In Fragmented Frequencies early years he indulged in a fantasy that all the punk rock super heroes were great mates. That Henry Rollins and Jello Biafra would bake cakes together, snort some crack with Gibby Haynes, then go to the pinball arcade with the Ramones and just before bed sacrafice some virgins with Glen Danzig.
Of course it’s teenage fantasy hokem, and this punk rock Brady Bunch fever dream had all but vanished until recently, when it became clear that not only did someone else share this vision, but they took it one step further. Henry & Glen Forever supposes Rollins and Danzig as sensitive caring lovers who live next door to the polite yet devil worshipping Hall & Oates. It’s a 64 page comic book from Igloo Tornado, a collective of artists that dare to delve into the intimate thoughts of the soft loving, hard living duo, the sensitive and vulnerable emo feelings that they share only in their respective diary entries and with each other. It’s not altogether narrative based, with multiple drawing styles, it’s more like a collection of significant movements from their lives that when patched together really provide a unique insight into our ink obsessed musclebound heroes, reveling in their insecurities and self doubt. We see them singing karaoke together, Danzig repeately asks Rollins how his butt looks in pants, and they bicker about toilet paper and who does all the housework. They even have a TV Party. It’s sensational. You can find it at www.microcosmpublishing.com.
Zac Keiller is a local guitarist very active on the experimental music scene. Whilst his releases and collaborations are too numerous to mention here, the one constant is his fascination with discovering new and unique sonic textures from one of the most overused and unimaginatively approached instruments in western music: The guitar. The majority of his previous releases saw him working with ambient textures or electroacoustic improvisation (which you can now download for free at www.zackeiller.polydistortion.net). His new album Start Burning (Iceage Productions) sees him limiting the use of pedals, attempting to find a kind of transcendence through stark purity of tone. Whilst there’s some gorgeous ambience with drones and fragmented runs of notes, there’s also a raw kind of riff based instrumental rock with drums, which emphasises that these days it takes different strokes to move Zac’s world.
The Sentimental Engine Slayer is the debut feature film release for Mars Volta guitarist Omar Rodriguez Lopez. Not only did he write, direct and produce the film he also stars as the confused 20 something struggling with some serious mental health issues in his transition to adulthood. He also contributes the really whacked out score which is pretty consistent with his previous solo offerings. His sounds are a mixture of guitar noise and gentle ambience and it provides the film with a confused, hazy, perhaps drug addled feel, perfect for the disjointed narrative and surreal suburbia Lopez is going for. Populated by friends and family, it’s super low budget, in Spanish (sometimes without subtitles) and English, reflecting the multicultural multilingual reality of modern day America like few films have. This very bold and unique debut feature is playing at ACMI from the 10th to the 13th of June.
And don’t be afraid of the annual Liquid Architecture Festival, a celebration of sound art and progressive experimental music. It’s on from the 1st to the 17th of July and features exhibitions, artists talks and concerts. As usual there’s a few overseas acts, including musique concrete composer Lionel Marchetti (Fra) and noise dude KK Null (Jap) who was here about 10 years ago playing a 15 minute set on a noisy acoustic guitar before saying, “sorry it’s out of tune,” and proceeding to play it again sounding exactly the same. Hilarious. Check www.liquidarchitecture.org.au.