Saturday, December 31, 2005

Holy crap! Detroit News Artist of the Week
:)

Happy new year to all! It's ten minutes to midnight, eastern standard time, and I hope nobody is at home in Detroit reading this right now, because you should all be at the Dorkwave New Year's Gala. Myslef and Bethany are currently hanging out in SF with Nix, planning some trouble of our own and waiting for the drunken phone calls from Detroit to start rolling in momentarily.

Part of me would like to be there for Dorkwave tonight, but I wouldn't trade this weekend for anything. Hiking out to the Muir Beach Overlook in 70mph winds, navigating switchbacks and falling rocks (for real) on the Pacific Coastal Highway, followed by an afternoon at the spa, excellent company, excellent food, has been... well, pretty darn excellent. Pictures and details soon.

There's a party tonight. You should come out.


Directions.

Wednesday, December 28, 2005

Our very own Rob Theakston gives up the Dorkwave current top five in this week's Metro Times Head Cheese column.

awesome band alert:

Image hosted by Photobucket.com

The Heavycoats are making waves across the pond in the UK, and oddly enough...they're american! Be still my heart.

Kindly maniac Ryan Elliott presents his 2005 Top 10:

1. Popnebo/ Faceline/ Anorak Tontrager
2. CloserMusik/ 1,2,3-No Gravity (Ewan Pearson's Acid Mix)/ Out Of The Loop
3. Audion/ Just Fucking/ Spectral
4. Und/ Ambivalente/ Defrag
5. Daso/ T. Anders/ My Best Friend
6. Avus/ Tear/ Klang
7. Solvent/ Think Like Us (Alter Ego rmx.)/ Ghostly
8. Heartthrob/ Golum/ Minus
9. Loco Dice/ Menina Brasileira/ Ovum
10. Wessling & Schrom/ Donauwellen (MANDY rmx.)/ Boxer

Tuesday, December 27, 2005

I think I might have just died and found my personal music geek heaven. Minimal Wave is a website and label dedicated to documenting the history of minimal synth, new wave, cold wave, minimal electronik, post punk, proto-industrial and synthpunk music. [Not to be confused with minimal techno] Minimal Wave is a resource and community for both fans of and those curious about bands such as Absolute Body Control, Fiction Technology, Snowy Red, The Neon judgment, Crash Course in Science and the like.

The Minimal Wave record label recently put out their first release, a four track EP of early work by Oppenheimer Analysis, and will soon be offering hand printed t-shirts from contemporary synth heroes 2VM: our old friends Veronica Vasicka and Marc Houle.

+ check ouy the awesome video clips of Liaisons Dangereuese and Snowy Red.

Monday, December 26, 2005

checking out the tom waits vid i came across one from my "man of the year 2005", MF DOOM

best gift i got is Made in Detroit : A South of 8 Mile Memoir, a book by PAUL CLEMENS who, like myself, grew up white in an increasingly black city. so far the book is worth it for its insights on the downfall of the city alone, although its most startling efforts are such frank views as his "having been born with not only the Catholic version of original sin but the white American version of it as well."

Tonight!



The fourth annual UNTITLED FOR THE HOLIDAYS
(Has it really been that long? Yes.)

MONDAY DECEMBER 26, 2005

celebrating music + drinks + bad behavior

untitled residents: MIKE SERVITO, RYAN ELLIOTT

introducing, untitled residents: ERIC CLOUTIER, GREG MUDGE, SCOTT BRANDON, SETH TROXLER

featuring: LEE CURTISS [live]

Alvin's | 5756 cass ave. | detroit, mi. | 18+ |9p | $5

BLACKBX | GHOSTLY

For those who aren't familiar with what Doc is referencing, there was a grandiose plan to light up the Broderick Tower with thousands and thousands and thousands of feet of christmas lights last year. It was incredibly close to becoming a reality, but there were "issues" with getting power to the 35 story extension cord. Would have been spectacular.

Sunday, December 25, 2005

Merry Christmas to all!

DetroitBlog features some shots of holiday decorations from the city's historic neighborhoods, and a recent re-visit to the David Broderick Tower, one of our personal favorites.

+ this isn't exactly new, but if you haven't seen it yet, Tom Waits has a gorgeous video for God's Away on Business. Just the right thing for holiday cheer. (In my house anyway, but Doyles are weird like that.) You can't go wrong with emus.

Saturday, December 24, 2005

Some Christmas cheer from out dear friends at Ghostly International, in the form of three free holiday mp3s for you:

Cepia
Outputmessage
Benoit Pioulard

Detroit saturday mornings totally belong to Bethanys hood at the Russell Street Deli

Friday, December 23, 2005

Since we're not doing a Best of 05 feature on Burnlab, below is the list I just submitted for Liz Copeland's excellent site Audio Interference. (Burnlab editors and readers are still more than invited to submit your year end list to the Lab Reort.)


TOP 5 SINGLES

M83 - "Teen Angst" - EMI
Best song for impossibly slow goth dancing with grandiose arm gestures since (everything on) The Cocteau Twins' Heaven or Las Vegas LP.

Vitalic - "My Friend Dario" - Different Recordings
Most likely to induce air guitar playing in your underwear. Genius. Who said Electroclash was dead?

800 Beloved (formerly Inlieuof) - "Galaxies" - unreleased
Milford Michigan based songwriter/funeral director/producer extraordinaire Sean Lynch crafts a post-punk/shoegazer classic here that just sends shivers up your spine.

Pas/Cal - "O Honey We're Ridiculous" - Romantic Air/Le Grand Magistery
From their forthcoming (and LONG awaited) debut LP, this quickly became a personal anthem for Ms. Toybreaker and I. Every word totally hits home - and the fact that it's one the best pop songs ever written doesn't hurt either. I put this on the same level as the best from Pulp, Blur and The Cars. Seriously.

Noise Tank (Loves You) - "Rabbit's Dead, Easter Day" - Focus Media
Noise Tank's obsessive production and clever song writing makes them probably the most promising new band from Detroit this year. Blending such odd influences as His Name is Alive, Aphex Twin and Belle and Sebastian, their "spazz-pop" sound, and lyrics ripe with both teen innocence and sophisticated irony are the right thing, in the right place, at the right time.


TOP 5 ALBUMS

Vitalic - "OK Cowboy" - Different Recordings
Hands down. Shove your freedom fries you know where. The French rule.

LCD Soundsystem - "LCD Soundsystem" - DFA
Well worth the wait. Dorkwave's NYC brothers and sisters in arms.

The Neon Judgement - "Box" - PIAS
A sort of reissue, yes, but more relevant that most new music this year... and '05 was a really good year. Box provides a comprehensive view of this much overlooked act that influenced everyone from Front 242 and Sisters of Mercy, to Terrence Fixmer and Chicks on Speed.

We Are Wolves - "Non-Stop Je Te Plie En Deux" - The Mintaka Conspiracy
Just as good as the French, and even weirder, French-Canadians rocked my world this year. Huge thanks to Cowboy Mark for turning me on to these guys. "T.R.O.U.B.L.E." was an instant Dorkwave staple in '05, although I don't think anyone besides Mark really understands just how awesome this record is.

Kill Memory Crash - "American Automatic" - Ghostly International
Ellen Allien - "Thrills" - BPitch Control
Adult. - "Gimme Trouble" - Thrill Jockey
It was impossible to decide between these three for the number five spot, and I didn't want to bore you all with a full top 10. All three artists showed us a much expanded creative realm with this year's releases. Three total must-haves that people will be scratching their heads over for a good while, and putting on their Best of the Decade lists five years from now.


TOP 5 REDISCOVERIES/NOT-SO-GUILTY PLEASURES

Old favorites, often dismissed for their high cheese-factor, that shaped my world this year:

The Human League - "Together in Electric Dreams"
The theme from the wonderful mid-1980's film Electric Dreams, with an equally wonderful keytar solo, this is the ultimate geek love song. Dethany and I ditched an overcrowded party downtown in favor of Albion/Batcave (NYC's most infamous goth night) this summer, and proceeded to create an interpretive waltz to this track - if memory serves correct - screaming the lyrics at the top of our lungs and falling down repeatedly... um, yeah.

Eurythmics - "Love is a Stranger"
So dirty. So good.

Killing Joke - "Love Like Blood"
If you know DethLab, this is obvious. Toybreaker and I dropped this at the exact moment we busted out the blood filled squirt guns and proceeded to soak each other and everyone within range one fateful evening at Foran's Irish Pub. The rest is history. Mr. Sean Lynch commented, "I ran my ass to church after that night."

Peter Murphy - "I'll Fall With Your Knife"
I've personally criticized the Bauhaus front man for slipping into the realms of "adult contemporary" with some of his solo releases, but cheesy as it is, this track is such a finely crafted anthem, you can't help but to love it.

Smashing Pumpkins - "Wound"
From Mr. Corgan and company's not-so-acclaimed final Pumpkins release. Frankly, I think this one of his best efforts, and some of his strongest song writing to date. The lyrics...ehhh, but the arrangements and chord progressions on this album, this song in particular, are sheer genius. I've actually been dissecting Machina note by note because its just so damn good - if you're thinking about writing some really complex and catchy love anthems. I have to close my eyes and tilt my head back to truly revel in this song, which is not always the wisest thing to do when driving 80 mph on Interstate 75.

When Dethlab finally releases an EP of original songs, is it going to be filled with sappy acoustic-electronic power ballads?! Um... we'll see. I have no idea what the cheese-tastic bass lines and rhythms I've been cobbling together will sound like once we run everything through Toybreaker's circuit-bent laboratory, and Lynchy's Fender Baritone. I'm guessing somewhere between My Bloody Valentine, early Skinny Puppy, and Serge Gainsborough, but there's really no telling at this point.

I'm sure most of our readers have already seen Pitchfork's Year End Round-Up, and have discussed it it death, so little point here... well, except... I was morbidly pleased to see two of my favorite releases on their Worst Releases of 2005 list:

Daft Punk - Technologic
"Daft Punk sounded their potential death knell with the brain-sucking inanity of a Hewlett Packard commercial singing the McDonald's Big Mac theme song. Like watching an ambulance crash into a garbage truck."

M83 - Car Chase Terror!
"The result is something like being punched in the face over and over again, the catastrophically unlistenable pretentious art-house equivalent of a sub-Wyclef hip-hop skit."

Sweet.
Both just got bumped five slots up on my most played list.

xoxo

Thursday, December 22, 2005

Lacie, the harddrive company that almost sent me into fits with the f.a. porsche designed drive has now caused a full on rupture with it's new harddrive design that looks like legos.

They come in white too. I am going to go and justify this to my credit card now.

from around the blogosphere:

Revell TURBO wall art
[via Core77]

Cut and Paste contest results
[via Protein OS]

The Wrong Gallery moves to the Tate
[via Archinect]

James Tichenor
[via Cool Hunting]

Norman Foster to design second tower on WTC site
[via Curbed]

Quick PSA here:

We will not be doing an official Best of '05 feature on Burnlab this year, but I DO welcome all Burnlab contributors to post your reflections on the past year as you see fit in the regular blog format.

Quite simply, I don't have the time to maintain any Burnlab features beyond the Lab Report, and as many of you know, my trusty TiBook suffered a fatal "head crash" just as I was assembling the Best of '04 feature earlier this year, and lost everyone's lists as a result. My sincerest apologies to Chad Clark, Lynnel Herrera, and everyone who put a lot of time and thought into that project. Computers are fragile, and I'm incredibly bad about backing thing up on a regular basis.

One day soon I will indeed update the site to modern blog standards, with RSS and all that stuff people keep asking about. (I still don't know what the hell RSS is or why I should care, but people keep asking... so it's something I should learn about apparently. This site started in 2000, and my web authoring skills are frozen in that time.) In the mean time, the Lab Report remains the lifeblood of this site, and the number one resource for the intersection of art, design, music and culture for way more pepole than I know, and I thank our loyal readers for making this effort all worthwhile. Most importantly, I promise everyone can rely on that service for a good long time from this site. We're not going away anytime soon.

If you're feeling nostalgic, here is the Best of '03 review, which was a very good year in a lot of respects. Personally, '05 kicked '03s ass, but that has everything to do with me finding happiness both personally and professionally, which has everything to do with not having time for anything else. Being in a position where there is zero compromise and nothing but creative and spirtual satisfaction in personal and professional matters is a wondrous, wondrous thing. On that note, I nominate 2005 as the best year ever... so far. We (meaning you, our beloved readers, and us, the beloved editorial staff) have many years ahead to take grand adventures with, question everything, and make the world a much more interesting place. (have I mentined I'm giddy as hell that my first music project, this thing called Dorkwave, is working with Elliott freaking Earls next month?!?!)

'06 is already shaping up to steal the Best Year Evah award.

Happy holidays

Tuesday, December 20, 2005

More on the United Artists Building and it's painted windows at the venerable DetroitBlog.

Next step, awnings: "It'll be clean, but it'll still be vacant"

Monday, December 19, 2005

Happy Holidays from Tom Waits and Peter Murphy

(Okay, not totally true, but no less awesome.)

"[Golden Kitsch is] aimed at the subversion of mass media and the emersion of impractical thought into pop-culture. We promote constructive hedonism and the explication of abstract thought."

It is also a wonderfully disturbing and cleverly crude zine in the grand tradition.

The contents of the current issue are not online, but ask around town - these kids can probably hook you up. I made several attempts to transcribe parts of it in a way that would not offend our entire readership and still be funny, but that's just not happening. Next time you see David Blunk though, ask him about falling asleep in the White Castle drive-thru.



Ms. Toybreaker and I are getting far away from the frozen tundra of the midwest for New Year's, but our fellow dorks will be providing Detroit with the most wonderous of celebrations this fair city has seen in generations.

We are proud to present to you the Dorkwave New Year's Eve Gala.

(Big thanks to Doc for the splendid design.)

Friday, December 16, 2005

Tonight in Detroit: Our friends at The Undercover Eskimo Collective present spaz-pop-electro-punk icon Mu tonight at Oslo, with the Undercover Eskimo Deejay Tagteam Squad.



Oslo
1456 Woodward Ave., Detroit
10pm | 18+ | $10


Also tonight: The Contemporary Art Institute of Detroit hosts Linen Party, a night of no-wave, italo-disco, 80s garage and more. Featured DJs include greenSKY, Carl Lucas and Scott Zacharias.



CAID
5141 Rosa Parks Blvd., Detroit
11PM | 18+ | $5 donation


If you happen to be in Ann Arbor this evening, you may be interested in the 2005 Zombie Claus meeting at Bab's Underground. (On a somewhat related note, eatbrains.com is the best URL ever.)



I had the great pleasure of meeting Squirrel Jeff last night. Squirrel Jeff is a sculpture student at the Cranbrook Academy of Art. He has been been wearing a squirrel suit, foraging for food and living the life of a squirrel for three weeks. Squirrel Jeff used to be Hawaii Jeff. Hawaii Jeff had never seen squirrels before moving to Michigan, and was fascinated by our furry rodent friends. Not everyone is Squirrel Jeff's friend. Bear is mean to Squirrel and steals his food. "Bear is big and strong, but squirrel is fast and cunning," Squirrel Jeff explained during a PowerPoint presentation, never breaking the dead-pan tone of a film-strip narrator... not even when showing the construction paper bear traps he set out for his ursine rival.

Thursday, December 15, 2005

Today's re-discovery:



(We're so playing this Saturday.)

Our good friend (and fellow troublemaker) Kendra, based in nyc, will be performing with Traxx this Friday night in Chicago.

kendra1205lava

10pm - 2am | Lava Lounge | 859 N Damen Ave. | Chicago, IL | 21+ | FREE!

Wednesday, December 14, 2005

Speaking of Cranbrook (referencing three posts down,) Dorkwave will be performing at the Music Hall in Detroit on Saturday, January 28th, following 2D design artist in residence Elliott Earls' performance of Bull and Wonded Horse, a new multimedia piece Mr. Earls has been develolping over the past year. This will be a preview of Elliott's Capacitor Festival: An Intersection of Art, Music and Technology, to take place in September.



Robotic Drums and Guitar, Interactive digital video, and electronics comingle in a melange of pop songs, spoken word poetry and acoustic music. Elliott will be performing with his new acoustic ensemble "The Venemous Sons of Jonah," creating a strange brew of robotic and completely organic music.

Produced in Association with Cranbrook Academy of Art, the 2006 Capacitor Festival is an evening of performance and installation that focuses on the intersection of visual art, technology and music. Featuring performers and artists at the vanguard of this intersection, the evening explores what happens when the visual arts collide with music.


I'm totally thrilled to be involved in this event for a lot of reasons: one of my most formative experiences as a child was seeing Mummenschanz at the Music Hall, many years later I exchanged correspondence with Elliott when I first moved to NYC, as a fan of his work in Emigre when he still lived in Connecticut and was performing at HERE, a wonderful DIY gallery/performance space in New York, and even later discovered he was neighbors with my lovely partner, who was also brought from CT to Michigan by Cranbrook. An of course, Burnlab has been all about this sort of media collison since it's inception. It's pretty darn cool when everything comes together just so, and the opportunity to do work with people one has the greatest of respect for works out just right.

More details on the the Capacitor Festival soon.

i know....long time no post...i've been busy. it's no excuse, but i hope those of you in nyc can accept this as a small token of my affection.

Image hosted by Photobucket.com

The Wired Shop
160 Wooster @ Houston
6-9PM
rsvp here

This Ain't for Everyone.

PAS/CAL is featured on the cover of Real Detroit Weekly today. Casimer talks about the band's obsessive take on everything from writing and recording, to style and artwork, how much he hates summertime, and how people often miss the sinister undertones of their seemingly cheerful music. Real Detroit also has an interview with Sean McCabe, the man behind PAS/CAL's "Baroque Misfit Pop" visual identity. For even more on the band's unique work habits, visit their official blog.

DethLab can hardly wait for this Saturday's Christmas Special at the Lager House. We've been fortunate to play with so many of our favorite artists over the past few months, and we can't think of a better way to celebrate the season than with fellow sinister obsessives PAS/CAL and share gingerbread cookies, hot toddies and some fine music with all our good friends in Detroit.

The studio was extremely fortunate to receive a private tour of Charles and Ray Eames' home and studio by their grandson, Eames Demetrios this past Saturday in California. Some photos of the house here.





The thing that always inspired me most about Charles and Ray was not the fact that they created some of the most important furniture of the 20th century and pioneered processes that would influence how we design well into this century. It was how they applied a holistic, expressive approach to every aspect of their work and lives. They were never afraid to experiment in different medias and disciplines, invented processes along the way, and seemed to take their work and life together as an adventure of their own creation, where anything was possible and everything was extraordinary. It was a real treat to see the tumbleweed the couple had picked up while driving from Cranbrook to Los Angeles on their honeymoon, one of the first of many objects, both precious and everyday, which Charles and Ray collected for inspiration. (Sorry I don't have a pic of the tumbleweed - we weren't supposed to shoot photos inside the house.)

Tuesday, December 13, 2005

Trailer for Sofia Coppola's Marie Antoinette, complete with "Power, Corruption & Lies" soundtrack. Nicely done.

The 2005 CAID Actual Size Biennial, Volume 2 exhibition has been extended to December 17, 2005. Gallery hours are Saturday from 12pm to 6pm or by appointment.



Detroit Tall Tales Clock

Monday, December 12, 2005

Saturday, December 10, 2005

Reminder, tonight!
Saturday December 10, 2005
Coitus Interruptus presents: S A S S

Sass December 10 - Back

Sass December 10 - Back

Oslo | 1456 Woodward | Detroit, MI | 18+ | $5 | 10PM-?

Give a Little...

Thursday, December 08, 2005




Brand Me



DIY MTA Signs

Field Studies in Business Class or When Screaming Babies Grow Up

I'm writing this from an AirBus bound for LAX. Sitting across the aisle are two salesmen for an indeterminable product or service. One is the seasoned account executive, and the other is the hungry young protege. The species in question almost always travels in this formation, but sometimes with a sulky designer sitting back in coach noodling away on a PowerBook and dreading having to share a taxi and pehaps a meal at somewhere nice like Hooters with the two upon arrival. The vast wisdom of the elder (not much older than me, wearing pressed jeans and dock siders) is shared with the apprentice at his side with great enthusiasm and volume - meaning both plentiful and loudly. We have been in the air for approximately two hours, with three to go. In this time, I have been treated to such fine examples of the english language as "six and one half dozen of the other", "on the same page", "at the end of the day", "political capital" and countless other gems. What is most fascinating about this particular breed is their ability to have lengthy conversations entirely strung together by a series of cliches, puns and buzz words from trade journals and business weeklies. There is truly no sentiment which cannot be expressed by cutting and pasting catch phrases, and it is with great mastery that these phrases are assembled into what seem like sentences and delivered with such confidence that one must conclude that deliverer is a great expert on the fascinating matter at hand, whatever that matter may be. The strings of cliches are further punctuated by stating painfully obvious facts as if they are brilliant revelations, precluded by a pause to assure proper attention. It is with much appreciation on my part that the elder speaks at such a volume that not only he can hear how good he sounds, but every single person within ten rows can appreciate his insights and clever anecdotes - which are almost as hilarious as a Family Circus cartoon. ("Ooh, that feisty Not Me is up to it again!") Yes, these are the guys who the ads in the backs of airline magazines for motivational seminars and monogramed dick warmers... oops, I mean Blackberry holders... are written for. I have a ball point pen pressed against my jugular right now, just in case the phrase "think outside the box" is uttered.

Wednesday, December 07, 2005

Yesterday I had a burrito for lunch.
Tomorrow I will probably have a sandwhich.
Right now I'm drinking generic english breakfast tea.












I'm the best.

Finally a spare moment from deadline heck to report in...

Last Thursday's Loose Tooth offered some extra special Detroit flavor with guest DJs Trent with cease and desist t-shirt barons Randy & Moss.

Get yo asses online and buy a Trent t-shirt from these two. Madatory attire for the next Dorkwave party.

Good pics and wrap-up by the Pink Man himself at the bottom of this link.

Discovered Scottdale, AZ this weekend with it's awesome Shake party, strip clubs and dirt cheap motel suites. Felt extra dorkwave spinning on a beer damaged Gemini turntable with a motor so weak you had to get the platter spinning manually, THEN engage the motor. Still, great party - even if some girl with bangs called me "gay" for playing Janet Jackson. Oh, and Dokken didn't show up, wussies.

Plenty of action this week in LA, perfect for entertaining sir Michael de Dethlab. Loose Tooth offers the URB Holiday Party with guest Princess Superstar and James F!@$%^ Friedman whose Go Commando CD is one of the better mixes you'll score this Xmas.

And all week, Paper Project LA offers hipster aerobics to go along with those art geek cocktail parties and panels.

Tuesday, December 06, 2005

And now on to Old Buildings Falling down...

Yesterday the folks I met from couchsurfing.com had just come from exploring the Studebaker Plant in South Bend, Indiana. They came with some incredible shots - although the architecture looked stunningly similar to Detroit's Packard Plant, what made it appear so strikingly different from the Packard (or any Detroit building for that matter) was how intact the contents of the building were. Little or nothing was scrapped. The dies for car doors were still scattered about. What looked like fields of hundreds (thousands?) of car engines were still intact, in neat rows, fan blades eerily pointing the same direction. Paper ephemera still in boxes, everywhere. Algebraic figures on whiteboards still proclaming their pale red and green calculations.

I had been through Fisher Body 21 last Spring with the rest of the Team Burnlab Alice in Wonderland Absurdists, so this was my second trip to the building. We found the appopriate entrances and stairwells pretty quickly, once somewhat stealthily passing one of the building's winter residents who had quite the little campfire set up. We decided it best to head right up to the uppermost floors to escape the smoke of unknown composition that was lingering around the first and second floors.

fisher21_037
fourth floor

fisher21_072
sixth floor

Many more and far too long of a post about it here.

While I'm on this obvious darkwave/shoegaze kick for the season, if you're not familiar with Loveliescrushing, imagine if My Bloody Valentine made all the records you really wish they did after Loveless. (Blasphemy! I know, but for real...)

Oh my god, those clips of Blixa for Hornbach are indeed the best thing ever. THE BEST!!! I can't stop watching them over and over. (Two posts down: Click!)

I'll be working out of the Venice office Thursday through Saturday. I'm hoping to make time to meet up with the Burnlab LA crew and some old friends while in town. Unfortunately I won't have my own car, so you'll either have to kick it west side or pick my ass up. :)

Blixa Bargeld is now starring in the Hornbach DIY campaign, this is so much cooler than Homer and NASCAR, darlings of that US home improvement giant. He reads the DIY catalog of the Hornbach Home Improvement Superstore. (2004 Epica award winner.)

More here | here | and here. This is seriously the best thing i've ever seen on the internets. (And the last one...wow.)

Winter music

Is there really any better label to curl up by the fire and watch snow fall to on these dark cold nights, awash with guitar fuzz and dreamy synthesizers than the esteemed 4AD? (Albeit I don't actually have a fireplace, but the thought completes the picture.)

I recently came across this excellent illustrated history of 4AD's first 20 years, complete with Mr. Vaughan Oliver's extraordinary artworks.

For those really wintery evenings though, nothing compares to Lycia's Cold LP. (Yeah, ohmygawth. Sush.)

I can't understand why people are frightened of new ideas. I'm frightened of the old ones.

- http://www.quotationspage.com/quotes/John_Cage

Monday, December 05, 2005

Study finds coffee reduces liver risks.

Back before everyone's techno was a series of loops of minimal bloops, there was a small label by the name of Applied Rhythmic Technology (or ART) that quietly released one classic single after another, and helped to reshape the perception of techno as we know it. Spearheaded by Kirk Degiorgio (aka As One, Elegy, etc.) the label would cease production in the mid to late nineties. Many of these records go for a pretty penny on the market today.

Fast forwarding a bit, DeGiorgio and co-conspirator Alex Bond have issued the The Electric Institute; a compilation of both old from the label's original artists and new tracks from artists heavily influenced by them. Easily one of the best electronic music compilations of the year. And to boot, the dude from Coldplay jams with Degiorgio on a few tracks.

Samples can be found here.

Friday, December 02, 2005



MASS Music Dome is a multimedia performance created by MASS Ensemble and o2 Creative Solutions. MASS Ensemble designs and creates innovative architectural scale stringed instruments and kinetic performances, including the Earth Harp. o2 is an experience design firm which combines design, communications and technology to create unique immersive, sensory and interactive experiences.

MASS Music Dome combines the expertise of the two groups to provide a one-of-a-kind performance inside a geodesic dome on the Santa Monica Pier for two weeks, including custom instruments, dance, and integrated visuals which are triggered by the performance itself.

Shows run through this weekend and December 7-11. Tickets and more information available at massmusicdome.com

This just screams "Rob Theakston".

One of those "Damn, I wish I designed that!" moments.

i'm back in detroit so i cn actually see this: TONI TAKITANI, a film based on a short story by HARUKI MURAKAMI, who's latest novel KAFKA ON THE SHORE has me enthralled as usual.

p.s...anything interesting going on in d-town this weekend??

Mixes mixes mixes abound today.

This one's for my peepz: Pacou recently did a mix featuring the works and remixes of Carl Craig. A nice survey of Carl's career.

Local guys holding it down: Greg Mudge and a tech-house-dub mix from Element 8 that's been getting quite the buzz locally.

While not necessarily my style, Detrot's favorite gun toting DJ Darkcube throws down a set of jungle/d&b/call it what you want. Works really well during those more aggressive workouts and moments of sheer anger towards humanity.Download here.

And finally, for those who still need their mix cravings quenched, Ryan Elliott mixes the back catalog of Minimise's excellent color series.


Detroit: Where our DJs don't suck.

Thursday, December 01, 2005

If you're feeling sinister...

The Second Biennial PAS/CAL Christmastime Special
Saturday, December 17

Pas/Cal (live)
Johnny Headband (live)
DethLab (djs)

Expect plenty of festive decor, Christmas cookies and punch, twinkling lights, jingling bells, musical selections spanning decades upon centuries, the Savory and the Sweet, garnishes, trimmings, presents... and all manner of Hors d'oeuveres.

Lager House, 1254 Michigan Ave., (Corktown) Detroit, MI
only $6 / doors at 9pm

I was a little surpised when Burgundy asked us to play.
"You know, we play a lot darker than Dorkwave... just don't want any confusion." I said.
"Perfect," Nathaniel replied. "We want sinister."
"Oh, we'll give you sinister." Bethany said with a grin.
And there you have it.

Now, I don't anticipate this being the sort of uber-crunch-o-matik set we'd do for say, Chemlab, but there will be plenty of eeevil. Probably Black Celebration, Pornography sorta stuff. For the holidays. But we'll see how it goes. We can't not play some uber-cheese elektro-rawk and ghey-wave...

And of course we <3 Pas/Cal.

And for those DIY types who need to rock it old school:

Modding an Atari 2600 JOYstick

(Note: equally as not-work-safe)

iBuzz music activated sex toy "plugs into any music player to let you enjoy your music like never before!"

About as work inappropriate as you would think.

[via Core77]

Just how slow are trend-spotters? This week The Zandi Group released their list of top consumer trends for 2006. Topping the list? Taxidermy. (Duh.) Some rather baffling new trends included mid-century modern design, artisan cheeses and indie movies. I'd say something like "thanks for ruining a few of my favorite things," but I just can't picture your average WAL MART shopper munching on $20/lb. cheese in a Jacobsen Egg chair, while watching Peter Greenaway films.

Oh, just wait though. There is a will and a way to dumb down and bastardize everything. I'm sure Michael Graves is already hard at work on some powder blue plastic deer head air fresheners.

To be honest though, I would probably buy that... but definitely not the Quarter Pounder with Manchego and McFrites and Super-Sized Syrah.

[via Style.com]


For the Goth who has everything

Haikyo Deflation Spiral, an "urban exploration" site which presents itself as an online photo museum. Haikyo means "ruin" in Japanese, and defure is a Japanese-English word suggesting that these buildings are gently "deflating" over time.

HEL LOOKS is selected street fashion from Helsinki, the capital of Finland. The pictures are taken in the streets and clubs of Helsinki from July 2005 onwards. HEL LOOKS is a hobby project of Liisa Jokinen and Sampo Karjalainen. The project is a tribute to Fruits and Street magazines, the pioneers of street fashion photography.

Also check out the totally hot holiday collection from Morphine Generation.

I like the copper screen ink on this tweed jacket.

Check out the Cool Hunting Holiday Gift Guide.

I'm quite fond of the antler table lamp, the John Derian pencil trays, the Sailor Jerry Chucks, and of course, the skull hand towels.


Most poignant throwaway line of the month:

"Detroit ... Do we still need it?"
-from
Stephen Colbert's interview with Congresswoman Carolyn Kilpatrick, 11/30/05

In an obtusely related story, the
Daily Show with Jon Stewart will feature the White Stripes as their first ever musical guest tonight. So now you know that.

Lately, there has been quite a humdrum about Cat Power's cover of The Nerves classic Hanging On The Telephone for some cell phone provider. The link above is an mp3 of the original recording, later re-recorded and made into a hit by Blondie. I still think the original trumps all other versions any day. This was also one of the very early staples of my Les Infants sets at the Peacock.

The Nerves, while only small set of singles, were extremely influential in the power pop sound of the late seventies and early eighties; spawning such groups as The Beat and Plimsouls and influencing a whole generation of other power pop groups and - daresay - many of the pop-punk groups of the late eighties and alterna-nineties.

Composer of everything awesome Ryuichi Sakamoto presents Chain Music; a continuous music project acting as a chain letter from one artist to another protesting the invasion of Iraq. Contributors thus far include include Sakamoto, Towa Tei, Atom Heart, Ryoji Ikeda, Carsten Nicolai, David Sylvian, Mika Vainio (pansonic), Cornelius, Christian Fennesz, Christopher Willits and Taylor Deupree.

Also, check Protest Records for more anti-bush musical goodness from artists such as Cat Power, Jim O'Rourke, The Evens, Sonic Youth and many more.

And closing out today's offering of free modern protest music, Antiopic's Allegorical Power Series features contributions from William Basinski, Freiband, Blevin Blectum and one of AGF's finest moments committed to ones and zeroes.

Wednesday, November 30, 2005

Reason #23 why black metal trumps minimal techno any day of the week.

I forgot to post these earlier in the week: photos from this past Wednesday's Dorkwave party are here and here.

Today from Pitchfork: DFA for the holidays and Stephin Merritt to release a collection of his work for theatre in February.

The Magnetic Fields frontman is also reportedly working on a live musical adaptation of Neil Gaiman's children's book Coraline, slated to premiere at St. Anne's Warehouse in late 2006. More info on Merritt's current projects at The House of Tomorrow.

More on the more innovative side of the Detroit rock scene: we caught the debut performance of Marie and Francis last night at Bart's, a cozy breakfast joint/bar, a few blocks from my house in Ferndale Michigan. Marie and Francis is our dear friends Betty Marie Barnes of Saturday Looks Good to Me and Nathaniel F. H. Burgundy of Pas/Cal (with support from Mr. Richard Panic, also of Pas/Cal). Marie and Francis once again proved my long-held theory that natural talent always trumps skill and hard work (not to suggest by any means that the duo do not work their asses off and are not highly skilled musicians,) but you can just smell raw talent, and it stops you dead in your tracks. Betty admitted that this was the first time she had ever played an instrument or one of her own songs in front of an audience, yet the chatty crowd at Bart's fell silent, completely captivated by the beautiful songs that would make the best of songwriters green with envy.

And by the way, DethLab will be playing with Pas/Cal at their Holiday Spectacular next month at the Lager House. Details TBA.

Tuesday, November 29, 2005

"Let's kill every one we know and hit the open road."

For those not intimately involved in Detroit's small but exceptional post-punk/shoegaze/gawth/new-wave scene, 800 Beloved [formerly inlieof] have three delectably dark and infectious tracks up on their MySpace profile for your downloading pleasure. [Show Me Evil is featured on WDRK episode 5]

Our very own Allen Goodman recently became the newest member of 800 Beloved mastermind Sean Lynch's cast of collaborators. I initially gave Allen a week, but these two are weird enough that I think this might stick.

Ms. Toybreaker and I are hoping to work with Lynchy on some original DethLab tracks once we get some time to actually sit and write some songs. It'll be fun to see how the Peter Hook-esque bass lines in my head work with the ASSio and Screaming Pussy. ;)

Monday, November 28, 2005



Wal-Mart Dance Party. The next Dorkwave? Video included.
Thanks to Guy@PSFK.

Friday, November 25, 2005



Submissions for CAID's juried All Media Show are due by December 4th, 2005. Download form here.

Wednesday, November 23, 2005

The 11-Year Quest to Create Disappearing Colored Bubbles
Chemical burns, ruined clothes, 11 years, half a million dollars—it's not easy to improve the world's most popular toy. Yet the success of one inventor's quest to dye a simple soap bubble may change the way the world uses color.

ed note: if you were having trouble with the MP3 links below a minute ago, they have been fixed. enjoy!

Dorkwave Thanksgiving TONIGHT!

(because it's just not Thanksgiving if you're not hung over.)

blackbx and burnlab.net present:
Les Infants Terribles at Corktown Tavern
1716 Michigan Ave., Detroit
18+ | 10pm-? | FREE

We're currently redoing the whole Dorkwave website, which is why it hasn't been updated recently. Look for lots of new goodness in the coming weeks though. Here is a sampling of a new feature Rob has been working very hard on the past few weeks:



We are pleased to present, for the first time on the internets:

RADIO DORKWAVE

program one, hosted by Rob Theakston: download
program two, hosted by Rob Theakston: download
program three, hosted by Rob Theakston: download
program four, hosted by Michael Doyle: download
program five, hosted by Michael Doyle: download

my faith in car design has recently been restored by a new friends gorgeous new website for his company MOTOR CITY EUROPE (wait for the intro!)

also, im heading back to detroit next week for a month or so before i start my new job after xmas...looking forward to seeing firsthand what i normally only see pictures of on burnlab

Monday, November 21, 2005

ZDNet has some very interesting pictures of Google's new London office.

Looking to make an impression on the neighborhood, Google held a contest, Doodle 4 Google where area school-children send in their interpretation of the Google logo. What was won? Heh, a nice parking spot for Googles PR dept.

Saturday, November 19, 2005


From a European point of view, this has got to be the best pieces of Americana I've seen for a long time. The Economist has a great article on Punkin Chunkin, a "sport" in which one builds air-powered superguns to shoot pumpkins as far as possible.

Quote: "All in all, Punkin Chunkin is a symbol of what makes America great. Only in the richest country on earth could regular guys spend tens of thousands of dollars building a pumpkin gun. Only in a nation with such a fine tradition of inventiveness, not to mention martial prowess, would so many choose to. And only in a land of wide open spaces would they be able to practise their chunkin without killing their neighbours."

Friday, November 18, 2005

Thursday, November 17, 2005

Here's a nice article on cerebral cooking.

Does anyone have a bone saw we can borrow for this evening's epicurean adventure? Apparently you can't buy fresh lamb brains anymore (some crap about "mad cow"... whatever...) but you can buy the whole head.

(Yeah, we're just that trendy.)

Flash guru Brendan Dawes shares his Flash 8 fears of a future filled with drop shadows and bevels on his personal blog

He also announces he's going to be writing a new book. His first book since Drag Slide Fade. Expect the way the internet looks to change a little after its release.

Speaking of which, Frieds Of Ed just released a wonderful new book bringing the exciting new possibilities of XML integrated Flash to a larger audience. Which BTW, you can buy on Amazon with Foundation ActionScript Animation for only 52 bucks!

Long live the interweb!

The new $300 video projector from Hasbro might be the coolest "toy" since the PXL-2000.

Wednesday, November 16, 2005

We interrupt goth week for a little automotive news...

Since there are at least a few Saab enthusiasts on the roll call, this caught my eye.



Rumors have it that Saab might show a small & light two seater coupe concept that would "have the DNA of the Saab Sonett", a small coupe produced by Saab in the mid 60s (available also as a roadster). If the public's reaction is favourable (how could it not be for a small and light coupe with a fuel-efficient 240 hp 2.0 turbo) the Saab Sonett's heir might continue towards production, but nothing is certain.

Tuesday, November 15, 2005

I may have to change my New Years Eve plans...

Throbbing Gristle will be doing two special performances in Berlin on December 31 and January 1. The NYE event will include the likes of T. Raumschmiere and Thomas Brinkmann, and TG will perform a new live soundtrack for the 1980 film In the Shaddow of the Sun on New Years Day.

You can purchace a gold leafed "UBERTICKET" (packaged in a tin box and red cloth bag) for 300 euros, which includes admission to both live performances, a private viewing of TG's exhibition Industrial Annual Report at Kunst-Werke Institute for Contemporary Art, an advance copy of TG's brand new studio LP Part Two and other special treats.

If you can't make it to Berlin, the forthcoming album will be available directly from Mute on January 3, and in record stores February.

i would love to get my hands on the video that brought THIS about

Get your black on. It's officially Goth Week in Detroit.

Wednesay, 11.16.05
Front 242
Majestic Theater, Detroit MI
18+ | doors 8pm | $20

Thursday, 11.17.05
[Dethlab closed rehearsal/photo shoot, Eastern Market]

Friday, 11.18.05
Bauhaus
Royal Oak Music Theater, Royal Oak MI
all ages | doors 7pm | $40 (almost sold out!)


DETHLAB circa 199-something

Saturday, 11.19.05
Noir Leather presents SIN
Dethlab five hour live(ish)/DJ set
Fetish styling by Wretched Design, Boston MA
Diesel, Hamtramck MI
18+ | 9pm- | $15, $10 w/ creative outfit

Monday, November 14, 2005



Even if it does push a TV at the end, it's still a stunningly beautiful piece of video. Making the rounds on lots of blogs...see the full version here. Nice addition of the Jose Gonzalez track too.

Lots going on out here in La La land, so here's a little update...

First, while this is no longer news to some people, I can now officially announce that I am Managing Editor at URB Magazine. And while I'm still not certain how the whole title hierarchy works in the publishing world (still faking it), I am definately the HHIC (Head Hebrew In Charge). I even get my own office (and it's not in the basement of a nightclub in Hamtramck).

Saw a fantastic band on Saturday night, The Sounds from Sweden. Remember what a great song "Kids in America" is? Imagine a band where every song sounds like that. Their current hit is even called "We're Not Living In American." Swedish new-wave pop it is!

Currently enjoying Clap Your Hands Say Yeah on iTunes. If you've read any hipster music blog this year, you've already heard of them, but the last three songs are pure genius. Like David Byrne fronting Eggs as produced by Robin Gutherie.

Caught Front 242 last week at Avalon. Full disclosure, I've never owned a 242 album, but as is obvious by the company I keep, I've listen to the group a lot over the years. Lemme just say that the show was excellent. So excellent I don't even mind that I paid (gasp!) for a ticket.

Have a bunch more things in the works that I'll be cluing y'all in on real soon. In the mean time, back to the fabulous Hollywood lifesytle.

Sunday, November 13, 2005

Does anyone mind if I gloat for just a second

Focus Media releases are now available on iTunes, along with several other digital music distributors. (Tank now, rest to come soon)

Check it out

Which means, you can buy Glee, Ad Nauseam (new review) for like $3.96, which saves you roughly $4.04 if you were to buy it from us or your local record shop. Which, aint a bad deal. You dont really need the real thing anyway, you young hip iPod using emeffer you.

PS: if youre tired of hearing me talk about this tiny record, dont worry, I'm tired of talking about it. I'm half way done with an LP and Jes Kramers album is almost done, so I'll have something new to rant endlessly about. (i have the heart of a used car salesman.... or a souless spammer)

Friday, November 11, 2005

Twice this week Pitchfork impresses me with their writing.

Saying "moustache guy" instead of using someone's name - on purpose - is one of those tiny little strokes of brilliance that just brightens my day to read.

Galliano just gets better all the time.

I'm not much of a fan of the spring fashion season - the casual cuts, pale colors, the light, unstructured fabrics... just not my cup of tea. That's why John Galliano's spring show this week was like a refreshing blast of crisp autumn air ripe with the scent of leaves, grilled meats and the greased wheels of clacking old roller coasters taking one last lap before the first frost. Ahhh...

Aside from some pretty excellent designs, the self-described bad boy of the fashion world presented his collection like a hybrid cabaret show/wedding party, featuring a cast of characters of varying body types and extreme features that would be well suited for a circus film directed by Jean Jeunnet (which, no, is not in the works... as far as I know.)

View the full collection here.



The divine proportion of the ipod (and other things) in case you were interested.

If you can't get tickets to Bauhaus at the Nokia Theatre in NYC tonight, you can still hang out with the boys afterwards at Lit Lounge. Justine D's ongoing Friday dance party AKTION doubles as the official Bauhaus afterparty, with JDH and guest DJs Roy Dank and Mike Simonetti.

Friday, Nov. 11
AKTION @ LIT
93 2nd Ave., between 5th and 6th St., NYC
21+ | free | 11pm


Speaking of things dark, spooky and awesome, break out the rubber pants and clear your schedule for next Saturday night. Dethlab is pleased to be DJ'ing Noir Leather's SIN party. We've successfully pissed off Detroit's rock and techno scenes with Dorkwave, and our sights are clearly set on ruffling the goth/industrial scene, and anyone else who could stand to have a little more fun. The kids may or may not recognize anything we play (because we're sure as hell not playing VNV Nation,) but I think (I hope) they'll like it just as much as Boston did a couple months back. If you haven't seen us perform as Dethlab yet, try to imagine something like I Love Lucy meets Blade Runner.

The last time I was involved in a Noir event was ten years ago. It involved grinding metal on stage, electrical tape and said rubber pants. This is going to be fun!

Saturday, Nov. 19
Noir Leather presents SIN
special guest DJ's DETHLAB
Fetish production by Wretched Design, Boston
18+ | 9pm | Diesel | 11425 Jos. Campau, Hamtramck MI
costumes encouraged, $5 off for creativity
flyer here

Our own Mike Servito takes over Oslo [the one in Detroit] this weekend with two distinctive nights of quality programming. First off is METL, an evening of high brow techno and low brow behavior. Then tomorrow is the first installent of SASS, a brand new gay-oriented night "for those sick of hearing bad trance remixes of Cher." Amen.



Friday Nov. 11
METL
djs Mike Servito + Patrick Russell
18+ | $5 | 10pm



Saturday, Nov. 12
Coitus Interruptus presents SASS
djs Nathan Rapport + Mike Servito
18+ | $5 | 10pm

[flyer designs by Bethany]

Thursday, November 10, 2005

The extended Burnlab family gets not one, but three salutations from the Metro Times in their music issue this week:


Best blog that combines Detroit attitude with whack electronics and space-goth fashion

toybreaker.net/blog

If you want to find out about the fabulous party you missed last weekend, or listen to samples of toy instruments played by Bethany Shorb of God and his Bitches, you should cruise here often. Highlights: a picture of her screaming pussy - actually a Smartronics Animal Quartet piano - and a teaser link to Cyberoptix, which Shorb describes as a "baroque ornamental burnout" custom clothing line ready to launch in 2006.


Best-suited electro new wave

Dorkwave

Team Dorkwave's monthly parties are a blur of warm Jager, Georgio Moroder, Saran Wrap hot pants and atrocious dance moves. "Stop the madness!" Corktown Tavern said, and tried to burn itself down. But Dorkwave endured, and continues to endear. They're as cool as Rupert "Stiles" Stylinksi surfing on a van.


Best label-creating genre-bending music that'll never sell north of M-59

Ghostly/Spectral Sound

Sam Valenti IV's empire, made up of gifted misfits like Dykehouse, Skeletons and the Girl-Faced Boys and Todd Osborn (not to mention international snootlegs Matthew Dear and Tadd Mullinix), is the best thing to happen to regional sonic-pop art since the blistering acid tech-house/abandoned factory scene captured the world's imagination in the 1990s. Stylistically different, but as significant.



p.s.: big thanks to Rob Theakston for a most entertaining Dorkwave Radio studio session last night, and Bethany and I apologize in advance for your hangover.

YEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEAAH!!!!!!


THE BEST.

Art, Democracy and Intellectual Property

Dark Source is a project by Ben Rubin, first installed at the Making Things Public exhibit earlier this year in Karlsruhe Germany.

The artwork presents over 2,000 pages of software code, a printout of 49,609 lines of C++ that constitute version 4.3.1 of the AccuVote-TS source code: the heart of the predominant electronic voting machine in the United States. AccuVote manufacturer Diebold claims the code as intellectual property and a trade secret, thus every single line in the artwork has been blacked out by the artist. The thousands upon thousands of censored lines of code presented in Dark Source raise the important point that the very infrastructure of democracy is a privately owned commercial commodity and secret. Legally, Diebold must be taken on their word that the collective decisions which shape world history are collected and counted fairly and accurately.

The national Warriors Halloween Party photo site will take a bit more time to organize, but the official Detroit photo gallery is now online here.

A few lovely pics from the NYC pary can be found here.

Wednesday, November 09, 2005

Every once in a while Pitchfork's writing is hilarious. (That is, when they're not ripping on your friends or teengae heroes.)

Killswitch: click.

Our good friend Scott is Killswitch's office manager, which we find quite appripote.


(It's the time of day where I start making bad music puns. Stop me.)

Despite the previously noted, much good did come from elections across the United States yesterday, including big wins for Democrats in Virginia and New Jersey and voters in Pennsylvania striking a blow against "intelligent design" (also known as "creationism", or more accurately "we're too lazy to try and understand how the universe works, and those who do are going to hell.") In the heartland however, Kansas further proves Darwin's theories.

I was going to post something about moving back to New York (despite the re-election of their own putz of a mayor,) but this changed my mind.

Four more years of incompetence and abuse of privilege. Good job, Detroit. (It feels like we just went through this in '04...)

Detroitblog predicted how this might happen in yesterday's post. I expect to Rob to offer a post-election assessment after his blood comes down from boil.... though that may take a while.

Also in today's paper: Poll finds 33% of Detroiters want to leave.

This town breeds cynicism like cancer sometimes.

In other election news: my hamlet of Ferndale Michigan, directly adjacent to Detroit, has passed a proposal allowing medicinal use of marijuana, while neighboring Oak Park voted against allowing alcohol sales by the glass. The former is getting a lot of media attention, but has limited real world implications (other than the likelyhood of the neighborhood smelling like hippies,) but the latter is quite significant and unfortunate for one small business:

In Oak Park, voters shot down the proposal, which would have allowed businesses that made 50% of their profits from food sales to sell alcohol. The issue came up last year after the city acquired a portion of Royal Oak Township through a land-and tax-sharing agreement that had businesses with liquor licenses, including a karaoke bar, Royal Kubo, on Greenfield south of I-696. This vote means that Royal Kubo, the only business that still had a license before the election, will lose its liquor license.

Owner Armand Santos said he was surprised by the vote and now plans to move his business to another city.

"Karaoke without alcohol -- it doesn't go hand-in-hand," he said.

"We lost everything. We lost our livelihood."

Tuesday, November 08, 2005

Bernd & Hilla Becher's exhibition of the Typologies of Industrial Buildings at the Berlin Hamburger Banhhof triggered my case of Stendhal Syndrome.

Trent Reznor documents the wreckage of Katrina.

WWII Maunsell towers.

Monday, November 07, 2005

Most of the Detroit Demolition Crew (1, 2, 3) has returned from New York in one piece (more than we can say for NYC.) Huge, huge congrats to Matt Dear and Ryan Elliott (under the skull) for a smashing success at the Guggenheim, to Jon O for recieving the coveted and very well deserved Ghostly ring, and a very special happy birthday and huge thank you to Sam Valenti IV for a great weekend. I have a ton of work to catch up on now, but Burnlab blogging to resume shortly.

[all photos by Ms. Toybreaker: complete set here.]

Friday, November 04, 2005

Today is the 5th Annual Take a Model Train to Work Day.

[thanks John Balousek!]

BIX

A matrix of 930 fluorescent lamps is integrated into the eastern acrylic glass facade of the biomorphic building structure of the new Kunsthaus in Graz, Austria. Through the possibility to individually adjust the lamps’ brightness at an infinite variability with 20 frames/second images, films and animations can be displayed - the Kunsthaus' skin is transformed into a giant low resolution computer display.

video

NYC will be seeing a small Detroit invasion form the Burnlab/Ghostly camp this weekend. Festivities start tonight, with Matthew Dear and Ryan Elliott performing in The Guggenheim Rotunda:

The Guggenheim and Flavorpill present First Fridays feat. Matthew Dear w/ Ryan Elliott | Fri 11.4 (9pm-1am)

Guggenheim Museum (1071 5th Ave, 212.423.3500) | $15

For round two of Flavorpill's monthly First Fridays at the Guggenheim, we beef up the beats with the one-two punch of Ghostly/Spectral's Matthew Dear and Ryan Elliott. Detroit denizen Dear sheds his current sex-crazed Audion moniker for a deft set of the teutonic-tinged, pixilated pop, and zig-zagging zipper-funk that dominated his accolade-garnering 2003 release Leave Luck to Heaven, while fellow south Michigan boyo Elliott * the mixmaster behind stunning label-sampler Spectral Sound, Vol. 1 * purveys a warm flow of Motor City's finest robo-soul bass lines. So, perk your ears while absorbing 800 breathtaking years of art in the Russia! exhibit, before uncoiling on the atrium's dance floor.

Our old friend Golan Levin is also in town this weekend, performing his brand new multimedia project Scrapple at Monkey Town in Williamsburg.

Two-time Monkey Town alumnus Golan Levin has shown his audiovisual performances and installations all over the world, including exhibitions in the Whitney Biennial, Ars Electronica festival, and a bombed-out palace in Zagreb. For this weekend's four shows, Golan will present a World Premiere of his latest audiovisual performance, "Scrapple".

Acting in the capacity of "guest curator", Golan has also selected a complementary menu of hot new video works by his friends and colleagues -- Hillary Harp and Suzie Silver, Sue Costabile & AGF, Cassandra C. Jones and Tanya Bezreh.


Performances are at 7:30pm and 10:00pm November 4 & 5.
Reservations are suggested. Full info here.

The Cranbrook Architecture Department has a new collective blog portal, with all but two students currently participating. Doug Johnston is also in charge of the new Archinect School Blog for the department. The department is ripping apart a trailer for a mobile project/exhibition space and already has six universities and galleries confirmed to temporarily house the traveling project. Interesting stuff!

arch

Wednesday, November 02, 2005

regarding Josh's previous post: I'd put money on both.

The thing about trainwrecking is nobody cares. (Except for other DJs, but they're probably not out there dancing anyway...)

I wonder if Casey Spooner will say something clever...


...I wonder if i'll trainwreck in front of 1500 people



Image hosted by Photobucket.com

how a "top 100" of games not include the freeforall fun of "hungry hungry hippos?". where is the justice??

Subterranean "Mega Flagship" Apple Store on 5th Avenue to open by year's end, featuring a giant glass cube entrance on the plaza of the GM Building. Cool.

Serge Gainsbourg et Brigitte Bardot video de musique!

[via we-make-money-not-art]


...and more killer robots.

Tuesday, November 01, 2005

Re: Is it okay to say "electroclash" again?

Yes, at least it is in New York

Also gleaned from Max, I LOVE this quote from Casey Spooner:

Nothing is real. The most beautiful things are those efforts of mankind to transform themselves and the world around them into what that want reality to be.

Seriously. Where would we be if we all just accepted who we are in the moment instead of actively being who we are in our grandest dreams and ambitions?

I think maybe everyone needs to read Anthem again. I still don't quite understand how Ayn Rand was embraced by the right, because she is truly the original punk, and I'm sure she would agree that nothing is more "real" than what you make happen.

But don't listen to me - I still believe we will create a race of robots far superior to humans, thus sealing our own demise... but this is not a bad thing, rather a confirmation of our own ingenuity and a humble acceptance of our fleshy weakness.

(Here's proof. More here.)

Not speaking of electroclash (*ahem*,) our friend Max presents his downloads of the month, including Washing Machine is Speaking, my favorite Ellen Allien song ever - which, as you should know, is a bold statement.

The reigning queen of techno producers must have a cooler washing machine than most of us. Or maybe Germans just have a better rapport with their technology. This particular waschmaschine is loaded off-center, creating a syncopated thud beneath the beeps and ticks of its morse-code control pulses. Fuzzed-out gears and drive belts switch on and off as the washer moves relentlessly through its cycle; a high, propulsive melody jangles in during the final spin. A thoroughly cleansing experience.

(There is one person I know who has such a rapport with technology.)

Is it okay to say "electroclash" again?

I'm kinda sick of coming up with a million different ways of not saying "electroclash" when I really mean "electroclash".


Nice site to jar those childhood memories out. Some of the picks are a little questionable: ROM #50? Speak and Spell#23?

We still have a bit of organizing to do, but all the photos from Friday night's Warriors party have been uploaded for your viewing pleasure. Once again, a huge thanks to everyone who lent their skills behind the lens, to Jimmy, Alec and Jon for the excellent musical selections, and everyone for the top notch costume participation!







Jon Dones' photos here

Pam Yung's photos here

and a more comprehensive recap from Bethany here.

Monday, October 31, 2005

A loverly evening ahead:
1) scare children.
2) gorge on candy.
3) go see The Nomi Song at the Detroit Film Theater.

A Huge thank you to everyone who came out to the Warriors Halloween Party at Oslo on Friday; a tremendous success all around. (I can't beleive we're allowed to have this much fun... and get paid for it!) We'll have teh official photos from Mr. Jon Dones later tonight, but in the mean time here are some excellent candid snaps:

from Emma Peel
from Hansel
from the Unabomber

Friday, October 28, 2005

I'm so excited about halloween that I went home and changed into my costume at lunch time.

This is the last time I'm going to say it: party tonight!



Today's childhood flashback brought to you by Mummenschanz.

Better than Chinatown at 3am in August: New York City smells like maple syrup.

Seriously.

The aroma was first noticed in lower Manhattan around 9pm last evening and is apparently in all five burroughs now. The Office of Emergency Management has been running tests of the air since last night with no tangible results.

The Times reports on conflicting accounts to the nature of the sweet sweet odor: "A police officer who had thrown out her French vanilla coffee earlier compared it to that. Two diplomats from the Netherlands disagreed, politely. Rieneke Buisman said it smelled like roasted peanuts. Her friend Joris Geeven said it reminded him of a Dutch cake called peperkoek, though he could not describe that smell."

Over 200 artists and designers are taking part in The Munny Show, a three city benefit event for children affected by Katrina. Custom Munnys by Takashi Murakami, The Designers Republic, Tristan Eaton, Metallica(?), Whoopi Goldberg(?!) and many more will be on the auction block.

Rob: Unfortunately I possess but an mental imprint from the show.
I will go through some possible channels to try to find some tangible trace.
I'll keep you posted-

In other news...

Our favourite scritcher activist, Banksy wrote a book.

[WARNING: gothy-hipster-metrosexual hair dilemma post... move along.]

I just dyed my hair black. (Yeah, for real.)

The question is: do I style it like Nick from Robots or that guy from The Bravery?

(Without lots of wax-based balm, I look like the dorky third Reed brother... should have seen that coming.)

Thursday, October 27, 2005

I wanna be this guy when I grow up

OMGZ


Ganked from Get LowFi

LiveModern
making modernism affordable?
How about making modernism acceptable.
Nice blog section. This one is a good read.

THIS SATURDAY IN NYC




Attention Cranbrook voyeurs: the enhanced podcast Cranbrook Calling: In From the Outs is a weekly unvarnished look inside the Cranbrook Academy of Art 2d Design studio, hosted by Elliott Earls and the academy's graduate students. We talk about our work and attempt to provide a window into our world, with an emphasis on typography, music, interactivity and discourse within the department. Rad.

the excerpt from the mag below rocket me right back to my highschool + ccs years of 88-96...thanks for the memory jog. those were good years.

"Becoming well known in Detroit is about as difficult as shitting your pants, but not nearly as cool."



I miss the 'zines of the 1990s. I miss the vile rants, the pre-9/11 nihilism. I miss the crappy collages Xeroxed at the Detroit Public Library. I miss the inside jokes about CCS professors and short-lived bands.

Thanks to the miracle of the information superhighway, everyone can
read this 10(!) year old essay from Fuck Everything #2. Even though most of the references are long gone (and greatly missed), it still amuses me.