And where do I look for this serenity, that which makes me not loathe the day, waking up, living? Sometimes, Buddhism. I've referred to myself before as a "Satanic Busshist," both for laughs but more often quite seriously. Do I pray? No, but I observe, I read, I observe some more. It's the only world religion that by definition that is strictly non-dogmatic; there are no "Buddhist fundamentalists" trying to take over the world, or spearing Muslim women and children on the ends of swords, like some Hindus do. Buddhism says, "feel good," "don't envy, don't struggle, don't yearn; these will all lead to unhappiness." No big THOU SHALT NOTs with Buddhism. Or at least, only good ones, great ones even.
Which leads me, somewhat ridiculously, to this week's film recommendation - a colorful, funny, violent, silly, and thoroughly entertaining film called Journey To The West. The giant hand of Buddha literally saves the day, not to give out a spoiler. Chinese horror in general has always been populated with Taoist priests who swoop in and defeat all evil and malice. Journey... features a band of demon hunters, colorful, campy characters with absurd powers, who cheerfully do battle and die with absurd bravery. It's loads of fun.
A movie I really hated, this week? I Used To Be Darker, one of those films that will leave you wondering why this film needed to be made, or its story told. Populated with miserable people, cold, capricious women especially. I don't appreciate the reinforcement of negative female stereotypes, especially as female filmmakers were involved. Why? Bah, what a piece of soul-hammering crap THAT was! Do not be fooled by the small-scale, indie drama charms of its trailer - the best scene was a party scene, that featured Dope Body playing a bitchin' song (free download at that link!), very much the postmodern Jesus Lizard they appear to be. ...Horror films are my refuge from the this type of cinema, anything "Sundance selects"...the banal portrayal of everyday human suffering, that which we get already just by living and engaging.
So, a windfall of praise on our playlist for a song from the latest Cattle Decapitation album. They deserve all the love they get; I saw a show in SF in 2009 that I'll never forget (remember Spike, we were there together, that was a fun night / Cephaic Carnage, too!); Travis was doing his usual spit acrobatics, and insulting goons in the pit, the latter so deftly that the targets didn't even realize...and their playing, and the whole thrust of that set was just perfect. If I ever leave the house to see live music again, it will be because of the memory of shows like that one.
I also quite liked our opening selection from Cara Neir, both Hells (France and USA), new tracks by Bleak, Excepter and Barrikad. Praise on the playlist, also, for a now-"classic" black metal track by Furdidurke, from the very memorable split 7" from 2006 with Bone Awl.
I'm off next week, gentleman Jeff Conklin, a friend, and guest on our show previously, will be filling in and I'm quite sure you'll enjoy his show.
Live music to come in the weeks ahead, from Bleak and Hell Mary (July 30) and NYC's Privilege on our August 6th show.
Click on this week's MCoQ screen capture, from the clever, witty, charmingly violent You're Next, to reach our playlist, streaming audio, and listener comments for this week's horrorcast™. Thank you all for listening, and participating on the playlist, it really amps up the whole experience of doing radio for me, so it's much appreciated! See you in two weeks. ...