Monday, December 13, 2010

Interesting article in relation to the "Decline of the English Department" article we read the other day!

Monday, December 6, 2010


I thought this was interesting given our recent discussion in class about how Dickens is considered to be kind of a "shameful" read, similar to Twilight, for intellectuals and English professors. Now EVERYONE will be reading Dickens!!! Oh, the joy. (I hope my sarcasm is thoroughly felt by all of you!)

Friday, December 3, 2010

Above is a video of Merzbow, AKA, God. The rest of this post is on Prurient, but I think it would piss people off to watch and listen to a video of him.

Hopefully you've watched/listened by now, so I can smile at potentially pissing your ears off.

I think something unique about noise is how undefinable it is--it isn't this, and it's not that, etc--but this clearly makes it difficult to talk about. I read many reviews and critical discussions about noise, though none of them have allowed me to see any deeper into the genre--they feel more like orbital debris than anything else. This is particularly troublesome for me because I'm trying to write a paper on noise artist Prurient for this class, and, though I think my intuitions about him are relevant to both critical theory and media consumption in general, I don't feel I'm adding anything to the essence of Prurient's body of work. I have the vocabulary to describe his sounds, but that vocabulary doesn't really serve a purpose, aside from potentially allowing me to play semantic games. As much as I rant about how important inter-disciplinary research and discussion is, doing a simple close reading of Prurient just ends up producing a long stream of bullshit jargon, which sucks.

I like the way Prurient grabs my ears and makes them reel with pain, because it pushes out thought and gives me a feeling of helplessness. This is of course a masochistic response, but I find it interesting that so many people have that same response... as if pain produces an ultimately euphoric feeling--the feeling that one is taken care of by the universe, precisely because he can't take care of himself, which, I hear, many people acquire when they assess their own lack of power in relation to the world, "religion is the opiate of the masses", blah blah. I think this is, potentially, a large part of catharsis. And this is, to me, a manifestation of manipulation, possibly even coercion--and don't we read what we read because it forces us to go somewhere, whether we want to go there or not? And does music potentially do this better than language?

Cocorosie Clip

This is the band I was telling you guys about in class the other day...I think it's important to see them doing what they do before listening to a CD of their music without any point of reference.

Without further adieu, here's a clip of them singing "Hairnet Paradise."

Thursday, December 2, 2010

When Liz posted on Monday about Celine's "That's the Way it is," I thought of Tupac Shakur's "Changes/That's Just the Way it is."

Interestingly enough (for those of you who don't know), Tupac's version is heavily drawn from an original by Bruce Hornsby. The piano sounds exactly the same. Hornsby's version talks about social ills and the importance of the Civil Rights Movement.


Tupac's version raps about the struggles of his time - cops' brutality against blacks, poverty, discrimination, etc. He also pushes for blacks to "come together," and the issues he talks about are right in touch with today.


Coincidentally, he mentions that "although it seems heaven sent, we aint ready to see a black president." He then goes on to say that jails are filled with blacks and that "some things will never change." I think he's saying that its way too idealistic to envision a black US president.

Yet today we have President Obama: who not only made US history, but also contributed to one of the greatest moments in black history along with the Civil Rights Movement.

I think I've rambled a bit, and the title includes Celine Dion. So here's her version of "That's the Way it is." To me, the tune sounds similar to the original...talks about "sticking together" and not giving up because "love will conquer it all." Clearly more cliche, and not as meaningful, but definitely some similarities..


Wednesday, December 1, 2010

Just a funny, Celine-related tidbit.