Monday, January 19, 2009

Gui Boratto

One of my most favorite electro producers will soon release a new album. This is a little older, but still a wonderful track/video. Enjoy!

gui boratto beatifull life

Saturday, January 17, 2009

Video: America's stupidest bike lane

We have some in Tallahassee which make about just as much sense...

Friday, January 16, 2009

Share the f***ing road, America!

It happened for the third time today and I am pissed now. While riding my bike on the road to my college, some driver of an automobile scared me on purpose. It's third time within the past 4 weeks something like this happened. Some guy acted as if they'd yield at first and when I accelerate, they'd too.

Bike Punks Vinyl Sticker fifties girl in short shorts being daring on a bicycle, picture done in black and whi

A few other times some stupid moron passed me with his windows open just to scream into my ears. Obviously, that scared the living bejesus out of me. I don't need to explain how dangerous that can be.

While it is perfectly normal to ride a bike where I come from, it seems that a bicycler's merely a bum, who can't afford a real vehicle. The reason why folks just spill their lack of social skills and appropriate
behavior and celebrate their lack of cerebral capacity out onto those that are "the treehuggers" on a bike still remains a mystery to me.

Of course, I don't need to mention all the benefits that come from riding a bike. Such as the deduction of one's carbon footprint and the daily work out.

Occasionally, back in the 90's during my "Hardcore/Punk hey-hey" I was briefly introduced to the idea of the Bike Punks through socio-political hardcore fanzines, such as HeartattaCk. Never paying much thought to this idea I usually just wondered why this is even necessary to merge the rebellious, antagonist, fight-social-injustice-and-bigotry with riding a bike. It seemed a little bit over the top, a little bit too staged for me. As I understood riding a bike to be a quite trivial thing.
I mean, back in central Europe you find all kinds of folks, from all kinds of different ethnic backgrounds and different social classes use bikes on a regular basis. It's not uncommon to find a top salary manager commute to work with his/her bike.

However, now living in the USA I realize why a bunch of socially aware people that happen to be bicyclers might feel the urge to form a somewhat losely organized group such as the Bike Punks or the more hands-on organized ShareTheRoad.Org (which, by the way, makes these beautiful license plates for Floridian cars.

Tuesday, January 13, 2009

War From A Harlots Mouth

This is my friend Nico (also in The Ocean) from Berlin recording a new album with his band War From A Harlots Mouth. Looking forward to the album.

Sunday, January 11, 2009

Hank interviewing Manson

I was never a fan of Marilyn Manson. Merely due to the fact that I felt he is pretentious and arrogant. Or at least, that's how we portraits himself a lot in his videos and performances. Similarly, I could never really take much out of his music, which essentially rips off the rock dinosaurs of the 1970's like T-Rex, Zeppelin, Alice Cooper, ect... Lot's of glamor, lot's of spectacle ect., and somehow not enough balls or sleazyness (read: "Appetite for Destruction" [for those that don't know ...a pop cultural reference to Guns n' Roses debut album]) to convert me.

Manson portrayed the generic rock star to me. Shock and awe without a cause... at least, I did not grasp the concept, the artist statement behind this monstrous production off and on the stage. It seemed so much like a rebel without a cause - something I am really tired of. Although, I appreciate direct and unpolished provocation if I can follow why. To just provoke merely to stage and sell an image always seemed too lame and was one of the reasons why Punk and Hardcore with its nitty-gritty youthful power and angst was more approachable to me back in the day when my musical, and even more so my ideological universe was shaped.

Manson seemed like the "enemy". Not because he was the "Anti-Christ Superstar" or anything regarding his rather predictable provocation. (Although, I am not Anti-Christian, I wouldn't exactly consider myself fancying the Christian Right in this country either! Though, I believe to understand the agenda behind it a little more today after immigrating to the States.) The "enemy" because he sold the "revolution" (figuratively speaking) via using and abusing cheap-trick, washed down provo-rhetoric that the world first saw in the 70's and 80's already (think: Black Sabbath, Dio, Slayer).

However, in regards of the entire Columbine discussion I never bought any of that white-bread protestant garbage talk tying the shootings entirely to one artist. I mean, wtf?! I've worked 6 years in the juvenile youth welfare system of the German State and I can say with downright conviction that the family, especially your parents and the parenting style are first and foremost relevant to how you will deal with the shit that happens to an individual. And of course, there is more than "just bad parenting" as well. Sure! Once a person hits puberty the peer group will most likely pose a stronger pressure and a greater influence on someone than the parents. However, the roots, the bloody roots are right there with your parents. Even, when they are hardly there, physically, mentally, or both.

Similarly, the infrastructure of your environment, things like urban planning, are not completely out of the picture either. On a more subtle level, it is significant if your town provides interesting things, spaces, and places for its youth other than the terribly monochrome shopping temples also known as America's shopping malls. I speak about YMCAs, parks, skateparks, Boys and Girls Clubs. Non-commercial spaces where you can enjoy being a kid, where you aren't harassed by the ever-flowing blabber of desire-infusing billboards and commercials. Places where the average teen can flee from the daunting isolation and solitude of the internet, the social platform website and live a life. Where they live their own life, rather than consuming others' life via TV, YouTube, Perez Hilton, and online gaming communities,where you hide in a surreal world of darkness, murder, and power-phantasies (think: World Of Warcraft for example).

Well, I am going off on tangents here. Anyway, when I watched Bowling for Columbine a few years back, my picture of Manson changed. His rhetorical capacity was more elaborate, sophisticated, and deeper than your average dim-witted rock star gibberish. And then, a few nights ago on my oh so beloveth MacBook I am on the search for Henry Rollins spoken word on YouTube and find a few skits from his much acclaimed Henry Rollins Show on the IPC network. Among other pieces I find a 2 interesting clips.

Although, I will probably never end up as a M. M. fan, I have to admit that I can see his background, motivation, thus his art from a different, more appreciative perspective. In addition, I have to point out that, once again, since I am a US resident and the relentless vile, and hateful rhetoric coming from the (religious) right in this nation I have the seen ever since, I get a more accurate picture of what may have sparked Manson's rebellish image and music.

But here, watch for yourself:
Part Uno:

Part Due:

P.s.: I have to give my awesome wife some credit here. Since she is much more knowledgeable in art and art theory, of course she "got" Manson way before I did. While she always abhorred his musical contribution and cockyness, she always gave him credit for being a person that has more intellectual depth than one would assume, assessing his public persona. Well, you know... I've never been an art geek. I guess, I still am a blunt hardcore-punk kiddo at heart. To speak with Bl'ast!: "It's in my blood!"

Saturday, January 10, 2009

Soy milk

Man, I love soy milk. Ever since I turned 18, on becoming a full blown vegan straight edge kiddo, I consume this cow milk substitute. Now, even many years after I dropped veganism (for the obligatory cheese pizza) I still am very much a fan and regular consumer of soy milk.

After going back to an ovo-lacto-vegetarian diet a couple of years ago, I never really wanted to drink plain milk. For all of my cereal, drink chocolate, and whatever-needs I continued to buy soy milk. I thought and still think that it tastes better. In addition, it has less calories and is supposed to be healthy. On top of that and relatively recently I found out that I am lactose intolerant anyways. High doses of fresh dairy products such as ice cream, any kind of pie that includes all sorts of fresh dairy or too much cheese pizza cause indigestion, stomach pain, and flatulence.

Anyways, upon my emigration to the U.S. I had to let go of my beloved, most favourite Alpro soy milk (originally from Belgium). It has the most creamy, least "nutty" flavor, and is quite thick in its consistency. GreenWise Market Soymilk Plain
From my first visit in the US in the late 90's I remembered Silk's soy milk and unfortunately romantisized its quality/taste throughout the rest of time in Germany (for a good eight more years). Unfortunately, my memories about Silk soy milk (the leading dairy substitute producer in the US) were very much romantized version of the real quality and taste. Their milk is good, but not great. Their soyghurts are a mediocre product I merely consume for the lack of a better, affordable alternative. Compared to Alpro's soyghurt and pudding products it's seriously, crappy!

However, the other day, on one of my obligatory shopping trails through one of the local Publix Superstore's I find Publix's Greenwise Soy Milk and buy half a gallon, merely for the fact that it was cheap. Though, much to my surprise it tasted amazing and is the best I've ever tasted since
Alpro's Sojamilch. Cheap and better. Yay, me so happy, me so likey!

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