Monthly Archives: June 2013

Musical fridays 2: Charles and the white trash European blues connection.


A while ago I announced a series of ‘musical fridays’, so here’s the second post, with a very obscure song, ‘Americans’ by ‘Charles and the white trash European blues connection’ taken from my ‘song in my head’ posts on facebook…

Hidden somewhere in my CD collection iconnections an obscure CD in a paper case with a picture of the back of some strange guy with the words ‘Charles and the white trash European blues connection’ on it. It’s not at all that clear anywhere whether that’s the name of the band, or the name of the Cd, or both… On the CD if you care to listen to a lot of noise can be found, which is supposed to be music, and that opccupies a niche somewhere in between blues and garage rock, sometimes with a light industrual feel even. There’s not that much information on the case, just the names of band members and stuff like that, and it can be noted that the whole album has been recorded and mixed on one afternoon on april 2nd in 1998. I suspect that it was not the most sober afternoon in those musicians’ lives, but that might just be a prejudice…

There also is a sticker on it with a single name, ‘Arno’, probably a later addiction from the record company to clarify a bit about the CD so they could be able to sell at least a few copies of this record. I’m not sure much copies of it were ever sold, and I even suspect it is out of print now. It’s one of those records that went forgotten in the history of rock’n roll…

All of this doesn’t mean that the ‘Arno’ guy isn’t a big name in the wonderous world of Belgian rock’n roll. The so-called Arno, full name Arno Hintjens, is a well-known Belgian rock-singer, who was the frontman of a band called TC Matic in the seventies/eighties, a noisy band whose greatest hits are called putain putain and oh la la la. But he is also known for his solo music, which is quite variable. He’s the kind of rockstar with a broken voice that sounds like he’s always drunk (or worse) and who sometimes can sound quite inspired on one song, and in the next song just makes plain dumb music. (I thik of a song like bathroom singer, and yes I am a madness fan and still I find this very dumb music) A lot of his songs are in French, and in a surreal twist of weirdness the guy has even been given the knighthood (the title of “Knight in the Arts and Literature” actually) for what he has done for the French language by the French government. Don’t ask me… Europe can be a pretty weird place sometimes if you think about it..

Back to that CD… I don’t like everything Arno has recorded, but I’ve always liked that ‘Charles and the white trash European blues connection’ album a lot, and not only because it’s a good CD to scare guests with… It is one of the albums that brought me alive through my twentysomething years… A very pure form of very basic rock’n roll with a heavy groove and a very raw form of the blues… And still a CD to put on very loudly, as loudly as possible, when my wife isn’t home… but it’s so obscure now I can’t find any of it on youtube except for this Kinks cover ‘death of a clown‘. 6 out of 10 songs are here on grooveshark though…

A song that always stood out for me is the last song, called ‘Americans’, which is a simple tune about the things Americans gave us (Europeans), a subject I’ve been thinking about lately. The music is raw and the vocals are tormented, and very pure, and the lyrics are a bit random and filled with ‘explicit content’ of the type we have been importing from the US a lot…

And now that we’re here, just listen to their version of the old delta blues classic ‘you got to move‘. It won’t get more industrial and garage than this, but then there’s that really incredible harmonica solo, wow…

So, am I the only one who likes Charles and the white trash European blues connection?

peace

Bram

Advertisements

Capitalism vs. Christianity I: Rule of the Market


Coin of Augustus PAS 200 px sh“Markets, like merchants, are nothing new, but they are central to the capitalist society in quite a new and more abstract way” – James Fulcher

A bit late because of work, illness, bad time management, alien abductions and the birthday of my wife, but here it is: my first post in what will become a series about the incompatibility of Christianity and capitalism. (Click on link for the introductionary post)

Central to capitalism as it is currently defended by a lot of people is not ‘in whose hands the means of production’ are or should be, but the idea of ‘the free market’. And even more: the ‘free market’ itself has to be quite a priority according to those who like to preach capitalism. Not only is it important for ‘the market’ to be ‘free’, it is also important for that ‘free market’ to be really important in all aspects of our lives. And indeed, for some reason unknown to me ‘the market’, together with the whole idea of ‘the economy’ which is centered around it, is seen by some as the center of reality, and even as the only reality that matters.

Not reasonable or logical at all
So what’s my first problem with this ‘marketisation of everything’? ‘My first critique to this is just philosophical: Contrary to what I’ve heard from some people sometimes, there is nothing ‘rational’ or even ‘realistic’ about putting the economy, centered around the so-called free market, as our top priority in life and all human affairs on planet earth, and as a lens through which all of this world has to be interpreted. If you want to look at the world this way, fine, but know very well that it is purely an ideological choice, and if you ask me it’s a very poor hermeneutic which leads to a very bad and unbalanced exegesis of the book of ‘reality’. Continue reading

Some interesting things elsewhere VIII


If you want to get rid of an evil by means of a revolution, work for finding a way of life completely without that evil. Anything just built on reactions to that evil is still bound to said evil and is never going to take its influence away…

I didn’t have the time to finish my first capitalism post yet (it’s getting too long anyway) but I hope it will be ready for this wednesday. Things have been hectic again, and to make up for not that much interesting stuff here I present you the resurrection of the ‘some interesting things elsewhere’ series, with various dreadlocked guys, feminists, fundamentalists, and even the gospel coalition…

Let’s start with some music: The most interestpsaltersing band on the planet (and one of the most distinct bands in the galaxy) has its music available on bandcamp now: the psalters! (Not all albums are there yet…) If you don’t know the psalters, just listen…

Philip Ryken on the Gospel Coalition with ‘how to discourage art in the church’ has some very interesting points.

And then from the ortodox side this article by Father Stephen on Prayers and the One God of all that I’m still processing.

From the feminist side: Libby Anne is blogging through some weird American book called ‘created to be his helpmeet’ which like me looks like the manual for spousal abuse and more disaster in marriage, and she as a non-christian is a lot beter at exegeting proverbs 31 than the writer of that book. This confirms my idea that some things that go under the name ‘fundamentalism’ might say that they take the bible serious, but actually just follow their own (very weird) tradition and use some bible verses here and there to back it up…

Speaking of feminism and women in the church, this breaks my heart. Something is very wrong with how women are viewed in our society, including Christian circles. Be sure to also read this post from just beloved. It is beyond my understanding why women are judged so easily because of their looks, but it still is a very pervasive evil!

Speaking of evil: Roger Olson about ‘satanic realism’ (part 2)

Andrew Jones AKA tallskinnykiwi, the grandfather of Christian blogging, has a 10 year anniversary for his blog so he decided to start again with a whole new blog here.

15 things Jesus didn’t say

Totally unrelated: mosses frozen inside a glacier dating from the little ice age 500 years ago are still able to come back to life!

I leave you with some dreadlocked guy who reads you what he considers the best sermon ever:

peace

Bram