Reviews

Jeff Mills: Violet Extremist

REVIEW: Jeff Mills at Cable, London, 26.08.2012

‘In the creation of this concept all sectors were represented by rhythmatic formations’ – Millsart, Humana (AX-12).
‘Slower tempos are just kind of connected to the idea of thinking more about what the music is trying to say’ – Jeff Mills.

During this eagerly awaited 4 hour set, Jeff Mills didn’t play any Underground Resistance or Purpose Maker tunes. Anyone thinking that during such a long set – by conventional club standards – a wide variety of styles and genres might be featured, had it all wrong.
And yet…

I experienced this set as some of the most forward thinking techno music (futuristic sound) I’ve heard frequency-wise. In what it conveyed, JM’s sound continues to remain underground – beneath the radar of controlling forces – and resistant – challenging pre-formed conceptions in order to prepare a more harmonious world (so that we might leave?). [Read more →]

Press Reviews

Reviews of some anarchist, communist and ultra-left magazines and papers from Datacide 12 (2012): Black Flag, The Commune, Communist Left, Internationalist Papers, and Proletarian. [Read more →]

Retromania (book review)

When hell is full the dead will dance on your iPhone. Or: Data overrun, buffer overflow. A few thoughts about the obsolescence of the future and Simon Reynolds’ “Retromania”.

by lfo demon

Should I write a review of last year’s book? Simon Reynolds is still holding lectures on “Retromania”. And to be honest, the book is too good to let it pass by unnoticed (1). It holds many continuative thoughts about the state of (pop) culture. Nevertheless, its subject doesn’t stop at its reception. Just one year later, the book appears to be derived from another era with its long explanation on the iPod. iPod? Do we still discuss this today? It seems to be as out dated as talking about Windows 95 (2).

The writing style is catered to a bigger audience. “Retromania” is easy to read with its personalized anecdotes. The parts about theory are small excursus in footnotes. I got the impression that Reynolds read a lot during his studies, but didn´t continue this in his last books. He does refer to certain classic titles from Freud, Derrida, Spengler (p.170), but those excursus stay more or less rudimentary. Here, theory is like coffee table chat where certain names are dropped like dress codes. Been there, done that. But I won´t be too harsh because the approach is cleary journalistic and not oriented to a scientific standard. And I´m also wondering if it is possible to abstract broader insights from the described phenomenon.

The answers to the question of”why” stay vague, and so do the concepts. [Read more →]

“Fight for Freedom” – The legend of the “other”Germany (book review)

“Fight for Freedom”
The legend of the “other”Germany.
extended book review by Christoph Fringeli


“But, at the same stage of the war which led many people into emotional outbursts to the detriment of their reason, I never renounced what I regarded as my duty towards the other Germany, the real Germany. (…) Nazism represented the enemy within. Hitler had to be defeated so that Germany might live.” Willy Brandt: In Exile, p. 100f.

Willy Brandt, who served as Mayor of West Berlin and then German Chancellor, voiced here an idea that was widespread both among German exiles, and prominent in both West and East Germany: The Nazis didn’t represent the “real” Germany, but were oppressors of the German people. This view was particularly widespread in different sections of the Left.

On another end of the left spectrum, the Stalinists’ definition was “Fascism in power is the open, terroristic dictatorship of the most reactionary, the most chauvinistic, the most imperialistic elements of finance capitalism” (Dimitroff, 1935). This obviously implied that the German people were the first victims of a conspiracy of evil forces.
This “definition”, athough it is actualy more of a propaganda slogan, denies the rather obvious fact that National Socialism in Germany was a genuine mass movement. The “socialist” element in its ideology is deemed pure demagogy.

Both views, the social democratic and the Stalinist, are merely examples of a broad front of similar opinions which permeated the German exile community, and became a prevalent force in the post war years, when they helped re-integrate Nazis into different post war societies. [Read more →]

West of Eden: Communes and Utopia in Northern California (Book Review)

“West of Eden:
Communes and Utopia in Northern California”
(PM Press, 2012):
A book review by Nemeton

PM Press was founded in 2007 by Ramsey Kannan, who also founded AK Press in 1987 in Stirling, UK, along with several other members from AK including Craig O’Hara. PM Press is located in Oakland, CA and AK Press now is also primarily operating out of a large warehouse in Oakland, as well as maintaining a continued presence in the UK. Both publishers print numerous books on the same topics including anarchism, globalization, direct action, class struggle, the environment, subculture, and many more. In 2012, PM Press has already published over 100 titles in various formats (books, pamphlets, tshirts, dvds, cds, etc). PM Press has published some books in English translation that were not available before such as “Fire and Flames” by Geronimo about the history of autonomist movement in West Germany in the 1970s to 1990. [Read more →]

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