Thursday, June 22, 2006

Good news.

Regular readers and friends will recall that there was an essay that I got a twelve-month extension for, yet never handed in, on the topic of "The development and extension of Freud's ideas in Jacques Lacan, "The Mirror Stage as Formative of the Function of the I"". It was the cause of much angst (very much). Foolishly, I re-enrolled in the subject this semester. I have nearly pulled out all my hair while working on it.


It's done.

I sent it off to my lecturer this morning. That was the last piece of assessment for my Arts degree. There was dancing and whooping. I was tempted to pull my shirt over my head and run around the house with my arms in the air (too much soccer). In any case, regardless of what any Althusserian may tell you , I am now free.

Well, apart from these two small essays that I need to write for my German diploma. But after that death of the Freudian-Lacanian mammoth, these ones are a certainty.

Monday, June 19, 2006

I've just made a new mix cd, which I'm quite happy with. It was partially inspired by seeing Annie the other week, and the rest came from my researching an essay on Freud and Lacan (yes, that essay, faithful readers. I'm making progress, don't you worry about me.) I've also been thinking about masochism, as my next essay is on Oedipalisation in Kafka's The Metamorphosis.

Annie has this throwaway track called "Wedding". I always thought of it as being a filler track on the end of an album. Anyway, when she performed it the other week, she introduced it as being about "love and marriage and commitment and everything that is evil like that". While singing, she made gunshot actions with her pointed fingers in time with the "I do I do I do"s in the song. It made an otherwise cutesy song most sinister. Particularly seeing as though Annie's music is bittersweet on her albums, whereas the live performance transformed it into something rather trippy and disconcerting.

So, with this and the death drive in mind - all those aggressive instincts bound up with love, and set loose when we have to give our libidinal objects up - I present to you:

Love and Aggression

a DJ Moley Mole production

1. Annie - Wedding

2. Portishead - All Mine

3. Siouxsie and the Banshees - Trust In Me

4. Burial - Distant Lights

5. Depeche Mode - It's No Good

6. Iggy Pop - China Girl

7. Siouxsie and the Banshees - Melt!

8. The Velvet Underground - Venus in Furs

9. Britney Spears - I'm A Slave 4 U

10. Garbage - #1 Crush

11. The Shangri-Las - I Can Never Go Home Anymore

12. Japan - Gentlemen Take Polaroids

13. Luomo - What Good

14. Morissey - The More You Ignore Me The Closer I Get

15. Siouxsie and the Banshees - Obsession

16. The Police - Every Breath You Take

17. Air - How Does It Make You Feel?


I am particularly pleased with how literally one has to take Britney's profession of her slavery when she is placed next to "Venus in Furs". Likewise, "Obsession" makes "Every Breath You Take" just that little bit more joyfully creepy. And I do enjoy the conversation that's going on between Iggy and Siouxsie - the China girl talks back! And tells him to melt.

And the Shangri-Las? Well, these libidinal structures aren't compatible with the family, you see. Even that profession of love for the mother is rather excessive, don't you think...?

Ah, my studies make me quite perverse.

Friday, June 16, 2006

Oh dear god no...

From The Age:
KEITH Windschuttle, a leading protagonist in the history and culture wars, has been appointed to the ABC board, further beefing up its right-wing credentials.
I think I am going to vomit on my keyboard. What can we do about this? This country is going to shit... Would a petition help, do you think? No, me neither. But there must be something...

Thursday, June 15, 2006

oh dear i have just read my archives, my friends' archives, their links, the age website, picked my head, felt despair go around at least four discreet spirals,, ... this is horrible. mother, take me back in...

(apologies for gross references. i'm writing/procrastinating on an essay on psychoanalysis. the word 'auto-eroticism' flows from my fingers so easily these days. i attempted to psychoanalyse the child that i babysit. i confess.)
I just noticed that there is a barely-noticable, but obviously affecting, super-high harmony on top of the chorus in the Veronicas' "4Eva" - above the main two voices. Is it a harmonic? I'm not sure. But it made me think of this rather incredible interview I read a few weeks ago about Mark "Spike" Stent, who has mixed - well, every giant pop star, really, including Gwen Stefani, the Veronicas, the Spice Girls, Britney Spears, Bjork... and Madonna, of course. There is a science of pop-music. Those three minutes that blow you apart were put together on equipment worth hundreds of thousands of pounds by people that have the sorts of technical skills otherwise necessary for building robots to reach Mars, to perform micro-surgery via the internet. But instead, they are compressed and, via the structures of music, they are used to deliver so many hits to your aural senses in every second that you are left only with confusion, and emotion. It all goes too fast for intellectual breakdown and comprehension - much like a simple thought for someone who is stoned. The elements go past so quickly that it seems profound, immense.

Addendum: counterposed to Stent's method and that article are these comments by Burial in this interview. All the same, note how both Stent and Burial emphasise 'feel'. Don't be fooled by this talk of science, ladies and gentlemen, we have Romantics on our hands!

Saturday, June 10, 2006

I detest I detest I detest, this zombie that I so easily become when the internet is within reach again. Procrastination. Deferral. Deferral of what? Deferral of ... Freedom? Or work? Hiding in the burrow of my study, assuming the pose of work-doing - hey, I'm at a keyboard - but looking at everything except the books next to me. The internet allows one to become passive, a conduit for text, with no need to ever engage a core, focussed thought-process. And so I become blank and numb when taken away from the computer after sitting for hours on end, sucking down everything that I can get my eyes and my clicks on. The world barely seems to be infront of me, after a long session. I have to drag myself everywhere, I become so dependent on stimulus - the act of clicking: 'give me more, give me more, postpone it a little longer, one of these pages must hold the answer'.

Thursday, June 08, 2006

So, Ted Baillieu has come out (no pun intended) in favour of same-sex civil unions: "Baillieu backs gay unions".
Mr Ballieu told ABC radio he supported "the notion of there being a civil union of sorts, which registers relationships". [....] But there should be a clear separation between gay civil unions and marriage, which he called an institution that "needs to be protected and preserved".

What on earth does this mean? 'Protected and preserved'? Has anyone in this entire 'debate' - either here or abroad - ever actually explained what these rubbish catchphrases mean? 'Preserve the sanctity of marriage' and so on. It is taken for granted that gay unions are a threat, that the more they start to look like our, traditional marriages, the more they will potentially... What? I don't follow the logic of this. I don't know what outcome is being threatened. The annihilation or dissolution of heterosexual marriage, amidst a sea of ersatz gay counterfeits?

Perhaps a representative selection of heterosexual marriages could be moved to a zoo or a wildlife preserve and kept there, just in case the wild, natural, man-and-woman-in-the-church variety someday becomes extinct. Would this serve to 'protect and preserve' the institution? I'm sure the Greens would get behind a straight wildlife preserve. It might be our only prospect of a bipartisan approach on the issue.

Monday, June 05, 2006


Sunday, June 04, 2006

Wasting your time


Getting informed?

A most interesting article on 'grups', aka 'indie yuppies', hap'd upon while poking about Dissensus. Well-worth a read:

"Up With Grups - The Ascendant Breed of Grown-Ups Who Are Redefining Adulthood"

He owns eleven pairs of sneakers, hasn’t worn anything but jeans in a year, and won’t shut up about the latest Death Cab for Cutie CD. But he is no kid. He is among the ascendant breed of grown-up who has redefined adulthood as we once knew it and killed off the generation gap.

Friday, June 02, 2006

Nearly there...

I should be back from this rather long hiatus shortly. I have the devil of broadband internet access nearby me now... Will it be my download or my saviour?*** Only time will tell.

In the meanwhile, I don't understand it at all, but I've been listening to the Breezeblock set that is linked here. It's really something.

Longtime readers will be pleased to hear that I handed in an essay the other week. Once this happens a few more times, I'll be able to dedicate myself to my other callings. But until then, I won't have much for your eyes. Bis später dann, aber nicht zu spät!

[***Addendum: that sentence was supposed to say, 'will it be my downfall or my saviour'. I've left that rather telling typographical slip there, as I think it gestures at what the answer will ultimately be...]