Tuesday, 25 October 2011

Transcendental Black Metal


- [fuck] the demand for reality - that is for unity, simplicity, communicability, etc. - lyotard(ish) - "what is postmodernism?" -

First: An apology, to all who've been reading for the last couple of years, an apology for disappearing for a bit. Blogs ebb and flow of course, but this one has ebbed more than I would have liked while I finished writing up. For now, we're back in business.

But what is this business? Still ebooks, ereaders, and all (sometimes tenuously) related material, at least for the most part. My PhD viva is at the end of next month on this very subject, and, if all works out, a book to follow on the same or similar. So this blog will continue to discuss such things (which means I guess I should have said something about the Kindle Fire, but then again the news was kind of boring. Mark Sample tweeted a while back that he thought the same, that LCDs weren't the future of ereading. I'm inclined to agree: a reliable and affordable hybrid screen would have been news; a cheap touchscreen that will grace landfills everywhere in 18 months as new tech emerges is somewhat less impressive. No doubt it will perform well this Christmas, but I'm not here to cheerlead Amazon's share prices).

But I'd like to broaden what gets discussed here on 4oh4 too. I've just started a teaching fellowship post specialising in Digital Humanities and Critical Theory, and my MA students in particular are reminding me of all the theory I loved before getting lost in ereading. Over the course of writing the thesis I also became more interested in politics, philosophy, cognitive psychology, and experimental literature, and I hope ideas relating to all of these will get an airing over future postings (which, whilst on no fixed schedule, will be more frequent and with shorter discursive postings alongside the essay length entries).

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An aside: One of my students has an awesome project brewing on transcendental black metal, nationality, maybe some ecology, maybe some poetry. He turned me back on to Liturgy who've made one of my favourite albums of the year so far. He also gave me a copy of Hunter Hunt-Hendrix's manifesto for a Trascendental Black Metal (caps required) which is utterly bonkers, occasionally flat out wrong (or maybe just not fully realised), and also courageous (an admirable and admirably defended aspect of the genre(?) it's held up to define).


The ever fascinating Timothy Morton's been getting excited about Wolves in the Throne Room recently (sample quote: "Wolves in the Throne room provide a kind of musical antihistamine that enables humans not to have an allergic reaction to working at the depth necessary for reforging our broken coexistence with all beings"), and I think Hunt-Hendrix's manifesto (for a similar if not at all the same music) taps into a similar vein (sample quote).

So, a heads up: transcendental black metal and ecology. Just sayin'.

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