Wednesday, November 25, 2015

i was listening to this while trying to sleep, it was great

The Female Chimera
was the title of last night's horrorcast™. Chimera? "...a fire-breathing female monster, usually part lion, goat, and serpent. Because of this derivation, chimera and its adjective, chimerical, came to mean something illusory, fantastical, hoped-for but impossible." Sometimes I don't know what I'm saying or writing really, until sometime later when I reexamine my choices. Inspired by that beguiling screen capture above from Spring, I plucked the title from the air, true significance to be filled in later.

Last night's show was certainly female, and serpentine; the path clear for a while, only to suddenly spur off elsewhere. I say this with deference to Hercyn, whose live set was delayed some 20+ minutes (and no, they were not standing right there, waiting to play—I'm not that much of a bastard) by organic, free-flowing conversation with our guest Tiffany Minx, the formidable / former proprietor of Apop Records in St. Louis, a store with a history of great taste, integrity, celebrating music's farthest fringes, and hosting many a memorable live show. WE GOT TO TALKIN'...things happen; and we hope some or all or most of our banter was engaging for those listening.

When you meet another high-ranking member of your tribe, so much simply being understood, conversations happen—not necessarily on the radio, of course...but Ms. Minx and I found ourselves quite engaged and engaging, hoping that some of you did too.

Then came Hercyn's mighty, barely contained exuberance. "That was superb stuff" as one listener commented.... I'm finding more and more that good, thoughtfully rendered rock music is just good rock music, that definitions are not at all important, and that genre reductions only attempt to corner something that's just happening, because the right players got together in the right room at the right time (Couch Slut also come to mind, as in "what do they do? Who cares, it's amazing (live set from MCoQ, January at that link ^) ...

So, Hercyn, riffs and arrangements that, at least at first, take me to wispy thoughts of prog heaven, perhaps something like Anekdoten—then suddenly I'm riding an air-chariot with forgotten gods, screaming at the wind that yes, we're coming. It's rich, heady stuff, perhaps not for short-loud-fast-type attention spans, but there's a lot of reward for those who listen, raw-but-baroque shanties that recall perhaps Enslaved, or vintage Wolves In The Throne Room. Maybe I'm reaching, but regardless, I admire the romance of what they do and its many layers. Hercyn's set is slated for release on cassette, sometime soon.

Other playlist nods went to Tyrants of Hell (Wohrt Records) | Cape of Bats | Black Aura | while personal highs included new popnihil cassettes, from Warground / Hithaeglir, Crowhurst, and Burnt Hair; Leash; Cuntz; Infernal Stronghold; Unspeakable; and an excerpt from one of my year's favorite releases on cassette, a sprawling, hypnotic piece of articulated gloom by Ateh Gibor Le'olam Shaitan.

Thanks for listening, regards to Hercyn, and Tiffany Minx.
...back next week with more face-punching diversion.

Wednesday, November 18, 2015

...the darkness which just exudes all around

No, I do not have a captivity-torture setup in my basement, but I'd build one for the right gal! I'm adaptable; one of the benefits of aging is that some at least become more capable of growth.

Glad to be back on air after a week off, recharged and with the music cup running over as always.

Pretty intrigued by that Invisible Guest cassette, of which we heard a side...came to me with no info, and is quite good—just the kind of languid, eerie instrumental music I'm listening to a lot of late—so whomever you are, Invisible Guest, perfect timing!

Other personal highs included, but were not limited to:  Unspeakable (St. Louis) | new Yellow Eyes (pre order) | Grip | new punk LPs from Soft Shoulder & Cuntz | Moonspawn | the Warground / Hithaeglir split cs on pop nihil ...

Much listener enthusiasm for: the great Cape of Bats (recently heard them for the first time, an immediate favorite, just dripping with all the things I love) | vintage PiL | vintage Birthday Party (I realized that I play The Birthday Party & Nick Cave about as often as Matt Warwick plays Can, and that's just fine | Vorpal Sword (coming soon, here) | great new DA LP (DA shop)

Another still this week from Catherine Breillat's Bluebeard; I've yet to see a film of hers that I didn't deeply appreciate, all of them human stories, grim, yet artfully composed, almost painted.... Click there to reach the archives and playlist for this week's horrorcast™.

Next week: a LIVE SET from HERCYN ... (FB event)

Wednesday, November 4, 2015


Much to my surprise, and to my knowledge, no paper exists entitled The Apotheosis of the Antiheroine in Literature and Cinema. Why? The answer, all too obvious: Because I, Wm. Michael Berger, did not complete my higher education! How I would have basked in the indulgence of my professors, had I seen that idea through. Nothing stopping me from doing it now, of course, and were I to, Alice Morgan from the Luther series would be my cover girl. Pitiless, arrogant, brilliant, over-proud, loyal to a fault, controlling, easily wounded, irresistibly sexual. I can only hope that some flawless parallel of the Alice Morgan character actually exists, somewhere in the world, and that I stay on her good side, preferably on her very good side. (Alice Morgan so deliciously and enticingly portrayed by Ruth Wilson; credit where credit is so very much due!)

Every boy, then, needs an Alice Morgan; a truth-teller, defender, fly on the wall, perpetual vigilant ally, and lust / love object, hovering eternally at a (very near) distance. What an exciting life that would be! Simply waking up every morning would be a fresh dive into the abyss!

When I listen back these My Castle of Quiet archives every Wednesday, I sometimes think, as I do this week, that I really like my show—I grok the reverence and energy I put into it, revel in the selections, et al.—it'd be a bloody fucking waste if I didn't. That said, I'm a fan first, a person with fans second, and perhaps that's why I never tire of the gratification of knowing that there are those who also like my radio program, for their own reasons perhaps, but still. Every enthused, encouraging, positive and/or wholly irreverent comment on the weekly playlist is appreciated, and donations, well—wasn't I surprised to see that once our program-specific goal had been achieved, listeners continued pledging (including one pledge that came in mid-program last night)—thereby surpassing our goal. Sometimes I feel like Sally Field at the 1985 Oscars...a bit incredulous, humble but definitely very pleased!

Playlist hails last night went to Spiteful Urinator | Grausamkeit | Nuit Noire | Psychic Anomaly

...We heard lots of black metal vinyl last night; LPs and singles (selections of mine left over from Singles Going Steady week on WFMU two weeks prior); I'd mention some personal highs, but I pretty much loved the whole show last night (clearly stated above, but we old men tend to repeat ourselves...)

New, excellent releases did abound from Castle friends and familiars The Communion | Halloween5 (aka Enslaved By Owls) | Yellow Eyes | DA | the aforementioned Nuit Noire... ...and that Mauthausen Orchestra 4xCD box on Urashima is no slouch. Back next week.

Thanks again for your donations and support!