Nate Fitzbutler did a remix to Kanye West’s and Kendrick Lamar’s “No More Parties in LA” called “No More Parties in SD”. He said, "we made this track to try to bring some national buzz to our city that’s always been in the shadow of the LA music scene."

Niko Sitaras from the San Diego based dream rock band Paper Days says, "We just released our new EP 'Fun For Family & Friends'. Our release party is on Feb 19th being hosted at the Irenic (with The Bash Dogs & Splavender). 

Panic Is Perfect is an indie-pop group from San Fran and they are touring in support of their new album, Cellspace, which drops tomorrow on Strange Loop Records. They'll be playing at The Loft @ UCSD on Feb. 12!





 

 

 

 

 

The Films of Kenneth Anger: Volume I & II
(Fantoma) Keith Boyd 10.26.07
How to review this treasure trove of visionary cinema? It's hard to give Kenneth Anger a context if you aren't aware of him already. He's an independent director of a couple handfuls of extremely singular films dating from the late 40's to the early 80's. Perhaps the true flowering and manifestation of his genius was in the 1960's. During that decade he created such masterpieces as, "Scorpio Rising", "Invocation of My Demon Brother" and "Lucifer Rising". These movies are not whatsoever the usual plot driven Hollywood dreck. They are full color, psychedelic rituals rendered with a love and attention to detail rarely seen in film. They are beautiful kinetic collages that both terrify and intrigue with heavily saturated colors and layers of symbolic meaning. Kenneth Anger's fame with the general public is based almost exclusively on his best-selling 1960 book, "Hollywood Babylon," whose scandalous revelations transcended gossip. But a more limited audience knows Anger as a brilliant and stridently independent filmmaker. This reputation rests on nine short films totaling about three hours' length. Plagued by calamities that have included financial problems, threats, despair, lost films, stolen ones and seizure of footage by labs on the ground of obscenity, his output has not been prolific. But his impact on American film and television has been substantial.

It was in Anger's work that raw popular culture first found its place on the big screen. Anger's "Scorpio Rising" revolutionized Martin Scorcese's use of soundtrack music (as he notes in his loving forwards to both volumes). David Lynch's "Blue Velvet" bears the imprint of Anger's perversity. The exotic lighting and gay iconography of Fassbinder's "Querelle" has been compared to Anger's. Indeed, Anger's pioneering work in juxtaposing sound and image, his rapid editing and evocative tableaux can be cited as major influences on the shape of the commercials and music videos that permeate our culture today.

Kenneth Anger was born in 1930 in Hollywood , where his grandmother was a silent-film wardrobe mistress in the studios. At the age of four, Anger played the changeling prince in Max Reinhardt's film, "A Midsummer Night's Dream." (This fact however has been greatly disputed in subsequent years). Later, he danced with Shirley Temple. This early inundation with Hollywood culture started his lifelong fascination with glamour, scandal and stars. When he was seven, he started his filmmaking career with the family's home movie camera. In 1947, at the age of seventeen, while his parents were at a funeral, Anger made his prize-winning film, "Fireworks," which became one of the classic films of the underground cinema and a source for gay iconography. It was in this film that he first examined and celebrated the rites of underground or marginal groups. Anger himself played the dreamer. In 1949, he began "Puce Moment," of which only a fragment was completed, due to lack of financing. This was to unfortunately become a recurrent theme in Kenneth Anger's artistic life.


While a teenager, Anger was introduced to and deeply influenced by the work of Aleister Crowley, legendary master of the occult and author of voluminous works on "magick." Anger has said that he means his films "to cast a spell, to be a magical invocation of his fusion of dreams, desire, myth and vision." Fully cognizant of the seductive powers of film, he used it in a ritualistic way, as a magical instrument, to communicate the power and poetry of Crowley 's "Thelema" which had become his chosen religion.

In 1950, Anger moved to Paris , and within a year the desperation of crushing poverty led him to attempt suicide. He also began "Rabbits' Moon," a lyrical fable of the unattainable, blending Commedia Dell'Arte with Japanese mythology, which he did not complete until 1970. In Paris , he met Edith Piaf, Colette, Henri Langlois, Chanel, Jean Genet (whose sensibility he shares in many ways, and Jean Cocteau. Cocteau proved to be both an influence on and a champion of Anger. He stated that "Fireworks" is, "a film that came from that beautiful night from which emerge all true works. It touches the quick of the soul, and this is very rare." In Italy in 1953, Anger made the eerily beautiful "Eaux d'Artifice." His poetic sense and technical skill made it a tour de force of rhythmic editing. In 1954 Anger moved back to Hollywood and made his psychedelic epic, "The Inauguration of the Pleasure Dome." By this time, Anger's interest in the occult resulted in a film based on the elaborate rituals practiced by Aleister Crowley; In "Inauguration...," a convocation of magicians assume the identities of pagan gods and goddesses in a Dionysian revelry. Anger spent the late Sixties and early Seventies in England , where he involved British pop stars in his work. Anger inspired the Rolling Stones' hit "Sympathy for the Devil." Mick Jagger scored Anger's 1969 film, "Invocation of My Demon Brother," using a Moog synthesizer to produce bizarre atonal sounds. "Lucifer Rising"also features Marianne Faithfull as Lilith.

It was in 1964 that Anger completed his best-known work and his masterpiece, "Scorpio Rising." He called it "a death mirror held up to American culture." Set to thirteen pop songs including "He's a Rebel", "Heat Wave," and "Wipeout" (whose expensive and unsatisfactorily cleared rights ultimately led to its withdrawal from video release), images of bikers, Christ and his disciples, the grim reaper, and others are interspersed to form a complex picture of what Anger saw as the violent and fetishistic obsessions of youth. It is a kaleidoscope of images, sometimes comical in tone that expresses pop culture in a compelling and disturbing way. "Kustom Kar Kommandos," a short, camp classic followed in 1965. From 1970 - 1980, Anger worked periodically on "Lucifer Rising," which he has referred to as "visual music." Shot in exotic locations all over the world but always evoking Egypt , the film invokes Lucifer in his oft-forgotten role (and name-translation) as light-bearer. Bobby Beausoleil appears as Lucifer and composed its score from the prison cell where he had begun serving a life sentence for his part in the Charles Manson murders. It was Anger's last completed film.

Anger has often argued that Crowley 's teachings are the focal point of all his films, but to the uninitiated, the work deals more broadly with sexuality, myth, popular culture and ritual. One could see its main objective as inflaming the senses through delirious (though magickally systematic) use of color and exhilarating visual energy synchronized with arousing music. Although some works look like Cecil B. DeMille on a low budget, Anger's wry irony is nearly always in evidence, undercutting any accusations of pretension. The need for ritual persists in all of Anger's films, and very few filmmakers have explored the boundaries of filmmaking the way he has, particularly at the convergence of cult and culture.

These two collections represent the first time Anger's films have been available to the general public. The original prints have been meticulously cleaned and transferred to DVD. The amazing extras include Anger's film by film commentary, alternate soundtrack options and 2 short never before seen features. Each set comes with a booklet of commentaries (by film makers such as Gus Van Sant and Martin Scorsese) and vivid photographs. Finally this visionary artist has been given his proper place in the history of cinema.

 


    Lotushouse MP3 Sampler
    Maquiladora - The Revenge of Becky Royal (New Piano)
    Tenniscoats + Maquiladora - Hours
    High Mountain Tempel - Processional (An Invocation to Thee Angelic Sister)
    Raagnagrok - HJD
    Beggars - Will We Call It Love
    Maquiladora - Termez 1936
    Maquiladora - Song 26
    Buzz or Howl - Sendhe Mortu Chin Rigore
    Earthling Tempel - Celestial Inhabitants of the Sun
    Buzz or Howl - The Sins Of The Flower Are Visited On The Shunned
    Maquiladora - Light of the Rain
    High Mountain Tempel - The Ascended Master (Hang Gliding in Heaven)
    High Mountain Tempel - Fluctuat Nec Mergitur
    High Mountain Tempel - Tempel Walk
    Buzz or Howl - 05 Oct 05
    Buzz or Howl - Sun as the Destroyer of Dreams
    Live version at the Make Room SF 2005
    Maquiladora - In This Life
    Maquiladora - Simply to See You
    Maquiladora with Kawabata Makoto - Nampasen
    Maquiladora Maquiladora - Drunk and Lighting Fires (A Waltz)
    Maquiladora Maquiladora - Ritual of Hearts
    Maquiladora Maquiladora - Ankle
    Maquiladora - Mayday
    Loraine Loraine - Pasqually Old Pasqually

    Beggars - S/T
    by Pierro Scaruffi

    Maquiladora's Eric Nielsen and Bruce McKenzie joined forces with Skygreen Leopards' Glenn Donaldson to form Beggars, whose double-disc Beggars (Lotushouse, 2013) is a tour de force of ecstatic Eastern-influenced freak-folk. Mostly these pieces lean towards the traditional song format, although inevitably deformed by the musicians' pedigrees.

    The ghostly hyper-dilated drones of Ghost Coyote are imbued with quasi-Morricone western-movie guitar twang and even harmonica. The sweet lullaby and the trotting pace of Eureka My Love as well as the romantic honky-tonking Justine (with a refrain a bit reminiscent of Dylan's Blowing in the Wind) hark back to the heydays of country-rock. 2-3-74 Floating evokes the martial laments of the young Neil Young although diluted amid discordant guitar jamming and lulled by waves of funereal vocal harmonies. Berserker's Boogie is a lively and poppy almost-bluegrass tune. They even intone the singalong Queen Anne's Lace with drums, banjo and all.

    Thankfully, the spaced-out yodeling of Lullaby de Bourbon (memories of Aoxomoxoa-era Grateful Dead), the free-form quasi-jazz guitar and vocal interplay of Will We Call It Love, the seven-minute dreaming psalm Big Pink Sun and its sublimely disintegrating coda, remind us of what Maquiladora are best at. The 23-minute Midget Decapitates Clownis an ambitious concerto for suspense and agony. Far from being just a droning piece, it piles up sonic event after sonic event, producing the trancey effect out of a multitude of traumatic sounds. The chirping and tweeting that accumulates half-way into the piece decays into a nervous organic filigree and dies away in the most cryptic manner; one of the high points of Maquiladora's career.


    Earthling Tempel - Pilgrimage To Thunderbolt Pagoda
    by Aquarius Records

    Not sure if this is part 4, or just the first in a new multi part epic, hardly matters, what does matter is, this is another glorious expansive collection of meditative psychedelic abstract dronefolk ambience. Every High Mountain Tempel disc we're reviewed thus far has gotten played to death here, and this one doesn't appear to be any different. Well, at least in that respect. In one distinct way it is very different, HMT are not going it alone this time. They've assembled a pretty impressive collection of sonic alchemists and musical conjurers to help with this ritual, Isis Aquarian from the Source Family, Charles Curtis from La Monte Young's Just Alap Raga Ensemble, and two crews from the UK we've never heard of, Earthling Society and Astarism, but even with all those cooks in the kitchen, HMT and friends have managed to weave another dark minimal masterpiece, all hushed barely there guitar shimmer, drifting whispered vocals, delicate crystalline melodies, dense swirls of piano, warm swells of tape hiss, mysterious voices and field recordings, whirring organ, bowed steel strings... so lovely.

    If the liner notes are to be believed, two of the tracks feature Earthling Society on their own, and those tracks do sound different, much less free and sprawling, a bit more structured, like seventies UK acid folk, swirling and melodic and quite lovely. The final two tracks find the two groups in full on collaborative mode, and the gears shift to something much more space rocky and Hawkwindy, all blissed out and heart-of-the-sun, until the final track which is a strummy, delicate, moody chill out closer, a sort of dour doom folk drift, that makes a perfect ending.

    Super nice packaging, silkscreened oversized 4 panel sleeve, white on black, with the cd-r affixed to the inside. And of course, SUPER LIMITED!

    High Mountain Tempel - The Glass Bead Game by Aquarius Records

    Part three in the ongoing series of limited cd-r explorations from mysterious drone combo High Mountain Tempel, and like the two before it, the band continue to delve into some murky sonic underworld, again presenting loooong songs, each separated by brief sonic interludes, this disc seems feature more actual vocals, the opening track features a processed voice, that sounds a bit like throat singing, or a Speak And Spell, intoning some arcane message, interwoven with long drawn out tones, and a thick ropy buzz, super dark and intense and atmospheric. Elsewhere sampled voices surface, there are bits of chanting here and there, all peppered throughout the disc. But even with the extra voices, the focus here is still on dark, lugubrious, extended dronescapes.

    The sound of High Mountain Tempel is probably closest to Expo '70, as their various permutations of dronemusic seem to have a definite krautrock vibe, that gives the sound a sort of spaced out quality, and a subtle propulsion, but unlike Expo '70, HMT seem to have a distinct Eastern influence, much of the music is meditative and subtly dramatic, a bit soundtracky, and some of it sounds like it could be Japanese. Especially the way field recordings are incorporated into the sounds. Giving everything a definite texture, some of it sounding like it was perhaps recorded live in some hilltop temple. Which we would imagine is the idea.

    Not sure what else to say actually. This is indeed fantastic, brooding and malefic, but also shimmery and dreamy, sonically it has much in common with the first two installments, so definitely check out those reviews to read more about their 'sound'.

    Needless to say, fans of the drone and folks into the current crop of cd-r soundscapers will for sure dig this, but like the other HMT discs, this is more than simple drone music, this is ritualistic alchemical soundwork, one can almost imagine stumbling across a group of cloaked figures huddled around a fire in a forest clearing, tossing various powders into the flames, causing the fire to change color and cast beastlike shadows on the branches above, and this is the sound filtering through the forest like a black moonlit fog...
    SUPER LIMITED of course, packaged beautifully in a foldover silkscreened sleeve, gold metallic on red on the outside, black on red on the inside.

    High Mountain Tempel - A Screaming Comes Across The Sky - The Faultline Scriptures
    by Aquarius Records

    Record number two from this mysterious drone-kraut styled duo. Their last disc was a huge hit around here, so we were pretty thrilled to get our hands on this one, a logical sonic extension of the first, delving deeper into some murky tripped out twilit soundworld.
    The disc opens with shimmering clouds of gongs and cymbals, whirring and sizzling, suspended over a deep distant rumble, a delicate intro to a record at once hypnotic and lovely, dark and dense.

    The record is arranged into three epic tracks, interspersed with short sonic interludes, ranging from field recordings of crickets, looped chants (Elizabeth Clare Prophet if we're not mistaken), spirituals and mysterious liturgical songs, whirring drones, and backwards percussion, but it's the long tracks where the duo get to spread out, let their dense soundscapes sprawl.

    The three long tracks sounds like movements of a greater whole, clocking in at 15 minutes, 11 minutes and nearly 17 minutes respectively, each rife with creepy delayed vocals, churning guitars and smeared chords, roiling muddy whirls, which often dissipate leaving streaks of fragmented melody and haunting slowed down voices. Buried amidst the drones and whirs, are lullaby-like melodies, skittery percussion, streaks of grinding distortion, hidden voices, more field recordings, thick swaths of cavernous rumbles, little bits of electronic glitch and lots and lots of low end buzz.

    Packaged in a fancy navy blue fold over sleeve, screenprinted in white ink, with a photocopied insert with liner notes and song credits.

    LIMITED TO 150 COPIES! Each one hand numbered.

 

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