1. arjuna-vallabha:

    Kali, bengali painting


  2. The systematic looting of language can be recognized by the tendency of its users to forgo its nuanced, complex, mid-wifery properties for menace and subjugation. Oppressive language does more than represent violence; it is violence; does more than represent the limits of knowledge; it limits knowledge. Whether it is obscuring state language or the faux-language of mindless media; whether it is the proud but calcified language of the academy or the commodity driven language of science; whether it is the malign language of law-without-ethics, or language designed for the estrangement of minorities, hiding its racist plunder in its literary cheek - it must be rejected, altered and exposed. It is the language that drinks blood, laps vulnerabilities, tucks its fascist boots under crinolines of respectability and patriotism as it moves relentlessly toward the bottom line and the bottomed-out mind. Sexist language, racist language, theistic language - all are typical of the policing languages of mastery, and cannot, do not permit new knowledge or encourage the mutual exchange of ideas.
    — Toni Morrison, Nobel Prize for Literature speech, 1993 (via crankyskirt)

    (Source: nobelprize.org, via crankyskirt)


  3. “There was a legal dispute about whether the melody and very nice chord sequence, with that distinctive diminished seventh, had been lifted from The Chiffons’ ‘He’s So Fine’. Maybe, but no one comparing their mindless “doo-lang-doo-lang” backing vocals with Harrison’s extraordinary multifaith mantra – which moves from Hallelujah to Hare Krishna – could dispute he was doing something new.”

    Here’s what I wrote in reply.

    This is age-old institutionalised sexism.

    George Harrison created rock music (male) – serious, laden with portent, aimed at teenage boys, ripe for reading meaning into by half-arsed sociologists masquerading as music ‘journalists’.

    The Chiffons created pop music (female) – disposable, flighty, aimed at teenage girls, ripe for ripping apart by half-arsed sociologists masquerading as music ‘journalists’.

    Is “doo-lang doo-lang doo-lang” (The Guardian could at least quote the lyric properly – one would think they’d never heard the song) any more trite or mindless than George’s repetition of the line “my sweet lord”? Of course not. I’m sure The Chiffons believed in the beauty of what they were singing as much as George did. But, of course, to the (male) rock commentators at The Guardian, The Chiffons created ‘pop’ music and so it automatically is ‘mindless’.

    “Doo lang doo lang” is just as much a mantra as “om madi padme hum”, if you choose to make it. Unless, of course, The Guardian believes that religious folk are somehow less ‘mindless’ than their irreligious counterparts?

    It’s a shame that such thoughtless sexism has spoiled what otherwise reads as a decent effort to honour George’s memory.

    Both songs are great (disposable) pop music. Why the need to devalue one to praise the other?

    - Everett True

    Institutionalised sexism at The Guardian | The Chiffons vs George Harrison


  4. # In musicology there is this notion of bioacoustics. These are musical memes that in some way correlate with our biology. A biopulse would emulate a heartbeat, for example. Bioacoustic relationships with music are seen to create universal responses in the listener. These can be emotional responses/interpretations of the music, or they can be space-time relations. Some memes do not emulate our biology, but they take on the same universality and work in reverse: They start to prompt our biology.

    Am I losing you? Do you care? I’m talking about dancing, motherfuckers.

    What I’m saying is head banging is not just a sub-cultural phenomenon. It is a musical semiosis — a human response to the musical meme of a straight quarter drum line with a backbeat accent on the second and fourth of a bar.

    Some of these things are hard-wired in us now. Years of cultural conditioning make up those formulaic hits we can’t help but shuffle along to. Years of cultural conditioning create a barrier of resistance against the mainstream embracing experimental music. You get the picture.

    # The drop is not exclusive to one genre of music. The drop does not suggest one sub-culture over another. The drop is a universal meme, and it has attained universal status. On a dance floor, the drop is for hands in the air. At the filthiest backwater pub, the drop is for beers in the air.

    I live for that drop. All through my semiotics studies, I was preoccupied with the effect of percussive space. Cadence. The difference between a snare on the pulse, and a snare slightly after the pulse. Do you know how significant that difference can be? It can be massive, it can change the entire tone of a song, from sugary, memorable, pleasant (resolving) to tense, uncomfortable, anxious (unresolved). It can form a ripple effect that unmistakably renovates every aspect of the music. There is a whole world of difference hidden at the center of a sixteenth beat, is what I’m saying. It’s important. It matters.

    Much of the time, that’s what music boils down to for me: cadence, rhythmic texture, the temporal and kinaesthetic. It’s not just percussion, it’s all percussive elements. Elocution, effects, the entire bottom end— doesn’t matter if it is a riff or a tom tom, doesn’t matter if it’s Jay Z or Lou Reed, doesn’t matter if we’re thinking synchronics or diachronics. That is what I listen for and what catches my breath.

    So rap and its kin are my promised land. They are all about complex rhythmic structure, syncopated after-beats and big, stalling one drops.

    They break it down. And if you’d ever been in the fray, if you’d ever stood on the frontlines as Nas or Saul Williams or whoever you want spat a frenetic cadence at you, as the entire crowd pulsed with their reverse biorhythm—all limbs and thrusting hips, all popping shoulders, sweat stains and hands in the air—if you’d ever felt the room stop, just stop mid-ripple and curl up together, suspended in tormented hunger for what comes next, just waiting as the whole thing gets very quiet and that eighth beat drop drags out for a whole bar, for ten bars, for seventy billion years, and then explodes in a supernova of thick, dirty synths and drums that kick and howl their way out of the silence, then you’d like rap too.

    So here’s a tip, to everyone who has rolled their eyes at me, scoffed, nodded smugly to themselves and so on. To all the indie obscurists and the little hipsters so vulnerable to social promises of music esoterica: Take it to the bridge and break it down (READ: eat a dick).


    Excerpts from one of my favorite music articles writ - Break It Down by Meg White http://www.collapseboard.com/music-blogs-3/meg-white/break-it-down-rihanna/


  5. sexualanomaly:

    Hilarious but fun science fact! The reason why this works is because of the rhythm syncopation. All of these songs (and most songs by black musicians) have 2/4 bass count. (1 and 2 and 1 and 2) rather than a 4/4 count ( 1 and 1 and 1 and 1) beat you see in other genre. This 2/4 count is similar to the human heartbeat. It’s why we have a a better grasp of rhythm in music and in dance.

    (Source: imsosickofjustinbieber, via vinebox)


  6. (Source: mugenstyle)


  7. Just a reminder that the actor of “Queen” is a goddamned smoking hot woman.

    (Source: nerdball, via omptimism)


  8. arundhottie-roy:

    i did a thing

    This is so good.


  9. I am not a creation of the antique pastoral world. I am modernity personified. Did you not know that’s what you were creating? The modern age? Did you really imagine that your modern creation would hold to the values of Keats and Wordsworth? We are men of iron and mechanization now. We are steam engines and turbines. Were you really so naive to imagine that we’d see eternity in a daffodil?
    — The Creature, Penny Dreadful 1x03: Resurrection  (via heretherebemonstershungry)

    (Source: lou-bloom, via seaside-sunchild)


  10. Old man hands