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Monthly Archives: January 2019

Anthony Reynolds – Cries and Whispers (Burning Shed 5 April 2019)

Anthony Reynolds to release new Japan book ‘Cries And Whispers 1983-1991’ via Burning Shed

Burning Shed has announced the ‘Cries And Whispers’, the long-awaited follow-up to A Foreign Place’ (2015), the hugely successful biography of iconic British new wave innovators Japan by author Anthony Reynolds.  It is being made available as a limited deluxe hardback first edition from Burning Shed.

Detailing the fascinating musical adventures of David Sylvian, Richard Barbieri, Rob Dean, Steve Jansen and Mick Karn from the time following the band’s split in December 1982 until 1991, the book takes in David Sylvian’s work for his first three solo albums, The Dolphin Brothers, Dali’s Car with Bauhaus vocalist Peter Murphy, the brilliant but ill-feted album they released under the name Rain Tree Crow, and more.

The book also explores David Sylvian’s collaborations with Holger Czukay and Ryuichi Sakamoto, the latter of which resulted in their epic ‘Forbidden Colours’, which  featured on the soundtrack album of the hit film ‘Merry Christmas Mr Lawrence’.

‘A Foreign Place’ was the first serious book on Japan. It was translated into Japanese and published in Japan, where it held at number one on the Japanese Amazon Pop Music Biography chart for four weeks. It has sold over 4000 copies to date, including the Japanese edition, without any external distribution.

Both books include previously unpublished photographs, including many from the private archives of the band members themselves.

‘Cries and Whispers’ also features a cover by renowned graphic designer Carl Glover, plus contributions from Bill Nelson, Johnny Marr, Simon Raymonde (Cocteau Twins/Bella Union), Ivo Watts-Russell (4AD Records), Bill Bruford (King Crimson), Martin Fry (ABC), Paul Morley (NME/ ZTT Records), Thomas Dolby and the late Colin Vearncombe (Black), among others.

Initially a glam rock-inspired band, their sound and stylised visual appearance led to an unintentional association with the early-1980s New Romantic scene. The band split just as they were beginning to experience commercial success in the UK and abroad. They were unquestionably one of the most influential and innovative pop groups of the 1970s and 1980s.

photo by Cathy Boyce

“Is it shameful to be 40 something and still have a ‘favourite band’?  If so, colour me shamed.  Japan are my favourite band and as a fan I wanted to write and publish books on them that would enrapture and delight the fan in me. I hope I’ve done so, matching Style with content and mystery with beauty,” says author Anthony Reynolds.

Apart from ‘A Foreign Place’ and ‘Cries and Whispers’, Anthony Reynolds has published biographies on Leonard Cohen (a bestseller), Scott Walker and The Walker Brothers, and Jeff Buckley. He has also published two collections of poetry. To date, his books have been translated into 12 languages.

In 1993, Reynolds founded the critically acclaimed group Jack, releasing three albums between 1996 and 2002. Since then, Anthony has released 10 other albums under various guises plus innumerable singles and EPs, playing various concerts around the world. He also scored the soundtracks for feature length films ‘Open My Eyes’ and ‘Adrift in Soho’.

Burning Shed is an online record label/store since 2001 specialising in progressive and art rock music. Burning Shed hosts the official online shops for Jansen, Barbieri and Karn, Porcupine Tree and King Crimson, among many others.

In 212 pages, this 210 x 210mm square, hardback book is cloth-bound with a gold and silver foil debos and features approximately 260 pictures. All copies of ‘Cries and Whispers’ come with a postcard signed by the author. Both Japan books are available exclusively through Burning Shed at https://burningshed.com

Japan members:
* David Sylvian – vocals, guitars, keyboards
* Mick Karn – bass guitars, saxophone, backing vocals (died 2011)
* Steve Jansen – drums, percussion, keyboards
* Richard Barbieri – keyboards, synthesisers
* Rob Dean – guitars, backing vocals

Japan’s biggest UK album was ‘Tin Drum’ (1981), which featured hit singles ‘The Art of Parties’, ‘Visions of China’, ‘Ghosts’, and ‘Cantonese Boy’.

The band achieved nine UK Top 40 hits in the early 1980s, most notably the ethereal oddity ‘Ghosts’, which reached No. 5 in 1982, and scoring a UK Top 5 with the 1983 live album ‘Oil on Canvas’.

Keep up with Anthony Reynolds
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Posted by on January 31, 2019 in Books/Literary

 

Brim Liski- Duels (Latenight Weeknight Records 22 March 2019)

Colorado electronic gaze duo Brim Liski announces ‘Duels’ EP, previews ‘A Different View’ single

Denver-based Brim Liski has announced their new ‘Duels’ EP. Comprised of four tracks, this four-track offering is set to release on March 22 via Latenight Weeknight Records and The Orchard. Ahead of that release, they are previewing the lead track ‘A Different View’.

It has been seven years since their latest album, their previous one being ‘The Repetitions’ album in 2012. They released their eponymous ‘Brim Liski’ album in 2009.

Brim Liski presents a blend of electro, goth and future pop that is slightly gazey. This is a mixture of the diverse sounds both artists bring to the table, becoming something a bit different than the typical electroclash that is currently out there.

Their music is inspired by epic sounds you might imagine occurring in the cosmos. This is dark, limitless night music perfect for driving down an endless moon drenched highway.

“Like the EP as a whole, ‘A Different View’, is about the challenge of acceptance to new unexplored territories in our lives. Making big changes. Accepting things aren’t working and to move on. I personally had many issues blocking me from being who I wanted and needed to be,” says Ryan Policky.

“I had been falling victim to acceptance to things I should be pushing away, and once those things were fully pushed out of the picture, things became that much more clearer. Just like the discoveries of new galaxies, formations on other planets, and other unknowns, the focus is becoming more apparent as technology and time moves on.”

Brim Liski may have formed in 2008, but they sound more closely resembles a band from 2024. Their music about as cosmic and dreamy as Saturn’s Hexagon, which also features on the cover art of their new EP.

Today Brim Liski is a duo comprised of experimental multi-versed digital artist Cacheflowe (aka Justin Gitlin) and Ryan Policky, who is vocalist and producer for renowned prog-gazers A Shoreline Dream.

“I had been working with Justin at an ad agency – working on games for a bunch of entertainment projects for Sony and the like. I found out his passion for music production and we instantly hit it off. He had been working on material and setting up PR for his project, Cacheflowe, and I was working super hard on getting A Shoreline Dream up and going,” says Policky.

“We exchanged ideas and eventually started working on remixes, eventually leading to Brim Liski, which was a side project for both of us, but an important one. One of my dearest girlfriends Michelle Brim had just passed away, and I was torn apart. Brim Liski, named in her memory, became that passion project to get those emotions out, and I was lucky enough to have Justin’s talent help bring it to life.”

With strong initial support from XLR8R and Filter Magazine, it was clear that Brim Liski’s videos feel more like a blurred out dream being torn apart by technology. Their unique and dramatic live shows blend the art of dynamic installations and vivid colors.

‘Duels’ will be available via online stores and streaming platforms, including Spotify and iTunes. Slated for release on March 22, it can already be pre-ordered via Bandcamp.

CREDITS
All songs written by Ryan Policky and Justin Gitlin
Ryan Policky – Vocals, Lyrics, Guitar, Keys, Bass
Justin Gitlin – Programming, Percussion, Mix
Produced, recorded and mastered by Ryan Policky and Justin Gitlin
Copyright 2019 Latenight Weeknight Records

TRACK LIST
1. The Music Years
2. Duels
3. A Different View
4. Evolution

Keep up with Brim Liski
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Posted by on January 25, 2019 in Electronic

 

Atlanta’s K Michelle DuBois pays tribute to Neil Young on ‘Love and Only Love’ off new ‘Harness’ LP

Atlanta-based indie pop artist K Michelle DuBois has announced ‘Love and Only Love’ as her latest single off the new ‘Harness’ LP, her third solo release. In the accompanying video, directed and edited by Laurie Garner, she spells out her own interpretation of Neil Young’s classic ‘Love and Only Love’ against a backdrop of Sedona, Arizona.

Recall that Neil Young & Crazy Horse also rocked Young’s tune for over 10 minutes on their 1990 album ‘Ragged Glory’.

This new single follows up her ‘Harness’ album release, preceded by two singles – ‘Wild Weed’ and ‘Orchid’.

While most of DuBois’ solo output intertwines classic power-pop with 90s college rock, ‘Harness’ boasts a heftier sonic tone than her previous album ‘Astral Heart’ (2016) with its bouncy rhythms, jangly guitars and sing-song charm.

On this album, DuBois moves within the indie pop/rock world, showcasing her innate talent for distinctive hooks. Although she remains anchored in familiar catchy structures, this album pushes the experimental side of her previous work to new heights.

Based in Atlanta, GA, Dubois’ counts Blondie’s ‘Autoamerican’ and Divinyls among her influences, along with Stevie Nicks, Roxy Music, Flaming Lips, Grandaddy, and Fever Ray. DuBois’s live band includes Chandler Rentz (drums), Jim Prible (bass), André Griffin (keys) and Dan Dixon (guitar), who also recorded, produced and mastered this album at RCDC studio in Atlanta.

“To me, ‘Harness’ is about recognizing and utilizing all this amazing energy that is radiating. I’ve been deeply feeling my hippie roots and, at the same time, intrigued by advances in technology. I’m inspired by such stories as Ex Machina and West Word, which both invigorate and produce intense melancholy in me,” says K Michelle Dubois.

K Michelle DuBois got into music very young, building harmonies to pass the time during the family’s frequent road trips. DuBois began writing her own material as a teenager in Nashville after receiving a bass guitar for Christmas. She crafted her early songs on bass, a Yamaha synthesizer and a drum machine in her parents’ four-track studio, but a flood of creative possibilities came upon discovering open-tuning on acoustic guitar, thereafter solidifying her commitment to songwriting.

After forming her first band Ultrababyfat and releasing ‘Silver Tones Smile’ (1998), the group’s infectious pop-punk sound garnered national attention, leading to opening slots for numerous noteworthy acts Pavement and PJ Harvey, and a 2001 stint on The Warped Tour as one of the few female-led bands showcased in the festival’s lineup.

After the band disbanded in 2005, DuBois formed Luigi to explore her more progressive, art-rock leanings. After seven years together and ample critical acclaim, she re-emerged as a solo artist under the tempered guidance of producer Ben Price at Studilaroche, releasing her debut album ‘Lux Capone’ in 2012. DuBois also contributes vocals for Atlanta-based dream-gaze collective Parsons Rocket Project.

‘Harness’ is now available at online stores, such as iTunes, and streaming platforms such Spotify. The full album can also be ordered directly from the artist via Bandcamp.

CREDITS 
All songs written by K Michelle DuBois
Recorded, produced and mastered by Dan Dixon at RCDC studio in Atlanta, GA.
Dan Dixon – guitars, keys, backing vocals and percussion
K Michelle Dubois – vocals, guitar, keys and percussion
Chandler Rentz – drums

TRACK LIST
1. Orchid
2. Love and Only Love
3. Velvet Eyes
4. City Lights
5. Wild Weed
6. Heart Like a Yardstick
7. Celeste
8. Becoming Real
9. Margot on the Ocean
10. Dream Receiver

Keep up with K Michelle Dubois
Website | Facebook | Bandcamp | Twitter | YouTube | Instagram | Shop | Spotify | iTunes

 
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Posted by on January 23, 2019 in Alternative

 

Remain in Light – The Sentinel Diaries (2018)

(by Fondas SumerSon)

With their new album, Remain in Light from Thessaloniki become a synonym for “musical progress”. I still remember when I first got in touch with their music 5 years ago. Back then, I could not imagine their future evolution in terms of music and lyrics. I guess that their course in time has led one of the most active underground goth/wave labels (DEEPLAND RECORDS) to offer them a contract for the release of their third and best album so far!

In “The Sentinel Diaries” the band’s music still files under post punk/new wave mixed with 80’s goth, but is not restricted to that…. From new wave songs rich in trad goth guitars in the vein of Children on Stun and Vendemmian (Green Book), to Smiths/ Morrissey-inspired tunes with an epic goth refrain (Mercury Walk) and from there to old school aggressive goth rock with a touch of The Damned (Sons of Terra) and dark wave/post punk tracks with a haunting singing performance which reminded me of the Finnish vamps Two Witches (The Core/The Void).

Their “punk/hardcore” influences are also present on the album. In “Hollow Mountain” for instance, they combine a punkish rhythm section with a melodic Sad Lovers & Giants-like refrain. And since their guitarist Y is a huge Nephilim fan, they’re paying their own tribute to them with “Sailing to Empty Skies“, a slow tempo atmospheric tune balancing among the Nephs and Bauhaus with a speedy, brilliant, ending.

They also made a wise choice by including “The Kiss” in the new album, a song that was released as a single before the release of their long player. This is a Sisters of Mercy/ The Chameleons-like tune with well worked guitars and goth rock attitude.

Urban Traitor” is a song worthy of a special mention as it is styled after the modern era of new wave (as played by bands like The Rope or Principe Valiente), while maintaining elements from old legendary wave favorites like Pink Turns Blue.
Last but not least, pay attention to their cover version of John Cambell’s “One Believer“, in which the band transforms a classic blues tune into a dark wave hymn! Excellent!

Finally, I would like to point out that their singer (Elder K.) displays a fine ability to perform every song in a theatrical way, bringing various emblematic vocalists to mind like Peter Murphy, Carl McCoy, Nick Cave and Garce Allard! Talented indeed.

Buy it from HERE

 
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Posted by on January 21, 2019 in Goth

 

Elvis Presley: The Searcher (HBO 2018)

I generally like documentaries, so last night I had on last year’s “Elvis Presley: The Searcher” directed by Thom Zimmy.

Before I write the following, I’d like to note that although I am not a Presley fan, I know a great number of his songs, since I come from a generation whose parents were playing songs from the Greek islands, Latin music, Greek pop of the ‘60s, rock’n’roll bands from the US and the UK, 60’s mod jazz, etc.

The funny memories of my relatives holding each other to do the yanka dance and then mambo with Greek bouzouki are parts of my childhood.

In any case, throwing two different music styles into a melting pot and mixing them is interesting and still happens today, maybe more than ever before…

I won’t refer to Presley’s political views here, since the documentary only states his strong religious beliefs.

I will try to see the whole thing from a different angle, with good intentions, and with a sociological interest (as much as I can analyze it that is):  A white young man named Elvis Presley was born in the decade of the Great Depression in Tupelo, Mississippi, and relocated to Memphis, Tennessee, with his family when he was 13 years old.

He was born in the two-room shotgun house.

The poorest of the poor lived in those houses.

His twin brother didn’t survive birth, and his father went to prison for a period of six months after he was found guilty of altering a check written by his landowner.

As most of us that live on this side of the pond, have in mind this image of the American South, on which, on one hand, you have the poor African-Americans and on the other hand you have the white supremacists.  I’d like to add a third group of people to the equation: the poor whites who were living under the same conditions as the African-Americans.

All these poor people, regardless of their skin complexion, were living together, working together, being friends with each other, having fun at the same places, and were going to the same churches.

It wasn’t just the poor African-Americans that the white supremacists didn’t like, they didn’t like the poor white people either ’cause they associated with the Afro-Americans.

Interracial marriages were out of the question of course, being banned in some states until the mid-1960s.

Loving” is an interesting movie dealing with this very subject.

Produced in 2016, “Loving” tells the story of Richard and Mildred Loving, a couple whose arrest for interracial marriage in 1960s Virginia began a legal battle that would end with the Supreme Court’s historic 1967 decision.

Living 65 years later in a far away land doesn’t help us to fully realize under which conditions this social class was surviving.

Since we are talking about both colors, I think this is the proper definition, and I really consider it to be the “working class” in these American states. It is actually the poorest level of it.

I find this to be of great interest and that’s why I write this blog, to point out what a white musician, who was acceptable by the wide white audience of his era, due to his color, could succeed by playing African-American music, which would not pass to the wide white audience in any other case.

I saw someone quoting that “rhythm and blues and gospel music had a baby and it was called rock’n’roll” and that sounds right to me.

But if you are interested in the living conditions of those African-Americans, look for the history-making classic “Black Like Me” by John Howard Griffin.

“Griffin was an American journalist and author from Texas who wrote about racial equality.

He is best known for his project to temporarily pass as a black man and journey for six weeks through the segregated Deep South (Louisiana, Mississippi, Alabama, and Georgia) of 1959 to see life and segregation from the other side of the color line.

He first published a series of articles on his experience in Sepia Magazine, which had underwritten the project.

He published a fuller account in the book “Black Like Me” (1961). This was later adapted as a 1964 film of the same name.” – Wikipedia

What happened to John Howard Griffin – from the outside and within himself – as he made his way through the segregated Deep South generated a number of so many threats, that when his book was published, it made him take his family and leave the US.

Back to Elvis Presley.

Through this everyday friction of the white boy with the gospel songs of the church, music went straight to his soul.

There wasn’t much to do in the area apart from music and the church so I can fully understand that these songs, passionately sung by the believers during the Sunday sermons, worked as a way of expression, as a psychological relief, and way to have a good time for those poor people.

By the age of 13 Elvis and his family moved to Memphis and by the age of 17 he would hang out in the Flamingo Room.

Music giants such as BB King, Rufus Thomas, Johnny Ace, and Bobby “Blue” Bland used to play in little neighborhood juke joints, and, like Ike Turner quotes, “Elvis would park his truck in the alley behind the club and he used to come around to the back of this place…” and he would watch them play…

The story of Presley’s evolution is more or less known to most of us but for anyone who wants to spend three and a half hours of his life with country, blues, and rock’n’roll music would enjoy watching “Elvis Presley: The Searcher”.

But, the way I see it, if Elvis Presley did not exist, we probably wouldn’t listen to the music genre that we call “rock music”.

In any possible musical form …

So, how would life be without, The Beatles, The Rolling Stones, Black Sabbath, Sex Pistols, Motorhead, or any other band like these?

Irish writer and musician Larry Kirwan came very close to what I am trying to say here with his book “Liverpool Fantasy” that was published in 2003 (an alternate history where the Beatles split up after recording “Love Me Do“).

To explain myself:
The teen’s opinion regarding the music that would be played in the house was worthless before 1955 as all that mattered on that section was father’s music taste.

The emergence of rock’n’roll created a new consuming power: the teenagers.

Young boys and girls started spending their pocket money buying records and that was great news to the ears of the record companies.

A new target group for the entire music industry.

At the same time, there were other musicians playing rock’n’roll, but they were either black, or white that didn’t have Elvis’s background and were lacking the knowledge of black music that he had acquired.

On the bottom line, maybe they just weren’t lucky enough…

To cut a long story short, there were others out there playing rock’n’roll too but only Elvis was # 1, only he became “Τhe King”.

Yes, he was playing African-American music and as you realize those were difficult times to filter it into the “white” market but there were a number of reasons the people of the industry used in order to work things out and skip any undesired obstacles: he was a “good” hard working, God-fearing Southern boy that loved his mama.

He was probably shaking his hips a little more than what was needed but for every shake of his hips the sweet sound of dollars echoed in the cash desk of the record label/manager/promoter, etc.

The queue of people who made money out of the idea of having a 19 year-old white boy playing black music was endless.

His influence reached the islands across the ocean.

Young English musicians were waiting for night to come to break into the customs office, open the boxes with the rock’n’roll singles that were imported from the States, learn how to play these new songs and perform them live at the local club the following night.

That’s how the Mersey scene was founded and all those music bands that followed and brought this music to me and you, spreading it to the mountains and the deserts.

Songs were penned expressing political opinions, philosophical ideas, religious views or simply erotic confessions in every spoken language of the world.

People conceived babies, becoming parents while listening to this music genre while others heard a song and cried because they had shared it with someone who they were no longer together with anymore …

I hope that now it’s obvious why I wrote this post…

 

Mark Fisher to release XTC book ‘What Do You Call That Noise?’ with support from all XTC members

Mark Fisher to release new XTC book ‘What Do You Call That Noise?’

Quotes from ‘What Do You Call That Noise?’

“The song is a little machine. If you take apart the machine, it’s not a clock any more and you can’t tell the time by it.” – Andy Partridge

“Music… I couldn’t imagine life without it. It’s always there.” – Dave Gregory

“I was always quite envious of XTC because they weren’t put in the same pigeonhole as punk bands. They were regarded as a bit more arty than that. We always had to fight off this flag, being under the banner of punk… XTC never seemed to fall into that trap. They had that freedom.” – Rick Buckler ( The Jam)

“Seeing them on TV was like being in a tribe. Together I thought we might rule the world… Yes, I stole from them. I’m sure I was not the only one. The wit did woo mee. I fell head over heels for the clever word play, the charge of the story and the sentimental Britishness of it all.” – Chris Difford (Squeeze)

“XTC’s music has always been there in my consciousness. I think about it a lot when I’m making records… They come across as an everyday group of people and that’s very much what Barenaked Ladies were about too – living as ordinary a life as you can in a bizarre lifestyle like rock’n’roll.” – Steven Page (Barenaked Ladies)

“I remember when I first heard Making Plans for Nigel on the radio… I absolutely loved the song, especially the drum part… Terry’s drumming was so rhythmic. I was very much influenced by him. In fact, I would drum along to XTC songs to warm up. It was very inspiring to me!” – Debbi Peterson (The Bangles)

From Mark Fisher, the editor of ‘The XTC Bumper Book of Fun for Boys and Girls’comes a new musical exploration of one of the most essential pop groups of the 20th century. ‘What Do You Call That Noise? An XTC Discovery Book‘ is a compelling 228-page book that involves some of the world’s leading musicians and keenest fans of XTC. Here, they come together to discuss what makes this Swindon band so very special and the extent of their impact of their music worldwide.

Every member of XTC also makes an appearance. Andy Partridgespeaks about mixing, Dave Gregory on arranging and Barry Andrewson the piano. The book also features interviews with XTC drummers Pete Phipps, Pat Mastelotto, Ian Gregory, Prairie Prince, Dave Mattacks and Chuck Sabo.

“Every XTC album that got ignored gave the band a real power jolt. It was like being the Duracell bunny and getting a fresh set of batteries in your back. It made us want to strive harder,” says XTC frontman Andy Partridge.

“Weirdly, it does feel like the band is being appreciated now. We’ve become a historical artefact that’s more important than when it was a pot in Cro-Magnon times. As a museum exhibit it’s become priceless, but as a Neanderthal pot nobody wanted to bother pissing in it. It makes me feel valued – as long as I don’t go into national treasure territory!”

Fisher also offers an in-depth review of Colin Moulding and Terry Chambers playing live for the first time in 36 years as TC&I. during their recent Swindon Arts Centre residency, a performance named on BBC Radio 6 Music’s Marc Riley show as one of the gigs of 2018.

Contributing musicians include:
• Rick Buckler: The Jam
• Chris Difford: Squeeze
• Debbi Peterson: The Bangles
• Dennis Locorriere: Dr Hook
• Steve Conte: New York Dolls
• Steven Page: Barenaked Ladies
• Chris Butler: The Waitresses
• Tracey Bryn: Voice of the Beehive
• Jason Falkner: Jellyfish
• Andrew Falkous: Future of the Left
• Peter Gabriel
• Mike Keneally: Frank Zappa

Plus Anton Barbeau, Todd Bernhardt, Chris Braide, Mikey Erg, Anne McCue, Jim Moray, Erich Sellheim, Rosie Vela, Mark Vidler and David Yazbek, as well as members of Fassine, Big Big Train, bis, Cosmic Rough Riders, Odds, Tin Spirits, Palm Ghosts and many more…

2018 marked the 40-year anniversary of XTC’s first studio album ‘White Music’. While XTC was founded in 1972, it wasn’t until 1979 that XTC had their first UK charting single. Colin Moulding and Andy Partridge continued their partnership until the group’s dissolution in 2006.

Lately there has been renewed interest in XTC, in part due to the release of eye-opening XTC documentary ‘This Is Pop’ about the band’s history and legacy, which looks at XTC and their journey from mercurial pop outsiders to full blown national treasures and one of Britain’s most influential yet unsung bands.

‘What Do You Call That Noise?’ will be released on March 4. Anyone ordering ‘What Do You Call That Noise?’ before midnight on Sunday, January 27 will be inducted into the Venerable League of Neon Shufflers and have their name published in the book. The book can be obtained for £17.99 + free UK p&p (from £5 international p&p)

Praise for ‘The XTC Bumper Book of Fun for Boys and Girls’

“A sumptuous compendium… The most comprehensive and incisive book about XTC yet published” – Dom Lawson, Prog Magazine

“Music publication of the year” – Dave Jennings, Louder than War

“Varied, surprising and fun” – Samantha Burke, Cent Magazine

“Dotted throughout those original pages and some relaxed, genuinely insightful interviews. Fans new and old will pore over this” – Jamie Atkins, Record Collector

“A delicious thing to dive in and out of” – Iain Lee, Talk Radio

Keep up with Limelight XTC
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Posted by on January 19, 2019 in Books/Literary

 

Julien Temple – The Ecstasy of Wilko Johnson (documentary, 2015)

I often repeat myself by saying that we survive on this planet by luck and that we are lucky enough to wake up every day.

We have to appreciate and enjoy life, and this is precisely what Julien Temple is about in his documentary “The Ecstasy of Wilko Johnson

Temple makes a universal, poetic film about life and death around us, focused on Dr. Feelgood’s guitarist, Wilko Johnson, who was diagnosed in 2009 with incurable pancreatic cancer.

While Wilko recounts his feelings and thoughts when his doctors told him that he had 10 months to live, Temple uses footage from movies like Ingmar Bergman‘s “The Seventh Seal” and Philip Saville‘s, “Hamlet at Elsinore“and has Wilko playing chess with “death”.

Wilko, an avid book lover, reads Shakespeare, Milton, Medieval Icelandic Literature and talks about astronomy.

He is calm when he receives the diagnosis of the forthcoming end.

He feels an elation and realizes that he does not have to create any other memories for the future, simply because there is no future for him.

He refuses chemotherapy and decides to enjoy every moment of his remaining life putting together a farewell tour with bassist Norman Watt-Roy and drummer Dylan Howe

It’s not the first time that cancer shows up on his doorstep.

This is how he lost his wife Irene 10 years ago…

Wilko enjoys playing the character of Ser Ilyn Payne, the executioner in “Game of Thrones” and while the mass started pushing into other organs in his body, he records the album “Going Back Home” with Roger Daltrey.

The album turned out to be successful but Wilko knows he is going to die…

Julien Temple’s documentary “The Ecstasy of Wilko Johnson” is not a documentary about rock’n’roll, Dr. Feelgood or English politics.

It’s a poetic movie about isolation, about the transitional stage in which a man is waiting in the anteroom of death, trying to experience the ecstasy of existence for the last time.

You can watch it here…

 
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Posted by on January 18, 2019 in Documentaries, Uncategorized