Saturday, July 29, 2006

On The Road scroll to be published

When Jack Kerouac (1922-69) wrote the original manuscript for what would become the novel On the Road in the Spring of 1951 he did it on a 36-meter, single-spaced typed scroll (pictured above) in three weeks. The original manuscript includes numerous penciled deletions and word changes, in some cases substituting fictional names for the real name of the author and his companions, Neal Cassady, Allen Ginsberg and William S. Burroughs. Such writing is very suggestive of the physical nature of writing with a computer; a continuous scroll that allows us to cut in and out of a line of thought, or to allow it to roll on and on.
Although Kerouac's famous "Belief & Technique for Modern Prose" stated that one should "Struggle to sketch the flow that already exists intact in mind" in writing, what came to be published as On the Road in 1957 had been altered so that "the original typescript had been cut by one-third and amended to approximate the text to literary, orthographic, and printing conventions."
Now the original scroll of On the Road is to be published. This is a part of a explosion of all things 'beat' going on at the moment.
Finally, something from "Essentials of Spontaneous Prose", by Jack Kerouac and a picture (I believe) taken in San Francisco in the late 1950's.

´"Essentials of Spontaneous Prose":

"No pause to think of proper word but the infantile pile up of scatological buildup words till satisfaction is gained, which will turn out to be a great appending rhythm to a thought and be in accordance with Great Law of Timing."

Monday, July 24, 2006

The Art of Psychogeographic War

Eyal Weizman recently published an essay on the adaption of the philosophies of Deleuze and Guattari by the Israeli military. He cited the 2002 battle of Nablus, as explained by an Israeli officer, being an example of 'inverse geometry'. Is the present conflict ranging across the Israeli-Lebanese border the latest instance of the Israeli army's effort in "the reorganization of the urban syntax by means of a series of micro-tactical actions".
With it looking likely that the warring factions are to be separated by an international force (either that or all out war in the Middle East), this latest conflict seems to fit with what Weizman describes as "fragmentation of the terrain into two systems that work across the vertical axis."
Weizman explains the relevance of Deleuze and Guattari in relation to;
"the concepts of 'smooth' and 'striated' space [which accordingly reflect] the organizational concepts of the 'war machine' and the 'state apparatus'. In the IDF we now often use the term 'to smooth out space' when we want to refer to operation in a space as if it had no borders. Palestinian areas could indeed be thought of as 'striated' in the sense that they are enclosed by fences, walls, ditches, roads blocks and so on. When I asked him if moving through walls was part of it, he explained that, 'In Nablus the IDF understood urban fighting as a spatial problem. [...] Travelling through walls is a simple mechanical solution that connects theory and practice."
Lets hope that this "smoothing out of space" finishes soon.
In a related psychogeographic and Deleuze and Guattari area, an engaging new essay by Brian Massumi has been posted on the web:
URBAN APPOINTMENT A Possible Rendez-Vous With the City (PDF 295KB)

Wednesday, July 19, 2006

Malware, Business and the Lure of Myspace

From the Sydney Morning Herald another take on the dangers (and business) of social software:

The popular MySpace social networking site is increasingly being populated by malware embedded in fake personal profiles, according to security company MessageLabs.

Once a fake profile has been created, the embedded malware can then be circulated through "friends" lists which have proven popular ways to share music and other media content as well as a means for members to search for others who share their interests. However such lists can now be automatically generated by "bots" who wish to target specific groups on the social network.

Paul Wood, senior analyst at MessageLabs, said: "One problem arises when unscrupulous people create fake profiles, typically of very attractive young girls, with some pictures uploaded. For authenticity, they will often scrape some personal description including likes and dislikes from another genuine profile."

Of course MessageLabs has the solution:
"More than 13,000 businesses around the world, with 5 million users, look to MessageLabs for anti-virus, anti-spam, anti-spyware protection."
A good program that comes for free is Adaware.

Monday, July 17, 2006

Shelley Poem Speaks Again

Millions to fight compell'd, to fight or die
In mangled heaps on War's red altar lie . . .
When legal murders swell the lists of pride;
When glory's views the titled idiot guide.
It is the "cold advisers of yet colder kings" who have "the power to breathe / O’er all the world the infectious blast of death".


Man must assert his native rights, must say
We take from Monarchs' hand the granted sway;
Oppressive law no more shall power retain,
Peace, love, and concord, once shall rule again,
And heal the anguish of a suffering world;
Then, then shall things which now
confusedly hurled,
Seem Chaos, be resolved to order's sway,
And error's night be turned to virtue’s day -

P B Shelley Poetical Essay (1807)
(A rediscovered Pamphlet lost for 200 years)

Sunday, July 16, 2006

Ten Canoes and Aboriginal Film

Rolf De Heer (The Tracker, Bad Boy Bubby) and David Gulpilil (The Tracker, Storm Boy, Walkabout...more films than I have space for here) co-directed the first full-length feature film made in Australia entirely in an Aboriginal language – the Ganalbingu - and its cast are all people indigenous to the Arafura wetlands area, in particular Ramingining, in Arnhem Land. "Ten Canoes" won the special jury prize at Cannes this year.
The last few years have seen a blossoming of film concerning (although not necessarily made by) indigenous Australians with Rabbit Proof Fence, The Tracker, Serenades, Yolgnu Boy, One Night the Moon, Beneath Clouds, Black Chicks Talking, Fly Peewee Fly, Deadly Yarns, Confessions of a Headhunter, Australian Rules and many more. Some young Aboriginal film makers, who do not necessarily depict Aboriginal subjects include Tracey Moffatt, Rachel Perkins, Ivan Sen and Catriona McKenzie.
The success of Ten Canoes and other films being made depicting Aboriginal history, culture and society is a good way for stories to be exchanged and understanding encouraged. Here is an interview with Rolf De Heer, Richard Birrinbirrin and Frances Djulbing.

Friday, July 14, 2006

No Bravery: A nation blind to their disgrace

I wrote this a week or two ago for a news site based in Australia but with what has been happening in Iraq in the last few days I thought I would put it up here:

No Bravery: A Nation Blind to their Disgrace

Like the muffled screams of a man in quicksand hoping that the bottom is not too far down, the bloody news continues to seep out from Iraq. As Japan announces it is withdrawing from Iraq and Britain debates it, the Australian Prime Minister says he is not a hostage when it comes to Iraq:
“Mr. Howard said Australia would not be hostage to a particular timetable for withdrawal from Iraq. 'We will only leave when the job is finished,' he said.
"Troops face combat in new Iraq role: PM", Sydney Morning Herald 2006/06/22
What job is he talking about? Former regional governor in Iraq, Rory Stewart gives us some idea of the direction “the job” began taking very early after the "liberation" of Iraq:
”We hoped we had created the opportunity for progressive groups to organise and govern. Then we left and the dream collapsed - in two elections the Islamists, the Sadrists, Da'wa and the Iranian-linked parties took almost all the seats provincially and nationally. The rural sheikhs, the "liberal" middle classes and the religious minorities mostly vanished from the government. The new state was reactionary, violent, intolerant towards women and religious minorities, and uncooperative with the coalition.”
Rory Stewart, The Guardian“Occupational Hazards: My Time Governing In Iraq”
This violent chaos which accompanies “the job” is not helped by the “Private Security Firms” [read mercenaries] being used to assist trade negotiations in the country. Of course it does happen occasionally that shooting is involved in trade negotiations, someone is killed and “the deal” may actually be threatened:
“A $90 million wheat deal with Iraq may be in doubt after Australian troops in Baghdad shot dead the Iraqi trade minister's security guard, believing they were under attack from insurgents.” Shooting Threatens Trade DealSydney Morning Herald 2006/06/22
The trade opportunities and the wealth that remains in Iraq seem to play an important role in “the job”. But how is this contributing to a possible end to violence. But even the United States government is doubtful:
“Secretary of Defense Donald H. Rumsfeld said on Sunday that it might take as long as 12 years to quell the insurgency. He said Iraq's security forces will have to finish the job because American and foreign troops will have left the country by then. As his defence chief predicted the insurgency could last for years, President George W. Bush was preparing a major address on the Iraq war.”.Iraqi PM: Security in two years
To gain some idea of the feelings held by the occupying forces why not listen to “Hadji Girl”, a hit with the marines when it was .”.performed in this video
Here is a taste of the sentiment involved:
“I grabbed her little sister and put her in front of me. As the bullets began to fly, the blood sprayed from between her eyes, and then I laughed maniacally . . .I blew those little f**kers to eternity . . .They should have known they were f**king with the Marines".”
It looks like things can only get worse in Iraq, hence the announcement of the expanded combat role for Australian troops. Of course by this stage withdrawing from the fractured collection of tribal and regional loyalties posing as a country and struggling with a long history of colonialism would probably ensure a dramatic escalation in violence.
This only makes the recent statements by the Australian Prime Minister seem all the more foolish. "The job" may take a generation while Iraq is being occupied and a civil war will ensue if the troops leave. As a final statement on the war in Iraq, there is James Blunt’s “No Bravery”, based on his experiences as a soldier in Kosovo. Here it seems so apt for the slaughter that is going on daily in Iraq.
Finally to see some of the non-censored horror of this war there is the online film Iraq: The Hidden Story. Not something for the squeamish.

A New Look. Looking New.

Welcome to a new face. Summer break is when I have time to renovate and reorganize. I have as well be creating new meta-categories for my links. The taxonomy of my links is an ongoing activity. It provokes much thought as to what it is I do and what I am interested in. Organizing ones links is a sort of reflective act, looking over the themes and directions and assessing the summaries made as links are gathered under headings.

Wednesday, July 12, 2006

Syd Barrett Dead

Syd Barrett, founding member of Pink Floyd died last Friday. He was 60 years old and had not been a public figure for many years. The image to the left is from the late 1960's.
I first heard Pink Floyd's "Piper at the Gates of Dawn" in 1987 (20 years after it had been released) and it had a major impact on me. After this I learnt who had written most of the songs on it. I then bought the three solo albums he did and listened to them many times up to the mid-1990's when I started to move on in music. Although I rarely listen to Syd Barrett's music today, without him I would not be the person I am today.
Some of the genius of Pink Floyd with Syd at the helm can be recognized from this 1967 TV broadcast, Look of the Week. A mixture of psychedelic sound (fuzz, drone, delay) a Romantic poetic and children's fairy tales and stories (especially the Wind in the Willows) combined with Syd's original composition style to produce some of the most influential popular music of the 20th century. Here are the lyrics to 'Golden Hair' (1969), one of Syd's most beautiful songs, adapted from a James Joyce poem:

Lean out your window, golden hair
I heard you singing in the midnight air
my book is closed, I read no more
watching the fire dance, on the floor
I've left my book, I've left my room

For I heard you singing through the gloom
singing and singing, a merry air
lean out the window, golden hair

Deep Water Acres

In an interview article on the music website Deep Water Acres the fearless leader (and warp brother of fractal space) Michael D. speaks of the musical collective Music Your Mind Will Love You and I get a mention or two.....a great story all round:

Kyogle Dreaming: An Interview with Musicyourmindwillloveyou's Michael Donnelly

Thursday, July 06, 2006

dada and moma

Georges Ribemont-Dessaignes. (French, 1884-1974). Silence. c. 1915. Oil on canvas, 36 1/4 x 28 7/8" (92.1 x 73.3 cm). Katherine S. Dreier Bequest

Take a newspaper.
Take some scissors.
Choose from this paper an article of the length you want to make your poem.
Cut out the article.
Next carefully cut out each of the words that makes up this article and put them all in a bag.
Shake gently.
Next take out each cutting one after the other.
Copy conscientiously in the order in which they left the bag.
The poem will resemble you.
And there you are—an infinitely original author of charming sensibility, even though unappreciated by the vulgar herd.
—Tristan Tzara, 1920

Dada at the Moma (moma and dada......cute hey).

Wednesday, July 05, 2006

Flickr grab

A nice way to search images on Flickr is Flickr Grab. the above selection is the first 200 odd in a collection of 40 000 that returned on the keyword 'India'. What fun!

Review Translation

A friend sent me a link to a review of a disc we played on together. The review is in Norwegian so he asked if I may be able to help with a translation. With a lot of help from Erika I managed to get somethng down that may convey some of the orginal. Here it is in English:

Ugh! In Mara’s Glove is 40 minutes in delirious ecstasy from the Australian wilderness captured in a spontaneous fellowship between a garden hose, a necromancer and an ancient Mayan emperor. Here they have packed an assortment of psychedelic goodies in their sack, tied a didgeridoo on the lid and left the village to seek the sun god in a place in the outback as oracles and beyond contact with the outside world.

6majik9 (or Majik as they also call themselves) comprise members of, among others, Terracid and the Brothers of the Occult Sisterhood, but let me say this only once; In Mara’s Glove is one of the best I have heard from this perimeter. The family lineage to this bastard band is clearly audible, but Michael Donnelly & Co has on this occasion struck a sensible balance between the mystical and the mythological that is currently so popular and hypnotizes so many, more cast in the cosmic house, between invocations of nature gods and giving honour to primitive ecstatic dance. There is nothing wrong with abstract nature based music – not on the whole, actually, but I am especially weak when tribal rhythms are used to a certain degree. In a clear sense here 6majik9 reminds me more of Sunburned Hand of the Man and the No-Neck Blues Band in the way they usually feature hand drums or other rhythm instruments than they do with their other bands. Take for example the didgeridoo-standard pulse on “Solar Kernel Seals” which lies behind the always living, organic myriad of layers that’s builds, brakes and develops here.

The disc is a re-release from Foxglove which said it best with; "Space shanty rhythms collide with tribal folk dirges to create true cosmic wreckage... welcome to fucking oz."

In Mara’s Glove is a very limited release so hopefully this short description can awaken temptation, for you have to know your appointment. The sun also rises in that wilderness.
- Bjørn Hammershaug, 08.11.2005

Monday, July 03, 2006

Summer with Bill

Although summer is the time to be out in the sunshine and so on, you could do worse than spend some time watching the amazing collection of films that are being amassed for download on UBUWEB. I draw special attention to the complete collection of the cut-up films of Balch-Burroughs-Gysin:

William Buys a Parrot
Bill and Tony
Towers Open Fire
Ghost at No.9 (Paris)
The Cut-Ups

These are early examples of remixed media that is today being debated, dammed and praised in such contexts as The Influences "the live talk show you won't see on TV!" in July at the Center of Contemporary Culture Barcelona Vuk Cosic, Paul D. Miller/ DJ Spooky, Molleindustria, Irwin/ Neue Slovenische Kunst, Vencenzo Sparanga, Oscar Brahim, and Chicks on Speed)- free entrance!!!!!