The blog of author Dennis Cooper

Gig #136: John Cale Chronological (1968 – 1980)





At About This Time Mozart Was Dead And Joseph Conrad Was Sailing The Seven Seas Learning English Pt.1 (1968)
‘Tony Conrad had introduced the “bouncing screwdriver handle” guitar technique used by John Cale in his and Sterling Morrison’s performance of Cale’s piece “At about this time Mozart was dead and Joseph Conrad was sailing the seven seas learning English”. This piece uses overdubbing in which the instant pause control, which was a feature of the Woolensak tape recorder, was used to “scratch” on a reel-to-reel tape.’ — Oliver Landemaine


Wall (1970)
‘The only piece on John Cale’s first post-VU album Vintage Violence that’s remotely avant-garde is the bonus track ‘Wall’, six awesome minutes of electric viola scraping. In contrast, a lot of Vintage Violence is plain gorgeous and inherently musical; it just doesn’t feel as significant as Cale’s best work, even if it’s surprisingly hooky and accessible. It showcases a light and playful side of Cale that would become more and more submerged as his recorded oeuvre became darker and more demanding.’ — Fyfeopedia


w/ Terry Riley Church of Anthrax (1971)
‘A one-time-only collaboration between former Velvet Underground co-founder John Cale and minimalist composer Terry Riley, 1971’s Church of Anthrax doesn’t sound too much like the solo work of either. Around this time, Riley’s works were along the lines of “A Rainbow in Curved Air” or “Poppy Nogood and the Phantom Band”: pattern music with an obsessive attention to repetition and tricks with an analogue delay machine that gave his music a refractory, almost hallucinogenic quality. Though Cale was trained in a similar aesthetic (he played with La Monte Young, surely the most minimal of all minimalist composers), he had largely left it behind by 1971, and so Church of Anthrax mixes Riley’s drones and patterns with a more muscular and melodic bent versed in both free jazz and experimental rock.’ — Allmusic


w/ Terry Riley The Hall of Mirrors in the Palace at Versailles (1971)
‘Not quite modern classical music, but not at all rock & roll either, Church of Anthrax sounds in retrospect like it was a huge influence on later post-minimalist composers like Andrew Poppy, Wim Mertens, and Michael Nyman, who mix similar doses of minimalism, rock, and jazz. On its own merits, the album is always interesting, and the centerpiece “The Hall of Mirrors in the Palace at Versailles” is probably the point where Riley and Cale approach each other on the most equal footing. The low point is Cale’s solo writing credit, “The Soul of Patrick Lee,” a slight vocal interlude by Adam Miller that feels out of place in these surroundings.’ — collaged


Temper (1972)
‘”Temper”, an outtake from the recording sessions for his album Academy in Peril, was later released on the promotional compilation Troublemakers. It was also released on the Seducing Down The Door compilation.’ — collaged


Days of Steam (1972)
‘Largely instrumental, Cale’s second record is an exploration of his classical training with bits of the VU drone and prog rock widening the borders. Opener “The Philosopher” features Ron Wood on slide guitar and bumps along similarly to the title cut from Can’s Future Days, while the rest of the album consists of the sort of conceptual strangeness Cale is known for (“Legs Larry at Television Centre” is a viola and cello piece with a voice directing imaginary cameras). There is more Can to be heard on “King Harry,” but fans of somber piano pieces will likely get the most out of this.’ — Rhapsody


King Harry (1972)
‘The former Velvet Underground keyboardist and viola player’s third solo album was originally released in 1972 also happened to be his debut on Reprise Records. Cale created a predominantly instrumental album, with “King Harry” the only piece having any formal lyrics. Contributors included Ron Wood on guitar, Del Newman on drums (who would later do orchestral arrangements for Elton John) and “Legs” Larry Smith of The Bonzo Dog Band.’ — collaged


a) Faust b) The Balance c) Capt. Morgans Lament (1972)
‘When things are more quick in mood, as in “Faust,” one of “3 Orchestral Pieces,” one of the Philharmonic guest numbers, Cale has good fun applying rock arrangement and production tricks: compression, gentle flanging, drum rhythms, and so forth.’ — Allmusic


Paris 1919 (1973; live @ Paradiso, Amsterdam 2009)
Paris 1919 is an album by Welsh musician John Cale. It was produced by Chris Thomas and features a backing band consisting largely of members of Little Feat. Paris 1919 is made up of songs with arcane and complex lyrics; musically, the album is a shift from his previous works with composer Terry Riley and his avant-garde experiments with La Monte Young towards a more baroque sound. It is the most accessible and traditional of Cale’s albums, and the most well-known of his work as a solo artist. The album was released in March 1973 by Reprise Records to warm critical reception. The Los Angeles Times called Paris 1919 “the idiosyncratic pinnacle to Cale’s thrilling yet perverse career, despite the fact it never topped the charts.”‘ — Wiki


Antarctica Starts Here (1973)
‘It’s the subtle change of the bass notes that does it in this one: chords are repeated, but with different bass notes, giving the song its clustered and subtly shifting feeling. Chord symbols are repeated if it’s a whole bar, noted once if it’s half a bar (so two beats per symbol). If half a bar contains two chords, there’s a “-” between them. Just prior to the instrumental break you’ve got this sublime chord (C9-C11), which really lifts the whole thing up!’ — Tabs


The Man Who Couldn’t Afford to Orgy (1974)
‘Right from the start, Cale makes it clear he’s not messing around on Fear. If his solo career before then had been a series of intriguing stylistic experiments, here he meshes it with an ear for his own brand of pop and rock, accessible while still clearly being himself through and through. Getting musical support from various Roxy Music veterans like Brian Eno, Phil Manzanera, and Andy Mackay didn’t hurt at all, and all the assorted performers do a great job carrying out Cale’s vision.’ — Ned Raggett


Gun (1974)
‘Cale’s own bent for trying things out isn’t forgotten on the album, with his voice recorded in different ways (sometimes with hollow echo, other times much more direct) and musically touching on everything from early reggae to, on “The Man Who Couldn’t Afford to Orgy,” a delightful Beach Boys pastiche. As for sheer intensity, little can top “Gun,” the equal of Eno’s own burning blast “Third Uncle” when it comes to lengthy, focused obsession translated into music and lyrics.’ — Allmusic


Mr. Wilson (1975)
‘The lead track of ‘Slow Dazzle’ is “Mr. Wilson,” a partly-ironic and partly-sincere tribute to Brian Wilson. (And also, I’ve heard, Harold Wilson, but I dunno about that.) It’s a very light song with an acid center, which makes it hard to interpret. If I had to try, I’d say that Cale is identifying with Wilson (“Take your mixes, not your mixture/Add some music to our day”, “Whisper whisper, got a monkey on my back”) and that it quite scares him. Though that probably fits his future career trajectory too closely to be true. This has an interesting form: two times verse + chorus, a middle eight + chorus, and a coda. I should note: in the coda, despite the ironic and mysterious lyric “California wine tastes fine,” all musical irony drops out and only a frankly affecting string part and vocal harmonies are left.’ — Fragments of a Cale Season


Taking It All Away (1975; live @ Zeche Bochum 1983)
‘Oh, you sentimental fool / Yes, you sentimental fool / Love – those broken veins / Made you so afraid / Of that wishful wishing well // Well, now, you’re in misery and in pain / Well, now, you’re in misery and in pain / So she broke your heart / And you let her die / Well, that’s your name and that’s the game // ‘Cause they’re taking it all away / They’re taking it all away / They’re taking it all away … ‘ — JC


Guts (1975)
‘“Guts” opens with the line, “The bugger in the short sleeves fucked my wife”. This refers to Kevin Ayers sleeping with Cale’s wife before the June 1, 1974 concert, as John Cale related in his autobiography, with Victor Bockris, What’s Welsh for Zen (1998).’ — Lastfm


My Maria (1975)
‘John Cale is a genius. Period. And on no albums was his genius-ness more prominent and seminal than on “Paris 1919” and the Island trilogy – “Fear”, “Slow Dazzle”, and “Helen of Troy”, released in the early to mid 70s. Most people have a tendency to site “Fear” as their favorite of the Island trilogy, but “Helen of Troy” has always been mine. The album starts off with “My Maria”, a hauntingly melodic song that manages to harness in both a spine-tinglingly beautiful chorus *and* some of guitarist Chris Spedding’s gnarliest guitar shredding ever committed to vinyl. It’s also got this awesome marimba thing during the verses.’ — LypoSuck


Engine (1975)
‘Cale had just finished producing Patti Smith’s “Horses” and was in progress of touring when Island released “Helen of Troy” out from under him, without his knowledge, and in an unfinished state of pre-production. Cale once said that Island ‘released what amounted to demo tapes’ on the final “Helen of Troy”: indicating that the problematic elements in question were probably “Engine,” “Save Us” and most of side two.’ — Head Heritage


Leaving It Up to You (1975)
Paris 1919 was followed by a trilogy of albums recorded on the Island label, which saw him collaborate with Brian Eno among others. During this period his live show became increasingly aggressive, until one day he slaughtered a chicken mid-performance causing his band to walk off stage in disgust. For most of his career Cale has used the piano as his primary instrument, but on the island LPs he was not averse to rocking out, or indeed freaking out with a guitar while snarling about Sharon Tate.’ — Sabotage Times


Chickenshit (1977)
‘On April 24, 1977, during his twisted rendition of “Heartbreak Hotel” in Croydon, England, John Cale brandished a meat cleaver in one hand and a chicken in the other (which, unbeknownst to those attending, was already dead). As the punk kids in attendance moshed and slammed at the foot of the stage, Cale placed the chicken on the floor, knelt down and swiftly hacked off its head. As he whipped the severed remnants into the audience, everyone, including the other band members, stared in bemusement. The vegetarian rhythm section of Mike Visceglia and Joe Stefko, who backstage had interrogated Cale on his plans for the bird, promptly walked off. Throughout the years, Cale struggled with depression and drug use. By the time the “chicken incident” occurred, he was in the midst of a heavy cocaine addiction, which plagued him with paranoia and borderline psychosis. As his decisions became more irrational, his music increasingly grew angrier. In response to his band members’ departure, Cale quickly recorded the three-song Animal Justice EP, featuring “Chickenshit,” a sarcastic retelling of the events.’ — Magnet Magazine


Dr. Mudd (1979)
‘On “Dr. Mudd,” the fear reaches its high point, though it might not sound like it. Over jittery rhythm guitar, female singer Deerfrance adds carefree “doo-doo-doo” backup vocals, although the lyrics are anything but. With the repeated cries of “Whatcha gonna do?” Cale strains his voice describing the atomic bombings of Hiroshima and Nagasaki. He reminds us that although America may not be forced to relive the events every day, the people of Japan are frequently burdened, cursed to “remember when the children’s hair fell out, and all their skin turned blue.” Cale then asks us to put ourselves in their shoes, quizzing our elected officials what will happen when “China drops a bomb on you.” It’s a catchy new-wave masterpiece, though no fun for those that listen close.’ — Magnet Magazine


Sabotage (1979)
”The music scene was changing rapidly, but the world climate was changing as well. Cale’s next batch of songs would seemingly draw a comparison between the two; as many punks used their music and performances to display their sometimes violent, misplaced attitudes, America nervously watched the U.S.S.R. in the throes of the nuclear arms race, with the height of the Cold War right around the corner. Recorded over four nights in April ’79 at CBGB, Sabotage/Live dealt with these threats head on. In Cale’s autobiography, What’s Welsh For Zen?, he explains, “Sabotage was a response to the militarism that was in the air around then. When I released the controversial track ‘Ready For War’ as a single, I should have said to the audience, ‘We have an induction room backstage. Let’s see you come back and enlist. You wouldn’t have seen one of them—people who had just been stamping their feet and yelling, ‘Yeah, right on!’ Though of course if you stole a hubcap off one of them, you’d probably hear from him.”’ — collaged


Rosegarden Funeral of Sores (1980)
‘This was a strange little single release by the major label (A&M;) affiliated IRS Records. The B-side is probably more famous for Bauhaus’s cover version. And while researching this release online I found a comment as to how their version is much better. I like the Bauhaus version OK, but this is great, too. On the record’s label there is a disclaimer: “Vocal distortion intended”, haha. Also strange, these songs seem to have never been released elsewhere. I checked all the Cale albums from the time, as well as the various “Best Ofs” that have come out. Nada anywhere…’ — Pessimist Club




p.s. Hey. ** JM, Hey, Josiah! I want to see images. Is this the amazing sounding project you briefly described a bit ago? Anyway, images when the time comes please. Whoa, fantastic about the McElroy. That’s huge news. Whoa. Hoping your friend gets a little something or other from my thing. Take care. I hope the new project is a giant hit whatever that entails. ** dooflow, Hi! What a rare and great pleasure! I’m going to get on the Wheeler Winston Dixon hunt this weekend. ‘The Taiga Syndrome’ is great, right? I think I read that last year. Really, thanks for coming in. It’s a boon. ** ET, Thank you, my pleasure. Oh, shoot, yes, yes, I’m so sorry for the non-reactiveness. I’m slow at the best of times, and between the release of the film and other projects and personal stuff I’ve been really swamped upstairs and downstairs in the last months, so it’s just forgetfulness and a sold-out brain. I’ll go find your email and write to you. Again, I’m so sorry for the silence. Thank you! ** David Ehrenstein, No, the Foucault book is centered around him talking acid in Death Valley. Thank you kindly about PGL. I haven’t seen the Ferrara ‘Pasolini’, but I quite want to. I generally like his films. ** Sypha, The shout out was a no brainer, man. WHITE by BEE? What in the world is that? Oh, wait, duh. Nevermind. I heard a bit of the Madonna, and I thought it seemed actually kind of surprising and interesting. But I’ve only heard a squib. ** Steve Erickson, Thank you for the lists. I’ll find the things I don’t know and test them. Oh, and thanks a lot for the link to the new Ken Jacobs. I didn’t know anything about that. Great! ** Tosh Berman, Thanks, bud, and, mostly, thanks for your great, great book! ** Steve Finbow, Hi, Steve, How nice to see you! Oh, well, thank you. The book is crazy awesome. Take good care. ** rewritedept, Hi, Chris, old pal. Of course I’m happy that the GbV is on your list. Earth bores my pants off. Gisele loves them though. Thank you about Kevin. Yeah, I’m still pretty wiped out by that loss, as so many people are. Thank you and love. ** KeatageCheese, I like water parks, but I almost never go to them for no good reason. Yeah, it’s hood-like. I guess that was the point, to do it there out of solidarity or something and see what happened. I want to see the new ‘Child’s Play’ for sure and the new ‘John Wick’ for absolutely sure. I hope the git hugged you like a long lost something or other. ** _Black_Acrylic, Hi, Ben. Yeah, I need to get that Meg McCarville. I keep meaning to. Thank you for including PGL. I saw a pic you shared on FB of some pages of the new The Call, and, man, it looks really delicious! The colors thing is amazing, for one thing. ** Corey Heiferman, Hi. Cool that your vid is in the bag. And I can watch it? I will this weekend. Whoa, exciting! And thanks for linking up to the backstories. Oh, yeah, I often check out e-flux. I think I link to things of theirs in posts here quite a bit. I’ll check out the piece you especially like. And Jeanines. Thanks as ever for your generosity, and have a swell weekend. ** cal, Hi, C! The Inter Arma is kind of a grower. I love that Ryan’s work is so divisive amongst film/video people. In his case, it seems like a big strength. Oh, yeah, I like that Rhye record. I spaced on it. I want to see ‘Godzilla’, but I think it’ll have to be on a plane at this point. But I love watching giant movies on teeny plane screens with shitty headphones. I don’t know why. Don’t break your back or anything in the warehouse. Always great to chat with you too, big time. ** Bill, Hi, B. Well, of course there are a bunch of things on your lists that I don’t know, and I just took a quick break to scribble — by hand, I’m old fashioned — down those titles so I can be enriched. Thank you. And thanks for listing PGL! ** KK, Hi, KK. Welcome! I know or rather have heard something about Jean-Baptiste Del Amo’s ‘Animalia’, but I haven’t gotten it. I definitely will ASAP. Thanks a bunch for the tip, and a sweet weekend to you too! ** Damien Ark, Hey, Damien! Great to see you! People don’t like that Basinski? Huh. Nope, I still haven’t heard the Beth Gibbons symphony thing for no logical reason. I will. Love and peace back to you in spades. ** Paul Curran, Is it solstice? Oh, God. Fucking summer. Yeah, in the two pix I saw, the house literally looked it was in the middle of rural nowhere. I want to check out Setagaya next time I’m there. You want to give me (and Zac) a tour? Well, of course I would be utterly thrilled if you want to make a post about that. That would be hugely stellar. Thank you for the offer! You have a fantastic and beyond weekend. ** TJ Wood, Hi, welcome. Mike Corrao, don’t know him, … okay, I will definitely check ‘Gut Text’ out. Thank you. ** James, Solstice, meh, but thank you anyway. Well, of course about ‘HG’. I have good taste, sir. I’ll look into those non-fiction books I don’t know. I’m spending a fair amount of time thinking about the novel, which is what I need to do before re-tackling it, but I haven’t dug in yet, no. Soon, I hope. Much love back to you and yours. ** Okay. I fell down a Cale-Hole the other day, and I decided to make a gig out if it. That’s your local weekend should you decide to accept the assignment. See you on Monday.


  1. I admire Lou Reed, but I LOVE John Cale!

    Here’s but ONE reason why

    Here’s another.

    And on a semi-related matter It’s Judy’s Birthday

    MY BIG SALE is still in progress. Drop on by. I’ll be in save for Sunday night when I’m going to see Wheeler Dixon at the American Cinematheque

  2. Hi!!

    I’m late again. I am terribly sorry for your loss. All words sound useless and too small at a time of tragedy.

    I’m going back a little, to yesterday’s post, to say a huge and never-dying thank you for including SCAB in your list once again! Thank you so, so much!
    Here are some things that weren’t necessarily born in 2019 but that entered my life this year so I consider them 2019 discoveries at least:
    Movies/Series: Single White Female (Barbet Schroeder, 1992), Disconnect (Henry Alex Rubin, 2012), Euphoria (HBO TV series, Sam Levinson, 2019), Werq the World (TV series, 2019)
    Books: Inside the Castle (Josiah Morgan, 2019 – I’m joining you on this one), The Pale King (David Foster Wallace, 2011), 300,000,000 (Blake Butler, 2014), Autobiography (Morrissey, 2011)
    Art: Slava Mogutin
    Net: miserytourism.com, sludgelit.com, x-r-a-y.com (another match)

    Thank you for the nice words and the encouragement re: our collaboration with Chicks on Speed! We’re planning this performance where my friend and I wear one … uh, kind of whole body suit thing (? – it won’t cover our heads) which is elastic enough to let us get away from each other then to bounce back while generating and distorting sounds with our movements and speech/voice. … I guess it’s a little bit hard to picture based on this description, I’ll try and specify it more as it crystallizes, haha.

    Are there any news about the TV series? I just realized it’s been ages since we talked about it! And, of course, how are you? What are you currently working on?

    Have a great, great, great weekend!!

  3. I used the song “Church of Anthrax” in my “XYschaton” story for that DROWNING IN BEAUTY anthology a few years ago. And I’m thinking of using the Siouxsie & the Banshees’ cover of “Gun” for a future project. Actually, now that I think about it, I used the Bauhaus cover of “Rosegarden Funeral of Sores” for one of the old handwritten books I wrote in college, way back in 1999.

    I think the new Madonna album was trying too hard to be “weird” and it just struck me as very self-conscious and forced. I will say that the one track I really liked off it was “Dark Ballet,” which halfway through goes into an electronic version of a song from the Nutcracker Suite, complete with vocoderized vocals… the effect is eerily like Wendy Carlos and it’s the one strange moment on the record that really worked for me. Too much of the album was of the reggaeton style, which gave me 2006 flashbacks… way too many guest stars as well, and maybe I’m just getting old but I miss the days when I at least recognized who her guest stars were… never heard of any of these new people.

    Anyway last night I was listening to THE SWEET PRIMEROSES album by Shirley Collins (which was reissued this year) on headphones while reading PRINCE ZALESKI. I think it’s safe to say that I was probably the only person in Rhode island listening to that album and reading that book at that moment, ha ha.

  4. Dennis, John Cale. Never got into him. Not because I heard something and didn’t like it. Just has never gotten on my radar. I’ll have to fix that.

    I got Negrophobia in the mail Friday. I’ll read that after I’m finished with this third Alexander novel by Mary Renault. I’m almost finished. Man, we think politics and shit these days are crazy…people back in the day were completely savage in every meaning of the word. What’s really interesting about the novel -and it’s probably her best of the three- is that, though Alexander is dead, he’s still the main character. He haunts -almost literally- everything that goes on after he dies. She does a really good job with this one.

    Also got my replacement copies of The Marbled Swarm and McCarthy’s The Road, along with a few others, including James O’Neill’s At Swim, Two Boys. I’m curious about that one, though I suspect it’s going to be something…I don’t know, quite sappy at times? Also got the Blu-ray of PGL. (And a couple McEwan books I haven’t read yet.)

    Tonight, I’m going out with my friend Karen. We’re going to eat somewhere and then go back to her place to watch Handsome Devil. There’s really nothing in the theaters around here, and I’ve been wanting to watch that sap-fest for a while. I need the sap sometimes, you know? It can’t all be doom and gloom stuff all the time. We’ll have a good time, even if the movie sucks.

  5. Back in 2005 I named an installation of black heart-shaped confetti ‘Rosegarden Funeral of Sores’ after the JC song. Even though I’m full of admiration for so many of his projects, I’m still don’t know nearly enough about what he was up to in this time period. So this Gig is a most useful resource, thank you!

    I somehow forgot to add this book to my 2019 faves, and it might just be my best of the year:

    David Keenan – For The Good Times (Faber & Faber)

  6. My music list seems very pop-oriented (or at least song-oriented) compared to yours. I heard the Black Midi album for the first time yesterday, and maybe I should’ve included it: they’re taking post-punk and math-rock into new territory. Polo G is one of the few interesting new mainstream hip-hop artists – his song “Pop Out” is a huge hit in the US due to Fortnite-based memes using it, but he has a pained, anxiety-driven half-sung flow and great taste in minor-key melodies that makes his lyrics about self-medication and guilt over witnessing and committing violence more powerful than they might be on paper.

    I find the new Madonna album interesting and more successful than her last few, but it’d be better without the lyrics’ lame attempts at social commentary and her genre-hopping works more when she sticks to Latin music than trap and EDM.

    I prefer Cale’s solo work to Lou Reed’s. I saw him perform PARIS 1919 in its entirety in Central Park, playing piano backed by a string quartet and percussionist. It was one of the best concerts I’ve ever attended. I’ve seen him live 3 other times, always with a rock band and playing his noisier material. I’d say MUSIC FOR A NEW SOCIETY is his last masterpiece. It has a stark, numb quality that’s as chilling as the more violent lyrics of his Island albums.

  7. Dennis,
    i finally have a good way to get into Cale, thanks to you.
    the best kind of albums always take a few run thrus to get into them. a lot of things that come to be important to me artistically i start out despising, then fall in love with. I was fuming the first tiome i read MY LOOSE THREAD now it haunts me everywhere, in a good way lol. Same with Trecartin, it happened in the span of just one of his films.
    Tottally get the appeal of watching big spectacles on little screens. for me it’s classic horror movies on vhs tape, more fucked up the quality the better.
    if i do break my back ill be sure to A Voice Through a Cloud it


  8. Hi D.,

    I’ve never listened to John Cale solo before. I should look into him. Every artist borne from the turbulent 60s seems so exciting. Seemingly the new artists showing up all the time are exciting too.

    Yes, it’s the exciting-sounding project that photos will come through for – probably next week, I’ll let you know here as well 🙂 it looks gorgeous. The show begins in a sleek black room – you know, the usual theatre stuff – but, by the end of act one, we perform on a quite literal river of blood which moves with us as we walk. It is an astonishing show aesthetically. I have seen a lot of theatre and I’ve never seen anything like it. And in a Brechtian maneuvre, the audience can see every other audience member at all times. Really looking forward to getting this thing onstage tomorrow. Rest day today. I haven’t spoken outside of rehearsal in 72 hours because the performance really puts my voice through the wringer and I’m concerned I might lose it within the next 6 days (that’s how long I have to last. All I ask for….)

    Starting some Beckett soon. Possibly the trilogy. Maybe a Godot reread then some more. I don’t know. Maybe I’ll pick up James’ HARLEM SMOKE, which has been lying around on my shelf for a wee while.

    In regards to the rest of your P.S.s — yeah, that McCarville book is awesome. I don’t love it as much as everybody else seems to but I sometimes struggle with unabashed autobiographical texts (the Simon Morris things being an exception because of how they play with fictional/non-fictional enterprise).
    I kind of like the new Madonna thing as well. Like, it sucks, but it’s also cool?

    Hey, I never got around to passing my condolences to you with regard to Kevin Killian. I’ve never read any, but I know how much he meant to this community and I know you were good friends. Hope you’re doing OK and the grieving process is both safe and raw.


  9. TheKeatonSong

    June 23, 2019 at 1:51 am

    I love waterparks. You should go to some. Gays in the Hood, thats kind of like Leprechaun in the Hood. The metro crowds are definitely different north of the city. My vision is a constant Rainbow Flag haha. I hope they didnt ruin Child’s Play. I need to order copies of your movies to show to my friend. He likes movie time. I just have to make sure he doesnt cum, because once he does there is nothing that keeps him from running for the door. He chose Lost Highway for a David Lynch movie. One more go tonight for Pride then I’m back in the studio. That damned git is some kind of a lover, I tell ya. Not sure how you feel about this one, but it wanted to play Social Distortion songs all day yesterday lol. I have a digital 8 track on the way. The tracks will be laid this week. Might your coffee be parfait

  10. Oh wow there’s so much Cale I haven’t listened to yet. That autobiography “What’s Welsh for Zen?” looks great, but expensive. I’ll have to keep my eyes open for it.

    BTW a month ago I loaned my copy of ‘Wrong’ to a reader friend who hadn’t read you before, and he came back recently to tell me that the first story deeply disturbed him, so now he’s hooked. Oddly enough a week later my other friend who sells books on insta found a copy of ‘Tenderness of the Wolves’ which I promptly jumped at. I just got it–haven’t read it all the way through–and it’s amazing.
    Thanks for the Cale-Hole.

  11. Nice overview of Cale’s bewildering range of work, Dennis. Funny, I only know Rose Garden Funeral of Sores from the Bauhaus version. And the title always reminds me of the underground Japanese movie Funeral Parade of Roses!

    Hope you find some interesting items from my lists. Yeah, scribbling by hand is a fine activity. I’m mining yours over the weekend, already extracted the Meijer collection among other things.

    Good to see we’re both Helm fans. I’m not familiar with his work before Chemical Flowers; will definitely keep an eye open for future releases.


  12. Hey Dennis,

    yesterday I commented too late or too slow.
    Sorry and now with a little copy and paste…

    … great stuff and inspiration. Grateful for that as always.
    I realized that I did not read many good books.
    This is sad. I must say I had to read some soso interesting stuff
    for university or related studies but I feel I have to change this.

    I have an eye on most of the albums on your music list but did not get an ear on them except Life Metal which I certainly love very much.
    Right at this very moment I sneak in the Aki Onda and will check out the rest from the list and although what else is recommended above.

    Other new music which I think are worth exploring:

    Nonelocal Forecast – Bubble Universe (Hausu Mountajn)

    R V Paintings – Samoa Highway (The Helen Scarsdale Agency)

    Sarah Davachi – Gave in Rest
    Sarah Davachi – Pale Bloom

    Alvin Lucier – Ricochet Lady (Black Truffle)

    Gilb – Tape #1

    Somehow I watched more old movies (Wong Kar Wai, Jarmusch, Malick, Chris Marker, Godard, Hitchcock) this year. And in contrast to that I paced through a lot of tv series: Game of Thrones, Deadwood, Black Mirror, In Treatment, Electric Dreams plus some German stuff.
    The result is that I can stand no more of this. I was really interested and open.
    Now I am kind of allergic to the cheap and very direct emotional control almost every minute. There is no open space. Serious newspapers and “important” cultural theorists promote such tv series so much and tell us that the end of books and movies are here because tv series can do sooo much more… Not sure about that.

    All the best from here!!

  13. Excellent, Cale-Hole post, Dennis. Sparks my Half-Welshness.

    Absolutely, re possible Setagaya tour, and putting a post together…

    Weekend mostly rained out here. Rainy season. Not my favourite time of year. But doesn’t last long. Then comes the heat…

    Funeral Parade of Roses. Great connection, Bill!

  14. Corey Heiferman

    June 24, 2019 at 8:37 am

    Hadn’t heard of Cale. Reminded me a bit of Van Dyke Parks. Are they friends or rivals or something?

    Don’t wanna jinx anything but the comments section is working well now!

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