Wednesday, July 13, 2016
Open and enthused dialog is always encouraged at My Castle of Quiet—butts v. boobs, how The Jam's music has not aged well, weevils ... it's all good, very very good; group share, without hugs or the gut-stab of the serenity prayer at the end. Did I ever mention how much I dislike the serenity prayer? How it plays into our already-rooted Judeo-Xtian programming; another backhanded slap of prostration before the misty "Lord," who we invented to shoulder the burden of our natural, human weakness. "Accepting the things I cannot change" never got a bridge built. You know what else "works if you work it?" You get the idea.
"Fist in the Air" has to be the anthem of 2016, and who better to serve it up than Cherubs, who after 20 years, just decided to start making amazing music again. Also remarked upon were a classic track by Renegade Soundwave | Magnetic Systems w Fabio Frizzi | the trailer for Blood & Lace (see below) | the always-amazing Couch Slut (ferocious live set video below)(Couch Slut on My Castle of Quiet 2015 @ the Free Music Archive) | NJ's Null & Void [coming soon to MCoQ for a live set!] | Ustalost ... personally, I can't escape the new releases from True Love | Haxen | Verminaard ...my year's favorites are lining up fast, just past the halfway mark.
I'll be tending to family business next week ... please lend new WFMU DJ Carol McCrossen your ears & indulgence; she's got a fine radar for what's good.
Want to close with a double-down on my recommendation of 2008's Plague Town (director David Gregory also known for the excellent Richard Stanley documentary, Lost Soul), a film of humble means, rich in great atmosphere, resonant visuals, and brutal gore. Back in two weeks!
Wednesday, July 6, 2016
Do want to say that conversation on Brooklyn eats, Oasis restaurant, and a good bowl of borscht all very much appreciated. How satisfying its rough heartiness would be today—in this oppressive heat—with a cool dollop of sour cream on top.
I only ever ask for life to be reasonable, and it is, more often than not. Perhaps that's why the unreasonable moments really stand out—like hi-beams at night—getting under my skin like an irritation, a scabies infection—insulting my very senses like the acrid, over-warmed air of Northern NJ in July. A pale-skinned lass to share the occasional bowl of borscht, to sit on my chest a few times a week, to mosh in the kitchen, to share in the joys and mockery of life?!—seems like a reasonable request to me. "What's not to like?" (Right, D?)
Listeners remarked upon Iggy Pop's classic "Caesar" | Sand ... personal highs included, but were not limited to, new USBM from True Love | The Repos | Null & Void | new Misery Ritual | new top-shelf dark ambient from Verminaard | new Jason Crumer | Jabladav [James Harlow on bandcamp] ...
Our still this week comes from Georges "Eyes Without a Face" Franju's Judex, and we see there the titular character, where you can click to reach the streaming audio, image-laden playlist, and listener comments for this week's horrorcast. Thanks for your ears and appreciation.
And to close, I want to second my on-air recommendation for the 2014 film Honeymoon, working the "female partner is sensitive to spirit-energy, thus is drawn into a separate realityscape/consciousness" horror trope to rewarding dramatic effect:
Wednesday, June 29, 2016
They say that if you don't buy a lottery ticket, your chances of winning are almost as good as those of one who does. I'm starting to realize how that equation applies to so many things, i.e., you are almost as likely to reap success, praise, and attention for your efforts doing fuck all as you are breaking your back. Fortune smiles on the charming-but-talentless shitheads among us as often or more so than it does on those of us who really put the passion into everything we do. Integrity is supposed to be its own reward, but honestly it's getting old, practically on a respirator at this point.
In context, does anyone read these posts, apart from my Dad? (he won't be happy with this one...) I mean I realize that people do read, but is the ratio of effort-to-recognition anywhere near equivalent? The more Internet content that gets vomited out, by everyone, the fewer salvageable chunks I see. Fluff, as opposed to fodder. "Secret admirers" should step into the light, because I want to see you; you appreciate my quality, and I want to appreciate yours. Apart from sheer, blissful music appreciation, "building the tribe" is the reason I do this.
We were back with a metal vengeance last night, after a week off. Listeners liked Sodom | Doom | Undergang | Occult 45 | Null & Void | Inculcator | Steve Moore/Cub OST | Macronympha ...personal highlights included Rosemary Krust's Last Tape | Blood Rhythms | Vociferii | Haxen | Tzantza | ...and my all-time favorite Clandestine Blaze song.
Keeping it brief, I have a life to get to (not much of one, but I'm always working on it) ...our still this week comes from the small-budget, mini-masterpiece horror-comedy Crush The Skull (see below.) Click on Vivian with the gun to reach the audio archive, detailed playlist and listener comments for this week's My Castle of Quiet horrorcast™
Wednesday, June 15, 2016
"Baa baa ..." Whisper your questions and desires to Black Phillip, may he listen. But know that once you sign the book, you've committed and have chosen a side.
Many people today are obsessed with desire, but not with desire itself...rather, with damning it, condemning it. To want for earthly pleasures (not just sex, not by a mile) is shameful and to be quashed. Lust, indulgence of any kind, hedonism, all terribly BAD. Desexualization of everything is becoming the acceptable norm; be not a sexual being at all, be Switzerland ...you're a potato waiting for the proper sticks to be added. The hipster / politically correct wave riders forget, it would seem, that these are VERY CHRISTIAN VALUES, PURITANICAL, and therefore not "modern" at all. Desire makes the world go around—as does compassion, generosity of spirit, and a sense of community—but desire has become the odd man out in that equation. It's less fashionable to be The Devil than ever before; all manner of want is strictly verboten, uncool even, and if anything, that paradigm reminds me of the Heaven's Gate cult—CONTROL—draining the "sex" out of everything—albeit by way of a good, seemingly humanitarian intention.
Needless to say, I'm very proud to be a heterosexual male, neither a "sinner" nor a "saint," with my values and ideas very much consistent and very much forged in the latter part of the previous century. Remember, the hippies, cultists, and free thinkers of mine and my parents' generations did a lot of fucking and drug-taking, they answered the call of their hedonistic desires, and SOMEHOW they still fought for equality, Civil Rights, and against unjust wars and unchecked Capitalism. I'm not sure what neo-Liberals stand for, except shutting down and silencing every voice that is not in agreement with theirs, not seeing light and shade, or nuance—only a black and white world, where a hard cock and a juicy steak are both very much anathema. I am male, I am solid, my feet are on the ground, but I am also tender, compassionate, loving and sensitive. All those pieces fit. ....
Super-pleased to host the great Moros last night, who delivered a gruesome, punching horrorshow of a set, even better than I could have possibly imagined. Hard hard hard and soul-inspiring in all the right ways. Being on WFMU puts me at a great advantage, one I'm eternally grateful for, whereby I get to meet and host the bands and performers I like, and almost without exception find that they are excellent people as well. I could never have survived some of the harder years of my recent life without the sense of tribe and community that creating and hosting My Castle of Quiet and the Prison Tatt label have provided.
Super-quiet comment board last night, not sure wtf that was about... Maybe people were just too hypnotized by our opener, the driving noise-rock epic "Outside" by Dead C. Maybe I just suck and should play more pleasant pop tunes (we both know THAT isn't going to happen.) Other highlights included new Inculcator on Caligari | new Cherubs single (!) | new Moonknight | new Jason Crumer | Nurse 7" | classic Necrophagia | new Jucifer | Ataraxic Ataxia ...and, as they say, much, much more.
I'm off next week; good buddy Jonathan Herweg will be filling in, with his excellent, collage-like program of compelling experimental music etc., so do tune in and lend him an ear.
Back in two weeks, and thanks again to the guys in Moros! Click on Mercy and Black Phillip, from the contemporary classic The Witch, to reach the archive & playlist for this week's horrorcast™.
Wednesday, June 8, 2016
At My Castle of Quiet, customized, personal hells are our specialty. It's not what we plan on necessarily; just what ends up happening most of the time.
Why take today the shower you could put off until tomorrow? Make an imaginary friend. Start drafting that opinion to remove "ish" forever from the English language. Try to remember (without cheating) what the five Philip K. Dick books you haven't read are. It's not scary, the abyss awaits, and there's always room for one more on the dusty davenport.
Untraceable bruises and cuts. The floor is sticky, not sure why. With one eye turned away, who did I text last night? Hopefully a friend who won't shame me. ....
the "sin" is deceptively "sin-ple" (sorry) ... those dishes will eventually wash themselves, it's all a matter of focus. Look slightly to the left of what you're seeing, and squint ... the universe might suddenly open up before your eyes.
In our first set, we heard yet again from the great new Alkerdeel LP, as well as brand-new Inculcator on Caligari Records, Muert (from Spain, 2014) ... Always good to hear the splatter of Dead Peasant Insurance, and as we rounded into our last hour, new works from Pete Swanson / Greh Holger, the Anima reissue (1977) on Play Loud!, and Nurse With Wound's set of Sand remixes....
Up top, a high priest of sloth (there are many, after all) Charles Freck, as played by Rory Cochrane, from what I still find to be the most spot-on of PKD film adaptations, especially in that it captures what it feels like to read the novel (drugs, paranoia, our every move is being filmed, who am I and where do my loyalties lie? etc.) Click on the radical "de-bugging" depicted to stream the archived audio, view the playlist and read listener comments from last night's horrorcast™
NEXT WEEK: My Castle of Quiet returns to live music, with a set from the great Moros, from Phildelphia; join the Facebook "radio event"!
Wednesday, June 1, 2016
I rage against the elements. Summer Is Not My Friend. Everything that grates on my will is insult to injury. I shun the light, that which makes me feel like a hot dog under a heat lamp in a last-resort convenience store. You are welcome to bask in the sun's joyous bounty, many of you will. The way of the Lycanthrope is my way; I hunt at night.
A highlight of our first set was the track by Cryfemal, who just played NYC recently; Thanks to engineer Jean Paul, I got to meet Ebola off-mic two weeks ago; all his projects are excellent, and will be gracing the Castle airwaves in the weeks ahead.
From about 1-2 a.m., we had quite the rollicking punk set; too much gold there to mention...best just have a look.
Great tracks by Hive Mind and Schimpfluch-Gruppe made up much of our last hour; remember both are playing tomorrow night on a stacked bill for the first night of Ende Tymes VI—the fest is always a phenomenal weekend for noisehead locals; that link will tell you what you need to know.
Last hour ended gloriously, with a tape-side-long hypno-fest by Acre, and a selection from the excellent Ataraxic Ataxia CD on NO PART OF IT. ...
It would seem my brain momentarily mashed up ginkgo trees and gecko lizards, I knew what I meant. Especially this time of year, all "icky green things that live outside" are of the same stuff, kind of like the pink slime at McDonald's.
To stream this week's melted cone of a horrorcast™ (screen image from Deathgasm—a charming, metal-centric horror comedy from New Zealand) click up top for the streaming audio, playlist and listener comments.
Wednesday, May 25, 2016
Scandinavia, viewed from here at least, is a land of hoarfrost-covered woodlands, smoked meats and pickled fish—tall, hardy folk, with a shared Pagan history—a socially progressive quasi-utopia of great musicians and artists. While I have no doubt a native's view would be less homogenized and naturally less idealized, it's a beautiful American daydream for those like myself who envision a social-democratic landscape where it never gets that hot, the metal is ice-cold, the noise is served up with whips & ball-gags, and the schoolteachers are all hot-wired MILFs.
The reality could never be so simplified, because Scandinavia is nothing if not complex; there's a lot below the ice that is not readily apparent, no matter how many Bergman films you watch. It's this emotional bubbling under that's part of what makes Scandinavian music so exciting; what's unspoken vs. what's evident, technical excellence coupled with somber, Norse gravitas.
And so it was, another year, another Nordic prog-rock special, this time leaning almost as heavily on newer artists as those from the golden 70s. With bands like Circle and Krokofant in the mix (what before punk was called progressive rock, not yet a dirty word) is truly very much alive and relevant in the frozen North.
Listeners also especially liked / commented on: Samla Mammas Manna | Atlas | Jukka Tolonen (see live clip below) ... I quite liked selections from Hebosagil | Kaipa | Rättö Ja Lehtisalo | Haikara (see below) | Neutral
To hear this week's entire Norse-o-phile horrorcast™, click above on the lovely, switch-hitting Kim (from the excellent, mindbending Norwegian thriller Naboer (2005)), to reach the archived audio, playlist with album art, and listener-comments board.
Wednesday, May 18, 2016
Sure, I'm solid, but these older bones don't hold the chassis upright as well as they used to. The whole mechanism is vitally alive, yet undeniably in decline, fighting the good fight against collapse like that tower in Pisa. And I forget myself when I see hard, head-swirling, hi-speed metalpunk played live; the natural urge to stumble into the pit threatens to take over. Fortunately, WFMU's Studio B has barely enough room for the average man to stand gut-to-butt, let alone mosh. Good thing, because TOXICOLOGY salted the Castle earth with their tight, careening force last night, and a great time was had by all. Thanks again to Devon and the band, personable dudes all, and the boys in Pink Mass for the connect & support (and for commenting on the wrong playlist for a solid 15; oh, how we laughed!)
Lots of playlist favorites noted in our listener comments last night: Sleep's killer 2014 12" single | that super new Graves at Sea album (keeps giving) | 2009 Hellvete (our old friend Glen Steenkiste; hear his new split with Bear Bones, Lay Low) | a recently issued, vibrant rendition of a 1983 Morton Feldman piece | ...and of course lots of love for Toxicology, both in our playlist comments, and on our My Castle of Quiet Facebook group wall.
NEWSFRONT: Our 2016 WFMU Marathon premium CDrs are IN; so if you pledged to get a copy of Anthems (classic video-game themes & misty metal), hopefully that's in your hands soon. Enjoy!
And yes, those sleeves are designed (by me) to look fucked/Xeroxed to hell....
Thanks as always for your ear & participation!
Wednesday, May 11, 2016
I was batting high last night, in good form, but I don't want to take all the credit, it's all about teamwork after all. That first set, though! Many listeners commented on the Vinegar track, from a wickedly idiosyncratic 1971 one-off LP by the titular gloom-psych combo....just about as "recommended" as it gets.
Again, second week in a row the new Alkerdeel amazes, this time with an 18+ min. track that runs one through a Badlands-style wheat field, into a police shootout, with several side trips to hell. Still one of my favorites in Western-European black doom death rock etc.; they never seem to do anything half-arsed, and Lede is a very all-in release, one of the best I've yet heard this year.
We also heard what probably amounts to High On Fire's best song, one I never get tired of at least; that and a song from the new Hebosagil CD ...ahh! My first time playing the Finnish band on My Castle of Quiet, but damn I waited too long, because "Melvins-y Finnish Wire" is a band description that speaks to some dark, inner need I didn't know I had until I heard them. Also remarked upon were: the great new Lumpy & The Dumpers album | Facialmess | Klaus Schulze
The news? A LIVE SET next week from NJ's great TOXICOLOGY. Join us!
Week after, I'm thinking its high time for another Scandinavian Prog Special, you tell me. Here's v.1 from almost one year ago (how time flies in the land of the midnight sun!), one of our more visited archives... Scandinavian Prog Special 3rd June 2015
Wednesday, May 4, 2016
One drunk commenter on one message board is legion, and one redhead per customer, please. (Wait, I didn't get mine!) ...You can't buy evil in a bottle, and People Think They Know Things (myself included), this much I am sure of. Good listeners (may) inherit the Earth, because everyone else is so busy talking; talking "at" and not "to" or "with." ...
I enjoy our weekly meeting; we need only a feast-filled table to make it complete. Some would throw food. Some would be too drunk. Some would be cryptically brief, while others would go on at considerable length like a ticker-tape of personal concerns. It's all pretty alright w/ me. For all our intents and purposes, our playlist IS a real hall, in a real Castle.
New Alkerdeel whipped us out into the field. Very fulfilling to hear a new full-length from the maverick Belgian prototypers of "blackened doom"—they still do it the best and most unpredictably.
Listeners also liked the new Graves at Sea | Order of the Owl | vintage Negativland | Pigs Blood Absolute Power | Tötenköpf (1978 Swiss Stooge-worship; that said, weird as fuck) ... new tracks from Haley Fohr (as Jackie Lynn) and the unstoppable Cape of Bats also dazzled. Archival live recordings by kraut demi-gods Harmonia closed us out.
I don't recall where this week's pop-art redhead was captured. Help me out? My best guess is Tragic Ceremony, only based upon the image file's dating in my Movie Captures folder. She will nonetheless, take you to the archived audio for last night's horrorcast™ , the informative and colorful playlist (abundant with album-cover art etc.), and the rollicking comments board.
More great, live music on The Castle in two weeks (5/17-18)—NJ once again strafes our polluted earth, with a real-time set from TOXICOLOGY.