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September 29, 2007

Paris Hilton: I Want You (Ghost of a flea Mix)

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Antihistamines + one big hook = remix! Now is the time at the Flea when we dance (most probably nsfw).

Posted by the Flea at 04:44 PM | Comments (1)

September 28, 2007

Paris Hilton: Nothing In This World

I can only ask PDS sufferers to give this one a chance, it is a catchy tune.* Now is the time at the Flea when we dance.

* Counting down to most obvious rejoinder in 5... 4... 3...

Posted by the Flea at 07:44 AM

Spidey Up Against the Wall

The Morgan Freeman thing is weird enough, Spiderman as a regular comedy feature on The Electric Company is weirder still. I had somehow blanked out this part of my childhood.

Posted by the Flea at 07:43 AM | Comments (1)

September 27, 2007

Partie de campagne

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I knew that Sylvia Bataille* had starred in a never quite finished short film by Jean Renoir but I had never expected to see it. Enter a dvd release, the internet and the whole of A Day in the Country (1936) is on-line in five parts. Merveillieux!**

Partie de Campagne, an adaptation of the Guy de Maupassant short story Une Partie de Campagne (set in the 1860's but first published in 1881), is for many the "ideal" Renoir, with the humanity and respect it brings to bear on the central characters (still allowing lesser characters - the father and the fiancé - to be crudely caricatured) combined with its vivid depiction of the natural world. If it lacks the depth and complexity of, say, La Grande Illusion or La Règle du Jeu, Partie de Campagne, even in its unfinished state, is a joy to watch.

* Married to Flea-fav Georges Bataille and later to Flea-fav Jacques Lacan.
** Even if featuring some caddish behaviour and egregious lens blur.

Posted by the Flea at 07:07 AM

Corvo: Fantomatique

Now is the time at the Flea when we dance.

Posted by the Flea at 07:04 AM

Goth Holiday

Irn Bru taps an unlikely demographic. Friends don't let friends wear Crow make-up, btw.

Related: Kath's audition. What do you do for fun? Sit in dark rooms.

Posted by the Flea at 07:03 AM | Comments (2)

September 26, 2007

Public Image Ltd: Bad Life

Arguably the best base-line in history. Now is the time at the Flea when we dance.

Posted by the Flea at 07:04 AM

September 25, 2007

Bomb 20

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It took a few years but I finally got round to watching Dark Star. I had not suspected John Carpenter of a phenomenological bent.

Posted by the Flea at 07:23 AM | Comments (4)

Gary Numan: Are Friends Electric

Now is the time at the Flea when we dance.

Also, Cars.

Posted by the Flea at 07:21 AM | Comments (1)

This gingerbread army wants to kick my ass

The haka, continued.

Posted by the Flea at 07:17 AM

September 24, 2007

Miss West Carolina speaks out

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On the subject of Maps; Paperlilies is a goddess, no matter what the haters say.

Posted by the Flea at 07:23 AM

Steely Dan: Kid Charlemagne

Now is the time at the Flea when we dance.

Posted by the Flea at 07:21 AM | Comments (3)

Another soul lost to BDS

Why I have delinked Scott Adams.

Posted by the Flea at 07:17 AM | Comments (1)

September 21, 2007

Chemical Brothers: Do It Again

Now is the time at the Flea when we dance.

Posted by the Flea at 06:54 AM | Comments (1)

September 20, 2007

The Amen Break

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Nate Harrison's smart documentary/installation piece, Can I Get An Amen? traces the history of a six-second break from The Winstons 1969 B-side "Amen Brother", the world's most important drum loop. The delivery is very dry but as someone trying to turn sampling into a living the content is fascinating.

Posted by the Flea at 06:57 AM

Red Army Choir: Kalinka

Now is the time at the Flea when we dance.

* And the t.A.T.u. rendition.

Posted by the Flea at 06:54 AM

September 19, 2007

The Guild

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The Guild is fun and, I suspect, not unrepresentative of on-line gaming life (Episode 1: Wake-Up Call, Episode 2: Zaboo'd, Episode 3: The Macro Problem).

Related, and most probably not work safe, Short Story Time: My Best Guess. Which stars Buffy alum, Felicia Day, pictured above as a Jedi chef. Ahem. And it turns out she really did play World of Warcraft.

I had a REALLY bad WOW addiction for almost 2 years. The life of an actor is either very busy or VERY SLOW, and I filled every second of the slow times with WOW. I knew it was bad when I was turning down professional opportunities to run MC with my alt :) So I had to stop for a while, cold turkey was the only way to go to get my life under control. The problem was I missed my Guildies a lot, that was why I played so much, because I enjoyed hanging out with them. I also thought that so many interesting types of people were online gamers, and that most the world was unaware of the whole sub-culture.
Posted by the Flea at 07:21 AM | Comments (1)

Suede: Animal Nitrate

Now it the time at the Flea when we dance.

Posted by the Flea at 07:17 AM

John Landis, John Carpenter & David Cronenberg

John Landis, John Carpenter & David Cronenberg were interviewed in 1982 for "Fear on Film", an episode of movie round-table Take One. Cronenberg's comparison of the American film rating system versus Ontario's censorship board is particularly telling and especially for those ideologues who grew up with this system yet still insist Canada qua Canada is more free than its southern neighbour* (Part 1, Part 2, Part 3).

* For example, Canada was the only Western democracy to seize The Satanic Verses at the border. It was Freedom To Read Week. You can explain this stuff to people and they will still go on about the Patriot Act about which they know not a single particular. Gramsci called this phenomenon "ideology".

Posted by the Flea at 07:14 AM

September 18, 2007

John Williams: Olympic Fanfare

Why we fight: So girls like Carly can have the opportunity to do this. Now is the time at the Flea when we dance (via Ace).

Posted by the Flea at 07:21 AM

Engage caterpillar drive

A look at the Typhoon; a vehicle I never expected to see in this detail. Awesome.

Posted by the Flea at 07:17 AM

September 17, 2007

Skypirate Regalia

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You ever find out about somebody who does what you do but does it so much better? Yeah, this guy. Vladislaus Dantes has upped the ante.

Mr Dantes, of the forum and DeviantArt, has created this most marvellous of Steampunk costumes! With a brass breastplate, back-mounted Aetheric Generator and really rather formiddable looking gun - this is a gentleman (or rather, a well spoken scoundrel) who would trawl the skies for tea and plunder in a Steampunk world. I very much admire the skill and detail that has gone into this - there are hinged pocket covers on the breastplate so that the pocketwatch may still be used, for example.
Posted by the Flea at 07:14 AM | Comments (16)

Suzie McNeil: Believe (Olympic inspired)

Now is the time at the Flea when we dance.

Posted by the Flea at 07:03 AM

September 14, 2007

How to pronounce "lich"

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A vexed question for adolescent gamers of the 1980s, how to pronounce the word lich, i.e. "a type of undead creature, usually an evil magician or powerful undead king, who has used evil rituals to bind their intellect to their animated corpse, thereby achieving a perverse form of immortality". It rhymes with witch, apparently. Kelandon explains the etymology.

Yes, the etymology is the difference. "Loch" is a borrowing from a Celtic language in which the fricative (like the German CH) existed. "Lich" is from an Old English word "lic" — originally pronounced like "lick" — that was eventually palatalized to "lich."

For those of you who read IPA, the OED gives the pronunciation as "lɪtʃ."

Various nerd parsing ensues. A clue should have been the plural as "liches", hard to pronounce any other way.

Posted by the Flea at 07:07 AM | Comments (8)

Dawn of Ashes: Torture Device

Now is the time at the Flea when we dance.

Posted by the Flea at 07:04 AM | Comments (1)

How to dance goth

The Flea's ongoing commitment to the explication of goth culture finds new heuristic promise in the form of these video illustrations. First, Pulling Cobwebs from the Ceiling at the 35 second mark; next, a demonstration of Grab the Bat, and, finally; a group practicing Kick the Smurf. I have yet to master the last one.

Posted by the Flea at 07:03 AM | Comments (7)

Club Sandwich seeks Tuna Fish Sandwich

You Are a Club Sandwich
You are have a big personality. It's hard for anyone to ignore you!
You dream big. You think big. And you eat big.
Some people consider you high maintenance, but you just know what you want... and when you want it.

Your best friend: The Tuna Fish Sandwich

Your mortal enemy: The Peanut Butter and Jelly Sandwich
What Kind of Sandwich Are You?

If any Phantom Strangers would care to share their sandwich preferences, I would be most curious to learn what they are (via White Peril, a Ham Sandwich).

Posted by the Flea at 07:00 AM | Comments (12)

September 13, 2007

Agonoize: Glaubenskrieger

Now it the time at the Flea when we dance.

Posted by the Flea at 07:04 AM

How to hide an airplane factory

How to hide an airplane factory... not something I had thought necessary against the Japanese; better safe than sorry (via Neptunus Lex).

During World War II the Army Corps of Engineers needed to hide the Lockheed Burbank Aircraft Plant to protect it from a Japanese air attack. They covered it with camouflage netting and trompe l'oeil to make it look like a rural subdivision from the air.
Posted by the Flea at 07:03 AM

September 12, 2007

Hotter than Fembots*

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They took a staple of the Gen-X childhood - an sf classic - and rebooted it with punched up blacks in the photography, shaky-cam verité, a dark storyline and called it Battlestar Galactica.

Now add The Matrix and do the same thing for The Bionic Woman. It even features Katee Sackhoff in the pilot. Seriously, this is freaking awesome.

* You heard me.

Posted by the Flea at 06:57 AM | Comments (5)

Sohodolls: Stripper

Now it the time at the Flea when we dance.

Posted by the Flea at 06:54 AM

He was turned to steel in the great magnetic field

Iron Man trailer: Kick ass! There is something profoundly satisfying when they get the myth right. Now, Dr. Strange, please (hat tip to Mr. Ash). One caveat, as Ace pointed out in his post on the subject, something at the Iron Man site crashes Firefox. Irritating.

Posted by the Flea at 06:53 AM | Comments (1)

September 11, 2007

We are just another damn song

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"Los Angeles, as I have stated elsewhere, is a city that might have been designed by eighth grade girls." So Theresa Duncan introduces Ghost Ships of Los Angeles, yet another small gem unearthed - new to me, at least - since her death (via Blogging.la).*

The lack of direct routes to the things one wants in Los Angeles is made up for by the fact that seemingly anybody can be in charge here. It is possible to control Los Angeles by being the one with the most vivid fantasy about it. You might be from the planet Venus and have been sent down as the heir apparent to the Queen of Los Angeles throne. And okay, if you say so. Because not only will not many contradict you, you will find people ready to believe it. The people of Los Angeles are often without neighbors they know or close friends or even a regular coffee hangout, but in this age of surveillance, moderation and nuclear family busy bodies, there is still a strange thrill to living in what may be the most unsupervised city in the United States. There’s no one around to see that the grand and historic Ambassador Hotel is preserved, let alone an empathic eye in the sky watching every sparrow fall.

And the converse just as true. A few busy-bodies' difference and Theresa and Jeremy Blake might still be creating things. Why does anyone commit suicide? And why these two in particular? Writing for Gawker, Choire offers a simple, arguably uncharitable but in a strong sense inarguable, point: "Not unexpectedly, no one as yet has an "answer." I do! You know why they killed themselves? Because they were fucked in the head. Just like everyone else who's ever killed himself." (hat tip to Agent Bedhead)

* And another moment via the LA Times.

Yesterday I came across a post from Sept. 27, 2005, illustrated with a photograph of Duncan and Blake together on a couch in their Venice cottage. Duncan was kneeling, facing Blake and holding a stethoscope to his chest. She explained that they'd been chosen by an artist who was collecting sound recordings of "lovers' heartbeats" and that the photograph was taken as she recorded Blake's. Duncan described the experience as "amazing, like staring through a telescope at a vast and previously undiscovered world. The beats sounded so powerful, and yet so temporary," she wrote. "We are just another damn song."
Posted by the Flea at 07:27 AM

Air: All I need

Now it the time at the Flea when we dance.

Posted by the Flea at 07:24 AM

The Sculptures of Stephane Halleux

MetaFilter describes the work of Belgian sculptor Stéphane Halleux as "Tim Burton meets Jules Verne."

Once upon a late evening, while cleaning my workroom, I realised how useful an assistant would be. Someone I could entrust with all the little tasks that were slowing down my work. From an old spin-dryer and an old German typewriter (cleanness, discipline) I created this robot. Pliers as a left hand; blowlamp, cutting disk, drill .... grafted onto the right hand. This new companion quickly showed himself extremely gifted.
Posted by the Flea at 07:23 AM

September 10, 2007

Gloriana Part Deux

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As I am giving the Toronto International Film Festival a miss, I will not be seeing Elizabeth: The Golden Age with the wanking horde but must content myself to see it with the hoi polloi. That would be the aching distance of four weeks during which self-appointed cinéastes will put on airs for having seen an Oscar contender that much sooner; as if it takes a crystal ball and years at the ICA to work out Kate Blanchett is worth a look.

The FFFs - film festival f*ckers - talk up the opportunity to partake in Iranian art-house offerings but they are there for the Hollywood product they pretend to disdain and a fleeting glimpse of the celebrity to which they fancy themselves superior. There are not just one or two of these sociopaths kicking around but teeming thousands holding up traffic for the duration. Tossers. Tossing tosspots*

Not premiering at the Toronto International Film Festival? Aliens Vs Predator: Requiem, a film sure to be objectively superior to nine out of ten TIFF offerings.

* Excepting artists, industry people and journalists who have a excuse to be subjected to it. And, I will concede, all two or three fans of Iranian cinema who might otherwise have to rent a video instead.

Posted by the Flea at 06:57 AM | Comments (2)

Girls Aloud: Sexy! No No No

Now it the time at the Flea when we dance (hat tip to Jeff).

Posted by the Flea at 06:54 AM

Jericho

Clive Barker´s Jericho trailer and gameplay footage is impressive but for some repetitive dialog. I am not one for first-person shooters but this looks right up my strasse.

Related: Clive Barker at Fangoria 2007 and hints at the forthcoming Midnight Meat Train.

Posted by the Flea at 06:53 AM

September 07, 2007

Gilt by association

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Commenting to his own posted at the Belmont Club, Wretchard considers an important reason elites avoid war; Canada's former Primer Minister - with his family connections to French oil and his representing Canadian oil in its business dealings with Iran - slouches to mind.

Consider this: maybe the real reason to avoid war, even in self-defense, is the same reason the Tsarist Empire had reason to avoid war back in 1914. The necessity of never having to put the corrupt parts of the system to the test. The Great War showed up all the secret deals, all the seedy connections, all the unthinkable compromises into which the Russian elite had entered. The revelations the Great War laid bare discredited an entire ruling class.

By request of the Czar, Dr. H. H. Horne and his wife brought his X-ray apparatus to the palace of Nicholas II at St. Petersburg in the winter of 1898. "... according to Mrs. Horne, the equipment overloaded the palace’s electrical system, and she inadvertently bumped into the Czar in the darkness."

Tag-line and image of the hand of Nicholas II - The Lloyd E. Hawes Collection in the History of Radiology at the Harvard Medical Library.

Posted by the Flea at 07:44 AM

Patrick Wolf: The Libertine

Shades of Morrissey. Now is the time at the Flea when we dance.

Posted by the Flea at 07:41 AM

September 06, 2007

Smashing Pumpkins: 1979

Now is the time at the Flea when we dance.

Posted by the Flea at 07:03 AM

Karma and dogma

Flares into Darkness considers the consequences of sitting out an election. All the way back to Jerry Ford... (via Instapundit from whence the tag-line).

Karma is much misunderstood in the West: people have learned to use it as a synonym for "fate" or "predestination". A New-Age person may say "it must been karma". George Harrison wrote about "instant karma gonna get you". Someone responds to a misfortune saying "ooh, bad karma, man!" But karma isn't "fate" — it's cause and effect. There's no need for a mysterious fate, for Gods of Karma to decide your punishments and rewards for your bad or good deeds — it's like billiards. Each ball goes to its next position, determined by what happened before: that's karma.
Posted by the Flea at 07:01 AM

September 05, 2007

Gothic Hilary Duff

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This post: Soon to be number one for "goth Hilary Duff", "gothic Hilary Duff", "vampire Hilary Duff" or some such variation on the similar. It may be a small dream but such is the advantage of an exceedingly specific ambition. More Hilary Duff evidence here; I point to the black nail polish as only one notable feature. Why is Hilary Duff "trying to be sexy" ask some of the on-line detractors for her new look? Well, for one thing there is being hot as hell. Also, a genius for promotion. I have no idea what a "tropical mangosteen blossom" might be still less am familiar with its "luminous" scent but am reasonably certain it is appealing. Can't go wrong with amber milk.

Now is the time at the Flea when we dance.

Posted by the Flea at 07:07 AM | Comments (9)

Variations on a theme

The Drink Soaked Trots discover Rabble; hilarity ensues.

Related: Three hours of the Hitch on C-SPAN earlier this year. I am delighted, obviously, by a passage where he denounces pacifism as an immoral ideology which would seek to disarm us in the face of our enemies; enemies it is our duty to destroy (which is exactly correct). But my favourite part of the piece is the tenth segment in which Christopher Hitchens introduces the Wyoming and his Washington apartment.

Posted by the Flea at 07:03 AM

September 04, 2007

Underground

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My dates for the next couple months... September 13: Fuck'd!!! is a new noise night and, having said I would come up with some old school industrial, my set is turning out orchestral instead; I have been listening to too much Venetian Snares. September 27 is my last scheduled gig at Savage Garden as Technical Glitch moves to a new venue. This one is going to be big; worth the price of admission for VOSQQ alone, a celebration of gothic violin! October 30: This All Hallow's Eve-Eve show is my debut appearance at The Drake Hotel*; it is an honour to be invited to play The AMBiENT PiNG.

September 13
Fuck’d!!! at Savage Garden
Tropizm, Brother Rat, Ghost of a flea, Sighup, Toronto Noise Company, Cauterwall, Dysenteryaki Deadtone
Doors open at 8. I will be on at 9 sharp.

September 27
Technical Glitch at Savage Garden
VOSQQ, Synkro, Sincere Trade, Moonbase, Laf-O, Ghost of a flea
Doors open at 8. I will be on at 9 ish.

October 30
The AMBiENT PiNG at The Drake Underground
Ghost of a flea and NOT_digital
Doors open at 8.

* Related: Russel Smith on hotels and literature. I like the idea of a hotel room as a stage and a hotel room as an anonymous place to write. A good part of the music I have been working on for the last two months was put together in the departure lounges of Ottawa International Airport; non-places can be good to get out of your head... Though as the Drake is clearly meant to be an updated Chelsea - Agent Bedhead's comparison - it lacks the anonymity Smith is describing. Which is ironic if only in an Alanis kind of way.

Posted by the Flea at 07:44 AM | Comments (2)

Tracy Ullman: They Don't Know

Now is the time at the Flea when we dance.

Posted by the Flea at 07:43 AM

Elvish Girls Gone Wild

The Jawas feature hot girls of Blizzcon 2007.

Requires Divx (Safe for Middle Earth but not for Narnia).
Posted by the Flea at 07:41 AM

September 03, 2007

Voluptuous-but-disheveled

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This somewhat belated coverage of the latest, much-maligned Harry Potter film resulted from a delay in tracking down the appropriate illustrative image. I believe it was worth the wait. It took a note from J.K. Rowling* to convince Helena Bonham Carter to take on the part of Bellatrix Lestrange for Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix. With three lines in the film she decided she needed to be "voluptuous-but-disheveled" thereby meeting the Flea-ideal.

"At first they thought, 'Oh, we'll just put her in a sack,''' Bonham Carter said. "But I said, 'There's no way I'm going to wear a sack. I've got to be a sexy witch.'''

"I wanted a sort of bodice thing to give me a shape,'' she said. "There is a bit of the warrior about her - Bellatrix means warrior. She's the right-hand Death Eater to Voldemort.

"I also wanted everything to be splitting at the seams and a bit of `Sunset Boulevard' disintegration to be going on, because she's been in prison for so long. She has a very posh, aristocratic carriage, because she's pureblooded, but at the same time she's completely divorced from reality.''

* Minor spoiler for Book 7 at both links.

This trailer for a better end to Harry Potter and Deathly Hallows is also somewhat belated.

Posted by the Flea at 08:33 AM | Comments (2)

Monteverdi: Sinfonie Ritornelli and Orfeo's aria

Now is the time at the Flea when we dance.

Posted by the Flea at 08:27 AM