Tuesday, November 15, 2005

Apocalypse Brazil

When I was but the littlest-wee of wee lads, I would often wield a bloody double-sided battle-axe in triumphant murder-marches against the neighbouring castles of my mountainous and gory homeland. Okay, that's completely untrue. What I really mean is, because I was a kid, my mom would take me with her when she went shopping. She didn't want me watching the MTV, you know. Electric Circus! Anyway, sometimes she would go to this little warehouse called Nu 2 U, a squat ugly cellblock brambling around in some very barren gravel-roaded country. It was across the river, where we hardly ever went at all. An old man who may have had a glass eye ran the place from behind an enormous stack of ceramic plates. Bear with me. The entire place was crammed with dinnerware and cutlery and the odd tweazle-haired rocking-horse stashed in the back. Blue-glass saucers piled higher than my Charlie Brown head, random red glasses boxed-up in the darker corners, heap and heaps of pale yellow and pale orange melmac plates, plastic pitchers bigger than the car—the place was a gold mine of discarded dinner dreck. Amazing. I still eat off of some of those old plates, you know? And let me hasten to add that my family was not like some Faulkner clan slash white trash, grubbing in the dirt for food. We grubbed in the dirt for the love of grubbery, pure and simple. Just because it was old or second-hand (or sixteenth-hand) didn't mean we didn't like that stuff in that store. It was gold, nobody else had anything like it—hmmm—and we loved and still love the unique finds we would make in that store. What I mean is, sometimes I just have to talk about stuff that I know you guys have probably heard of before, but I don't care, because I just found out and to me, it's treasure and pirates and swinging from the tops'l with a sword in hand. A sword, for godsakes!

Today, following a random series of links, I fished up against the restaurant at the end of the universe, alternatively known as WFMU's Beware Of The Blog. Which is no surprise, because I always end up at that heap of remainders, anyway. What I found there was something parading around in thirty-year old jungle-zombie gear, a band called Secondos e Molhos, whatever that means. I'll tell you what, I can barely get my head around them. The music is alright, not so much to my taste, but what drives me is the pre-KISS era stylings of this Brazilian group vs the sounds-exactly-like-a-girl lead singer's voice (Coheed and Cambria, you are now rubbish) vs the seventies' style folk-rock—so, I guess, contemporary for their times?—tunes of our heroes. Whatevs, it's the style, mostly. These guys look like gay Apocalypse Now. They look like cannibals on the banks of the great grey green greasy fever-treed Limpopo. Check them out here (there's a lot of links provided). Diablo!

Listening: I finally found a website with the sugar-rock Pelle Carlberg version of The Darkness' hit. I can't get the version on his band's site to work, the usual 404 stuff. I like The Darkness, and I thought (I still think) that their massive hit deserved every second of its fifteen minutes. Also, I haven't seen teeth like that on a lead singer since the last time I saw a Monster Magnet video. Oh, those British. And Dave Wyndorf, too. So sexy with their ugly bodies and carefree attitude. Which is why this version of this song is so good, because it still preserves the best part of the original song, which was the sudden shrug and why-the-hell-not of even singing a line beginning "I believe". This is a good song, but it's on the bottom of the site's page and going fast, so grab it and stuff it in that ugly parka and run. "I Believe In A Thing Called Love" + Edson [Edit: and, gone!]

Reading: Haruki Murakami is like wonderful old wood from the hull of a sailing ship, like heart-of-oak polished by every sea and, like that hull, bringing with it a little of the everything from the everywhere to which he's been. The man can write on nigh-anything and make me willing to ignore the ridiculousness of the situation and believe the emotion, the gravitas, the bloody bells-and-weights of the heart, right there on the page. Pathos, not in a badly-regarded or negative sense, is his forté. Murakami is practically Dickens in this sense-overwhelming method. And because of this talent of his, HM can pretty much bow-tie any emotion he depicts onto any object he decribes, like, oh, say, loneliness and spaghetti. Which sounds terrible, bathetic, ponderous, even. But this short essay/story of his is wonderful, and not to be missed if you're a fan of sweet clean lines, soft humour, sensible sadness. "The Year Of Spaghetti" + Haruki Murakami

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