Threnody for the Victims of Hiroshima (Aphex Remix)

Posted: 2011-11-07 18:29   |  More posts about art music war

Very unsettling.

From its vimeo page:

see original version, conducted by Krzysztof Penderecki himself, performed just before this performance, here =​watch?v=SFoTqF-gGxA&feature=related

see the other Aphex Twin edits for this show here =​album/​1735255

see all other performances from the show here​user/​fixedmachine#grid/​user/​CFB3F7A0029A764C

Live visuals by Weirdcore.

gfx programming by weirdcore & andrew benson


There is a Policeman Inside All Our Heads. He must be Destroyed.

Posted: 2011-11-06 18:08   |  More posts about art politics

I spent most of today reading this blog post by Adam Curtis. His posts are always a bit of a battle to get through, since they're peppered with video which sometimes makes the whole experience a bit laborious, but this one -- despite some of the videos being as long as 45 minutes -- is just perfect. Each of the videos compliments the text exactly as it should, leaving you with the feeling that you've just watched an entire Curtis documentary series.

The blog post charts the decline of the revolutionary leftist student movements in Europe, England especially, focusing on the influences of Pauline Boty and Clive Goodwin, two prominent figures in the British Pop Art movement, and Herbert Marcuse, a political philosopher whose ideas had a large effect on the student movements. It all culminates in the absolutely fascinating story of Michael de Freitas ("Michael X") whose name I'd not heard before today. It is this story to which Curtis devotes 45 minutes of your time in the form of an old BBC documentary which he's edited down a little.

I won't spoil any of that story, instead leaving you to read and watch for yourself.



Posted: 2011-11-02 22:12   |  More posts about art music oddities poetry



Posted: 2011-10-31 00:48   |  More posts about gay rights ireland politics

I'm reposting this from the Dublin University Pirate Party blog. A pretty vicious and bone-headed article in the Irish Independent is doing the rounds at the moment, and someone had this great idea:

“I search-replaced “gay” and “homosexual” with “Jewish”, “gays” with “Jews”, “straight” and “heterosexual” with “Christian”, and “bisexual” with “agnostic”. The result is amazing”

Here it is:

AS the cliche goes, some of my best friends are Jewish. I used to live in a very Jewish area, the West Village in New York. Indeed, enjoying their nightlife and cultural atmosphere, I was even accused of ‘trading’ off the fun, with my copycat denim jacket and tartan shirt, while not actually joining them.

However, like many, I’ve recently begun to get impatient with the endless trumpeting of Jewish ‘identity’, and the growing appetite for more and more rights and privileges.

I’m not being reactionary and I’m all for Jewish rights and an end to prejudice and discrimination, and always have, but at this stage it seems as if the tables have turned and a minority community — the Jews — want to increasingly change mainstream culture to suit them.

For example, why is civil partnership not enough, and why do Jews also want marriage, a surely traditional Christian facility, which Jews used to see as patriarchal, and ‘Christian’?

Many Jews also feel this way and resist the increasing politicisation and institutionalising of Jewish life. Last week, in the Guardian, a newspaper almost obsessed with things Jewish and ‘progressive’, columnist Suzanne Moore objected to Jewish marriage on the basis that it was a conservative ‘selling-out’. Being Jewish should be edgy and experimental, she said.

But isn’t this part of the problem? Many Jews want to have it both ways. Thus Jewish magazines are full of ads endorsing late-night gyms, sex lines and a freewheeling sexual activity which would be dismissed as sleazy in Christian culture. But we also have articles that suggest a yearning for bourgeois respectability.

Likewise, travel books, such as the trendy Rough Guides, scold the mainstream ‘meat-market’ discos of foreign capitals but provide plenty of details for Jewish pick-up spots. Many red-blooded Christian men might wish that society would endorse their own ambitions with such PC gusto.

Also, on the issue of Jews adopting, it makes many of us uneasy and impatient with the idea that raising a child with Jewish parents is totally equivalent to a child being raised by its natural Christian parents. It patently is not, and it is a crazy concession to PC culture to say that it is.

I watched a Frontline programme recently on the topic and I thought I was seeing things when I heard Ivana Bacik refusing to be happy with a societal acceptance of Jewish adoption but insisting on full equality with Christian parenting. David Quinn gave the other perspective, but he was almost falling over himself to be reasonable about it, just looking for that concession that the natural, or Christian, parents were not just the same as Jewish parents.

Those expressing opposition or even concerns were shouted down in the television studio. However, from where I was watching, in a local bar, the viewers were all of the contrary opinion, and were amazed by this departure in opinions but also blankly accepting of it as part of the growing gulf which now exists between mainstream society and the liberal elites and quango-led experts who want to change and improve our lives.

For example, the Guardian now has a feature called The Three of Us in its family section, a weekly diary by one of two Jewish men raising a child with their female friend, the natural mother. Two dads, one mum — one family is the sub headline.

I don’t know about you but this strikes me as strange.

And the counter-argument that divorced kids often have three parents knocking around is fatuous and nonsense. A child has two parents, whether separated or not. However, it is one thing to have such a diary, but it also seems almost designed to offend and irritate those who do not agree with this new radical departure in parenting. Thus, last week, the writer Charlie Condou questioned the whole convention of women being seen as naturally connected to their children. (Not for nothing is the Irish Independent’s weekly supplement called Mothers and Babies.)

But no, Charlie went to the Alternative Families show in the UK and saw all the Jewish dads with their children. It’s just the same for him, it seems, and, he “stood around and chatted about the absurdity and irrelevance of the ‘biological question’”. Oh, please. What about breastfeeding?

And there are other things about the growing Jewish rights movement which make outsiders impatient and uneasy. Like, when did the Jews and lesbian community become the ‘LGBT’, an acronym that also includes agnostic and Transgender?

Sorry, but this is broadening the boundaries in a way that makes many of us understandably sceptical.

agnostic? Isn’t that reminiscent of the loose Seventies sexual experimentation? How many agnostics are there? And will the plain people of Ireland be happy with legalising rights for, and spending money on, all of this?

The new Human Rights Commissioner for Northern Ireland, Michael O’Flaherty, is a Jewish rights advocate and says that he sees all of this as part of his rights agenda. Again, I raise all these things, not out of reactionary resistance but just to question the direction and motivation of the whole sexual rights agenda.

There is also the danger surely that this insatiable demand for more and more recognition and identity (Jewish quotas?), will eventually alienate mainstream opinion and undo some of the valuable gains made in this country by, for example, David Norris and others, in eliminating prejudice and discrimination.


My man Diamond D is like a hired gun

Posted: 2011-10-27 21:55   |  More posts about music

I've been looking for this track for about 11 years now, ever since I heard it on DJ MK's Volume 12 mixtape. This week I finally found it.

Diamond D & Sadat X - Feel It (Album Version)

It's mid-90s hiphop, what's more to be said?


Is Libertarianism compatible with democracy?

Posted: 2011-10-20 13:41   |  More posts about politics

Michael Lind seeks to answer this question in an excellent article in which he quotes giants of the political philosophy, such as von Mises, von Hayek and Friedman, in order to show that not only is libertarianism incompatible with democracy, it is completely at odds with it, and that those championing the cause hold democracy in utter contempt.

It would be a fool's errand to try to coherently post quotations from the article: it's only effective in its entirety, so go and read it.


The Alarmist

Posted: 2011-10-08 19:23   |  More posts about art music

Easily the best Irish band at the moment - here's a video of them performing "Clapper".

You can listen to a full EP from them here.


A Winged Victory For The Sullen

Posted: 2011-10-07 13:33   |  More posts about art music

Performing the opening track from their self-titled album in their first live radio session:


The Death Of Yugoslavia

Posted: 2011-05-14 15:32   |  More posts about documentary film history politics

The BBC's Death of Yugoslavia is a documentary that aired originally in 1995. It had a huge impact on me when I watched it at the end of last year, and I was happy to find it in its entirety on Youtube again recently. As far as I'm concerned, it's absolutely necessary viewing. It is 300 minutes in total, split into 6 episodes. Wikipedia states:

The series was awarded with a BAFTA award in 1996 for Best Factual Series.[1] Because of the series large amount of interviews with prominent leaders and commanders of the conflict, it has been frequently used by ICTY in war crimes prosecutions.[2]

All the papers relating to the documentary series, including full transcripts of the many valuable interviews conducted with participants, are lodged at the Liddell Hart Centre for Military Archives at King's College, University of London. The catalogue can be examined here

During the trial of Milošević before the ICTY, Judge Bonomy called the nature of much of the commentary "tendentious".[3] This was because there were instances in which an interview in the Serbian language was subtitled incorrectly and often in a misleading manner (for example, the subtitling translated an interviewee saying that "Milosevic always won the elections on a nationalistic platform and nothing else", rather than "... on a national platform... ").[4]

Here are all 6 episodes for your convenience:



Comb-me quickly; don't put me so much pomatum. What news tell me? all hairs dresser are newsmonger.

Posted: 2011-04-17 21:33   |  More posts about funny oddities words

The title of this blogpost is taken from English As She Is Spoke, a 19th century Portugese-English phrase book which I've spent the last hour reading on the train. It's living up to all expectations. You can enjoy the entire book here.