Stanley Kubrick didn’t like giving long interviews, but he loved playing chess. So when the physicist and writer Jeremy Bernstein paid him a visit to gather material for a piece for The New Yorker about a new film project he was writing with Arthur C. Clarke, Kubrick was intrigued to learn that Bernstein was a fairly serious chess player. After Bernstein’s brief article on Kubrick and Clarke, “Beyond the Stars,” appeared in the magazine’s “Talk of the Town” section in April of 1965, Bernstein proposed doing a full-length New Yorker profile on the filmmaker and his new project. For some reason, Kubrick accepted. So later that year Bernstein flew to England, where Kubrick was getting ready to film 2001: A Space Odyssey. Bernstein stayed there for much of the filming, playing chess with Kubrick every day between takes. When the piece eventually ran in The New Yorker it was appropriately titled “How About a Little Game?”
BY LA WEEKLY
Those who say punk is dead tend to be those who wish punk were dead, either still somehow threatened by the culture or — this is more likely — chagrined that punks still don’t give a shit what they think. Punk is, of course, very much alive in 2013, particularly in regions like Southern California. It also lives on in the below albums, punk’s twenty greatest. Hey! Ho! Let’s go!
BY IAN SVENONIUS
Marion Barry, the much maligned former mayor of Washington, DC, is mostly known as a punch line. As a synonym for “smoking crack,” he embodied white America’s media-based fantasy of 80s urban blacks—entitled, lazy, corrupt, drug addled, and taking advantage of poor white people’s Christian tendency toward guilt and giving.
BY HENRY ROLLINS
Photo by Heidi May [Look for your weekly fix from the one and only Henry Rollins right here on West Coast Sound every Thursday, and come back tomorrow for the awesomely annotated playlist for his Sunday KCRW broadcast.]
A few days before the midterm elections, I got this unsigned email:
“How are you going to feel when the Republicans take the Senate on Tuesday, just like they took the House because of your POS hero Obama? Arrogance and incompetence by that fucktard Oliar led to this so thanks for voting for the hack, LMAO!!!”
It was my first good laugh of the day. It was like getting email bombed by an energy drink–addled 13-year-old. Is there any political office you would like to occupy if this was one of your constituents?
BY EMILY COLUCCI
Greer Lankton with one of her works, 1996 (Photo by Annie O’Neill, via artnet.com)
One aspect of our collective Filthy Dreams personality that you, dear reader, can be sure of is our ability to get unabashedly, giddily excited at a moment’s notice. Just a mention of Santa Claus near the holidays sends us spiraling into the sleazy stratosphere. It doesn’t even matter how far in advance this event, exhibition, concert or book release is–we’ll just gush and gush until that event actually happens. Which brings me to the announcement last week that Lower East Side nonprofit art space Participant Inc. is working on a major solo exhibition of trans artist Greer Lankton’s phenomenal, genderqueer art in November 2014.
BY LINDSAY ZOLADZ
Hatsune Miku, one of Japan’s most famous pop stars, has been 16 for the past seven years. She wears her cascading aquamarine hair in pigtails that skim the ground when she dances, and according to stats offered up on her record company’s website, she stands five-two and weighs about 93 pounds. She has opened for Lady Gaga, collaborated with Pharrell, and sung more than 100,000 songs, dabbling quite literally in every genre imaginable. If you’ve heard of her, you’ve probably heard her described as a “hologram”; maybe you’ve also heard people say she doesn’t exist. But both of these are the kind of misnomers that are liable to send her legions of die-hard fans — and there are 2.5 million of them on Facebook — into cardiac arrest. (Don’t even think about calling her a cartoon.) She is, depending on whom you ask, a harbinger of a radically collaborative future in pop music or a holographic horsewoman of the apocalypse. Indeed, last month, shortly after she made her much-discussed American-network debut on The Late Show With David Letterman and shortly before her two headlining shows at the Hammerstein Ballroom, a New York Times headline wondered, “Does Hatsune Miku’s Ascent Mean the End of Music As We Know It?”
BY ADAM LERNER
Mark Mothersbaugh, best known as frontman of pioneering new wave band DEVO, opens up to Museum of Contemporary Art Denver director Adam Lerner about his work as a visual artist.
Don’t miss “Myopia,” MCA Denver retrospective show of Mothersbaugh’s art, on display through April 2015.
BY DAN COLMAN
If you heard our interview on The John Batchelor Show tonight (catch it at the 29:50 mark), and if you want to check out the marvelous clip of Vladimir Nabokov reading Lolita, here it is. Don’t forget to find us on Twitter and Facebook:
The Clash had been called sellouts ever since they signed with CBS and made their 1977 debut, so the charge was pretty stale when certain critics lobbed it at their turn to disco-flavored new wave and “arena rock” in 1982’s popular Combat Rock. As Allmusic writes of the record, “if this album is, as it has often been claimed, the Clash’s sellout effort, it’s a very strange way to sell out.” Combat Rock’s hits—“Rock the Casbah” and “Should I Stay or Should I Go”—are catchy and anthemic, respectively, but this hardly breaks new stylistic ground, though the sounds are cleaner and the influences more diffuse. But the true standouts for my money—“Straight to Hell” and “Ghetto Defendant”—perfect the strain of reggae-punk The Clash had made their career-long experiment.
In a confessional essay penned at the Hope Rehab Centre in Thailand and published by The Independent, The Libertines singer and guitarist recalled early experiences with drugs and the negative impact using had on the band.
“I remember after we signed that record deal I was offered a line of coke and I soon started washing it up and smoking crack,” wrote Doherty. “Carl [Barât] didn’t like it. He couldn’t stand crack or heroin, and he didn’t like the people I was hanging out with. So the band split up.”