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ufoi

What a great weekend of noise, power electronics and industrial music in London! Meeting old and new friends, witnessing an absolutely fantastic two day event with lots of great acts at a very nice venue. Some notes of the weekend with pics below, sugarcoated with some one liners that I penned to my notebook during the trip.

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Thursday

I had early wake up after just three hours of sleep at 4 am. As I walked through Turku the city looked like a warzone after the 1st of May celebration. Broken bottles, broken places, vomit, shit and carbage everywhere. Some drunks were still alive and crawling the quiet streets. It was cold and snowing.

I met Pekka PT at the airport. Air Baltic took us to Riga where to our surprise we needed to spend some six hours instead of one to our connection flight to London. Coffee, bread, some chocolate, good talks. I did read Juha Jyrkäs’ Ouramoinen (Salakirjat, 2014) from cover to cover, some of the best lines of it out loud.

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Pekka PT reading a zionist rant.

Air Baltic seems to revel in Engrish. ”Exlusively on board” and ”for saftey reasons” made us smile. Some zionist had made hilarious ranting notes over an article about Israel into the airline magazine. We almost stereo-spanked an air hostess who kept on bending over next to us. She was clearly asking for it.

Gatwick express to Victoria. Lovely peaceful half an hour with a very British scenery, including the legendary Battersea powersation. After surviving some metro stations and a short walk we found our hostel and went to check the venue, the Apiary studios. Then it was time for some nourishment and we hit Raizes, a Brazilian restaurant. The place was so damn good it became our regular spot of gluttony for our whole stay.

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Members of Bizarre uproar, Sick seed, Halthan, Pogrom and Unclean met. Pogrom kindly gave us copies of Creation through destruction and The entrancing cage by Maxacan tactics. We walked back to our hostel in rain and hit our beds. There was some truly hellish noise outside but it didn’t disturb us a bit. We slept like dead soldiers of the second world war.

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Friday

I wanted to visit the St. Leonard’s, Shoreditch, church that was very close to our hostel. The place looked charmingly ramshackled from the outside and it was that also from the inside. We found impressive stocks and some pretty swastika-decoration. The place was empty, except for an army of spirits roaming around. I decided we needed to come back there on Sunday.

Swastika pattern at St. Leonard’s, Shoreditch.

Swastika pattern at St. Leonard’s, Shoreditch.

Shacks of St. Leonard’s, Shoreditch.

Shacks of St. Leonard’s, Shoreditch.

Meeting the very nice guys who arranged the event. Artists and other people arriving to the place. Soundchecks. Arrangements run smoothly, spirits high. It was clear that everything was done professionally. The venue was perfect with wonderful staff. The backstage was cozy and decorated with good taste. I think it is the coolest backstage I’ve seen in ages.

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The gig started in time, Am not as an opening act at 8 pm after Dj Andrew CPFA’s selected music. Am not (UK) blasted a great set with a thought provoking background video that dealt among other things with colonianism. Superb.

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Umpio (FIN) was the next to stand on the stage. Pentti whipped and beat the hell out of the metal junk he had collected for the set, with his trademark energy. Nice intense noise.

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Unclean (FIN) opened his power electronics set with some Finnish song, I don’t remember what, but it placed proper mood for the rest of the set. From the voice samples used I recognized Veli Saarikalle, a legendary past Finnish religious preacher, a hilarious raving lunatic. Other samples used dealth with religion, for what I remember. Proud, loud, well executed set with a nice finale of smashing the CD-player against the wall.

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Bizarre uproar (FIN) played in Helsinki just a week before this gig. If I’m correct, the set was the same including the famous masturbation/piss/shit/latex and high heels on a dead rat-video. The duo whipped more intense and electrifying set than that of Helsinki, which in itself was good. There was one confrontation between the bass player and a member of the audience who continually tried to grasp the artists instrument. One firm push from the pig-masked bassist gave a clear message and there was no more interference to his playing. The mastermind behind Bizarre uproar bombarded the audience with intense vocals like stukas in action in 1944. It was clear that the audience was happy with the result.

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I had heard lots of positive notes about Iron fist of the sun that played the next. Those notes were correct. The man, at times with headphones on his head, gave us a very delicate set with nice nyances and brilliant sounds, superbly structured together. This was definitely one of the sets that I enjoyed the most this evening.

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Dj Codex Europe closed the evening musically.

Umpio chilling out at the backstage.

Umpio chilling out at the back stage.

The Finns returned to their hostel, carrying one heavily chemically wounded comrade the whole way. The spirit of the Winter war lives, no comrade was left on the battle field.

– – –

Saturday

The day started with traditional English breakfast in the great company of Bizarre uproar, Sick seed, Shift and Iron fist of the sun.

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SSRI (FIN) opened Saturday at 3 pm. Regardless of the early starting time there were lots of people present, the place was certainly not empty. As Mika of Unclean said, Pekka PT is a ”mad genius” and this is true and it certainly was evident, again. There was Aleister Crowley’s speaking in the spoken samples. At the end of the set it looked like there was some technical trouble in the set, but there was not. The whole final part with the c-tape player, ending in smashing it, was all purposeful.

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A reliable source told Mesikämmen that this was the last gig of SSRI and that the whole project is finished, except for already agreed publications and such.

It must also be noted that Pekka was like Peter Sellers in Dr. Strangelove during the event – he played in three different acts: Bizarre uproar, SSRI and Sick Seed. I am not surprised if there were people in the audience who did not recognize all of these roles instantly. I certainly did not figure out that Sellers played three roles in the movie when I saw it the first time.

Mollusk King (UK) smashed a traffic sign with sticks and gave his clearly own kind of addition to the evening. I might be wrong and I probably am, but my first impression was that this is a guy with a background in gothic scene who has started to do power electronics.

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Shift (UK) marched to the stage at 4.30 pm. Two guys in commando beanies, military camouflage, project badges in their uniform. This was some tight stuff. It was technically well executed, provocative with middle fingers and a march into the middle of the audience. It was evident that Shift was much appreciated by the crowd, and with a good reason.

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After Shift there was a break. Dj. Andrew CPFA continued the program at 7 pm. Halthan (FIN) started his set a bit after 8 pm.

”Join Halthan jugend now” projected on the wall before the gig begun gave a certain impression to everyone present. What the audience got once the set began was a tsunami of nihilism and misanthrophy. Basse offered the audience a bottle of Finnish Salmiakki-Koskenkorva booze as a sort of communion. Quotes from Pentti Linkola were seen projected on the wall as well as some provocative pictures of Pekka Eric-Auvinen and his manifesto. Basse weared a Pekka Siitoin Kiitos-t-shirt, manifesting a sort of an egregore of many Finns in the genre. Mesikämmen approves.

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There certainly was a sense of danger in this set. I was forewarned to not be in the front row if I wanted to avoid Salmiakki-Koskenkorva being spitted on me or getting into a confrontation. I decided to take a safe position to witness it all. Niko of the Obscurex label was more brave and got duly attacked during the gig by Halthan. I later heard it was not the first time Halthan attacked him live. Damn, Basse, the next time confront a guy who is bigger than you! Anyway, maybe there is a reason why Halthan has been called the G.G. Allin of the genre. I certainly wish the man a smoother life than what Jesus Christ Allin had.

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There was a ”secret act” in the program starting at 8.50 pm. That was Pogrom (LIT). He gave us an awesome gig with an awesome background video that consistend of three parts. All of them were titled ”Solace” of different kinds. Part two was Solace of madness, part three solace of suicide. The first part’s name escapes my memory. I visually liked especially the second part with its abstact description of madness. This was a very nice set from Pogrom on many levels.

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Human larvae (GER) walked on the stage next. The long haired Teuton gave some hard threatment to a piece of aluminium and all in all gave the audience an awesome experience.

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Stab electronics (UK) started with some very strong visuals about open bodies. The power electronics bombarded to the audience matched the imagery perfectly. At that point my camera’s battery died and I went to backstage. What I heard from the rest of Stab electronics from others, it was great.

Sick seed (FIN) closed the event. As it has been clear from Sick seed’s latest gigs the project has traveled into some new areas, quite different from earlier Sick seed material. This was industrial with a twist.

A reliable source told Mesikämmen that there was a meditation and some sort of a ritual done at a quiet backstage before the gig. Instant comments after the gig from Pena of Umpio were ”weird!” and ”white boys funk!”. Maybe he has a point. There were some new tracks in the set and two covers: And the snow fell and Mutiny in heaven.

In addition to the live acts there was a large room with art videos projected on the wall, distro tables from Filth and Violence, Unrest productions and Cold spring. Lots of good stuff that made me wish my budget and luggage was bigger. Unrest productions did sell a limited edition compilation tape Hatred is nothing without action which features all the artist who were on the event’s bill. There might still be some copies of the tape left if you are interested.

During the two day event there was enthusiastic audience at least from the UK, Finland, Lithuania, Germany, Norway, Holland, Bulgaria, Sweden and Italy. The artists were brilliant, the event was professionally arranged by Filth & violence and Unrest productions, the venue was perfect. The place was packed and it can be said that it was a huge success in many ways.

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Sunday

We hadn’t had the traditional British fish and chips with Pekka PT yet, so that was in our ”must to do”-list. Before of that we went to St. Leonard’s, Shoreditch, church that we visited on Friday. The priest noted us in the opening of his sermon. I liked that. The next thing I’m going to say is that the past genius, Wesley Willis, made a great track called They threw me out of church.

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Fish and chips, we got it. And we got lots more. This was a great weekend.

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– – –

Overheard during the weekend

These one liners are mostly in Finnish as they were verbally shot during the weekend. Collected by yours truly.

Missään ei oo niin hyvää uusnatsiskeneä kuin Suomessa.

(On a phone) You come and have sex with us. We are in the London. (The other person hangs up) homoloordi…

Mä oon aina halunnut olla sun päällä.

Suurin osa mun vaatteista on Thor Stenoria tai jotain muita natsimerkkejä.

Mä yritin saada vähän rakkautta mut ei… mies käänty.

Nyt panettaa. Ei voi mitään. Joku vois auttaa.

Mä näin Carbagen keikalla ja yritin vetää käteen, mut olin niin kännissä, ettei seissy.

N: Ootteko kuullu Lykke Li:tä? Y: Mimmosta se on, vähän samanlaista kuin Jenni Vartiainen? N: Semmosta eteeristä. Y: Hyi vittu.

Täällä on vanhoja hikisiä miehiä. No bitches.

N: Hailasitteks te? Y: Ei. N: Jos on mahdollisuus hailata eikä hailaa, on ämmä tai homo.

(Siivoojasta) Kiva tehdä duunii kun kuus äijää tuijottaa.

I passed out. Which is nothing new.

Me ollaan Lontoossa. Missäs muualla me oltais? Himassa vetämässä käteen.

Kliinasin prince albertin ihan kunnolla ihan tätä reissuu varten. Ihan turhaan.

N: Jätkä kaivaa munia koko ajan. Y: No kun mulla on tää herpes.

N: Kattokaa, natsi. Y: Eiks täs oo aika monta?

Genitaaliherpes. Sä et voi panna enää ketään.

Genitaaliherpes. Tietsä mul ei oo yhtään sympatiaa sua kohtaan.

Ei tää yhteiskunta pyöri silleen et mä kannan sun kassuja.

Mä en oo saanu pillua moneen kuukauteen.

I’m not like you. You collect veneral diseases.

Haluuksä koskee mun munaa?

I’m a fucking working class hero.

I need bestiality.

Cocaine buffet and black prostitutes.

Mä yritin vetää käteen siinä edessä (Bizarre Uproarin keikan aikana) muttei ottanut eteen kun olin niin kännissä.

Mun aivot lilluu läskissä.

Pekka tuo erektiovarmuuden.

Me ollaan kaikkein saastaisimpia, alhaisimmista alhaisimpia.

Vitun pullee jätkä jolla on himonussijan viikset.

Homostelua. Jos ei kaupan laitteet kelpaa, ei tarvii soittaa.

(Soundchekissä) Tuntui hyvältä. Tuntuks susta kans?

Thaimaassa on paljon paremman näkösiä lady-poikia.

(Jättää lautaselle ruokaa) N: Ajattele kehitysmaan lapsia. Y: Nimen omaan.

Nyt on asiat huonosti kun nekrutkin vittuilee.

Tämmösen vuoteen kun sais mikitettyä.

(Anglikaanikirkossa muita paikalla olijoita kommentoiden) Jumala tarvitsee mustiakin enkeleitä.

N: Tän kebab-paikan hygienia-rating on 5/5. Y: Ite printattu.

 

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pekkaquarthonn

Mesikämmen oli epäillyt tätä asiaa jo pitkään.

Hiljattain asiaan tuli vahvistusta: Legendaarisen ruotsalaisen black metal-yhtye Bathoryn edesmennyt nokkamies Quoarthonn otti nimensä Pekka Siitoimen ruotsinnetusta Musta Magia osa I:stä (1974).

Alkuperäispainos Musta Magia osa I:stä, sivu 55:

bathory

Sivun viides rivi vasemmalta, alhaalta päin: Quorthonn. Siinä se.

Eräs Mesikämmenen ystävä kertoi ystävänsä kertoneen aikoinaan näin: When I heard that Quorthon of Bathory took his name from one of his books (also Equimanthorn is taken from Pekka), things just started spinning even more…

Mesikämmenen ystävä oli todennut tähän tälle edellä mainitulle näin: Mikko Aspa of Freak Animal said that he remembered an interview of Quorthon from 90’s in which he said he had taken his name from a book ordered from a Finnish dealer (=Siitoin?).

Nyt kaivataan Mikko Aspan kommenttia asiaan…

Mestari Siitoimen vaikutus ulottuu vuosi vuodelta laajemmalle kuin kukaan koskaan uskalsi ajatellakaan…

Päivän levy: Ensimmäinen Bathoryn täyspitkä.

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boydrice2012_4There was an interesting headline in the news few days ago: “ABBA Founder: Godlessness Makes Sweden’s Pop Music Great“.

This reminded me of my private conversation with Boyd Rice.

It went like this:

Mesikämmen: “Funny little detail – someone found my blog with search words “IS ABBA ABRAXAS?”

Boyd commented: “THEY COULD BE! ABBA is a name of God!”

Indeed, it is.

Song for the day: ABBA: Does your mother know?

– – –

Related:

Boyd Rice speaks!

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I guess everyone who knows a bit about the Finnish noise scene is familiar with Pekka PT. The man has been around for quite a while with his many projects. In the following interview you will find out about Pekka’s many projects and sources of inspiration, of what Otto Donner did during one of his gigs, what former Death In June member Patrick Leagas said about his vocals, of what is good and bad noise like, of noise scene in Finland and elsewhere, as well as of what Pekka thinks about spanking, G.G. Allin, Pekka Siitoin, toilet humour, and of many other things!

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Pekka PT speaks!

019bIf this interview could take place anywhere, anytime, real or imaginary space, where would we be making this interview?

The place where they’re waiting for Godot.

Who are you, what do you do? Could you tell us about your background, all the projects you’ve been working with and being part of? Which one of those projects has been the most important to you – or should they be considered first of all as an organic whole?

I’m Pekka PT, I’m over 30 but under 40 years old and I live in Southwest Finland. I’m underground noise musician, family man and blue collar worker.

My main project at the moment is called Sick Seed. It’s power electronics with heavy industrial leanings and some noise thrown in as well. What I do is structured, pretty much song-oriented material with lyrics that handle my different interests.

Then there’s SSRI, which is harsh noise with psychedelic and industrial elements. I felt that the relatively strict approach of Sick Seed wasn’t enough and needed another outlet for my noise doings.

The two above are a continuation of my earlier noise project Gelsomina. It started as a pure harsh noise project with an aim to make as pure and “radiant” noise as possible. Having accomplished that, or at least having worked on that as long as it was satisfying, I moved to more organic, lo-fi, industrial sounds and moods and then came a time when everything was so different it was time to shed skin and begin a new project. Gelsomina did several releases in different formats and some of them were even somewhat critically acclaimed.

Paraffin Affiliates was a free-noise improvisation band in which I played guitar. We released one CD-R album and played a few gigs.

Skullpture was another improvisation band but with more drone approach and mostly done with guitars. We did a few CD-R releases. We were and still are good friends, but as far as I remember, all the recording sessions were frustrating and very unfriendly for some reason.

Speaking of old projects, there’s Clay Figure, which was my first serious recording project. No-limits four-track experiments. This project did a few CD-Rs and tapes, started to turn into a real band and then folded, but now I’ve resurrected it and done a comeback tape and there’s more to come. There’s a chance that I might merge Clay Figure and SSRI at some point but we’ll see.

There’s also Peenemünde, which is a collaboration project of Pentti Dassum and me. Industrial noise. We have one CD out and a second one coming up sooner or later.

sickseed5I play guitar and sing in scum metal noise rock band Chains Of Death Command. It started at first some years ago and we did one tape and forgot about it. Now the band has been resurrected with slightly different line-up and we’ve released one 7” and played one gig, recording of which will be released on tape very soon. The first tape will also be reissued since it was very limited and people have asked about it. We’re currently working on new material and there are plans for a couple of split releases.

I’m a session member of Verde, which is a kind of experimental electronic krautrock laboratory. Studio and live line-ups have featured a lot of different musicians from underground amateurs like me to professional and academically educated musicians. This band is always great fun. Hopefully we can release a new CD some time this year.

I’m also a session member of Johannes Faustus, an artrock band that just released its first album and we’re starting to rehearse for (possible) gigs soon.

There are/have been some others but they’re either just beginning or meaningless past. Besides, aren’t all those listed more than enough?

Priorities of projects change, but at the moment Sick Seed, SSRI and Chains Of Death Command are the most important ones. But yes, it’s all also an organic whole. Ars Magna. There’s a lot of overlap and I often recycle sounds and ideas from one project to another.

I have an impression that your projects’ names are well thought to describe their contents – is this correct? Would you tell us something about how you came up with the different names for your different projects.

Absolutely correct.

The name Gelsomina was chosen because it was very “non-noise.” I took it from the movie La Strada, which I was obsessed with, especially the Gelsomina character, at the time.

gelsominaSick Seed was first the title of Gelsomina’s “sex noise” tape. When I decided to quit Gelsomina and move on, I felt the continuing project needed a more suitable name. At the very beginning it was very much connected to sexual frustration and deviance and that’s what the first Sick Seed tracks were about. The scope did broaden quickly, though, and now it’s more about social “issues” and personal search. Self-therapy. There’s sick seed in me that needs to be discharged before it eats me inside. There are many things around that have grown from sick seed and there are malevolent forces that sow sick seed.

SSRI officially means selective serotonin reuptake inhibitors, but it also means Sick Seed Recycling Industries. Most sounds that I use on SSRI are recycled and reworked from my other projects.

Clay Figure name was taken from a pic I saw in some art book long ago. There was this installation titled “35000 Clay Figures on a Field” that had a room full of small, crude clay figures. I was first going to use that full name but luckily came to my senses. Clay is material that can be easily molded and it has this earthy quality and working results in amateur hands are often very crude, so it was perfect for what I was doing musically with that project.

On the other hand, I think all these names have started to live lives of their own, separate from their original meaning, ideas and connections.

In addition to noise releases you have put out a quality live c-tape of Keuhkot. What’s the story behind that release?

Keuhkot tape was released by Arkisto, a label that I run in co-operation with Pentti Dassum of Umpio, Nekorekords and many other things. It’s dedicated to reissues, unreleased unearthed old material and authorized live bootleg recordings. There’s not much of a story and I wasn’t personally involved in anything. Pentti had that recording and he acquired permission from Kake Puhuu for a release.

Who and what have been and are your biggest influences and sources of inspiration as an artist?

More or less directly influential bands/artists at the moment: Einstürzende Neubauten (until Tabula Rasa album), Con-Dom, Vivenza, Etat Brut, early Merzbow, latest Grunt albums, Brethren, Eric Lunde, early Swans, K2, early SPK, Brume, Nurse With Wound, early Contagious Orgasm, IRM (mostly lyrically), etc… Lots of “early” stuff it seems. Everything was better before and the first demo was the best.

My early noise influences were C.C.C.C., Incapacitants and Borbetomagus but I’m not very interested in any of them anymore.

Writers, thinkers, people, etc.: William S. Burroughs, J.G. Ballard, Philip K. Dick, Robert Anton Wilson, Samuel Beckett, Stephen Baxter, Louis-Ferdinand Céline, Aleister Crowley, Uuno Kailas, Kurt Vonnegut, Alan Moore (especially Promethea), Grant Morrison, Neil Gaiman, etc…

Other things: Dada, Discordianism, Surrealism, Vienna Aktionism, Art Brut, science/speculative fiction (everything from serious/hardcore to total pulp trash), The Church of the Sub-Genius, Chaos Magick, Tarot, occultism in general, 1970s and 1980s exploitation cinema of all kinds (other cinema as well, although I’m not nearly as big a film freak as before), Gnosticism, abandoned buildings, decomposition, metal objects scraping concrete surfaces, survivalism, etc…

sickseed2What kind of instruments and equipment you use in making noise?

Anything, no limits, although I usually prefer a physical sound source. Metal junk with contact mics, synths/oscillators, effect pedals, bass, guitar, tape manipulations, anything. It often goes in phases where I concentrate on one instrument or source of sound for some time and then move on to something else when I feel I’ve got out everything I can at that time from one thing.

The only common thing with everything is that I do final editing on a multitrack software on computer.

How many gigs you’ve done thus far and where have you performed? Most memorable gigs, incidents, memories in general from these gigs?

All bands and projects combined, I’d say around 50 or a little more. Not much but there aren’t that many opportunities for this kind of music. Nor will I play just anywhere. I’ve played in pubs’n’clubs, private venues and festivals. Mostly in Finland but Gelsomina did a small UK tour and Paraffin Affiliates played in St. Petersburg once.

Most memorable gigs are Verde playing at Kaustinen Folk Music Festival and another Verde gig at a musician friend’s birthday party where we were spontaneously joined by Otto Donner. When Gelsomina played in London, former Death In June member Patrick Leagas commented that my vocals sounded like Hitler. There have been good and bad times at gigs, but luckily mostly good.

What tapes and CD’s of your own creation are available currently and where one can get them?

Sick Seed’s debut album The Great Corrupter is available from me in both LP and CD format and the label (Filth & Violence) should also have them. There’s also a tape version coming soon. Sick Seed Live + 1 tape is available from the same label as well as from me. Man And Machine 7” is available from me and the label (Turgid Animal). I don’t have copies of Elephant Man tape left but the label (Obscurex) should have. The same label also has Peenemünde CD and Unclean / ABNTR / SSRI split tape and you can get those two from me, too. Shift / Sick Seed split LP and CD are available from me and probably from label (Freak Animal) and Shift as well. I also have plenty of copies of Chains Of Death Command 7” and last two Verde CDs.

– – –

Noise and the scene

How you listen to noise? Is c-tape the only true format for it?

sickseed6Either I concentrate on it fully or play it as background music for reading. I think noise should be listened to loud enough so you hear all the details. Listening to it REAL FUCKING LOUD isn’t necessary to me though there’s time for that every now and then. Good noise works at a reasonable volume, too, I think.

C-tape is traditional format and it’s still the most reasonable for small editions that noise releases usually are. Some noise fits better on tape, some on vinyl and some on CD. I don’t care what is “true” and what is not, especially since things described as true kvlt grimmfrostbitten are usually everything but.

How do you define ”noise”?

I’d rather not, but if forced at gunpoint, I’d say something like music, sound art or “aural object” that abandons melody, harmony and rhythm and replaces them with loud, abrasive, dissonant sound. That’s a crap definition, I know.

What do you listen to in noise?

Sound, details, interaction of different elements, composition, rhythm (not in “beat” sense). I’m not necessarily looking for originality but it certainly does no harm.

Why you listen to noise?

I like it, simple as that. It speaks to me. It interacts with what I have inside me. It’s the sound of destruction and building, decomposition and growth, full cycle, aural Alchemy.

How much you listen to noise in relation to other kinds of music you listen to?

I think I listen to other kinds of music much more than noise although it goes in phases, too. I haven’t noticed any certain times, situations or states of mind that would define what I want to listen to. It seems completely random.

Is noise music?

I think it is but what is music?

What is good noise like? What is bad noise like?

PekkaPTlive4Good noise is done because it has to be done, bad noise because it can be done. As said above, originality is not necessary but I loathe old farts who ride on their past and shit out one scene product after another. I don’t mind humour in noise unless it’s some post-modernist ironic piss-take. Good noise is passionate, bad noise is a product for target audience with no heart, brain or balls.

If one listens to noise a lot does it mess one’s ”biorhythms” and body up? Will plants die at home?

No, it heals them. Plants also, no need to water them anymore.

What are noise artists and listeners like – is it possible to make some general notes about them? How homogenous are these people in their age, style, political views, approach to life in general, etc.?

Male, 20-40 years old, background in other kinds of underground music, interest in “cultural extremes,” politically/ideologically either nihilist or into one extreme or another. That’s a broad generalization off the top of my head and there are exceptions. Education and family relations seem to vary a lot.

What do you think of the scene nowadays here in Finland and elsewhere? Where do you think the most interesting artists come from right now?

Finnish noise scene has been extremely strong for some years already and seems to continue that way. There’s a lot of variation in styles and people do their own thing instead of copying others or following trends. Most newcomers are very promising and bring something new to the table.

I can’t say much about scenes abroad since I don’t (have a chance to) follow them as closely. There’s been a lot of good stuff coming from Sweden all the time but it seems they’re now more productive and enthusiastic than ever.

You can talk about German style or UK style power electronics or Japanese noise or US noise, even Swedish sound but I don’t think there a special Finnish sound. Maybe it’ll take a foreigner to point out what it is?

I’d say everything from Finland and Sweden is worth checking out these days, with other countries there’s much bigger percentage of hit and miss.

Noise scene has its controversial elements, maybe especially in live settings. Have you been at some gigs where you were worried about the act in one way or another? Have you experienced or heard or seen of some noise act that you think did develope into something unacceptable or such? How people inside the scene approach these elements? How often artists just play with controversial elements because of shock value, how often there is some well thought points and intentions behind them?

sickseed1Some time ago I saw a performer cut a deep gash on his arm with razor blade. It looked bad (and actually needed 30-40 stitches afterward), but he just kept playing and rubbed blood from the wound on his face and equipment.

Once someone had a backing video of extreme pornographic material at an all-ages gig. I was sure there would be consequences but apparently there weren’t minors present or nobody cared. Another time someone had a backing video that showed cumshots on dead/dying rodents. That did cause some fuss, which was no wonder as it was a kind of crossover gig with plenty of unsuspecting audience.

I agree there are controversial elements but I don’t think they exist to the degree that outsiders and/or newcomers often think. It’s those elements that easily get anyone’s attention so it’s no wonder. I can’t say what’s the ratio of shock value (nothing wrong with trying to shock people, it’s just the attempts are usually in vain – most noise listeners are very much jaded) and serious content but I think it’s rather easy to spot who’s playing with taboos and controversial elements and who’s into them for real.

How are you inclined politically and ideologically? Did you vote in the last presidential elections?

I used to think I’m “Third Position,” but I’m not sure what it means anymore… I believe in individual nation states with their own customs and characteristics instead of one big consumerist multicultural sewer. No one should be ashamed of their heritage and no one is responsible of their forefathers doings. I’m anti-plutocratic, anti-globalization, etc. Most importantly anti-stupidity and anti-evil.

I did vote in presidential elections. My candidate was the one I thought would be the smallest evil. He wasn’t elected.

– – –

Associations

What the following things and persons bring to your mind?

Turku

Finland’s true capital.

Sweden

Bögjävlar.

Freedom

Is it freedom to (do) something or freedom from something? Either way, I doubt it really exists.

Hippies

People who ask you for cigarette, get angry when you don’t have any and then pull a pack out of their own pocket.

UFO’s

I’ve never seen one, which doesn’t mean they wouldn’t exist.

Jodorowsky

Influential film director, thinker and magickian.

USA

Scapegoat for things everyone’s guilty of.

Firearms

We had hunting and sporting guns at home when I was a kid. I lively remember the sounds their moving parts make. The sound of authority, responsibility and respect.

Sauna

Peace and relaxation.

G.G. Allin

Hero and embodiment of free spirit.

TV

Vampire, both psychic and physical.

Nuclear war

Obsolete.

Pekka Siitoin

Another hero and free spirit, the Great Blasphemer and True Man.

Spanking

For naughty boys and girls.

Genesis P. Orridge

Once a pioneer, now something else but I’m not sure what.

Cryopreservation

Useless. Life is here and now.

Hate crime

Carnivore put it well: “Xenophobic tendencies instilled in us at birth are mislabeled racism.” I think “greed crime,” ie. economic crime is much bigger problem and root of all other crime.

Death penalty

Ultimate means for state to use its power.

Toilet humour

…or no humour at all!

– – –

Future etc.

How your own music and approach to it has changed or developed during these years? Where do you think you are going with your music in the future?

PekkaPT5I’ve of course become more skilled and have tried a lot of different new equipment. I’m also not that interested in most extreme noise anymore, but moved towards more organic industrial sounds. I used to aim at sound that’s radiant like sun, if that makes sense, but now my ideal sound is that of decomposition and rotting, that of wood creaking, that of shoveling earth.

Starting to use vocals with Sick Seed and already in the end of Gelsomina was a big step. At that point I felt confident enough to start shouting and also that I could write lyrics that are good enough. I think I write good lyrics already but I want to become even better. I’d also like to use more varied vocals (not melodic singing though) in the future.

Can’t say for sure where I’m heading but I’d like to become better in cut-up techniques and learn to use different kinds of tape machines better. I’d also like to keep experimenting with combining noise and “real” instruments but it’s a slippery slope. I’m a guitar player at heart so I’d like to practice guitar more and utilize it more in my recordings.

How do you see the future of noise in general?

Same as its past. Art, entertainment and subculture for a small circle of people.

What kind of plans or visions you have for your distro? What kind of releases and publications we will see in the future? Do you have confirmed gigs in the future?

If everything goes well, there will be Mania / SSRI split tape and K2 tape out in February. There are more planned releases but I won’t talk about them yet lest they get jinxed one way or another. Next Arkisto release will be a Sewer Pyysalos tape (total cut-up insanity, their two CD-Rs reissued) and there are some very interesting relics waiting for Arkisto treatment so stay tuned.

pekkalive6As for gigs, there will be a Sick Seed record release party in autumn or early winter and there’s been talk of one gig abroad in spring 2014 but we’ll see. I’ll also perform as a member of Sonno Ferrum, a kind of “metal junk super band,” in May.

What makes you happy?

To crush my enemies, see them driven before me, and to hear the lamentation of their women. That and quiet family life.

– – –

Thank you for the interview, Pekka!

– – –

Some related links:

Pekka’s distro Untergeschoss.

– – –

Keikkaraportti: Live: SSRi, Umpio @ Kirjakahvila, Turku 28.9.

Live: SSRi @ Kirjakahvila, Turku 28.9. (1, 2).

– – –

Pekka PT – Gelsomina/Hard & Obscure/Sick Seed interview.

Untergeschoss 2012 interview.

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Arkisto / Umpio / Nekorekords.

Filth & Violence.

Freak Animal.

Obscurex.

Shift / Unrest Productions.

Turgid Animal.

Verde.

– – –

 

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Boyd Rice 2012. Photo: Mute Records.

I had my first contact with Boyd Rice in the early 90’s after hearing his appearance in Bob Larson’s radio show. I wrote a letter to Boyd (there were no emails or internet in general use back then) who replied and kindly sent me a copy of Abraxas newsletter.

Years passed. The last year Boyd declared that the Church of Satan was dead. Soon after that I made an interview with Larry Wessel who had made a documentary film called Iconoclast about Boyd. At this point I was already thinking that an interview with Boyd would be great and the idea was cooking up.

Finally, after some 20 years since my first contact with Boyd, I contacted him again. He was fine about an interview to the blog and I started to make questions. The interview was made one question at a time over some two months. When the interview began I had no idea about Boyd’s upcoming gig in Helsinki, Finland – that created a whole new dimension to the interview!

In the interview Boyd talks about his current projects, the Church of Satan, Anton LaVey, Bob Larson, Iconoclast, pranks, reincarnation, Scandinavia, ABBA, Finland, architect Eero Saarinen and many other things.

Without further ado, ladies and gentlemen, Boyd Rice speaks!

– – –

Present

Hi Boyd, how are you doing?

I couldn’t be better. Just redecorated my apartment and painted my black walls metallic silver. It took weeks, but it’s amazing! Life is good. My girlfriend is moving in with me and we’re making room for her shoes.

If this interview could take place anywhere, anytime, where would you take us to talk?

I used to know a french scholar who had the keys to Jean Cocteaus apartment in Paris, and it hadn’t been touched since Cocteau died and this guy really wanted me to see it. That would be the fetishistic fantasy place. Unfortunately this guy got some deadly disease and ended up killing himself. So I guess my modern answer would be my own apartment here in Denver. Or perhaps The Madonna Inn.

There is a new book out from you, Twilight Man. Tell us about the book, what is it about, where to get a copy?

It is about my life in 80’s San Francisco and how I came to develop a sense of “cultural pessimism”, I guess. It hasn’t gotten a bad review insofar as I know. People find it a fun read, even though it is ugly and brutal.

You can get it on the internet or just ask God for a copy…

There is also a biography under work about you. Who is the author, when can we expect to get the book into our hands?

Nina Antonia. Her Johnny Thunders bio is being made into a movie in Hollywood, so maybe someday when I’m dead there will be a movie too. We can hope…

Talking a bit more about books, you are one of the authors who have been ripped off by Creation Books. What do you think, will there be any chance of getting “James Williamson” to court to face justice for the fraud he has committed?

I seriously doubt it.

What is the most interesting book you have read lately? Why it was interesting?

The last book I read was the Nina Antonia bio of Johnny Thunders. It was interesting because his life was interesting and because Nina’s a great writer and brings a lot of insight to her subject-matter.

– – –

Boyd with Anton LaVey. Photo: Carl Abrahamsson.

Church of Satan

How your first meeting with past Anton LaVey went? Where did you meet, any special jokes, wisdoms, or other notes about the meeting to share with us?

Anton met me at a film festival I was associated with and invited me to his house. I went over the following week and went back every week until I left the city. The stories he told me are all in his bio, which was essentially dictated to Blanche as he told them to me.

You wrote the last year a text where you declared yourself a High Priest of the Church of Satan and in the same text you also declared that the Church of Satan doesn’t exist anymore. This naturally caused some talk. I haven’t seen any reply from the Church to you regarding the text anywhere but I guess you have been receiving some feedback privately. What kind of feedback you have received? Has Peter H. Gilmore said anything about your text?

Of course not. Gilmore is a pussy. Everyone in the C.o.S. loves me and are bored to death of him and he knows it. Anton had a very dark heart and it sickens me to see people whitewash him and present his creed as pure rationalism. He was larger than that.

Rationalism and mysticism cannot co-exist. The latter speaks to soul oriented values and to the unknown (which man is trying to fathom). The former is a conceit that lets man think he has a handle on everything (he doesn’t). I would go so far as to say rationalism is the ultimate lack of logic. It certainly has no place in “occult” doctrine.

I think it’s easy for Gilmore to misrepresent LaVey because he didn’t really know him too well. I was at the Blackhouse all the time.

I think it’s easy for Gilmore to misrepresent LaVey because he didn’t really know him too well. I was at the Blackhouse all the time. That’s why I will defend Anton till the day I die, and that’s why I take the stance I do on the modern C.o.S…

I heard from a scholar of comparative religions the last year that Gilmore works or has been working in a Walmart, in a not so high position, while holding the status of the High Priest of the Church of Satan. I think there is nothing that special in someone working in a Walmart per se, but if someone is a High Priest of a church that is, or gives an impression of being, all about “might is right” and power in this world, this seems a bit amusing. Do you know if the claim is true? What kind of thoughts this brings to your mind in general?

I seriously doubt that is true, but a lot of people with a power philosophy have to punch a time-clock, that’s just the nature of the world. At least they have the notion of rising above that and in time perhaps they will. But anyone wishing to criticise Gilmore needn’t tell lies about his job… but rather point out how he’s bastardizing ASLV’s thought.

What do you think Anton would think of Gilmore and others who run the Church of Satan nowadays? What would he say to them?

Much what he said to me when he was still alive – that they were what Stalin called “useful idiots”. He’d hate people trying to cast him in a “good light”. He often said to me that he wondered why Satanists wanted to present him as a Good Guy. “I’m not a good guy” he would yell, “I’m a miserable sonofabitch!” That’s the LaVey I knew.

And he was much darker, very much darker than anyone is willing to admit these days. He was brutal to the max. That’s why I still love him so much… he was maybe the last unapologetic figure of the 20th century.

Whether LaVey agreed or not Satanism was a cult of personality. C.o.S. sans LaVey is like fascism without Mussolini… and a cult of personality requires someone who has a personality. It currently lacks that.

Whether LaVey agreed or not Satanism was a cult of personality. C.o.S. sans LaVey is like fascism without Mussolini… and a cult of personality requires someone who has a personality. It currently lacks that.

I think LaVey’s big mistake was to violate one of his primary directives… to assume others are like unto you and capable of the same things as you are. And they’re not. Elitism is not something you should mass-market. You can of course and it will be very successful. But it will never work out. That to me, with certain notable exceptions, is The Church of Satan today. I hope this will be my last commentary on all this. And I’d be willing to bet they wish the same!

What do you think of satanism nowadays? Has it lost its potential it once had? Do you still consider yourself a satanist – or is there nowadays a better, more updated term to describe the same individual spirit?

I rarely ever “think of satanism” unless asked about it in interviews. But since you asked, I think it is fundamentally flawed in certain of it’s basic premises. I don’t agree with the primacy of individualism any more than I believe that all men were created equal. If individualism existed (which I seriously doubt) I’m not sure what function it would serve. This was an idea which had great appeal in the post-50’s decade of conformity, but has since then not produced much of value in real world terms — more especially in the C.o.S. where it is a fundamental principle. And within that group everyone dresses alike, speaks alike and thinks alike… all based on a mass-market paperback from, what, 40-some years ago?! Am I missing something?

I rarely ever “think of satanism” unless asked about it in interviews. But since you asked, I think it is fundamentally flawed in certain of it’s basic premises.

By the way, I said much the same thing to LaVey when he was still alive, and he had to concur with me. He found it rather depressing. His exact words were “I’ve created a monster”.

– – –

Iconoclast and things involved

Larry Wessel made a lenghty documentary Iconoclast about you that came out the last year. What do you think of the film?

Four hours of me me me has got to be great by anyones standards. But again, it was an attempt to whitewash me and present me as Mr. Fun. That is part of the story, but not the whole story. But most people seemed to like it.

I noticed that you bought and used in the film some nasal snuss. What is your favorite brand? How about the regular “under-your-lip”-type of snuss that you can get f.e. in Sweden and Norway?

I like Gawith Apricot Snuff, Dr. Rumneys, & McCrystals Violet Snuff. Don’t care for chewing tobacco or dental snuff.

I also like Al Capones Vanilla Snuff, which I’ve only ever found in the Leipzig train station.

One of the things that comes to mind from the film is the great spectrum of things where you have been involved with artistically and otherwise over the years. Is there something that you still would have liked been included in the film or excluded from it?

I’m not particularly bothered either way. That film is from two years ago at least and not me or anyone remembers what was or wasn’t in it. At least it wasn’t boring.

One of the more surprising things in the film were your thougths about reincarnation – you said in your talk with Bob Larson that you consider nowadays that a reincarnation might be possible. Do you still think that way? What has made you to consider that reincarnation might be possible?

I’ve always known things that I’ve never been taught. At a very young age my son said to me “when you were a child I was a man, now I’m a child and you’re my father”. This seemed quite odd to me at the time. When I visited my fathers sister a week later I told her of this conversation, and showed her a picture of my son. She said that the strange red marks my son was born with on his nose were identical to the scars on my grandfathers nose that he got when his model T truck was driven over a cliff. This sort of thing is very common in tales of reincarnation. As a child I had very specific memories of things and places I had never experienced. When I asked my parents why I had these memories they told me they were probably only dreams, but I knew they weren’t.

I’ve always known things that I’ve never been taught.

I still think ideas like genetic memory or ancestral recall are valid, at least in some cases, but my actual theories about reincarnation are too complex to explain in a format like this.

Bob Larson is featured in the film among many other persons. Your encounter with him in the film is pretty different from the early 90’s radio shows where he interviewed you. Has your view of Bob changed during this time? Do you think Bob really believes in the stuff he talks about or is he really like P.T. Barnum, as you once stated in his radio show?

Bob has been extremely consistent ever since he published his first book, in around 1970 or something. I don’t think you can fake something like that for over 40 years. I met his father one time and he was a True Believer. Of course Bob is a showman and understands how to play his audience. So was Anton LaVey… and P. T. Barnum. Nothing wrong with that!

What do you think of teenage girl exorcists Bob has apparently trained into the job? Is Bob a little bit dirty old man or is this just about the showman part you mentioned?

I think it’s pure showmanship. But it would make a good premise for a TV show — a sort or christian Charlies Angels.

In the film you tell about some of the pranks you have done, for example the famous goat head prank. What do you consider as your best pranks ever? Who are your favorite pranksters alive nowdays?

We snuck into a good friends house and left a bottle of maple syrup in his refrigeratator. It came in a bottle shaped like an old woman, and the incident totally freaked him out. He began carrying a gun with him everywhere the very next day. But the best pranks are when you draw someone into an absurd world of your own making and your fantasy becomes their reality, even if just for a short time. Therefore, the best pranksters now are mainstream politicians because that is their full time job. They are the best, because they’re the best conmen, but not necessarily my favorites.

– – –

Scandinavia, ABBA, Finland and the future

NON gave a live show in Norway the last year. How was it? 

It was great. A lot of people from Finland traveled there to see it and a lot came to my show at The Roundhouse in London. I am looking forward to my visit there. See you soon.

You are an ABBA fan. What’s cool about ABBA? Do you have a big ABBA collection?

I have enough obscure ABBA songs that I could put together an entire album… songs that the band didn’t really release because they considered them imperfect or too weird. But of course the worst ABBA song is better than the best songs from a lot of bands. I wanted to cover them and put out an album called ABBA LEAD (as opposed to ABBA GOLD). I pitched the idea to Rose McDowall, but she didn’t seem interested. Shame… because that could have been huge.

The worst ABBA song is better than the best songs from a lot of bands.

That is a shame, indeed! Maybe she will change her mind about the project one day… I think you would make a fabulous cover of “Waterloo” and “Does your mother know” with maybe a bit changed lyrics. What do you think of this in addition of making covers of ABBA’s more obscure songs?

Don’t ask. None of this will ever happen anyway.

You are going to have a concert in Helsinki on 6th of November this year. This is the first time you’ll have a concert in Finland. What are you expecting and hoping from your visit here? How long you’ll stay here, any places you plan to visit, etc.? What kind of associations Finland brings to your mind?

I met people in London who flew all the way from Finland to see my show at the Roundhouse, and more people in Norway who did the same. So I’m looking forward to my trip there and have wanted to see it for a long time.

I recently met the daughter of Saarinen, and found out there is some sort of Saarinen museum just outside Helsinki… I’d love to see that and anything connected with the man or his family. He’s my favorite architect.

What kind of projects you are working with nowadays? What can we expect from you in some near future?

Most of this year I’ve been working on a book of my art for a British publisher — paintings, photos, montages & graphic design. It’s nearly done. Later this year a number of my essays are coming out in Outre Journal out of Australia. I also just filmed some scenes for Richard Wolstencroft’s new film The Second Coming, which is based on the poem by William Butler Yeats. I just returned from NYC where I spent time in the studio recording some new stuff. So I keep busy…

What makes you happy?

Animals make me happy… prairie dogs, foxes, squirrels and cats… coatis, bunnies, capybaras and kiwis.

But I still love consternation. I still love pissing people off. I love knowing that my very existence causes certain people great discomfort. And they deserve it… in spades!

– – –

Thank you for the interview, Boyd!

Boyd Rice will perform at Kuudes Linja in Helsinki on 6th of November. You can buy tickets to the concert from Tiketti. Facebook page for the event can be found from here.

– – –

Related links:

Boyd Rice/NON official webpage.

Boyd Rice/NON official Facebook page.

– – –

Related previous posts:

Boyd Rice live at Kuudes linja, Helsinki, 6th November.

Church of Satan is dead.

Boyd Rice: An Embodiment of the Wolf’s Hook.

Larry Wessel speaks!

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This time we have an interview with a real living legend, Mr. Methane, from the United Kingdom!

Mr. Methane is a superhero, a professional flatulist. There has been only one of his kind in the known history before so we are talking about a really rare kind of an artist here. Mr. Methane puts art into fart.

If you are not already familiar with Mr. Methane, here is some info from his website Mr Methane – The King of Farts!:

“Mr Methane Is No. 1 for farts, farting video and fart related comedy!

Mr. Methane is a Performing Flatulist or Petomane, he performs the Art of Controlled Anal Voicing employing the same technique as 19th Century French man Joseph Pujol aka Le Petomane. He has performed his Fart Artistry at the worlds top comedy festivals in Montreal, Melbourne and Edinburgh as well as many public and private shows for exclusive clients.

Mr. Methane has also showcased his Performance Farting on many TV and Radio Shows during his long and illustrious career. Howard Stern called him, “A true Genius. A huge star!”

He further tells us that “basically I possess the rare ability of “singing” from both ends, putting the “art into fart” rock, pop, and classical selections are included in my musical repertoire which, combined with a stunning visual display of… Candle snuffing; talc blowing, and the incredible… Dart farting, guarantees a reaction from any audience.

Apart from the many TV & Radio Shows and there have been a lot over the last 20 years – about a hundred TV shows and many, many more radio shows both here and abroad – I’m usually as a rule booked for private parties, corporate events, festivals, student unions and nightclubs looking to book something unique, different and unusual. The type of people who book me come from across the whole social spectrum, children to royalty, barristers to builders, students, mums and dads. My humour crosses all of society.

I’ve literally “worked my passage” around the World with Live appearances in Europe, North America, Canada, Asia & Australia, including performances at the worlds top comedy festivals in Montreal, Edinburgh & Melbourne.

In Stockholm I am the act that blew open the doors of censorship, launching Swedish TV into a new open era with a rendition of God Save the Queen in front of the Swedish Foreign minister. In Austria I am the “face” of an Austrian anti racism advert and Down Under I hold the record for the most complaints received by an Australian TV station after “singing” Happy Birthday to former World No1 Tennis Player, John Newcombe on Channel 9s Footy Show.”

I guess you got the picture, right? Without further holding, Ladies and Gentleman: Mr. Methane speaks!

– – –

For the starters

Greetings, Mr. Methane! It is an enormous honor to interview you, a living legend! How are you doing?

I’m ok thank you, I’m just recovering from a busy week of farting for Japanese and Spanish Television. Talk about working your passage.

How has your life changed since you decided to become a professional flatulist? Was it a difficult decision to make? Were you worried what your relatives would think of your choise of career? Did you guess how famous you would become?

My life has changed enormously, I don’t have the vast wealth of an A List Movie or Rock Star but my way of life over the last 20 years has absolutely no resemblance to the life I had when I was in an non show business occupation.

It wasn’t a difficult decision to make in the end as my career as a train driver for British Railways was coming to an end, the moral of the work force was low, the relationship between the staff and management was very poor, the Government and Margaret Thatcher in particular didn’t like the rail industry or its workers. It was a dying industry constantly contracting more and more with each subsequent year. All in all it wasn’t a satisfying organisation to be working for, definitely not enriching to the soul, certainly not a creative job, just awful clocking on and off hours and a bad overall feeling of no future due to all of the foregoing.

My mother Died in 1988, after that I wasn’t worried about what anyone else thought. You could say “I threw caution to the wind!”

I had no idea about how well recognised I would become, although I wouldn’t say I’m at a Hollywood movie stars level of fame, I’m quite blown away at the amount of profile my bottom and I have achieved in so many different parts of the world.

What is so funny about farts? Why do we laugh at them?

Its all down to our social etiquette, what your society believes you should and shouldn’t do in company and peoples feelings and reactions when someone does something totally natural that their social rules say they possibly shouldn’t. I remember Kelsey Grammer when speaking in defence of me at the Montreal Festival said, “Its the first thing in life that we laugh at and possibly the only thing that we can always laugh at”. Despite those fine words farting is still a social taboo for many and the ridiculous nature of all this fuss over something natural makes it funny.

Its all down to our social etiquette, what your society believes you should and shouldn’t do in company and peoples feelings and reactions when someone does something totally natural that their social rules say they possibly shouldn’t.

Besides of fart jokes, what kind of comedy, humor, you like? Any special shows, actresses or actors, etc. to name?

I used to like Monty Python a lot as a youngster. I also liked some of the alternative stuff that came in the 1980’s like Kenny Everett and “The Young Ones”. Moving into the 90’s Harry Enfield and Paul Whitehouse were great and Pete Watermans appearances on “The Hit Man & Her” were always good for a laugh but looking back its Jims Bowens Bullseye, Minder with George Cole, Lovejoy, Bargain Hunt with David Dickinson, The Two Ronnies, Dads Army, George Formby, Fred Dibnah, Bruce Forsythe, Morecambe & Wise and the early Carry On film cast of Sid James, Kenneth William etc. that really stand out and last the test of time. Not all were comedians, some were comedy actors, others like Dibnah were steeplejacks whose way of life was documented on TV.

If I have to choose a No1 though its Morecambe & Wise, a British double act who really only appealed to a British audience and weren’t that famous anywhere else, their ability as musical hall variety entertainers & TV stars is unsurpassed but if their fan base is anything to go by you have to be British to appreciate it. Then again ask me tomorrow and it might be Dads Army.

Is fart humor universal? Are there places on Earth where farting is generally not considered funny?

I once lost a talent contest in Japan to a Korean Uni-cyclist. The Japanese audience saw his craft as bodily discipline and mine as bodily indiscipline. With the Japanese audience being into the discipline side of the coin, I lost the vote as they didn’t conceive the fact that to fart on command was infact in my case a discipline or craft, they just thought I had a dietry disorder and was blowing off all the time. At the end of the show members of the audience were shouting “Booooo!” I thought they must be the ones who voted me off but what I didn’t know at the time was that “Boooo” in Japanese means “Very Strong Wind” so I did in fact have some friends in the audience who saw me as a disciplined Ninja of Flatulence rather than a man who had ate too much cabbage.

Life as a flatulist

You are apparently the only person in the world today who is a professional farter. There has apparently been only one professional farter before you, Mr. Joseph Pujol (1857-1945). Why is it that there has been no more professional farters in the world? Certainly there must be people out there who know the technique involved, right?

There are other people like me and Pujol who have the skill or the powers of Controlled Anal Voicing but not everyone wants to go public or is a showman. Couple that to the fact that it is a niche market where the openings for public performances are not in the same volume as for say, a Tina Turner tribute act, then you are well on your way to getting to the bottom of the show business farting conundrum.

If there are some persons out there who know the technique and have been considering to try a career as a flatulist, what kind of supportive words you’d have for them?

Strain hard to make sure your career doesn’t go down the pan. I’m 46 this year so the World needs some Fresh young farting talent that can come along in a few years and fill my shorts when I eventually hang them up.

Do you train your farting skills regularly, practise new songs, etc? Are there some health related benefits, disadvantages or dangers involved in your profession?

I find it gets harder as I get older and I have to keep Farting Fit with specific yoga stretches and exercises in order to preserve my powers.

I’m a bugger for sticking to what I know works best and not trying new stuff. Last week I farted the Macerena on Spanish TV, it was they who requested it and me who had reservations. Even in rehearsals I was not sure it was fart friendly but then when VT rolled just like Tom Jones I rose to the occasion and delivered a very sincere and authentic interpretation of a Spanish classic. Not that I’m saying Tom Jones sounds like my arse, I use his name as he is a pro, the top of his game, a singer who always rises to the occasion and delivers a top quality performance when the chips are down. – just thought I’d clarify that to avoid any misunderstandings.

You have been on Finnish TV at least twice, in Älä katso in early 2000 and in Jim Salabimin Taikashow in 2010. How your visits here went? Did you enjoy your stay here? Any special memories of Finland?

I remember my first visit in 2000 I was struggling with a hemroid, looking back at the show now on youtube you wouldn’t know it but every time I farted it was like tooth ache in my anus. I love watching this show on youtube but for some reason I think they left out my performance of “It’s Flatulation” in the final edit which is a shame as I was busting my ring on that gig.

On my second visit in 2010 it was very very cold it being February. I enjoyed landing at Helsinki and also Tampere on the snow & ice covered runways, I also enjoyed the very laid back feel of the show and as time was allowed for overruns in filming I ended up with a spare day to go sight seeing in Tampere which is always good as so many times you are just in and out with no time to get a feel for the country you visit.

In general I like Finland, Norway & Sweden. The air is clean and fresh, the towns are clean and tidy, the design and architecture styles are clean and tidy (IKEA), the country’s are not overcrowded and life is on the whole seems more civilised and socially inclusive than the UK. OK I know the tax is a killer but you can’t have it both ways.

In addition to Finland you have been performing in many other countries worldwide. Where you’ve been, what have been the most memorable performances thus far and why? Are there some places where you’d really like to go perform?

I’ve done all the EU countries except maybe Luxembourg. Japan, Australia, America and a few Middle Eastern countries.

I think Sweden stands out. Apparently I changed the face of Swedish TV when I appeared on The Robert Aschberg Show and farted God Save The Queen in front of their foreign minister. Never before had such a thing been seen and never again would Swedish TV be the same ever again.

Australia really goes for the live shows, they love a display of Controlled anal Voicing, its the country where I can really get bums on seats.

The USA is another country where I’ve been well received thanks to USA commercial radio and people like Howard Stern, Drew & Mike, Dom & Mike and Beth & Bill. People would to come to my shows in their hundreds. Unfortunately during the time of George Bush junior as president a new regulator was appointed at the FCC who interpreted the regulations about what you could and couldn’t do on radio more stringently. Stations were suddenly afraid to have a man on their show who could break wind at will, so my USA radio appearances dried up and consequently the bottom fell out of my live show market in the USA.

I once performed at the opening of an art exhibition in Switzerland called “AlpenDuft” = Smells of the Alps. It was an official champagne style reception with the local dignitaries and the mayor presiding over the ceremony. For my part I Performed a selection of traditional Swiss folk songs accompanied by the horn section of the Bern Philharmonic Orchestra as part of the ceremony.

Apparently I changed the face of Swedish TV when I appeared on The Robert Aschberg Show and farted God Save The Queen in front of their foreign minister. Never before had such a thing been seen and never again would Swedish TV be the same ever again.

Is fart humor more popular among men than women? What kind of women are into farts – are they of more intellectual type?

Definitely more popular among men. In terms of women its usually intelligent or aristocratic ladies that like a good guff.

Do you have lots of female fans? Groupies? Does Mr. Methane get laid a lot?

Its not Rock & Roll by any means, you certainly don’t have to nail the hotel door closed at night but I would be very uncomfortable if it was, on the odd occasions I have experienced that sort of thing I’ve felt very uncomfortable, the whole groupie thing really isn’t my scene.

Have you had any ”accidents” during your performances?

Yes once at the Sportsman’s Inn, Hyde, Cheshire many moons ago I went all the way and caught a bear in the net. Last week on Spanish TV during the Macerena was a close call as well but I managed to avert disaster or at least downgrade it to a Shart.

You took part in Britain’s Got Talent in 2009 and performed Blue Danube in the show. That must have make your star even brighter – have you got more gigs and other offers after being in the show?

My appearance was more of a Statement about the show than a genuine audition, I think that’s possibly why Simon Cowell looked so pissed off. Looking back although I knew the panel would look down their noses at me it hasn’t done me any harm, in fact its done me a lot of good and a lot of people actually envy me for having had the opportunity to fart in the direction of Simon Cowell, Amanda Holden & Piers Morgan.

I’m always surprised how seriously some people take the show and its characters, as if it isn’t loosely scripted, slightly fictional, manipulated or presented in a certain way. Its all about making good TV so any good production company or TV station will always try to manipulate or influence events to get the best and most controversial outcomes.

What do you think Simon Cowell, Piers Morgan and Amanda Holden really thought about your performance? Surely they just pretended to not like your amazing act, right?

I think I’ve just covered this in above paragraph.

As for Piers and Amanda, they laughed uncontrollably and then were unable to comment leaving Simon to deliver his line. I can’t prove it was scripted but I can say I was invited to apply for the show and they knew I was coming.

Talking about Britain’s Got Talent 2009 – I was thinking it would have been awesome if you would have done a duet with Susan Boyle! What would be the song of your choise for a duet with her?

Someone not associated with me was going to mash an edit together and put it on youtube but they got cold feet when Susan was taken ill and went into care after the finals. Suddenly it wouldn’t have been funny at that time as I think she was suffering from mental illness and exhaustion. Had things been a little lighter then maybe Sonny & Chers, I’ve Got You Babe would have been a crowd pleaser.

If you could perform with any artist you’d like to, who she/he/they would be? Any special songs in mind?

Sinéad O’connor is in her own words, “A Massive Fan” – She once bought all her friends a Mr. Methane DVD & CD for Christmas – So I think a duet of “Nothing Compares To You” would be good, maybe re worked and called, “Nothing Compares To Pooh!” Only trouble is Prince or at least the artiste formally known as Prince owns the song and he might have a bit of a problem signing off on the idea.

Sinéad O’connor is in her own words, “A Massive Fan” – She once bought all her friends a Mr. Methane DVD & CD for Christmas.

Have you considered participating in America’s Got Talent? Based on what Howard Stern, a judge in the show has said, you might end up in the finals there! What do you think of this?

They did invite me to try out a few months before BGT made the call but unfortunately I’m not a US citizen so by their own rules it couldn’t happen and it wouldn’t make sense. Tonight on Americas Got Talent here’s a guy all the way from the United Kingdom called Mr. Methane. Mind you on seconds thoughts they do say the UK is the 51st State so maybe there isn’t a problem.

Ah, yes, silly me. Are there some types of events where you would categorically refuse to perform? What if someone would want to hire you to perfom in some political event, wedding ceremony, funeral, or other such ”serious” event? Would you go?

I’ve done all sorts of events over the years but if my bottom is going to be used to endorse a political viewpoint or point criticism at someone on behalf of someone else I’m not up for that. I have my own personal opinions but as Mr. Methane I entertain all and don’t take sides.

See here for an example: “Britain’s Got Talent” – farting around causes national outrage in Romania.

I’ve done all sorts of events over the years but if my bottom is going to be used to endorse a political viewpoint or point criticism at someone on behalf of someone else I’m not up for that.

What have been your peak moments in your career thus far?

Probably the launching of my website and the release of my home movie Mr. Methane Lets Rip and my CD Mr Methane.com have to be the high points for me as I think the website and my merchandise have been my most valuable promotional tools.

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Future

What kind of plans you have for the future? New records, gigs, TV-appearances, or such? New appearances in Finland?

I’d like to get a budget to develop the Mr. Methane animation idea into a full blown series of fully animated adventure cartoons. I’m also planning to release an album of National Anthems very soon on itunes, this will be a digital release as the bottom has fallen out of physical CD sales.

You have made the record for the longest recorded fart in history – 59 seconds! Are you planning to break the record some time soon?

I believe that many people dispute my record and a problem is that many years ago when I wrote to the Guinness Book of Records the Editor blew my request out saying such an endeavor wasn’t suitable for inclusion in his book. Consequently all records are unofficial and open to interpretation and counter claim so unless some proper rules are established its probably not worth having another blow at it just yet.

What would you like to say to all of your fans reading this interview?

I’m not sure really as everyone gets something different out of Mr. Methane and his Colon Coughs but maybe just to say if I’ve helped raise your spirits, restored your faith in humanity, entertained you and helped get you through a difficult day then that’s what Mr. Methane is all about and its been a Gas doing so.

What makes you happy?

Peace, tranquility, nature and the natural environment. I’m not a materialistic person.

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Thank you very much for the interview, Mr. Methane!

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Related:

Mr. Methane website / Facebook / MySpace / Twitter / YouTube / iTunes / Wikipedia.

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Every now and then I’ve thought if Aleister Crowley ever visited Finland. He did, after all, visit Russia. It’s not too far fetched to consider him stepping on the ground of Finland on his way to Russia. Nevertheless, mentions of Finland in books of or about Crowley I’ve read of are almost zero – and I’ve read quite a few of them over the years.

I finally came across a book that mentions Crowley and Finland. Richard B. Spence writes in his Secret Agent 666: Aleister Crowley, British Intelligence and the Occult (Feral House, 2008):

By the time Crowley left Cambridge in summer 1898, he had steered far away from a diplomatic career, the orderly life of an English gentleman, and most other conventional paths. He had become a seeker of spiritual enlightenment, and to that end a student of occult wisdom and practises. A critical early experience occurred at the end of 1896, a spiritual crisis or mysterious “calling” he experienced while visiting Stockholm. What he was doing in the Swedish capital is a mystery. British records show that Crowley received a passport on 28 December 1896, just in time for the boat to Stockholm. Curiously, British subjects did not require a passport to visit Sweden or much anywhere else. One place that did require the document was Russia, and Stockholm was a main transit point to Russian-ruled Finland and thence to St. Petersburg. Could Crowley’s “crisis” have been a tyro spy’s jitters over a pending mission?

Again, there is no solid proof about the Beast in Finland. No photos, no records of any kind to support the possibility.

Spence’s book is, by the way, a very interesting piece. When I first heard of it I thought it was some sensationalistic nonsense about “Crowley the spy” without credibility, but I have needed to correct my views on that later. I mentioned Spence’s work previously in my review of Tobias Churton’s biography of Crowley.

Some years ago there was some talk in the internet in a Finnish forum about Crowley having an illegitimate child in Finland. I’ve not heard, seen nor find anything credible to support that claim. As wild as the claim is it is not impossible either, but there is absolutely no proof for it. I regard the claim currently just a baseless claim, a wild but certainly an entertaining idea. Any thelemite in Finland would love that claim to be true, I think, but most likely the claim is just a wild idea someone got into his head and just put it out in the net.

To strech the subject a bit – It’s not unheard of that a big esoteric name would have had an extramarital child with a Finn. G.I. Gurdjieff, a contemporary of Crowley, had a child with one of his most loyal follower’s (Dr. Leonid Störnval) wife. A very interesting book by the late child is available: Nikolas de Val (Nikolas Stjörnval): Daddy Gurdjieff: Quelques souvenirs inédits. The subject is also touched upon in an academic paper that is part of the publication called Western esotericism (based on papers read at the Symposium on Western esotericism held at Åbo, Finland, on the August 15-17, 2007. Ed. by Tore Ahlbäck. Pargas: Tibo-Trading Ab. Scripta Instituti Donneriani Aboensis 20).

Well, at least some more or less thelemic stuff is coming from the UK to Finland that can be proved. Current 93 will perfom at Savoy Theatre, Finland, on 18th of March this year.

P.S. Check out also the recently published The Drug and Other Stories by Aleister Crowley. It has foreword by David Tibet, the frontman of Current 93.

A song for the day: Current 93: Earth covers earth (Mesikämmen used to have this on vinyl back in the 90’s).

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