Tuesday, April 23, 2024

New Music From Zeal & Ardor!!!


New full-length GREIF is out August 23rd. No pre-order yet, but I'll be watching like the proverbial hawk.




Watch:

This past Sunday, K and I met my parents at the local theatre to see Guy Ritchie's newest film, The Ministry of Ungentlemanly Warfare. Here's the standard trailer; it doesn't show too much:

 

Another super solid, big-budget action flick by Mr. Ritchie. This type of flick isn't usually my bag, however, I've maintained since the advent of the Pirates of the Caribbean films that there's room in my life for the occasional big-budget, studio action film if they sate certain personal affectations of mine. I couldn't specifically explain that other than to say, "I know it when I see it." Guy Ritchie almost always fits like a glove. I suspect that has  A LOT to do with my love of his seminal film Snatch - one of my all-time favorite flicks, and I'm fine with that bias. 




Playlist:

Doobie Bros. - South City Midnight Lady (single)
Judas Priest - Invincible Shield
Zombi - Direct Inject
The Devil's Blood - The Thousandfold Epicentre
The Damned - Night of the Living Damned
The Ocean - Heliocentric
The Ocean - Anthropocentric
Ike Reilly - Poison the Hit Parade
Zeal & Ardor - GREIF (pre-release single)




Monday, April 22, 2024

Danzig - Blood and Tears

 

I'm not going to say where I unexpectedly heard this song married to Horrific imagery recently, but man was it effective! Danzig's first four albums stand apart from everything else he's done; as much as I like some of the records that came after Chuck Biscuits, Eerie Von and John Christ left the band and Rick Rubin stopped co-producing, there's just something so perfect about the heavy blues influence on those first four. Of those, Danzig II: Lucifuge will always be my favorite. I'll never forget the first time I saw a friend's older brother wearing a Lucifuge shirt - I didn't know what it was and it kind of scared me in that 80s/early 90s way of, "What the hell is this guy into?" 

That's probably around the time the album came out in 1990 and I would have been sixteen. Before the internet, and not so far removed from all the weird fears being a small child during the Satanic Panic instilled in me for a short time. There was a certain... haunted feeling to that era. Everything from the tv news to paperback books to Inside Edition (remember that pile of sh*t?) told you there were secret societies of Satan Worshippers in every neighborhood, just waiting to sacrifice any unlucky folks they happened to target to their dark lord. I actually pine for that feeling now, but not in the way so many do by rejecting everything known in favor of their opinions, fears and fantasies, and empirical data doesn't mean anything to our society as a whole anymore. Anyway, I cracked Lucifuge out and listened to it over the weekend and it doesn't disappoint.
 


Watch:

This trailer for the new film Pandemonium popped up in my youtube feed two days ago. I have no pre-existing knowledge of this one, or anyone involved in making it, but I'm definitely intrigued. Here's the trailer I half-watched:


Also, wanted to point out that, thanks to Warren Ellis's newsletter Orbital Operations, I've found the first watchable version of Andrej Żuławski's On the Silver Globe on youtube I've encountered. 


I've seen mention for a few years about this popping up for years, but whenever I go looking for it - an irregular occurrence for sure, but one I do periodically undertake, I find ones with awful pictures. Not this, which you can see HERE. I haven't sit down to watch this yet, but it's in the cards for the next few days. 

Thanks to Heavenisanincubator for putting this one on my radar to begin with.




Read:

I am about a third of the way through Ivy Tholen's Tastes Like Candy 2: Sugarless and I am here to tell you, it's fantastic!


Full disclosure: We recently invited Ms. Tholen to be a guest on The Horror Vision to discuss her novels, and she not only accepted but also sent us digital advance reader copies. That's a moot point, though, because I'd been waiting for this one regardless. If you read the first, this is a great continuation. If you haven't read the first and you love Slasher Flicks, THIS is for you. 




Playlist:

Black Sabbath - Master of Reality
Black Sabbath - Technical Ecstasy
Moon Wizard - Sires
The Veils - ...And Out of the Void Came Love
The Damned - Night of the Living Damned (Thank You, Mr. Brown!)
High on Fire - Cometh the Storm
Melvins - Tarantula Heart
Ike Reilly - Poison the Hit Parade
Mike Doughty - Live From Ken's House
Danzig - Danzig II: Lucifuge
Ministry - Hopiumforthemasses
Witchfinder - Hazy Rites
Man Man - On Oni Pond
Ozzy Osbourne - Blizzard of Oz
Led Zeppelin - In Through the Out Door
Jimmy Buffet - Good Luck




Card:

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


• Ace of Cups
• X: Wheel of Fortune
• III: The Empress

A bird' s-eye view of this (all I have time for at the moment) is quite soothing to a massive stress bomb that has gone off in my life. Ace of Cups is the card that anchors this to a positive interpretation, something I really needed at the moment. Emotional Breakthrough, "Karma" and Fertility, in an abbreviated three-card reading. 

Wednesday, April 17, 2024

Second Song Second Time Around

 

Yesterday, I began my day with some TV on the Radio. Man, I miss these guys. Technically, I don't think they ever actually broke up; however, their most recent record, Seeds, came out a decade ago now, and their hiatus has lasted just about as long. 

Mr. Brown recently pointed out that the new Chelsea Wolfe album I've been spinning so much was produced by TVOTR's Dave Sitek, so maybe that's why I've been thinking of them lately. 

Interestingly enough, Sitek also produced Scarlett Johansson's 2008 album of Tom Waits' covers, Anywhere I Lay My Head. I remember having an advance copy of that back when it came out, but I don't remember a single thing about what the record actually sounds like.


Watch:

Kimo Stamboel's new film Dancing Village: The Curse Begins recently received a trailer. The only film I know by Stamboel is 2019's The Queen of Black Magic, but it's a f**king DOOZY to say the least. 


I watched about half of this trailer and am totally in. There's something so visceral about Stamboel's work. Some of it's the setting—the way he uses the jungle—I can almost feel the humidity and discomfort, the dirt and insects. But there's also an almost Body Horror element to some of his kills. They really leave an impression. 

The idea that this will be in selected theatres - I'd imagine I have almost no hope of seeing this in Clarksville, but then again, I've been surprised a lot lately by what's come through my town. So we'll see. 




Playlist:

TVOTR - Nine Types of Light
TVOTR - Dead Science
TVOTR - Desperate Youth, Blood Thirsty Babes
Moon Wizard - Sirens
Deftones - Gore
Ministry - Hopiumforthemasses
Adam Kesher - Eponymous
Justin Hamline - The House With Dead Leaves
Blackbraid - Blackbraid II
Captain Beefheart & His Magic Band - Lick My Decals Off, Baby




Card:

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


• Three of Swords
• Six of Cups
• Queen of Pentacles

Turbulence, Pleasure and Fertility, which sounds like another way of saying from Chaos comes opportunity.

New Music From Barry Adamson!!!

 

Another advance single from Barry Adamson's upcoming Cut to Black album dropped on Monday and it is fantastic! You can pre-order the new album HERE.




NCBD:

Light week, as I'm trimming a few titles from the Pull:


Ash Williams, you rogue! Only three issues left after this one (I think). Loving it!


At this point, this is easily my most anticipated book each month. The depth of character research and building that's going on here is awesome, and I'm actually excited to see more of the Cobra-La folks. 


Nice revisiting J.C. again. I dug the previous issue quite a bit; such old-school Vertigo flavor. 


Just riding this out. My malaise with the current X-Books doesn't have anything to do with this title, but they're all suffering from this rapid decline. Only one issue left of this series after this.




Watch:

I only watched the first 20 seconds of this trailer for Byte, a film I had not previously heard of, but those 20 seconds sold me!


Low-budget werewolf movies don't always work, but I'm hoping this one will. 




Playlist:

Type O Negative - Bloody Kisses
Soundgarden - Badmotorfinger
Chelsea Wolfe - She Reaches Out to She Reaches Out to She
The Jesus Lizard - Mouth Breather 45 single (Sunday You Need Love cover B-Side)
The Jesus Lizard - Puss 45 single (No B-Side)
The Jesus Lizard - Wheelchair Epidemic 45 single (Dancing Naked Ladies B-Side)
Gogol Bordello - Gypsy Punks: Underdog World Strike
Melvins/Lustmord - Pigs of the Roman Empire
Perturbator - Lustful Sacraments




Card:

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


• XI: Justice 
• Knight of Swords
• XV: The Devil

Justice or Lust in the Crowley/Harris deck again! Funny, because this card was in the #3 position two posts ago, and yesterday had VII The Chariot in the #2 position. Funny because I relate these cards, and they seem to be showing a process that is reversing itself. I'm just not quite sure what that process is. Also, maybe that feels like a bit of a reach, but my edict is to prevent myself from overthinking these when I do them, and that was definitely the first thing I 'saw' in the cards.

So what else do we have there then? Knight of Swords, or the Firey aspect of Air. This suggests force of Will tempered by Intellect so as to avoid conflict. The Devil has so many attributions, many of them quite fanciful. One I always keep in mind right off the bat is materialism over spiritualism. 

So Primordial forces (which we will pragmatically interpret here as uncontrollable mental or physical attributes - anger, fear, perhaps even logic - that need to be tempered by tempered by Will and a sharp eye on motivations. 

I'm not entirely sure this works for me - that's a lie, it does - but I want to keep it close and think about it. Might be telling me some things I don't want to hear at the moment concerning work.

Tuesday, April 16, 2024

Blackout in the Sleeping Village

I know it's summer now, as one of the rituals that eased in last year during my first full summer in Tennessee was Black Sabbath's Eponymous debut becoming my 'first thing in the morning' listen. This is no doubt because, for as long as I've loved this record, it will always remind me of two very particular summers—one when I was a Junior in High School and one when I was a year or two out of High School.  I listen to this year-round, but since moving back to the middle of the country and the climate I grew up with Sabbath's debut has come back to an association of hanging outdoors in the green environment of the midwest's humid, sub-tropical environment. 




Watch:

Holy cow! I completely missed that Larry Fessenden's Blackout hit VOD this past Friday! I remedied that right quick, let me tell you!


I really dug this one, but at this point, that's no surprise. I wouldn't say this is anywhere near my favorite film by Mr. Fessenden, but its ability to mix an almost regional approach with a fairly stacked cast reminded me of Harmony Korine's Gummo - although the subject matter and tone are nothing like that film. This environmentally conscious, small-town set film does some pretty interesting things with the concept of lycanthropy, in a tone that will feel familiar to those viewers who have been with Mr. Fessenden for a long time. Reminded me quite a bit of his 1991 film No Telling, a favorite of mine from the Director's oeuvre. 




Playlist:

Black Sabbath - Eponymous
Black Sabbath - Paranoid
Barry Adamson - Cut to Black (pre-release singles)
Zen Guerilla - Positronic Raygun
Adam Egpy Mortimer - The Obelisk




Card:

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


• II High Priestess
• VII The Chariot
• Page of Cups

Of particular interest to me this morning is the High Priestess in the starting position. This is the middle pillar of the sephirothic Tree of Life, and thus concerns concerns the descent of the Supernal into the lower, knowable realms and the ascent of the aspirant to higher plateaus. Taken with The Chariot - the origin of ideas - and the Page (Princess of Cups), which can indicate "Dreams become Reality," I would say this is a nice nod toward a path that might provide the possibility for my work to emerge into a higher (more successful) realm.

Monday, April 15, 2024

Midnight in the City

Still has the power to bring tears to my eyes, even after all this time, even after I've pretty much disengaged from everything Gonzalez has done since (except the Knife + Heart OST). Hearing this reminds me of the smoldering possibilities that still seemed to exist in 2011. Those are all but gone now, as we accept the shitty future the Corporations have made for us. Backed into a corner, hindsight isn't just nostalgic, it's paralyzing.

What a lead-in to our next topic of discussion...




Watch:

Heed my warning: much as I expected, if you live in the US, Civil War might F**K you up.


Another five-star nightmare from Alex Garland. I'm telling you, I've read all his books and seen all his movies - he never fails. This latest is possibly the most nerve-racking, terrifying film I've seen in years. K has had considerable PTSD from the flick, and I get it. I was literally terrified for the characters (one in particular) for pretty much the entirety of the film. Also, super cool that Garland still uses Geoff Barrow and Ben Salisbury for every score, and on top of that, there are not one but TWO Suicide tracks in the film. I love how, in the past year, I've now heard Suicide in a major theatrical release and Throbbing Gristle's "Hamburger Lady" in two (Love Lies Bleeding and V/H/S/85; I guess the latter isn't a major theatrical release, but I saw it in a theatre, so it felt like one at the time).




Read:

I had an insanely relaxing weekend—well, other than the anxiety from Civil War—reading comics. First, when my Drinking with Comics cohost Mike Shinabargar and his wife came down to visit us last weekend, he brought my Chicago Comics Pull down. This meant I could finally read the entirety of Garth Ennis and Jacen Burrows' The Ribbon Queen from start to finish.


This is easily my favorite Garth Ennis comic since Preacher. There - I said it. Man, this was just... perfect. A story of revenge set amidst a backdrop of the Me-Too and BLM movements in 2020, the characters are fantastically conceived, established and developed, and the situations are tense and beautifully woven together with one of the most horrific 'monsters' I've seen in quite some time. Ennis is one of the few writers in comics who can so effortlessly blend the social dramas of our time with pure nightmare fuel. 


After watching the above episode of Cartoonist Kayfabe, I felt compelled to dig in the box of old Punisher comics I pulled from my parents' house last year right before they moved and see if I did indeed own any Punisher War Zone. As I thought, I had issue one, but I also had 2-4, so I did a re-read Sunday. 


I really love how the CK boys add a level of artistic context I would normally never possess for books like this, and I thoroughly enjoyed this one. I have A LOT of old Punisher comics - the ones that have always traveled with me wherever I move are the original 80s mini-series, about the first 17 or so of the original ongoing 80s series, and the first 8 issues of Punisher War Journal (also 80s). My actual Frank Castle collection is at least 3x that size, though, and includes a lot of issues I bought as they came out, but which I'm not so sure about. The Punisher was one of those characters whose popularity in the 80s mandated he be strip-mined well into the mid-90s and the books and character suffered for it. I think War Zone was about where I checked out, hence why I only have those first four issues, which sucks because I didn't finish out what I'm now remembering is a pretty damn good story about Frank infiltrating the Carbone crime family. That means I'll be checking some back issue bins at Rick's Comic City and online this week, looking to find the rest of that storyline (seems to be up through issue 11).




Playlist:

Dödsrit - Nocturnal Will
M83 - Hurry Up, We're Dreaming
!!! - Myth Takes
Dödsrit - Nocturnal Will
King Gizzard & the Lizard Wizard - PetroDragonic Apocalypse
Ghost - Opus Eponymous
Anthrax - Persistence of Time
High on Fire - Cometh the Storm (pre-release singles)
Suicide - Eponymous
Jimmy Buffet - Living and Dying in 3/4 Time
Turnstile - Glow On
Idles - Tangk




Card:

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


• Page (Princess ) of Cups
• Queen of Cups
• XI: Justice

I progression, I think, from my previous spread. Emotions are still high, but I'm keeping myself in check. I have a feeling this is a recurring cycle to the point that I could probably graph it, so I'm going to add a piece of metadata to this and my previous post, maybe even work back using the search function for keywords like "irritation" and "tolerate" so I can possibly get an even more accurate idea of how often and in what 'pattern' this occurs. 

The XI, which is Lust in the Crowley/Harris deck, is a nod toward the primordial power of Anger, however, it can also occasionally indicate a possible Lunar influence. That should be easy enough to map. I used to keep a moon phase widget this site, however, those always break. Might look for another one and begin adding that data to this section of the page, as I would be interested how this might line up with lunar cycles. 

Friday, April 12, 2024

New Music from High on Fire!!!


Now that's what I'm talking about! The title track from Cometh the Storm, High on Fire's ninth studio album, out next Friday, April 19th on MNRK Heavy. Pre-order HERE.




Watch:

I've been busy as hell with regular work stuff and with watching movies and reading comics. Sounds like a great first-world problem, eh? Let's talk about what I've watched.

First, the Soska Sisters' new film Festival of the Dead is a Tubi exclusive and is now up on the streamer, ready to watch. A sequel to George A. Romero's Night of the Living Dead, this was a blast. 


The first ten minutes or so feel a bit like an NBC family morality flick, but Festival of the Dead very quickly asserts itself in the Romero tradition and does not look back. Loved some characters, loved watching others die in horrible ways, this one is fun and gory and just a good time in general. Don't let those first ten minutes fool you. 

Next, K and I caught Kiah Roache-Turner's Sting last night at the local cinema. Wow! This one is fantastic, too!


I've mentioned before that I have a bit of a spider phobia, and this one definitely plays on that. The FX are great, and the overall pace and tone here make for a great theatrical viewing. One thing I definitely noticed is there appears to be a huge chunk missing from this film (concerning the Bug Brothers, for those who've seen it), and I can only imagine the studio made the filmmaker trim a section to hit a specific run-time, and that's what came out. The film doesn't suffer for it, but it's pretty obvious. If anything, will make for a great extra feature on the eventual Blu-Ray.

There's a great interview with Sting's Creative Director about the practical FX in the film up on Bloody Disgusting HERE.

Finally, Shudder recently dropped the directorial debut by Alberto Corredor, a film titled Baghead.


Ostensibly a Talk to Me clone, this is still a pretty great first film. It's shot well, the lighting is great, and the location is an old Irish Pub that really steals the show, so it was pretty easy to enjoy this one despite any shortcomings. 




Read:

As I type this, I'm finishing up my re-read of Chris Claremont and John Byrne's "Dark Phoenix Saga." I'm reading this in Classic X-Men, the way I bought it at a comic show at a Knight's of Colombus Hall somewhere in southern Illinois way back in... I don't really know when. Late 80s? Early 90s?

One thing I've noticed with these Classic X-Men issues is I actually prefer the cover art for a lot of these reprints to the original issues. Here are two great examples:


Above is John Byrne's original cover for Uncanny X-Men 134, while below is his cover for the reprint.


The original is good, but this second version is haunting in my opinion. There's something so chillingly cold and cosmic about Master Mind's eyes, hollowed out by an injection of Chaos by Phoenix. The fact that his slack-jawed, empty visage is so far up in the foreground and that Phoenix is more or less just an outline filled with the same cosmic imagery really ties this together, as does the cool greenish-blue color palette, which helps add a clinically void feeling to this entire tableau. This could be a poster, as far as I am concerned.

Next, the climactic chapter of the saga, Uncanny X-Men 137:


This has been a classic, iconic comics image since I began collecting in 1986, and while it is great - the massive yellow ad copy taking up the upper fifth of the page doesn't really help matters - it pails in comparison to the one on the reprint, Classic X-Men 43:


This one is a lot less dramatic of a moment than the first, so I can't quite figure out why I like it better. Again, the color palette is definitely more to my overall liking, but also, despite the fact that the original image is much more of an 'action' image, this one feels like a moment stolen from the finale of the issue. I think this is a case of the technology being better and the image simply being overall more crisp. 




Playlist:

Turnstile - Glow On
Revolting Cocks - Beers, Steers and Queers
Chelsea Wolfe - She Reaches Out to She Reaches Out to She
Zen Guerilla - Positronic Raygun
Yawning Balch - Volume One
Trombone Shorty - Too True
Frankie and the Witch Fingers - Data Doom
Man Man - On Oni Pond




Card:

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


• Ten of Cups
• Eight of Swords
• Seven of Cups

Lots of emotion in this Pull. The pinion here, I think, is the Eight of Swords, as reading center-left-right, that is the middle card. This makes sense in that I've been prone to mood swings based on a certain person in my life; Ten of Cups is emotional maturity, Seven is Victory over emotion, but Eight of Swords can be read as Interference, that there's always some of that keeping me from being victorious over my emotions nad balancing them maturely in the face of trying situations. 

Wednesday, April 10, 2024

Maxxxine!

 

I woke up the morning of the Eclipse with the B-Side of Soundgarden's final album Down on the Upside. Giving this one a spin always takes me back.


Watch:

Ti West's Maxxxine finally gets a trailer! Yeah, I know I always bitch about trailers, but I am so excited for this one there was no way I wasn't watching it at least once.


I don't need any press to get me pumped for this one, as to say I've been waiting for it since that first after-credits tease at the end of Pearl's credits would be an understatement. I've been a West fan since I first saw The Roost back in 2005; I remember waiting what seemed an eternity for House of the Devil, and seeing him get a huge boost in the Horror community from that movie. That boost was nothing compared to the one he's had with this X trilogy, and I fully expect Maxxxine to further that. 

July 5th cannot come fast enough.




NCBD:

Fairly big week and I'm pretty psyched for some of these, especially 


This issue will round out the second volume of Jeff Lemire & Gabriel H. Walta's Phantom Road. This book is getting weirder and weirder. 


The Penultimate issue of Al Ewing & Luciano Vecchio's Resurrection of Magneto. I've LOVED this one, and I'm super curious to see how it resolves, even if I most likely won't be sticking around afterward. There's such an interesting 'metaphysical' aspect to this book, and where that can often go wrong and incur a big eyeroll, Ewing always does that kind of thing correctly.


Starscream verses Soundwave? F**k yeah! 


Christopher Yost and Val Rodrigues's Unnatural Order ends its first arc with this fourth issue. Great series so far; I'm digging the blend of Pre-history and future space, Vikings and Picts and Tech. Kind of a throwback, in some ways, to a lot of 80s SciFi Fantasy comics.


Despite my initial misgivings, I really dug the first issue of What if... Carter Burke had lived. Looking forward to where this is going.

Also, I thought I'd try a new book that technically came out last week:


I don't know anything about this one, but the title grabbed me right away.




Playlist:

Soundgarden - Down on the Upside
Bauhaus - The Sky's Gone Out
Red Lorry Yellow Lorry - Talk About the Weather
Drug Church - Hygiene
Jim Williams - Possessor OST
Thee More Shallows - More Deep Cuts
Final - Solaris




Card:

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

Some friends drove down from Chicago this past weekend and, after hanging out for the weekend, we drove out to Paducah, KY for the Eclipse on Monday, April 8th. From that location, we experienced totality, which was crazy awesome. Totality lasted for about two minutes; during that time, I made sure to pull one card. 


Six of Swords. In the Thoth deck, this card is "Science;" it can indicate objectivity and clarity, a healthy balance of emotions and intellect. Also, this card may indicate a good time to make a decision.

In my grimoire, I also have this added, "I can see clearly now the rain is gone." I find that last bit particularly interesting, in that it's been raining all week, and literally just seems to have stopped. 

Other attributes for this card include Innovation and experimentation.

Monday, April 8, 2024

I'm a Monkey Man


I've been 'off' for a few days while some friends were in town, so I'm behind on some stuff from last week. First, this Orville Peck/Willie Nelson track that dropped last Friday and makes me super happy. To hear these two together is just... wonderful. I love how Willie does these tracks with the younger generation of real country stars to welcome them in - he did a similar one with Kacey Musgraves a few years back.



Watch:

I saw two flicks in the theatre late last week. First up, Arkasha Stevenson's The First Omen

 

This was not for me, but then, I pretty much hate the original Omen as well. If you dig that one, you'll dig this (I think). Stevenson and her team - which includes cinematographer Aaron Morton (Evil Dead 2013; No One Will Save You) and Composer Mark Korven (The Witch; The Lighthouse) go out of their way to evoke the 70s tone of the original film, so this definitely feels as though it takes place in that world. Also, Nell Tiger Free does a great job as the lead. My problems really revolve around the script, but like I said, if you dig the original, I think you'll dig this. If you're on the fence and have it in mind to see only one Catholic/Nun Horror flick this summer, I'd go with Immaculate. It's just a better movie, in my opinion.

Next up was Dev Patel's Directorial debut: Monkey Man!

 

Dev Patel wrote/directed/and starred in this one, and it is quite the debut. A visceral fable of Haves and Have-Nots set amidst India's hard-line class division in a fictionalized version of Mumbai named Yatana, Patel plays "The Kid," a man orphaned by corrupt politicians as a child who has now grown up with only one guiding star in his sky: revenge. 

See it in a theatre if you can. The choreography and score by Jed Kurzel will light you up for days.




Read:

I started a re-read of Chris Claremont's Uncanny X-Men this weekend. I've done this before and fallen off rather quickly, so this time I'm really going to try and stick to it. A few years ago (more than a few), I found a huge stack of single issues at a thrift store in Harbor City, CA, all in the mid 100s, and I've never read most of them. My readership began as a kid in the 80s, right around issue 211, and although I still have a bunch of holes in the run, I'm going to go through what I have. Starting with a bunch of issues of Classic X-Men; the monthly reprint series that ran in the 80s as the title became more popular, bringing hard-to-find storylines like The Dark Phoenix Saga back for newer fans to read. So that's exactly where I started.

Reprinting Uncanny X-Men #130

Reprinting Uncanny X-Men 131

While I do own a beat-up copy of The Phoenix's first appearance in Uncanny 101, I'm not even 100% certain I've ever actually read the entirety of the Phoenix Saga, so this is a great place to begin; I picked these Classic X-Men up years ago at a comic convention and really need this re-read to figure out what I've missed. As well as I know a lot of the lore and history, some of that was no doubt absorbed via years of fandom. It'll be very cool to actually experience Claremont's run.




Playlist:

Revolting Cocks - Beers Steers and Queers
Miranda Sex Garden - Carnival of Souls
Type O Negative - Bloody Kisses (Suspended in Dusk Vinyl)
Chelsea Wolfe  - She Reaches Out to She Reaches Out to She
Perturbator - The Uncanny Valley
Anthrax - Persistence of Time
King Gizzard & The Lizard Wizard - PetroDragonic Apocalypse
Turnstile - Glow On
Beck - Odelay
Rollins Band - The End of Silence
Brigette Calls Me Baby - This House is Made of Corners EP
Amigo the Devil - Yours Until the End of the War
The Tiger Lillies - Bad Blood  + Blasphemy
Tom Waits - Rain Dogs
Mannequin Pussy - I Got Heaven
Mannequin Pussy - Drunk II (single)




Thursday, April 4, 2024

New Music from Better Lovers!


No idea if this is an advance single from a forthcoming record, but I LOVE this!




Watch:

Despite growing up in the '80s and early '90s as a huge fan of Chris Claremont's X-Men I was a touch too old to ever encounter the X-Men cartoon that ran in the '90s. My girlfriend on the other hand, was a fan, so when Marvel announced the new season of X-Men '97 premiering on Disney+ last month, she was excited. I knew I would watch this with her, but I wasn't sure how I'd feel about it. Well, I'm pretty damn happy to report that after sitting down to watch the first episode last night and not breaking away until we'd watched the first four, she was over the moon and I was very pleasantly surprised.


Of course, the cartoon is still largely based on that first Blue Team/Gold Team design era for the X-Men, heavy Jim Lee, and that's not my favorite era by any means. That said, I was pretty impressed how they worked in both the Madelyne Pryor/Nathan Summers storyline and the LifeDeath story with Forge and Storm. I'm 100% in.




Watch:

I think there was a very specific chain of events that led to me liking that X-Men 97 cartoon yesterday. Let me retrace that here.

First, I watched this Cartoon Kayfabe video:


I've made no bones about how disappointed I've been with the current state of the X-Titles. I was off reading them for close to a decade when I fell back into the Hickman Powers of X/House of X, and really, I think even after he left the books were fabulous for about the first year. But of late, as the Krakoan era is winding down, I've begun to loathe the overall franchise. Something about this video made me realize that I have strong, good memories even of the bad comics I've read, and I think that really helped boost me up for the cartoon. 



Playlist:

Turnstile - Glow On
Rollins Band - The End of Silence
Ned's Atomic Dustbin - Godfodder
Jim Williams - Possessor OST
Oranssi Pazuzu - Live at Roadburn 2017
Dödsrit - Nocturnal Will




Tuesday, April 2, 2024

The Acid Machine !


Whoah. I'm not sure how I stumbled upon Brazilian Stoner/Doom/Desert Metal band The Acid Machine two days ago, but hot dam! These guys kick some serious ass! New album Mushrooms is out April 12th. You can listen to/support the band at their Bandcamp HERE or by clicking the widget above. 




NCBD:

Another short week on the Pull. Not a bad thing. Here we go:


The third issue of The One Hand. I'm already hooked on this and sister title The Six Fingers; I really enjoy the world Ram V and Dan Watters have built here. 


I'm planning a re-read of Void Rivals sometime soon, so I don't have a lot to say about this one other than I'm still loving this series. That cover is classic 80s SciFi/Fantasy comics, too!


Even though I don't have a bad thing to say about Gerry Duggan's X-Men book, I'm honestly no longer enjoying seeing any X-Book come up on my list. I just can't wait for this Fall of X to be over, so it can do its next thing, and I can leave that alone.




Watch:

From what I saw of this trailer, Cuckoo looks insane in the best possible way.


There is a moment in this that gave me some of the best chills I've had in some time. Very much looking forward. Writer/Director Tilman Singer's previous film Luz gets some great accolades, yet somehow I've yet to watch it. Gonna have to fix that soon. 



Playlist:

The Cure - Disintegration
Miranda Sex Garden - Fairytales of Slavery
Chasms - On The Legs of Love Purified
Brown Whörnet - Stroke the Apechild
Type O Negative - Bloody Kisses (Suspended in Dusk version/Vinyl)
Zombi - Direct Inject
Iron Monkey - Spleen & Goad (pre-release singles)
Spotlights - Seance EP
Lustmord - Much Unseen Is Also Here
Rollins Band - The End of Silence




Card:

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


• Five of Swords
• Four of Pentacles
• IV: The Emperor

Numerically speaking, this is one Five and Two Fours, which suggests Stabilization after Damage. Taking the Suites/Faces into account, that's Earthly structure kicking back in after a hit to the Intellect, and we see that structure is a direct draw from the paradigms or "rules" that govern all life. 

The news of Ed Piskor's death really messed me up for the last two days. I know it seems weird that someone I don't know personally could have that effect on me, but it did. I think part of that came from seeing how the bridge away from his ultimate choice disappeared behind him. There's no way to say whether he did what he was accused of, and now, there never will be. This entire episode sent me into a bit of existential crisis because it further proves what I am having a very difficult time acclimating into my own operating system - the Internet is just not a good thing for human beings and human society as a whole. There's seemingly no way to turn back now, but faaauuuuhhhccckkkk - we're already being ground beneath the heel of a 'Robot Overlord;' look no further than the interface before you. 

The cards are a welcome reminder to look past this modern overlay, at the fundamentals of being "human." Seek a stabilizing path forward with that. Easier said than done, but whatever. It's that or give up, which I don't think I have it in me to ever do. 

Art Brut - Lost Weekend

 \

Man, it has been a minute since I listened to Art Brut! Back in 2011 when Brilliant! Tragic! came out, Mr. Brown sent me this record and I couldn't get enough of it for a few months. I'm not really sure how these guys slipped so far off my radar. 

Here's the thing: I haven't had a functioning in-home CD player in probably close to six or seven years now, and when the one in my L.A. car died circa 2018, I all but stopped listening to anything on the format. Add in a general malaise at the format's planned obsolescence that has finally begun to arrive. 

This past week, I found an old DVD player that works perfectly as a dedicated CD spinner. Since then, I've been enjoying a joy-ridden free fall through my fairly extensive collection, re-discovering music I'd forgotten about at every step.




Watch:

I'm just going to leave this here. Man, this is f**king me up.


RIP Ed. 




Playlist:

My Life With the Thrill Kill Kult - Final Blindness (45 Single)
Protomartyr - Under Color of Official Right
Brown Whörnet - Radio Album
Art Brut - Brilliant! Tragic!
How To Destroy Angels - Eponymous EP




Monday, April 1, 2024

New Music from Ben Frost!


I've been loosely following Ben Frost since 2009's By the Throat. I cheered for him when he landed the score to Dark - one of my all-time favorite shows. I didn't realize he had a new record coming out, but now that I've heard Scope Neglect, it's almost certainly going to make my favorites of the year list, just strictly based on how absolutely different it is from everything else he's done. 




Watch:

I am happy to report that Andrew Lobel and Michael Mohan's Immaculate is a fantastic time at the theatre, and I absolutely love and adore them and the studio for releasing this one Easter weekend! What do the dissenters say about that?


Well, that's a bit much. Not sure a movie could ever be *ahem* pure evil, but then, these people are prone to embellishment, yes? Either way, I very much enjoyed this one and put up a new episode of The Horror Vision Presents: Blood & Coffee on it.


I'm developing the Blood & Coffee series as a series of short, spoiler-free video reviews I can knock out by myself when the other members of the show are indisposed or not interested in the flick. I think Immaculate is getting a bit of resistance from the Horror Community simply based on Sydney Sweeney, however, as I talk about in the review, she was instrumental in this one getting made, so while I'm not about to sit through a lot of what she's been in so far, she's A-OK in my book.




Read:

I finished Malcolm Devlin's And Then I Woke Up on Saturday. Fantastic book. Reminded me a lot of David Moody's Hater.


And Then I Woke Up is a really interesting angle on the now pretty saturated Zombie/Hate Virus trope, and definitely feels like it breathes some fresh life into the subgenre. If you're a fan of those types of stories, give this one a go. I think you'll dig. Reiterating a hearty "Thank You!" to my Horror Vision co-host Ray for gifting me this one. 



Next up: A re-read of Ivy Tholen's Tastes Like Candy, which I read for the first time last year and LOVED. Imagine my delight when, a few weeks ago, Ms. Tholen announced a sequel is heading our way on April 22nd!


Couldn't be more excited about this one!!!




Playlist:

Ben Frost - Scope Neglect
Zombi - Direct Inject
Money Mark - Mark's Keyboard Repair
Miranda Sex Garden - Carnival of Souls
Man Man - Life Fantastic
Local Natives - Gorilla Manor
Talking Heads - More Songs About Buildings and Food




Card:

Back to Aleister Crowley and Lady Freida Harris's Thoth deck for the Pull today:


• Ace of Disks
• X: Fortune
• VI: The Lovers

The struggle against the process of monetary enlightenment is difficult, but not without reward. Lean on someone else. 





Friday, March 29, 2024

Gwar - Stalin's Organs

 

One week ago on the 23rd of March was the tenth anniversary of Dave Brockie's death. A decade. That's nearly a third of how old 1995's Ragnarok is. I wanted to do something to commemorate Oderus Urungus's exile from our slovenly realm, but I was in the middle of Man Man week, and posting this past week has been tenuous at best. Anyway, we miss you, Oderus. Earth hasn't been salaminized since you went away, and I'm sure a lot of the folks who read this page would agree that we could really use it right about now.
 


Watch:

I was on the fence about this one, but seeing a post by Beyondfest earlier today, I bought tickets for tomorrow afternoon:

 
I think I have a phobia of Catholic Horror - weird because I wasn't raised Catholic, although I did attend the odd service as a kid. But there's just something icky about all the pageantry and regalia. This is getting a lot of word of mouth, and a lot of that is making Sydney Sweeney look like a philanthropist for getting a film that has apparently been languishing unmade for over twenty years. I have no idea who she is, but I'm definitely intrigued. Perfect weekend, too. 




DwC:

Mike Shinabargar and I started a new show! Drinking with Comics Presents: DRUNK on ENERGON!


Once again, I had a lot of fun with this one. I'm absolutely in love with Kirkman's take on these properties, and it gives me great joy to sit around and discuss them with my oldest friend from the Realm of  Comic Shops!




Playlist:

Grand Ducy - Petite Fours
Brand New - Daisy
Zombi - Direct Inject
Rollins Band - End of Silence
Money Mark - Mark's Keyboard Repair
Ministry - Houses of the Molé
Suicide - Eponymous
Miranda Sex Garden - Carnival of Souls
NIN - The Fragile
Fantomas - Suspended Animation
Gwar - Ragnarok
Metallica - Hardwired... To Self Destruct
Oranssi Pazuzu - Muukalainen Puhuu
Justin Hamline - The House With Dead Leaves
Allegaeon - Iridescent (single)
Allegaeon - Apoptosis
Various - Satan's Proto Discoteque (mix CD circa 2000)




Card:

From Jonathan Grimm's Hand of Doom Tarot, which you can buy HERE. Also, Grimm recently launched a Kickstarter for his new deck, The FaeBound Tarot, which you can marvel at and acquire HERE.


• Page of Swords
• Kind of Swords
• Two of Swords

This makes PERFECT sense. I have felt like fighting EVERYONE for the last few days, and I'm not entirely sure why. 

Thursday, March 28, 2024

New Music From Arab Strap!

 As usual, huge thanks to Mr. Brown for sending me this, as I've had me 'ead in me arse for the last couple days, and did not see this drop. We're getting awfully close to that new album I'm totally fine with it 👍don't give a f*** anymore 👍 dropping May 10th on Rock Action Records. Pre-order link right HERE

Glad to have these guys back for another record; I mean, Aidan and Malcolm went into hiatus while W. was in office, so I kind of thought they might leave the fuckin' planet with what's currently happening. 

This has to be just about my favorite music video since some of the old Liars stuff. 




Watch:

I had an Ivan Kavanagh double-feature last night. I started with his 2021 film Son:


And then moved on to 2014's The Canal:


I'd seen both of these films previously, but I was happy to go back and revisit them. Both are fantastic; unflinching would definitely be a word I'd use to describe Kavanagh's style. There's a visceral slap to Kavanagh's vision - it sounds a lot like the sound of wet flesh against brick. It's almost mean, but that interpretation is undercut by the lengths to which this filmmaker goes to show the fragile humanity of his protagonists. We see this with Rupert Evans' David in The Canal, and we see it perfected with Andi Matichak's Laura/Anna in Son. There are moments in Son that nearly bring me to tears and the visceral gore that follows later in the film kind of bounces off those soft, quieter moments. Mr. Kavanagh doesn't come across as wanting the terrible acts we witness on screen to befall his characters; instead, it feels as though he's trying to guide them out of the fire to safety.




Playlist:

Rollins Band - The End of Silence
Run-DMC - Raising Hell
Slayer - Show No Mercy
Beck - The Information
Angelo Badalamenti - Twin Peaks: Fire Walk With Me OST




Card:

From Jonathan Grimm's Hand of Doom Tarot, which you can buy HERE. Also, Grimm recently launched a Kickstarter for his new deck, The FaeBound Tarot, which you can marvel at and acquire HERE.


• Ace of Swords
• XX: Judgement
• Knight of Swords

A breakthrough of Intellect - something I feel like I can totally use but is definitely eluding me while I wallow in some unwelcome self-doubt - leads to a rebirth of energy synthesized from the balance of Will and Creativity.