Friday, October 28, 2011

Darkly simmering. ...Last night's horrorcast™ in review, and Prison Tatt joins the Festival Circuit.

Our præ-Hallowe'en broadcast last night opened with the megalithic gloomscape "Supplication," by Akhlys, one of my favorites of recent discovery. Released in 2009, the single-track CDr is packaged in a minimally adorned DVD case, and is a steal at $8 from Hells Headbangers (though I don't see one doing much headbanging to this one.) The piece's truly frightening, ominous textures brought several notices on our playlist.

What else received honors? A track from the new LP by Barghest, black metal from Baton Rouge; the I Am EP by Swedish greats Armagedda (now split-up); a track from the excellent new full-length by Maledicere (thx, Todd!); another song from the flawless new Tukaaria tape on Rhinocervs, coming out on CD later this year from Profound Lore; and, lastly, two lengthy pieces of noise-brut that I've been meaning to play for weeks, from Peele & McGee, and Andrew Quitter, respectively. That was the show. Click on the souls in torment, above, to stream the full three-hour horrorcast, and/or view the playlist and comments.

In addition, enormous, hearty HAILS to all who have pledged this month as part of WFMU's stealth fundraiser to show your love for My Castle of Quiet. We're currently at 85% of our goal for the month-long drive, and I'm already pleased as a life-affirming punch; if we make that 100% goal of a solid grand within the few remaining days of October, it's icing on the proverbial, jaw-dislocating cake. Thanks again!

Onto new business, my label, Prison Tatt Records, hits the festival circuit this Saturday, for one day only, as part of WFMU's grand 2011 Record Fair. We'll be at table F-4; look for us next to the midget horse, the bearded lady (actually, she looks more like Scott Weiland with breasts), and the wax statue I got cheap of the great Vincent Price (was left too close to heater; now looks more like Victor Buono.) Doors open Saturday at 10 a.m., at The Metropolitan Pavilion, 125 West 18th Street, between 6th and 7th Avenues.

What will I have for sale? A staggering overview of musics new and old, domestic and foreign, rock collectibles, and that dusty old LP you've been looking for since you were 10? Uh, no. I market to the niche, baby. So comfortable in the niche have I become, in fact, that I've unfolded a lawn chair, mixed up a jug of piña coladas, and gingerly placed cucumber slices on my eyelids.

What I will have, is 20-25 copies of every in-print Prison Tatt title, $1 stickers, and all PT distro items, everything discounted from our Web-store prices. You may also see our pal Bob Bellerue signing KILT CDs, maaaaaybe.

Now I must sleep; the sleep of the damned, until tomorrow's event takes over my consciousness fully and irreversibly. See you there, fuckers. Come on up say high.

Friday, October 21, 2011

Stones in the hands!

...and you're gonna get it! Being "in the gang," does not necessarily ensure one's position amongst the living; in fact, it can often enhance the openings for one to wind up dead in one's boots.

Last night's show was a horrorcast™ of horrorcasts, and we've been having a lot of those lately. As my personal self steadily declines, my propensity to make good art rises exponentially. "Rise, William, Rise" in-deed. It would be a "bummer" to suggest the inverse, but what goes up....

Our good friends Bobby B., and Mister Matthews, at this point regular Castle residents (I pass them in the morning, in their tattered, stained terrycloth robes, dunking a teabag in one of our massive skull-and-crossbone teacups, leaning against the marble, as woozy "hey"'s are exchanged across the massive kitchen) helped to make it a program to be reckoned with, an extra special of specials. MM's solo sets, strikingly diverse from one another, delivered and then some, and Bob's programming choices made for a crowd-pleasing (and host pleasing) middle set.

>>> THIS JUST IN—My Castle of Quiet's individual pledge total for WFMU's October 2011 "stealth" fundraiser just today leapt to 81% of our goal. Someone(s) out there likes us. Apparently, it IS important to have a regular radio home for "[b]lack metal, dark hardcore, modern "noise," occult-kosmische electronics, soundtracks, and horrorscapes™ galore." Seriously chuffed. Thanks a million, Castleheads! <<<

In comments-board accolades, our special guest, Mister Matthews, reaped the lion's share (and rightly so.) From Bob's excellent array, Night Burger, Black Leather Jesus, Concern and Crank Sturgeon all received tips of the hat, on and off the air. Kudos, Bob. Come back any time. Back to my final horrorcast set, both Kavra (one of my favorite bands of the moment) and Portugal's Vetala (whom I "discovered" via Seed Stock's guest-DJ stint a few weeks ago, both pleased the horde.

Can't thank you all enough for listening, and to those of you who were also able to contribute, thanks for bringing us so perilously close to full, tumescent goalhood. Only 19% to go for our show to meet its goal total, and since the world is ending, and you can't take it with you—well, tra la la! Have at it!

Next week—the show as usual, what you mostly come to the decks for, though all the special programming and live performances obviously add their own zazz and pizazz, not to mention that I fuckin' love it. Mister Matthews' sets will be shared on mp3, within two weeks' time, by way of WFMU's Web portals.

For now, you can hear the full, three-hour horrorcast, by clicking on that damned member of Kakihara's gang, askance in a world of white feathers though he is. The head through the TV comes later.

Thursday, October 20, 2011

TONIGHT on The Castle >Mr. Matthews' True Color of Venus Revue, with High School Confidential, and special guest Bob Bellerue

Mister Matthews has been a friend, cohort and "responsible party" for the My Castle of Quiet program nearly since its inception. As a member of Telecult Powers, The Hex Breaker Quintet, and a performer of The Modern Rites of Pei with Telecult Powers and Lala Ryan (during WFMU's 2010 fundraiser), MM is one of players who's made our Studio B a second home, and it's high time that he was invited back to The Castle to put forth his remarkable solo work as High School Confidential. Stretching his legs a bit (as all good friends of the show are invited to do), he also brings Mr. Matthews' True Color of Venus Revue, in the artist's words, "another kind of thing I have been working on, caustic tripped out new age music"—which promises by its very definition to be appropriate to the usual, meta-occult electronics that are an indelible and near-constant parcel of Castle programming. Also on hand the same evening, another good friend—composer, improvisor, and Anarchymoon Recordings label head Bob Bellerue (Diablo, KILT) who, in addition to engineering the live session, will be co-hosting and co-DJ'ing with your regular, weekly Bastard of Ceremonies.

Three friends, raising a different kind of hell; don't miss it.

Angry villagers attempt to carry me off to my fate on the Judas Cradle @ 12 midnight.
Fun begins almost immediately.
WFMU 91.1 FM (NY/NJ)
WMFU 90.1 FM (Hudson Valley) live on the Web, with live accu-playlist, message board and pledge "widget" for WFMU's Web-only October fundraiser (see below.)

Friday, October 14, 2011

Rise em well.

Above-depicted is the she-creature, the spreader of the demonic-possession/homicidal/blood virus from the [REC] movies, and well, I have a few things to say. I know you don't get out much, okay not at all, but still, put a bra on those floppers, honey! They're more horrifying than your ability to spread baby-arm-size infectious "control" larvae by mouth. As we say here in Jersey, "just sayin'." Second, it was ultimately a nice touch by the writer-producers working in the demonic-possession angle in the sequel, as otherwise, there would have been no reason for a sequel—The Crazies, set in a Barcelona tenement once, was once enough. Other than these items, carry on. More than a few "YAHHHH!" moments in [REC]².

So much shit going on; but busy is good, don't get me wrong....

First of all, WFMU's "stealth" fundraiser marches on, and this week, The Castle officially hit 35% of the way to our goal for the month of $1,000, though that's still ultimately a long way off. If you've ever got your jollies listening to the show, and/or feel that there should be a reliable radio home for black metal, contemporary noise, horror-film soundtracks, and all the other "bad vibes" we spread, please consider pledging whatever you're able to give. You can do that right here, or at any one of our playlist pages. Black candles burning (you can smell the wax) aplenty to all those who have pledged thus far.

On to Prison Tatt Records business, we have two great, new titles for sale at the site, Myths by Husere Grav, and the Abandon 2010 demo vinyl reissue by Ives. Available reasonably priced and postpaid at $15 in the continental U.S. If you live in the NY area, or are planning to visit for the WFMU record fair, I'll be running a Prison Tatt table (Sat. 10/29 ONLY), where most label and distro items will be available, further discounted from the Web prices. These discs are so hot, and I'm so fucking proud, I kind of thought they would surely sell themselves, but here I am, making an effort! For further convincing, see our site yet again for song samples, and .png files of the LP-insert art.

We'll also be holding our first live event, a Prison Tatt Records showcase of sorts, featuring released and soon-to-be-released artists The Communion, Husere Grav, Long Distance Poison and Todd Pendu's Chaos*Majik (whose Telestic Madness - Magickal Musick CD releases on 11/11.) This event takes over The Cameo Gallery, @ 93 N.6th St., in the Northside neighborhood of Williamsburg/Greenpoint, Brooklyn, on the eve of Thursday, November 10th. See fleshed-out details at this Facebook event page for the show. Please note that WFMU-FM has nothing whatsoever to do with the Prison Tatt label, financial or otherwise—it's only that I work at both places, and that several of the artists originally celebrated on the My Castle of Quiet program quite naturally came to be Prison Tatt artists.

Back to radio business, next week we present Mister Matthews' True Color of Venus Revue, featuring High School Confidential, and special guest co-host and co-DJ, longtime Castle friend Bob Bellerue. More special programming to separate your webbed toes and get the blood flowing. And speaking of special programming, the Black Twilight Circle sets from last week's horrorcast™ will post within the week, as downloadable mp3s, to WFMU's Web portals; this is seriously some of the best music I have ever had the pleasure to present on our airwaves.

This week, or last night to be most precise, it was I who was "Stained, Tainted"—in too many ways to reasonably or thoroughly discuss in a single blog post. But on I go, fearless. A cracked mirror, that which reflects a distorted image, is my life. Not surfing. And what did you like? Castleheads chimed in unison for the Vesicus tape, one of the best left-field black metal tapes I've heard in a while, and I hear quite a few. Buy that one from Graceless Recordings. Also—the new Grasshopper LP on Baked Tapes, a stunner, and the Wulkanaz 7" on Seed Stock (I called it; black metal single of the year!)

For now, I leave you with miss femininity; click on that too-close-for-comfort portrait to access the playlist and streaming-audio archive of last night's horrorcast. I got a saw troat from awl dis typing.

Saturday, October 8, 2011

Dark Hallucinogenic Black Metal!

I envisioned a dusty parking lot, not here, perhaps in the part of N.J. where things are a bit more spread out, where they actually have fields and forests—where the name "Garden State" was earned. And in that wheezy lot, a pickup truck, parked strategically for maximum highway view, and slung over the bed a banner, made with maximum care out of a white bedsheet and a can of Krylon, a banner that reads, "Welcome Black Twilight Circle."

Of course, it didn't happen that way; it happened with hastily texted PATH directions, and a mass of hearty-looking, black-clad musicians appearing at WFMU's door in downtown Jersey City some time later. Wary smiles and hearty handshakes, it became slowly clear to me that these guys had immense humility to match their immense talent. Who would think of forming a collective of black-metal musicians, consequently strengthened by their unity, and a certain quality standard that you knew was being brought to the table? Artist collectives were a thing of the 60s and 70s, right? Well, the music was never like this.

This was, without doubt, one of the most historic radio events I have ever been parcel to presenting, creativity and artistry abounding around the room and onto the airwaves. Immense and powerful sets by Arizmena, Volahn, Shataan, The Haunting Presence (a personal favorite; unholy, dark guitar!), Kuxan Suum, Kallathon, and Dolorvotre (who were able to blast out only one, earth's-crust-shattering song, as three hours does eventually run out, remarkably so.)

I'll save my deeper observations and musings, perhaps, for the larger post, on WFMU's Beware of The Blog and Free Music Archive, where these historical sets will be shared on mp3 for all to download and enjoy (an idea, by the way, that I did not at all have to oversell to the BTC, their notions of collectivism and community again coming into play, exemplifying their honor.)

So listen, for now by clicking on the voodoo priestess above, because I still can't wrap my head around what happened, and I was there! These sets awe me in their greatness, and in the extraordinary diversity and range of human expression presented from group to group. Though many projects in the BTC share members in common, depending on who is driving the bus, the musical context and feel represented by each project is totally different. They call this black metal? It's great American music, based in metal, but with no boundary not worthy of knocking down.

Two people outside of the BTC deserve huge thanks—RB from Seed Stock Records and Raspberry Bulbs, for setting up the event in the first, and Diane"Kamikaze" Farris, for translating the brilliance with her own expertise, and the help of WFMU's mighty mixing desk.

In the regular order of business, playlist notices also went out to the Phantasm Theme by Fred Myrow, newly released 1992 recordings by Christoph Heemann and Jim O'Rourke, and Sleep of Ages (thanks, Travis J.!)

One week from Thursday, My Castle of Quiet presents ""Mr Matthews' True Color of Venus Revue featuring High School Confidential" as the show, now deeply energized, goes on and on. Special guest Bob Bellerue also engineers that evening, and co-hosts and co-DJs with yours truly.

My thanks seem meager in light of what's presented here, but I give them nonetheless, to Eddie and the rest of the Black Twilight Circle, for sharing with WFMU and The Castle their incredible gifts. This show was one for the ages, and I'll proudly present it to my grandkids, or anyone else who asserts that I "don't do anything." Fucking great, beyond all measure.

The BTC is, I'm sure, in no small part responsible, for our program being 23% of the way to our pledge total / goal of $1,000 for the month of October, as it's only the 8th, and WFMU's stealth fundraiser is largely a Web-only, non-intrusive affair. Thanks to everyone who's pledged so far! You too can participate, by employing the pledge widget atop any Castle playlist page.

We move on, from the horrorcast™ to end all horrorcasts, it seems, forever ready to wage war with the future, strengthened by our experiences here. Listen, and be truly amazed.

Wednesday, October 5, 2011

TONIGHT - The Black Twilight Circle invades MCoQ!

Without question, the most innovative black metal coming out of the U.S. today is created by the mysterious collective known as the Black Twilight Circle. Based in Southern California, the grouping of ~a dozen bands release their material for the most part, though not exclusively, on their own Crepusculo Negro records, representing a nearly self-sufficient creative organization. The many, talented bands in the BTC run the gamut from hardcore punk to more traditionally inspired bm, at the same time weaving in elements of psychedelia, Mayan folk music and lore, and new, expansive powers so fresh as to defy description (for example, how does one pin down with words the magnetic and mighty essence of a band like Arizmenda?) As part of their first-ever East Coast tour as a collective, the Black Twilight Circle visit WFMU's My Castle of Quiet, where each of five (or perhaps more?) bands will give a brief but salient representation of their material. Expect to hear short, surging sets by Kallathon, Arizmenda, Dolorvotre, The Haunting Presence, and Volahn.

Altar technicians give the thumbs-up @ midnight.
Bands go on a.s.a.p.
By 3 a.m., we are all knee-deep in Christian blood.
WFMU 91.1 FM (NY/NJ)
WMFU 90.1 FM (Hudson Valley) live on the Web, with live accu-playlist, message board and pledge "widget" for WFMU's Web-only October fundraiser (i.e., no awkward, heavy-handed pitching.)

My Castle of Quiet is, at this point, 7% of the way to our pledge goal for WFMU's show-specific October fundraiser. You can pledge right from the top of our playlist page, easy as Archaeopteryx pie. Let WFMU know that programs like our special with the BTC are appreciated, and are something you'd like to hear more of.