A Brighter Day - Kaskade 17. With You - Sirus [...]
    2002, nov 15; 21:42:
  • Mix-Up Vol.5 - Derrick May [1 CD, Amazon US]
    1 Derrick May - Intro 2 Fruit Loops - The Message Is Love 3 Earth People - Dance 4 The Groove Essentials - Make Up Your Mind 5 Lil' Louis - French Kiss (9:53) 6 House Proud People - Lonely Disco Dancer 7 Scuba - You Are My Heaven 8 DJ Sneak - Soundz In My Head 9 New Soul Fusion - Prelude 10 Paul Johnson - A Little Suntin Suntin 11 House Of Jazz Feat. Ladina Whitfield - Time Out For Love 12 Green Velvet - The Preacher Man (8.25) 13 Gene Farris - Cosmic Coast 14 The Hayden Andre Project - Tribal Life 15 Kramer Dashwood - What Has Been Joined By God 16 Jeff Mills - Alarm 17 Phuture - Spank-Spank (4:58) 18 DJ Milton - 1999 19 Designer Music - Good Girls 20 Club MCM - Club MCM (K.A. Happy Mix) 21 Jeff Mills - Masterplan 22 Foundation Sound Works - Serial Operations 23 Jeff Mills - The Dancer 24 Freaks - Mindless Funk 25 Styles Of The Abstract - Fructose 26 Convextion - Convextion 27 Substance - Relish (7:32) 28 Basement Jaxx - Get Down Get Horny 29 Aubrey - Shimmer 30 Jibaros - Nite Drive 31 Basement Jaxx - Eu Nao featuring Adrianna Montero 32 Silent Phase - Meditive Fusion (Kenny Larkin Mix) remix by Kenny Larkin [...]
    2002, nov 13; 00:13:
  • Critique of Cynical Reason (Theory and History of Literature, Vol 40) - Peter Sloterdijk, et al [1 book, Amazon US]
    [recommended by Luc Spruyt]

    Sloterdijk, a German philosopher and cultural critic, is a brilliant writer on all aspects of the human conditions, from the beginnings of life formation to recent gene manipulation. In the English-speaking world he is best known for his Critique of Cynical Reason (1987) which established him as a leading voice for a generation of post-modern intellectuals. Fiercely independent of both leftist and conservative viewpoints, Sloterdijk diagnosed the malaise of modern society and its cynical mindset, and argued for a return to Greek kynicism in its original meaning as a strategy of resistance.

    In his writings of the last decade Sloterdijk has explored fundamental questions about the origin of life, the concept of soul and how we define the human body in an age of gene technology. Recently he has set off a storm of debate in Europe with his theses Regeln für den Menschenpark ( Rules for the Human Park) on the possibilities of manipulating life.

    Peter Sloterdijk, born in 1947, is Professor for Asthetics and Philosophy at the Hochschule für Gestaltung, Karslruhe. He holds a doctorate in German literature from the University of Hamburg and is an expert on the autobiographical literature of the Weimar Republic.

    See also: Peter Sloterdijk

    2002, nov 12; 23:30:
  • http://www.rockcritics.com/Disco_Crits_Intro1.html
    Writing About Dancing: Disco Critics Survey (Five Writers--Chuck Eddy, Michael Freedberg, Frank Kogan, Simon Reynolds & Tricia Romano--do a little dance and answer a bunch of questions) [03/05/01]
    2002, nov 12; 22:27:
  • Games People Play: The Psychology of Human Relationships - Eric, M.D. Berne [1 book, Amazon US]
    [recommended by Luc Spruyt] I was first noticed this book when my former wife's father gave it to her as a pre-wedding gift. Seven years later, after we seperated, I noticed the book on the shelf with a bookmark in it. Opening it brought me to the bookmark and the game called 'Frigid Woman'. Within minutes, I realized the last year we were together was word for word what Mr. Berne described in his book. Eventually I realized that she was using the knowledge contained in the book to manipulate our relationship. If you buy this book, use it for good. As they say, 'The Force is a powerful ally. Do not succumb to the dark side.' [...]
    2002, nov 12; 00:42:
  • Theodor Adorno - Essays on Music [1 book, Amazon US]
    Almost everyone agrees that his essay on jazz (where he attacks popular music with a snobbish contempt matched only by his ignorance of the subject) is embarrassing
    -- [...]
    2002, nov 09; 11:14:
  • Shall we Dansu? [1 VHS, Amazon US]
    On his evening commute, bored accountant Sugiyama (Koji Yakusho) always looks for the beautiful woman who gazes wistfully out the window of the Kishikawa School of Dancing. One night he gets off the train, walks into the studio, and signs up for a class. Soon Sugiyama is so engrossed in his dancing he practices his steps on the train platform and under his desk, and becomes good enough for competition, compelling his wife to hire a private investigator to find out why he stays out late and returns home smelling of perfume. Among the colorful characters Sugiyama meets is his coworker Aoki (Naoto Takenaka), who transforms himself from geeky systems analyst to hilariously flamboyant (and bad-wigged) lounge lizard. Aoki explains to Sugiyama, "When I finish work, put on the clothes, the wig and become Donny Burns, Latin world champion, and I start to move to the rhythm, I'm so happy, so completely free." Here lies the chief charm of Shall We Dance, the contrast between the ultracompetitive women of the studio--including the one who caught Sugiyama's eye, Mai (Tamiyo Kusakari)--and the men who dance simply because they enjoy it. This 1996 film is somewhat comparable to the flamboyant Aussie favorite Strictly Ballroom, but Shall We Dance is especially noteworthy for contrasting the boldness of social dance with the buttoned-up societal mores of Japan, where people avoid public displays of emotion. Even in Japan, the joy of dance is irresistible. --David Horiuchi
    2002, nov 09; 10:33:
  • Magnolia - P.T. Anderson [1 DVD, Amazon US]
    This third feature from Paul Thomas Anderson (Boogie Nights) is a maddening, magnificent piece of filmmaking, and it's an ensemble film to rank with the best of Robert Altman--every little piece of the film means something, and it's solidly there for a reason. Deftly juggling a breathtaking ensemble of actors, Anderson crafts a tale of neglectful parents, resentful children, and love-starved souls that's amazing in scope, both thematically and emotionally. Part of the charge of Magnolia is seeing exactly how may characters Anderson can juggle, and can he keep all those balls in air (indeed he can, even if it means throwing frogs into the mix). And it's been far too long since we've seen a filmmaker whose love of making movies is so purely joyful, and this electric energy is reflected in the actors, from Cruise's revelatory performance to Reilly's quietly powerful turn as the moral center of the story. While at three hours it's definitely not suited to everyone's taste, Magnolia is a compelling, heartbreaking, ultimately hopeful mediation on the accidents of chance that make up our lives. Featuring eight wonderful songs by Aimee Mann, including "Save Me." --Mark Englehart [...]
    2002, nov 07; 21:24:
    Article on Arthur Russell, by Jess Harvell
    http://www.freakytrigger.co.uk/russell.html, written by Jess Harvell
    [...]In 1979 discophobia was at its peak; legendary xenophobe and DJ Steve Dahl led his anti-disco hordes in the infamous "Disco Demolition Derby." The image of rock fans so rabid to destroy a form of music that was "artificial" and "alien" to them would smack of the worst kinds of racism, homophobia, and provincialism today. (And if it wasn't exactly the "dance der Mussolini" then, it was close enough.) But so it was, throughout the vast sweep between the Appalachians and the Rockies. (And not a few people on the coasts either; Lester Bangs, godfather of all things punk rock, memorably described the music as "dead enough to suggest the end of popular music as anything other than bugspray.") [...]
    2002, nov 07; 21:24:
  • Abstract Funk Theory - Carl Craig [1 CD, Amazon US]
    1. Atomic Dog - George Clinton 2. Mesopotamia - B52s 3. Shari Vari - A Number Of Names 4. Alleys Of Your Mind - Cybotron 5. Technicolor - Channel One 6. Forcefield - Reese And Santonio 7. Night Drive - Model 500 8. Lets Go - X-Ray 9. Galaxy - B F C 10. The Dance - Rhythm Is Rhythm [...]
    2002, nov 07; 21:24:
  • 9-11 - Noam Chomsky [1 book, Amazon US]
    In this series of interviews conducted by fawning journalists, Chomsky does the following things: (1) lambaste the US incessantly for past military interventions, (2) analyze the causes of the attacks of 9/11 and (3) suggest that the US seek justice by proper, legal means instead of by military action. -- Edward Lee for amazon.com
    2002, nov 07; 21:11:
  • Journeys By DJ: 70 Minutes of Madness - Coldcut [1 CD, Amazon US]
    1. Bola - Philorene 2. Street Beats, Vol. 2 3. One Blood - Junior Reid 4. Jam on Revenge (The Wikki Wikki Song) - Newcleus 5. Extreme Possibilities [Wagon Christ Remix] - 2 Player 6. King Ashabanapal [Dillinja Mix] - Funki Porcini 7. Noddy Holder - Jedi Knights 8. Fuk - Plastikman 9. Mo Beats - Coldcut 10. Manganese in Deep Violet - Bedouin Ascent 11. African Drug - Bob Holroyd 12. If There Was No Gravity - Air Liquide 13. Beats and Pieces - Coldcut 14. Greedy Beat - Coldcut 15. Music Maker - Coldcut 16. Find a Way [Acapella] - Queen Latifah 17. King of the Beats - Mantronix 18. Mag - Gescom 19. Blood Vibes [Kenny Dope Mix] - Masters at Work 20. Trumpet Riff 21. Luke Slater's 7th Plain 22. First Time I Ever Saw Your Face - Joanna Law 23. Balthus Bemused 24. Into the 90's - Photek 25. Bridge Is Over - BDP Posse 26. Nu Blud - DJ Food 27. Friendly Pressure [Acapella] - Jhelisa 28. Freshmess [Bandulu Mix] 29. Message from Our Sponsor 30. Unify - Pressure Drop 31. Again Son 32. Hot Flush - Red Snapper 33. Theme from Dr. Who 34. Free - Moody Boyz 35. Dusk - DJ Food
    Coldcut's 70 Minutes of Madness is widely credited as 'the best DJ mix album of all time'. Blending funk, hip-hop, techno and just about everything else, the album rewrote the rulebook on mixes, clearly defining trip hop along the way. The production was suspended in 1998, while demand got out of control, with copies going for $70 on Ebay. So here it is, back by public demand. Slipcase.
    2002, nov 07; 21:02:
  • The Elementary Particles - Michel Houellebecq [1 book, Amazon US]
    Bruno and Michel are half-brothers, born to a hippie mother who believed in following her bliss. As boys they live in ignorance of each other--at one point attending the same school without knowing of their blood connection. As grown men they're not truly close, but they occasionally phone each other late at night. Bruno's a hopeless sexual obsessive, often drunk or on his way there, and Michel's a molecular biologist, distant and inaccessible. [...] Michel doesn't hate women; he doesn't even notice them. Instead of leering at bodies by the pool, he stares at particles in microscopes. He wins prizes for his experiments, but never experiences the rush of life. For both men, the damage has been done by history, by mother, before the story begins. What interests Houellebecq are the permutations and recapitulations of damage--the way the particles of the self can never be completely reconstituted. --Emily White for amazon.com
    2002, nov 07; 18:44:
  • 2 many DJs - Various Artists[1 CD, Amazon US]

    Stephen & David Dewaele from Soulwax have created a new way of old-style DJ-ing, which is definitely influenced by great names like DJ Kool Herc, Grandmaster Flash and Melle Mel. Their cutting technique just works in a major fashion, just listen to the intro by Emerson, Lake & Palmer Vs. Basement Jaxx. Others thrown into this past & present eclectic mix include Velvet Underground, Salt 'n Pepa, The Stooges, 10cc, Royksopp, The Breeders and... you get the idea. 45 tracks in 60 minutes!

    1. Cant Get You Out Of My Head (Soulwax Elektronic Remix) - Kyl 2. Wheres Your Head At (Head A Pella) - Basement Jaxx 3. Fuck The Pain Away - Peaches 4. Im Waiting For The Man - Velvet Underground 5. J Aime Regarder Les Mecs - Polyester 6. Dance To The Music - Sly And The Family Stone 7. Oh Sheila - Ready For The World 8. I Wanna Be Your Dog - Dakar And Grinser 9. Disko Kings - Ural 13 Diktators 10. The O Medley - Bobby Orlando 11. Silverscreen Shower Scenes - Felix Da Housecat 12. No Fun - The Stooges 13. Push It - Salt N Pepa 14. Joe Le Taxi - Hanayo With Jurgen Paape 15. Crush On You - The Jets 16. Funkacise - Funkacise Gang 17. Motocross Madness - Soul Grabber 18. French Kiss - Lil Louis And The World 19. Serious Trouble - Zongamin 20. Androgyny Thee Glitz Mix By Felix Da Housecat - Garbage 21. Disc Jockeys Delight Vol 2 - Frank Delour 22. Kaw Liga (Prairie Mix) - The Residents 23. Shake Your Body - Carlos Morgan 24. Into The Stars (Firebirds Remix) - Alapawezen 25. Concepts - Interstelllar 26. 99 Luftballoons - Nena 27. Independent Women Part 1 - Destinys Child 28. Dreadlock Holiday - 10cc 29. 9 To 5 - Dolly Parton 30. Eple - Royksopp 31. Death Disco - Arbeid Adelt 32. Keine Melodien Feat MJ Lan - Jeans Team 33. I Wish - Skee Lo 34. My Gigolo - Maurice Fulton Presents Stress 35. Cannonball - The Breeders 36. Human Fly - The Cramps 37. Danger High Voltage - The Wildbunch 38. Dont Bring Me Down - Op 1 Bastards 39. Hand To Phone - Adult 40. La Rock 01 - Vitalic 41. I Was Made For Loving You - Queen Of Japan 42. The Beach - New Order 43. Sandwiches - Detroit Grand Pubahs 44. I Sit On Acid - Lords Of Acid 45. Start Button - Streamer Feat Private Thoughts In Public Places [...]
    2002, nov 06; 23:08:
  • Luomo - Vocalcity[1 CD, Amazon US]
    Since 1999 a new form of computer-based electronic music called Microhouse has evolved. This skittish and glitchy but undeniably funky hybrid of house and minimal techno recently jumped the 12" barrier and has invaded mainstream CD emporiums around the globe. Cloning the fractal and self-referential surface of neo-dub, with the endless groove of hypno-house, micro-house captures the pulse of the new millennium. While most of the new music is happy just to pump the minimal funk, the best Microhouse also projects a distinct "soulfulness" conveying an undetermined, but deep and intimate psychological atmosphere. This incredible and rare nuance owes as much to 60's minimalism a la Glass or Reich as it does to sampled disco divas. The genre's first full blown CD opus surfaced in 2000, with the release of Loumo's "Vocalcity" (Luomo is the pseudonym of Finnish techno-meister, Vladislav Delay). Vocalcity is a stunning trip into a hypnotic stream of conscio-funk where Donna Summer does the hustle to Stockhausen remixed by King Tubby. Permeated with a deep nostalgia for the future of funk, "Vocalcity" is the microhouse smartbomb. Every glitch and tik is right on the mark, in an album so smooth and deep it conjures déjà vu. "Vocalcity", seamlessly blends a combo of sampled and "live" lyrics and while lacking for the most part discernable lyrics, manages to convey a deep sense of emotion, intimacy and longing. My Album of the Year 2000 - Vocalcity! -- RP for amazon.com
    2002, nov 06; 13:31:
  • Cut Up Or Shut Up: An Edited History Of Cut’n’Paste by Neil McMillan TEXT version by DiscoPatrick, HTML version by jahsonic
    2002, nov 06; 13:24:
  • Fashionable Nonsense: Postmodern Intellectuals' Abuse of Science - Alan D. Sokal, Jean Bricmont [1 book, Amazon US]
    In 1996, an article entitled "Transgressing the Boundaries: Toward a Transformative Hermeneutics of Quantum Gravity" was published in the cultural studies journal Social Text. Packed with recherché quotations from "postmodern" literary theorists and sociologists of science, and bristling with imposing theorems of mathematical physics, the article addressed the cultural and political implications of the theory of quantum gravity. Later, to the embarrassment of the editors, the author revealed that the essay was a hoax, interweaving absurd pronouncements from eminent intellectuals about mathematics and physics with laudatory--but fatuous--prose. [...]
    2002, nov 05; 23:18:
  • Mastercuts - best of Jazz Funk [2 CD, Amazon US]
    Disc: 1 1. Running Away - Roy Ayers 2. Always There - Ronnie Laws 3. Dominoes - Donald Byrd 4. To Prove My Love - Ned Doheny 5. Rock Creek Park - The Blackbyrds 6. The Bottle - Gil Scott-Heron 7. Could Heaven Ever Be Like This - Idris Muhammad 8. Shaker Song - Spyro Gyra 9. Brighter Tomorrow - Tom Browne 10. I Thought It Was You - Herbie Hancock 11. Sausalito - Grover Washington Jr 12. De Ja Vu - Paulinho Da Costa Disc: 2 1. Expansions - Lonnie Liston-Smith 2. Jazz Carnival - Azymuth 3. Brazilian Love Affair - George Duke 4. Love Will Bring Us Back Together - Roy Ayers 5. Summer Madness - Kool & The Gang 6. Dancing In Outer Space - Atmosfear 7. Come With Me - Tania Maria 8. Los Conquistadores Chocolates - Johnny Hammond 9. Unicorn - Dizzy Gillespie & Lalo Schifrin 10. The New Killer Joe - Benny Golson 11. Let The Music Play - Charles Earland 12. Spring High - Ramsey Lewis
    Ten years and 7 volumes of Jazz Funk Mastercuts, the time is definitely right for the Best Of. With the continued success of Jamiroquai and exciting new acts such as Breakestra coming through interest in Jazz Funk has rarely been higher. This is the complete package of classics for both the nu skool kids just discovering the genre and the old timers who bought the early Mastercuts on vinyl (hands up if that includes you!). These are all the biggest tracks from the biggest artists in Jazz Funk. Just look at the tracklisting, everyone's a winner. This is not just a story about an album though. Mastercuts are teaming up with the Jazz Cafe for the Mastercuts Jazz Funk Festival at the legendary venue in Camden. Lonnie Liston Smith, the Blackbyrds, Tom Browne, Ronnie Laws and Tania Maria are all due to roll back the years through the month of March. As well as a large joint marketing campaign, major press and radio exposure is guaranteed as these 2 classic brands come together. So to misquote the legendary Mr Ayers "Jazz Funk Will Bring Us Back Together"! [...]
    2002, nov 05; 23:08:
  • The Communist Manifesto - by Karl Marx, Friedrich Engels [1 book, Amazon US]
    "A spectre is haunting Europe," Karl Marx and Frederic Engels wrote in 1848, "the spectre of Communism." This new edition of The Communist Manifesto, commemorating the 150th anniversary of its publication, includes an introduction by renowned historian Eric Hobsbawm which reminds us of the document's continued relevance. Marx and Engels's critique of capitalism and its deleterious effect on all aspects of life, from the increasing rift between the classes to the destruction of the nuclear family, has proven remarkably prescient. Their spectre, manifested in the Manifesto's vivid prose, continues to haunt the capitalist world, lingering as a ghostly apparition even after the collapse of those governments which claimed to be enacting its principles. -- [...]
    2002, nov 05; 19:08:
  • Foucault and Queer Theory - Tamsin Spargo [1 book, Amazon US]
    Michel Foucault is the most gossiped-about celebrity of French poststructuralist theory. The homophobic insult 'queer' is now proudly reclaimed by some who once called themselves lesbian or gay. What is the connection between the two?
    This is a postmodern encounter between Foucault's theories of sexuality, power and discourse and the current key exponents of queer thinking who have adapted, revised and criticised Foucault. Our understanding of gender, identity, sexuality and cultural politics will be radically altered in this meeting of transgressive figures.
    "Foucault and Queer Theory" excels as a brief introduction to Foucault's compelling ideas and the development of queer culture with its own outspoken views on heteronormativity, sado-masochism, performativity, transgender, the end of gender, liberation-versus-difference, late capitalism and the impact of AIDS on theories and practices. [...]
    2002, nov 05; 01:33:
  • Brian Eno- Here Come the Warm Jets [1 CD, Amazon US]
    In 1973, fed up with Bryan Ferry's domineering in Roxy Music, Eno leapt into a solo career that would find him championing the "art" in "artifice." This record is a who's who of the then-burgeoning English art-rock scene, featuring Robert Wyatt, Robert Fripp, and every member of Roxy Music except its leader (thus answering the musical question, "What if Eno had helmed the third Roxy record instead of Ferry?"). Warm Jets sports a lightheartedness that was a refreshing antidote to the pomposity of Yes and ELP on the dark side of art-rock's spectrum, with nonsensical, sound-based couplets such as "Oh headless chicken / How can those teeth stand so much kicking?" This debut is a milestone not just for Eno, but for all rocking music. Listen to Fripp's furious guitars on "Baby's On Fire" and "Blank Frank." It's incredible, Velvet Underground-inspired rock in a scene that had forgotten what rocking meant. --Gene Booth [...]
    2002, nov 05; 01:14:
  • Fela Kuti - Open and Close/Afrodisiac [1 CD, Amazon US]
    I first heard the track "Open and Close" on WKCR (NYC/Columbia U.) on their late night soul, funk, and afro-beat program Night Train. I was just getting into Fela, and I was completely blown away by this particular track, which I still think contains some of Fela's best vocal work. Unfortunately, the album of the same name was only available on a fairly rare import reissue.
    Now Open and Close appears together with the enormously funky album Afrodisiac (I don't remember what it formerly appeared with), and the pairing combines to make what is probably my favorite Fela disc. The horns are bright and fiery, the grooves are tight, and they range from super fast funk to molasses-slow grinds. When Amazon finally gets around to making an "Essential Fela" list (it's about time!), I recommend they include this. -- joshua-one for amazon.com [I have this cd and it is truely a masterpiece] [...]
    2002, nov 05; 00:26:
  • Nova Classics Three - Various Artists[1 CD, Amazon US]
    1. Papa Was A Rolling Stone(The Pioneers) 2. The Message(Grand Master Flash) 3. Superman Lover(Johnny Guitar Watson) 4. Coffee Cold(Galt Mac Dermot) 5. Pacific State(808 State) 6. Simply Beautiful(Al Green) 7. War(Ewin Star) 8. Modus Operandi(Photek) 9. Beggin'(Timebox) 10. Sweet Songs(Sarah Webster Fabio) 11. Life Is A Flower(Sam Carty) 12. Ere Mela Mele(Mahmoud Ahmed) 13. An Evening With Hefner Pt.3(Hefner) 14. Move On Up(Curtis Mayfield) -- [...]
    2002, nov 04; 23:02:
  • David Cronenberg - Dead Ringers[1 DVD, Amazon US]
    David Cronenberg, for so long an auteur of films typified by schlocky, low-budget splatter effects and a profoundly disturbing intelligence, turned to drama with his 1988 masterpiece "Dead Ringers". It flirts with some of his usual themes - a fusion of the brain and body, mad doctors (with weird names), and decay - but there's a level of sophistication here that tops all of his previous work. Here, special effects are used in the background, as Jeremy Irons gives an utterly compelling (and damn convincing) performance as two twin gynaecologists, whose descent into drugs and madness will surely leave even the most ardent horror viewer deeply disturbed. On one level, it works almost as Shakespearean tragedy, as the two brothers imitate each other in an affair with Genevieve Bujold. When the less confident twin wants to "keep it for myself", it sparks instant dissonance between the disturbingly close kin. On another level, it's a crazed horror film involving bizarre medical instruments, and gynaecological mutations. The truly tragic conclusion leaves the viewer dazed, confused, but above all, deeply emotional, and for that alone it should deserve the term "masterpiece". Other factors that allow it such a term are the truly masterful performances (Cronenberg a master of getting Oscar-contending acting out of even the most mediocre performers), the genius use of special effects, the compellingly cold direction, and Howard Shore's extraordinary score. To say it's not for all tastes is an understatement, as it's probably the darkest film of the past decade, but for those with an interest in grippingly-executed, profoundly disturbing psychological horror/drama, "Dead Ringers" is one of the most marvellous films around. -- Allan Harrison for amazon.com -- [...]
    2002, nov 03; 22:11:
  • Milagre Dos Peixes - Milton Nascimento [1 CD, Amazon US]
    This album was the 1973 follow-up to '72's epochal "Clube Da Esquina." It's a brave, integrity-filled move that doesn't attempt to duplicate "CDE" in the least. Emotion-filled and at times a bit creepy, it features wordless vocals and sound effects in lieu of lyrics, most of which were banned by the military dictator schmucks then in power in Brazil. This reissue has a different cover than the original and inferior sound, but the great, proper Abbey Road-remastered version seems to be out of print (EMI, what are you DOING! ). Nevertheless, this is an important work that deserves to be heard one way or another. Musically, it's nothing like you might expect, it's a work you need to set aside some time to absorb properly. Its riches will reveal themselves to you eventually, and you'll then embark on a mission to track down the good CD version of this, which even reproduces the lavish packaging of the original. This is music as deep and wide as the ocean... -- Greg Casseus for amazon.com [...]
    2002, nov 03; 19:03:
  • Danny Krivit - Expansions [1 CD, Amazon US]
    The Vogado Projects Vol. 1 - Mas Fuerte Que El Sol Fantastic Plastic Machine - Whistle Song (Original Mix) * Gerardo Frisina - Descarga Happyhead - Digital Love Thing (Underground MK Mix) 808 State - Pacific State (Justin Strauss Mix) Ernest Saint Laurent - Clumsey Lobster * Blaze - Klubtrance Outlaw Soundworks - Out * DJ Food - Peace Lost Tribes OF Ibadan 3 - Powder (Kerri Chandler Mix) * Noiseshaper - The Only Redeemer (Needs Remix) Brooklyn Heights - Down To The Bone Block 16 feat. Jhelisa - Find An Oasis Pal Joey - Harmony Klubfilter - Illumination Funk Against Jazz - Latino (Unreleased Mix) * Dennis Ferrer - NJF Nigel Hayes - Que Pasa Celebrate - Inner Soul * Octave One - Blackwater (Chase The Blues Instrumental Mix) * Peckham Royalty - Minor Villain * Frankie Valentine - Scrap Iron Rebel (Original Mix) Zion Lockwood - Pure As P Mr. Hermano - Jugando Con Fuego (Original Demo Version) -- [...]
    2002, nov 03; 01:58:
  • Rest in P - Eddie Hazel [1 CD, Amazon US]

    Often compared to the great Jimi Hendrix, Eddie never received the same level of fame and public admiration as Jimi sometimes suffering the same stigma as other great black guitarists such as Ernie Isley and being flagged as a mere Hendrix wannabe. As he told Guitar Player magazine, "I listened to Jimi a lot. It was very uncanny that our styles were alike, but that is what I was hearing inside. I wanted to make the guitar an extension of my singing. My style is really like solo vocalist guitar."

    Born on April 10, 1950 in Brooklyn, he grew up in Plainfield, New Jersey where he sang in church before joining local R&B band the Boyce Brothers. He taught himself how to play after his brother bought him a guitar for Christmas while his family was still living in Brooklyn. [...] Penniless and homeless the last year of his life, Eddie moved back to his mother's Plainfield home. He had been suffering from chronic stomach problems for years, and finally he succumbed to internal bleeding and liver failure on December 23, 1992. -- [...]

    2002, nov 03; 00:40:
  • Not available on DVD or tape, there is a John Akomfrah documentary http://us.imdb.com/Title?0113604
    A sci fi documentary about black sience fiction. Legend has it that in the 1930's itinerant man Robert Johnson sold his soul to the devil in order to play the blues. What Johnson got in return for his soul was a black secret technology which would produce the history of black music. 200 years into the future another itinerant figure, the Data Thief, sells his soul for the knowledge of his future. He has been told - Go to the past (our present) and unearth black culture's speculations about the future. Piece together these speculations and you will find the secret of the Mothership Connection - the black secret technology which will unlock your future. The clue to the Mothership Connection comes in a phrase - "the boundary between science fiction and social reality is an optical illusion". Armed with two recording devices - a black box and a pair of metal sunglasses, the Data Thief goes in search of writers (sci fi author Samuel Delaney and music critic Greg Tate), musicians (a.o. Sun Ra, A Guy Called Gerald and DJ Spooky), an astronaut and an actress who will help him explain this phrase, assemble and crack the code. A sci fi documentary about Africa, History and Memory. -- source: http://www2.centrepompidou.fr/beware/eng_homens/moth.html
    2002, nov 02; 23:05:
  • The Black Atlantic: Modernity and Double Consciousness - Paul Gilroy[1 book, Amazon US]
    In "The Black Atlantic" Paul Gilroy constructs an excellent text based on the black diasporic experience. His views of black culture as being a dynamic networked construct based on the idea of the diaspora derived from Jewish culture, is an illuminating concept that contains great substance. Gilroy's underlying transnational humanism (that can be read in his latest pseudo-utopian work "Against Race") and vital rethinking about the perils of cultural nationalism and the urgent benefits of a unique hybrid culture is a thoroughly needed breath in the stasis of linear monocultural thinking. The book functions in an excellent manner in addressing the complex dynamics of slavery, colonization, and their inherent residual effects on black political culture. In addition the method in which Gilroy weaves Adorno, Hendrix, hip-hop culture, Du Bois, Wright, Hegel and a host of others in a clear and eloquent manner is cause for reading in itself. In a nutshell, this is a valuable sociological and philosophical work that creates a rupture in linear, absolutist views of history, sexuality, identity and other various elements in relation to black particularity. In this book Gilroy composes the dynamics of intercultural exchange (whether artistic, political, social, moral etc.) as well as attributing to socialized historical memory through its brilliant text. - martin de leon for amazon.com -- [...]
    2002, nov 02; 13:10:
  • The Sex Revolts: Gender, Rebellion, and Rock'N'Rolll - Simon Reynolds [1 CD, Amazon US]
    Blending music criticism, cultural studies, and gender theory, this analysis traces the precursors and prototypes for rock rebellion, examines the diverse forms of misogyny embedded in particular rock subcultures, evaluates gender, identity uncertainty and other themes, and examines female rockers and their music from their earliest incarnations to the present. Annotation copyright Book News, Inc. Portland, Or. -- [...], [...]
    2002, nov 01; 22:59:
  • This Is Tech Pop 21st Century Electro & New Wave [1 CD, Amazon US]
    1. Emerge - Fischerspooner 2. 14 Zero Zero - Console 3. Nobody Knows (Part One) - Zoot Woman 4. Sunglasses At Night - Tiga & Zyntherius 5. Candy Girl - Soviet 6. Destroy She Said - Circ 7. Genedefekt - Green Velvet 8. You're My Disco (New Romantic Mix) - Waldorf 9. Overdose - Tomcraft 10. State Of Grace - Swayzak 11. Naked, Drunk, And Horny - Yellow Note Vs. Pukka 12. Rippin Kittin - Golden Boy with Miss Kittin 13. Happy Hour - Felix Da Housecat 14. Extensive Care - Crossover 15. Machine Says Yes - FC Kahuna 16. Pozition - Selway 17. Playgirl (Zombie Nation Mix) - Ladytron 18. Go! - Toktok Vs. Soffy O 19. Naïve Song (Dave Clarke Remix) - Mirwais 20. Ocean Drive - FPU -- [...]
    2002, nov 01; 22:59:
  • Green Velvet - Green Velvet [1 CD, Amazon US]
    Chicago's Curtis Jones (a.k.a. Cajmere and Green Velvet) is, by far, on of the top producers of house music in the world. In the mid-'90s, his self-run record labels, Cajual and Relief, spearheaded the continuing renaissance of the genre with distinctive tracks that delivered a powerful dance-floor rush and gave DJs a deep arsenal of guaranteed crowd pleasers. While his Cajmere tracks are upbeat vocal workouts, it's his work as Green Velvet that continues to fascinate and gain legions of new devotees. Jones sets his GV material on a bed of dark, relentless, dirty beats, while adding his own twisted vocal flourishes that are one part Gary Numan and one part Bauhaus. Each track has a distinct narrative (i.e., a tour of a night club or an imagined reincarnation as a drop of water); the results are both frightening and hilarious. Long out-of-print on vinyl, the new Green Velvet CD combines such "classics" as "Flash," "Leave My Body," and "Answering Machine" with more recent material, including the fantastic Giorgio Moroder-inspired drive of "Coitus." --David Prince for amazon.com [...]
    2002, nov 01; 22:44:
  • John Martyn - Solid Air [1 CD, Amazon US] What a totally wonderful album!! It's one of those works that truly have something for everyone. A love of left-field jazz and blues led him to this scintillating formula that you can kick back and enjoy (repeatedly!) or pick through for cool, groovy samples. I had long heard of this album as a big influence on folks I really respect, but that still didn't prepare me for the bewitching effect of this magical effort. Why, pray tell, is this guy not world famous? Upon further investigation, I found that "Bless The Weather" and "Inside Out" are also incredible, especially the former. This is ideal for listening on a cool, breezy, sensuous evening, but the moments on it that challenge that idyllic scenario are the ones that will keep you coming back for more. Also highly recommended to Terry Callier fans. I wish some ad agency would put something from here in some commercial, and get him some deserved recognition while he's still around to enjoy it, unlike his late buddy Nick Drake. GET THIS ALBUM -- Greg C from NY for amazon.com [A friend of mine has been listening to this for quite some time, I discovered it through Gilles ]

    2002, nov 01; 22:30:
  • http://www.stevienixed.com Nathalie's blog, a Belgian native who I met on the Tom Ewing's "I Love Music Board".
    2002, nov 01; 22:25:
  • http://blissout.blogspot.com/ Simon Reynolds starts his own weblog, Bliss Out. [...]
    2002, nov 01; 22:21:
  • http://www.freakytrigger.co.uk/ Pop music fanzine featuring reviews, commentary and opinionated nonsense. Operated by Tom Ewing, also creator of the I Love Music board.
    2002, nov 01; 21:48:
  • Modulations - Iara Lee [1 VHS , Amazon US]
    Ambitious and mostly successful overview of the roots and branches in the modern electronic music scene. The film covers quite a bit in just over an hour. The use of "sound bite"-length artist interviews seems to irk some reviewers; I think they are failing to savor the irony that this is just the cinematic equivalent of "sampling", after all. As in any similar collection of interviews, artist comments range from the banal to the revelatory, but the director gets credit for not allowing any concept to become too redundant. This film edges out the very similar documentary "Better Living Through Circuitry", by thankfully not inserting so many tiresome, epileptic seizure-inducing scenes of people "raving". Highly recommended for genre fans. -- D.Hartley for Amazon.com
  • Modulations: A History of Electronic Music: Throbbing Words on Sound - Iara Lee[1 book, Amazon US]

    In this expansive history of electronic music, Shapiro (The Rough Guide to Drum `n' Bass) chronicles the creative moment of generating sound through sampling, mixing, and manipulation. Written by musicians and aficionados, the articles assembled here form a fascinating account of innovators from John Cage to Miles Davis, thoroughly exploring this sprawling genre and its musical offshoots. Densely packed and meticulously detailed, the book makes some startling geographic and stylistic leaps in an effort to trace the comprehensive history of electronic music. Through interviews, vivid pictures, and crisp commentary, it illustrates how electronic music is now at work in the majority of today's musical styles. This work, a tie-in to Iara Lee's 1998 film of the same name, explores in greater detail some of the same ground covered in J.M. Kelly's The Rough Guide to Techno Music (2000). An essential tool for anyone interested in this music, whether mildly or deeply. -- Caroline Dadas
    [with contributions from David Toop, Peter Shapiro, Kodwo Eshun, ... and interviews with Arthur Baker, Derrick May, Holger Czukay, etc ... ] [...]

    2002, nov 01; 20:56:
  • The Orb's Adventures Beyond The Ultraworld - The Orb [2 CD, Amazon US]
    The first Orb album was entirely new when it appeared: a low-key dance record, with echoes and swells more than up-front tunes, stoner-level dub bass, and all sorts of samples and sounds--seagulls, film clips, astronaut voices, bits of disco--fluttering through the mix like hallucinations. Essentially a techno album for tired dancers, it's held up nicely over time, thanks to its intricate, dreamy sonics. Beyond the classic "Little Fluffy Clouds"--a set of interlocking synth hooks and loping percussion, held together by a cut-up sample of Rickie Lee Jones talking about the skies of her youth--there are lots of mellow delights here, particularly the blissful reggae groove "Perpetual Dawn." --Douglas Wolk [...]
    2002, nov 01; 20:51:
  • Dub Syndicate - Fear of a Green Planet [1 CD, Amazon US]
    The On-U Soundmasters of Dub Syndicate have returned for what must certainly be their 500th album. Now on American-based Shanachie Records, these prolific British dub terrorists, along with their legendary producer Adrian Sherwood, have been assaulting dance floors and the ears of stoned-out ravers and rastas since the early '80s. Groups and DJ's as dissimilar as The Orb, New Order, Public Enemy and DJ Shadow have either sampled or paid homage to their Brit dub brethren.

    Fear Of A Green Planet, their latest, doesn't have the same bite as their previous work, but does contain its fair share of the On-U sound: kraut-rock styled noise collages, thumpin' techno, hip-hop beats and, of course, that lazy but determined dub reggae sound you'd expect from a group called Dub Syndicate. As you could probably guess from the title, Fear Of A Green Planet is the Syndicate's tribute to their favorite herb, and most of the song titles are marijuana related, including dandies like "Sizzle Bud" and "Each Breath I Take." While not as landmark and groundbreaking as Public Enemy's, Fear Of A Black Planet, nor even as good as some of the Dub Syndicate's earlier work, Fear Of A Green Planet does raises the ante on the current dance floor scene.

    Hopefully, Fear Of A Green Planet finally elevates Dub Syndicate to the legend status they deserve: right between Bambaata and Lee "Scratch" Perry. At the very least, this CD will help to get the party started right. So, if your exposure to dance floor dub still remains limited, then this disc is the perfect place to start. -- Sean-Michael Yoder [...]

    2002, nov 01; 20:38:
  • Naked Lunch - William Burroughs[1 book, Amazon US]
    Why has this homosexual ex-junkie, whose claim to fame rests entirely on one book--the hallucinogenic ravings of a heroine addict--so seized the collective imagination? Burroughs wrote Naked Lunch in a Tangier, Morocco, hotel room between 1954 and 1957. Allen Ginsberg and his beatnik cronies burst onto the scene, rescued the manuscript from the food-encrusted floor, and introduced some order to the pages. It was published in Paris in 1959 by the notorious Olympia Press and in the U.S. in 1962; the landmark obscenity trial that ensued served to end literary censorship in America. [...]
    2002, nov 01; 10:18:
  • Exotica - David Toop[1 book, Amazon US]
    Although Toop's subject is predominantly that of fabricated soundscapes in a real world, a music which has come to be categorised as exotica, his roots are literary and extend to novelistic cosmographers like Herman Melville, Joseph Conrad and William Burroughs. Toop is erudite, but refreshingly unacademic in the way his texts are interspersed with autobiography, anecdote, interviews and fiction. Bringing imaginative criticism to bear on a range of subjects from the beginnings of ethnic music to Josephine Baker and Yma Sumac, Les Baxter and Martin Denny, Toop succeeds in aligning the concept of the exotic with world music. In a century in which we have grown to be increasingly interiorised, television often providing our point of contact with the external world, so music has come to assume the role of transporting geography into our rooms. In this respect Les Baxter's floridly contrived soundscapes prove central to Toop's thesis, for Baxter was throughout the 1950's to offer his listeners package tours in sound. According to Toop Baxter's music provided 'running excursions for sedentary tourists who wanted to stroll around some taboo urges before lunch, view a pagan ceremony through gaps in the bamboo, go wild in the sun or conjure a demon, all without leaving home stereo comforts in the whitebread suburbs.' Baxter's albums carried titles such as Caribbean moonlight, Jewels of the Sea, Ritual of the Savage and Ports of Pleasure, and by hinting at sexual licentiousness in exotic landscapes, the music was to prove irresistible to a 1950's record buying public. -- Jermy Reed for amazon.com [...]
    2002, nov 01; 02:01:
  • The Aesthetics of Rock - Richard Meltzer [1 book, Amazon US]
    Richard Meltzer has been going on for years about how he invented rock criticism. He probably did, but that's a bit like saying you invented prog-rock - I love prog-rock, or at any rate some of it, but I don't really care who invented it, cause so much of it is just plain awful. His genius is that he is a great WRITER, on a word-to-word basis. "The Aesthetics of Rock" was considered for years as some sort of prank; I once had a rubbishy hack book called "Atrocities of Rock & Roll", or something, which poked mindless fun at it for being unreadable and pretentious. It's no more unreadable than James Joyce. What Meltzer did was to treat rock, or pop, or whatever, as a field worthy of being looked at, if not always taken entirely seriously, and it mattered nothing to him whether the record under examination was by the Beatles or by the Standells - he was looking for whatever all this stuff had in common. (Personally I think Joe Carducci succeeded better in his wickedly funny "Rock and the Pop Narcotic", but then Carducci had a much wider field to write about, since his book came out in the 90s and Meltzer's book stops around about 1968.)

    To read Meltzer applying Heidegger to doo-wop is to have the structure of your brain rewired in new and interesting ways. His actual career as a paid-up rock critic was short and, well, sour, although he nobly championed the Minutemen in later years; but by then he had ceased to be on anyone's guest list. He is a great American writer and this is the opus that gave him, if not exactly fame and fortune, at least notoriety. You owe it to yourself to check it out, and also his wonderful anthology "A Whore Just Like The Rest", in which he savagely tears into Greil Marcus' patronising introduction. A Meltzer could never happen now, when rock writers (I won't dignify them with the name of "critic") have to be industry ... in order to get any work at all; but at least he's still alive, still sane, still as honest as anyone could hope for, and still writing. -- lexo-2 from Dublin, Ireland, for Amazon.com [...]

    2002 Oct blog:
    2002 Sep blog:
    2002 Aug blog:
    2002 Jul blog:
    2002 Jun blog:
    2002 May blog:
    2002 Apr blog:
    2002 Mar blog:
    2002 Feb blog:
    2002 Jan blog:
    2001 blog:
    Yahoo Stats


    [^^ Up] - [jahsonic.com] - [Take The Tour] Take The Guided Tour

    your Amazon recommendations - Jahsonic - early adopter products

    Managed Hosting by NG Communications