Sunday, August 16, 2015

Keep On Ruinin'...

I had the good fortune to see Self Made Monsters again the other night. Cramped into a tiny backroom of a nameless local bar they managed to whet my appetite for some much needed authenticity. It always does me some good to see the Monsters engage and enlighten, even if only with a tiny handful at a time. The quizzical and smug looks of those peeking in on the action only to weasel away served to affirm my belief that even in the dark recesses of the underground the lumpen punker will always prefer to swill at the trough of a palatable pablum.

Lead Monster Eddie Ford and I were discussing recently how we've had to endure a certain amount of hate and derision from people online. Now to be completely candid, he and I both have been guilty of hurling our own individual brands of hate and derision online as well, so we surmised we should expect to - if not get as good as we give -  expect take one on the chin every now and again. I at least try to temper comments of my own with a modicum of depth and reason (which probably still doesn't raise me above much more than just another random troll - but hey, I give myself credit for effort). I cannot always say the same for those who target me. 

I've been accused of a lot of things - some of which I must shamefully cop to - but a bold-faced pathological liar isn't one of them. The recent flap over a cheaply produced "biopic" film of a local musician sorta confused me. Sadly people such as me - who once counted themselves friends and allies - have been left to feel dismissed and disregarded in this selfish pursuit of attempting to achieve legend without actually putting forth the requisite effort. Same-said local musician made a very concerted and concentrated effort to remove individuals from his life that would've surely cast the looming shadow of suspicion over the accuracy of the film. To be sure, I seriously doubt any one of us would wish for their life to held to public scrutiny or examination. However if you're going to open yourself up for public exhibition, you better be prepared to face the consequences and critiques. Moreover, when you display yourself in an openly fraudulent manner before people who've known you all your life - you really better be ready for the consequences and critiques.

A co-conspirator of this nonsense once called me a 'sycophant' for helping Jeff Clayton. When I consider how frequently Clayton and I disagree and argue - and how widely known he and I are to have done so - it sorta makes me wonder if said accuser even knows what a 'sycophant' is. Because given his own eager efforts to attach and elevate his own name with Clayton's it would seem the accusation at the very least, hypocritical. His involvement in the aforementioned indie film project underscores this point. GG Allin somewhat presciently called him 'The Opportunist'. Another clueless bum who forever attempts to define himself not by what he has achieved (which is nothing) but who he claims to have known. The unending tired boasts of alleged friendships with random bigdealsowhat 'names' eventually led this male groupie to send a pithy email to Tremont Music Hall (which was naturally shared with everyone) touting the ridiculous and riotously hilarious claim of his own name having "market value".  

It’s also kinda ironic some people get upset when I merely state the obvious truth. Ryan McGinnis contacted me after my last blog applauding my comments regarding Chris Piegler. He felt that I demonstrated remarkable restraint and I assured him I edited out some of the more damning commentary. I'm not generally given to baseless grievance and I call the truth as I see it. Personally I felt that many of Pieglers so-called "friends" were too quick to come and grandstand on his grave in (yet another) ill-conceived and self-serving display of "unity". It turned the whole sad affair into a very hurtful exercise to people already mourning the loss of a friend. It’s very telling that those who propagated the affair still don't seem to recognize this fact. 

In the interest of full disclosure - although friendly, Chris and I didn't see eye-to-eye. He once held glowing praise and admiration for ANTiSEEN but as he became more eagerly involved with the 'scene' he increasingly grew unable (or at least unwilling) to distinguish the line of demarcation between Jeff Clayton and Joe Young  - people he had known for years -  and the darkly satirical pisstake of their art. He questioned me once about the band and their "attitude". Even after breaking kayfabe and (over)explaining it I realized he was too far gone. In truth, Chris was too easily given to the standardized political dogma practiced by kids who didn't possess the intelligence or wit to figure it out.

To the outside lay-person the petty jealousies, in-fighting and power grabs at what surely is the biggest nothing ever would ultimately seem cheap unwarranted drama. Compound this with the increasingly disturbing fact that in Charlotte, our local music writers are our local music performers. So, you can see how easily and readily objectivity and honesty is gonna get compromised and diluted. I mean talk about a conflict of interest. God forbid I daresay anything critical - lest I be an asshole...

Clearly we all suffer from the same psychosis that sets our grey matter spasmatic whenever we hear the distorted squall of electric guitar. And the sad truth is that we are all an endangered species growing older and rarer every second. The reality is I feel those have worked long and hard for what they have achieved and are due the respect and honor afforded our efforts (goddamned sycophant that I am). I will not abide those who would undermine and defeat those efforts. Perhaps I should know better (and probably do but just don't care) but speaking for myself, it is more than mere music here…

 

 right?

 

 

 

 

We're ready to burn off the summer heat with some shows across the Mid-Atlantic and southeast. September will see us trekking points from New Orleans on up to Philadelphia. All pertinent info is found at www.antiseen.com. We just confirmed a Charlotte gig for Halloween eve, Friday October 30 at the inimitable Thirsty Beaver Saloon, and its gonna be absolutely FREE. So ya got no excuse to miss out. Meanwhile we are set to finally put some new tunes in the can and hopefully have them ready for release in rapid order. Moreover some really killer unreleased stuff from the vaults might be seeing the light of day soon as well. So dontcha dare blink cause its like, all happenin' maaaaan.....