This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed. Just my ill informed opinions. It has been said GSM is the tabloid of blogging, I actually don't mind that at all. Skip to content. Share this: Twitter Facebook.
Like this: Like Loading This entry was posted in Uncategorized. Bookmark the permalink. October 2, at pm. Rab Vienna was the Vienna album but Lament def one of their best in my opinion, good band Ultravox and always liked them.
One recent metal act that has really stood out to me because its entire aesthetic over several releases seemed to be exclusively and persistently about the end of the world was the Botanist.
Even by black metal standards, the Californian who goes by the name of Otrebor and plays drums and hammered dulcimer while singing, is a complete outlier. He has released six albums proper as the Botanist - a character who represents the nemesis of mankind, his work: allowing plants to regain control of the planet after humanity has died.
The intense lyrical devotion to this messianic eco-terrorist character, married to the transcendent blur of music, wrenched from non-standard instrumentation, marks this music out as totally unique.
Most other modern genres pale in comparison to metal in the apocalypse stakes. Some producers of noise, Album) and dark ambient talk a good Omega game but the lack of lyrical content makes this little more than a colouring agent in my book. Elsewhere, I can detect a subtle millenarian undercurrent to hauntology - probably because of the shaded section on the Venn Diagram that crosses over into Protect And Survive booklets, public information films, Threads and so on.
And even then, when we put our heads together my initial assumption that there would be untold numbers of hauntological recordings about impending doom seem to be somewhat fanciful. So actual sonic hauntological artefacts dealing tangibly with apocalypse as we might fear it today are quite the rarity. The full play is fantastic - like the shipping forecast broadcast from a vessel scuttled at the lip of oblivion, and mixes spoken word drama, musique concrete, vintage synth-scaping and tape experimentation.
Over a tense solo snare beat that inexorably creeps up to double time and then beyond into a puncturing drum roll over a rigid, metronomic bassline, Steve Albini barks out the story of the final broadcast of a Modern Lovers-obsessed radio DJ who finds himself the last man on Earth broadcasting his final show to… no-one.
As different as they are, the power of both pieces can be found in specific effects achieved by the combination of non-standard music and spoken word, but more on this later. But one only has to look back 35 years to when the Doomsday Clock was as perilously close to its terminal engagement as it is now to see how much things have changed. Recently, after the untimely passing of the theorist and music critic Mark Fisher, I had reason to go back and re-read his essential text Capitalist Realism: Is There No Alternative?
In his opening gambit he claims the idea that it is easier to picture the end of the world than it is the end of capitalism attributed to both the erratic Slovenian philosopher Slavoj Zizek and the postmodernist Frederic Jameson as the essential motto for Capitalist Realism.
In the s and s - no matter how naive, how unrealistic, how compromised, alternatives in name still existed to capitalism. Socialism existed as a genuine force, anarcho collectivism existed as a genuine possibility etc.
Capitalism seamlessly occupies the horizons of the thinkable. World destruction, of one kind or another, is the inevitable end product of capitalism. It is now a near global system predicated on continual and aggressive expansion of markets by any means necessary in a world of finite resources that has only a limited capacity to cope with our core rapaciousness.
There is no other way things can pan out. Just another temporary trend. But popular or not, the more music struggles to get away from the cultural exhaustion of late capitalism - the more it resists mere revivalism and straight up pastiche - the more effective I find it on several levels. And so it is with apocalyptic music. Vanishing is a project led by Hull-born and Manchester-based poet and musician Gareth Smith who is, among other things, a regular collaborator with LoneLady.
His music isn't as overtly obsessed with the coming collapse of civilisation as that of the Botanist, say, but it has been riven by millennial angst. Smith has only talked in very general terms about how Vanishing is concerned with "alienation and claustrophobia"; about "this terrible feeling of dread"; and "the madness of the current time" but it seems to me that it could present a means for him to articulate extreme sensitivity to modern life, as this music jangles like a symptom of generalised anxiety disorder.
On this debut album, released recently on Salford's Tombed Visions, he has created Album) cast of characters such as The Forger and The Cleaners, and to breathe life into them he does the police in different voices. His words come flowing dynamically out of him in an East Yorkshire accent as heavy and blunt as a cosh; a necrotic black metal shriek; a granular baritone drawl; a tremulous whisper that rises and rises towards an ever ascending note of anxiety ringing clear like a struck bell.
And his words exit him like ten thousand cubic metres of silt, suspended in the garbage rich, caramel brown waters of the Humber flowing right out into the desalinated and mercury poisoned North Sea.
Vanishing by Vanishing, is on first listen heavily portentous, achingly pompous, grindingly dour and massively out of step with the current cultural times. Of the few who hear it, no doubt more will be annoyed than pleased by it; certainly more will find it wryly amusing rather than harrowing. It does however despite all this reveal itself on subsequent listens to be quite brilliant. Vanishing is not an exploration of something that has already happened or something that is going to happen but something we are currently enduring.
It is a sonic metaphor for how we are refusing to feel right now. The stab of panic late at night when anxiety stalks the hallway outside the door, when no amount of digital distraction will quell the thought, "What have we done?
Musically, this is a muscular and psychedelic mix of post rock, industrial, dark ambient, dub and other, less-easy to classify, fractured and cosmic sounds, provided mainly by Smith with Paddy Shine of GNOD.
Shine's bandmate Alex Macarte also turns up on synths at one point while Julie Campbell and Elizabeth Preston add a hint of Godspeed drama on cello here and there. Behind all things is glitchy electronica like the sound of Glaciers - Minemice - Out Of Time (CD machines stuttering and failing for the last time.
Over all things is a scree of noise as long since abandoned buildings eventually crumble, Glaciers - Minemice - Out Of Time (CD by encroaching plant life.
As for me, I was thinking of my father throughout the trip — in fact, it was a journey made for him in many ways. As I sat on the rocks near Gaumukh with my feet dipping in the freezing waters of the Bhagirathi, I knew that he was definitely there in my life, even though death had taken him away from us forever. There were the signs of immortality strewn all around me. And I just love to drink it in and absorb it.
And then it's not really a surprise or hardly a coincidence, when soon after our return to Delhi via Uttarkashi and Dehra Dun - my cousin Srila my Bachcha's mother sends me a photo of my parents which is one of the best recent ones that I've seen of my good-looking father.
The photo must have been hidden away in her albums and she must have suddenly chanced upon it. For me, it certainly eases the degrees of separation and brings back my father much closer to me.
Posted by ishani at PM 4 comments. Labels: Adventure and mountaineering. There are some people — who are no more — who one would have liked to have got to know better. In fact, there are times when looking back we regret many lost opportunities in interacting with them.
He was the cinematographer for Madhumati and even won the Filmfare award for best cinematography in the year for it — incidentally the legendary Madhumati also turned 50 this year! I remember a couple of family events, where Jhunu Jetha was present and Baba taking great pains to create an opportunity for my sister and me to chat with him. By then, he was aged and showed a great deal of affection for us — unfortunately for me, it just did not occur to me to sit and chat with him about the past and his exciting work as one of the early great cinematographers in Bollywood.
Of course, I do remember my father and mother fondly remembering Mr Gupta and his wife and the happy times that all of them had spent together in Mumbai way back in the early s. My Glaciers - Minemice - Out Of Time (CD, who was a skilled and creative photographer — drew a lot of inspiration from his Jhunuda and it was Jhunuda who had introduced my parents to the famous Bimal Roy and his wife in Mumbai.
Barua, K. Saigal, Salil Chowdhury, S. Burman and even Ritwik Ghatak have all worked with Bimal Roy on various projects. He started his career in Bengal with New Theatres but later migrated to Mumbai where he was to first work with Bombay Talkies and later to set up his own production company. By then, he had retired from full-time work and was on a vacation in Kolkata from Mumbai.
He along with his wife had spent quite a few hours with my grandparents on that occasion and it would have been the ideal time to talk to him about his work. I wish her all the best with this project and look forward to its completion.
Posted by ishani at AM 2 comments. Labels: BollywoodIndian cinema. This a tale of a traditional Indian Sari. The garment, which belongs to my mother, is far more that just a personal clothing item. Its warp and weft weaves together historical value of great significance. He was the first Indian to join the Indian Civil Service. He was also an author, song composer, linguist and made significant contribution towards the emancipation of women in Indian society during the British Raj.
After Satyendra Nath Tagore returned to Kolkata from abroad he had to leave for Mumbai for his posting in the civil services. But a serious problem cropped up as to the dress the lady would wear while stepping out of her inner quarters. The solution to this problem came from a French tailor. He prepared an oriental dress for the lady. Later in Bombay, Gyanadanandini ransacked the market for a perfect dress that would be fashionable as well as fit to be worn in the society.
She appreciated the style the Parsi women adapted while wearing the saree. She emulated them and also mastered the use of petticoat, the chemise and the blouse. Thus she became the founder of the contemporary Bengali fashion for ladies. This historic sari belonged to her and was a gift from her to my grandmother's mother Sanga Devi, who later gifted it to my grandmother. It was a present to my mother from her mother during her wedding in The sari is a traditional Bengal Baluchari sari, which depicts scenes from the contemporary political and social life in Bengal through its designs.
Baluchari saris, which have been now revived as a traditional handicraft from Bengal, also sometimes depicted scenes from mythology and Hindu gods and goddesses. When my grandmother Jayashri Sen nee Tagore gifted the sari to my mother, she had also shared with her anecdotes about Gyanadanandini and her huge collection of beautiful saris. My grandmother was a favourite grand-daughter and had spent a lot of time with her grandparents and was deeply attached to them before she married my grandfather - Mr Kulaprasad Sen, who was the Post-master General of Eastern India when he retired.
Posted by ishani at PM 1 comments. Many Americans decided to stay home during Memorial weekend and not go on their usual long-weekend trips. What Glaciers - Minemice - Out Of Time (CD interesting is that, recession and high oil prices are forcing people in America to turn to thrift. When we were young, crass consumerism was by and large frowned upon.
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