Friday, February 29, 2008
Click here to see Rock and Role Model History in the making! --
Str8 Sounds on NME
Click here to see the
NME 2008 Award Winners
May I help you with your music marketing? If I work really hard for a few seconds, maybe I can make your band as successful as mine is being.
Read on wayfaring pilgrim of sonic explorations...
Step up, player, to the NME: New Musical Express. That and October magazine and Art Forum magazine, plus some theory of Jacques Derrida and a few micro-novels by Maurice Blanchot, are all you basically need to be as hip and cool as you know you really ought to be. Shame on you for giving up, and in, so easily!
Lucky for you, we at Sludge Farm Records, are here and there -- in everybody's hair!!! -- and have come to repair.
NME (New Musical Express) is the Rolling Stone magazine of the UK. All the Brits go ape over it. The hippest and most talented new rock musicians are showcased there.
Str8 Sounds and Sludge Farm Records, my new music marketing company, are proud to be featured in the NME Awards 2008 video index. They did a pretty good job of displaying some of my better videos up front in their online display of my horrible, miserable music-visual assaults.
Free music videos from NME.com!
Watch the latest video interviews, gig and concert videos, track by track album guides, backstage and behind the scenes footage, tour diaries from all your favourite bands and the best music videos from YouTube.
From locations across the world and from NME's very own video studio in London.
Str8 Sounds on NME
NME is way more prestigious in music circles than the American rag Rolling Stone. Talk about a great way to kick off my new music marketing company! This is what you hope will happen once you've been in business many years, not right off the bat! LOL
New STR8 SOUNDS song on MySpaceMusic: "Song Against Me"
I can't stop watching this video, the Logitech computer speakers with sub-woofer is cranked up to maximum volume. It appears to be a finely crafted collage of a few live songs by Alec Empire, of Atari Teenage Riot, from a very recent Warsaw gig. He has a finesse that's quite charming, and the light show is very simple but effective. It's an exciting thing Alec is sharing with us here.
Alec Empire is the genius anarchist musician from the astonishing Atari Teenage Riot. His solo work is fascinating, reminds me of late Iggy Pop and The Fall with hard electronics.
My new Simple Definition of "Anarchy"
Alec Empire with Hellish Vortex
Live in Warsaw
Alec Empire Live in Warsaw Feb 08
Add to My Profile | More Videos
Thursday, February 28, 2008
Here are some photos I took tonight, plus a couple other odds and ends, for my buddies, The Skabs (Peoria).
The new Skabs album, "Revenge of the Skabs", recorded at Chocolate Ladyland Studio by Jeff Gregory, on Black and Blue Records, is about them crawling back from the dead, to haunt the punk rock scene.
"Revenge of the Skabs" will be a CD album and a film that I will be shooting, producing, and promoting for them.
Back from the dead? Yeah. See, the Skabs were formed by Gabby Skab, after Bloody Mess & the Skabs imploded and fractured and nightmared. Bloody formed new band Bloody Mess & the Transfusions. The Skabs is the residue of original drummer Gabby and original guitarist Slappy.
That image above is the logo I made for them from some altered zombie action figure dolls I found in the cellar of Zeller Mental Asylum (1903 - 1972) in Bartonville, Illinois.
I actually did NOT take the photos below, but I fiddled with them graphically a bit.
Above is the actual poster of the infamous, controversial, mind-boggling show at the German-American Society Hall, Peoria, IL in 1992, I think was the year.
Bloody Mess and I had to meet with the Lieutenant of the Vice Squad in a secret police bunker after the show. Some redneck conservative bullies got the shit kicked out of them by some gay punk bikers, and the sissy boys tried to sue me and Bloody, since we were the ones who signed the contract for the hall. The fighting in the mosh pit happened during slam dancing, but the violence was not the fault of the music.
I began my performance with a radio tape announcing warplanes going to Iraq, the first stupid bombing raid of the first Persian Gulf War, aka the Hailburton/Oil Baron War.
Jeffrey John is the guy who made the Microwave UFOs create a website and blog for The Skabs. He didn't charge them anything, all the work was free. Did you realize that UFOs are easily enslaved? He makes them pesky flying saucers do all kinds of free stuff for us.
Lovely Chelsea Darling, international punk fashion princess, is a good friend and ally of The Skabs.
Wednesday, February 20, 2008
This description of 1200 monks, at the beginning of the Lotus of the True Law, a Buddhist Mahayana text of special fortuity, could apply to any true spiritual sojourners:
"...all of them Arhats, stainless, free from depravity, self-controlled, thoroughly emancipated in thought and knowledge, of noble breed, (like unto) great elephants, having done their task, done their duty, acquitted their charge, reached the goal; in whom the ties which bound them to existence were wholly destroyed, whose minds were thoroughly emancipated by perfect knowledge, who had reached the utmost perfection in subduing all their thoughts; who were possessed of the transcendent faculties; eminent disciples..."
And this is what all true believers endeavor to achieve, until the voice within is clear and the inner light is brightening all the nooks and crannies. Dissipating the gloom of many kotis of creatures, releasing them from sadistic misanthropic conditioning by domination system planners.
The highly esteemed and treasured Lotus of the True Law contains many beautiful passages for enlightening the mind and re-orienting the soul.
Monday, February 18, 2008
You must decide if your music is mainstream (generic) or avant garde (innovative).
If your music is for the nihilist normals out there, you should probably play it straight and give a brief factual history. New fans may appreciate a recitation of all your awards and venues played.
However, if your music is designed for the underground, techno, anti-rock star, DIY, art-damaged outsider, free jazz, improvisational classical, or punk scene, you should probably be more creative in how you present your band.
Some bands have interesting histories, with members creating side bands and split-off groups. But new (and obscure) bands that don't have any gory or astonishing backgrounds can be more playful with their descriptions.
Here are some examples of creative profile information (About, Sounds Like, etc.) on MySpaceMusic.
.....more biography to come.....
"this heat was formed from the collective desire of its individual members
not to be in other peoples groups"
"This Heat, the first record,
(The Blue and Yellow ) was a landmark release.
It tore up the book and laid new rules
for band composition and performance.
The music was without precedent;
the musicians uncompromising;
the recordings hammeringly intense
and the sound deep, radical, and rich.
This was music stripped back to the bone but never simplified.
And over time it has also proved itself prescient;
there are musical innovations here
that anticipate genres that would take
another 15 years to reappear."
For booking or if you want a copy of the pretty cd pictured below: beautifultraps [at] gmail [dot] com
You can also stream and download the entire record right here, but you'll have to rationalize mp3's accession to the throne in a way that is completely different from your blind acceptance of cassette tape's triumph over vinyl records.
Brian Reichert and The Thomas Jefferson Airplane
Dear Everyone, I'm sorry, I can't write to each of you individually, but our family counselor said it was important to get this letter out to everyone as quickly as possible. It's sad that we have to send a message like this. We realize that almost all of you who gave money to Little Jay gave it in good faith, but please, DO NOT loan Jay Junior any more money. Jay Junior wasn't trying to take advantage of anyone. He just wanted to be certain that he was getting enough foods from the Meat Group. The meat that can be returned, will be. The meat that has already gone bad, Jay Junior will pay for out of his own pocket. All of your money will be returned.
Bringing you back soundscapes from her numerous trips to various galaxies and alternate dimensions, Rainbow Kandicaine is a channel for an innovative new sound: "psychedelic kandy-kore with a dark goa twist." On the 13th day of January 1988, a Capricorn with a Scorpio Moon & Libra Ascendent named Jackie was born to a loving family in Rochester, NY. Growing up with goals to become a fine artist, it wasn't until the summer of 2005 that she began to realize her abilities as a musician. Starting off small, using garageband, she began to develop her sound and expand her repertoire. In early 2007, she adopted the name Rainbow Kandicaine and began spreading her good vibes to the masses. Now, releasing the harmonies from deep within her soul, a different new psychedelic landscape arises with each track, creating an abstract atmosphere within the listeners' psyche. Take a trippy kaleidoscope trip to a foreign land in your mind with Rainbow Kandicaine!!!!
Stephen Malkmus (ex-Pavement)
Real Emotional Trash, the new album from Stephen Malkmus & The Jicks
“I am not a present to be opened up and parceled out again,” our man insists on “Gardenia,” track seven on his new album. Ha! That’s what you think, pal. From the day nigh two decades ago when the first scratchy sounds of Pavement floated in the ether above Stockton (crown jewel of California’s Central Valley, the sprawling breadbasket that neither the North or the South have claimed in California’s ongoing “two states” culture war; just providing some historical context that will be useful a few sentences later), the music of Stephen Malkmus has been the gift that keeps on keepin’ on.
Did SM not offer the eternal promise of “perfect sound forever”? Was this sly appropriation of a digital age boast for Pavement’s low-bandwidth treble-kicks not a prescient example of that “irony” thing everybody talked about in the ‘90s? Can we then conclude that that by invoking “paralyzed dreams forever” on this album Malkmus foretells some sort of bad moon on the rise?
Hell, I don’t know, and I’m the omniscient narrator of this artist bio. But I will point out that much of Real Emotional Trash, his fourth "solo" LP (this one credited with The Jicks, like his second, Pig Lib), is decidedly low-down and heavy. It could hardly be otherwise with monster drummer Janet Weiss now a full-fledged Jick, alongside bassist Joanna Bolme and guitar/keyboardist Mike Clark.
Meanwhile, Malkmus the guitar hero is on full display here. “Dragonfly Pie,” “Baltimore,” and the title track are alchemic combinations of intricate composition and unfettered jam. Whoa, did I actually type the phrase “unfettered jam”? Scratch that. (Did I actually say “scratch that”? It’s a good thing I'm anonymous as well as omniscient.)
Malkmus’ genius is that he knows exactly when to fetter. These songs may sprawl like the Central Valley (told you), they may spread out like a jet’s flame, but when they reach that last tract house they gracefully spread their wings and head for the unclaimed land beyond. Indeed, although Malkmus makes the Pacific Northwest his home, this feels like a “California” album. Check out how “Real Emotional Trash” begins as a modern-day “Tonight’s the Night,” before evolving into a road trip from the Mexican border to Marin, in the tradition of Pavement’s “Unfair.” And dig those Allman Bros. leads (really!).
Elsewhere, “We Can’t Help You” channels the Band’s “The Weight,” tapping that same vein of late-night melancholia and early-morning lucidity. “Cold Son” sounds like a cruise down the Ventura Highway. And if another song released this year makes you smile as much as “Gardenia,” I have a rare Crust Brothers bootleg with your name on it. While I cannot get with the song’s insistence that its singer is not a “present,” I can sympathize with one line: “don’t want to damn you with the faintest praise.” That’s what it feels like to write about this record, tossing around those historical comparisons, making you read about it when you could be listening to it. So listen, already.
Times New Viking
Breath in: snuff a line speed, a half hour jump on your cheap amplifiers, salad yet once a half hour with you yet cheaper guitar against the wall. Write eleven popliedjes, lay the emphasis on cryptic and forget everything your song teacher you ever learned has. Seek your neighbor girl on and tell her that your musics will make. Lay her emphatically from that she must not try to sing. Stick, now that you it really are, also just your tongue between her lips till you certainly are that they that rather has not. Give her then you eleven popliedjes and (optioneel) a guitar. Question her these eleven popliedjes with you together to not to sing, expect of it surplus. Mess what with the buttons on the amplifier, let the hamster of your neighbor girl also once over the strings run, sign the head of the father of your neighbor girl on the skins of a Bears Smit drumstel, call her feather ten-year-old little brother and lay from that its father him really real hatred. Breath out: and voila, Yourself Summoned. Sounds good? Sounds in it really yet better. Blessed with a delicious dose ADHD-spontaneity and a fine nose for popmelodieën know Tim New Viking on Summoned Yourself a particular charming pot borrow-fi garagepop down to dump. A kind of contemporary version of The Shaggs, but then without the implicit family tie. More a neighbor boy-neighbor girl tie thus.
When People Were Shorter and Lived Near the Water
When People Were Shorter and Lived Near the Water, the Brooklyn, New York gaggle of merry pranksters fronted by double singers Kim M. Rancourt and Joey DeFilipps, is devoted to conceptual covers of material from outside sources. Depending on one's point of view, the work can be viewed as deconstructing the originals, partying with them or pummeling unsuspecting songs into submission. They sound like punch-drunk travelers who've taken a wrong turn and wandered into a quiet seacoast village, but, undaunted, come rolling out of their bus into the town square and begin singing songs of their homeland. But what seem, on first exposure, to be wildly exuberant first-take performances, are when called for actually smart arrangements. And dumb arrangements when they're called for. These workmen use the right tool for the job....
Caroliner Rainbow Bluembiegh Treason of the Abyss
(NOTE: Cottypearile of Caroliner sent me a message stating the full name of the band is now Caroliner Rainbow Wire Thin Sheep Baking Exhibit. I think their name changes with every new release, but I'm in the midst of verifying this fact right now as we speak.)
-Applehead back pack -American Nail Umbrella -Banjo Lump -The Barn Attic Dullard -The Battling Pigllist -Berims -Berjums -Bingo Marvin -Big Mouth Driesuhen -Both Oars -Brazen and Meticulous Pintle -Brown Tools -B'sau Sau -BulkCue -Bullerma -Bullup -Buytime -Buttercup Lesson -Chance Century -Chapel Rimmer -Chloras (or Chlora) -Chicken Climber -Christo B. Panim -Chimney Pinch -Clam'd -Claytonia -Cottypearile -Country Thumcake -Croakalypse -Croq Braids -Crap Hat Carson -Cudskin -Daydostuffice -Darrieny Diddle O -Dirt Sheet Sue -Doey Bulch -Dobersores -Doxie Goodpatty -Elk Possum -Fawn Brodye -The Felt Pelt -The Four Armed Sheriff From Greenway -The Flying Sluicebox -Gripplea -Gris Welled -Groat Pulp -Grub Caliber -Gumfry Bullcue -Gumfry Pumple Possession -Hack Hack -Ma and Pa Hair Ointment -Harpfart -Herding Pounds -Horsemetia -Horsepimp -Hocrag -Horse Pump -Hotel Crisp Reads -Hug Leg Lesy -The Hundred-Mile Banner Man -The Indian Tongue Wink -Jib Lipprint -The Knowledge Breadboxer -Koy Coy -Lake Shore Pelt -Leaf Pants -Leatherlip Luke -Letter From The Heart Of The Spitstorm -Log Mooner -The Luminous Lump -Log Groom -Loud Amen Cushion -Lousy Stinking Stanley -Mangerugg -Mold Certificate -Mittens Samdrags -M.L. Drinurne -The Mole Certificate -Mosie -Old Ben Spayed -Peoplepies -Piddlestick Guillotine -Pinkboy -Pin Cusser -PudGeist -Pulpy -Puppy Who Wounds -Rarespit -Regurgitotems -Rim and Dot Raisers -Roopy de Rupert -Rungs -Rim and Dot Raisers -Shithouse Papermaid -Silence Eater -Silverbean -Silver Stump -Sink Me Augustus -Slobberhouse Sock -Soakmadill -Sore Pony Lore -Spider Compass -Squire Marvin -Stan Cakes -Swearing Tar -Testecott -Temperance of the Flies -Threadhold -The Three Padded Brain -Thunder Sun Dung -Timber Amplifier -Tip The Scales My Wayne -Tisco Van -Top Knot Tom -Toothless And Twenty Four -Trusted Knuckleman -The Wells of Wallyton, VA. -Vests of Skin -Welcome To The Last Day On Earth -The Western Hand Builder -Woodpatty -William Silverstumps -Yacopper Neckashower -Yeast Scroll
Thursday, February 14, 2008
MySpaceMusic is the networking community you need to be on if you're a musician, song writer, rock photographer, record label, net label, or any business serving the music industry.
You begin your community building by Friending other bands you like. Be sure to include local bands and venues. In Peoria, for example, it's smart to Friend the Peoria Pizza Works, The Meeting Place, Peoria Shows, and LiveMusicPeoria.
Friend all your favorite groups and musicians. Why? Because, if they accept your Friend Request, you are allowed "in". That means: you can post comments on their page and they can do so on yours. In other words, you suddenly have an effective way to communicate with them.
When you post a comment, say something nice and specific. Not just "Love your music, been a fan for years." That's too vague and generic. Say instead "Love your Rip It Off CD." or "I bought your first 3 albums as a teen back in the 1980s. Saw you in concert in Chicago, and it was me and my wife's first date."
Imagine the band reading your comment, and saying "Wow. That's cool." Maybe they'll quote your comment to their friends and record label executives. If you recently read a quote by them in Rolling Stone, comment on that. Think of some way to stand out and get noticed by the band.
If you get a lot of spam comments, you may want to use moderation with delayed posting. That means each comment has to be approved by you before it gets posted. If you don't have a big spam problem, you can just manually delete any spam that sneaks in.
If the band posted an image in your comment area, you can return the favor and put some cool art image in their comment area. The most welcome images are ones that are non-promotional, just abstract or weird. Images announcing new mp3s or CDs for sale or shows? These are generally not appreciated. You may even be scolded with "Use your own page for self-promotions, not my page."
When you get a Friend Request on MySpaceMusic, be very careful.
Spammers abound, and you don't want comment spammers loading your comment area with their links and images. Spam comments may link to malicious sites that will put spyware, viruses, Trojans or other malware on your computer and network.
Always click on the band or person's name and visit their page, before clicking Accept. Take a look around. After a while, you'll get a sense of what's a real band and what's a fake, meaning a page set up for spamming, that pretends to be a fan or a band.
There is one particular spammer on MySpaceMusic who uses a different name, but the page is always the same. You'll see a girl with a laptop, and the caption reads something like "Click link below to view my private sexy photos. They may be too hot for some to handle."
Microwave Windows is another spammer on MySpaceMusic.
When you visit some band sites on MySpaceMusic, you'll notice a lot of spam comments, full of links to stuff being sold, or big images containing hype for products, like ringtones or visitor trackers, often with Tom's face on it, in a pitiful attempt to look legitimate.
Pay attention to these spammers, what kind of fake avatars they use, what their names are. Often the avatar will be a guy playing a guitar, to simulate being a musician.
If a band has a lot of spam in their comments, it's probably because it's a fan site that's not monitored, or the band fails to check their page regularly, or the band members don't understand what comment spam is and how to avoid and delete it.
Remember: spam is not just annoying, it can also be very dangerous. Spam links may go to malicious sites that attach damaging code to your computer.
For example, there is malicious code that turns your computer into a "zombie" in a "botnet".
SANS Botnet whitepaper
It's called a zombie because it's doing things as if in a trance, without you being aware of it. Botnet means a network of robotic computers, all obeying the spam master.
In other words, your computer becomes transformed into a subservient machine that launches spam and virus attacks on other people.
Here's a botnet definition from SearchSecurity.
A botnet (also known as a zombie army) is a number of Internet computers that, although their owners are unaware of it, have been set up to forward transmissions (including spam or viruses) to other computers on the Internet.
Any such computer is referred to as a zombie - in effect, a computer "robot" or "bot" that serves the wishes of some master spam or virus originator. Most computers compromised in this way are home-based. According to a report from Russian-based Kaspersky Labs, botnets -- not spam, viruses, or worms -- currently pose the biggest threat to the Internet. A report from Symantec came to a similar conclusion.
Computers that are coopted to serve in a zombie army are often those whose owners fail to provide effective firewalls and other safeguards. An increasing number of home users have high speed connections for computers that may be inadequately protected.
A zombie or bot is often created through an Internet port that has been left open and through which a small Trojan horse program can be left for future activation. At a certain time, the zombie army "controller" can unleash the effects of the army by sending a single command, possibly from an Internet Relay Channel (IRC) site.
The computers that form a botnet can be programmed to redirect transmissions to a specific computer, such as a Web site that can be closed down by having to handle too much traffic - a distributed denial-of-service (DDoS) attack - or, in the case of spam distribution, to many computers.
The motivation for a zombie master who creates a DDoS attack may be to cripple a competitor. The motivation for a zombie master sending spam is in the money to be made. Both of them rely on unprotected computers that can be turned into zombies.
Keep these principles in mind, and you should have a very productive time interacting, promoting, and sharing with others on MySpaceMusic.
The Str8 Sounds
Wednesday, February 13, 2008
The FBI is warning us: DO NOT OPEN any Valentine's Day ecards. Or you may get a Storm Worm or other malware that will damage your computer or your company's network, turning them into zombie slaves for a malicious spammer botnet.
Ecards are cards that are "sent" via email, though you normally have to click on a link to visit a site to see the personal message "on" on the "card". This opens you up to computer viruses, spyware, or multi-payload Trojans.
If you must be old fashioned and use email, please disable HTML in your email client, and don't open any emails or attachments from strangers.
If you unexpectedly receive a Valentine’s Day e-card, be careful. It may not be from a secret admirer, but instead might contain the Storm Worm virus.
With the holiday approaching, be on the lookout for spam e-mails spreading the Storm Worm malicious software (malware). The e-mail directs the recipient to click on a link to retrieve the electronic greeting card (e-card).
Once the user clicks on the link, malware is downloaded to the Internet-connected device [PC, laptop, etc.] and causes it to become infected and part of the Storm Worm botnet. A botnet is a network of compromised machines under the control of a single user. Botnets are typically set up to facilitate criminal activity such as spam e-mail, identity theft, denial of service attacks, and spreading malware to other machines on the Internet.
Tuesday, February 12, 2008
Have you ever encountered a vampire blog ?
I mean the kind that sucks content out of your blog and spits into theirs, usually with no credit or link to you? This is plagiarism and content theft. You can't stop it, but you can foil it and mess with their heads really bad.
Here's how it happens.
Your blog is registered with Technorati. To find out what other blogs are linking to you, you and your readers can click on the Technorati link. Suddenly, at the Technorati site, you see weird blogs linking to you.
The blogs have low authority, and are obviously just RSS feeders. They are set up to automatically pull content from random blogs on a specific topic. The purpose of these vampire blogs is to draw visitors to their site, using your keyword-rich content, in hopes that the deceived visitors will click on some freaking ads!
I will give you a link to a vampire blog, but don't click on anything. It might attach spyware or viruses to your computer. Just look, don't touch anything!
Here you go: Online Music.
Why is this creepy, crappy website a Vampire Blog?
Because it has stolen my content, "7 tips on MySpaceMusic marketing", and plopped it into their blog. They are calling the author of my post "Zack Miller", rather than me. That's okay though. I have a way to deal with this.
I am going to do something that will cause them some problems.
Fortune. Fortunate. What comes to your mind when you hear these words?
Money? Physical possessions acting as status symbols? Then you're a mammonist, materialist, a money-worshipper / thing-accumulator. You are outward-directed, superficial, and entranced by the fleeting shadows of the klesas and aggregates.
Good health? Peace? Joy? Friendship? Self-fulfillment? Then you're an immaterialist, one who values intangibles, an advanced metaphysical being.
"Hey, Vaspers, if you're so smart, which we cannot deny, how come you don't live in Trump Towers?" a gentle reader recently asked me.
Do you think smart people all live in places like Trump Towers?
Do you think that the money a person has is a reliable determinant of the value of advice a person gives? Would you seek counsel from a slick talker in a $5,000 suit driving a Bentley, rather than a sincere and altruistic expert in khakis and a sweater, who rides a bicycle to work to stay in shape?
Sure, we don't seek experts in soup kitchens and cardboard shacks. But I also don't seek them in Trump Towers.
Those who exploit the downtrodden often like to make a vain show of their vehicles and homes, their gold and silver. Then let their material possessions be their security blankets, as immaterialists dive inside and touch the pulse of creation.
When Sean Hannity bragged insecurely about driving a Cadillac Escalade, as though that proved his ideology was more correct than Combs', I felt real sorry for Sean. Con artists also boast of their penthouses and fancy dames...until the law catches up to them.
Gambling casinos, prescription painkillers, and investment scams is how God takes money away from bad rich people, while making sure the poor devout (in deed, not doctrine) have every need met, and more.
Anyone who leans on the material realm for status, satisfaction, and serenity is sorely misguided. Because of this affliction, I'm afraid some might turn their noses up at my modest requirements.
No, I don't live in Trump Towers.
But remember the con artists who are financially successful at ripping people off. They like to live in such dwellings, for the ostentatious display and lavish lifestyle temporarily covers over the dying embers of guilt in their impoverished hearts.
Having all your real needs met, an ample supply of items geared to self-fulfillment endeavors (in my case, it's music and film), and a growing community of online and physical world friends.
These are the enduring and truly valuable fruits of correct living and proper ideology.