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- Category: Zines
- Founded: Apr 16, 1999
- Language: English
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(May whatever god(s) or goddess(es) you believe in bless the @#*% out of you for
putting up with my crappy crossposting)
I?ve got a lot of junk to plug, so I?m gonna do it all at once so I won?t have
to bug anyone any more than I have to:
First, I have two poetry chapbook/zine things finished and ready for your
Your Kisses Are Like Metallic Squirrel Droppings is a collection of 34
screwed-up/humorous/masochistic love poems such as: You Should Have Told Me You
Were Dead, Female in Question Finds Relationship Consuming, A Rotting Corpse,
Clean Masochism Sonnet, Forever I?ll Love You (Perhaps), and more. Here?s a
sample poem to give you an idea of the tone/style:
Female in Question Finds Her Relationship Consuming
I tried to be sensitive,
I tried to understand,
But now dear I must ask you
To stop chewing on my hand.
I didn't think your nibbling
On my ear would do much harm
Until it turned up missing
With my leg and foot and arm.
I thought you were just friendly,
But discovered otherwise
When it wasn't Richard Simmon
Who was trimming down my thighs.
I love you dearly, darling,
But I fear this just won't work--
No, it's not your criminal record, love,
It's just this chewing quirk.
So kiss me one last time dear,
But no too long, I said,
For I want to end this love of ours
While I am still a head.
Oh, hahahahaha! Ugh! Your Kisses Are Like Metallic Squirrel Droppings is $2 +
stamp ($4 international). It?s quater-size, hand-bound, 40 pages, not counting
cover. No illustrations, but the cover is really cool and looks like an
old-school tabloid. Address for all orders is at the at end of this post.
My other poetry zine is Meditations on Spam. 18 poems about Hormel?s miracle
meat in a can, ranging from stupid and goofy to somewhat serious. This is a
cut-and-paste, purposely-kind-of-cheap-looking collection with illustrations by
me along with some generic black-and-white pictures of Spam tins. Poems include:
Barbie Longs to Be Like Spam, Magnus to the Mermaid, My Pet Spam, and White
Trash Gormet. 12 pages, not counting cover. $1 + stamp ($2 international).
Here?s a Spam poem sample for you:
Ken Finds a New Love, Even Pinker and More Manufactured Than Barbie
When Ken awoke and wiped the Cheez Whiz off
His slimy, plastic body, thinking what
He?d say to Barbie when she heard that he
Had found a lover far more pink than her.
He took a swig of Tang and had a slice
Of virgin-snow-white Wonder bread. And far
More manufactured than she?d ever be.
He slipped on back beneath the sheets, caressed
The pink and lovely mass of flesh beside
Himself. So cold, but fleshy, nonetheless,
Much more than plastic Barbie. When he turned
The key last night and slipped the golden dress
Off from his lovely, fleshy Spam he could
Not stop himself and, thoughtless, plunged right in.
The Cheap Vegan #8 is out as well. This one contains random things to do to save
money, price comparisons of various vegan breakfasts, recommended reading for
cheap vegans (books, zines, magazines), the wondrous wonders of cornmeal, why be
a cheap vegan?, polenta recipe, and a few other tidbits. Issues #1-7 are also
still available. All are $1 each ($2 international).
I?ve already posted about The Rabbit Fodder Addict, but it?s still available for
your cooking pleasure for $1 ($2 international).
I?ve also finally got a website up for The Cheap Vegan at:
And The Pleasant Unicorn Store where you can see and order zines and other stuff
I make is up as well at: http://diystore.cjb.net
The prices at the PU store may be slightly different from the ones here. Pick
the one that?s cheaper. Shipping is included in the prices at the website is
the main difference.
Lastly, if anyone knows of anyone who makes or sells vegan zines and/or
cookzines or any food-related zine, please let me know. My e-mail is:
Send all orders, money and love to:
P. O. Box 715
Weatherford, TX 76086
Thank you kindly for your time. May all your Tang be orange.
Good day all, and hope you are are well. Once again, the SPA is on
the move with some exciting projects, here we go!
Rick Olney and I have begun discussing the development of a
sponsored giveaway event that is everything that the comics-industry-
hyped "free comic book day" is not. Not that that event is not a
good thing, it is and we aren't putting it down. We just think more
can be done with the idea.
Our intention is to create a sampler publication with information
about the small press network and materials that will encourage
people to seek out the roads less traveled that we all walk.
As we look to what is being done already, it is easy for us to see
the opportunities missed by the mainstream thinking. Our general
consensus is that the introducing of people to the joy of reading
can and should be happening at a scholastic level, with libraries
and other such avenues that have the potential to reach people that
haven't been reached before, to expand the market with outward
We have decided that this particular topic will be a major focus of
the first ever public meeting of the SPA, at the Upcoming Mighty
Mini Con, in NY (www.mightyminicon.com) We are hereby inviting
anyone that can make it to this upstate NY show to come help shape
the ideas that forge this project.
This thread: http://www.dimestoreproductions.com/Forum/topic.asp?
TOPIC_ID=964 is intended for the discussion and development of this
project, to focus in on the hows and whys of bringing this from idea
to actual event sometime in 2004. You are welcome to bring forth
your ideas, and state your intention to participate. We will keep a
running outline of who will do what within the project, as we
identify and fill positions/ participants.
Thank you for taking the time to read about this. We hope to make
some progress in raising the bar on what small press can be, and we
hope you will help spread the word about it.
Focus is an important part of the growth of any community, and for
years, the Small Press/ Independent network has lacked Focus. As
newsletters rose and fell during the 90's so did new pockets of the
network evolve and move off on their own. Computers have brought
even more avenues for creative people to express themselves, and
more ways for people to find support networks for creators. There
are lots of them out there now, and it's great to have options for
creators to find themselves.
But here's what's been missing: Focus. As each person tries to
expand their readership, there are very few places a person can go
to find the Big Picture. A place where everyone can look to find the
new, and be seen.
Well I'm not going to say that the work we're doing with the Small
Press Association and in the Obscurity Unlimited magazine has
reached that level yet. But what I would like to say is that we are
trying. And we know there are lots of people who like and enjoy the
efforts, and we know there are people who have their reservations
Obscurity Unlimited #22 is now out and heading out to subscribers.
Here's a preview of it's awesome cover by Robert Sumner:
Why does that matter? Well, it's the only monthly small press review
print magazine there is. And it needs your support. Whether you
agree with everything the SPA stands for and does, you should be
reading this magazine because it offers the widest view of small
press every month available to the public. And with your support and
help, it could become the focus the small press/ independent arena
has lacked. So, in the interest of jump-starting people's reading of
OU, we're going to make an offer...and here it is...
Go to this page:
and order a sample copy. Anyone who orders a sample copy from now
through the end of April will get TWO issues, for the price of one.
Also, anyone who orders a Six Month subscription will also get a
free 6-block full color advertisement to use any way they please.
We're hoping that this offer will bring more people into giving OU a
good looking over, and that in that end, the small press/
independent arena will grow closer and we can do more about getting
more readers for all of our publications.
We are all just individuals, making our way in a medium that we
love. We can break the mold, and use cards that weren't dealt to us,
to make a better network for us all. So this post might seem like an
advertisement...but in reality it is much more. It's a ray of hope
that I hope people can feel the warmth in.
well well...here i am again...writing about my dumb distro. sorry for the
multiple emails. just to let you all know, billy backed out on helping me with
the distro, thus i once again can't afford to run it. i hate being poor. maybe
one day i'll get a job and try this distro thing all over again...but for the
time being, i just can't do it. sorry to everyone. as for my own zines, there
will be no more issues of "culture sh*ck", "candy sugarless pleading protest" or
any other zines i was working on. instead, i've decided to start a brandnew zine
and work on only this one. it's called "gnosis" and should be out within the
next month or two. i'll let you all know for sure. =) sorry again for any
inconvience to the few people who *were* involved with the distro. -bri aka
rawdaylightdistro.com --> your NE ohio source for zines, music and more
visit geocities.com/rawdaylight for more info
Do you Yahoo!?
The New Yahoo! Search - Faster. Easier. Bingo.
[Non-text portions of this message have been removed]
the 2003 san francisco zinefest will take place on August 9th and 10th
from 10-4pm. more info will be posted to sfzinefest.com as the dates get
Pardon the crosspost.
The Cheap Vegan #9 is now avaiable for all! This one has recipes for quick
fried rice, beans and rice, quicker, easier vegan peanut butter cups, how to
show your significant other the wonderous joys of cheap veganism, chic frugality
(making cheap knock-offs of expensive goodies, what to do with zucchini, things
to do with bananas and a few other thingies. Issue #1-8 are still available
too. Single issues are $1 + stamp, 2 or more are $1 each, no stamps required.
More info about back issues and stuff at: http://cheapvegan.cjb.net
The Rabbit Fodder Addict Cookzine is still available too for $1 + stamp.
I'm also accepting submissions for The Cheap Vegan. Any info you'd like to
share on getting cheap/free vegan food, gardening, where you shop to find
bargains, scavenging, dumpster diving, cheapo recipes, breadmaking, haggling,
mooching techniques or anything that has to do with cheap vegan
eating/shopping/cooking. If I use your submission you'll receive a free copy of
the issue it appears in. Please don't heisitate to submit. My e-mail is:
My postal address is:
P. O. Box 715
Weatherford, TX 76086
Hello all, Ian here from the Small Press Association. For a while
now, the SPA Forum has been a bit of a drag unless you had a
broadband connection to the internet. It's been a bit of a sticky
point, something we've wished there was a solution for. We wanted to
offer all the great features of the broadband-friendly forum system,
but were sad we felt like we were leaving out a significant group of
people by doing so. Well: We have found the solution! We're now
running 2 forum systems on the same database, which will let dial-up
users have access to all the publicity, jobs, and projects that the
SPA is known for.
So we're going on a membership drive...whether you are a broadband
or a dial-up user, now is a great time to join the 400+ members of
the Small Press Association in changing how the world sees small
press. here's the URL to make your choice of how you see the SPA:
Thanks everyone, for keeping the most active small press group
around, growing and improving!
I'm putting together a comp zine around the broad subject of work. I
would like to get a wide variety of submissions on what different
people think about the various meanings of "work" and the many issues
surrounding it. Some ideas for topics to help you know what I'm
looking for include finding meaning in work, political and economic
issues, your path in life, ways to improve our society/world, a
description of your job and how you feel about it, ideas about
money, simplicity, book reviews, bartering, job vs. career vs. work
vs. volunteer work vs…, devaluing of work done by women, our lovely
education systems, wage slavery, the American Dream, consumerism,
surviving without a 9-to-5 job, the 40+hr work week, creating
alternatives, *etc*. I'm looking for writings as well as art.
The deadline for submissions is July 20, 2003. For contributing, you
will get a free copy of the zine, and two random people will be
chosen to receive extra goodies in the mail (so be sure to give me
1045 Brookshire Ct. 9
Belleville, IL 62221
Hello all, Ian here from the Small Press Association. Hope you are
all well and having a good time. Just a quick announcement I hope
everyone will find interesting and usefull...
The May Reviews from Obscurity Unlimited #22 are all loaded and
posted at the website now! That means that you can read all the
reviews from this month's issue of OU and if you want to have a copy
of something you see, you can order it right from the website! PLUS:
We've got a bit of a surprise for you also...we've added a system in
the reviews where YOU can now ADD YOUR OWN VOICE to the reviews.
There is a link in each review for posting your own comments about
the Comics, Zines, and Music that are reviewed, and for reading the
additional comments of others. It is our hope that this new feature
will help create buzz for small press/ Independant releases worth
seeking out. Here's the URL link to the review section:
We will continue to refine and enhance the reviews you find at our
site, to help improve how people find and buy small press/
Independent comics and publications of all sorts. Let us know how
we're doing and any other comments you may have about the OU system!
Hey all, this is James again from NeuFutur and InterStitial magazines.
I'm going to go up to AMC this year, and don't want to Greyhound it
all the way up there. I will if I have to, but I was just wondering if
anyone would be coming up to AMC on route 22 or 33 through South East
and Central Ohio, or be otherwise near Lancaster, Ohio on their drive
and could deviate a little from their course? I live in a small city
called Lancaster that is Southeast of Columbus, and I'm not planning
on bringing anything more than like a change of clothing and my zines.
I can cover gas money, buy a road meal, whatever, and also provide
interesting discussion! If you might be interested, e-mail me at
editor@... ! Thank you!
I have opened up a new website http://www.thamarahua.com and am
incorporating a section for books. While the website may not have your
attention, I would ask for your opinions and feedback on the idea for the
book section please.
Firstly, the authors donate the use of ALL the books sold on this site, and
ALL the proceeds are given to The Thamara Humanitarian Trust. This
Trust was set up on March 4, 2003 to serve the needs of the poor and
destitute in India and Thamara is working towards establishing a social
welfare project, which will involve (perhaps amongst other things)
orphanages, and destitute single women.
We are offering the books for sale on this site at nominal charges, but
they cannot be copied or downloaded. They are for reading on your
While there are still some things to be worked out, if you have a book
that you would like to see published or displayed in this manner, please
contact us at admin@...
Now there are some people who have already published their own
books, or would like to publish their manuscripts, this is another way
that you can get your work out into the open market.
You will always maintain the ownership and copyright to your work and
we will provide a quarterly statement advising you of the status and
sales of your book. Depending on the qualifications, which exist in your
country, this statement may be used as a 'donation receipt' for a tax
deduction in your Income Tax Return.
If you are a self-publisher, and would like to offer your book for sale in
this manner, we can also include a reference in the write up of your
book, as to the how and where your book can be purchased in print.
This could certainly help you in the sale of your book also.
We look forward to hearing from you. And please tell your friends about
this innovate, charitable, idea.
Have a great day!
this is just a quick note letting you all know about static cling
its a canadian based distro & all profits go to charity
please go check it out
im always looking for new items to add
& orders are always appreciated
Altar Magazine & Stickfigure Distro present...
The UnAmerican Film Festival
with Vision Of The Eternal Peacock
& The Good Players
Wednesday, June 25th
@ The Earl 9pm
East Atlanta Village
Taking its name from the House Un-American Activities
Committee (HUAC), which terrorized the film industry
in the 1950s with a witch hunt that blacklisted
'subversive' writers and filmmakers, the UnAmerican
Film Festival supports films and videos that question
the government and social norms, even at a time when
such acts are deemed "unpatriotic." Our mission is to
present fun, smart, engaging and radical films that
offer alternatives to the usual corporate media
sources. Since our successful premiere at Cannes, we
have taken the festival to Paris, London, Tokyo,
Berlin, Moscow, and now Atlanta!
S-11Redux, Life or Liberty, A Message to Bin Laden,
Flag TV, Gods, Penises and Pills, Hot and Bothered,
Race Juice: An Elixir for the Soul, Election
Collectibles, Eye of the Storm, and Umatilla. See
www.unamericanfilmfest.com for full descriptions.
All proceeds go to Altar Magazine, a forum for
critical thought, coalition building, artistic
creativity, and activism, in order to print the second
issue, which will feature articles such as Myopia by
Inga Muscio, Arting Up the Revolution, Concrete Blonde
Interview, Celie’s Revenge: Hip-hop Betrays Black
Women, No Justice No Peace: a critique within the
peace movement, Scott Heron Interview (Prefuse 73,
Savath + Savales), and much more from writers and
artists living all over the world.
If you will not be able to attend, but would still
like to contribute, here are your options:
$5 gets you a copy of Altar Magazine #2
$8 gets you Altar Magazine #1 & #2
$20 gets you both issues and an Altar Magazine t-shirt
If you donate $100 or more (individually or as a group
effort), we will print a 1/4 page advertisement for
the non-profit/activist organization of
* send cash, check or money order made out to 'Altar
PO Box 5952, Atlanta GA 31107-0952
* use a Credit Card via PayPal by following this link:
We ask that all donations by sent by July 1st. Please
email with any questions or for more information.
In Peace & Solidarity,
Mandy Van Deven (info@...)
view full evite at: www.evite.com/alex@.../UnAmericanFilmFest
PO Box 5952
Atlanta, GA 31107
We believe that the personal is political; therefore, all forms of creativity
are inherently political.
Do you Yahoo!?
Yahoo! Calendar - Free online calendar with sync to Outlook(TM).
I am starting a distro dedicated solely to food zines and I need submissions.
As long as your zine is related to food in some way or another, I'll consider it
for distribution. The following are examples I'm looking for:
-zines full of poems about food
-short story collections related to food
-zines about eating
-restaurant review zines
-zines about shopping for food
-zines about working as a chef or other food job
-if it's a zine and it's main topic is related to food, send me a sample!
For distro consideration, send me a sample copy (and a envelope with return
postage if you want it returned, if you don't want it returned, it'll go in a
pile for grab bags if I don't accept it for distro). If I want to carry it, I'll
buy 5-10 copies at your wholesale rate. I pay cash upfront, no trades or
consignment. Please include a e-mail address or SASE so I can contact you if I
need to. My address is:
P. O. Box 715
Weatherford, TX 76086
Greetings all, hope you're having a good day. Ian here from the SPA,
doing some rounds letting people know what's up in Small Press
Association land. We've been on a strong steady climb in membership
for a while now (started in earnest when we formed a relationship
with ICE Press, great bunch of guys they are!) and are fast
approaching 500 registered members on the forum. It's a great time
to get in on the learning/teaching machine known as the SPA, as it's
really taking on a life of it's own.
So what's really going on in the group right now? Here's some
Nine, count 'em 9 new bands have been added to our website listings,
and you can read about them here:
This includes a bunch of new material in our Jukebox, check that out
on this page: http://www.dimestoreproductions.com/Music/
If you're in a band or know one, and would like to see them listed,
here's how to get in:
There is the discussion of the forming of a system for publishers to
use the SPA logo and printing service/ Distribution avenues as a
part of our Imprint. We are currently on the lookout for a full time
co-ordinator who will handle soliciting publications through
traditional and non traditional means, as well as advertising for
the imprint. It will be a job, and will include compensation based
on performance and sales. So to get your head into the thought
pattern here, read the thread, and add your ideas!
Speaking of Distribution, we're having some great conversation about
the development of how Dimestore will be distributing it's
publications at this topic thread.
Finally, the SPA flagship publication, Mysterious Visions Anthology,
will be seeing it's final Digest sized issue soon. After that, we
are planning to relaunch the title in a full size comic size. You
can join in the discussion of how the title will work right now!
So that's about all the big highlights, wanted to mention that we do
have a few new tweaks on the review system for those of you who read
the Small Press/Independent reviews we do: You can now add your own
voice to the fray, and not just click and rate publications 1-5
stars, but add a review of your own about the publication too! Just
another way we try to help create the best buzz about what's good to
read out there we can. Check it out at:
Take care all! Keep spreading the word!
Hey everybody! I apologize for both the off-topic post
AND for the repeat, assuming that yahoomail didn't
actually burp my first attempt at this message...
I'm hoping that one of you readers can help me out
with a link, a service, an idea regarding this article
I'm working on entitled "Raw Truth: The Desire for the
Secondhand." Here's the synopsis:
"A loss of trust in homogenous consumer goods and
shops is breeding a desire for individuality and
emotional security. People are increasingly looking
for 'real things' from the past, the unmanufatures and
the raw. Websites with found objects and pictures,
things with a life of their own."
So be it something like 8 track heaven, or some inside
information on how Urban Outfitters buys up vintage
clothes and resells them at a highly inflated price,
info on any kind of grass roots/recycling movements,
or even some theories on the fascination with old
technology in "The Ring"... if you have a link, an
idea, a zine, a service, anything relating to this
article, please contact me at
Want to chat instantly with your online friends? Get the FREE Yahoo!
heya everyone. sorry for the crosspost- we all commit that sin from
time-to-time. anyway, just shoutin out a holla to let you know my brand new zine
"gnosis" is finally completed! issue #1 inclues comix, zine reviews, an
interview with local semichick punk band the infamous mr. white, ramblings and
more. it's fun. 20 pages, half-sized, and it's got a pink cover. how can you
secondly, my band so ricki is headin out for NYC this weekend. friday we've got
a tour kick-off party here in cleveland at the pit. saturday we'll be stopping
in pittsburgh to see the rxbandits, and by sunday we enter the big apple. if any
of you live around there, please check us out. we're playing arlene grocery, the
continental NY, the orange bear, and a possiblity of one more TBA. july 5th
we'll also be playing american music cafe in PA. check out www.soricki.com for
tour dates and you can hear us at www.mp3.com/soricki. or email me for more
info. would love to meet some other zinesters and get some contacts. come talk
to us if you show =)
well, that's basically all. if anyone wants to trade zines or buy a copy of
gnosis ($1 and two stamps) feel free to email me. if you're just ordering you
can send it to Bri Zine...1016 Mozina Dr....Cleveland, OH 44119. that's my
contact for the time being. if anyone sends stuff to the old contact address,
don't worry, i'll get it eventually. it's just more likely i'll get it quickly
at this new address.
sorry for my long ramble here. it's 4:40 AM and i'm excited for some reason...
-bri zine (f.k.a. kiki d. ries)
gnosis- a brand new zine by moi. issue 1 due out by may / june.
check out my band at www.soricki.com foo!
Do you Yahoo!?
SBC Yahoo! DSL - Now only $29.95 per month!
[Non-text portions of this message have been removed]
Altar Magazine presents...
The UnAmerican Film Festival
with Vision Of The Eternal Peacock
& The Good Players
Wednesday, June 25th at 9pm
The Earl (Atlanta, GA)
Taking its name from the House Un-American Activities Committee
(HUAC), which terrorized the film industry in the 1950s with a witch
hunt that blacklisted 'subversive' writers and filmmakers, the
UnAmerican Film Festival supports films and videos that question the
government and social norms, even at a time when such acts are
deemed "unpatriotic." Our mission is to present fun, smart, engaging
and radical films that offer alternatives to the usual corporate
media sources. Since our successful premiere at Cannes, we have taken
the festival to Paris, London, Tokyo, Berlin, Moscow, and now Atlanta!
S-11Redux, Life or Liberty, A Message to Bin Laden, Flag TV, Gods,
Penises and Pills, Hot and Bothered, Race Juice: An Elixir for the
Soul, Election Collectibles, Eye of the Storm, and Umatilla
See www.unamericanfilmfest.com for full descriptions.
All proceeds go to Altar Magazine, a forum for critical thought,
coalition building, artistic creativity, and activism, in order to
print the second issue, which will feature articles such as Myopia by
Inga Muscio, Arting Up the Revolution, Concrete Blonde Interview,
Celie's Revenge: Hip-hop Betrays Black Women, No Justice No Peace: a
critique within the peace movement, Scott Heron Interview (Prefuse
73, Savath + Savalas), and much more from writers and artists living
all over the world.
If you will not be able to attend, but would still like to
contribute, here are your donation options:
$5 gets you a copy of Altar Magazine #2
$10 gets you Altar Magazine #1 & #2
$20 gets you both issues and an Altar Magazine t-shirt
If you donate $100 or more (individually or as a group effort), we
will print a 1/4 page advertisement for the non-profit/activist
organization of your choice.
* Send cash, check or money order made out to 'Altar Magazine' at:
PO Box 5952, Atlanta GA 31107-0952
* Use a Credit Card by clicking on the following link:
We ask that all donations by sent by July 1st. Please email with any
questions or for more information. We appreciate your support of this
independent media project. We would not exist without you!
BUY PHOTOGRAPHIC PRINTS OR SERVICES AND SUPPORT ALTAR MAGAZINE
Buy photographic prints or services from Fradin Hood, LLC and support
the publication of Altar Magazine. Visit their fine art photography
and photo services sections at www.fradinhood.com. If you buy
photographic prints or services and indicate Altar Magazine as your
organization of choice they will send us your name as a donor and a
check for 10% of your purchase.
You can still get a copy of Issue One FEATURING...
* Mr. Lif on the politics of hip-hop
* Sleater Kinney, ladymen in effect
* Elaine Brown and Constance Curry, two civil rights activists talk
about current politics
* shebang!, and all-girl breaking crew from Canada chat about being
* Bitch & Animal, self-described tittie tribal hoe down funk
* Before and After September 11th: Notes from an Anti-Racist,
Feminist Patriot by Zillah Eisenstein
* Justice is a Human Right, the struggle for prison reform by Vanessa
* A Look at the Emergence of Graffiti Culture by J. Jarosz
* Hajira: Part One, a short story about a friendship between two
Pakistani women struggling to define themselves within the confines of
their expected societal roles
The cost is $3 per issue. If you live outside the U.S. please add a
few dollars to help with shipping costs.
You can purchase your copy using a credit card via Paypal by clicking
on the following link:
Or you may send payment to:
PO Box 5952
Atlanta, GA 31107-0952
For more information about Altar Magazine, visit our website at
www.altarmagazine.com or email us with any questions at
info@.... We appreciate your support!
Altar Magazine believes that problems are not monolithic, and neither
are solutions. It is imperative to have socially progressive women
and men fighting on all fronts of the movement whether that is anti-
racist work, feminism, anti-heterosexism, economic justice or any
other political action. Altar Magazine exists within a community that
is fragmented, but not broken. It exists in a time when coalition is
crucial and must be implemented.
We believe that the personal is political; therefore, all forms of
creativity are inherently political.
We want to create a space where critical thought and understanding
happen simultaneously. This is important because before we can create
social change we must be able to re-imagine communities that foster
difference. We must be able to take ownership of that which we do not
claim in order to effectively critique this oppressive system that we
know and perpetuate.
Social change is not momentous. It is a process. Our hope is that
each individual recognizes his or her place within this system of
AMC saw the premeire of InterStitial #1, my new magazine that deals
with politics and music, like NeuFutur used to do, albeit much more
well thought out.
InterStitial #1 deals with the Top Ten Movies You've Never Seen, The
Red Hot Valentines : An Interview, The Lancaster Punk Show, Against
Me!, Warren Zevon : Forgotten Rock Star, and UPC Generation, along
with guest writer Mike Dikk and his thoughts on mix tapes. However,
most important in this issue is the space I devote to information
about Lawrence V. Texas and the sodomy laws which still strangle
freedom in the United States.
Like all of my zines, InterStitial #1 costs one dollar. It is 7 by
8.5 inches, 28 pages, and printed in full black and white. I do
trades and would love for you all to contact me at editor (at)
neufutur dot com . I am actively looking for other distro
consideration, as currently, this zine can only be picked up from
Tomatoes Equal Love Distro, and Knucklehead Distro.
I'm having a sale on The Cheap Vegan. From now until June 30, 2003 you can get
three issues of The Cheap Vegan for $2, shipping included. The Rabbit Fodder
Addict Cookzine is also still available for $1 + stamp. My address is:
P. O. Box 715
Weatherford, TX 76086
Please specify which issues you want. Here's a list of what's avaible.
#1--Homemade vs store-bought, salvage stores, cookbooks, staples, the wonder of
calculators, price notebooks, comparison shopping, what do I eat now?, recipes
for veggie burritos and tortillas.
#2--Cheap vegan baking, recycle your food, TVP, homemade vs store-bought again,
chili and marshmallow recipes.
#3--More cheap vegan baking, muffins, sweet bread, peanut butter cups, burrito
soup, and breakfast bread pudding recipes, recycling your food . . . again, gift
#4--What to keep in the kitchen, Coupons: Clip ?em or Can ?em, Cheap
Valentines, review of Budget Living magazine, recipes for: pasta sauce, ketchup,
simple potatoes, gravy.
#5--The Big DIY Issue. How to make soymilk, pasta, egg roll wrappers, seitan
(and what do with it), nut butter, sushi, granola, barbecue sauce and veggie
#6--Foraging for food, how to make vegan ice cream, veggie burgers, cheap baking
substitutions, stretching your broccoli, eating out cheap.
#7--how to make your own fake cheese with nutritional yeast, make yer own
cookies, cookbook review, zucchini milk, what to do with that darn okara (the
soybean mush you strain out of your homemade soymilk), make yer own tortilla
chips, generic, pick-yer-poison soup recipe and other thingies.
#8--random things to do to save money, price comparisons of various vegan
breakfasts, recommended reading for cheap vegans (books, zines, magazines), the
wondrous wonders of cornmeal, why be a cheap vegan?, polenta recipe, and a few
#9--recipes for quick fried rice, beans and rice, quicker, easier vegan peanut
butter cups, how to show your significant other the wonderous joys of cheap
veganism, chic frugality (making cheap knock-offs of expensive goodies, what to
do with zucchini, things to do with bananas and a few other thingies.
More info about these zines and others at: http://cheapvegan.cjb.net
If you've been timid about trying The Cheap Vegan, there's no better time to try
some copies while they're cheap.
the 2003 san francisco zinefest will take place on august 9th and 10th
from 10 am to 4pm at cellspace 2050 bryant street
san francisco, ca.
there is still tablespace left, you can get a registration form at
if you are interested in putting on a workshop, there is a workshop
proposal form at http://sfzinefest.com/workshop.html
there will be several prefest fundraising events at long haul 3124
Shattuck Ave in Berkeley.
the first will be a dinner and reading night on july 13th at 7:30pm. there
will be an open meeting beforehand at 7pm for anyone interested in
volunteering/getting involved (there is also a volunteer form online at
there will be a second dinner/reading night on the 27th at 7:30, as well
as a movie night on the 26th at 8:30 featuring Grrlyshow, Get off my
Wagon, and some additional shorts.
on sat the 9th of august there will be a zinefest afterparty at Pond 324
14th St b/w Mission and Valencia St in San Francisco this will potentially
be a joint event with the Hickee comic/zine collective and Needles & Pens.
We will be having a potluck and reading
at the zinefest we will be having a raffle as well as a free table. any
donations for either of these would be greatly appreciated and can be sent
to sfzinefest 988 fulton st #213, san francisco, ca 94117.
to recieve further updates about the zinefest, send an email to
Hello, everyone, from the Small Press Association...
As always, We're on the move with more new ways to get more people
excited about small press. Today's experiment: an exercise in word
of mouth advertising. I'm not going to repeat the information we put
on the web page we're going to ask you to look at here, so I'll tell
you instead what ISN'T on the page, and we'll see how far we can
take this and how fast.
Our distribution system has a solid foundation. We've been building
it and refining it for years. What it's really lacking right now is
comic stores using the system. We've seen, over the years, lots of
distribution plans for small press come and go. And we've seen a lot
of news/reviews zines come and go. Obscurity Unlimited is both a
news/review magazine AND a distribution system. So we've had our
prejudices to overcome. What the comings and goings have done is to
set up small press as a disjointed, unorganized, breeding ground of
a place, that larger companies feed off of. How does a distributor
handle such a market? The truth is they can't. That's why those
things keep coming and going. We looked at it and said, why are the
reviewzines and distribution plans separate things? Thus OU was
born. No one, in the history of small press, has approached the
bringing of small press/independent publications as a job. The
distributors and newszine editors always had 40+ hour a week day
jobs. And you're never going to get something solid going if you're
doing it in your spare time, no matter how good the ideas are. So
that's one of the reasons 2 years ago, I quit my day job, and
started the Small Press Association. Not just because I could, and
that my day job was killing me, but because all the ideas and
projects that have been set in motion since then NEED someone
running them as a job. Because it just won't gel any other way.
Some of the great things our system allows:
· It allows a store to pre-order copies of your publications
without putting any money up front, they pay for the issue when it
gets there. This allows great series, that are published on
irregular schedules, to make it into stores without the store owners
having to "keep an eye out" for it. They can simply tell us that
they want to carry the title, and how many copies they'd like when
it comes out, and when the publisher is ready to publish, we can
tell them how many copies we'll be wanting. Individuals can also
order individual copies from us this way.
· It allows a store to learn of new things they don't hear of
in Previews, learn which are good, and educate their customers by
getting OU into their hands as well.
· It allows the individual publisher who was doing the leg
work in their local stores to get their book in, to step back and
let OU increase their sales and presence. So when the new issue is
out, you're not asking a store owner if they want copies, they will
already have them on order, you'll be asking when you can come in to
do a signing of your book, and meet the public.
Anyway, those are just a few things we foresee. We can imagine that
there are more things that can be done. As always, the SPA is a
collaborative project, that relies on individuals believing in the
system to make it work. We've come a long way in 2 years. Here's
where YOU can really start making a difference with us. Dimestore
has been around for 17 years. Obscurity Unlimited has been around
for 4 years. The Small Press Association, 2 years. It is our goal to
change how small press gets into the hands of readers, so we've
developed a new system to help those who help us do so. You can read
more about it on this page:
http://www.dimestoreproductions.com/Obscurity/WOM.asp And please
feel free to discuss your questions and concerns. All e-mail will be
responded to ASAP. Thank you all for taking the time to read this.
hey everyone. bri zine here. just writing to inform all of you about MORE new
projects i'm working on. some of you may have known me under the alias kiki d.
ries before, and you may have known of my zine "culture sh*ck". recently i
decided to just go by a nickname given to me by a friend (bri zine) and i
decided to start a new zine and focus only on it (gnosis). well, i also tried
running a distro awhile back called rawdaylight distro. some of you may know the
whole ups-and-downs of that experience. being poor and running a distro do not
mix well together. i chose to wait until i had a decent amount of cash to
restart a distro, and now i finally am! it's called The Evil Toaster Pastry
Brigade. items that were left over from rawdaylight have been moved to this new
catalog. you can view the new site at
http://www.geocities.com/eviltoasterpastry. there you can view our so-far-small
catalog, submit items, and order items.
so an additional note- if you have a zine, CD, craft, etc. you'd like distroed,
email me at eviltoasterpastry@... or visit the site to fill out a form.
thanks for dealing with my constant cross-posting. i feel like a bad person, but
it's so much easier than writing long brand new emails to each group. hope
you're all doing well. oh! if anybody wants a link up on my site, email it to
me and we'll exchange. peace! -bri zine
Do you Yahoo!?
SBC Yahoo! DSL - Now only $29.95 per month!
[Non-text portions of this message have been removed]
Please pardon the crosspost!
Announcement #1: The Pleasant Unicorn Store/Distro- the only distro
dedicated to food zines and not much else- is now up and running. It's located
at http://diystore.cjb.net . We currently have 13 food zines in stock with more
on the way. If you have a food zine you'd like to have distro'd, e-mail me at:
nurdsteph@... and we'll work something out!
Announcement #2: The Cheap Vegan #10 is out after a 1 month hiatus and
ready for all you hungry people to devour. This issue has a new format. Half-
size, 14 pages + cover, has a snazzier layout, and actually looks like a zine.
This issue includes: recipe for the Universal Casserole (Vegan Tightwads
Unite Under One Casserole!), how to clean your bathroom cheap with
vinegar, sprouting, hummus recipe, faux frugal tips that make me want to
break something, eating on the road, and more!
It's $1 + stamp to:
P. O. Box 715
Weatherford, TX 76086
Thanks, and may your day royally rock!
Free, controversial and interactive media commentary
Premiere Issue - Volume 1, Issue 1. July 2003
Copyright 2003 Project Mayhem
IN THIS ISSUE::
- "The Facial" by Douglas Rushkoff
- Interview with Douglas Rushkoff
- Movie Review - "The Matrix Reloaded" by Steven Adams
- Movie Review - "The Matrix Reloaded" by Jim Kelly
- Music Feature - "Oasis - To Praise and to Bury" by Dave Blue
- Music Feature - "Oasis - Just to Bury" by Buzz
Welcome to the first issue of Media Jam, a new free publication
discussing media and its effects on us. In this premiere issue we hope
to provide you with some good reading material and set the stage for the
next issues to follow.
Format: We are a couple of ambitious writers/publishers trying to launch
a free, non ad-laden newsletter without a whole lot of experience at
publishing. So hopefully you won't be turned off by the lack of fancy
formatting or the plain text, straight-ahead style that at least our
initial issue displays.
Subscriptions: Subscriptions are free, and all you need to do to get on
the list is send an e-mail to firstname.lastname@example.org - yes,
I know it's a Yahoo Group, but rest assured it is not intended to become
a discussion forum that will clog your inbox with e-mails. The only
mails you will receive once signed up will be each issue of the
publication. People who want to subscribe by snail-mail and receive a
hard copy instead of an electronic version, write to Media Jam, 708
Novelda Rd., Alhambra, CA 91108 USA.
Contributors: We are always looking for writers with something
interesting to say that fits the broad topic of media, and we're hoping
that as this issue goes out, it will entice others who have articles or
ideas to come forward and send them to us for publication. You'll get
paid exactly what we Editors are getting paid - nothing - but the world
will get to read your views and in contributing you help to build the
sort of interactive environment we're looking to establish. Letters of
inquiry or writing samples can be sent to either one of the editors;
e-mail them to davezero@... or to contactbuzz@... -
snail-mail submissions can be sent to the address above under
Reviews: Got a band with a demo CD? An independent movie you'd like
reviewed? Maybe you yourself have a review you could author on an
appropriate topic. In any case, if you'd like us to review something,
send it in.
Distribution: Besides sending a copy to everyone on the electronic
subscription list and the snail mail list, we're hoping that you the
readers can help us out a bit with distribution. While Media Jam
originates on the internet, it is designed not to be a
stare-at-the-monitor publication, but one to print out and read in hard
copy form. So print out your copy, and when you're done, pass it along
to someone else who might have interest. Additionally, we will be
announcing locations where hard copies of Media Jam can be picked up; if
you know of an appropriate place where you think they might be willing
to let us drop off a small stack, please, let us know.
One section we intend to fill starting next issue is to maintain a
Letters to the Editor section here, in which feedback, commentary,
suggestions, and questions by readers can be printed and if necessary,
answered. So once again, please, don't just sit back on your couch and
veg - we need your feedback and in giving it to us you help to build a
more exciting issue next time.
by Douglas Rushkoff
original source: http://www.rushkoff.com/essay/facial.html
I'm not talking about the latest place in Soho to get mud pack
treatments, but a new preferred climax strategy for young men raised on
porn videos. That's right: coitus interuptus, once considered a
particularly frustrating form of birth control, has been popularized by
the "pull out cum shot" into an erotic thrill.
"I always cum on her stomach or her face," a 24-year-old web designer
who works in the Flatiron district explained to me. "I never do it
inside. That's a waste. I like to see it happening."
Forgoing the sensuous pleasure of a mutually climactic embrace, porn vid
aficionados like Zach choose instead to emulate the sexual practices on
which they have been weaned. With 70% of all porn videos ending up in
the hands of minors, according to the "Christian Alliance for Sexual
Recovery," it's no small wonder that a generation of now sexually active
young men have been imprinted by viewing the practice in an emotionally
The pull-out cum shot was originally developed as a way for porn stars
to prove they had truly climaxed. The "money shot." But masturbating to
such imagery apparently has its side effects. While young Playboy users
of the 60's and 70's may have learned to over-objectify a woman's
breasts and buttocks, video users of the 90's appear to have objectified
the entire sex act.
Dan, a senior at upper east side's Dalton School, has used porn videos
since he was 11 years old, and credits them with teaching him the varied
joys of watching oneself ejaculate. "You can do it on her stomach, her
tits, or her face" he explains. Then, as if describing the point
valuations of a video game, "the face is worth the most."
So what's going on here? Life imitating art, sex imitating media, or
fetish imitating film? All I know is that if porn videos had been
available when I was an adolescent, I would have probably done almost
anything to get ahold of them--and then canceled most of my afternoon
activities to use them before my parents got home. Would they have had
the same effect on me?
"People learn to become aroused by things," explains New York
psychiatrist Dr. Julie Holland. "You learn to be aroused by pairing the
sensory with the visual. It's a classical conditioning. You just start
to associate the sensoral pleasures with whatever visual imagery is
being presented to you at the time." According to Holland, this could
work for almost any image. "In theory, you could create any fetish in
somebody this way."
So far, so good--from a non-judgmental standpoint, anyway. There's no
harm in extra-coital orgasms, and perhaps even a bit of extra safety in
this viral age. But what would it mean to have an entire generation of
young men who prefer the demonstrative squirt to the intimate throb? It
adds a whole new set of parameters to the already long list of sexual
performance metrics: range, accuracy, trajectory...
There may be even more psychologically powerful undercurrents at work,
here, as well. Dr. Holland believes the symbolic degradation inherent to
the facial may well be behind its growing popularity. "The whole idea is
very ego-syntonic [in agreement] with the idea that sex is dirty. That
you shouldn't be watching a video and masturbating."
I can't help but think the trend is also fueled, at least in part, by
our increasingly confused relationship with technology and media. We
live in a world where the measure of a man's tongue is its ability to
imitate the frequency of a battery-operated vibrator. Likewise, as we
grow increasingly dependent on video and computer simulations for the
imagery in our fantasy lives, we may begin to aspire towards that which
the machine can recreate, rather than that we can create ourselves.
Zach scoffs at such suggestions, believing his fetish has less to do
with his video porn practices than the effects of AIDS. "Who wants to
shoot into a rubber?" he says, unwittingly blaming yet another piece of
technology for his extra-vaginal release. "At least this way you
actually do something to her."
INTERVIEW WITH DOUGLAS RUSHKOFF (6/29/03)
(MJ = Media Jam, DR = Douglas Rushkoff
MJ: You spoke of the liberating power of the internet and peer-to-peer
communication in the past, you've now witnessed ten years of big
business trying to step in and regulate these things. To pick a specific
that's on a lot of minds, what are your feelings about music
downloading/file-sharing over the internet and the threat it poses to
the traditional record company retail model? How do you see that system
evolving, in say, the next five years?
DR: Well, to be honest, I've never been a big fan of music sharing as an
ideal use for the Internet. Compared with person-to-person
communication, it feels like a step backwards.
My passion for the Internet stems from its ability to allow people to
interact with one another, instead of with packaged content. The
businesspeople you refer to who successfully, if only temporarily,
derailed the interactive age did so by pushing their agenda that
"content is king." They did this because they weren't making any real
money of people sharing themselves with one another on BBS's and in chat
rooms. Big business doesn't want people blogging - it wants people
The first stage towards getting people to buy stuff is to convince them
that their own thoughts, words, and creations mean less than those
created by professionals of one kind or another. Home-made cupcakes are
to be experienced as less tasty (or as a less special gift) than
store-bought, or at least Betty Crocker.
Content was not really king on the internet; contact was. It was the
interpersonal aspects of the internet that were so truly threatening to
the media empires. We were beginning to enjoy one another more than
Like everyone else, I got a perverse delight out of getting music for
free - particularly because I remember how music got cheaper to make but
more expensive to buy once they switched to the CD format. We all know
how the record industry screws over artists and consumers, alike. Radio
even more so. Sharing these tracks felt like a little consumer
revolution. But that's all it was - a revolution for us in our roles as
consumers, not as human beings. If as much effort were spent, say, on so
cial justice as we've spent on fighting for our rights to music, we
might live in a more peaceful world.
As for the future, I think Steve Jobs may have it right: sell people
individual songs, in formats that are more portable. I think music
recording technologies may bifurcate for a while into two distinct
formats - one for super high fidelity at home, analog use. And the other
a tiny but compromised digital format for satellite radio and iPod-like
devices. For the latter, we're looking at new pricing schemes, that's
all. And that'll just be whatever the market can bear.
MJ: On a more general scope, I still find your writing in Cyberia
fascinating and somewhat prophetic. Given what we've seen, not just with
the net, but with the last ten years in general, how much of the
"Cyberian vision" is still possible?
DR: Well, I always talked about the 'designer reality' posed by Cyberia
as a window that opens for a certain period of time. I still do believe
we are in a renaissance, but probably at the tail end of it. By
renaissance, I mean that we have gained enhanced perspective on our
world - our reality. We can see it all in a new context - that of space
travel, holography, chaos math, the internet. It's like putting a new
frame around the whole thing - or pulling out to see the frame that was
Along with a renaissance comes the newfound ability to redesign things.
Our world becomes 'open source,' and we become aware of the fact that
things aren't just pre-existing realities - they are arbitrarily
decided. Everything from Microsoft Office to the street plan of your
city was designed by someone, with certain agendas. So much of what we
think of as fixed 'hardware' is actually software, capable of being
With the continued hacking of the electoral system by the 'powers that
be,' an artificially perpetuated addiction to oil, and an increasingly
monopolized mediaspace, we have to acknowledge that the window of
possibility may be closing. Our ability to exploit novelty may have
But this doesn't mean we can't still lay down some clues for future
generations - clues that they can have access to the control knobs of
civilization if they choose to take them.
MJ: Recently you've been writing a lot on religion. Remembering your
initial observation - which I agree entirely with - that rave was a form
of religion as expressed in Cyberia and other articles, can you trace
your thinking on the issue of religion from that realization to your
DR: Well, I've always been interested in why people believe stuff. I
mean, why they truly believe in things. What do they think is simply
incontrovertible? And how did they get to believe the thing?
So the relationship between access to a designer reality, and the belief
in a fixed reality, has always been central to my inquiry. The notion of
content vs. contact I spoke of before is really just another way of
understanding the same interplay. Content that becomes truly fixed and
permanent is what we call a 'sacred truth.' It is not up for discussion.
So, as a media theorist who believes that discussion is of paramount
importance in maintaining a free society with autonomous individuals and
groups, I look at how a person or group is able to establish a territory
so profoundly that it is no longer up for discussion. And the religions
really were about this. The ultimate 'belief' institutions.
I began re-exploring Judaism because it seemed to me that this religion
was really meant as an anti-religion. As a way to break religion's hold
over consciousness. Judaism was invented as the process by which people
can get over their religions, and maintain living conversations,
instead. But it seems to have turned into just another religion. How did
that happen? Why? And can its original process be revived? Rebooted?
MJ: Noted writer James Michener once made the observation, to
paraphrase, that one of the major differences between Judaism and
Christianity was that Judaism addressed itself more to the question of
how men and women can live together in harmony in a society in the real
world, while Christianity promises an intense personal relationship with
God but provides absolutely no structure for how men can live and work
together in peace. What are your views on this take, and in what ways
would you say it's affected what you are doing with your Open Source
DR: I don't really understand it. I suppose he's referring to the
messianic qualities of a narrative religion like Christianity - or like
the Lurianic branch of Judaism, which looks forward to the Messiah.
It's a bit oversimplified, but I can see truth in the idea that, at
their most simple, Judaism promotes an open-ended inquiry, while
Christianity has a fixed and ordained outcome. So in Judaism, people are
required to negotiate truth, together. It's a process of building a
collaborative narrative. In Christianity, since you already know the
story, it's more a matter of each individual conforming to its plot and
But Jesus said a whole lot about behavior - no matter how Paul may have
turned these behavioral prescriptions into a static, passive religion.
So it's a bit facile and distorted for Michener to claim that
Christianity has absolutely no structure for living together in peace.
As for Open Source, true enough. Judaism was meant as an open source
religion, through which people (the rabbis, initially) could revise and
amend the codes. It is a continuing conversation. Every commentary on
Torah is, in many ways, as holy as the Torah itself. The process of
Judaism is continuing 'revelation' through collaboration. I'm hoping
that my book (Nothing Sacred) and my website
(http://www.opensourcejudaism.com) will help give people the courage and
tools to revisit the source code of Judaism and restore some of its
original operating principles. Namely, to turn it into a conversation,
MJ: Following on that question, what words of advice or caution would
you give to someone who grew uip in a Christian tradition but is excited
by the prospect of your latest project and would want to create an "Open
Source Christianity" with some of the same themes - a place for
Christians to speak as equals and discuss issues of their religion and
the direction it's going. Do you think such a thing would even be
DR: Yeah - if you hang out with the Jesuits. As I see it, smart and
conscious people in every religion exist. And they understand that a lot
of religion is to be understood metaphorically or allegorically rather
than literally. I've had great talks with Catholic Priests who do not
take the entirety of the Bible literally.
In order for a Christian to open the source of Christianity, he or she
might have to confront the impermanence of notions such as "salvation."
This could prove very difficult for those who are desperately looking
forward to Armageddon. Life is hard, and some people prefer to know that
their future is absolutely locked in. They wouldn't want an open source
religious discussion, because they've already signed onto a fixed
narrative. The end must come for them, or they've blown it.
But Christians who choose instead to have a living relationship with
Christ and his words (as we know them) will have a great time with an
Open Source Christianity that experiments with how to turn Christ's
messianism into a living truth rather than a point.
MJ: You once wrote that we should let the big fish build the internet
for us, with a view to seizing it back once they've developed it to our
satisfaction. But how far should that go, if it hasn't already gone far
enough? More importantly, are we, the non-hacking proletariat, even
capable of conquering and flourishing in a proprietary internet?
DR: I think we're already taking the internet back. Mainly, by building
interactive interfaces over the intentionally non-interactive World Wide
Web. I'm quite excited by Blogger (web logs) as well as the
proliferation of web sites with active bulletin boards.
Broadband has brought more people online - people who didn't have the
patience for a-synchronous communication - and everyone is getting to
see that what's sexy about this medium is not buying stuff (we're all
too poor, these days, anyway) but the other people.
The thing I wrote that you're referring to was written before the
dot.com crash. And they did fail. And most of them are gone. And the
technology is still here - and it's just beginning to come into its own
as a communications network, again.
MJ: You've often expressed a certain distrust of the corporate world.
How do you reconcile this with your work with Sony, for example?
DR: I have given talks to pretty much anyone who invites me. I'd give a
talk for Arafat's crowd, Sharon's crowd. Why not influence everyone you
can? You think the people who sit in the chairs in an auditorium at Sony
are no longer people because that's where they get their paycheck?
Corporations do not exist. They are not conscious beings. There is no
such thing, really, as Sony. That's what I tell those people when I'm
allowed to contact them. I try to wake them up, and give them the
courage to take control of a corporation that they think controls them.
You'd be happier if I spoke to, say, kids at raves or Burning Man - who
all happen to go to work for Sony, or worse, the next day, anyway?
MJ: So then whose side are you on, anyway?
DR: Well, I suppose you think that the best way to change the policies
of, say, Starbucks, is to throw rocks through their windows. That's
possible, if you believe that the polarization of a war is the best way
to resolve differences. I don't. I think it exacerbates the problem, and
further distances people who should be on your side.
Don't you get it? We're all on the same side. It's not the people
working at Starbucks who are the problem - it is their passivity to
operating system of the corporation. No one thinks they are in charge.
By ignoring and hating the majority of human beings in this nation, who
happen to work in corporations, you would only further empower the
corporations to continue their assimilation of our population into the
No - don't be a fool. Don't surrender to the notion that you are a part
of the 'counterculture.' We are not the counterculture - we are the
culture. The dead corporate beasts - they are the counterculture,
attempting to replace our autonomy with roboticized predictability.
Unionize humanity, instead.
MJ: Anyone reading your work can see where your sympathies lie, but
neverthless, in your writing, you maintain a certain distance from your
material. How big a deal to you are your political beliefs? Do you think
people have a tendency to politicize things that maybe they shouldn't?
DR: I donąt think my political views are so important - and I think they
stand a better chance of alienating readers than doing anything
important for them. I'm working transformation and education on a
different level. So I don't generally tell people who I vote for, or
whether I believe in God and all that.
Of course, because I don't talk about God they assume I'm an atheist
(I'm not, though my God may not be like theirs). Because I don't talk
about politics and I have some radical views, they assume I'm a Green
(when I actually voted for Gore, but for more complex reasons than I can
get into, here).
My political beliefs feel more like articulations - particular
implementations - of my deeper priorities. I don't really like to have
beliefs, as such. If I do, I try to keep them provisional. So I don't
"believe" in the Democratic party. I think they're just as corrupt as
Politics always seems so temporary, too. I'm less concerned with the
parties than with their techniques. I care about whether they
communicate in fair ways, or if they use fear to program their
constituencies into submission.
MJ: You witnessed, first-hand, the rise of the cultures surrounding both
house music and the internet, from revolutionary fringe movements to the
megabuck-generating global monoliths they now are. But whose doing was
that? Who won the battle in each case? Did the world succumb to the joys
of Ecstasy and the internet, or did these succumb to the whims of the
DR: I think you should read my novel, Ecstasy Club. It's largely about
these false distinctions. The hippy freaks wouldn't exist without the
conservative power-mongers, and vise versa. The need to understand the
world as "us" (good guys) and "them" (bad guys), is the problem. It's
not the 'bad guys,' themselves. We good guys - the fun-loving
counterculture - require the bad guys for our self-definition. That's
why this self-definition is obsolete in a post-dualistic schema.
What happened to rave is a lot like what happened to the Internet. We
wanted acceptance, right? We wanted the movement to grow and spread.
Hackers saw in the corporations that were supporting them the means to
enhance and distribute software that could change the world. A dance
track picked up by a major label? Well, that's the Moby story, right?
It's just a marriage, and everyone knows what they're getting into.
Where both subcultures may have made a mistake is in ignoring the
economic reality surrounding their decisions. The rave movement was
revolutionary not because the music played at 120 beats per minute, but
because it was an alternative economy. Dancing in fields meant no money
for organized crime and pay-offs to the polices (who control the club
world in most cities). The internet meant shareware and freeware that
cut out IBM and the entire Nasdaq stock exchange.
So the Internet and electronic music scenes represented alternative
economies - gift economies, in many cases - that could have had a
broader impact were they not surrendered so quickly to fixed decks of
corporate capitalism. That's why Burning Man grew so quickly, I think -
people were looking for what they had lost.
MJ: You've had many dealings with those figures operating right on the
point of the genius/madness axis: Terence McKenna, Tim Leary, and
numerous less prominent trip-heads - in particular, the DMT-dropping
psychonauts you encounter in 'Cyberia'. In your opinion, were those DMT
subjects genuinely experiencing enlightenment, or were they simply
sending themselves nuts? How does one tell the difference between lunacy
and these peculiar forms of 'genius'? From where I'm sitting, the lines
are blurred, if they exist at all.
DR: You can only tell the difference in terms of what the person brings
back. What they see out there - whether in a visionquest or drug trip -
is only as valuable as what they can retain and communicate to others.
If people only hear insanity, then that's what it is. Because
transformation - evolution - is a team sport. We don't do it alone, I
donąt think. I think individuality is a fiction. So the ability to
transmit what you experienced in a meaningful way, either through direct
communication or indirectly over time through a more compassionate mode
of behavior, is all that matters.
MJ: Right - no modesty, no ducking the question, no shifting
uncomfortably in your seat. I'm holding a gun to your head and I'm going
to pull the trigger unless I get a straight answer: who or what is God?
DR: If I could put the unfolding of the universe into words, I might be
able to give you some idea. But I can't. So just shoot me.
MJ: Why are you books so bloody hard to get hold of in Britain?
Some of your publishing companies are a little nuts. They made a
printing error on Coercion, and ended up with a second trade paperback
edition instead of a mass market edition. When they realized their
mistake they just pulled the book.
Ecstasy Club had a good run, but they just canceled that. And Media
Virus never made it over.
Still, Children of Chaos is still in print. And so is Bull. And Cyberia,
2nd Edition, is more available over there than over here.
I'm trying to get someone in the UK to publish "Nothing Sacred," but all
the publishers have said there's no Jews in England. Go figure.
But - thanks to those big corporations - everything is available on
Amazon.co.uk They're good for something...
Movie Review: "THE MATRIX RELOADED"
by Steven Adams
I went to see Matrix: Reloaded the other night. Since it was opening
night we went to an early show and avoided having to queue up for ages,
which turned out to be a good thing when we saw that the lines were
massive for the later shows.
Anyway, without spoiling the movie for anyone....its not that good.
The philosophy-lite is thrown on pretty heavily, some of the pictures
are nice and pretty, the shots of Zion are pretty cool.
The ending is interesting, but here's a tip for all of you who are going
to go see it. Don't bother waiting for the credits to finish rolling to
see the preview of Matrix: Revolutions, the credits go on FOREVER, and
the preview is quite short.
Matrix: Reloaded was what I'd expected, like the Star Wars prequels,
you're going to see them because they're big movies in a series and
you've seen all the other parts of the series. And part of you is
probably going to react to Matrix Reloaded the way that a lot of people
responded to Phantom Menace or Attack of the Clones - beautiful visuals,
some good storylines and effects, but a lingering sense that this most
recent episode didn't quite match up quality-wise when compared to your
memories of the original Star Wars trilogy or the first Matrix movie.
If you liked the style of the Matrix, expect a hell of a lot more of
that slow-mo stuff; lots of it looks like something from a Japanese
console game. You know, big flowing coats and robes flowing stylishly as
the characters fight (not flapping about and getting in the way like
you'd expect). The effects are good quality, which is something. Keanu
gives his usual performance (or lack thereof) as do the others.
Matrix: Reloaded isn't a waste of time to see, but it left me rather
indifferent. Matrix: Reloaded is akin to Empire Strikes Back (though not
anywhere near as good, I would watch that movie standalone, not this),
its a "middle piece of the trilogy", which means a lot of it is just
setting the stage for the final episode.
Revolutions might be a good movie, hopefully they'll ditch some of the
The beginning and middle are ho-hum, the ending section (two spots in
particular) are interesting.
The very end, well, I was looking for a bacta tank and a robot testing a
mechanical hand. (note: this isn't a spoiler, its just something both
myself and Net thought of the end section).
Overall, go see it on cheapo day, maybe take in an afternoon matinee, or
at least go at a time when you won't have to queue for it.
Movie Review: "THE MATRIX RELOADED" (alternate)
by Jim Kelly
WARNING: mild spoilers included
After reading several critic's reviews of the Matrix Reloaded I was at
first unsure what to expect. But after seeing the movie twice,
discussing it all weekend with my girl, and then hearing the reaction of
6th graders I work with this week, I am becoming more and more convinced
that most critics have the mental capacity of the average 12 year old.
I find it highly ironic that the critics and 6th graders have the same
common criticism: first hour is boring with too much talking and
"philosophy-lite" and the special effects get slammed a little for being
too over the top. While the Matrix Reloaded is not a "perfect" movie,
it must be remembered that no movie ever is and the preconceived
expectations for a sequel that follows a classic like the Matrix often
heavily influence the critic. It should also be remembered that this
is the second movie of a planned trilogy and as such, it is inherently a
different breed that just about all stand alone movies. Like the first
Matrix when it first came out, this one is packed with so much symbolism
and intention that a casual first viewing will most likely not at all
reveal the depth to the Matrix Reloaded.
Sixth graders, movie critics, and even intelligent hockey playing
computer programmers have criticized the philosophical aspects of the
Matrix Reloaded. It is easy to understand why a sixth grader might not
pick up on all the subtleties of this sequel in their desire to see more
Neo vs. Agent Smith, but most critics that diss Reloaded's
"philosophy-lite" seem to fail to grasp all the subtle philosophy.
While it might be easy to to critique a movie for having too much
pretentious philosophy (ie. Waking Life), Reloaded succeeds in SHOWING
philosophy in a way that few sci-fi movies can.
Reloaded succeeds in doing what it intends to do as the middle child of
a planned trilogy. It serves as the link between the beginning and the
end and for every question from the Matrix it answers, it poses a new
question. The Matrix presented several deep ideas, from the expanded
Descartes question on the nature of reality and Beaudrillard's Simulacra
and Simulations to the metaphor for how the power elites of our world
control the masses through ideas. The most obvious symbolism though
from the first movie is how it presents a contemporary take on the whole
Messiah/Savior myth. Reloaded goes off in a different direction
philosophical to some extent with both what is said and what isn't said.
As a classic piece of modern filmmaking the first Matrix appears to
arrive at its logical conclusion. With Neo flying off a la Superman
style, the rise of Neo into the Savior/Messiah role is complete. But
Reloaded succeeds in slowly tearing down this notion of an omnipotent
Neo. Reloaded unveils a sometimes subtle and sometimes not so subtle
dissection of the myths hailed in the first Matrix. Reloaded unveils a
deeper layer than revealed in the first movie. Borrowing from
post-modern philosophy, Reloaded deconstructs the entire mythos
presented in the first Matrix in a very Derrida/Foucault fashion. One
classic (and overlooked) line in Reloaded is at the end when Morpheus,
the mythological Master of Dreams says, "I have dreamed a dream and now
that dream is gone". While taking apart the pieces of the Matrix,
Reloaded offers a take on the whole Messiah issue with Neo saying ,"I
wish I knew what I was supposed to do."
Several scenes stand out in Reloaded as being more than they first
appear. The showdown with Neo, Trinity, Morpheus seated across from
the Merovingian and Persephone is an excellent scene that is deceptively
Very interesting the Merovingians dialogue is. From when he talks of
"choice is an illusion" created by the powerful, one can't help but make
connections to the current situation in today's world and wonder about
our own choices and how they might have already been selected for us
(though not in the straightforward manner of the Merovingian writing a
program). While other movies deal with this issue quite well from
Minority Report to Memento, it is rare to see such issues presented so
intensely in an "action movie".
While Reloaded deconstructs the philosophical underpinnings of the
Matrix, it also introduces very intriquing new characters. With only a
little screen time , Monica Belluci's Persephone is one of the most
interesting characters yet. While the Oracle gives a brief explanation
of the origin of the Merovingian, Persephone is still a wild card whose
true motivations are not quite apparent. Her dialogue with Neo makes
the audience begin to really question what is occuring especially when
she states "He (the Merovingian) was once like you". Is she implying
the Merovingian was a previous version of "the One"? Is she simply
saying the Merovingian had the capacity to love, which he lost while she
seems to have retained it? Who exactly is Persephone anyway and is it
just revenge on her husband that motivates her to take the actions she
Much of the criticism of Reloaded stems from this delving into
post-modern philosophy. Not just 6th graders and moronic haters
thought the first hour was a bit slow. Apparently the Hollywood action
movie cliche has become so embedded in the pop culture collective
consciousness that any movie that seeks to be more than just flashy eye
candy gets criticized. A 22 year old graphic artist remarked that
there was too much talking and not enough fast paced action while
another older gentleman in the theatre was saying there was too much
flashy FX. If the W. brothers can be faulted for anything in this
sequel it is trying to be something for everyone. They expanded both
the philosophical content and extended the fight scenes while at the
same time adding in two interesting love triangles. While they might
have successfully combined those elements the one element lost in
Reloaded that Matrix excelled at in its first hour was the feeling of
terror at the unknown. The Matrix was a thriller in that sense that
Reloaded was not. But those criticizing Reloaded for that fail to
realize that Reloaded COULD not have duplicated that creeping feeling of
terror because we already know the answer to the question "What is the
Matrix?". Reloaded simply focuses on showing us "How deep the rabbit
The acting in Matrix for the most part is right on. Not many actors
can pull off the "Clueless Messiah" the way Keanu does. He still lacks
a little chemistry with Trinity as he seemed more into Monica Belluci
during his scene with Persephone but for the most part, Keanu pulls off
a believable Neo in a way superior to the standard action hero.
Lawrence Fishburne has a few odd moments but for the most part does a
great job in his newfound role of playing Neo's John the Baptist. Only
when he sounded very hoarse giving his speech in Zion is he more comical
than forboding. In their time on the screen the Merovingian,
Persephone and the ghost twins steal the show. They provide a very
intriguing aspect of the machine world that runs counter to the stoic
emotionless Agents. Just how connected to the Core system are the
Merovingian and Persephone? Have to wait for Revolutions in November to
solidly answer that question.
Some say the effects were overdone while others thought there should
have been more FX action sequences. This contradiction is probably
exactly what the W. brothers intended. The use of the digital effects
combined with the smoothness of the actor's wire work leads to some of
the most realistic looking 'superheroism' ever shown on screen. No
Hong Kong martial arts flick (not even Crouching Tiger, Hidden Dragon)
makes the wires seem as invisible as in Reloaded. The other
digitalized effects were seemlessly woven into the story in a way that
even Lord of the Rings and Attack of the Clones were unable to match.
Reloaded has set the bar for special effects work with both its smooth
fight scenes and its almost invisible but provoking backgrounds. While
the choreographers might have gotten a little carried away (one Agent
Smith strikes several others bowling ball style), overall that fight
showcases a combination of Hong Kong martial arts and American action
heroism in a very entertaining manner
While lacking in the obvious "classic" scenes of the first Matrix and
missing that anticipation of having no idea where the movie is going,
Reloaded has proven a powerful sequel and great addition to the Matrix
storyline. Yes, the movie asks more questions than it answers: Is the
Oracle really helping the humans or just manipulating them on another
Who is Persephone and what exactly are her motivations? Is Zion the
'real world' or just another deeper level of the Matrix? Free Agent
Smith is a 'virus' but what will he be the catalyst for, exactly? These
are just some of the deep questions being asked but not answered in
Reloaded. Many people don't like coming away from a movie with
questions unanswered and that is basis for much of the criticism.
Overall, Reloaded satisfies the craving for visual stimulation in spades
and leaves the audience walking away wondering exactly what the movie,
especially the final scenes are supposed to mean. Reloaded doesn't try
to be the linear, self-contained story of the original and that is why
it is successful.
Reloaded entertains and makes us think about things from a new
perspective and because of that it deserves the status of an excellent
It is what it is and it does what it is meant to do.
Music Feature: "OASIS, TO PRAISE AND TO BURY"
by Dave Blue
Oasis - I come both to praise and to bury them.
Every story starts somewhere and this one would have to start at the
beginning - when I was born. I was born in 1971, and I mention this only
to point out that when I started listening more seriously to music at
around seventeen, music had been nothing but annoying for at least a
decade. Now I allow for divergent tastes and individual preferences, but
the kind of music I liked was rock and roll, loud guitars, heavy drums,
and if possible, good lyrics sung by someone with an interesting voice.
Given this it should come as no surprise that I first fell in love with
some of the "classic rock" bands - Led Zeppelin, the Stones, the
Beatles, the Doors, that sort. And while I was blown away by these
artists and their contemporaries, there was a part of me that remained
jealous of the generation before mine. I read up voraciously on all
these bands and their antics, the highs and lows, the rise to
popularity, and I was envious, going "Now why couldn't I have just one
band that measures up in quality to these old classics, not just in
musical quality but in their lifestyles as well, one that's happening
right now, not twenty years gone and already endeared to a generation."
Little did I know that something was waiting around the bend for me in
'92 or so in San Diego, driving to a local pool hall and hearing a
catchy song on the radio. I called my girlfriend up in Berkeley the next
"You ever heard of a band called Oasis?" I asked. "I heard this really
cool song on the radio yesterday. I think it's called 'Live Forever'. It
starts out like "Maybe....I don't really want to know...." Couldn't
dredge up much more that that. She said she'd heard the song but didn't
know anything about it. Oh well.
Fast forward two or three years. I'm still in San Diego, and this time
the radio's started playing with some frequency this song "Wonderwall"
which sounds a lot like the Beatles and turns out to be from this same
Oasis band. They sounded British, especially in this song.
I've already confessed to a weakness for epic rock songs. Overplayed and
all, "Stairway to Heaven",. "You Can't Always Get What You Want", and
other extended rock masterpieces; I'm a sucker for all that. So when the
radio started playing a new song, a decidedly epic over-six-minutes long
song (Champagne Supernova), I went over the edge. "Okay, I'm buying that
damned Oasis album already."
Played it that afternoon while I was riding the bike at the gym when out
of an unfamiliar mix of songs comes the sond of helicopter blades and
the piercing wail of the title track (What's the Story, Moring Glory?)
and I realized I'd been hearing this song off and on lately as well, had
been loving it and had even gone so far to think "There's another album
I ought to get." There's a feeling you can't duplicate that comes from
buying an album to discover that some previously unknown but much-loved
track is on it. It sounds silly, but it's always given me a charge.
The Oasis album got heavy rotation on my home stereo at the beach. I
still knew nothing at all about the band - except I'd decided they were
definitely British. But the album! One ass-kicking song right after the
next, different speeds and tempoes and styles, but uninterrupted joy for
over forty-five minutes straight. It began with a cool intro, trailed
off with a nice outro, and was easily the best album I'd bought for
years. And I gotta admit, part of me was proud of myself for being like
Christopher Columbus and having "discovered" them myself. By that I'm
saying no one influenced me, I didn't read a review or see a show, no
one TOLD me "Hey Dave, you'd really like this band Oasis". I'd heard 'em
on the radio and gone straight to the store to buy the CD without even
so much as knowing what anyone else's opinion of these guys was.
After a little while, and going right alongside my continued boundless
love for this album, this question began to get at me. Who the hell were
these guys? Did anyone besides me think they were the best rock and roll
band to come along in twenty or thirty years? Hell, did their album sell
at all, or had I just managed to find myself a quiet little
"counterculture" hero. Some research was in order.
Back to the music stores I went, but this time in quest of information.
Read a bunch of reviews and books discussing them - even saw pictures of
what they looked like finally (I was right; Brits). The impression I was
getting from all these sources was that back home in Britain, Oasis DID
in fact explode onto the music scene and cause a sensation and a flurry
of platinum sales over in Britain, while even after their second album,
America remained almost totally ignorant of these geniuses and their
lives and music.
Gotta give props to good old Britain on this one. Don't ask me how in a
global world we Yanks were too stupid to not have caught the vapors from
day one; I can't explain it. But yeah, over there these guys were not
only one of the top-selling, most-attention-getting rock bands on the
scene, they were larger-than-life personalities whose every quote or
sound byte screamed "rock star". They got wasted, they smashed things
up. They mouthed off to the press and to their rival bands. To me their
whole attitude was well summed up in something songwriter and guitarist
Noel Gallagher said to begin a concert: "Frankly we don't think you
deserve to hear these songs, they're too good for you. But well, we're
here, and so are you, so we might as well play them. And if you like
them, then that's exactly the way it should be, and if you don't, well,
that just goes to prove what I was saying."
My timing in discovering and immersing myself in all things Oasis was
pretty damned good. Within a couple of months they were going to release
a third album, tentatively called "Be Here Now" and embark on a world
tour which I was praying would include a stop in L.A. I bought the
single a month or so in advance even though I knew I'd be buying the
album because new Oasis tracks just a purchase away - I couldn't live
with myself if I didn't. The single "D'ya know what I mean?" was damn
good, long and charging, with a sing-along chorus that gets under your
skin and clings. I had high hopes for Be Here Now.
My good friend Buzz has probably done a better job trashing Be Here Now
than I could do attempting to rebut all of his points and instead claim
it was a work of mastery. Let me just concede this point here. Be Here
Now would have been a "double album" had it been released back in the
day - our CD technology was able to cram 78 minutes of music onto one
disc so it didn't shout "double album!" at you. But when I look back at
the great rock double albums of all time - the White Album, Exile on
Main St., Physical Graffitti, The Wall, and many others, it seems to me
that they're all FLAWED masterpieces. They all suffer from
double-album-itis, which manifests itself in the form of thoughts like
"Boy if they'd just left out tracks X, Y, and Z, tightened up the
beginning and the end, and kept it to a 45-minute single album, it would
have KICKED ASS!"
And that's a justifiable criticism. Just remember that what that leaves
us in is a world with no double albums at all, and I'll take mine, flaws
and all, weak tracks and weird tracks, the way they are without
complaint. Be Here Now was no different than any of these others - if
they'd cut right from track one (the pre-release single) to track seven
or nine, kept it under forty minutes, it would have been untouchable.
However, instead we got an Oasis album that shows them not just at their
best but at their most over-extended and least meaningful. Rumor has it
a lot of drugs went into the making of this album - they probably could
have done better with a different mix.
I did get to go see them in concert on that tour and they were
brilliant - didn't play long enough, but who does anymore?
By their next album, "Standing on the Shoulder of Giants" years had
passed and the same thing that happens to a lot of great rock stars had
happened to Oasis. They stopped having trouble with club owners and
substance abuse, and started having trouble with wives, kids, fame, and
fortune. And I for one have never seen a rock band able to get past this
period without starting to suck. None of us care about how much it sucks
that you can't get any privacy, Noel, go "take a walk with your fame
down memory lane" and shut the fuck up. Give us rock and fucking roll!
I guess the difference with this album was that for once I had an Oasis
album where selected tracks were great, but were separated by what
sounded to me like a lot of filler. Not too long after this release came
their admitted double album, a sprawling two-CD live album, "Familiar to
Millions". I bought it but it wasn't much to write home about. Most of
the tracks were better in the studio and the song selection could have
been a lot better.
Since then, Oasis has moved into the arena most recently and prominently
occupied by Guns N' Roses, you know, the stage that goes "Oh yeah, uh,
the next album, well, we're getting ready to go into the studio sometime
soon...." and usually marks the end of a career.
So with all I've had here praising Oasis - and I do, whether they're
washed up now or have more life yet in them, I got my wish - I got to
(sort of) experience a band I loved playing rock and roll during my
active listening time of my life. They may not be Zeppelin but I felt
fulfiilled. Now I come to bury them, as I said in the title. Guys,
you're through. You were a couple albums ago, you just didn't figure it
out then. So now, go on, retire, knowing that your Hall of Fame status
is well assured and that dribbling out any more half-assed albums will
only dilute your legacy. Let us fans remember you for Definitely Maybe
and Morning Glory, and even the haters will have to concede, yeah,
Oasis, they were something, all right.
Music Feature: "OASIS - JUST TO BURY"
Oasis - they're rubbish. Take it from me, I've watched them from the
very beginning; I remember the very first time they featured in NME, a
bunch of then unknown scally piss-artists, and I've seen them develop
into the not quite globe-straddling superstars they now are... or at
least, have been.
They started promisingly enough, I have to admit. 'Supersonic', the song
that quickly catapulted them from the new band features to the front
pages of major British music publications, was an impressive slab of
grimy, low-slung, primeval rock'n'roll, fully deserving of all the hype
surrounding the band. And it marked the beginning of what, it seemed at
the time, would be an exciting new age for British pop: without warning,
these two guitar bands (the band in question and their soon-to-be
rivals, indie chart veterans Blur with their single 'Girls & Boys') were
seriously rocking the top end of the charts. Which - it's easy to
forget - was not exactly a common occurrence in those days. The old
guard was losing its grip on the music industry - at the BBC, executives
and presenters alike were being usurped by hip, young things with their
fingers on the pulse. Within the space of just a few years, the NME -
since the '80s, very much a specialist publication prowling the fringes
of popular music - would become widely accepted as the industry's most
sure-fire trend-spotter. All down to those two bands. However little
regard I have for Oasis, I have to give them credit - they helped change
the face of British pop.
But 'Supersonic' was followed by a pathetic run of singles (the annoying
'Shakermaker', the mediocre 'Live Forever'), exposing Oasis for the
dullards from Burnage they really were. Evidently, that startling chart
debut was a spectacular fluke. Don't get me wrong, they've had their
moments along the way, but Jesus, so has Bryan Adams.
"Yeah, Buzz," I hear you say, "but be fair - as you yourself said: Oasis
helped change the face of British pop."
That's right, they did... for the WORSE. See, it may well have all been
very exciting to witness this new, bankable version of indie taking the
pop charts by storm, but the dream was soon to turn sour. Extremely
sour. Britpop, as it became known, is something most of my generation
now looks back on with shame. Imagine you get drunk one night and make a
complete tit of yourself, then for the next several weeks, for sheer
embarrassment, you can't face anyone who saw you that evening. Now
imagine if that night lasted about three years. Oh, yes, Britpop (a
misnomer, as it was peculiarly English) represented and celebrated the
very worst of the English character: the loutishness; the nostalgia; the
sheepskin coats; the steadfast belief that one was a Michael Caine-esque
likely lad, swanning around '60s London chatting up 'birds'. It was
around this time that Loaded, a magazine set up to document the 'New
Lad' culture that grew out of Britpop, first hit the shelves and set the
caus e of feminism back about 25 years. Union Jacks were flying
everywhere as the whole country was overcome by a particularly
repellent, smug strain of patriotism. When Tony Blair - the man who's
been carefully dismantling both public services and the Labour Party for
all these years - came to power, he did so on the back of his feelgood
cry of 'Cool Britannia'.
At last! We were cultural leaders once again. Never mind the fact that
no-one outside of England actually gave a toss (except maybe Japan). We
had built Jerusalem! In England's green and pleasant land! The landscape
was plastered with iconic British imagery from the '60s. Everywhere,
teenage boys dressed like and listened to the same music as their dads.
See, the generation gap is a vital factor in the healthy cultural
development of any wave of young adults - the wider, the better. But
here, all of a sudden, it was gone! Woosh! Fuckin' legged it! Don't even
get me started on the haircuts.
And all the time, soundtracking the whole sorry affair, Oasis. Music for
the emotionally stunted to get drunk and cry to. Really, you'd have
thought 'Champagne Supernova' was a pan-generational anthem to rival
'Blowin' in the Wind', 'Anarchy in the UK' or 'Smells Like Teen Spirit',
rather than an inoffensive little ditty with shit, meaningless lyrics.
Ah, yes - the lyrics. Let us not mince words, dear readers, for Noel
Gallagher is, without doubt, one of the worst lyricists in pop history.
He's a dedicated patron of the school of songwriting that uses
psychobabble basically to disguise a complete lack of talent. Now,
there's a right and a wrong way to do psychobabble. Good examples of
this are Beck, the Pixies, the Beastie Boys and The Fall; bad examples,
contrary to popular belief, include Syd Barrett, Jim Morrison and John
Lennon. Make no mistake, Noel G is lurking in the murky parts of this
end of the scale. It takes a special kind of idiot to come up with: "You
gotta roll with it/You gotta take your time/You gotta say what you
say/Don't let anybody get in your way/This is all too much for me to
Still, Oasis - the band, the men and the music - have long been noted
for their not inconsiderable measures of attitude, and deservedly so. As
Dave will no doubt have pointed out with some glee, Liam Gallagher
especially is a rock star in the classic mould. His glowering,
monobrowed face has adorned many a tabloid front page here in Britain,
accompanied by story after story of yet more insane drunken
rants/antics/fights with cyclists/Mafiosa. For this, he truly is a
national treasure. And at various points during their early years,
Oasis' singles occasionally showed flashes of the same kind of swagger
and bollock they so capably demonstrated with 'Supersonic'.
But then came 'Be Here Now'. Recorded with none of the original line-up,
bar the Gallaghers, it was an album of epic proportions (for "epic",
read, "dull"). Its leading single, 'D'You Know What I Mean?', was a
great, craggy rock'n'roll monolith, and it had a video to match: Oasis!
Performing! Against a post-apocalyptic backdrop! It was a masterpiece of
bombast. The rest of the album would follow in the same vein. It was a
coke album, basically, and quite frankly, their 'cleaned-up' album
'Standing on the Shoulder of Giants' was even worse.
A bigger shame is that this legendary attitude has never found its way
into their live performances. Oh, they somehow managed to convince the
NME that they were "the most exciting live act in Britain", as the paper
so often proclaimed - the fools! - but beyond Liam flicking the
occasional two-fingered salute, parading up and down the stage from time
to time and storming off in a hissy fit every now and again, their shows
are depressingly free of any of the antics normally associated with
genuine, abrasive cock'n'roll. Standing stock-still, heads down, they
attack their music with a workman-like earnest and a complete lack of
enthusiasm. I, for one, have never seen a band look so bereft of passion
onstage, and having grown up through a number of different local music
scenes with all the one-gig wonders they had to offer, I've seen some
pretty half-arsed performances.
But whatever their reasons - reasons evidently beyond this writer's
comprehension - people bought it. In a big way. Such is the hype that
has always surrounded this band, particularly in the early days. Jesus,
upon their arrival, they frequently drew comparisons to the Sex Pistols,
a band who shook up the UK - and in time, the world - and irrevocably
altered the musical map to such a degree that the waves they created is
still being felt today. Oasis are a Beatles cover band who, by rights,
should have plugged their trade fruitlessly in their local pubs every
weekend to audiences of drunk middle-aged men before giving up a couple
of years later and resigning themselves to a life delivering bakery
But one night they had the good fortune to be visited upon by one Alan
McGee, head of Creation records, and the man who brought Primal Scream,
My Bloody Valentine and The Jesus and Mary Chain to the wider public.
Unfortunately, he seemed to be posessed by the same evil spirits that
led him to sign Teenage Fanclub. Legend has it that he offered them a
contract on the spot. Legend also has it that Liam threatened to burn
down the venue if he didn't. Maybe that had more to do with it.
So not only were Oasis responsible for sucking the soul out of British
music and popular culture, they were also responsible for the subsequent
complacency of Alan McGee, a man with a previously glowing record (well,
most of it). Convinced of his own unfailing genius, McGee's A&R policy
has since become ever more erratic. Over nearly ten years in the public
eye, the only truly remarkable thing about the band has been the
unprecedented trail of destruction they have left in their wake. Quite
simply, they ballsed up British culture for a long time, and for that
may they never be forgiven.
A storm in a teacup, the greatest band that never should have been...
Oasis - they're rubbish. Come on, now, admit it. As Noel said: "John
Lennon's dead, get over it." I couldn't have put it better myself.
THE BACK END
Thanks to all of you for reading through our debut issue, and here comes
the point where we discuss "upcoming features" to look forward to in the
A preface this time - Media Jam is an interactive publication. We need
your feedback, suggestions, criticism, praise, and most especially, your
ideas on what you'd like to see in upcoming issues. I've printed it
before but the best way to give direct feedback is to send email to
In the next issue for sure, we have the first installment of what should
become a regular feature - "Scapegoat's Corner", a feature authored by
our good friend DJ Reverend Scapegoat who DJs a live club gig every week
at his home in Scotland. He's gonna come in and talk about the
club-level music scene, his own club, and the songs he plays.
That said, any of you readers who do something similar - host or DJ a
live street-level club, we would love to have a similar piece from you.
We want to maintain a balance between the more mainstream music you hear
on the radio and the music that gets played in the clubs in the real
Coming up in the next issue will be a book review - we reviewed movies
and music this time, next issue will feature a review of bestseller Dan
Brown's "The Da Vinci Code" and if all goes well, I'm going to chase him
for an interview.
Speaking of "chasing", we've got two big names on the agenda we hope to
bring you interviews with in the next issue. We've been calling issue #2
the "Chuck issue" because two people we're chasing interviews from are
Fight Club author Chuck Palahniuk and hip-hop and black culture icon
Chuck D of Public Enemy.
Expect also a movie review of "Terminator 3" which I'll (Dave) be
Besides those leads, we're hoping to be able to feature a lot of content
sent in by readers with something to say. A lot of you keep blogs, and a
lot of blog entries would make good articles for this publication so
long as they're on-topic.
A final word about "topic" - as we've said and now shown, our focus is
"media" - the media itself as a concept and influence as well as
specific articles and reviews of examples of media itself - commentary
on books, music, movies, et cetera. We're hungry for more submissions,
so have a look through your backlogs and see if there's anything there
we might be able to use.
One note - Media Jam is specifically a-political. Please save your
political takes for some other publication, because that's not an area
we want to get into here.
MEDIA JAM STAFF AND CONTACT INFO:
Editor in Chief (Pacific) - Dave Blue - davezero@...
Editor in Chief (Atlantic) - Buzz - contactbuzz@...
Contributing writers in this issue:
Steven Adams (Australia) - sadams123@...
Jim Kelly (California) - roger__dat@...
Additional writing on the web by the editors can be found at
A larger base of articles and features is located at
Media Jam Information Page: http://tetrica.com/dz/jam.html
708 Novelda Rd.
Alhambra, CA 91801
Thanks again to all those who helped contribute, and even to those who
read the whole thing. You guys are our reason for existing, so help
spread the word and please, send in any comments you have - not just
about this issue's contents but also suggestions on what you'd like to
see us cover next time.
Media Jam issue #1 - July 1st, 2003
Hello out there, and it's another week busting at the seams here
with the SPA. First, we have the Clueless at the Convention booklet
ready for ordering! Coinciding with it's release at the San Diego
Comic Con (And if you are out there, stop in the Rummblestrips
Booth – Joanne Mutch's table - and pick up your copy signed by it's
editor, Sandi Layne!! And of course, check out the Rummblestrips
comic while you're at it!), we have put up a page online for the
booklet, and a bit of information about the title's future…check it
out HERE: http://www.dimestoreproductions.com/SPA/Clueless.asp
Besides that, the final push is on to get Obscurity Unlimited #23
out. I know, I know, it's running way late at this point. But you
can rest assured that this issue is going to help turn things
around, and we've got a number of tweaks and developments in line
now. I'm doing a bit of debating about the direction I'm going to go
with a few things concerning OU, but you're going to have to read
the issue to find out what I'm talking about. If you are not a
subscriber to OU, now is a GREAT time to show your support for the
work we are trying to do, and order at least a sample copy. Here's
the URL to do that:
Also, if you are unaware, Steve Noppenberger (Noppie) has started
up, with the SPA, a special free giveaway catalog aimed at
conventions. Here's his contact info: Steven M. Noppenberger/ 695
Windsor Drive, Westminster, Maryland 21158-4200
new email s.noppenberger@... or vze39k3qa@... There
are still a number of spots to fill in the proposed 32 page, comic
book sized catalog, and pages are estimated at this time that we
will be charging $37 each page.
Remember, the SPA is free to join and free to use, but we do hope
that you like the work that we do enough to show a bit of support
now and then. Participation in group projects is a great start.
Also, tell everyone you can about the efforts of the SPA to increase
the readerships of all small press/independent publications. Here's
what you can do RIGHT NOW: If you are not already a member of the
SPA Forum, Click Here:
http://www.dimestoreproductions.com/SPA/forum.asp and join up! It
takes about 5 minutes, and it's Free!
Hi there zinesters,
This is Melonie in Hamilton, Ontario, Canada. I'm trying to put
together a reference/catelogue/directory of zine stores & distros in
North America & the world. Sounds ambitious, right? Well, I already
have a list of over 160 resources [covering Canada, the US, the UK,
Europe, Australia, New Zealand and Asia], but it's constantly
expanding! I'm seeking submissions, information, anything you can
offer to make my directory more thorough and accurate. If you run a
distro, please feel free to email me with the distro name, contact
information and even a small explanation of what your distro is about
and what kinds of zines/stuff you sell [please keep this "blurb"
separate from location information]. If you know of a store in your
town or city that sells small press fare, same deal: name, contact
info and hopefully a description of the store. Even if I already
have the name of the store or distro, I may have incorrect, outdated
or incomplete information, so whatever you send me is bound to be of
I initially had the idea of creating a "distro directory" recently as
I'm also potentially creating a local zine library at McMaster
University. If the library goes ahead as planned, the distro
resource will be a part of it—that means that when someone reads a
zine they like, they can immediately find a place to buy it by
checking out the distros listed [good news for you distro owners!].
I'd also like to carry flyers for various distros, for the same
reason [getting the word out; free publicity!].
If this interests you or you have anything to share or contribute,
please write to me & we'll take it from there. Cheers!
Just address an email to email@example.com
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