Saturday, January 03, 2009

Online Media Recommended: Downloads, Streams and Visitations

Preparing for the back to work of Monday after a pleasant but intense break (our apartment is not large and we have two small children). The world in the first days of 2009 seems to be going its same mad way as it was in 2008; I read last night that average life expectancy in Zimbabwe is now 39 years! The Middle East, where does one begin? With a song perhaps:

(The Fugs Wide Wide River (1966). The song was originally about the war in Vietnam...but it applies to so many situations of conflict)

And so on to the media I have stumbled upon in the past week. To begin with a summary of the best of 2008 from UBUWEB as recommended by some stars on KFMU, ohhh the greatness of UBUWEB:

UBUWEB :: Featured Resources 2008 (+ Jan '09)
As selected by James Hoff, Julian Cowley, Neville Wakefield, Gary Sullivan, Rick Moody, Ben Rubin, Zach Feue, Ron Silliman, Christian Bök, Laura Beiles, Seth Price, Stephanie Strickl and Alan Licht, Bettina Funcke and Alex Ross. It will take you a year to go through these, a treasure trove of sound and vision.

Listening to Famous Poets Reading Their Own Work
The internet has given poetry new scope and a new freshness. It’s almost like the ‘70s, when punk fanzine readers were famously told ‘Here are three chords, now form a band’. Today, the injunction could be: ‘Here are three web sites, now perform some poetry’.

No Neck Blues Band: Two New Tracks
The band holed up in their own Black Dirt Studios for only three days to crank out this thorny mix of twisted improv-psych but the result was an expansive record that bounces through the darkened corridors of human insanity. Moving from burdened, manic sexual ecstasy to unnerving calm with the precision that only a band of 15+ year veterans could pull off without sounding sloppy, the album elevates improvisational psychedelia to a new level. Feeling much like a sonic sculpture depicting the depths of madness, longing, perversion and lack of control in general; this is no mere collection of clattering chimes. The reverberated screams only serve to make the underlying languorous slide guitar sound more menacing.

Free Albums Galore :: Pixieguts – four albums
I was skeptical when I read the blurb on the blog:

Pixieguts is a bizarre name for someone with such a pretty and sensuous voice. The Australian vocalist specializes in cyber-collaborations with electronic artists throughout the world. The results are collected on three albums under her own name and a team effort album with Wales’ electronic sound artist Dementio13. All these albums explore various territories of trip-hop, drum & bass, IDM, trance, and pretty much anything else lurking in the electronic music scene. Pixieguts brings a lot of talent to these tracks but how she interacts these studio producers and remixers is the real treat

But then I listened to some of the collaborations with Demetio13 and these are really good. These pieces (like performance art with a great voice) have a strange quality that is difficult to describe; noise art meets cabaret trash in the chill out section of a rave somewhere in the Australian rainforest. I have since become a fan of Pixieguts and have discovered a video channel:

There is also a Pixieguts MySpace (of course)

Days of War Nights of Love
Are there ways of thinking, acting and living that might be more satisfying and exciting than the ways we think, act, and live today?
As someone who used (and still uses) this book, I wanted to make it easier for others to do the same if they didn't feel like paying, stealing or borrowing a copy. The greatest thing about this internet thing we have going is that it allows for a truly open exchange of information and ideas so I figured I'd take advantage while I'm still able.
A few notes on the book - there are no "copyright" issues on it, so everything here is "legal". Even if it wasn't, I'd still try to keep these digital versions up as long as I could. The ideas in it or I should say your power to learn to do something important from it are too great not to. No further words to you from a stranger are probably necessary... I'm not selling you shit! (refreshing, no?)

Mender Banah - Bab Rag Terra
Sitar tabla album. Nicely done. From Mexico and MySpace. Perfect for the ipod.

Martyn Wyndham-Read: Ned Kelly and That Gang (Trailer LER 2009) 1970
Martyn's first UK solo album featuring a selection of Convict/Bushranger ballads.
When I was a kid in Australia in the 1970s we would sometimes go on a Saturday night to the local Trades Hall for a bush dance. There men in rough linen shirts, jeans and riding boots who had long beards would dance with women with long hair parted in the middle with long cotton skirts and flowery blouses. A family me parents named all their kids after the members of the Kelly Gang and family: Ned, Dan, Kate and Joe. it is with this in mind I include this CD. The roaring days of Australia.

BBC Radiophonic Workshop - Music From The BBC Radiophonic Workshop (2003)
Following the broadcast of the documentary The BBC Radiophonic Workshop 1958-1998 which I have already blogged, I thought to follow it up with something that is on the web for a longer time (the doco has been removed). Here is a torrent of a 50 recordings from the workshop.

And that's all folks. More next week.

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