Brief Descriptive Passage – Eric Basso, “Equus Caballus”

The Isolated Quirk, The Uncharted Island’s Blind Lighthouse, The Disembodied Excerpt With Telepathic Legs…

…that transmit messages to invisible arms that pulls us up out from under ground. As readers, especially those of fiction, you occasionally run across a brief description that galvanizes your imagination and further wakes you up to the genius of that particular artist. The passage which immediately follows this introduction has that effect on me. It’s my pleasure to savor it time and again.

The exquisite short story “Equus Caballus (here included in the Asylum Arts/Leaping Dog Press edition of The Beak Doctor) is typical of Basso’s resplendent prose, full of spellbindingly meticulous details informed by le mot juste (or just choosing the right fucking word). There’s really no reason to waste your time supplying background for the story because I’m isolating this passage for its strange beauty and economy. However, in order to just slightly satisfy (or tease) you compulsives out there, here’a a wisp of background.

Asylum Arts/Leaping Dog Press Basso

The Beak Doctor: Short Fiction 1972-1976

From Goodreads:

“Horses, portraits, underground machinery coalesce into a subterranean mystery of strange import.”

“Equus Caballus first appeared in the West Coast review Asylum in 1975, this is its first appearance in the UK.”

The Passage

Trapped, Losing Sense

From Equus Caballus, Eric Basso, 1975

Living in relative isolation as I do, I frequently think about the function of this webzine. Obviously, any media is an attempt to communicate. From my personal point of view, this `zine, along with other tiny, independent, passionate and/or knowledgeable blogs and websites (speaking here only of electronic media) provide me with a remote network of [unseen] breathing pores, a complex means for me to remain engaged with the world.

In “Equus Caballus,” Basso creates a world where the characters maneuver subterranean territory to dig up a central mystery. Not that it’s a 1:1 analogy, but this and other rags (is that term still valid?) kind of do the same graveyard shift labor. We seek out something vital and anathema to the dominant prefab paradigm, whatever that might be, finding all sorts of humanity buried alive and help reorient them…here.

DECAYKE is a last ditch effort to remain engaged with a world on a maddening downward spiral…or so it would seem. I aim to continue to flash light, however dim, on artists and thinkers wh0 force light through to the puzzlingly vapid controlling class. You know, the one that guides us on our package deal to Hell, and thanks to Groupon, we can enjoy half off crossing Styx. Or that’s what they told me. But listen up: too much is almost always never enough, especially when you need ample ambulatory encryption on which to rely because Hell is a hellhole and a real bitch to navigate. You never know when you’re gonna need that leg up.

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Clair Obscur – Santa Maria b/w Toundra

Delighting this Omday morning considering the parallels between [The] Screamers and early Clair Obscur output. This now legendary (to niche nerds and hoarders) colddarkwave duo, an apropos ugly cousin of no-wave, here psychotically scrapes the rust off of punk’s irony on this 7″, stuffs it into its void-like maw, throwing up the snaggy bolus in contrast to Mr. Clean’s Generic Radio Output circa ’83, creating a gaseous cloud that still rains down acid on us through a hole of disgrace in our burnt orange sky. Enjoy Santa Maria.

Early Clair Obscur Vanity Pressing

Santa Maria b/w Toundra

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Is It Me Or The Dog?


Is it me or the dog?

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Yes it is.



She’s got a TV EYE on ME

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Mr. Ralf Wehowsky aka Charles Rogalli

RLW (Ralf Wehosky) continues to distinguish himself from the pack with his latest record (I think on Dirter, but don’t kill me if I got that wrong). Here’s the SoundCloud preview, guaranteed to induce thrills…or at least a [free] thrill. There’s so much hyperbole and superlative usage out there when it comes to describing music that I’ve come to appreciate the power of understatement, so please do enjoy this ear-braining, pineal gland pearlescent ooze of globule-drip inducing slice of concrete music. He really is – and has been – one of the best at his trade for decades.

There are usually pics paired with these SoundCloud embeds, but I can’t see them. Must be something I have added on to my browser, but if you would like to see the artwork then simply click on the top of the wave pattern, or thereabouts, and you’ll be guided by RLW’s voices to the appropriate destination. Or you can see it below.

Ralf Wehowsky on Dirter Records

RLW – Fall Seliger Geister Cover Art

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Gigantic Roverine — Henry Darger

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Gigantic Roverine — Henry Darger

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Quicky Record Reviews

  • Blood StereoYour Snakelike King – Academic double-blind studies of homemade contact mics surgically attached to both the internal and external grape parts. Textures galore! Typical anti-riff-pro-ruffian wasteduct rush from BS, here with warped melodies and hook after hook after hook, some you could even call pretty. Pan records couldn’t resist pressing yet another Constance/Nyoukis recording. It’s not drone, but it’s a lot closer to it than was Prick Decay or Ready For The World. Listen to it when you drop whatever they’re calling LSD these days. Man, do I miss when that guy was making all that high-grade Venus syrup in that abandoned missile silo.
  • Helm – Cotton-maw sandstorm drones that may be relevant to this earth in the coming climate change apocalypse. Great sounds if you’re stuck inside on an icy day, like today in Georgia when the heat stopped and the humidity stuck to the drooping power lines. You can look out your window and dream of repetitive drift patterns. Kind of like that Head of David LP cover art for Dustbowl, only the sound here matches the picture there. Ironically, the album is called Impossible Symmetry. Seems quite possible to me, but then I talked to an ashtray for almost half a day once. Pfft…those artists and their hyperbole.
  • John Wiese – Love songs for dissipating smoke rings, exacerbated by the lack of smokers out there. Smoke rings are so lonely. Their cries are characterized by high-pitched electronic whines, and they only get sadder because, when the odds so stacked against them somehow turn in their favor and they find themselves in a room featuring a low-pitched electronic hum with one another, inevitably they disappear into a wall of alternating silence and bad wiring (fire hazard). Hence the yellowing color of sick they leave behind on your popcorn ceiling. That’s exactly what that color is. It’s lost love. The album on Pan is called Seven of Wands.
  • Nurse With Wound/Graham Bowers – Semi-highly-quasi-hyper-orchestrations of boredom, with loony pluvial chorus girl voices in full Doppler allure, lascivious love lasers set to stun. I think these guys are pulling my leg because they call the record Parade, and parades are almost always never nearly boring. What’s her name from Dixie Chicks cameos on fiddle and afterbirth, which she drags behind her on a train made of chiffon. Yes, the horns are laughing at you. Dirter Records wanted it that way, paranoiac.
  • Ilios – Atmospheric recording for people who get wet in casinos. Men get wet, too. It’s that bit of goo that comes out when excitement can’t…quite…be…contained. Can’t stop craps? Well Kenrimono (Pan) may be the record for you. Or it could be a record you keep in a kitchen cabinet as reminder not to gamble, just like that guy from The Days of Wine and Roses. Except his reminder was a bottle of liquor, which they just give away at casinos. How could you lose? This is actually highly amplified sounds of the process of various stages of necrotic spider bites, manipulated and composed with precision.
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Christophe Agou

Under A Cloud

Under A Cloud

Christophe Agou. I was so impressed with these photos that I reblogged these from “Masters of Photography.” You’ll find the link for that blog in the right margin of my page. My gratitude to him for turning me on to Agou’s work.

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Noise-Arch – Cassette-Era Download Archive

Some of you many already know about this but I just found out. Takes a little time for news to get to the swamp. The news is famous for steering clear of The Ancient Miasma. On a personal note, it’s a huge bonus for me because I prefer even the mp3 over the trendy cassette revival that’s going on these days. I know a lot of you weren’t around during the heyday of cassette trading, and it was cool, but the format shouldn’t be an object of worship. If you knew how many copies of Piece of Mind and Physical by Olivia Newton-John I had to buy because the tape got destroyed, then you know what I’m talking about. Then again, my copy of the Bad Brains cassette lasted for decades. What can I say? I’m usually enamored of inanimate objects. Either that or I pity them. Anyway, the following link will take you to where you need to go to cleanse yourself of that fetish you have.

“this website is a collection of underground / independantly [sic] released cassette tapes from the days when the audio cassette was the standard method of music sharing, generally the mid eighties through early nineties.

material represented includes tape experimentation, industrial, avant-garde, indy, rock, diy, subvertainment and auto-hypnotic materials… most of what you are about to hear is rather difficult to file under any one category, and thus has not been.”

My commentary on the cassette as a format took the form of a recording project called The Splice Girls. All of those tapes are long gone, and you know why? They were, like a Tinguely sculpture, designed to self-destruct. Whether I treated the tapes chemically to achieve the literal audio effect of disintegration, tied them to bicycle wheel spokes and drug [sic] them around the streets, excessively spliced them or symbolically marinated them in psilocybin broth, the darned things just never seemed to stand the test of time. I actually managed to keep one recording called The Kindness of Ezekiel, which I uploaded to Soundcloud, but even it seems to have disappeared. The tape was housed in the glass of a Baptist church window I threw a rock through one night. Inspiration! It started out alluring enough for the static noise crowd, full of mechanical loops and “unidentifiable sounds,” but it was really just a document of an insane Southern preacher cut up and reconstructed for the general good. But I ramble. As a salute to what truly was a great time in networking artists, I’ll post If, Bwana.

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