Army of God – Go Fight
Blue Rooms – Synesect
Bravery (Solitary Experiments Remix) – Assemblage 23
Brother – Ari Mason
Censorshit (Faderhed Remix) [Explicit] – Nitro/Noise
Cult of Fake – Angelspit
Everything – Psychic Teens
Found in Filth – Pig
Honey – KANGA
Instinct of Ego – Koban
Nemesis – Shriekback
Piggy – Pretty Addicted
Pride – Lie
Prune That Dirty Staman – Vampyr Anvil
Schism – Reactor7x
Spectral Inverter – Izoloscope
Synchronized Stigma – Rave the Reqviem
Tantrum – Dead When I Found Her
The Dust of Fallen Rome – Youth Code
The Revolution (Will Not By Synthesized) [Benjamin’s Plague Remix] – RIOTLEGION
Turn To Zero – Hexadiode
Vices [Explicit] – The Sweetest Condition
Wait Now – In Letter Form
Wasted Memories – N3ova
What Remains – SOLVE
I Don’t Get Anything but Shit from You [Explicit] – Rein
World Destruction – Time Zone featuring John Lydon & Afrika Bambaataa
The Big Reverse – Dead When I Found Her
Depression – The Thought Criminals
Knock Us Down – The Sweetest Condition
I Was There (feat. Carolyn Powers) – Surveillance
I Close My Eyes – Covenant
2 Sides – Slave Unit
Books on the Bonfire (edit) – The Bolshoi
Volatile Times (Us Version) – IAMX
Shibari – Snuff
Lies – The Thompson Twins
Rude Awakening – N3ova
Conspiracy To Riot – Sage Francis
Wrath – Hell:Sector
The KKK Took My Baby Away (808 Edit) – United Rhytmhs Of Brazil
I Am the Enemy – Mr. Strange
Finally What You Wanted – The Panic Lift
War Pigs (Original Mix) – Hyrule War
Judgement Hymn – Theatre of Hate
New World of Shit – Beatbox MacHinery
Prisoner’s Cinema – The Dead Milkmen
Same Old Shit – Leæther Strip
Cheerful Hypocrisy (Aesthetic Perfection Remix) – SNOG
and the wheel turns – SØLVE
Hallelujah – Leonard Cohen
I’ll Stand By You (2009 Remastered Version) – Pretenders
Currently, life out there is hard for musical acts, and it’s EXTREMELY tough for Underground musicians. Unless you sound like Seals & Crofts, the world of music is a very cold place to pitch your tent right now.
This week, at least three really great bands whom I follow announced that they either had to cancel a tour or hold a fundraiser because they were experiencing financial difficulties. Now, I’m not about to ask you to help them financially by pledging to their drives (Although, if you do, that would be great); what I’m asking won’t cost you a cent, and will only take a few seconds of your time.
The overwhelming majority of the musical artists whose work I post, or whose live shows I recommend are currently considered too weird, dark, political or any combination of those three for mainstream acceptance (Translation: You won’t be seeing Pretty Addicted on the Jimmy Fallon show anytime soon). That’s a problem which is going to a while to fix. In the interim, here’s a Band-Aid for this musical boo-boo.
If I post a song by an underground band (or any band, really, but an Underground band in particular), please it share the video/song/club date or hit “like” on the artist’s Facebook page. That’s it. It only takes about six seconds of your time (yes, I’ve actually done the calculations) but it might mean the world to a struggling artist.
And if you post a video/song/club date for an Underground artist, please ask people to share the info or swing by their page & give ‘em a Like.
That’s it. Other than making that golden calf statue, this is all I need.
As a reminder of the Six-Second Rule, here’s Ayria with “Six Seconds”
God willing, we will prevail, in peace and freedom from fear, and in true health, through the purity and essence of our natural fluids.
Thank you and have a Happy Halloween.
Our story so far: Inspired by Ashbury Height’s “Skeleton Tree” experiment, I decided to do the unthinkable – release five of the dozen or so demos I’ve sent to the other Milkmen over the past year. I’ve already posted “Her Name is Witch” , “Billy Wants a Voodoo Doll” , and “Hillbilly with a Meat Cleaver”, and Only The Dead Get Off At Kymlinge. The final entry into the Halloween Demos pantheon is a cover of Rush’s “Witch Hunt”….No, seriously; it’s a cover of Rush’s “Witch Hunt”
Why? Because US & European politics over the last year got me thinking about xenophobia and the exploitation of the fear of “The Other” and this song has some of the most PUNK ROCK lyrics ever written on that subject.
They say there are strangers who threaten us
In our immigrants and infidels
They say there is strangeness too dangerous
In our theaters and bookstore shelves
Those are great lyrics. As are the closing lines:
Quick to judge
Quick to anger
Slow to understand
Ignorance and prejudice
And fear walk hand in hand
As for the cover, well, when you’re attempting to convince the rest of your band to cover a Rush tune, a lot of effort is involved; hence all of the sonic oddities. If we were to ever tackle this one, I’d push for using a female vocalist because women can sing in a much more pissed off manner about injustice than men ever will be able to.
By the way, his is the song that got me started down the road to The Halloween Demos. I was in my studio one Sunday looking for a way to kick-start an afternoon of songwriting when the idea of covering this song popped into my head. I do that, from time-to-time: cover a song to see if it leads to writing an original one, or if there are any sonic motifs from the cover that I can cannibalism into an original tune. Anywhoooo….after i started working on this song, I thought “Why not write some songs about witches and witchcraft?” “Here Name is Witch” & “Billy Wants a Voodoo Doll” were written shortly after that.
Well, i guess there’s not much else left to say other than maybe I’ll do this agin next year (on a much smaller scale) and, of course, Happy Halloween.
Our story so far: Inspired by Ashbury Height’s “Skeleton Tree” experiment, I decided to do the unthinkable – release five of the dozen or so demos I’ve sent to the other Milkmen over the past year. I’ve already posted “Her Name is Witch” , “Billy Wants a Voodoo Doll” , and “Hillbilly with a Meat Cleaver”.
My philosophy of demos uses to be that I should strive to make the demo sound as much like a finished, polished song as possible. Hell, I even mastered a few of ’em before submitting them to the rest of the band. Don’t do that. Just get the basics and move on. The hours you invest in getting just the right snare sound on a demo is time that could’ve been better spent songwriting.
“Only The Dead Get Off At Kymlinge” will obviously need some extra work if it’s ever to see the light-of-day as an official Milkmen song (I should switch “Now I’m drinking champagne” to “Mixing trains and cocaine” as well as replacing that “Stop freaking me out” part). That said, i think that this demo still has all the basic elements for success. Plus, it’s based on the the greatest Urban Legend of all time: The story of the Silverpilen.
Back in the 1960’s, the city of Stockholm purchased some new green commuter trains and, apparently, the company which manufactured the trains tossed in an unpainted, silver demo model into the bargain (see, never spend too much time on your demos!).
Well, the Stockholm Metro network decided to not bother painting the Silverpilen (“Silver Arrow”) and to not put up and advertisements inside of it (If you’ve ever ridden the subway or a commuter train in the states, you know what I mean). Then they decided to run the train only late at night to maximize the number of drunken Swedes who would encounter it.
Around this time Metro also abandoned work on the what was to be a new station at Kymlinge – effectively creating a semi-complete “ghost station”. So, drunken Swedes + mysterious late-night train x ghost station = the Urban Legend that people who boarded the Silverpilen would be taken to the Kymlinge stop and hacked to pieces.
Bara de doda stiger av I Kymlinge
Our story so far: Inspired by Ashbury Height’s “Skeleton Tree” experiment, I decided to do the unthinkable – release five of the dozen or so demos I’ve sent to the other Milkmen over the past year. I’ve already posted “Her Name is Witch” and “Billy Wants a Voodoo Doll”. I’ve accelerated the releases a bit as some folks have taken notice of them.
Hillbilly with a Meat Cleaver was not inspired by American Horror Story’s “Butcher” character (Although I do live that show and Kathy Bates is a joy to watch in that role – she’s really getting into it), but by Eric Powell’s brilliantly twisted “Hillbilly” comic books. (“The Devil’s Cleaver will suffer no witch!”).
Our story so far: Inspired by Ashbury Height’s “Skeleton Tree” experiment, I decided to do the unthinkable – release five of the dozen or so demos I’ve sent to the other Milkmen over the past year. On Friday night I posted “Her Name is Witch”.
Billy Wants a Voodoo Doll was inspired by the much more disturbing “Billy Wants a Doll” from Marlo Thomas’ 1970’s “Free To be You and Me” special. All I really remembered about the original song was my dad’s comment that Billy probably didn’t live in a steel-town.
Anyhooo, I always wanted to write a song about New Orleans, so here it is…
I’ve probably written fifteen or sixteen songs this year. Of those, I’ve submitted at least a dozen to the Milkmen as demos. Out of those five or six will probably land on the next Milkmen album if I’m lucky. That’s the way songwriting works in our band: everybody writes and submits songs (or parts of songs) and we keep a few and the rest are never heard form again. It’s pretty much the same process the Duggars use to decide which of their children they’ll allow to live.
Normally, I don’t share my demos with people outside of the band. This is because the songs always tend to sound better after the other guys contribute to them. Or, in the case of the songs that get scrapped, I relieved that I was sparred the embarrassment.
That said, of all the songs I’ve submitted in the last few months, five were of a particular spooky nature. These I’ve christened “The Halloween Demos”.
The first of the lot is “Her Name is Witch” which was inspired by a radio play about former witches being reprogrammed as witch-hunters.
Here’s the song…
Don’t Fear the Reaper (Radio Edit) – Heaven 17
Halloween Theme – Iszoloscope
Ritual – Ari Mason
Monster (Inside The House) – Pretty Addicted
Z.O.M.B.I.E. – Santa Hates You
Astro Zombies [Explicit] – The Misfits
Zombie – Juno Reactor
Jesus Was A Zombie [Explicit] – Zombie Girl
You Wish Me Dead Get In Line – Alien Vampires
Keep The Dark – Lucifer’s Aid
As Darkness Falls – Solemn Novena
I Have a Devil in Me [Explicit] – Go Fight
666 On The Crucifix (Be My Enemy Mix) – Caustic
The Devils In The Chemicals – Ego Likeness
Devil In Me – Flesh & Fell
Afterglow (The Rain Within Remix) – Assemblage 23
DARK DRIVE – The Rain Within
Foreshadow – VIO
Haunting Me [Explicit] – Stabbing Westward
Black – The Soft Moon
The Killing Moon – Echo and the Bunnymen
Ghost Requiem – Delirium
Mass For The Dead – Reactor7x
Black Heart – Black Heart
Teddy – RazorBladeKisses
There’s no need to be confused! Go here and read the preface to the first experiment.
Experiment Three: Home
Since the first two experiments resulted in very few actual scares (I should admit that neither Vienna nor I frighten easily. So, if you’re the type of person who has nightmares after re-runs of Friends, your results for this experiments will differ greatly from ours) I decided to fall back on something that I remembered as being scary as Hell – A 1996 episode of The X-Files called “Home“.
For many people, Vienna & myself included, Friday night in the early to mid-90’s was synonymous with the X-Files. No matter what was going on in your life, come 9 PM, you stopped whatever you were doing and watched the X-Files. If your home burned to the ground at 8:30 in the evening, killing your entire family, by 9 PM you were sitting on your neighbor’s sofa listening to the show’s intro music. That’s just how we all rolled back in the 90’s, folks.
Looking back, The X-Files was not a really great show. Don’t get me wrong, it wasn’t bad; it’s just that the few episodes I’ve stumbled upon in the past couple of years didn’t hold up very well. I guess the real reason that we were all glued to our TV on Friday night at 9 PM was because the X-Files, for all of its flaws, was at least better than all of the shit that was on TV in the early 90’s. And when I say “shit”, I’m being kind. I could devote thirty paragraphs to hurling insults at televised feces like Home Improvement or Everybody Loves Raymond. The fact is that TV in the early 90’s just plain sucked.
Maybe that’s why “Home” had such an impact on me when I first watched it. This might be hard for people who’ve come of age in the era of American Horror Story to grasp, but “Home” was like nothing that had ever appeared on TV previously.
If you’ve never seen the episode (it’s available on Netflix), you’ll be impressed by home much black humor and mind-blowing what-the-fuck-isms the writers managed to cram into just the opening 15 minutes alone. Yes, that dead baby sure does get around!
Unfortunately, the producers of the X-Files didn’t dig all of the dead baby humor; they felt that the episode “had gone too far”, and Fox banned it from ever being re-aired on their network. Yes, the very same network that would later give us The Littlest Groom.
For a piece of horror to be really effective it has to contain That Scene. A scene so scary that you never forget it. It’s the one scene your mind instantly goes to when you think of the piece. In The Haunting, That Scene is the one wherein Eleanor thinks she’s holding Theodora’s hand, but…well, you know. Here’s That Scene in “Home“. It does for “Wonderful, Wonderful” what A Clockwork Orange did for “Singing in the Rain” and what The Littlest Groom did for Humanity.
So, now it’s time to apply our highly scientific scoring method to the episode.
I’m going to leave you with one disturbing bit of trivia about “Home“. Writer Glen Morgan ‘s inspiration for the episode came, partially, from an incident which Charlie Chaplin documented in his autobiography. A young Chaplin had been staying at a miner’s house. Following dinner, the miner said he had something to show Charlie. That something was a man with no arms or legs who had been sleeping in the kitchen cupboard.
A half man with no legs, an oversized, blond, flat-shaped head, a sickening white face, a sunken nose, a large mouth and powerful muscular shoulders and arms, crawled from underneath the dresser … “Hey, Gilbert, jump!” said the father and the wretched man lowered himself slowly, then shot up by his arms almost to the height of my head.
“How do you think he’d fit in with a circus? The human frog!”
I was so horrified I could hardly answer. However, I suggested the names of several circuses that he might write to.
Next time: The once mighty nation of Brittan collectively loses its shit.