Fat White Family Vs Regular Fries...
In lieu of any words on Silver Mt Zion Memorial Orchestra's epic performance at Koko on Sunday (we've been through that before and it's here), a lovely film by La Blogotheque about life at their label, Constellation Records...
And while we're thinking along these lines (this post is going to pretend you've read the one below, though it's clear that you haven't) here's a new song and a mysterious film by the ever-heroic Gallon Drunk.
In the name of what we're insisting is research, we track down a copy of a tender-hearted documentary about Birthday Party guitarist Roland S. Howard.
Autoluminescent - which I guess means self-lit - catches Howard's combustible genius with Nick Cave, as well as his erratic path through Crime &The city Solution and These Immortal Souls. Howard died in 2009 but proves a sardonic observer of his own declining health. "Bone chilling and blood healing," is how Lydia Lunch describes his unscalable wall of sound; she knows, one imagines, what she's talking about. Cave, Henry Rollins and Thurston Moore also crop up, as does Wim Wenders, who caught Crime & The City Solution at the height of their hollow-cheeked, Berlin cool in Wings of Desire. (More from me on that here.) Below: angels underground...
We've not seen the new Jim Jarmusch film Only Lovers Left Alive and so speak of it with no authority whatsoever. We are, nevertheless, ferociously determined to like it. (We said the same about his last film Limits of Control. It took a week to get through that on DVD.) Here, however, is some stuff from the soundtrack, much of which is by Jarmusch's own band SQURL and drone-driven lutenist Josef Van Wissem. Parts of this record feel like the idle doodles of an indulgent film director blessed with unspeakably cool friends and unrealistically great hair. Other parts, including a filthy cover of Wanda Jackson's Funnel of Love, are borderline-magnificent. As as this...
Lots of stuff on William Burroughs kicking round the internet (or is it the interzone?) right now. Wild Bill would have been 100 years old this month. Intrigued, we head down to the Photographers' Gallery to check out his camerawork, alongside some random snapshots by Andy Warhol (characteristically - and possibly purposefully - unilluminating) and David Lynch's factory shots. These are not, as the Warhol connection may suggest, grainy pics of shiny superstars, but actual pictures of dilapidated and abandoned factories. All the hauntological and ruin porn tropes are in place, but since this is Lynch, the images carry an eerie pulse of their own.
But back to Burroughs. Among my favourite of his theories is 'Do Easy'. It's explained in detail here, but essentially it's about aligning yourself with the physical world and then following its flow. "Handle objects with consideration," he writes, "and they will show you all their little tricks."
Helpfully, Gus Van Sant made a short film based on Do Easy in 1978. And, since this is Burroughs, the object handled with consideration turns out to be a gun...
High on the list of things we like at the moment is the new album Moon by Snowbird, featuring Simon Raymonde, once of The Cocteau Twins and thereafter the man behind Bella Union records, whose things we'd basically buy as soon as they were made, if we could.
His partner in this is Stephanie Dosen, whose Liz Frazer-ish phrasing means Moon hovers mysteriously between woozy intimacy and wintery distance, much as The Cocteau Twins did. What we were really hoping to post here is the mesmeric remix by Robin Gibb of their track I Heard The Owl Call My Name. We can't find it, but the original will more than suffice. (This is not, like, an official video or anything.)
Thereafter, a link to watch the 1973 film adaptation of Margaret Craven's 1967 novel I Heard The Owl Call My Name, about a dying priest (played by Tom Courtenay) sent to First Nations Canada. I remember reading the book years ago and finding it kinda haunting in the way that films about dying priests, especially in Canada, can sometimes be. Of the film I can say nothing useful 'cos I haven't watched yet. But, y'know, it's there. If you need it.
The first great thing of the year to happen has now happened: a vast new record by Thee Silver Mt Zion Memorial Orchestra and Tra-La-La Choir. Metal klezmer...
The Haringey Literature Live site is now, ah, live. Go here to find out more about top ranking literary activity at the Karamel Club in Wood Green. This week: poets Donald Gardner and Paul Lyalls.
Your correspondent hopes to swing by on Thursday night and read from - and possibly at - the floor. We thought we might give the very short story 'Kites', which won the Writers & Artists Yearbook Travel Fiction Prize last year, it's first public airing. "Spare and poetic... a deserving winner," wrote Editor Alysoun Owen. Read it here.