I’ve always liked The Tigerlillies ever since I heard them sing about how much fun it is to crucify Jesus. And while I felt like I could identify radical themes in their music and they certainly tended to identify with the lower classes, I can’t begin to express how happy I am to see this video of them performing for demonstrators in Greece on Syntagma Square, the battleground for Greek freedom from global governance.
And, of course, the video explains a bit about what’s been happening there, too.
The other night I went to a release party for a queer zine (with the translated title of “fags and disaster”) at a squat in Athens. One reason that I’m not looking forward to going back to the USA: the anarchists in europe listen to good music. I’m well known for my disinterest in the current fad of US anarchists listening to mainstream pop and hiphop. Nothing against pop or hiphop… I’m quite fond of both. I’m disgusted that we set up countercultural spaces, occupying warehouses or at least finding a modicum of liberty in rented spaces, and then infuse those spaces with what mainstream culture would prefer us to listen to. I don’t think it’s a coincidence that there is a higher instance of youth radicalism in Europe, where countercultural tendencies exist in more or less every music genre.
I got into this whole “anarchy” thing looking for a beautiful way to live my life and to question the fundamental assumptions put forth by our society. I didn’t get into it so I could dance with hipsters to songs with misogynist lyrics.
Anyhow, at this wonderful party in a giant abandoned apartment building in Athens, they played such good music: lots of dark wave, danceable noise, a bit of techno, a bit of gothic. Actually the above song was almost the mainstream thing I heard. I had never heard it before, though I listened to an awful lot of Portishead in the 90s. It’s so good. Industrial as hell but mixed with the kind of current dark pop sensibility one might find in The Knife or iamamiwhoami.
I used to be in a band called The Illawen, which was a two piece synth-metal outfit, with my friend Ceightie. And he’s keeping the music alive! Here he is performing O The Dark Tides of Solstice Day acoustic with The Homeless People (who, for what it’s worth, are the real deal, unless living in a car keeps you from counting as homeless).
The synth metal version is still online: O The Dark Tides of Solstice Day and lyrics are after the cut.
My friend Olga grew up to her mom listening to Agata Kristi, Nick Cave, and Depeche Mode. She says that this song is about how “black is my favorite color” and “opium just for us. No one else.” You can’t go wrong. Well, maybe you can go wrong with it, with the possible racial subtext to the video.
The above video, of a lego bank robbery, is for Victimless Crimes, the fourth track on the album. I made it with the help of my friend Raven, who provided the legos and scene design, as well as helping with the animation.