The blog of author Dennis Cooper

Gig #114: Of late 25: Les Chants du Hasard, Damien Dubrovnik, Dead Cross, Tau Cross, Shabazz Palaces, Phallus Dei, Charlemagne Palestine & Grumbling Fur Time Machine Orchestra, Bill Orcutt, Oneohtrix Point Never, Moor Mother X Mental Jewelry, Lucifer’s Ensemble, Gosheven, From Nursery to Misery


Les Chants du Hasard
Damien Dubrovnik
Dead Cross
Tau Cross
Shabazz Palaces
Phallus Dei
Charlemagne Palestine & Grumbling Fur Time Machine Orchestra
Bill Orcutt
Oneohtrix Point Never
Moor Mother X Mental Jewelry
Lucifer’s Ensemble
From Nursery to Misery


Les Chants du Hasard Chant I
‘With Les Chants du Hasard, sole member Hazard set out to unify the realms of black metal and classical music. I’m not going to pretend that I know anything about the history of 1800s orchestral music from which Hazard drew his primary inspirations1, but I do know more than a little bit about black metal, and I can safely say this LCDH nails the genre’s atmosphere. Years of listening to black metal have diluted its inherent shock value, yet this record sounds downright frightening in comparison to most releases of the style. Huge, dissonant horn swells and swirling strings are blanketed by venomous black metal croaks in richly layered soundscapes that peak and valley in melodramatic fashion. The compositions can range from hugely bombastic (“Chant I,” “Chant III”) to mystical and restrained (“Chant II,” “Chant IV”), granting LCdH a respectable and refreshing sense of track identity and variety.’ — Angry Metal Guy


Damien Dubrovnik Arrow 6
Great Many Arrows is the sixth full-length from the pairing of Loke Rahbek (AKA Croatian Amor) and Christian Stadsgaard, and their first release since 2015. The album gets its name from a historic competition in Kyoto, Japan, where archers would try to shoot as many arrows as possible over a 24-hour period. (We’re told the record-holder, in 1686, hit the target with 8,133 out of 13,053 arrows, making for an average of nine arrows loosed every minute.) It is described as a shift away from the mostly electronic sound of the collaboration’s earlier works, with six tracks that “set organs, cellos, violas, wind and other acoustic instruments against the backdrop of an electronic landscape”.’ — Resident Advisor


Dead Cross Grave Slave
‘Dead Cross emerged out of a series of impractical schemes, fallen-through plans, and last-minute musical experimentation. Shows were scheduled before a single song was written, fans were formed before even one show was played. The chaos of its creation seems apt; after all, the band is comprised entirely of artists who have thrived playing tightly-coiled turmoil—intelligent dissonance disguised as disorder. Consisting of Dave Lombardo, Justin Pearson, Michael Crain, and Mike Patton, the impressive, expansive, and eclectic list of prior bands collectively played in would be enough to ensure the unyielding ferocity of the music… but a resume isn’t necessary, here. Dead Cross stands on its own, speaks volumes with its multilayered evil-genius vocals, manic guitar riffs, and brutal rhythms.’ — Ipecac


Tau Cross Deep State
‘TAU CROSS are a veteran punk / metal collective revolving around Amebix bassist / frontman Rob Miller, Voivod drummer Michel ‘Away’ Langevin, and members of cult crust outfits Misery and War//Plague. TAU CROSS presents a unique musical approach ranging from dark folk witchery to industrial punk metal brutalism, a melting pot of Killing Joke, Black Sabbath, Pink Floyd and Joy Division with an infusion of 16th century English mysticism.’ — Relapse Records


Shabazz Palaces Shine a Light
Quazarz: Born On A Gangster Star serves as both an introduction and tells the tale of Quazarz, a sentient being from somewhere else, an observer sent here to Amurderca to chronicle and explore as a musical emissary. What he finds in our world is a cutthroat place, a landscape where someone like him could never quite feel comfortable amidst all the brutality and alternative facts and death masquerading as connectivity. The Palaceer of Shabazz Palaces says of his extraterrestrial persona: “I, Quazarz, Born On A Gangster Star, son only of Barbara Dream Caster and Reginald The Dark Hoper – he who rides on light – dreamer of the seventh dream and kissed eternal by Awet the Sun Scented – who far from home I found my same self differents in those constellies that be Dai at my weap-side immediate and all us Water Guild affiliates who revelries in the futures passed recordings and ceremonies flexing resplendent in the Paradise Sportif armor – raising these musics a joy/cry that way into these aquadescent diamondized ethers of the Migosphere here on Drake world. Welcome To Quazarz.’ — Shabazz Palaces


Phallus Dei Stigmata (feat. Merzbow)
‘Phallus Dei would translate as ‘God’s Penis’ or maybe ‘Penis of God’, a name which reminds me of the mysterious and sometimes notorious faction of the Catholic Church/Vatican known as Opus Dei or the ‘Work of God’. The title Phallus Dei clearly has both sexual and religious connotations and this is also echoed throughout the band’s aesthetics and iconography, as well as the overall sound and the feeling it evokes. While Black Dawn utilises the darkwave and industrial sounds, there is also a definite influence from drone music such as Sunn O))) which also elicits a deeply religious/spiritual feeling; a primordial feeling that can be traced back through ritual music inherent in many cultures both modern and ancient; from the Buddhists to the Babylonians, the Celts, the Nords and even back to the pre-historical tribes of the Australian Aborigines and the didgeridoo as they danced around the campfire in the moonlit desert sands.’ — Terra Relicta


Charlemagne Palestine & Grumbling Fur Time Machine Orchestra Omminnggg And Schlomming
‘The signature strumming of Palestine’s piano augmented by Tucker and O’Sullivan’s earthware electronics and processed strings create seamless sonic ripples in a constant state of unfolding. This is perhaps the most demonstrative document of Palestine’s powerful vocal delivery – an alien hybrid of sacred music drawing deep from the well of the cantorial synagogue and Hindustani classical styles in a bid to channel inter-dimensional beings from ancient cultures. In some respects this could be thought of as Charlemagne in dub as Grumbling Fur carefully twist and mangle their palette of electrified harp, viola, bowed mandolin, percussion, tapes and voice transformers through chains of loopers resulting in a slowly dilating vapour.’ — Important Records


Bill Orcutt The World Without Me
‘Orcutt’s new self-titled record is largely a departure from the desolation. It’s his first solo electric guitar album, after nearly a decade-playing his four-stringed contraption. He leans mostly on a clean guitar sound, with just the buzz of the amp as accompaniment. But the amplification does allow him a few new tricks, each of which makes the record seem a little brighter. Most of these pieces start slow, plucked lightly, but at high volume. Every creaky finger slide is teeth-chattering, like you’re listening from inside of one of his pickup’s magnetic coils. A version of “Ol Man River,” from the 1927 musical Show Boat and to which he’s nodded on another of his cover-heavy records, allows Orcutt to demonstrate a dynamic range that he was only able to wring from his guitar by brute force. Volume and texture become new dimensions to explore. He swings from bluesy ambience to dense thickets of barely-consonant notes, diving back and forth between the two with a slippery energy because of the unpredictable shimmer of his new instrument. He’s always been a great improviser, but you can hear him excitedly charting new sounds and melodic runs. There’s a sense of life to it, if only because of the variation he allows himself.’ — Colin Joyce


Oneohtrix Point Never The Pure and the Damned (feat. Iggy Pop)
‘I had a good feeling when I walked into their midtown office, which was more like a shrine to everything they loved — amongst which was a massive Akira print side by side with one of King of New York. They told me they were setting out to make a genre film. To me the Safdies are doing something really unique and yet drenched in tradition. I think of Jarmusch, Tarantino, Carax — directors whose love of the history of cinema is too strong to keep out of the filmmaking itself, but remain totally idiosyncratic anyway. We share an affection and reverence for bruised and battered stuff, and I think we both feel this urge to enshrine the history as it is now, not as it was then. On our own terms.’ — Daniel Lopatin


Moor Mother X Mental Jewelry Matter Of Time
Crime Waves is a collaboration between Philadelphia-producers Moor Mother and Mental Jewelry. The EP features six tracks recorded during a session at Philadelphia’s Kawari. The music speaks about systematic violence and racism. From a productions standpoint, these songs bridge avant-classical sounds with modern broken beat/sample based technologies and live instrumentation implemented via laptop. “Two of these tracks – “Hardware” and “Death Booming” – were meant for Fetish Bones but I couldn’t get them to sound how I wanted,” writes Moor Mother. “I really loved Mental Jewelry’s production though, so I suggested that we make an EP. We had bonded over free jazz, drum and bass, and heavy dub – we just spent hours talking about music before we even recorded a track.”‘ — Don Giovanni Records


Lucifer’s Ensemble in girum imus nocte et consumimur igni
‘LUCIFER’S ENSEMBLE is a music performance project crossing physical theatre, interactive technologies and sound art. An inverted triangle comprising two performers and a musician/composer. In their music performances they usually include guest musicians to close the circle of conceptual pieces dedicated to matters of the occult. Such matters evolve mostly around notions of Ritual, Trance and Transcendence, The Night, The Morning Star and The Angel of Light, The Fool’s Journey and The Wishful Fall……’. — LE


Gosheven Well Tuned Dreams
‘On his debut release on Opal Tapes, Gosheven is trying to detach from the substantially distorted and unwholesome male ideal that he has been absorbing since he was born. This record is an important stage of this “caterpillar turning into butterfly” metamorphosis. To match this joyful occasion, instead of the artfully constructed but fundamentally out-of-tune Western tuning, he used – among others – the long time forgotten just intonation (pure tuning) throughout the record. For this, he developed a special electric guitar whose strings can be placed in the stereo field to enrich even more the already unusual sounding of the retuned guitar. By using just intonation and other exotic tunings it was possible to make the whole material more emotional, more intimate and last but not least slower (western music is fast because it is not in tune – rumour says this was told by the legendary La Monte Young).’ — Opal Tapes


From Nursery To Misery The Oak Tree
‘From Nursery to Misery were three teenagers who grew up together on the same street in Basildon, Essex. Formed in 1987, the band was comprised of vocalists (and identical twins) Gina and Tina Fear, along with keyboard player and producer Lee Stevens. Lee invited the twins to over to record some music with him, suggesting they try singing over some instrumentals he had written and recorded on a newly purchased 4-track. They played a sum total of four gigs before splitting in 1991. Their recorded output, however, was relatively prodigious, with the band appearing on over 22 compilations, as well as self-releasing two album-length tapes ‘The Oak Tree’ (1989), and ‘Equilibrium’ (1990), and a split EP with Germany’s Nostalgie Eternelle, ‘Art is the Tool’ (1990). All these releases were home-produced, hand-made cassettes distributed and swapped via the Mail Art scene.’ — Dark Entries




p.s. Hey. ** Mieze, Mieze! I’m so happy Udo lured you inside. How are you? Bunches of love, Dennis. ** Wolf, Mega-human! Yeah, I think ‘My Son, My Son’ is one of the rare recent Herzog fiction films that’s actually really good. Mm, things have happened with Arte but I’m under a gag order re: that at the moment. Soon. I’ll tell you in Paris, if not before. Speaking of, … hooray! I’ll be here and rarin’ to hang and everything else! My calendar has wolf bait emoticons plastered on the announced dates. Kiddie’s good. Prepping for a new film. Busy with his kiddo. No doubt you can see for yourself ere long. Another hooray! ** David Ehrenstein, That doesn’t surprise me. I only saw/ran into Udo once in person at a video store in Silverlake years ago, and he was throwing a prima donna snit fit at the check-out guy, charmingly, of course. ** Dóra Grőber, Hi! I hope the zombie RIPs. I slept slightly better last night but not well enough. I seem to sleep sort of crappily when we’re working on the film. I think it’s excitement-related stress or something. Exciting, exciting about your three readers. Yes, it’s stressful waiting to hear, no way around that. Let me know what they say when they say it. That’s so great! Wtf about that coffee shop owner! How weird. Well, you probably dodged a bullet, as they say. Was that the only real job possibility in your immediate surroundings? My day was good. All color grading, as predicted. I think we’ve found the look we’re going for, and now we’re meticulously making each scene conform to that look more or less. So, success in the making, I hope. I didn’t do anything really otherwise than eat and catch up on stuff and head to bed. What happened to you today? ** Steevee, Hi. Tentatively good news on your end. Trying to reach beyond the usual film buff crowd will be a challenge, of sure, but how interesting and exciting even to figure out how to do that. Of course I would like to know the details on your plans, but I’m very patient. Yeah, being (too) busy doing the thing you like/love is always something to be careful complaining about. I’m in that boat too. ** Bill, Hi, Bill! Ha ha, ‘Der Adler’, yes. ‘FPoR’ has been digitally restored? Interesting. Is it on DVD, or is it on the (very) speciality theater circuit? Harvey Mudd, right, that makes sense. What are you doing there exactly? Can you say? ** Misanthrope, What’s the difference between your former diet and your new one? Call that fucking doctor, yes! What an asshole. Pin that mother down. ** S., Ha ha, that sentence should probably be on Udo’s gravestone or urn or whatever. This movie … our new one? Uh, it’s about a bunch of stuff but the central through-line is a young guy who gets obsessed with the idea of disappearing and ends up deciding to explode himself. Sounds like a weekend. Yours, I mean. Obviously. ** Armando, Hey. Actually, our post-production time is quite short, relatively speaking. I just said I don’t remember what Niblett sounds like. I am neither unenthusiastic nor enthusiastic until I do. I really like humans. Not every single one of them, but as a general rule, yeah. It sounds like my country, if you’re still there, isn’t doing great things for your mood. I hope that changes. ** Okay. What’s today … oh, a gig. Another one of those gigs of stuff I’ve been listening to and liking and that I think maybe could be a benefit to your current listening experiences possibly. Or possibly not? Anyway, that’s the post. See you tomorrow.


  1. Good morning, Dennis!
    Sorry I missed saying hi yesterday, but it was too busy a day. I was going to say that my boss/writing-partner/bane-of-my-life, Jonathan, produced a couple of movies way back, one of which starred Udo Kier. He’s quite reticent about talking about it, for some reason, but when I saw UK was in it I said, ‘Isn’t he a bit of a legend?’ and Jonathan tersely grumbled, ‘Well, he certainly thinks he is.’ I must see if I can get more out of him.
    How’s the color-grading? You’ve got your look? I think I’m going to see if there are any decent colour-grading tutorials on Youtube as I’m still intrigued by the process. It sounds painstaking. I get you about garishly coloured movies, but I’m the opposite. I’ll gladly watch something pretty much because it’s brightly coloured. You know the colour in 60s and 70s superhero comics? That’s pretty much heaven to me.
    I like that Moor Mother X Mental Jewelry track up above. I’m in a funny mood with music atm, tbh. Nothing’s quite hitting the mark.
    Hope you’re all good.
    Tintin realising that he’s been wrong about everything ever love,

  2. hey,

    sorry 4 a moment i thought it was a long postpro process 4 a small indie movie.

    so, what camera or cameras did u use.

    yeah, had the worst evenin yesterday. just fucking horrible & awful. uh fuck it.

    c ya.

  3. Which Bavas have you never heard of?

    • They’re not horror films, mostly other types of genre films. There’s a spaghetti Western and a peplum. They’re probably fairly minor films, but I like his work enough that I’m very curious about them.

  4. As I trust I’ve mentioned previously, Charlemagne Palestine was a classmate of mine at Communist Martyrs High. What a character! He’s the fist”emancipated” person I’ve ever known. Very nice but with a mind going a mile a minute in a million directions quite “hard to know.”

  5. Really enjoyed that Damien Dubrovnik track. Very into what Charlemagne Palestine is up to, as ever. And oh wow what a find that From Nursery To Misery is! The Dark Entries label is really spoiling us with their reissuing programme.

    This very morning the postman brought along a great mix by DJ Stingray. He’s the former Drexciya tour DJ and as you might expect, it’s fierce electro with virtuoso delivery. There’s a Resident Advisor review here if you’re interested.

    May be of interest – NTS has former Gig favourite Carla Dal Forno as guest for this monthly podcast, with what’s billed as “inspirations ranging from minimal synth to folk and art rock…”

  6. I love the track by Les Chants du Hasard. I looked them up on iTunes, and nothing is available. Do you know where I can download their music? Should I try Bandcamp? (It would actually be helpful when you do these days if you indicated album release dates and download sources.)

  7. Greetings from SF airport. Lots of exciting entries in the gig, but will have to wait till I get somewhere more secluded to enjoy. Hope the film work is going smoothly.

    I’ll be at Harvey Mudd for a little conference. Mostly observing and taking notes.

    The FPoR copy I saw is 4k, in a relatively small theater. Not sure how exactly they’re distributing it. I’ll finally get to see Personal Shopper the day I get back from LA; really looking forward to it.


  8. Hey Dennis!

    Thanks for the post–always a pleasure to dive into your gig pieces. So far the Charlemagne Palestine, Bill Orcutt, and Shabazz tracks seem to be my speed…that Orcutt track is gorgeous stuff. Looking forward to delving deeper with those tracks. One advantage of life in the Southwest is that it does seem to allow more free time to really dig into the things that I find interesting.

    Speaking of, I managed to make a pilgrimage out to Double Negative on the tail end of a road trip this last week! It was both easier and more difficult to find than I had imagined, if that makes sense. Overall a thoroughly enjoyable experience! Transcendent, even. I remember you telling me that you had made a trip out that way when Heizer cancelled a visit to City on you last minute. Did you make it to any of the other works?

    Last time we talked you asked what was new. It seems like I haven’t mentioned that I’m organizing my Burningman Village this year? That is taking up most of my creative time but it’s a very rewarding experience so far. We have 115 folks coming and are producing a cabaret night, a full working bar, and a 30 ft. tall structure made out of 500,000 ft. worth of rope which will be assembled in the form of thousands of Shibari Knots (Japanese bondage knots just in case you aren’t familiar…maybe after the Burn this year I’ll write a little guest piece on that subject.)

    Final update: finally got started on Infinite Jest and feeling like the book really cracked open for me about 80 pages in. Seems that it will make for great summer reading. I’ve also read a little Klosterman on the recommendation of my brother, specifically Killing Yourself to Live and Downtown Owl. Do you have thoughts on his work? The ending of Downtown Owl was a slap in the face in all the right ways.

    Lots of love,

  9. i have to admit when i first heard about the storyline for the new film i was jealous. “that Dennis is one smart cookie.” i still think of the george carlin skit where he talks about how stupid terrorists are ” set yourself on fire!” it seems so freudian to me. talking with a freudian philosopher friend one time i asked but freud did posit a death drive he responded yes but he later abandoned it. i think of the return but also of the transgress of the pleasure principle as observed in bulemics. a drunken boy i slept with recently was singing my praises as a top come to think of it it was quite an explosion! “what if i stood up and i walked away” tres ppsyched. D&Z productions is boss! writing a story of the sea realizing there is no standard character set like a western. gonna check some of these tunes. guess who writes best to death metal lol

    the droans and moans
    he hoans his sights
    with all necessary frights
    called to grind their bones
    for davy jones

  10. chris dankland

    July 13, 2017 at 11:56 pm

    have u read any of 17776 Football? it’s an online ebook — anyway if u haven’t checked it out already i super recommend it, i think it’s terrific


    i feel so excited by it because it’s such a great example of what digital literature can do — how many more options it gives writers. it’s so cool to think about !! it’s like introducing electronic instruments and sounds to music. that’s part of why i love your gif works so much, it’s thrilling to see things that have never existed in human history before.

    we’re surrounded by so many things like that, and it’s so easy to take it for granted. like future shock or something.

    reading all these old books lately has reminded me of how the physical mediums of literature have been evolving, from clay tablets to scrolls to hand-bound books to the printing press to digital books. some writers are kind of dumb about things like that, they act like novels and short stories and free verse poems are the only type of things that literature has ever and will ever produce, but literature changes drastically every hundred or couple hundred years. it’s really cool to be alive on the cusp of one of those types of changes. it’s like books have the option to shed themselves of all physicality so they can float and mutate and zip around the world through the internet ether. it goes way beyond a modern or post-modern type of stylistic change, it’s a changing of the dna of literature

    anyway i’ve only read like half of it so far, and i’ve probably built it up too much — i think it’s just that it does a particularly good job of being an ebook, it doesn’t do anything that i haven’t seen before, it just does it better.

    anyway it’s a pretty interesting book to me & i thought u would enjoy it, if u haven’t seen it already.


    this crop of songs all really appeal to me a lot — i’ve been looking for some more black metal-ish stuff so i’m grateful for those shout outs, and i especially like the shabazz palaces and gorsheven

    those bill orcutt and lucifer ensemble music videos are great !!

    i’m gonna take some time to check out all these albums, thanks

    the way iggy pop sings in that song is very moving to me for some reason

    hope ur having a good morning !! take care

    • chris dankland

      July 14, 2017 at 1:04 am

      the lyric “the pure always act from love / the damned always act from love” from that ONP song is blowing my mind right now. i listened to it again, i wasn’t really listening to the lyrics the first time. it just made me realize like a very deep level previously unrealized secret about what this whole book i’ve revising is about. i’m reading all these extra things into it, but. that’s crazy. do u know what i mean, that feeling? like u spend a long time in a book not quite knowing why u are writing it & then in a sudden epiphanic sort of way u realize, that’s weird. anyway i think that line is very beautiful, thanks for sharing that song

  11. Amphibiouspeter

    July 13, 2017 at 11:58 pm

    Hey DC,

    This stuff looks great, listened to a couple and look forward to making my way through the rest. Did you see Shilpa Ray released a new single two days ago?

    Ha! The last two days ‘airborne torture device’ seems like an apt desciption. I feel like voldemort in the first harry potter when harry touches his face and he turns to stone then crumbles. The images you get of LA are basically the rich and famous/that surf rock thing. What’s it actually like to be from there?

    I started reading Nog and got distracted and read some Foucault. Time to get back to Nog. I also know how that sentence sounds.

    I actually today in the cafe decided that my play was done. It’s finished. I stuck it on a blog because I wasn’t really sure what to do with it. It’s a strange feeling, kind of like a close friend has left town.

    Ah yeah, I remember when I was studying all the film students slaving over stuff like that. Sounds like it should be simple right but it’s so technical it just takes ages. I did a little electroacoustic composition and had that feeling, this is so slow and technical how do I even express myself?!?

    Take care of yourself,


  12. MAUDIE is a really mediocre film I only saw because someone assigned me to review it. If I didn’t tell you that, I think you could guess it from the following review: http://www.nashvillescene.com/arts-culture/film/article/20867132/biopic-maudie-has-its-moments-but-is-ultimately-unconvincing

  13. Dennis, Well, my main differences now are that I’ve stopped taking the potassium supplement I was taking, I’ve cut back drastically on protein shakes, and very soon I’ll be stopping the creatine (an OTC supplement that actually works for working out/athletic performance). As far as diet, I’ll probably be switching the vegetables I eat. I usually eat a sweet potato everything; they’re awesome nutritionally and don’t spike your insulin the way the white ones do, but they’re chock full of potassium, which is not nice to one’s kidneys.

    Oh, and I’m also adding more nuts and fibrous things to my diet, partly to make up for some of the protein I’m losing by taking out the protein drinks and partly to aid digestion, as well as get some good fats in me to combat inflammation.

    So just those things.

    I think I might try doing some juicing too, things like beets and whatnot, which are really good for your circulatory system and your organs.

    Ha, I forgot to contact the doctor again today. I get busy at work and just forget. I can be a real dolt sometimes. 😛

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