music / Columns

Music’s 3Rs 11.26.12: Turkey Begets Sanity

November 26, 2012 | Posted by Sean Comer

Welcome, Babies. Well, I see I’m not the only one off of whom triptophan took a little edge: the world of music was stunningly sane this week. So without further ado, let’s inflate the floaties, hold our noses just in case, and dive straight in. I’m Sean, you’re not, and these are The Rs….

Michael Hutchence Biopic Announced On Heels Of INXS Farewell:
It was a bittersweet month to mourn the imminent end of INXS.

The new-wave pop icons announced earlier this month that they’ve decided to disband after 32 years together. This past week, Rolling Stone confirmed writer Bobby Gallinsky’s development of a biopic exploring late lead singer Michael Hutchence’s private life. Hutchence was found dead at age 37 in 1997, his passing officially ruled a suicide stemming from drug & alcohol influence.

The biopic should be a deserving labor of love from Gallinsky, who adapted the project from Hutchence’s mother’s remembrance Just A Man: The Real Michael Hutchence. The adaptation has reportedly been on Gallinsky’s radar for more than a decade. Titled Two Worlds Colliding, he’s said to be focusing more upon Hutchence as a private man and the things that tormented him away from the spotlight.

Well, that will pain more than a few who would be more enraptured by a two-hour portrait strictly of Hutchence’s documented fascination with auto-erotic asphyxiation and war with drugs, or the more sordid years after his death spent questioning the exact nature of his demise. But really, it would be a relief to see Gallinsky touch upon those shades of his private life appropriately while delving into some hitherto untouched material.

A man is more than his actions, more even than his art. Hutchence’s sat atop a rock god’s pedestal, but he sat atop it still just a man. With the book of INXS seemingly set to close after the band’s soldiering forth without its iconic front man, it’s perhaps time to close it with a completed vision of the Hutchence few knew.
Corey Taylor Calls Dubstep “Tired Bullshit”:
Specificity is key here, Babies: no way in any known or uncharted Blue Hell am I expressing enthusiasm for dance music by a member of Slipknot. I’ve never liked Slipknot. I never will like Slipknot, or most of its members or offshoots, though the band seems to be comprised of half the state of Iowa.

But for when line alone, lead singer Corey Taylor’s recent interview with Revolver had me nodding in emphatic agreement.

“I want to do… something funny and sarcastic, and I’m not talking ’70s dance (and) not that tired fucking dubstep bullshit. I want to make it something that’s got that old school feel to it but with a modern twinge. Just get ridiculous with it. I’ve already got a name for myself – the Boogie Knight. And I want to call the first album ‘The Boogie Knight Rises’.”

Ah, “tired fucking dubstep bullshit.” I only wish I could’ve said it better.

Last Monday, I named a few things music gave the world in 2012 for which I’m deeply thankful. If I had to list five things that I hope 2013 erases, the rise of dubstep would probably crack the top three. I love electronic music in its many forms. I’ve long seen it as being just as challenging to create in its most listenable forms – i.e., the textures, soundscapes and pure sonic alchemy of acts like Massive Attack, Zero 7 and Patrick O’Hearn, to name a few favorites – but nu metal aside, I can’t recall a style less enjoyable to hear than dubstep. I have never, and will never, sink so low as to call the sound of a manual transmission being stripped of its gears by a 16-year-old drooling idiot with a learner’s permit “music.”

That said, I’ll give Taylor this: if he’s looking to approach it with a sense of humor, it could be interesting. He seems to be approaching this as making dance music for the people typically don’t dig everything that sounds typical dance music. That can be refreshing. Additionally, it’s not like Rob Zombie and Maynard James Keenan, to name a couple rockers, haven’t already turned electronica on its head before.

To be a bit more succinct: I’m skeptical that I’d enjoy it; hell, to be completely honest, it gives me chills to admit that I might like something that came indirectly from Slipknot. However, I’m just intrigued enough to have a little hope that he proves me wrong and listen with the benefit of a doubt.
Merry Christmas from Slayer:
The official Slayer online store sells Christmas sweaters.

Does a “Right” item ever require so little explanation as this does?

OK, fine. I’m not exactly feeling lazy right now. The red-and-black jumpers are knitted in black, red and white with alternating patterns of the band’s name in black, an inverted pentagram in alternating black and white (white and red on the sleeves), and black-and-white skulls. This holly-jolly festive outerwear sells for $79.99 currently, but is still out-of-stock as of Nov. 25 with more on backorder.

As Joseph Lee pointed out earlier this week, the metal gods truly go out on a limb with their merchandising. I should really make an effort at getting my hands on a bottle of their “Reign in Blood” California Cabernet Sauvignon released this past April. Pity it’s only available in Sweden these days, but I wonder if it might be worth a Google search to see who might ship stateside.
Lenny Kravitz Lands Marvin Gaye Role In Biopic:
Hmm. By a narrow margin, I favor this.

According to The (U.K.) Evening Standard earlier this week, Kravitz is set to star in London: The Modern Babylon documentarian director Julien Temple’s production chronicling Gaye’s later years in debt struggling with alcohol abuse in London from 1981, up to his death. Gaye’s second wife, Janis Gaye, allegedly hasn’t exactly thrown her full support behind the project. For reasons unspecified by the Standard, she’s said to be “very skeptical” about the project as a whole.

Fair enough. But Kravitz could be both its bright spot and its hope.

Granted, it would be the “Are You Gonna Go My Way?” rocker’s first lead role after looking comfortable this past spring in his supporting The Hunger Games performance. Taking on such a beloved figure as Gaye in a portrayal of some vulnerable, ugly years of the Motown icon’s life could be a tightrope. Kravitz has never come across in song or in persona as being exactly clueless, though.

Point in fact, I’ve often thought that particularly he and Ben Harper – who famously himself sings a sensitively stirring “Sexual Healing” – bore just a touch of Gaye’s soul and conscience. Funny enough, should the project demand Kravitz perform any classic Gaye tunes, that could be where the bloom falls quickly from the rose; he really does lack Gaye’s precise, smooth tone. Who knows, though? Since this depicts Gaye at a low point in his life, maybe Kravitz sounding a bit “off” singing the late great’s tunes could be a boon in disguise.

‘Nanners One Direction Fans Threaten Taylor Swift:
Folks, if you’re going to behave like vicious little animals, then when extraterrestrials who monitor and research us via the Internet arrive and exterminate you like vicious animals, I’m volunteering to them for clean-up duty.

In yet another argument that the world will ultimately be no better for Twitter’s existence, One Direction fans who probably thought they were being downright high-fuckin’-larious took to Twitter this past week and made it clear they’ll cut a bitch if Taylor Swift doesn’t quit romancing their precious Harry Styles.

The (U.K.) Sun reported this week that a group calling themselves “Directioners” delivered half-ass threats such as “I’ll murder Taylor Swift. She will not date my Harry” and “If u dating my harry, I kill u.”

There is no understating how funny that shit isn’t.

After a simple photo shoot with the band, model Edie Campbell reportedly also ditched the micro-blogging platform after similar trolling.

It’s clear that simple appeals to decency bear little gravitas. So allow me to try a fresh approach. the Internet is forever, you mouth-breathing little piranha. Don’t believe it? Ask the filter-free nitwits who tweeted after the 2012 Grammy Awards that they’d be OK with Chris Brown beating the snot out of them, only for them to end up with their names and profile information slathered all over Reddit. It doesn’t matter that those folk tried to delete the tweets, because screen caps.

See, that’s the thing about the Internet: occasionally, we all agree when something is asinine or deplorable.

Maybe I’d take this a lot less personally if it didn’t hit so close to home for me. Maybe that’s exactly why I’ll never blow off stories like this. However my motivation might be explained, Twitter has gradually turned its users into a pack of cowardly scavengers. Unfortunately, it’s seemingly neck-and-neck between Twitter and Reddit to decide which platform recklessly leaves its users most open to ludicrous degrees of abuse.

……..Well, I’ll be damned.

I’ve got nothing.

Chalk it up to Thanksgiving and the spirit of goodness and gratitude, but there was precious little “Ridiculous” to go around this week.

Therefore, I end this with what I hope will become a bastion of warmth, hope and the joy of humanity this coming holiday season: YOUR MOMENT OF GWAR…

That’s it this week for the Right, Wrong and…GWAR. We’ll be back in seven with another cavalcade of non-stop nunfuckery. Until then, I’m Sean. You’re not. Never dull your colors for someone else’s canvas.

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Sean Comer
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