catching up with
daniel ash the gospel according to
mens fashion style . insight . inspiration AUXILIARY october 2009
editor s letter
Halloween, how could we resist? Fall is defiantly here and Halloween merchandise is flooding into stores. I’m a giddy little kid looking at all the spooky useless items I could buy but on the other hand, gagging at some of the tackiness that comes with any commercial holiday (though some tackiness is good… it’s a fine line). So appropriate to the season, we had to indulge and include some fun Halloween themed articles and features. Though we were sure to include plenty of other content. We have an amazing interview with Doc Hammer. He was able to fit in time for us between voice recording and editing sessions for the upcoming season of The Venture Brothers and we’ve been working non-stop to pull it together in the eleventh hour, with a last minute late night photoshoot in his studio in New York City and our own late night editing sessions. Along with discussion of his many projects, the interview includes some insight on men’s fashion. This fit very nicely into our October issue, as this issue features our first full-on men’s fashion editorial. Like always, thank you for reading and hope you enjoy! The issue is done and we’re off to our launch party in Albany!
Auxiliary Magazine. Auxiliary = alternative, supplementary, to provide what is missing, to give support.
We have always had a love for the dark, the different, the unique, the creative. But from all sides we’ve heard what we love is on it’s way out, is suffering, is dying, is dead. Today an alternative aesthetic is seen more than ever. Yet the core, the base, the scene (gasp!); everyone is telling us is in a sad state. Reality is what you make it. Our goal is to provide high quality fashion editorials, photographs, and articles; unique reviews and insights on the best music out there; and to create discussion and passion about alternative lifestyles. There is a lot of amazing and creative stuff happening. We hope to find it, highlight it, and encourage it to grow. And that is why we’ve created Auxiliary Magazine; an online magazine dedicated to fashion, music, and lifestyle with a darker aesthetic. There are no other boundaries than that. That is the strong point of alternative culture; and we hope to include it all.
Sincerely, Jennifer Link
And that is a lot of ground to cover. So contribute! Send us your fashion, your music, your events, your opinions, your projects, your ideas. This magazine isn’t for a select few, we don’t know it all, this magazine is for you and what we all love.
Photographs / Illustrations
Editor in Chief Jennifer Link
Aaron Andrews Meagan Breen Jim Cole W. Edward Cook Luke Copping Rachel Haywire Mike Kieffer Vanity Kills Jennifer Link Rachel Mazurek Paul Morin Darren M. Orlowski Numi Prasarn Sally Reardon Edwin Somnambulist
Photographers Jennifer Link www.jennifer-link.com Luke Copping www.lukecopping.com Omar Robinson Steve Prue www.teamrockstarimages.com Ron Douglas www.photo.mediafall.com
Fashion Editor Meagan Breen Music Editor Mike Kieffer Associate Editor Luke Copping Copy Editor Jenny Santomauro
Illustrations on 19, 25, and 36 Maki Naro www.page8productions.com Photographs on 21 Steve Prue www.teamrockstarimages.com Photographs on 22 and 23 Robert Massey
www.auxiliarymagazine.com email : firstname.lastname@example.org
Photograph on 31 Chris Jensen
issue 6 : october 2009 ISSN 1948-9676
Logo Design Melanie Beitel
Photograph on 36 Lee Henderson
No part of this publication may be reproduced in any form or by any means, electronic or mechanical, without the permission in writting from the publisher, except small excerpts for review purposes. Submitted work, reviews, ads, and photographs are copyrighted by their respective owners and fall under previous declaration. Copyright Auxiliary Magazine 2009.
Layout Design Jennifer Link Kristen Szramkowski Luke Copping
Photographs on 42 and 43 Jennifer Link
AUXILIARY october 2009
on the cover daniel ash : 30 doc hammer : 37 mens fashion : 40
Photographer : Jennifer Link Makeup : Designs by LJ Hair : Marlo Marquise Model : Marlo Marquise
6 beauty still remains 12 fatal femmes hollywood inspired glamour for halloween 18 update the 60s mod 19 shriek chic beauty picks for halloween
37 Doc Hammer an interview with one of the minds behind The Venture Brothers
30 Daniel Ash 32 music reviews 16Volt, Clan of Xymox, The Orb, A Place To Bury Strangers, and more 35 guest music review Rachel Haywire 35 quick picks 36 DJ tracks : Edwin Somnambulist 36 mix tape : halloween inspired
20 rpg : reality plus geeking
21 gothamâ€™s last stand the art, community, and culture of Last Rites Gallery 22 13 days of desolation behind Desolation Wilderness 24 film primer : unusual childrenâ€™s films
38 style alternatives to the halloween costume 40 boys be ambitious looks that will have you ruling the night 44 hardware accessories boasting a harder edge 59 where to buy
25 my life as a goth girl 26 the PinUp SharonTK in New York Couture
october 2009 AUXILIARY
s n i a m e r l l i t s y t u a be photographer Luke Copping makeup artist Rachel Mazurek hair stylist Erin Moser nails Vanity Salon styling consultant Meagan Breen models Helena Merditaj, Nichole M, and Rachel Green assistants Cris Puccia and Mollie Riester specimens provided by Dave Butler, Will Hall, Derek Hendrickson, and Mikael Niklas
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Fatal Femmes Hollywood inspired glamour for a classic Halloween
photographer Jennifer Link makeup artist Designs by LJ hair stylist Marlo Marquise models Marlo Marquise and Kess M
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making the old new again
The mod look of the 60s was a mutable yet influential style. The mods were originally a working class, fashion-conscious group arising in England during the late 50s and 60s. In terms of womenâ€™s fashion, the look combined androgynous elements with a self-conscious, well-edited sense of style. Menswear was often adapted to the female form and a uniquely simple but memorable makeup style was created. The mod style is being rediscovered as an elegant, fun look that is adaptable to contemporary fashion. It can be worn day to day if slightly toned down or the volume can be turned all the way up for social events or more creative applications. This is not a style to be afraid of, and it is about time it made its way back into the world of fashion.
For a mod look, hair should be simple but deceptively well crafted. Overall mod style tends to go one of two ways. The first being a chin length (or longer) very straight hairstyle, and the other being a very short hairstyle like the classic look donned by Twiggy. The trick to keeping a mod look modern is to keep it from being too severe. If going for the longer look, make sure it is well crafted and glossy. If picking the shorter look then add some texture to keep the style from being overly masculine. The lines of either style should be sharp and clean but should still flatter and frame the face well. The main concerns are shine and texture. A good setting spray and a shine product will greatly aid you in achieving this look.
Two words should define your eye application: simple and intense. The bright colors of the 60s mod look can be updated with modern pigments and products. Stick to one tone for the eyes and make sure it is bright and defined. Good palette choices are yellows, warm rust colors, and deep, almost metallic greens. The rest of the look should be about defining your shape with careful application of brightening whites and defining blacks. In contrast to the classic full bottom lash popular in 60s mod style, we have decided to soften the lash but anchor the lower eye with both a bright white and a strong line of black. A soft shimmery white or cream tone blended up into the brow line balances out the strong lower eye. A good lengthbuilding mascara or set of nice false lashes will finish this look off well. It is important to use an easy-to-control, well-pigmented product for this look. For our updated mod look, we used Yaby and Makeup Forever cosmetics.
To keep this look sharp and current, balance is very important. Since the style calls for very sharp and dramatic eyes, consider going with a simple nude or lightly tinted gloss. Subtle tones for the lips will compliment the shine of the hair while at the same time providing a softer component to this style. MAC makes a great line of wearable tinted glosses.
AUXILIARY october 2009
author Rachel Mazurek photographer Luke Copping makeup artist Rachel Mazurek hair stylist Kristin Draudt model Lydia Dominick assistants Cris Puccia and Mollie Riester
by Vanity Kills
Stop me if you’ve heard this before in the October edition of *insert name of generic beauty blog or fashion magazine here*: “Bewitching black nails bring all the boys to the yard.” Or, “bring out your inner rocker grrl with sultry smoky eyes.” Or, “punk up your pout with richly decadent wine lipstick,” alongside other generic goth beauty how-to’s you had mastered in your sleep about six years go. I, Vanity Kills, henceforth declare a moratorium on: Halloween homage to Kat Von D, complete with lopsided liquid eyeliner stars drawn on one’s face; proclamations that wearing $2.99 Wet N’Wild silver foil eyelashes still makes one “edgy” in 2009; and sketchy, allegedly pumpkin-pie-flavored waxy lip gunk that haunts the aisles of the local Rite Aid come every autumn. Instead, I humbly offer a fall beauty cheat sheet aimed at ladies who never bought a bagged Party City costume labeled “Corpse Cutie” or “Pretty in Punk”.
PERFUME macabre maven
EYES candy corn sweetie Eyeshadow - Miss-X Cosmetics . Limecrime . MAC
Funeral Home - Demeter Fragrance Library
available at surgeon-x.com, limecrimemakeup.com, maccosmetics.com . $12-17 Sample the saccharine flavors of seasonal sweets, minus the pesky side effect of falling into a diabetic coma, with tri-colored candy-corn-inspired eye shadow. Grab an eye shadow brush with a tapered edge and wet it a little. Dip your dampened brush into a bright tangerine pigment (try Orange Rolls Angel’s Spit by Miss X Aesthetic Industries) and gently tap, DO NOT SWIPE, the pigment across the outer 1/3 portion of your eyelid from lashline to crease. Clean your brush. Using the same technique, add some lemon yellow pigment (I recommend Lime Crime Magic Dust in Circus Girl) onto the middle 1/3 portion of your eyelid, from lashline to crease. Blend it into the tangerine pigment using a blending brush to ensure a smooth transition. Finally, with the help of a small fluffy brush, sweep frosty white eye shadow (such as MAC Cosmetics Eye Shadow in White Frost) onto the inner 1/3 portion of your lid, from lashline to crease. Blend into the lemon yellow pigment with a clean blending brush to prevent harsh lines.
available at www.demeterfragrance.com . $6-39.50 Question: What is the perfect accompaniment to your couture evening gown inspired by Morticia Addams that you just blew three months rent on? Answer: Demeter Fragrance Library Cologne in Funeral Home, naturally. A spellbinding scent crafted with the discerning tastes of the macabre maven who doesn’t just wish to live in a funeral parlor, but smell like one too. The faint of heart need not fret. Funeral Home’s fragrance notes consist of lilies, carnations, gladiolus, chrysanthemums with stems and leaves, with a hint of mahogany and oriental carpet. Notice how “partially decomposed cadaver” was omitted from the above list.
NAILS monster bride Nail Varnish - Obsessive Compulsive Cosmetics . Illamasqua available at www.occmakeup.com and www.sephora.com . $8-14 For a fiendishly fashionable alternative to clichéd black nail varnish, look no further than toxic green and bruise-purple psychobilly-inspired polish. Apply two coats of a gutsy green shade like Obsessive Compulsive Cosmetics Nail Lacquer in Wasabi alongside a poisonously pretty purple Illamasqua Nail Varnish in Baptiste on alternating fingernails. Seal with a topcoat. Proceed to revel in your glorious mad scientist concocted monster bride manicure unfit for mild mannered mortals.
LIPS fashionable vamp Twilight Venom - DuWop available at www.sephora.com . $16 I’ve remained blissfully disconnected from the mass hysteria generally associated with Twilight, True Blood, and other assorted tards-with-fangs franchises. Despite the fact that my best friend starts off most of her sentences with “OH MY GAWD, guess what RPattz did today?” I’m pretty clueless about keeping up with the Cullens. Quite frankly, I like it that way. Alas, the masochist in me enjoys the cinnamon-y goodness of DuWop’s original Lip Venom stung lips. While I continue being wholly unaffected with the gimmicky “Team Edward” nature of DuWop Twilight Venom, the medical fetishist gore-whore in me rejoiced at the thought of pulling out a tube of lip plumper, which closely resembles a blood vial, out of the depths of my purse. According to the press release, this ruby red stain “captures the blood red lips sported by fashionable vampires”, “Twilight Venom can let you play the part!” While I don’t see myself frequenting local Twilight LARP sessions anytime soon, I’m more than down with the idea of lips that appear to be freshly bitten in that hot post-makeoutwith-a-hot-industrial-boy kind of way. I’ll take that over the cold, clammy flesh of an emo vampire any day. But I get to keep the Lip Venom!
Remember kids: In today’s sinking ship of an economy, November 1st’s “All Halloween Stock Must Go” 50% off sales can seem like a steal. Avoid the temptation of seemingly savvy shopping, by reminding yourself that a train case full of discounted oil-slick-in-a-tube crap that passes for “black lipstick” is less “haute” and more “Hot Topic”. Save your pennies for MAC’s Style Black instead. Your dignity will thank you later.
october 2009 AUXILIARY
E D I TORI AL
reality plus geeking by W. Edward Cook and Jim Cole
Role Playing Games (RPGs) are popularly thought of as escapist fantasy used by those, in most cases socially awkward tweens or teens, who shy away from reality. The images popularized by movies, sitcoms, and certain infamous Saturday Night Live parodies have made participating in role playing games tantamount to social suicide: a wound on the soul that can only be balmed by use of a +3/+3 rod of healing.
Anyway, those days have been gone for over a hundred years or so. Only our eldest grandparents or great-grandparents can remember a time when you were often expected to have a story to tell or a handy supply of riddles when passing the time. Today we can turn on the TV and lull our minds into sophomoric stupefaction, entertainment being at the touch of a button. But it must not be forgotten that story telling and role-playing were the soil that modern entertainment grew from.
For the purposes of this editorial, I’m speaking about role-playing games. Though, it must be said, role-playing itself is a gold mine for fascinating wordsmithing (roleplaying in the bedroom being only a portion of what could be discussed). RPG’s are generally thought of as beginning in their present form in 1974 when Gary Gygax and Dave Arneson published Dungeons & Dragons (the alpha and omega of all geekitude). To play the game, a group of friends would get together and act out a loosely sketched story written by one person, with the others populating that story as characters via improvisation. This brings me to the real point of this article: role-playing games as a social experience.
In my opinion, the worst thing you can really say about role-playing is that it’s too good. And I mean that literally; when done well RPGs can be addictive. When faced with a job that I hated years ago, I would spend hours at work daydreaming about the hydra-headed plans my character and the rest of the group were scheming in order to further their goals (or more frequently just survive till next Sunday), and the powers/ abilities I wanted my character to gain so he could be just a little more badass. This can be a little disconcerting, because at times I would have to remind myself that no matter how cool my character became, I still had a crappy job. RPGs tend to steal away our considerations for the everyday because their most mundane tasks make real life’s day-to-day monotony wither when faced with unbridled numinosity. For instance: it’s hard to remember to pack yourself a lunch for the day when you are trying to figure out how to get your army’s camp followers to stop murdering the soldiers mid-coitus, while maintain a double-time march in a frozen wasteland while also on a personal crusade to slay a dragon who can not only tear you in half, but drain the life out of your body just by breathing on you.
So, RPG’s (with the exception of solitary role playing video games) are a social activity. It brings people together for the sake of entertainment. While it is almost always fantastic to some degree (as it should be…a role playing game where you sit down at H&R Block to pay your taxes would be the saddest thing imaginable), these games are one of the most creative forms of entertainment one can engage in with others. My personal experience has incorporated many months of Sundays spent imagining myself with friends in a dangerous and exciting world. A world populated by monsters and saints, gods and devils, artists and cranks, poets and liars; all the flavors of humanity. It took us away from the excruciating grind of a 9-5 job for a while and gave us a reason to spend time with each other over homemade chili, tequila, and late-night pizza.
All that time spent in your head trying to think through weird little situations that most people just never bump up against is what really contributes to the anti-social image. The cure for that ailment? Greek philosophy: all things in moderation. (All things? That seems excessive…) As long as we remember that the “G” in RPG stands for game, we should be able to avoid having them take over our lives, and they can remain the brain-tearingly awesome form of entertainment that they are. As it may make the old cranium tingle when thinking about dragon-slaying and maidenrescuing, you’re still going to have to find a lunch to eat at 12:00. But the crux of it is, it’s a valid and empowering escape for the social and the creative.
Perhaps the time that emphasizes most the tie to story-telling over a camp fire was years ago in Buffalo during the “October Storm,” which was in itself akin to a role playing game set in a post-apocalyptic future; power was out in many parts of the city for almost a week, and what was once a casual 20 minute stroll became an hour long trek through debris-strewn city streets full to bursting with downed tree limbs and broken bits of urban lawn ornamentation. Those of us from our group who were able to overcome the city’s paralysis made it over to the usual spot and continued our weekly sacrament to the gods of nerd over candlelight. As the afternoon faded to dim twilight, the atmosphere took us back to a time when there was no TV or board games for entertainment, just friends and a warm fire to while away the night.
So the next time you hear someone mention that they play Vampire: The Masquerade or old school DnD, keep in mind that it means they’re the sort of person that likes to keep their entertainment creative and imaginative, and it’s people like them that kept stories alive when it got dark outside and there was just you, your friends, and the fire.
Let us know what you think! We think it is important that alternative culture has a voice on important and current topics. AUXILIARY october 2009
Our editorial section is for your opinions. email : email@example.com 20
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Gotham’s Last Stand : the art, community, and culture of
Last Rites Gallery By Sally Reardon
McMillan (Pepto Dismal). True to Last Rites’ mission statement, the art featured dark, surreal and fantastical visions rendered in a highly detailed way. As before, Last Rites continues to focus on art that is representational/symbolic as well as more realistically rendered than not. While Jeff McMillan’s work may have featured converging skulls and symbols of corporate America (“Another Event in Progress,” “Zuben’s Memorial Barbeque”) each image was exquisitely conveyed, allowing the viewer to take in the message as well as the carefully-honed technique evident in each work. The aptly-named Pepto Dismal showing left me with a vague feeling of queasiness as I acknowledged how ubiquitous mega-corporate culture and corporate logos have become in America, bringing as much in the way of “progress” as serious ethical concerns. Domestic Terror represents the comparatively lighter end of the spectrum—at least at first glance. Where Pepto Dismal is all asphyxiated cheeks and lips, Scott G. Brooks’ Domestic Terror bounds forth in a twisted carnival of color, vibrancy, blank gazes, and juxtaposed imagery. Central to Brooks’ otherwise-diverse subject matter is the juxtaposition of the innocent and the unnerving, whether it is the apocalyptic carnival of amputees (“Battle for Thorazine”) or the freak show-esque family portrait (“In a Family Way”). If the somber colors and foreboding skulls of Pepto Dismal are giant omens, then “Domestic Terror” is the silent assassin, luring me in with whimsical themes and shaking me to consciousness with disquieting details.
Nestled on the fringes of midtown Manhattan, some blocks past Penn Station and steps before the roaring Lincoln Tunnel, there is a humble building on the edge of 33rd Street. From the outside, one could mistake it for any industrial space, loft, or office, unassuming in its slate-gray exterior and cavernous painted walls. However, the curious wanderer will find untold treasures if he ventures up the booming elevator, to the third floor, and into a space that belies all that surrounds it... Stepping into the Last Rites Gallery is akin to a drop of water in the cultural drought of Manhattan. Inside rich reds bathe the visitor; scented smoke pervades the space, and candles suffocating in their own wine-colored wax burn all around. An imposing gate marks off the tattoo studio. Sinister meat hooks loom overhead. The visitor enters into an era where fantasy and history weave together, where iron, blood, and force may have forged the strongholds of nefarious monarchs. Even so, touches of humor and a tongue-in-cheek sentiment permeate the space, even the imposing gate bears a plate declaring, “Thou shall not whine”. Nearby a well-lit and starkly modern art gallery contrasts the Dionysian vision of the reception room. Rich reds give way to simple lighting that highlights the gallery’s current exhibition. Far from appearing disjointed, the paintings echo the mood of the reception room and studios. Despite its impressive ambience, Last Rights would be just another gallery, bar or nightclub with a “gimmick” if not for the people that run it, contribute to it, and frequent it. Visit during one of their crowded opening night receptions. You’ll notice that something more difficult to maintain than ambiance is going on: true collaborative work in progress. All night, multiple artists are seen making their mark on a common canvas, the painting slowly taking shape throughout the course of the evening. Meanwhile, an unusual combination of attendees mingle: fans of Booth’s work, curious residents and passersby, people attending for the first, second, tenth opening and beyond. They are here for many reasons: as fans of the current exhibitors, to socialize, to imbibe the free flowing conversation and alcohol, to take in the entirety of Last Rites Gallery.
Last Rites is much like the space it resides in; art, community, and innovation converge in a gallery that embraces transience and the dark as much as the light and the idealized. One visit to the gallery assured me of its unique point of view and the important work being done here. The second visit, however, cemented my understanding that the core of Last Rites is community, not a flash-in-the-pan foray into public interest in “edgy” or pop-culture art. For some, the critical, stylized, and even grim outlook of dark art may appear to be a fad, defined only by the contrast of the commercialized images that permeates daily life. Others will relish tracking the evolution of new art communities; these places where niche creators digest, interpret and ultimately redefine the line between fine art and art unapologetically announces a perspective, no topic too taboo to be discussed. This is the art that will shape the future; this is Last Rites Gallery.
The September 12th opening of Last Rites marked my second visit to the gallery and my first experience with featured artists Scott G. Brooks (Domestic Terror) and Jeff
[from left to right] Paul Booth, Scott G. Brooks, Jeff McMillan, Andrew Michael Ford
gallery attendees at show opening
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behind the scenes of a shoestring-budget film
by Darren M. Orlowski
majority of the $7,000 budget mainly went to the Canon EOS 5D Mark II Camera. The Canon EOS 5D Mark II is a sharp looking camera for its price. Usually thought of as a still camera, the 5D has a large sensor area that allows the video to be recorded with a shallow depth of field and gives it a “film look”. This is the second feature in a row that I have worked on that used this camera. The rest of the budget went for food, a couple of plane tickets, and a very small amount of sound gear. Either calling in favors or promising people points on the back end financed the rest of the film.
What follows are my experiences on the set of an independent film, Desolation Wilderness. First off, let me say that when I started writing this, I figured that some stories about four guys spending a week and a half in the wilderness filming a movie had to be exciting. Once I started putting these stories on paper, I realized it’s all not so exciting. Don’t get me wrong I love my job as a sound guy. But watching an actor say “You’re not” 40 different ways just isn’t thrilling. Perhaps if my writing skills measured up to Bukowski or Thompson, I could make day-to-day life on the film set interesting. But trust me, the skills I share with those two are definitely not writing.
“Points on the back end” and “deferred payment” are ways of saying: “We can’t pay you right now, but if this film goes big we’ll pay you later.” Accepting gigs on this type of payment is always a gamble, especially if you don’t know the people involved. I took the job because I knew the main guy involved, Derek, was a good guy, and he also promised to feed me while I was working. Since work was slow in L.A., the offering of food made this project very attractive.
Let me give you the exciting and not-so-exciting highlights of what happened on our 13 day excursion and shed some light on the world of no budget/low-budget films. Unless you’re either a part of the filmmaking machine or a massive film buff, you will never see most no-budget or low-budget films. However, you will, every once in a while, hear the success stories. Basically, low-budget encompasses everything up to roughly three million dollars. People like to use phrases like no-budget, micro-budget, and shoestring-budget to label films on the lower tier of the low-budget spectrum.
The main crew of this project included four guys. Besides myself, heading the massive sound department of one, there was also Derek Mungor and Robert Massey, who wrote/directed/produced/starred and filled any other role that needed filling. Ralph Jimenez was brought in, also from L.A., for duties as director of photography and camera operator.
Up until a few years ago, the only low-budget film I can remember knowingly seeing was Clerks, a small film about a guy who worked at a convenience store that was shot for under thirty grand and launched Kevin Smith’s career. Other low-budget success stories include Robert Rodriguez, who started with El Mirachi and went on to do many films including Once Upon a Time in Mexico, and Sam Raimi, whose first film The Evil Dead became a cult classic and who later went on to direct the first three Spiderman movies. Success stories are few and far. And it is amazing how many of these no budget/ low-budget films are being shot every day. Filmmakers primarily make these films to submit them to major independent film festivals like Sundance in hopes of attracting the attention of studio execs for either a distribution contract or recognition of the following bold statement: “I did this for this small amount of money, imagine what I could do with a bigger budget!!” I was recently asked to do production sound on a film titled Desolation Wilderness. It’s a feature length piece that was shot over 13 days in Illinois and Wisconsin. The
AUXILIARY october 2009
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pointing down the side towards the trunk of the car. This was done so that when the characters drove past the accident, it would slowly fade in the distance. All in all, this scene took us close to three hours to shoot. After that, we headed north to Rhinelander, Wisconsin, where the rest of the filming took place. With the difficult shots behind us, the rest of the filming went smoothly. We spent the downtime watching movies like The Shinning and The Thing, great flicks when you’re spending a lot of time in a secluded cabin in the woods. We managed to finish the film with enough time to enjoy some scenic boat rides around the lake, and none of us had to hide any bodies. I spent the trip back to civilization in Derek’s car where we talked about the future of this film. His hopes were high as he told me of his plans for distribution, and, in my honest opinion, even if he doesn’t get the distribution he expected, he still has a great looking film to show off his skills as a writer/director.
“the crew” clockwise from top left Ralph, Derek, Darren, and Robby [upper] Ralph on camera [middle] Darren rigging lighting [lower] the directors, Robby and Derek
We didn’t have a lot of gear to move around. My sound equipment fit in to a small suitcase. The camera and accessories were pretty minimal, and there were only a few lights since we planned to use natural lighting. Basically, we could fit everything into the back of a pickup truck. In an age where everything and everyone is perfectly lit no matter what the situation, there is something to be said for a film using natural light. First off, it’s cheaper. You don’t need the crew and everything else that goes with large lighting packages. Secondly, it gives the film a darker, grittier look. The thick shadows give a hint of lurking doom around every corner. Desolation Wilderness wasn’t shot 100% with natural light, but lighting was used very sparingly. Derek and Robby are big fans of Stanly Kubrick and David Lynch, and their influence is evident throughout the film. Two Lane Black Top, an existential road movie from the early 70s, also influenced the style of a lot of the car scenes. The first location was a gas station pretty close to the Midway airport and was shot without proper authorization. The plan was to hop out of the car, setup, and film a couple scenes as fast as possible before any one could figure out what we were doing. We were hassled by the owner after a bit, but somehow Derek convinced him we were just filming the pay phone and he left us alone. With the gas station scene complete, we drove two hours to a grocery store to film for a few more hours. We finished the day by arriving at Derek’s parents’ house in the Walnut, Illinois. The most intricate scene of the movie was shot on day two. It involved an overturned car complete with screaming victim, eight volunteer fire fighters, a few fire trucks, and a police officer. Since he is from a small town of 1,500, Derek talked the local police and fire crew into helping with the scene for free. The shot is basically this: the two characters are driving at night and pull up to the accident; an officer leans in and they talk for a second; the characters then drive past the accident as the victim is being rescued. We shot it in that order, filming first inside the car as it pulls up to the officer. This took about four takes before everyone was happy. Then, we laid track down alongside the overturned car so the camera could smoothly glide by as the victim was being rescued, to give the impression of a car driving by. After two takes, the directors pulled the track farther back for a wider shot of the firefighters smashing windows and tearing into the car. The last shot of the scene involved the camera being mounted to the front passenger side of the characters’ car 23
october 2009 AUXILIARY
film primer :
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unusual children’s films
In an era where all too often the television has become both a companion and babysitter for children, there is a huge market to be taken advantage of in the genre of kid’s films. But for every bad direct-to-video Disney sequel with their sickeningly sweet musical numbers and celebrity voice talent, there are an equal number of films that can entertain you as well as the kids, with the added bonus of possibly messing your kids up for life.
by Luke Copping
The Adventures of Mark Twain 1986 directed by : Will Vinton A stop motion adventure culled from various pieces by Mark Twain. The film has achieved near cult status due to one short vignette that is often omitted from broadcast versions of the film. In it Twain drops three children off for a short lesson about the purpose and nature of humanity with an angel named satan. In a span of less than four minutes the film moves from intelligent and lighthearted discourse to scenes of supernatural genocide and ends in a moment of abject philosophical horror.
The Peanut Butter Solution 1985 directed by : Michael Rubbo A little known film outside of its native Canada, this utterly strange movie concerns a boy whose hair falls out due to fright, and his attempts to grow it back with a magical peanut butter based formula. It sounds pretty standard and uneventful, until you throw in two factors. A fascist art teacher who steaks children’s hair to make paintbrushes, and a scene in which one of the main character’s friends uses the formula to help him grow hair... down there.
Grave of the Fireflies 1988 directed by : Isao Takahata Some films are on this list because of their bizarre or awkward qualities, Grave of the Fireflies is here because this film is presented in such an urgent and dead serious manner. This tale of two Japanese siblings near the end of World War II is one of the most powerful anti-war films ever made. Capable of reducing children and adults alike to tears.
The Great Yokai War 2005 directed by : Takashi Miike Some would say that Takashi Miike, director of Visitor Q and Audition is possibly the last person who should ever direct a children’s film. But The Great Yokai War is a fun and endearing if not slightly demented kid’s film. The strangest aspect of the film would have to be the strange leaps in character design back and forth from almost Muppet like silliness to creatures that rival the creepiness factor of a lot of the better J-Horror titles.
Coraline 2009 directed by : Henry Selick Many children dream of running off to a fantasy world where everything is better and more fun, where they can stay up late, meet magical characters, and escape the tedium and hum drum of their every day lives. Very few of these fantasy worlds have the pre-requisite that in order to stay in it and play, one must remove their own eyes and sew on buttons in their place. Despite the great production and story, this singular notion twists this Neil Gaiman penned tale into one of the single more disturbing concepts in children’s movies to date.
Return to Oz 1985 directed by : Walter Murch The less beloved sequel to The Wizard of Oz stars a very young Fairuza Balk. A departure from the singing and dancing of the previous film installment of the OZ series, Return to Oz features demented bike men, a villainess with a penchant for replacing her own head from a large gallery of options, a clockwork soldier, and perhaps strangest of all, a patchwork being made of a bed and a decapitated moose.
Adventures of Baron Munchausen 1988 directed by : Terry Gilliam Terry Gilliam is a madman, this is an accepted fact, and we encourage him in this so long as he keeps creating films that are utter departures from the norm. Baron Munchausen, as well as Time Bandits, are his forays into the genres of kid’s films. I am sure it goes without saying, but this film is as twisted and strange as they come while at the same time being totally lighthearted. John Neville leads a fantastic ensemble cast and chews Gilliam’s beautifully designed scenery in one of the best and most absurd movies for children ever made.
Watership Down 1978 directed by : Martin Rosen Based on Richard Adams beloved novel, Watership Down will entertain children with adventure, but pushes the story a little too far with the gory scenes of rabbit on rabbit combat. Live action war films and some horror movies will have a hard time matching the levels of visceral violence in this animated classic. Spirited Away 2001 directed by : Hayao Miyazaki An absolutely beautiful and well-made film beloved by people of all ages that is still chock full of strangeness and wonder. A scene of a little girl discovering her parents being transformed into pigs is off putting enough, but it is No Face that steals the show. A wraith who haunts the bathhouse that is the setting of most of the film, No Face alternates from melancholy shadow of existence to terrifyingly obsessive monster and back again during the course of the story, yet still somehow manages to be absolutely off putting in all incarnations.
AUXILIARY october 2009
The Garbage Pail Kids Movie 1987 directed by : Rodney Amateau I would love to have sat in on the development of this once terribly difficult to find film. How on earth did the producers go from the gross out trading card series that I was obsessed with as a child in the 80s to a film that was just so strange, surreal, and badly made that naturally it became a cult obsession. No description of this film would do it justice, it just needs to be seen to understand how horrible and fun it is.
LI FESTY LE
by Vanity Kills
I have been secretly counting down days, hours, and minutes until tonight’s fabulous excursion to Sanctum. Well, as fabulous as an outing to a dive bar in the midst of the ghetto can be. Normally, I don’t get THIS psyched to attend our weekly drama and watered-down, booze filled goth night; but as you have probably guessed, the fact that Eli will accompany me has SOMETHING to do with the enthusiasm. I began mentally dissecting the contents of my closet the millisecond Eli suggested we go clubbing! Matter of factly, the initial thought process which succeeded his brilliant plan to invade the dance floor and cause all the poorly outfitted losers to feel bad about themselves did not even remotely veer in the direction of, “I wonder what my boyfriend Shayne would think of all this?” It was more along the lines of, “What the hell am I going to wear?” Naturally, such concerns caused me to panic and gut the contents of my wardrobe the minute I got home from Lord of the Wings this past Monday night. Yes, I officially lost it and actually tried on every last article of clothing I owned in order to concoct the ultimate “Knock-Eli-Dead-The-SecondI-Open-His-Car-Door” ensemble. After multiple “OH MY GOD THOUSANDS OF DOLLARS WORTH OF CRAP AND YET I STILL HAVE NOTHING TO WEAR” episodes I finally settled on something I deemed worthy of the occasion. I opted for a “leaves just enough to the imagination” black latex mermaid skirt with contrasting lavender lace accents paired with a matching puff sleeve top. Surely I will be boiled alive come 3:00 AM, but at least I’ll look stunning. Not to mention the fact that Eli will most probably appreciate my efforts. Shayne is just as likely to ignore me in a thousand dollars worth of latex as he is in an ancient Siouxsie shirt I wear to bed. Which is precisely why I felt zero remorse or sympathy for my inattentive cold-hearted jerk of a boyfriend. At this given point in time Shayne simply ceased to exist in my Eli engrossed brain. Why should I even give Shayne the time of day anyway? Would he take me to Sanctum in Eli’s place? Clearly the answer was no. Shayne Hart came in two flavors: working and being the lust object of the local lolitas. He’d do the 9 to 5 thing, cleaning up spyware-infected computers and then moonlight as a tattoo artist. The second gig yielded him many barely legal groupies, who would continuously shoot evil looks my way at Sanctum. I rolled my eyes, never ceasing to wonder exactly why these teenybopper tarts seemed to think that he’s the second coming of Ogre (as he’d often describe himself). Then I remembered that they were literally a week past the age of consent. Perhaps to an 18 year old, someone like Shayne was god. To his own girlfriend, he was just some douche who would come home at 2 AM, brag a bout how many chicks, with too much makeup and not enough clothes on, informed him of his hotness on any given day and then proceed to pass out. Being ogled by prosti-tots at his unnecessary second job left no time to take his woman to the club on Friday. This left a void in my life. A void I was more than happy to fill with Eli quality time. The extended bout of boyfriend bitterness was abruptly interrupted by the sound of an incoming text message. My delectable distraction, Mr. Erickson himself, just pulled up in front of my place. I doused myself with enough perfume to qualify as a chemical weapon and started my wobbly journey toward
his Wumpscut sticker covered Pontiac G5 in my torturous eight inch spiked stripper heels. While I wasn’t very mobile I was aware that my drool-inspiring getup would be the cause of one very dramatic entrance. Minor league matters, such as the ability to move, worried me none. I’m always more than willing to sacrifice some comfort in order to compel a cute boy’s jaw to hit the floor. Oh, the things I’ll do for male adulation! I graciously accepted the flood of flattery Eli lavished me with upon laying eyes on my fetish queen attire and carefully lowered myself onto the passenger seat of his car. Latex and heels require some careful maneuvering indeed! And so, the princess departed for the ball without managing to lose her shoe or twisting her ankle within the first five minutes of leaving her humble abode. I took that as an omen that we’re off to a good start. Since weekly trips to Sanctum involve driving through the hood for at least 10 minutes, it is customary for the passenger to play Ipod Commando. A sacred ritual of goth night club goers which consists of finding the most obnoxious Terror EBM, playing it at maximum volume and rolling down all car windows. I settled on the goblin-like vocal styling of Psyclon Nine this fine evening; a choice which was immediately met with a nod of approval from Eli. And so “As You Sleep” quickly drowned out the sounds of Ice Cube we were previously treated to courtesy of the vehicle next to us. Three songs later, El Basurero, a tiny Mexican watering hole, which hosted Sanctum on Friday nights welcomed us in its entire destitute splendor. Sandwiched between a Dollar Tree and a liquor store, it truly epitomized all things classy and tasteful. From it’s constantly out of order toilets, the hookers that hung out outside, and the aging swingers in cheap Leg Avenue PVC that patronized the establishment itself, the joint seemed to reach a new low on a weekly basis. But it’s a place my friends and I called home. We made our way past a Hot Topic clad couple pushing third base in the middle of the entrance and joined Justine who held fort at the bar. Already on her third drink, she bought a round of red devils to kick off the night. The second I finished the last of my beverage Cassy appeared and demanded that we celebrate her most recent breakup with tequila. Three shots later, my head began to spin violently and my liver began to sing “La Cucaracha”. As DJ Ironic Moustache Ride played “Rose Colored Skies” by SITD, Justine and Cassy hurried to dance while Eli and I chose to publicly display our affection to all. A tap on the shoulder disrupted my lip locking bliss.
Auxiliaryâ€™s playful take on the sexy centerfold pin up. Flip the page, cut out, and tac on your wall!
photographer Steve Prue hair and makeup SharonTK
Auxiliary Magazine Presents
SHARON TK featuring fashion by New York Couture AUXILIARY october 2009
name : Sharon TK birthday : that’s for me to know and you to find out ;-) birthplace : Syracuse, NY. gangsta! eye color : light blue hair color : red turn-ons : animal lovers turn-offs : ignorance why do you model? : It’s the only artistic thing I’m any good at. It’s a release in a way for me. how did you get into modeling? : I was asked by a friend to be in the 2008 Seul Contre Tous Calendar shot by the fabulous Dale May. Then I discovered the wonderful world of Model Mayhem. The rest is history! favorite musical artist : Depeche Mode favorite movie : too many to list favorite tv show : at the moment I’d have to say Project Runway favorite book : all the Twilight books, I’m an addict favorite cocktail : extra dirty martini’s! favorite color : black, not a color but a hue, I know! favorite tattoo : my leopard spots favorite article of clothing : A Lip Service winter jacket I have worn for three seasons now, even though the pockets are ripped out. favorite fashion designer : Betsey Johnson favorite fashion style : vintage mixed with a punk rock edge favorite star/icon : Gwen Stefani favorite outdoor activity : walks with hubbie and dogs at the beach favorite indoor activity : watching a good movie with friends favorite club : QXT’s in Newark, NJ anything you’d like to say to our readers? : Try going vegetarian for yourself, the animals, and the planet! Never buy puppies from a pet store, 99% come from horrible puppymills, your money just goes back to help continue this horrible practice! Rescue a forever friend from your local shelter or www.petfinder.com!
outfit by New York Couture ring and necklace by RockLove Jewelry october 2009 AUXILIARY
SHARON TK in New York Couture
by Aaron Andrews
Daniel Ash, reluctant goth icon, motorcycle enthusiast, DJ, and man of fashion, certainly has an infamous name and reputation in alternative music. The recent release of a Love and Rockets tribute album is evidence of that. Ash started out playing in cover bands with the Haskins brothers before all three joined with acquaintance Peter Murphy to form Bauhaus. At the end of that iconic band, he went on to front Tones on Tail and its follow up Love and Rockets with one and then both of the Haskins brothers. It’s an impressive list of bands and an impressive body of work. Despite having a ton to get a swelled head about, Daniel Ash has to be one of the most pleasant people I’ve ever talked to. He’s forthcoming, friendly and gracious. Talking to him over the phone was like chatting with a new friend, and he made it seem like he’d love to talk about music or motorcycles whether there was a project to promote or not.
are awful,” he answered. “I guess I liked Pink Floyd’s Dark Side of The Moon as a concept album; it was very good. But like Yes albums, they’re just awful.” Resistant at first, he explained that he’s come to see the digital music revolution as an exciting turn for the better. Ash mentions a love of the “perfect three minute pop song” a few times, and the new tracks are definitely just that: five three-minute tracks that are all distinctly his, some sexy and quiet with a few guitar driven rock songs. He also has an interest in branching out to film, an avenue that seems almost inevitable considering the mood and atmosphere he’s always managed to instill into his guitar sound. Also because for me and my friends our first ideas of what Daniel and his Bauhaus bandmates looked like came from the cameo in 1983’s The Hunger. He contributed guitar parts for several songs in the recent film Repo! The Genetic Opera adding to a list of well-known contributors. This follows up his television experience with 2003’s Keen Eddy, an action comedy that saw one season altogether split between Fox and Bravo. Ash is credited with a few songs for the series on IMDB but when talking suggested he’d written or co-written much more. He seemed very hopeful to branch further into scoring in the future and enthused about a potential project, “with motorcycles coming up that I’m interested in working on, I can’t talk about it much, but I’m hoping it comes my way.”
However, he is currently doing press for New Tales to Tell the aforementioned tribute album, put together by friend Christopher “The Minister”. Christopher is a DJ for Sirius XM radio, a fact that escaped me for a few seconds as Daniel repeated over and over to me that he was a “serious” DJ and I thought, “of course, why do it if you’re not serious?” Of course, it dawned on me what he meant and I, still kind of shy, meekly suggested, “the satellite?” With the misunderstanding resolved, we moved on to the album itself that Ash had no hand in but evidently his friend The Minister has made a pet project.
Motorcycles are not something unfamiliar to him. He’s an incredible lover of British and American bikes, Nortons and Triumphs from the British bike world, and he complemented America on its Harley. From there we struck off on a long tangent on Triumph when I mentioned some childhood memories of my father’s Bonneville. He lit up at the mention of it and took the opportunity to recommend I get myself to a Triumph dealer to see all the newest models. Clearly this was the man’s other love, maybe even his first love.
There are quite a few different artists represented, including fantastic names like The Flaming Lips, Frank Black, and Maynard James Keenan’s Puscifer. Ash seemed genuinely pleased to have Black as a fan, and, when asked to pick a favorite, he expressed his preference for Dubfire’s version of “I Feel Speed”. While he had quite a few nice things to say about contributors, he seemed a little disappointed that Tom Jones didn’t appear with a cover of “So Alive”. The Welshman played the song in his Vegas show and Ash “kept hearing his version was coming out, but it didn’t make it.”
There is something he sees as more of a hobby though: his DJing career (although, after a quick reflection he decides it is more than just a hobby as, “they are paying gigs.”) When discussing his DJing gigs, it becomes very evident that Ash is interested in other music than alternative rock saying, “I love 70s disco, I think it’s just some of the greatest music.” He also mentions Deep Dish and its side project Dubfire again as personal favorites as well as taking a liking to The Ting Tings, “an excellent British pop band.” His DJing sessions seem to be all about his own personal enjoyment as he has some trouble picking out any more than a few specific artists or sounds he likes just saying, “I just play what I like and it’s a lot of fun. It’s very different than performing live, less pressure and the feedback is instant.” The one thing he’s quite sure about not playing is goth music, “I can’t stand it really. I know it sounds funny since I was in Bauhaus but really we were an art band not a goth band.”
Daniel Ash isn’t really the kind of person to sit around waiting to be adored and have his songs covered. He’s still interested in making his own music. In fact, I happened to call on one of the days that final mastering was going on for an EP’s worth of new material to be sold on iTunes. Previews are available on his Myspace page: www. myspace.com/therealdanielash. The press notes I’d received said this EP is due in the fall to be followed by a full length in the new year, a fact Mr. Ash corrected, “No full length. The full length album is really kind of dead.” I was surprised to hear an artist who’s come up through years of making albums to declare them obsolete and not even be wistful about it. “What about the concept album?” I asked. “Concept albums
AUXILIARY october 2009
“I think the full length is kind of dead, really I like the perfect three minute pop song.” The legacy of Bauhaus is obviously not lost on him and I wanted to find out more about the Love and Rockets moments and feelings. When asked what high points stood out in his memory in regards to the Love and Rockets, he picked a favorite memory, “being number three on the American charts, with Prince at number one and Madonna at number two. We thought we’d be starting all over in America and we were big, playing huge shows.” True to his love of the perfect pop song, he picked “So Alive” and “Ball of Confusion” as stand out tracks for the band. With recent Bauhaus and Love and Rockets reunions still in close memory I wondered if he thought them successful. After a pause he went on, “I think they were very successful. I mean, we toured with Nine Inch Nails and sold out 29 shows. So yeah, that’s successful. It’s odd doing that, though, especially with Bauhaus because the songs are 30 years old.” A potential Tones on Tail reunion is not looking like it’s on the horizon. But he did say they’d re-recorded “Go!” and marveled at the enormous success that it’s had being used everywhere in both commercials and films. Looking through pictures of his performances it’s obvious Daniel Ash has always been a fashion conscious man, a fact he didn’t shy away from when asked if fashion or visual appeal matter to music. “It does to me,” he said. “You have to be doing something up there. A lot of bands show up in jeans and tee shirts like the 60s, like hippies you know?” His approach to fashion has changed over the years, “just look at the album covers and see that,” but its importance hasn’t. He emphasized that being involved in the visual aspect of the show and looking the part is essential. Over 30 years after Bauhaus had its beginnings, Daniel Ash seems to be very content with the path he’s walked. He’s contributed to an excellent sum of music and strived to find originality and new sounds at every opportunity. In all this he’s maintained a jovial attitude and friendly demeanor. The time I spent talking with him felt more like catching up with an old friend than talking to one of my musical heroes. Thanking him for his time he shrugged it off as if the pleasure was equally his and thanked me in return.
photo by Chris Jensen 31
october 2009 AUXILIARY
Clan of Xymox - In Love We Trust
released by Metropolis on 18 August 2009 data : 11th album . 10 tracks . 48:33 run time . www.clanofxymox.com reviewed by : Aaron Andrews genre : darkwave Clan of Xymox have been making music for 25 years under the current name and the shortened version, Xymox. Fronted by the lone remaining founding member, Dutchman Ronny Moorings, through its entirety the band has explored different styles, record labels and, of course, identities. In Love We Trust is their latest release on the band’s current label Metropolis. In Love We Trust is a little different for me as the releases I’m most familiar with are Clan of Xymox and Medusa. I’ve been pleased by this release, and, if they sound like this, then I’m regretting missing out on their Metropolis era releases. This album is composed with a heavy emphasis on the synths and singer/band leader Ronny Moorings’ vocals. It’s the best of both Xymox worlds: the moody atmosphere of the early works and the solid understanding of the dance hook and pop song structure found later. Moorings vocals are catchy and enjoyable, not earth shattering but well crafted in a tight rhyme structure that never seems clumsy. The only thing I’m cranky about
is that in this release Moorings uses a deeper vocal style that is more than a little reminiscent of Andrew Eldritch. However, he sells it well, and, after a few songs, I’d almost forgotten it entirely. The album has quite a few strong points, starting out strong with the catchy single “Emily” (one of three songs named after women in the band’s tradition). “Morning Glow” has a guitar part reminiscent of New Order, and it helps the song along very well; it’s one of my favorites. “Love Got Lost” is notable for its heavy plodding rhythm and excellent synth hook. “Home Sweet Home” has an excellent hook as well that manages to dig into my mind as deeply as the band’s classic “A Day.” I looked forward over and over to the last batch of songs on this album. All things considered, I’m never going to pick this album over classic Clan of Xymox but I think it is definitely above average, and it’s leaps and bounds above lots of other contemporary goth/darkwave releases. I’d recommend checking into it if this band ever tickled your fancy. It’s exciting to hear an artist after a decade and half of steady production. recommended tracks : Emily, Morning Glow, Home Sweet Home if you like you may like : The Sisters of Mercy, The Cure, Cruxshadows grade : overall 6 - music 6 - lyrics 6 - recording quality 7
The Orb - Baghdad Batteries (Orbsessions Volume III) released by Malicious Damage on 7 September 2009 data : 9th album . 11 tracks . 53:33 run time . www.theorb.com
styles of theme. A house theme permeates throughout “Styrofoam Meltdown” and other tracks further on (“Dolly Unit” and “Super Soakers” for instance) but appears to be merely an afterthought as we move along to more ethereal pieces in “Chocolate Fingers,” “Raven’s Reprise” and the album’s title track. One might think these drum lines were merely what was found in the studio that day along some ancient vinyl to be sampled and processed. The pieces of soundtrack within this album however are so cohesive and so complex that it conjures visions of Pink Floyd, Brian Eno, or Shpongle at the controls. To say that is high praise for the duo would be an understatement, however this is also how The Orb has been operating since 1988. Considering their 21-year career, it is thrilling to hear that these legends of chill out rooms have not compromised their style in the least, and I strongly recommend this album to those looking for something off the dance floor. recommended tracks : Baghdad Batteries, Super Soakers if you like you may like : Autechre, Underworld grade : overall 9 - music 9 - recording quality 10
reviewed by : Alex Kourelis genre : ambient, ambient house The Orb has once again released a stunning collection of ambient house experiments, this time entitled Baghdad Batteries. For the uninitiated, The Orb at the surface would seem to be cinematic and soundtrackish, perhaps some lighthearted or pleasant melodies to have on in a background setting. Those familiar with the British duo, however, have a knowledge this group’s music can hook a listener in very quickly. In this collection of “Orbsessions” longtime Orb headman Dr. Alex Paterson (actually London native Duncan Robert Alex Paterson) and partner Thomas Fehlman bring their unique styles of ambience and signature ears for experimentation to complete another masterwork worthy of the fabled name under which they work. Gone of course are the days of eighteen minute tracks The Orb once released from prior albums (Orbvs Terrarvm and Adventures Beyond the Ultraworld, for example) however remaining still is the lifeblood of those prior works. As Baghdad Batteries opens we are treated to two different
AUXILIARY october 2009
A Place To Bury Strangers - Exploding Headreleased by released by Mute on 6 October 2009 data : 2nd album . 10 tracks . www.aplacetoburystrangers.com
reviewed by : Paul Morin genre : post-punk, shoegaze, psychedelic Like My Bloody Valentine? Like Big Black? The Jesus and Mary Chain and Joy Division? Yes, this is the kind of the moment where your chocolate has entered my peanut butter (or viceversa). Opener “It Is Nothing” sounds like a lost track from Isn’t Anything, complete with guitars that bend and blur into every chord change. “In Your Heart” sets a laid-back vocal delivery against sudden bursts of guitar noise straight out of the big book of Lee Ranaldo and Thurston Moore, and “Exploding Heart” rests somewhere between The Cure’s “Primary” and “Accuracy.” Hints of the obscure, darker side of alternative (particularly the criminally underrated Red Lorry Yellow Lorry) also come to mind. But while A Place to Bury Strangers may wear their influences proudly on their sleeves, they more than make up for any similarities with a fistful of great songs punched right
through the speakers with a conviction and ferocity that puts their peers to shame. The bass and guitars are cranked into the red, with the volume allowed to peak at such a high level that it often distorts the entire mix, giving an unsettling howl and buzz like a prop-plane taking off in your living room. The drums, cold and robotic, pound and thunder away with the metronome set to warp speed. Touted by their label and critics as louder than hell, they deliver their roller-coaster-off-the-rails sound with bitter conviction and a deafening fury, allowing blasts of distortion, feedback, scrapes and screeches to pierce your eardrums at every turn while maintaining a terse pop structure and a vocal calm that keeps the band centered like an eye of a storm. If you’re still wondering what ever happened to your rock and roll, APTBS seem to have found the answer. recommended tracks : Ego Death, In Your Heart, Exploding Head if you like you may like : BRMC, Spaceman 3, DFA1979 grade : overall 9 - music 9 - lyrics 8 - recording quality 9
this issue’s FREE MUSIC PICK Ad Noiseam Label Compilation Summer 2009
Access to Arasaka - Oppidan
reviewed by : Alex Kourelis genre : noise, distorted dubstep, cinematic, downtempo, jazz, breakbeat With a reputation for being a distorted noise and breaks label, Ad Noiseam’s Summer 2009 Label Compilation blends many of their artists together with choice cuts covering an alarmingly vast array of genres. Unfortunately for this reviewer, it stretched a bit too far for my liking. Beginning with an entirely unexpected twist, the first track on the compilation, “Embers,” is by The Kilimanjaro Darkjazz Ensemble. If you enjoy drudging, meandering goth tunes with trumpets, you’ll probably like this one. For me, it was 4m30s of my life I’ll never get back and was a signal this could be a really bad review. I was thankful for the pleasant surprises later on in the comp however; in fact, the second track “Borderlines” by Detritus gives a cinematic break beat pulse to it, and the follow-up was the hard-hitting tune “The Traveller” by DJ Hidden featuring an unmistakable ambience and the professional polish I was looking for from the start. Further on in the compilation, we’re treated to more inventive dubstep breaks and sampling by Mothboy on the track “Beg”; true industrial clanging with Math Head’s “Terror Inc” and full on gabber thrown together by The Teknoist’s “Full Metal Teknoist”. While variation of genres may seem like a great idea to bring in a fresh audience with a something-for-everyone approach, this compilation is an example of near schizophrenia. It’s just way too much for me to want to hear it twice. There are examples of drum n’ bass, cinematic alt-rock pieces like Larvae’s track “Turning Around,” goth jazz, dub step, powernoise, heavily distorted noise and yes, some kind of hardcore rap. It gave me a headache. Badly. As a whole, this compilation doesn’t work, but pick it apart and you will find gems on it. It is free, so you won’t break the bank, and, who knows, maybe you will find something new to like. recommended tracks : The Traveller, Borderlines grade : overall 4 - music 7 - recording quality 8
reviewed by : Alex Kourelis genre : IDM Entering the fray with a debut release on both Spectraliquid and Tympanik Audio, Access to Arasaka brings forth compelling ambience and a feeling of mystery with the album Oppidan. Truly, after reading the press sheet, artist bio, and doing a bit of online investigating, I can only compare what I’m hearing to something I would imagine as a soundtrack to a William Gibson or Bruce Sterling cyberpunk work. Access to Arasaka describes itself as a bit of a cliché: an artificial intelligence that became self-aware and began studying human nature and whatnot. My apprehension after reading that was lost shortly after I heard the first few seconds of the album. ATA brings with it/him a full toolbox of impressive hacked glitch, IDM stutter beats, and incredible mood. Ticks, buzzes, and degraded sounds are rife within Oppidan and serve well to the daunting technical aspect and attention to detail the artist has given this work. Too often however it drops into a formulaic pattern where ambience is not left alone long enough to be digested, and the artist simply must insert a millisecond-length loop buzzing noise because there hasn’t been one in five seconds. It’s unfortunately a pattern many artists within this genre are falling into. That being said. if Neuromancer were ever to be made into a film and I were the director, Oppidan would be the soundtrack I’d choose in a heartbeat. Arrangements like “Monoscan” and “Parisville” are so heavy and suggestive that you can fully immerse yourself in daydreams of Neo Tokyo in a rainstorm or the sky painted in a color of television tuned to a dead channel. Oppidan is a terrific first effort for an artist of this genre, and I look forward to hearing more Access to Arasaka in the future. recommended tracks : Monscan, Waiting War if you like you may like : Telefon Tel Aviv, Tapage grade : overall 8 - music 8 - recording quality 10
released by Ad Noiseam in August 2009 data : 15 tracks . 72:42 run time . www.adnoiseam.net
released by Spectraliquid and Tympanik Audio data : 1st album . 17 tracks . 70:15 run time . www.accesstoarasaka.com
october 2009 AUXILIARY
Displacer - X Was Never Like This...
released by Tympanik Audio on 8 September 2009 data : 5th album . 14 tracks . 66:44 run time . www.dsplcr.com
Like This...” or the sad reminders of the end in “Elbows Bent at Right Angles (Instrumental)”. The vocal contribution of Victoria Lloyd cannot be understated, especially the excellent version of “Elbows Bent at Right Angles” she sings over. Her voice adds a sincerity to the song that makes it the best of the three versions. The original compositions sometimes reminded me of albums like Haujobb’s Ninetynine and UNKLE’s Psyence Fiction, both great works of mood and strong feeling. The half and half format is gratifying for being able hear the original compositions followed almost immediately by the remix. These mixes are excellent; the exceptional ones in my mind are by Thibideau, Myer and Keef Baker with a nod to Famine as well. All are excellent, and the personalities gathered up to contribute are each unique and play with a different angle of Displacer’s original moods. recommended tracks : Elbows Bent at Right Angles (w/ Victoria Lloyd), X Was Never Like This..., Windmill, Never Compromise (Resonant Club Mix) if you like you may like : Detritus, Architect, Xingu Hill, UNKLE grade : overall 8 - music 8 - lyrics 7 - recording quality 7
reviewed by : Aaron Andrews genre : IDM Hailing from Toronto, Ontario, Displacer is the audio project of artist/musician Michael Morton. X Was Never Like This... is the second release on Tympanik Audio. The cover art (by Crime League, a Displacer alter ego) is a collage-like composition with a dirty, gritty grind house feel. The bright red is both lusty and violent, with the islands of light blue type a very welcome resting place for your eyes. It matches the mood of the title track and is somewhat disturbing to look at in a detached cartoon way. The album contains about half original tracks (featuring contributions by Victoria Lloyd and Broken Fabiola) and the other half remixes by talent like Mark Thibideau, Daniel Myer, Keef Baker, Famine, Lucidstatic, and Marching Dynamics. The songs are pretty, endearing, and often melancholy. They’re written with strong bass, engaging synth parts, and subtle guitar overlays. Samples add to the moody feel whether it’s the chattering confusion of “X Was Never
Atlas Sound - Logos
16Volt - AmericanPornSongs
reviewed by : Paul Morin genre : indie, experimental Bradford Cox, better known as the front man for indie art-rockers Deerhunter, returns for his second solo effort under the name Atlas Sound. Let’s get this out of the way right away: This album screams: “Take drugs and listen to me.” Just forget about hitting the bong or rolling a dollar bill. Run straight for the whipped cream canister or your mom’s anti-depressants instead. With the opening track, “The Light That Failed”, the listener is dropped into a world of peculiar sounds bathed in reverb and delay with vocals wandering lazily around the soundscape. There is no building action or warning about it; you just step into Cox’s blissed-out world staring at clouds and walking on rainbows. The mix is somewhere between Brian Wilson, Mercury Rev, and that guy clapping and singing to no one in particular at the subway station. It’s deep, it’s weird, and it’s out there. The songs rely on samples of whatever Cox found around the house (acoustic guitars, bright keys, and simple percussion instruments or drum machine loops make up the bulk of the structure). The samples are repeated and thrown into a blender to keep the album in a narcotic haze. Two highlights come from collaborations with Noah Lennox (aka Panda Bear) on “Walkabout” and Stereolab vocalist Laetitia Sadier on “Quick Canal”. Both bear the stamp of their respective main projects. “Walkabout” sounds like an outtake from Merriweather Post Pavillion. “Quick Canal” spirals out for over eight minutes in a Krautrock-workout of guitars blasting into the stratosphere, an insistent rhythmic figure and Sadier’s ethereal lilting. The end result is a sonic place far away from this world: a music of dreams and drugs as only Cox’s wild imagination can express it. recommended tracks : Walkabout, Quick Canal if you like you may like : Broadcast, Animal Collective, The Beach Boys grade : overall 7 - music 7 - lyrics 7 - recording quality 7
reviewed by : Mike Kieffer genre : industrial rock When 16Volt founder Eric Powell returned from his seven year hiatus in 2007 with the album FullBlackHabit, he showed the scene that 16Volt wasn’t going to be a fading memory from the 90s. FullBlackHabit was, in my opinion, one of the best albums of 2007, and now in 2009 he has smacked us in the face again. The new album AmericanPornSongs is harder, stronger, heavier, and more aggressive then a raging bore on amphetamines. Along for the ride is a who’s who of industrial rockers including full time member Michael Peoples, Steve White, and Jason Bazinet. You will also recognize names of the single track-contributing artists as well, but name-dropping isn’t needed to help this album along. The album starts off strong with the song “Alkali”, which lays the pattern of killer guitar riffs and relentless electronic percussions overlaid with Powell’s stellar vocals and infectious lyrics. The song “Enjoy The Pain” brings the hard grinding industrial song to the plate, raising the aggression meter to 11, and makes me want to punch my girlfriend in the face. This album doesn’t let up either, one song after the other just pummels you into a bloody pulp. In the end the songwriting and production puts this head and shoulders above most industrial rock out there today. This album is solid through and through and could be what is needed to spark a stronger resurgence in industrial rock, a genre that seems to have lingered in the shadows since the height of popularity in the mid 90s. recommended tracks : Enjoy The Pain, Useless People, With Fire And Burning if you like you may like : We Got This Far, Mankind Is Obsolete grade : overall 9 - music 9 - lyrics 9 - recording quality 10
released by Kranky on 20 October 2009 data : 2nd album . 11 tracks . 43:47 run time . www.myspace.com/bradfordcox
AUXILIARY october 2009
released by Metropolis on 8 September 2009 data : 6th album . 15 tracks . 55:04 run time . www.16volt.com
guest music review
Rachel Haywire Rachel Haywire is a reality terrorist from the metaphysical gutters of post-apocalyptic hell. Known not only for her electro-punk project Experiment Haywire, she is also in command of her record label machineKUNT, which focuses on promoting outspoken women in the darker subcultures. In addition to those fulltime projects, she also finds time to be a writer, director, model, and social activist. Be sure to check out her sites thehaywire.net and machinekunt.com
Angelspit - Hideous and Perfect
released by Metropolis Records on 8 September 2009 data : 3rd album . 12 tracks . 47:20 run time . www.angelspit.net genre : electro While Angelspit’s third album Hideous and Perfect keeps their trademark style, it also moves forward and takes a lot more risks than their last release, Blood Death Ivory. With witty inyour-face vocals mixed with distorted industrial guitars and powerful beats, this duo, Amelia and Zoog, knows how to kick your social and musical conditioning in the ass. The track “Fink” tells a cyberpunk tale and it is sure to become a huge club hit with its solid composition and lyrics. “Making Money” stands out because Amelia’s vocals alternate between her signature spoken word and distorted singing that blends oddly yet perfectly. “Princess Chaos” is the best song on the album; it shows that Angelspit have truly evolved. Here Amelia almost sounds like she is performing an electronic opera. This song showcases the best elements of Angelspit, and it also manages to introduce us to something completely new. “Sleep Now” is a great anthem of political decadence, the sound design is particularly innovative, it is Zoog at his best. “Channel Hell” is a public service announcement that wakes you up from your stupor while you are still able to party and have a great time. This album is not entirely flawless. “Let Them Eat Distortion” and “Fuck The Revolution” are too self-referential and predictable. I’m not sure “On Earth” fits the album, though it will definitely expose their avant-garde side to listeners. Overall, the track order could flow a little better. Yet, as a whole, Hideous and Perfect takes many risks. It proves that Angelspit can stay true to their music without putting themselves in a box. recommended tracks : Fink, Princess Chaos, Channel Hell if you like you may like : Chiasm, Revolution State, Azida, Lady Mystery grade : overall 9 - music 8 - lyrics 9 - recording quality 8
Psyclon Nine - We The Fallen
released by Metropolis on 8 September 2009 data : 4th album . 12 tracks . 52:34 run time . www.psyclonnine.com genre : industrial metal I wasn’t sure what I was expecting to hear from the latest Psyclon Nine release. I must say that I was pleasantly surprised. We The Fallen is not a club-friendly album meant to please the dance floor or even a simplistic industrial metal rampage. Instead, it is a highly complex fourth album that redefines their sound. The title track “We The Fallen” immediately hits us with aggression and power while the synth lines here are especially moving. “Thy Serpent Tongue” is one of the most hard-hitting tracks on this album, and Psyclon Nine manages to alternate eerie and unexpected sounds with intense and raw emotion throughout. The track “Suicide Note Lullaby” is a particularly beautiful and captivating piece of storytelling. Marshall has not changed his vocal style very much. What has changed here is the sound of Psyclon Nine, and I am very happy to see them moving in this new direction. It is obvious that they are now creating exactly what they want. The results are definitely worth checking out. It’s the sort of evolution that keeps us happy as music listeners who are not into frame and formula but rather mature and experimental innovation. recommended tracks : The Serpent Tongue, Widowmaker, Suicide Not Lullaby if you like you may like : Lamb of God, Dioxyde, Dawn of Ashes grade : overall 8 - music 9 - lyrics 7 - recording quality 9
quick picks Megadeth - Endgame
released by Roadrunner Records on 15 Sept 2009 genre : trash metal Dave Mustaine and crew, slightly retooled as Chris Broderick replaces Glen Dover on guitar, return from the studio with their twelfth album, Endgame. In 2007, United Abominations re-ignited my interest in Megadeth after they lost me in the late 90s. Now, it is good to hear consistency in Endgame: hard, fast, intense songs with plenty of wailing guitar solos and Mustaine’s unmistakable singing throughout. But the record shines during the political and social issues songs, which is typically where Megadeth soars. 8/10 - MK
Herzschlag - Fest Der Liebe
released by Metropolis on 22 September 2009 genre : electro Herzschlag’s debut album is all about pounding beats, heavy synths, and grinding, distorted male vocals. Each track is full of energy; any one could crush the dance floor. You must break out the translator to understand these lyrics, unless you’re fluent in German. Although, it doesn’t matter much if you can’t comprehend the meaning behind the songs; your feet won’t care. There is a mystery behind the band: the German producer behind the project is well-known but is remaining anonymous. 8/10 - MK 35
Digital Geist - Motorcade EP
released on 22 September 2009 genre : electronic dance music The three years since the last release were put to good use as this EP shows progression in their sound. This EP features four beat-driven tracks, the first “Aeroplane” mixes in acid lines and atmospheric sounds. “Lunar Patrol” parts 1 and 2 bring an upbeat feeling and supply inorganic bleeps and blips that root the soundscape in the future. Motorcade features vocals by Bill Boulden/Spruke and tosses in guitar, which adds a new dimension to DG. With any luck we will see a full-length album soon. 8/10 - MK october 2009 AUXILIARY
dj tracks Edwin Somnambulist Edwin Somnambulist is the host of the online radio show, Industrial Strength Nightmares, and a veteran of club and radio Djing, doing so across Canada since 1998. Based in Toronto, Canada, ISN is an hour-long radio show devoted to industrial, EBM, electro, noise, gothic, and other forms of underappreciated music, with new episodes every Monday. In addition to best and latest music, Edwin brings his unique blend of commentary, comedy, and cynicism to his weekly podcasts. The show’s current mandate is to focus on new and underground material, including work by local and independent artists.
“Bass Alert” Modulate
The debut album of this project out of Manchester is killer all the way through, but “Bass Alert” stands out as a high energy floor filler.
“Tanz im Kopf v2” Valium Era
All of Valium Era’s EPs are available for free download through his MySpace site. The Tanz im Kopf EP is a great place to start.
The latest release on Pro Noize, and the debut album of this project from Düsseldorf. “Stalinallee” has a great beat and some very cool messing with vocal samples.
“Krach Bumm” Noisuf-X
From Voodoo Ritual, the latest (and, arguably, the best) Noisuf-X album.
Memmaker: Kobenhavn - The followup to the album How to Enlist in a Robot Uprising from the breakout Montreal band Memmaker, this track is currently only available on the Kinetik Festival 2 compilation.
“Straftanz West (Studio-X 12inch Hardstyle Remix)” Straftanz
A rumored side project of Rotersand, Straftanz’s debut EP went over huge. Australia’s Studio-X kicks the energy up a notch with this hardstyle remix.
This album was long awaited and excellent. “Glaskastentraum” is a fast-paced song with angry vocals that will fit well in any aggro set.
“One Night Stand” Alien Vampires
Alien Vampires releases keep getting better and better. “One Night Stand” is a real standout tune on the album, with a great dance floor beat.
“Rave My Head” Extize
Great beat, great samples, great energy. This track is easy to fit into any fun club set.
“Power Plant” Simon Viklund
As I’m a video game fanatic at heart, this update on Bionic Commando’s tracks was a welcome addition to my collection. “Power Plant” is a great high-energy track that I sometimes sneak into my sets. AUXILIARY october 2009
The tenth month in the Gregorian calendar, October, brings a whole slew of holidays, from World Food Day to Apple day; arguably the most anticipated of them all is Halloween. This holiday inspires us to dig a little deeper into our souls and pull out that little extra darkness. And that darkness sparks urges to watch horror movies, seek tales of ghosts and ghouls, dress up in costumes, carve jack-o’lanterns, and decorate our living quarters with skulls and spiders. For this issue’s mix tape we looked back into our music libraries and searched out songs that in one way or another incorporate the spirit of Halloween. “In My Coffin” – Cult of the Psychic Fetus (Meagan Breen) “Pumpkin Head” – The Misfits (Mike Kieffer) “Graveyard Love Song” – Miguel and the Living Dead (Meagan Breen) “Scary Monsters” – David Bowie (Paul Morin) “Hell” – Squirrel Nut Zippers (Luke Copping) “Killing Moon” – Echo and the Bunnymen (Aaron Andrews) “Kids Will Be Skeletons” – Mogwai (Paul Morin) “Fucked by the Devil” – 45 Grave (Aaron Andrews) “Release the Bats” – The Birthday Party (Paul Morin) “Written in Blood” – She Wants Revenge (Jennifer Link) “Bastards Screaming” – Rotersand (Mike Kieffer) “No More Ghosts” – Neuroticfish (Mike Kieffer) “Thriller” – Michael Jackson (Luke Copping) “Everyday is Halloween” – Ministry (Jennifer Link)
Doc Hammer, best known as one half of the creative team that brings you The Venture Brothers on Adult Swim, is a writer, musician, painter, and style maven. As the October 18, 2009 premiere of the fourth season of The Venture Brothers looms closer Auxiliary Magazine had a chance to talk to Doc Hammer about style, menâ€™s suits, his band, oil painting, and why he does what he does.
ACCORDING TO HAMMER INTERVIEWLUKE COPPING PHOTOGRAPHSRON DOUGLAS
october 2009 AUXILIARY
Being that Auxiliary is predominantly a style magazine; let’s jump right in with the obligatory fashion whoring. You are known as something of a polymath, but outside of your multidisciplinary successes you’re also known as something of a dashing dresser. Is it more a developed personal style or do you follow fashion or certain designers? DH: Well, you know, fashion is really weird, I guess you could sum up fashion’s strangeness in that there are two basic ways to pursue fashion. One is to be trendy, and not in a diminutive sense, the sense of someone who follows trends. The other way is to be kind of... stylish, and the way I’m using it implies not necessarily the following of trends, but a following of a personal style that kind of transcends trends. You would not call Nick Cave trendy. He never dresses to what’s in fashion, but he’s always very fashionable, and he changes with the times. If you look back at his earlier stuff, and Nick Cave is just a random example, twenty years ago he looked like Frankenstein, he dressed in a very weird almost goth style. And then he switched it, but at no point did he ever really touch base with the agreed masses fashion sense. When it was ok to have mustaches, Nick Cave had a mustache. Fashion is that weird thing where if you totally drift out and don’t follow zeitgeist at all you end up being this kind of costume dresser, so if you look at it I guess I’m more of a dandy. And I don’t mean dandy in the sense that people use it today which is this antiquarian idea of a dandy, that a dandy dresses in old fashioned dandy clothes. I mean it in the sense that the word dandy is alive, someone who who is very immaculate about the way he dresses and lives by his wit, it’s a very classic paradigm. I think that’s more what I fall into.
Heads, ‘If you wear the same thing everyday, you will be remembered, everyone knows what Superman looks like.’ The suit is amazing, it’s such a great thing. It speaks of this bizarre kind of authority. The weird thing about a suit is that if you start wearing suits be prepared to start hearing this every day for a year and a half, ‘Hey, where you going?’ Your going to hear it until people start realizing that you wear suits to functions other than weddings, funerals, and reunions. ‘I am going nowhere, and I look great!’ should always be your response. The suit is one of the key elements of men’s style that transcends all the trends. DH: It’s a hundred year old thing, the modern suit that we wear today is based on a sack suit, which a well over a hundred year old cut. If something that lasts a hundred years isn’t stable enough for you, what else are you looking for? It hasn’t changed that much. Men’s fashion is really really slow going. Exactly. Moving away from the items that are classic and never really go away, there are so many trends that do come and go. Being around stylish and fashionable areas like New York are there any trends right now that you just want to violently kill off.
“The suit is amazing, it’s such a great thing. It speaks of this bizarre kind of authority”
I am more interested in the fit of my clothes than men who buy shirts in packages. I don’t think most men know what size they are or that shirts come in sizes. I have this weird theory that they go to a store, and they go, ‘Shirt!’ and then they see a package and they say, ‘Color!’ and then they buy that and put it on and the sleeves are way to long. Every guy thinks he’s a large, unless he’s a little bit big and then he thinks he’s a triple extra large, but if he’s an extra large and he thinks he’s large, then he’s wearing his shirt a little tight. If he’s a medium, he’s wearing his shirt huge, cause men are just larges. Try to fucking buy a t-shirt today! Just a t-shirt printed with, lets say, a Led Zeppelin logo, try to find one any size below a medium, and if you actually can find a small, put that fucking thing on, that is not a fucking small. This just proves that men like to dress in gigantic clothing. It’s this weird kind of thing where now men wear burqas. They have lost all sense of sexuality, their pants don’t fit, their shirts are huge, and they wear these gigantic winter jackets. They really gird themselves in this kind of sexless costume. Which is why I wear my shirt unbuttoned all the way down to 1974 to show a little man cleavage. That’s great, that takes care of the next three fashion questions I had right off that bat. DH: I could go on forever and ever. I am actually right now getting a bespoke suit custom made for me by Paul Smith. That’s how really into having shit fit me I am, and I am tiny, I am really small, at 5’11 I am 115 pounds, that’s bird bone small. I don’t look unhealthily skinny, but I am... small, so nothing fits me. I have to tailor everything but underpants, which they can probably tailor, but I would get them let out, if you know what I’m saying, and I think you actually do...
Talking about men’s fashion, and now that we have a sense of how you’ve developed this personal style, it’s interesting that you touched on Nick Cave and other icons of the same era and style who made their own statements in fashion though bucking the trends and taking the classes to update for themselves. Just in terms of how you perceive menswear, and perhaps even as a service to our less fashionable readers. Are there any basic items that you think any and every man should have in their wardrobe? Classics that never go out of style? DH: I’ll tell you this, I love the suit. I love it because you don’t have to think about it, and you can dress it up and down. Let’s just call a suit a pair of pants, made of the same fabric as a jacket. You can wear them as separates, you can wear them together. You can dress them down and wear any shirt you want underneath. You can dress it way up and top it with whatever you want. It’s a really great fucking investment. And here’s the thing, a lot of people are like, ‘eh, the four button was in like ten, fifteen years ago.’ Then it went to three, two, then one, how do you follow that sort of thing! Fuck It! You don’t give a shit! Get a really good one, a really good one that fits you really well. Nobody is going to care how many fucking buttons it has or how big the collar is, just get a good classic suit that fits you really well. And here’s another piece of really terrible advice; if you get a wacky suit, it’s never in fashion. You’re free to wear it all the time cause you’re uniquely out of fashion, and I’m not talking about a giant lapeled orange number, I’m talking about something that you just really like. I don’t know who said it, maybe it was the guy from The Talking
DH: I was walking down the street and I was noticing trends that I thought actually died already that I was still seeing. Trucker hats that are worn perched atop the head at this rakish angle, what the fuck? Really? I’m still seeing that. That’s kind of weird.
Here’s the thing, most of these looks are based on irony. Your 80s headbands, men wearing bandannas around their neck, bad mustaches... your basic Brooklyn hipster is based entirely on irony. The definition of irony is that it’s the last thing you are expecting to see, and when you expect this the item it is no longer ironic, therefore it’s bad fashion. To wear these things in any kind of a trend makes them skip over irony and just turns them into... bad fashion, it’s out of hand. I despise the ironic look because once it becomes a trend it’s not ironic anymore. One of my biggest problems is the way people look at irony. A lot of what I do in my work through the comedy of The Venture Brothers and definitely in my paintings, almost everything I do, is this kind of rejection of the ironic and this acceptance of something that is truly beautiful and not even concerned of it’s uniqueness. Just a good thing that’s fucking well crafted. You mentioned that you are in the process of having a bespoke suit made by Paul Smith, are there any other designers or boutiques that you follow? DH: No, I shop everywhere. My key to shopping is that I shop constantly, I shop more than women, I really do shop a lot. But shopping is just a kind of walking around and looking at things. Every time I shop, I don’t buy, it’s very rare that I actually buy. It’s the opposite of the way that most people buy, which is to go, ‘I need a pair of pants’ and then they go look for a pair of... pants, and then they buy... pants, and then they have... pants! The pants they get are the pants that they could find on that day, that were in stock in the store they were able to find on that day. They are not going to be great fucking pants, they are not going to be ideal. Shopping for me is a walk that I will do to clear my mind and not do something challenging while I’m trying to think. The idea that you can go around and look at a bunch of things, and when you come across the ultimate pants, you just get the ultimate pants, you’re gonna need the goddamned thing eventually. So that’s sort of how I do that, instead of just needing something and going to get it and having to settle for what I find. It’s too utilitarian of a thing to do, and it’s just not wise in my estimation. If you just get the thing you need, then you’re treating clothing like food. They say need leads to compromise, which is never a good idea. DH: You’re right on track. The way I do it is, not to just go out and purchase to have. I really do just look at fashion, and occasionally I see that thing that I think should be part of my life. I’m a clotheshorse, I just love that shit. If art is very important to you then adorning yourself is very important. Speaking about some of your projects, with The Venture Brothers you and Jackson have created one of the most pop savvy and genre bending shows on television. Though there have been countless pop references that you guys have worked into episodes, are there any that you just won’t go near, any celebrities that are too sacred to you to lampoon? DH: No, we work in what we need, and never make a conscious effort to throw out pop culture references. We were just raised by the same zeitgeist that everybody
was raised with, so were just referencing our youth basically. It seems like we’re throwing out pop references, but I was just raised on Star Wars.
LI FESTY LE
One of the things that does stand out about the show is that it doesn’t seem that cultural references are thrown in with any sort of disingenuousness and that it happens in a very organic way.
polarized in their opinions on the conventions. Is it something you guys actively look forward to or is it just part of the job having to go out and promote.
DH: That’s because we’re not working them in, we’re just throwing in these little... wubbies, these things that feel good to us. There are a lot of ways for jokes to pay off, and I hate to get mathy on this crap, but you can use these references the way you and your friends use these references. I made a mention of “Little Miss Can’t Be Wrong” by... who were they? Pocket Full of Kryptonite? Two Princes? Spin Doctors. I made a Spin Doctors reference. Someone asked me if I liked the Spin Doctors, that really doesn’t matter. It says a lot, it puts people in the place. If someone brings up that song, “Little Miss Can’t Be Wrong”, you’re getting the power of their personal nostalgia, you’re getting a sense of their love for the song. To put out a reference that we all understand is really kind of a powerful thing to do. Which is why I hate stuff like Family Guy, it will just toss this crap out at you in this pandering, make you feel good way. ‘I’m smart too, I know who Gary Coleman is,’ and that’s kind of the way Family Guy uses it. They just toss out this name so everybody can immediately feel the power of, one, knowing the reference, and two what that reference implies. But it’s not worked into the plot and it has no potential meaning, it’s just this ugly list; and if you didn’t get it the first time shows like Family Guy will actually show you how the reference is used in a flashback, that has no value, of the time Peter and Gary Coleman got in a fistfight. It does try a little too hard to smack you in the face with it. Too much of a wink and a nod. DH: And it works, the show is very successful. This is an effective comedy device, clearly. I find it to be slightly ugly. It’s a little heavy handed. DH: And heavy handed things work, they work beautifully. Gearing up for the new season, Adult Swim recently released a teaser of the upcoming episodes on their website, which has generated a considerable amount of buzz. Are you as nervous or excited about the fourth season’s premiere as you have been is past years? Being that you guys have been through this a few times, DH: I’m even more excited for the season coming after this, and I think that we’re just writing our best stuff. We are under a lot of pressure, Jackson and I work incredibly hard, I cannot explain to you how many jobs we have on this show and how hard we work. There is never a feeling of, ‘lets relax and cash some checks.’ We just care so deeply about this shit. If somebody says about our fourth season, ‘second season was better and fourth season was a sell out!’ It’s the same thing that I did when I was a kid, when any band that had a new album come out I hated it, I fucking hated it. I don’t care who they are. I hated the record because I had fallen so deeply in love with the album before it. A few years later I would go back and listen to this record I hated, and it’s a fucking masterpiece! And then they would put out another record and I would think they totally suck now. I kept doing this, have to write notes going, ‘stop doing this! The Pixies album is fine, stop acting like it sucks.’ People do that to our show, they fall in love with a season, maybe the ones they first saw, and won’t accept the one coming after it. But I am telling you, from our standpoint, they are coming from the same exact place. There is no sense of relaxing, we are just as in love with this crap as we were before, if not more. I think we’re challenging ourselves more and doing things that we think the viewer can tolerate. You guys have been doing a lot of conventions lately. A lot of creators seem really
DH: I have no problem with conventions and I have no problems with fans, because I’m a fan of stuff, I know what a fan is. There are things that I love and there are things that I want to connect to. So the idea of fandom is not this wretched group of people that bug me. They are people that are interested in the same things I am interested in, they’re kind of like me. So I can’t look at conventions as anything more than a place to connect with these people. Who, aside from the cliche that they give me my living, are not dissimilar from me, and we have the same tastes and like very similar things. I like cons but they are draining and it’s weird to be a celebrity, and the con is where you really get that. On a daily basis, once a day someone may be like, ‘Hey Doc Hammer!’ It’s nothing. But at a con you feel the power of the cult status of The Venture Brothers, and that’s kind of weird. People chase you and expect things out of you. I feel strangely indebted to these people and I don’t want to give them a bad experience. I don’t want to tell them to get the fuck away from me when I’m having a bad day, so I’ll offer them everything that I think they’re interested in. It’s this weird sociopathic tendency that I have to give them this experience. Basically they just look at you and stare at you and you talk to them, later they will blog about the conversation that they had which never really happened, it was just me talking at somebody while they just looked at me. I really can’t explain it, it’s a very weird thing to talk to your basic silent fan. And then you meet other fans, who at the end of the day, you can call them up and go to the movies with them, they function entirely as part of your peer group. So it’s not like we’re going to be seeing any Beatles-esque “Hard Days Night” montages of you and Jackson running through a con with false mustaches and hiding in phone booths to hide from fans? DH: No... well, with any hopes maybe? Yeah, Jackson and I do have boy band appeal, don’t doubt the mathematic equation there. You guys have become quite the niche sex symbols apparently. DH: That’s what I’m hoping for, that would change my life. Whereas now, it’s pretty much the same thing as before. We have quite a few attractive readers, we’ll try to help you guys out. DH: They can send fan mail, they can go on Twitter, ‘Those Venture boys are super hunky!’ They have to use all antiquated Tiger Beat terms like “Super Hunky!” Nothing modern, shit your mom says, ‘they have really cute buns.’ Aside from the television work you’re also quite an accomplished painter and musician. With your work as an oil painter and the series of female portraits, what was the evolution of the Saints series and your latest show? DH: It’s weird, I always feel bad talking about this kind of stuff, but the reason I do these portraits is that it is a reduction of content. If you look at my paintings, they are always the same fucking thing. I keep repeating it over and over again. It’s because I am not really interested in concept, I just don’t really give a fucking shit. The idea of the painting as narrative does not appeal to me. I’m not being flippant or obnoxious, but when you work in the kind of realm I work in today, which is figurism, if not representational, it’s overrun by illustrators. They’re not really interested in the painting, they are interested in the subject of the painting. It’s a girl and she is crying blood, or a piece of meat, all that kind of nonsense which I don’t care about, I care about this object, this painting which no one has seen. You see jpegs of it where once
again it is reduced out of its painting realm and back into it’s subject matter of, ‘that looks like a girl.’ But if you see the painting itself, I’m really proud of it. That’s what I have been working so hard to achieve, just the surface of this painting. Go to a contemporary gallery and look at the representational work, and then go to your local big ass museum and look at a Velázquez or look at a Rembrandt and you will see immediately that the surface is different. You can see through these older paintings. There is a sense of dimension that is higher in its ability to describe volume than a photograph. It’s really miraculous based on the underpainting and the building up of whites that it almost becomes like a topographical map, where the light portions of the painting are actually raised up. It’s micro-mental and perceivable, but unseeable, the amounts of glazes that liven the skin tones are amazing. There’s a point in my work that I think is most represented by the Saints series, where I realized that this is what I cared about the most, this surface and the object of the painting. It’s also the alienation factor, my work would be far more popular if it was more glitzy, if I had them crying blood or if there was something showy or comic bookish about them. From a technical standpoint, I read, I believe on your Deviantart.com blog, a series of tips and suggestions for oil painters that came across with a very teacherly quality. It’s something you don’t see a lot of notable artists in any medium do for free these days. I was fascinated by it. DH: A lot of people’s work is facile. We’re coming out of god knows how much modernism and post modernism, a hundred years ago the dadaists kind of changed art on us and were coming out of that. Students today are a little more interested in technique and creating something that their uncle can point at and call it art. Something that transcends the cliché of, ‘my kid can do that!’ Nobody looks at my work and says their kid can do that, unless their kid is fucking brilliant! We grew up in this Keith Haring; celebrity as artist world, where the artist is more important than the art, and we can rebel against that. I find that students are the ones that respond to my work the most. They will look at a late Rossetti from his Venetian style work and they might think it’s pretty. But a teacher might tell them otherwise, that it’s irrelevant and that it’s not pretty, and the student will believe it because they want to get good grades and because the teacher is supposed to know better, so they get that beaten out of them. Students can come to me and say, ‘you’re doing the thing that I thought wasn’t what I was supposed to do.’ And that’s been happening for some time now. When I did the Deviant Art thing I thought that I would be the thing that I wished I had when I was learning how to paint. A lot of my tips are more like Boy Scout good grooming tips, more than they are how to dress tips. It’s teaching people that the discipline and sacrifice are the most important things, that keeping your brushes clean is important, that’s really what painting is. Painting is showing up and dealing with sucking, that’s the big tip, that’s what I want people to walk out knowing. A lot of artists want people to think that they are magicians, that it’s easy and no one else can do it and that they just shit this stuff out, and it’s untrue. People with skill
and passion can do it, that’s the talent. The thing that you are born with isn’t the ability to render figure, you can always learn that. What you are born with is the drive to fucking do it, and to want to do it in the face of constant failure. Painting is entirely failure, and if your painting wasn’t failure then your not moving forward and you are not correcting your own mistakes. What’s the point of making another one if you’re so fucking good that you have painted your masterpiece already. Every painting that a good painter does, they hate it, it sucks, and that’s what gets them going to do the next one so they can learn. That’s a hard thing to do, to have your occupation, hobby, life, be a place where you suck and you know you suck. People will get on me and tell me that I need to relax and take it easy, that I’m not really that bad. What they are missing is the arrogance of what I am saying, the fact that I know I suck proves that I know I am better than this, which is a very arrogant thing to do, so people should not be concerned with my self esteem. When I say I suck, it actually means that this is not a representation of my ability, I know that inside me is better. Dealing with my sucking and proudly saying this sucks is how I get up and do it again. I can’t let that thing get out there, I have to apologize for it with my next piece. Do you apply those same drives and philosophies to your music as well as your painting? DH: Oh yeah, and to my writing, and to my life. Once you have this weird operating procedure, these strange ethics, it’s everywhere. My music is this thing I do entirely to challenge myself and to create things that appeal to me on a very micro-mental level. It’s a very strange thing, the music that I make, and, like the paintings, when you see or hear it and think that’s a really beautiful painting of a girl or a really nice song, but what created that is this really dark drive to create something wholly personal and full of challenges. Moving into the music then, especially with your current band Weep, which has a more rock sound, when compared to your previous bands like Requiem in White, which has a more ethereal sound, has there been a major change? DH: It’s all the same thing, it came from the same exact place. In Mors Syphalitica, the band I was in for the most amount of time, I played all the instruments, Lisa, my ex, did all the singing. That was just what I was into then, it came from the same place. It really worked well with Lisa’s voice, Lisa had this really good voice. And it’s a bitter pill to some because it bordered on operatic, it’s not your basic pop voice, but you write for that. I had a violin in the band so I wrote a lot of violin parts. When I started Weep, which was a fucking accident, there was never supposed to be a Weep, I was just writing songs, because I do it habitually. My keyboard player that I had been in a band with previously called me up and asked what I was doing. I told him I was just writing my own shit, just to entertain myself, because it’s what I do. And he was like... ‘let’s make a band.’ He found two guys and we had a rehearsal with my songs and I sang them, I didn’t know I was going to fucking sing... I can’t
“Painting is showing up and dealing with sucking”
AUXILIARY october 2009
“No one in the band cares about the things that ruin albums”
fucking sing. I didn’t care, I just wanted to write this crap. We had one rehearsal and just became a band. We never had a meeting, there was never this point of ‘let’s be a band’, we all just sort of inherited this thing because we wanted to work together and they like the songs. Weep has just become something that I am really interested in. I think it’s a band of people that are capable of making a really good record. No one in the band cares about the things that ruin albums: we don’t care about being popular, we don’t care about being part of the zeitgeist, we don’t care about sounding like another band, we just want to do our weird thing. Outside of your own music, and it’s that same horrible obligatory question you get asked in every interview, what are you listening to? Is it mainly the older stuff you tend to reference or are there any new bands you’re really into? DH: I go through everything, the way I look at art, comedy, music, it’s all the same thing, is that there is no shelf life on this crap. Beautiful things, true things, are really eternal, they transcend time and you don’t have to wait for a comeback to enjoy Joy Division, if you like that fucking shit play it all the god damn time. What was I listening to last night?... Suede, I was listening to Suede! Nineties I guess is when they had their popularity, never a really a big band in America, pretty big in Britain for a while... But what’s in my turn table, and clearly it’s not a turntable, it’s my mp3 or dvd player, but I like the idea of turn table. What’s being played at my apartment is a weird amalgamation of wubbie... the word wubbie by the way is a word I use for someone’s blanket as a child, this thing that is tattered and smells like pee pee, but you adore it. There are these wubbie bands that I can write to because they go right through me. I am so familiar with their work that I can just put them on repeat and write to them all god damn day long, and I do a lot of writing for Venture Brothers. There is a lot of music that becomes my own personal heartbeat, that weird cascade of white noise that you agree with. So I listen to a lot of Chameleons, and if you remember a band called Catherine Wheel… That band, they put out a million records, and I can put them all in the there, same with Placebo. Catherine Wheel and Placebo are old enough and I know them so well that I can paint and write to this stuff really well. They rock enough to keep me going and they’re dumb enough to not challenge me too much. I don’t have to stop and go, ‘my god what is the, that’s earth shatteringly beautiful.’ It’s really just successfully written stuff, no clunkers, just
really competent music. When I say it’s dumb enough, I don’t mean it to be insulting, they know that it’s dumb, they know they are creating pop gems. I like all of it, there are a few things that I cannot understand, but for the most part I am really open to a lot of crap. And there is a lot of crap that I just don’t get, I don’t get how anyone ever liked it and it’s just very weird. And I’m not talking about the ones that I should hate, like the Journeys and the stuff like that, I get that, that stuffs fine. There are just some kinds of music that I doesn’t make sense to me... weird gutless garbage. Music lacking balls? DH: Yeah, and as for balls, I mean Cocteau Twins has balls, it’s a very mechanical, solo-less studio driven thing, but it has nuts! Looking ahead past the upcoming season of Venture Brothers, do you have any super secret project you’re waiting to unveil? DH: I’m so deep in production that it’s so hard to think about any other crap. I do have a CD I’m trying to finish, and I guess in a couple months once the production slows down I’ll finish it. Where are you guys in terms of production right now? Last I heard you were all set with the first half of the season and getting into the second half of the season. DH: Yeah, but I’m still editing and doing output. Editing is a really loose term for what I do, I don’t really cut film cause it’s fucking animation. What I’m doing is graphics and other things that have to be done for the episodes to give them last their minute polish. I guess we’re half way done with the season that’s about to air, and we’re better than halfway finished with the writing of the season that comes after that. And then there is production and post of that season. Jackson and I are working all the time, there is never really any off time for us. They all sort of blend into themselves and we never really stop writing. So I keep forgetting what episodes are gonna air this season and what’s going to air the season after that. It’s all sort of the same to me, I can’t really figure it out.
Horror Inspired alternatives to a Halloween costume
It’s that time of the year again when you know you’re going to be invited to costume parties all throughout the month of October. Most people rejoice at the notion of dressing up as their alter ego or modeling their store-bought costume. Then there are all the rest, the “others” that moan in annoyance at the fact that they have to come up with a Halloween costume. Step away from the lingerie and bunny ears combo, and put down the dollar store mask! There is a solution! Try dressing up in comfortable yet Halloween-appropriate horror-inspired attire. ‘Tis the season to wear blood splattered clothing with a socially acceptable purpose!
styled and written by Meagan Breen
This Wednesday 13 band t-shirt is a perfect piece for a horror-inspired ensemble. Wednesday 13 is a horror punk band fronted by Joseph Poole of the Murderdolls. The t-shirt design is reminiscent of old B horror movie posters, and it’s campy just like the horror punk band themselves!
Double row pyramid studded belt by Hot Topic adds a bit of classic punk to this outfit. Studded belts are not only fashionable but practical; they keep your pants up! Spider and skull belt buckle with red Swarovski rhinestone crystals from CoolBugStuff.com is the perfect belt buckle for your horrorinspired look. The textured surface looks like a dug up part of a grave! Bullet wristband by Hot Topic is a great accessory. Bullets help kill zombies, but as a wrist band they just help to pull all the elements of this outfit together.
Cherry red double-dyed jeans by Social Collision stand out with a unique color. What goes better with Halloween and horror than the color red? Especially when it looks like your pants have been soaked in blood.
AUXILIARY october 2009
ZSkull and roses sneakers by Airwalks have white soles that match the white graphics on the t-shirt perfectly. Every villain needs comfortable shoes in order to chase their victims. 42
Bloody Hand Print Halter by Trash Queen Clothing screams: “being covered in blood never looked so sexy!” Whether you’re a zombie, a man-eater, or Lady Bathory, wearing this halter will make you the life (or death) of the party.
Lily Munster hair clips by Trash Queen Clothing are kitschy, cute, and add some classic vamp appeal to this spooky ensemble. Illusion Victorian Skull necklace by Sweetheart Sinner ties in nicely with the bloody halter’s coloring. Is it a skull or is it a lady looking in the vanity? This handmade necklace creates an eerie illusion. Coffin Pin Up Gal cigarette case by Sweetheart Sinner has multiple uses. A gal needs a fun case to keep her cigarettes in but it can also be used to hold your ID, money, or business cards.
Spiral Skulls Wiggle Skirt by Trash Queen Clothing has a red skull print and, when paired with the bloody halter, forms a deadly pair that will scare everyone into submission.
A DIY tote bag can hold all those girlie items or act as your trick-or-treat bag. Take a black tote, add a tombstone patch, and create your own fantastic bag.
Vintage purple heeled booties are perfect for the fall season. Just because it’s Halloween doesn’t mean you can forget the rules of fashion. Red and purple match wonderfully. Besides, don’t witches wear purple boots?
october 2009 AUXILIARY
BOYS .BE AMBITIOUS
Put down the band tee and black jeans. These looks will have you ruling the night.
photographer Omar Robinson fashion stylist Numi Prasarn makeup artist Margherita Tisato hair stylist Numi Prasarn model Michael Hopwood
OPPOSITE PAGE Military Drape Shirt by Retroscope Fashion with pleated dress pants by Hause of Howe. THIS PAGE White button down and chain necklaces by H&M with skull tie by Express Men. White skinny jeans by Trash and Vaudeville with black reversible belt by Express Men.
october 2009 AUXILIARY
AUXILIARY october 2009
THIS PAGE Gothic Aristocrat Metal Buckle Coat by Retroscope Fashions, white skinny jeans by Trash and Vaudeville with black reversible belt by Express Men. OPPOSITE PAGE Stretch Eroded Shirt by Shrine, white skinny jeans by Trash and Vaudeville with black reversible belt by Express Men.
october 2009 AUXILIARY
THIS PAGE Punk Aristocrat Punk Strap Vest by Retroscope Fashions with black and white striped jeans by Trash and Vaudeville. OPPOSITE PAGE Black military coat by Tripp NYC with pleated dress pants by Hause of Howe. AUXILIARY october 2009
october 2009 AUXILIARY
Who said fashion has to be safe? Accessories boasting a harder edge.
photographer Steve Prue fashion styling Team Rockstar makeup artist Anita Nouryeh hair stylist Kristin Jackson AUXILIARY august 2009
model Siouxsie Radcliffe
THIS PAGE Aristocratic Fleur Necklace in silver by RockLove. OPPOSITE PAGE House of Bias Purple Opera Length Latex Gloves with Dark Cameo Ring by RockLove. Necklaces by RockLove; Double Headed Eagle Crest on Lust Chain paired with Dark Cameo Pendant necklace on silk ribbon. october 2009 AUXILIARY
AUXILIARY october 2009
THIS PAGE Tomtom Designs hand detailed Punk Corset, Black Latex Bra by House of Bias with Double Headed Eagle Crest on Lust Chain by RockLove. Spiked black wrist cuffs are modelâ€™s own. OPPOSITE PAGE Collective Chaos Designs feathered Olive Classic Latex Collar.
THIS PAGE Soliloquy by Renee Masoomian patterned latex dress and merrywidow under clear snap-up latex dresses.
october august 2009 AUXILIARY
THIS PAGE Chain Print Vegas Shorts by New York Couture, Black Latex Bra by House of Bias with RockLove Queen of Heart Hearts Necklace. AUXILIARY october 2009
where to buy Airwalk www.airwalk.com
Hot Topic www.hottopic.com
Collective Chaos Designs www.collectivechaosdesign.com
House of Bias www.houseofbias.com
Sweetheart Sinner www.sweetheartsinner.etsy.com
Irregular Choice www.irregularchoice.com
Tomtom Designs tomtomfashions.com
Express Men www.express.com
New York Couture www.newyorkcouture.net
Trash and Vaudeville 4 St Marks Place, NYC
Retroscope Fashions www.retroscopefashions.com
Trash Queen Clothing www.trashqueenclothing.etsy.com
Hause of Howe www.hauseofhoweclothing.com
RockLove Jewelry www.rocklovedesigns.com
Tripp NYC www.trippnyc.com
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www.auxiliarymagazine.com next issue december 2009