Thursday, February 22, 2024

Double Life - Indifferent Stars

Nick Vance from the excellent Cinematic Void Podcast has a debut EP out with Double Life. Indifferent Stars is a GORGEOUS slice of 90s-style sonic emotional rock, reminiscent of early Sugar, Embrace, and maybe even a little Sonic Youth. Click the Bandcamp widget above (or click HERE) to go support these guys and help let 'em know we need a full-length like now. Listening to this makes me feel SO fucking good!!!


Boy Kills World has been on the very outskirts of my awareness for a while now. I've come to really like Bill Skarsgård, so that's a plus. On the opposite end of that is an easy association my brain plays with linking the title of the film to those "Deadpool Kills the Marvel Universe" books, which I kind of roll my eyes at. So I didn't really think I'd care.


I stopped the trailer and put this on the "need to see list" when I heard the line about a televised execution... by breakfast cereal mascots??? Still not entirely sure this will be for me, but that definitely made me interested enough to go see it on or around when it hits theatres on April 26.


Metallica - 72 Seasons
The Mysterines - Reeling
Grinderman - Eponymous
Grinderman - Grinderman 2
Godspeed You! Black Emperor - F# A# ∞
The Caretaker - Stairway to the Stars
Chelsea Wolfe - She Reaches Out to She Reaches Out to She
Jim Williams - Possessor OST


From Jonathan Grimm's Hand of Doom Tarot, which you can buy HERE.

• Six of Cups
• Queen of Pentacles
• King of Wands

I feel like this is the most non-specific spread I've had with the Hand of Doom deck. That's not a knock in any direction on the cards - Jonathan Grimm's Heavy Metal/Acid Fantasy/Stoner illustrations bring great joy to my life, doubly so as the readings are the least ambiguous of any deck I've worked with. Here, we seem to have an indication that Emotional Balance comes with a passionate reclamation of the tactile. The King of Wands - or the "Air" of "Fire" suggests tempering the Will with the Intellect, always the best case scenario, will play a part in achieving this.

I don't really know what the hell this means, but I'll be mulling it over throughout the day.

Wednesday, February 21, 2024

New Music From The Mysterines!!!


Man, somehow I KNEW this was coming. I hadn't read anything about The Mysterines in a while, but I got the idea of a new album on the horizon in my head a week or two ago and have been checking that told me we were due. Out June 7th, you can pre-order Afraid of Tomorrow HERE.


Pretty hefty NCBD this week. Let's get right into it:

I can't tell you how much I've been looking forward to Cobra Commander issue #2! Joshua Williamson and Robert Kirkman are taking a very different approach with the Joes in this whole Energon Universe take, and they've got me interested in a considerably more SciFi version of this franchise. I welcome it!

Still hanging in on the latest iteration of Larry Hama's GIJOE: A Real American Hero. 

LOVED the first episode of this new Hellblazer series, let's hope that continues. I'm equally intrigued by and a bit concerned about seeing Swamp Thing show up already in the second issue. I feel like John and Alec have become a bit too codependent in recent years; just because we have one, doesn't mean we need the other. Still, I'm here for it, and look at that awesome cover!!!

No lie - going to have to reread the first issue of this "Ten years in the future" Rise of the Powers of X series before I dive into this. Whereas Fall of the House of X stuck, this did not. 

The penultimate issue of Tenement. The previous issue blew my mind and I'm thinking Lemire and Sorrentino aren't done with the surprises yet. 

Unnatural Order has proved to be a fantastic time-travel story thus far. There's an epic element to this one that promises big things. 

What bizarre hijinx will Ash, Evil Ash and Sheila get up to in this issue? I'm really digging writer Tony Fleec's use of futuristic, robotic "Deadites"

Finally, tying directly into The One Hand series that launched this Neo-Noir universe, we have the first issue of Dan Watters and Sumit Kumar's The Six Fingers hitting shelves today. You can read how much I loved The One Hand and this concept in general HERE


Chock this up to the "Better late than never" category, but I just bought tickets to see Christoper Nolan's TENET on the big screen. IMax, no less.

I never saw TENET due to, well, COVID and not being able to see the film the way Christopher Nolan proclaimed it was made to be seen - on the biggest screen possible. But I waited patiently, avoiding the urge to watch this on HOBOMAX or Prime or where I saw the thumbnail, maintaining my aversion to the idea that my first viewing would be on a little screen. My patience has paid off! We have to drive to Nashville on Saturday for this one, but I have no doubt it will be worth it.


Justin Hamline - The House With Dead Leaves
IDLES - Joy As An Act Of Rebellion
IDLES - Tangk
Tar - Clincher
Matt Cameron - Gory Scorch Cretins
The Damned - Evil Spirits
Drug Church - Hygiene
Ganser - Odd Talk
Metallica - 72 Seasons
Chelsea Wolfe - She Reaches Out to She Reaches Out to She
Frank Sinatra - In the Wee Small Hours

Tuesday, February 20, 2024

New Music From High On Fire!!!


The first harbinger for High on Fire's upcoming album Cometh the Storm has landed, and as one would expect, it's the sonic equivalent of having Matt Pike kick you in the skull! The album is out April 19th, pre-order HERE.

This is the first High on Fire album in six years and I'm pretty damn excited. I've followed these guys since Man's Ruin (RIP) released The Art of Self Defense in 2000, and I'd grown rather used to looking to a new album every 2-3 years*, so I'm more than ready for a new full-length. 


* Granted, Pike Vs. the Automaton came out two years ago, so it's not like I've been going through a total detox. 


I feel like I've been waiting on a release announcement for Larry Fessenden's Blackout for a year now, so imagine my surprise and excitement this morning when I found that a trailer had dropped!

Despite my recent aversion to trailers (they ruin movies), I did allow myself to watch this one. Probably mostly because I doubt I'll see this in the cinema before any movies, so I'll be able to control only seeing it the onc time. And, as with all of Fessenden's films, my anticipation for this one is already sky-high already! Some of what I'm reading shows this getting a slightly wider-than-usual theatrical release, so I'm crossing my fingers we get it here in Clarksville or, at the very least, in Chicago. I'd totally drive seven hours to see a Larry Fessenden film on the big screen.


Jim Williams - Possessor OST
Emilie Levienaise-Farrouch - Censor OST
High on Fire - Burning Down (single)
Emma Ruth Rundle & Thou - May Our Chambers Be Full
Mannequin Pussy - I Got Heaven (pre-release singles)
Justin Hamline - The House With Dead Leaves
Various - Return of the Living Dead Soundtrack
Idles - Tangk
Idles - Joy As An Act of Rebellion
Zeal & Ardor - Eponymous
Yawning Balch - Volume One & Two
The Police - Synchronicity
Dean Hurley - Tales From the Library of the Occult Present: Flower


From Jonathan Grimm's Hand of Doom Tarot, which you can buy HERE.

• Five of Swords
• IX: The Hermit
• Two of Pentacles

Five of Swords is a tricky place to start. There's an interpretation that Fives cast a Pall over other cards in the reading, as they can be seen as indicating conflict or struggle. Struggle is not necessarily a bad thing, though. So we're starting at a struggle, and moving into The Hermit, which usually bespeaks re-grouping or gestation. Finally, the Two of Pentacles can suggest both collaboration and opposition. Now, it would be tempting to take that "Pall" of the Five of Swords (especially because it's Swords) and read this entire Pull as negative or conflictory, however, from the Grimoire:

"Two's - Chokmah on the Sepheritoic Tree of Life - actually represents the number one, as they are the first physical manifestation of the elements, still harmonious and untainted by anything material. I'd look at this, then, as a forthcoming struggle of intellect that will require a period of deliberation (gestation) and a new idea/approach, untainted by previous lust of result.

That's a considerably more in-depth interpretation than I've done in a while. Not sure if I'm just looking for a cheerier answer than "conflict!" or if the motivation to go below a surface reading is stronger today. Either way, this applies pretty directly to what I'm currently working on, so I'll take it. 

*The only Sephiroth/Trump higher being Kether, which is, in Grant Morrison speak, the intangible "White Hot Room."

Friday, February 16, 2024

Justin Hamline's The House With Dead Leaves Out Today!!!

Out today! Justin Hamline's cinematic score for a Giallo that only exists in his head, The House With Dead Leaves!!! Justin was gracious enough to allow me access to this ahead of release, and I can tell you that this is a lush, imaginative masterpiece that instantly became a daily listen. Fantastic mood-setter for the YA Giallo Novel I'm currently writing!

I've mentioned here previously that I am kind of predisposed to appreciate scores for films that don't exist due to a long-standing love of all things Barry Adamson. When I finish writing a book and prep it for release, I try to put a playlist in the back as an accompanying feature, but what I haven't managed to make good on yet is the half-finished scores I have sitting on an old hard drive. I made a conscious decision in 2015 to focus almost solely on writing, so for nearly ten years, all of my musical 'urges' get trasnmuted into writing fuel. These cinematic emanations aren't exactly for films that don't exist, they're just for stories that don't tangibly exist yet, which I'm betting is how Justin would describe The House with Dead Leaves as well. I've long wanted to release a score and a novel simultaneously, and reveling in the sonic joys of Justin's accomplishment has put that back in mind (though something like that probably won't be happening any time soon). 

The takeaway here is that with the imagery Justin's been peppering his social media accounts with to accompany this album, I feel I can almost see his movie, as though the horrific events the music buoys are playing out nearby, on the other side of a thick wall of fog. Doesn't that sound almost exactly like something from a Giallo film?

Well played, sir. Well played.


Finally! Evil Season 4 announced as arriving in May! This is one of the most low-key fantastic Horror shows ever made, in my opinion, and I couldn't be happier that it's finally coming back with the long-awaited Fourth - and final - season!

Regarding the cancellation, I was under the impression - perhaps erroneously - that this season was meant to be the last regardless. Either way, Paramount ordering an extra four episodes to help wrap everything up definitely helps. Can't wait.


The Veils - Total Depravity
Type O Negative - Bloody Kisses (digipak)
Justin Hamline - The House With Dead Leaves
Matt Cameron - Gory Scorch Cretins
Fabula - Lost in Stars
Witchfinder - Hazy Rites
Ween - Chocolate and Cheese
The Jesus and Mary Chain - Darklands
Jim Williams - Possessor OST
Blut Aus Nord - Memoria Vetusta II: A Dialogue with the Stars
Fvunerals - Let the Earth Be Silent
Chelsea Wolfe - She Reaches Out to She Reaches Out to She
Nobuhiko Morino - Versus OST


From Jonathan Grimm's Hand of Doom Tarot, which you can buy HERE.

• King of Pentacles - Earthly Intellect
• Eight of Swords - Transformation of relationship (status quo)
• Nine of Pentacles - Earthly accomplishment

Lots of Earthly concerns represented in the cards this morning. That makes sense - money was a free-floating variable for a few days as I scrambled to get my taxes done and a few unexpected trips to the Emergency Room/Urgent Care piled up over the course of last weekend (everyone is fine). Having the Eight of Swords bisect the two nods to Malkuth looks to me as an indication that a deep-seated perspective on Earthly concerns (again, money) is about to change. What's that mean, exactly? Well, I'm hot and cold with spending, and I think it's a good time to go cold again and amass larger savings. That's a goal K and I have discussed recently (we even began calls with a free money-manager person through her work), a week ago today, actually, so this Pull makes sense in terms of a reminder to 'stay on the path.'

Wednesday, February 14, 2024

Jim Williams - Possessor

I can feel a viewing of Brandon Cronenberg's Possessor on the horizon. I've become quite entranced by the score, which I'd always enjoyed in the context of the film but hadn't completely warmed to as a stand-alone listen. That ended yesterday, when I played the album - and this track in particular - over several times. 


It's New Comic Book Day! Here are my picks:

The final issue. I still haven't been able to physically acquire issue three, although Mike Shin has a copy for me at Amazing Fantasy in Frankfort. Since I never subbed Syzmon Kurdanski's Blood Commandment at Rick's, it's a toss-up whether or not I actually bring issue four home today. If not, I'll call Mike. 

Not going to lie; I cannot wait to read this issue just based on the cover alone. Something about the image of Lorna Dane in her father's armor just feels like, yeah, something I've always wanted but never put into words or even coherent thought.

James Tynion IV and Josh Hixon's The Deviant continues to spiral deeper into a psycho-social mystery that, although we already know who (or what) the killer is, carries a 

I still can't believe we're three issues from the end. Damn. Looking around online, I've yet to see any concrete information as far as whether the new Jason Aaron series will continue the continuity built up over 150 glorious issues of this series or if it will just restart everything. Hoping for the former, afraid for the latter. 

The cover says it all. I never thought I'd see Optimus Prime wearing Megatron's Canon arm, but then, between everything we've seen in the pages of Daniel Warren Johnson's Transformers and Joshua Williamson's Cobra Commander, I guess I should now just be prepared for a lot of surprises when it comes to these two long-time properties.


I showed K Destroy All Neighbors yesterday. She loved it. So did I; totally holds up upon second viewing.


The vocoder hostage negotiation scene is one of the funniest things I've seen in recent years. Directed by Josh Forbes and written by Charles A. Pieper, along with Jared Logan and Mike Benner, this one really arrived at the right time for me. Horror-comedy is a favorite when it's done right, and this does it exactly right. There are so many '90s Oddball vibes in here. Then, of course, factor in Gabriel Bartalos, and you have a straight-up win all around. The prosthetics on Alex Winter are INSANE, and he does an outstanding job acting through them. In fact, there's a fantastic article in the latest Fangoria about this that really peeled back the curtain on some of the production (though not too much to eclipse the overall film). 


Jim Williams - Possessor OST
Blut Aus Nord - Memoria Vetusta II: A Dialogue with the Stars
Genghis Tron - Dream Weapon
Emma Ruth Rundle & Thou - May Our Chambers Be Full
Dream Division - Beyond the Mirror's Image
Tears for the Dying - Memories
Justin Hamline - The House with Dead Leaves
Psychetect - Extremism
Morphine - The Night


From Jonathan Grimm's Hand of Doom Tarot, which you can buy HERE.

• 0: The Fool
• Eight of Cups
• XIII: Death

A journey starts and almost immediately fails and ends. Rapid prototyping? I have to think about this one for a bit, as depending on how I choose to interpret it, this may be advice on opting out of a project I was planning on releasing soon. I don't feel like said project 'failed,' although I did think it would be done by now. That said, I took a huge jump forward with it, then relaxed because, honestly, I have really lost the thread with Writing since December. I just didn't get very much done in January while I was in L.A., and it's only yesterday that I began actively carving out a workspace for it. 

Tuesday, February 13, 2024

Tears for the Dying - Lost Girls

I found Tears for the Dying last night watching Alice Maio Mackay's Bad Girl Boogey, which just hit Shudder. This track grabbed me the moment it began to play onscreen, and it was just with quite a gusto I made my way over to Apple Music and downloaded the entire album, which I have yet to play, but am looking forward to this morning.


As stated above, I threw on Alice Maio Mackay's Bad Girl Boogey last night and was instantly blown away. This film has such a DIY feel, but also, it feels so much like a Video Nasty from back in the 80s. 

The opening setup and kills, which take place over the course of many "Halloweens" and involve different groups of people are brutal and stem from a creepy, blue-collar Occult underground that just works for me in so many ways.


Stereophonics - Just Enough Education to Perform
The Veils - ... And Out of the Void
Cake - Fashion Nugget
Cake - Motorcade of Generosity
Bohren & der Club of Gore - Sunset Mission
Jim Williams - Possessor OST
Fever Ray - Radical Romantics


From Jonathan Grimm's Hand of Doom Tarot, which you can buy HERE.

• 0: The Fool
• VIII: Strength
• Seven of Cups

The journey here is one of Strength, or rekindling it. Victory is assured, or at least likely, but the first steps have to be taken. I'm afraid this pain in my knees is not going to go away; that would suck. I feel an apathy toward myself has crept in around the edges of my life; I'm so focused on the things I focus on (the elements of the world that tend to populate these pages), that it's difficult to muster the reserves to focus on myself. Because, of course, "something always comes along to save the Simpson children." Only, that's not true, is it? Just because I'm sitting here typing, healthy now, doesn't mean I will be in a year, a month or even a day. 

Monday, February 12, 2024

Chelsea Wolfe - The Liminal


My copy of Chelsea Wolfe's She Reaches Out to She Reaches Out to She arrived on Saturday and I managed to hold off listening to it until the precise criteria I insisted upon were met - Saturday night after recording the latest episode of The Horror Vision Presents: Murderboad - A True Detective Night Country Discussion, I placed the beautiful colored vinyl on the turntable in my office, smoked a quarter of a joint and laid out on the floor and let the sounds wash over me. This one's an immediate shoo-in for my top ten list this year. It's both similar and completely unlike anything Ms. Wolfe has done previously; similar, because her voice is unmistakable; different in that there are a lot of what I can only call "Industrial Trip-Hop" elements in these songs. 

I know, I know... it's not bad enough we subdivide music into oft-confusing subgenres, but now you're creating hybrids of those subgenres? Well... there's just no other way to say it. 

Industrial is appropriate because alot of the songs have a mechanical feeling to their percussion or groove, Trip Hop because the closest thing I can compare of the arranging on this album to is Portishead or Massive Attack. I can split hairs all day long on the sound, but believe me, this is a spectacular piece of work from one of the most interesting artists working in music.


I had the revelatory experience of watching Jennifer Reeder's 2019 Knives and Skin on Saturday night. Here's a trailer that I have vetted; it gives nothing away (also doesn't do this film any kind of justice, but you really can't encapsulate Knives and Skin in a trailer anymore than you can a Lynch film):

Ms. Reeder has been slowly moving up my radar ever since I watched 2020's Night's End hit Shudder back in the fall of 2022. I posted about her most recent film Perpetrator a few weeks ago, and that viewing, combined with this latest one, seals the deal: she's easily my latest "favorite directors." There's a moment in this trailer where the pull quote says, "Twin Peaks meets Donnie Darko." That's not exactly right, but it's not exactly wrong, either, and it's close enough to tell you why I like it so much and whether or not you have any hope of connecting with it. All I can say is K and I were absolutely mesmerized while watching.


Matt Cameron - Gory Scorch Cretins
David Bowie - Black Star
David Bowie - The Next Day
David Bowie - Outside
David Bowie - Aladdin Sane
Turnstile - Glow On
Frankie and the Witch Fingers - Data Doom
Various - Learn to Relax: A Tribute to Jehu
Grace Jones - Warm Leatherette (single)
Daemien Frost - Corpus Demo
Donny Benét - Konichiwa (single)
Chelsea Wolfe - She Reaches Out to She Reaches Out to She
The Veils - Total Depravity


From Jonathan Grimm's Hand of Doom Tarot, which you can buy HERE.

• VIII: Strength
• Four of Pentacles
• Knight of Wands

A lot of strength and foundation, which I feel like has been under assault in our house the last few days. Took K to the emergency room on Thursday night around midnight (she's fine), took our cat Sweetie to the pet urgent care on Saturday (we think she's fine), and something popped in my right knee that has left me in intermittent crippling pain since Saturday morning. All this, juxtaposed with this Pull, tells me we need to finally ante up and put our health back into the actively attending to column.