The Vinyl Factory and The Mott Collection announce a new exhibition and publication: American Hardcore, 1978-1990.
The exhibition brings together 50 American Hardcore records spanning the apex of the genre from the late 70s up to the 90s, and takes place at The Vinyl Factory Chelsea from 11 April to 4 May 2013.
The collection showcases the subtle shifts and changes, and finally the overall unification of what began as a disparate musical style that developed into a rigid set of fixed codes, sounds, and political beliefs.
From the raw stripped down sounds of Black Flag to the spasmodic reggae influenced Bad Brains, Hardcore emerged as a puritanical suburban rely to the decadence of big city Punk Rock outfits such as the Ramones or the New York Dolls.
Popping up in small West Coast communities like Hermosa Beach, Oxnard and San Pedro and simultaneously in East Coast cities such as Washington DC and Boston the Hardcore movement was obsessively local, yet at the same time extremely far reaching due to the punishing tour schedules bands would put themselves through.
The collection of 50 seven-inch singles will be for sale as a framed artwork from the gallery. In addition, The Vinyl Factory has created this commemorative publication.
Physics and heavy metal don't seem to have a lot in common, but Matt Bierbaum and Jesse Silverberg have found a connection. Both are graduate students at Cornell University. They're also metal heads who enjoy going to concerts and hurling themselves into mosh pits full of like-minded fans.
About five years ago Silverberg took his girlfriend to her first gig. "Usually I would jump in the mosh pit," he says. "But this time I wanted her to be safe and have a good time, so we stayed out on the side and watched things from there."
While he was watching, he realized that the motion of people in a mosh pit looks kind of like molecules moving in a gas.
"It was basically just this random mess of collisions, which is essentially how you want to think about the gas in the air that we breathe," he says.
Physicists have worked out the basic rules that describe this kind of motion, so Bierbaum and Silverberg decided to look for the rules of motion in moshing. They went to concerts and studied videos from YouTube. Silverberg emphasizes that no tax dollars went toward buying concert tickets — the study is a labor of love.
Using just a few variables, like how fast people moved and how dense the crowd was, Bierbaum and Silverberg created a mathematical model that they presented at this week'sMarch meeting of the American Physical Society. Using a mixture of simulated moshers and standing fans, they could reproduce mosh pits, circle pits and other common collective motions that take place at metal concerts.
You can try some simulations for yourself in their mosh pit simulator below.
It's not just the metal heads that obey these kinds of basic mathematical rules, says Andreas Bausch, a researcher at the Munich Technical University in Germany. Flocks of birds and schools of fish do similar things. So do car drivers. Now concertgoers can be added to the list, he told NPR in an email. "This is indeed cool stuff."
The new mosh pit research could be interesting for another reason. In emergencies people panic, and the movement rules they follow change. Mosh pits might provide clues about the new rules.
"We hope that this will provide a lens into looking at other extreme situations such as riots and protests and escape panic," Bierbaum says.They plan to continue their research, while rocking on.
This mosh pit simulator is based on the research by Jesse Silverberg and Matthew Bierbaum. Click the Show controls button at the bottom to play around with different parameters of the mosh pit. To learn more about what the parameters are, click here. To play with the full version, click here.
Jean-Michel Basquiat's tribute to the mad and bad world of William Burroughs – including the unfortunate night in Mexico when he shot and killed his wife in a William Tell game – is to be sold in London after 30 years in the same ownership.
Alex Branczik, a contemporary arts specialist at the auction house, said Basquiat, who died aged 27 in 1988, was one of the most sought-after contemporary artists. The work, Five Fish Species, is a reflection on and celebration of his favourite writer, the beat generation author Burroughs.
"Basquiat is the blue chip artist of the moment," said Branczik. "He is recognised today in perhaps the same way he recognised Burroughs in the 1980s as someone who was streets ahead of his time – Basquiat is the artist who everybody wants at the moment so we have high hopes of it doing well at auction."
The painting makes direct references to an incident that understandably haunted Burroughs, the night in 1951 in Mexico that he shot at the tumbler of water on his wife Joan's head; and missed. The writer, almost certainly high on drugs, spent a fortnight in jail before bribes led to his release and he was later given a two-year suspended jail sentence.
In Basquiat's painting there is reference to "Burrough's bullet" and possibly Burroughs's profile on the back of a quarter-dollar coin dated 1951 with the word Liberty.
It comes from a good year for Basquiat; he had gone from reprobate graffitti artist to adored star of the vibrant New York art scene with money, commercial success and, for a time, Madonna as his girlfriend.
His drug overdose death in 1988 cut his artistic career tragically short. Branczik said: "Even within that seven-year period the market does separate the early works from the late works in the same way you would with Picasso, who had a career lasting some seven decades."
Sotheby's has estimated the painting, which has a triptych format, at £4.25m-£6.25m – clearly a lot of money but some way off the auction record for a Basquiat set last November at Christie's in New York when an untitled work sold for $26.4m (£16.6m), beating the artist's previous record of $20.1m (£12.6m).
Passing Stranger is a sound-rich chronicle of poets and poetry associated with the East Village. Narrated by filmmaker Jim Jarmusch, it contains site-specific poetry, interviews with poets, archival recordings and music by John Zorn.
Passing Stranger - The East Village Poetry Walk is an audio tour of poetry related sites in New York City's East Village. It is produced by Pejk Malinovski, with support from The Poetry Foundation. The interactive documentary experience was created in collaboration with Zeega. The audio file (download here) and map outlining the route (download here) allow the user to take the tour using their own mp3 player. The tour is about 2 miles and 95 minutes long. The main focus is on poetry and poets from the 1950s to the present. The tour does not provide a linear or concise history, but rather, like a walk, an anecdotal, digressive tapestry of the poetry that lived and continues to live in the neighborhood. Passing Stranger includes commentary from key figures from the East Village poetry scene, including Ron Padgett, Anne Waldman and Richard Hell, as well as historical audio from poets like Allen Ginsberg, Kenneth Koch and Frank O'Hara. Poet and critic Daniel Kane provides background and context to set the scene. The Walking Tour ranges from the Bowery in the west to Avenue C in the East, Bleecker Street in the south and 12th street in the north. Stops include St. Mark's On-the-Bowery, W.H. Auden's old apartment building, Tompkins Square Park, Allen Ginsberg's old building, the Bowery poetry club. Each stop contains a montage of poetry, interviews and archival recordings relating to that particular place.
first image a lynchian bouffant is compared to katsushika hokusai's 'the great wave' in 'the painting' by jimmy chen what is david lynch known for? some say his films, others would argue his hair. san francisco-based creative jimmy chen has married the iconic
variations of the filmmaker's hairstyles with the equivalent in famous artworks. the grid, entitled 'the painting', puts monet's water lilies side by side with a perfectly groomed lynchian bouffant, or perhaps van gogh's starry night can be likened to a silvery shock of hair. the work combines some of the two great vices - hair and art - with a cutting wit as an unconventional tribute to a handful of great cultural symbols of our time.
“I think the word happy, like many words, has been perverted. Perverted by a society to some degree, but by a marketplace entirely. I think for me to be happy—which, I think you’re asking me what it means to be happy—is when I’m not thinking about it … I think life is the ideal. The way I’ve always tried to live is just in the moment. Just do my work and just try to deal with things as they come along. I’m not thinking about anything else. I’m just doing this right now. That’s happiness.”
Ian Mackaye barely needs an introduction. There might be a young soul out there who has no inkling of what an Ian Mackaye might be , or experienced any of the music he has released into this world. So I will share a few thoughts regarding him.
The first time I met Ian was backstage at a Fugazi show in LA. A mutual friend, O, had got me the wristband but insisted that I go and introduce myself to Ian after the show. Ian can be an intimidating figure. He is no-nonsense and his reputation precedes him. Although I had spoken with him on the phone before regarding music for a skate video, I was quite scared to just walk up and start talking to a guy for no reason. But I did it and Ian was gracious and instantly dispelled any awkwardness. A few years later when Fugazi went on tour but was only going as far west as Texas, Deanna and I decided to drive from California to Austin and then on to some other cities, basically following them around Grateful Dead style. It was on these few days I got to see the Fugazi operation from the inside. These were just guys doing what they loved to do, and doing it in their own way. We are all just humans navigating through life; no one is more important than the other. This band of people made amazing music, and the lyrics actually said something, and the concerts were magical and raw. An expression of art done live for the few people who were there. Years of playing together made them a well-oiled machine, no set lists needed; all songs could be played and started by any member of the band with a look or musical cue. It was fucking nuts to see it go down. I feel so lucky to have been in those rooms, and honestly, no concert I have ever seen since has come close to the energy and power of a Fugazi show.
I run a skateboard company and do various other things. My life is busy just like everyone else’s. And like most of us, each day I’m bombarded with choices; some are big, some are small. Some of my choices impact a lot of other people, but most don’t. In what direction should I guide my company? How should I navigate this or that project? What shirt should I wear today? On some of those bigger decisions, I sometimes ask myself this: “What would Ian do?” I wonder how he will feel being associated with a popular slogan from the world of religion? My bet is that he would be mildly amused. He’s probably heard it before, I can’t be the first person to come up with this. I’m not trying to equate him with some sort of deity. He is a human. This is not anything close to worship. It’s just that he has been a public figure in the music and skateboard communities for over a generation, and therefore the moves he has made have been public and viewable from afar. And he knows it. He has been accessible and vocal about what he is doing through myriad interviews. He has led by example. He is an inspiring human being.
I have been inspired by the way Ian started and ran Dischord Records, and especially how, as a group of people, Fugazi conducted themselves. They made sure their concerts were at places that allowed all ages shows so as not to alienate young people. They made tickets to their shows cost only 5 dollars to make their music available to more people. They didn’t have a “merch table” festooned with t-shirts, posters and stickers of their band because as Ian famously said, “We are not a t-shirt company, we are a band.” Fugazi would stop the show mid-song if they saw someone in the crowd who needed help, or to offer a troublemaker his 5 dollars back to “get the fuck out”. They refused to sell their music for commercials but would give it for free to a young person like me who called Dischord records asking if I could use some Fugazi songs in a skateboard video. In 1980 Ian started Dischord records by putting out an EP by his broken up band, Teen Idles . He knew nobody would put out a record from a broken up band, so they just did it themselves. DIY is a catchphrase these days. It’s a catchphrase I like, and it applies to any world. (Well, maybe not surgery. I don’t think DIY surgery is a good idea.) What Ian and his friends did was not wait for recognition from some higher source; they just became their own label. That way they would be calling the shots and they would be making up the rules as they went. Rules that were logical and made sense to them.
WWID? – It’s sort of a joke, but it does pop into my head when I have a big choice to make. I have become the person I am through a variety of circumstances, both physical and mental. The people I grew up around, my parents or lack thereof, skateboarding, music, books, life lessons. All of these things add up in forming you. The music Ian MacKaye has had a hand in making has been a big part of my life. The music itself, the lyrics and my interpretation of them, the thoughts he has expressed in interviews, all of this has been a part of what has formed my politics and how I see the world. I feel fortunate that it was these bands, and not hair-metal or pop, that struck a chord with me. I guess what I’m saying is that if I could run my company, or my art career the way Ian and his bandmates ran Fugazi, then that would be something.