Sat. April 30
(Le Grand Mix, Tourcoing)

Sun. May 1
(The Pit's, Kortrijk)

Thu. May 5
Awesome Tapes From Africa dj set
(Treehou5e Open Air, Ghent)

Fri. May 6
Invisible Hands / Neil Michael Hagerty & The Howling Hex / DSR Lines
(Vooruit, Ghent)

Sat. May 7
(De Ruimte, Ghent)

Tue. May 10
(De Pit's, Kortrijk)

Thu. May 12
(DOK, Ghent)

Fri. May 13
(Het Bos, Antwerp)

Sun. May 15
THRONEFEST (Taake, Inquisition, Mgla, Batushka, Inferno, Dysangellium, Wiegedood & The Commitee)
(Kubox, Kuurne)

Thu. May 26
(Den Trap, Kortrijk)

Fri. May 27
(Trix, Antwerp)

Wed. June 1
(Botanique, Brussels)

Wed. June 8
(Vooruit, Ghent)

Wed. June 22
(Het Bos, Antwerp)

Sunday, December 31, 2006


I have listed my favourite films of 2006 on my site. As in 2005, I didn't see a single movie that I think was a downright masterpiece. Still, I did see a lot of great movies. 2006 was a strange year: Almodóvar's latest got halfhearted reviews while I think that 'Volver' is one of his very best. The same can be said about Alejandro Gonzáles Iñárritu's fascinating 'Babel'. On the other hand, I really don't understand why movies like 'Children of Men' and 'United 93' were regarded as masterpieces. Oh well, opinions are like assholes, remember?

The 38th International Film Festival Rotterdam has announced its two filmmakers in focus : Hong Kong director Johnnie To (Breaking News, Election) and Abderrahmane Sissako (Heremakono, Bamako). On first sight, a bit of a letdown after the wonderful homages of the previous years (Kinji Fukasaku, Nagasaki Shunichi, Stephen Dwoskin, Girish Kasaravalli, Jean-Claude Brisseau, Guy Maddin, Stan Brakhage).

Monday, December 18, 2006

Favourite Live Shows of 2006

copyright Garage Savage

With only one show left (The Hipshakes), it’s time for another year-end roundup:

  1. GREEN ON RED (03/09/06 – N9, Eeklo)
  2. THE INTELLIGENCE (07/05/06 – Pit’s, Kortrijk)
  3. WILLIAM PARKER & HAMID DRAKE (30/10/06 – Damberd, Gent)
  4. KING KHAN & BBQ SHOW (14/01/06 (+Fredovitch) - 10/04/06 (+The Magnetix) – Pit’s, Kortrijk)
  5. THE SEATSNIFFERS (14/01/06 – N9, Eeklo)
  6. DIGGER & THE PUSSYCATS (14/03/06 – Pit’s, Kortrijk)
  7. THE KIDS (01/04/06 – Den Tap, Kortrijk)
  8. LINVAL THOMPSON/THE CONGOS (05/08/06 – Reggae Geel)
  9. JACK OBLIVIAN & HARLAN T. BOBO (04/11/06 – Lintfabriek, Kontich)
  10. NAPALM DEATH (05/11/06 – Nijdrop, Opwijk)

Sunday, December 10, 2006

While my pal Tom is exploring Mali, I found myself listening to some rather obscure but delightful Malinese records from the recent past:

Kulu - N'GOU BAGAYOKO (Frikiyiwa, 2002)

Recorded by Frédéric Galliano in Bougouni in January 2002, this is some truly wonderful Malinese finger-picking blues with great female guest appearances by the likes of Maïmouna Keita, Maï Sanogo, Fanta Koné and star Nahawa Doumbia. Subtle and echanting music for the bon vivants among you.

Déli - BALLAKE SISSOKO (Label Bleu/Indigo 2000)

Together with Toumani Diabaté, Ballaké Sissoko is probably the best kora player of the new generation. Mama Draba is younger and lesser known abroad than Kandia Kouyaté, Amy Koita or Oumou Sangare but still one of the great performers of the epic Griotic Bambara and Malinké traditions. (Also check out Ballaké Sissoko's follow-up album on the same French label called "Tomora" and his collaboration album with Toumani Diabaté called "New Ancient Strings")

Segui – DJELIMADY TOUNKARA (Label Bleu/Indigo 2001)

The guitar hero of Manding music and one of the founding members of the Super Rail Band (a modern electric group, financed by the Malian Railway Company and comfortably installed in the Buffet Hotel de la Gare in Bamako to entertain the youth of Bamako as well as foreign visitors and Heads of State). On “Ségou”, Tounkara is backed by an acoustic outfit with superb female choruses. (Also check out his follow-up album on the French Marabi label called “Solon Kôno”)

Jako Baye – ADAMA DIABATA (Stern’s Music 1995)

Mesmerizing Wassoulou music by one of the new Malinese divas. A wonderful clash between acoustic and electric guitars, between traditional kora music and electric programming. The song “Sabafolo” must’ve been made in heaven. A contemporary classic!

Wednesday, November 22, 2006

Beat Expo festival

Last Saturday, I attended the first Beat Expo festival in Ternat near Brussels. Because of a rather obscure bill and cutthroat competition from Dick Dale headlining a Roots Night in Antwerp, the venue was barely half-full (say 150 people). Afterwards, people told me Dick Dale was boring as hell, but heck, what else did you expect? The Beat Expo however was great! The fact that the hall wasn't packed, created a cosy atmosphere, some kind of intimate rock 'n' roll party for the in-crowd. I missed THE AMBASSADORS, a local band from Antwerp and the second band, PRESTON PFANZ & THE SEATON SANDS who featured 2 members from The Thanes, played very boring Shadows-like instrumentals (The Twanging Wankers would have been a more appropriate name!). Next was CURLEE WURLEE!, a band from Düsseldorf whose enthusiasm made up for a total lack of decent songs. It was party time nonetheless and the band set the tone for the rest of the night. Some of you might know the Italian band THE HORMONAS from a 7-inch on Shake Your Ass Records but I myself had never heard of 'em before and was very impressed by their 120mph psycho-rockabilly trash. The female drummer as well as the rest of the band (including stand-up bass - yeah!) played very very tight and the songs were top-notch. I am really looking forward to their upcoming album on Billy's Bones Records! THE THANES from Edinburgh treated us on some mighty fine tunes: this was beat punk par excellence! Their cover of Dylan's "It's All Over Now, Baby Blue" might as well be my favourite live moment of 2006 (together with Jack O & The Tearjerkers godlike rendition of Booker T & The MG's "Time Is Tight"). Check out 'Evolver', their great 1987-2001 songs collection on Rev-Ola Records and cherish this band for the rest of your life! The headlining MORLOCKS (it was already 1.30AM) didn't disappoint to say the least. OK, it was a rather unbalanced set but Leighton was fun to watch, the guitars were loud & mean and you don't get to see many 1980s garage-revival bands who still can stand the test of time, right? So yeah, if you like The Fuzztones, The Stooges or The New York Dolls, fat chance you would've loved The Morlocks set! Anyway, some Morlocks footage of Saturday's show can be found here. Hopefully, there's still some courage & cash left for a Beat Expo II next year...

Saturday, November 18, 2006

Paul Vernon's iPod Delta Blues

There's a great feature in the latest issue of fROOTS magazine where blues connoisseur Paul Vernon selects his favourite prewar blues songs. Here's the complete listing :

  1. Cotton Field Blues – Garfield Akers
  2. Mississippi Bottom Blues – Kid Bailey
  3. Saturday Blues – Ishman Bracey
  4. Future Blues – Willie Brown
  5. Fare Thee Well Blues - Joe Calicott
  6. Jailhouse Blues – Sam Collins
  7. Down The Big Road Blues - Mattie Delaney
  8. Bullfrog Blues – William Harris
  9. My Black Mama – Son House
  10. Got The Blues, Can't Be Satisfied - Mississippi John Hurt
  11. Devil Got My Woman – Skip James
  12. All Night Long Blues - Louise Johnson
  13. Preachin' Blues – Robert Johnson
  14. Cool Drink Of Water - Tommy Johnson
  15. The Gone Dead Train - King Solomon Hill
  16. Mississippi Jail House Groan – Rube Lacey
  17. Shake 'Em On Down - Tommy McClennan
  18. Sittin' On Top Of The World - The Mississippi Sheiks
  19. So Cold In China – Issiah Nettles
  20. Friar's Point Blues – Robert Nighthawk
  21. Down The Dirt Road Blues - Charley Patton
  22. Catfish Blues - Robert Petway
  23. Outside Woman - Blind Joe Reynolds
  24. Farrell Blues – Henry Sims
  25. Motherless Child Blues – Elvie Thomas
  26. Bedside Blues - Jim Thompkins
  27. Sic 'em Dogs On Me – Bukka White
  28. Get Away Blues – Robert Wilkins
  29. Baby Please Don't Go - Big Joe Williams
  30. Last Kind Words – Geeshie Wiley

Big sale at Document Records!

There's a big sale going on at Document Records. Until the 31st of January, there are 109 CDs on offer. If you are looking for more information about the CDs, go to Roots&Rhythm and search for 'Document'. Some of these CD's are highly recommended. This is a terrific deal!

Saturday, November 04, 2006

Boogie Nights!

Roel Bentz van den Berg

Stoffer & Bentz are back on the air! They have a one hour show every weekday which can be listened to online here and here. I treasure so many records that I first heard at their legendary radio shows! Check it out!

Handy Boxes

I finally found great & handy boxes for my 7-inch collection at IKEA for a mere € 7,00. Me happy!

Friday, November 03, 2006


picture by Johan Malot

On August 9th 2003, I saw a free jazz trio that totally blew my mind. It happened to be my first visit to the yearly FREE MUSIC XXX festival in Antwerp and for the last time, this small festival took place in a cosy little theatre. The Trappist beers were dirt-cheap and the ambiance was superb: about 250 jazz-aficionados were ready and waiting for some musical adventure. The first two bands were interesting nonetheless: MIKE (Mike Goyvaerts, Willy Van Buggenhout, John Edwards) as well as FRED & IVO (Fred Van Hove, Ivo Vander Borght, Maurice Horsthuis, Michel Doneda) took us on an experimental but very enjoyable musical ride. The headlining band however was no other than powerhouse trio PETER BRÖTZMANN, WILLIAM PARKER and HAMID DRAKE who put the audience in some kind of musical trance during the next 2 hours. It was one of the most impressive concerts I have ever witnessed. The spiritual majesty of the music left me speechless.

Last year, I saw this amazing trio again, this time at the Kunstencentrum Vooruit, and it turned out to be another fabulous gig. Parker had brought along his 8-string doson ngoni (traditional hunter's guitar from West Africa), Drake proved his master ship on a gigantic hand drum and Brötzmann scribbled incredible high notes on his alto clarinet. Again, I was totally mesmerized by the raw beauty of the music. It was unlike anything else I had heard before: some kind of exciting mix between world music and free jazz, without the ugly fusion element or the academic dullness. This music was ruthless, fierce & challenging.

Last Monday, Parker and Drake played another show at the Damberd café in Ghent, this time without Brötzmann. Between 2 long jams (one called 'Vietnam III' and another was a tribute I think to Dewey Redman), Drake played the gigantic hand drum and sang wonderfully (I think Moroccan). After some time, Parker changed his bass for what I think was a ghaita, a Moroccan folk oboe, and both master musicians took us to unknown territory. The gig started late and lasted until 1.45 AM. Yet, nobody left the place during this mind-blowing 2,5 hours session. Killer!

Some of the best music by William Parker and Hamid Drake has been released on the wonderful Aum Fidelity label from New York. The CD's as well as the shipping costs are very reasonably priced and label owner Steven Joerg is a terrific person to deal with. Do check out some of the fabulous music made by these fantastic musicians. You won't regret it!

Monday, October 16, 2006

Flanders International Film Festival - Ghent

EYES WIDE SHUT (Stanley Kubrick) ****

RABIA (Oscar Cardenas) ***

REQUIEM (Hans-Christian Schmid) ****

BLISS (Sheng Zhimin) ***

FROZEN CITY (Aku Louhimies) ***

SLUMMING (Michael Glawogger) ***

EL VIOLIN (Francisco Vargas Quevedo) ****

2001 : A SPACE ODYSSEY (Stanley Kubrick) ******

SALVADOR (Manuel Huerga) **


FIREWORKS WEDNESDAY (Asghar Farhadi) ***

SEHNSUCHT (Valeska Grisebach) *

LA PERRERA (THE DOG POUND) (Manuel Nieto Zas) ***


NOCTURNES (Henri Colomer) *

CLEO DE 5 A 7 (Agnes Varda) **

MADEINUSA (Claudia Llosa) ***½

TRANSYLVANIA (Tony Gatlif) **

PRINCESS (Anders Morgenthaler) **½

OFFSIDE (Jafar Panahi) **

LE DERNIER DES FOUS (Laurent Achard) **½

ANCHE LIBERO VA BENE (Kim Rossi Stuart) ***

AND STILL I BELIEVE (Mikhail Romm, Marlen Khutsiyev & Elem Klimov) ***

A SHORT FILM ABOUT THE INDIO NACIONAL (or the prolonged sorrow of filipinos) (Raya Martin) *

SHORTBUS (John Cameron Mitchell) **

DIGITAL SHORT FILMS BY THREE FILM MAKERS 2006 : TALK TO HER (Darezhan Omirbayev, Eric Khoo & Pen-ek Ratanaruang) ***

LUCY (Henner Winckler) ***


FIRST LOVE (Jukinari Hanawa) ****

LES OISEAUX DU CIEL (Eliane de Latour) *

OUBLIER CHEYENNE (Valérie Minetto) **

4:30 (Royston Tan) **

Friday, September 01, 2006

TAXIDERMIA - György Pálfi

I don't feel like writing a review of the Cannes 2006 shocker TAXIDERMIA so here's the press info that should wet your appetite. Taxidermia is definitely a Hungarian cult-classic-in-the-making. You really must see how György Pálfi films the vulgarity with incredible cinematography. Mmm... delicious!!!

Taxidermia contains three generational stories, about a grandfather, a father, and a son, linked together by recurring motifs. The dim grandfather, an orderly during World War Two, lives in his bizarre fantasies; he desires love. The huge father seeks success as a top athlete -- a speedeater -- in the postwar pro-Soviet era. The grandson, a meek, small-boned taxidermist, yearns for something greater: immortality. He wants to create the most perfect work of art of all time by stuffing his own torso.

Historical facts and surrealism become intertwined as magical realism, like in the works of Gabriel García Marquez or the Hungarian writer Lajos Parti Nagy; the script is based on two of the latter’s stories. Palfi added the third story, that of the grandson the taxidermist.

The first section begins with a disembodied voice pontificating obliquely about creation and three generations, explaining that if something has to end, the beginning has to be important. Immediately we see the grandfather, Vendel Morosgoványi (Csaba Czene), who is berated by his lieutenant in a remote outpost, with only the lieutenant’s fat wife and two beautiful daughters around. He retreats into the realm of gratification, no matter how extreme. He peeps in the daughters’ bath, drinks the girls’ dirty bathwater, masturbates until his penis emits flames of fire, and sleeps with the lieutenant’s wife. She becomes pregnant and the lieutenant blows off Vendel’s head — but raises his child, Kálmán.

In the second part, Kálmán (Gergõ Trócsányi) has become obese and competes for Hungary in eating competitions that their backers hope will be recognized by the International Olympic Committee. Against a backdrop of empty Communist spectacle and military poseurs, Kálmán strives to win. He meets up with an oversized woman, Gizella (Adél Stanczel), another speedeating competitor, and the two get married, although she has sex with his teammate during the wedding party. She and Kálmán embark on a long honeymoon, returning to their respective factories to practice. Gizella gives birth to a tiny, tiny son, Lajos.

Section three, which is contemporary, is calmer, less manic than the previous two. Lajos (Mark Bischoff) has become a quiet taxidermist who has no prospects in love; he is rejected by the supermarket cashier, for one. He is as frustrated in his way as his grandfather was in his, but Lajos’s fertile imagination will prove to work in a very different way. His father, Kálmán, has reached enormous proportions and can no longer move. Kálmán’s wife has long ago left him, so Lajos brings food and cleans the apartment where Kálmán (now Gábor Máté, in a fatsuit) sits amidst boxes of food and the three cats he pushes to overeat. One day Lajos finds Kálmán dead, possibly having exploded from overeating or having been mauled by one of the cats. He stuffs him, and immediately after, begins stuffing himself by locking his body onto a board surrounded by perfectly attuned machines. At the end of the procedure, a glass blade he has set up decapitates him and an electric saw severs his right arm. The two men are found by a customer, Dr. Regõczy (Géza Hegedžs D.), who puts them on display at a chic art exhibition. Dr. Regõczy, whose lecture is a continuation of the voiceover at the very beginning of the film, maintains that one can mount one’s father and oneself but can not mount the essence, that being what Lajos felt at the moment the blade cut off his head. The camera moves into the black void beyond Lajos’s bellybutton.

Friday, August 18, 2006

Radio = the soundtrack of your boring life

There's a little chat on the radio with some dude that talks about his 3 favourite songs. We get to hear a CURE song, a DEUS song and a PREFAB SPROUT song. Afterwards, the radio host says to the guy : "You have a very varied record collection!".

He was deadly serious.


Sunday, August 13, 2006

God Damn Tiresome Rock 'n' Roll !!!

Two bummers this week. Firstly, THE CRAMPS who played a very conventional set without any highlights at the Lokerse Feesten earlier this week. Secondly, while visiting a record shop, what sounded as a dreadful record by a third-class grunge band turned out to be the latest SONIC YOUTH album. Like my friend Danny says : "The old rockers are getting older and older and the young ones play for 50 people at the Pits, that's the future of rock 'n roll in Belgium, probably Europe...". Hopefully, the upcoming GREEN ON RED reunion show in my hometown will prove us wrong.

Sunday, August 06, 2006

Reggae Geel

The Congos

What do you get when you put PRINCE JAZZBO, CORNEL CAMPBELL, TAPPA ZUKIE, LINVAL THOMPSON, TRISTON PALMER and THE CONGOS on the same bill? Right, my favourite festival of 2006! Although Prince Jazzbo played one of my alltime favourite Jamaican tracks ("Harry Skank"), every song was put to an abrupt ending after 1 or 2 minutes with his many annoying "Pull up's" and "Take It Down's" shouts. I especially enjoyed Tappa Zukie, Linval Thompson (wonderful set) and The Congos (brilliant harmonies). Jah Mali and Sister Carol were also very good while Buru Banton turned out to be a public's favourite. Next are The Cramps on Wednesday. Right on!

Linval Thompson

Friday, August 04, 2006

I'm ready for the retirement home!

I spent the afternoon with some three hundred grannies & granddaddies in a marquee. Last year, my elderly neighbour aroused my curiosity when he told me about this convivial little folklore festival at a retirement home in my hometown. A couple of weeks ago, I checked the line-up and decided to give it a try. Well, I had a great time at what the organisers announced as 'a grandiose garden party'. Not only were the entrance free and the Trappist beers dirt cheap, the bands were great fun too!

The first band, KHUKH MONGOL from Mongolia, treated us to some great throat singing and exciting sounds that came out of traditional Mongolian instruments like the yoochin, a dulcimer with 13 double-wire strings. One piece was played on a string instrument by a young woman who sang like a 90-years old boozer. Cool!

The second band was SPANDAN SANSKRUTIK TRUST from Northern-India and began their set with a chant dedicated to the victims of a very recent bomb attack in their hometown somewhere near the Pakistan border. Besides the 4 musicians (a real Qawwali line-up with a great harmonium), there were some 20 young dancers and some beautiful Indian girls. They had a lot of fun while doing their folkloric dances and the audience loved them too!

The greatest fun was when RAIZES from the Brazilian northeast took the stage. Three young musicians played some wild roots music that reminded me a lot of the music on the Globestyle album 'Brazil: Forro - Music for Maids and Taxi Drivers'. Again, a bunch of young dancers took the stage and showed us some real hot dancing.

The golden-agers loved it and so did I. I left the place during the last band, LOUS TCHANCAYRES (men and women on stilts from the Landes region near Bordeaux, France). The band members looked rather boring and the folkloric element was overemphasized.

It was kinda weird to see all these young people from different parts of the world amusing themselves together with some three hundred Belgian old-timers. I hope this garden party will still exist when I'm an oldie myself!


Wednesday, July 05, 2006

Have a nice holiday y'all!

Me, I think I'm gonna place my tent somewhere here in beautiful Andalucia :

Monday, June 26, 2006

What is all this bitching about "Volver" being inferior to Pedro Almodovar's previous movies? Personally, I think it is one of Almodovar's very best. Ignore the critics and judge for yourself!


Since last year the European Film Festival joined forces with Filmvondsten, the summer event of the Royal Belgian Film Archive, which holds a similar view on cinema. As usual, many Cannes premieres will be shown during the first week of July. This is my personal selection before I move southwards :


Dorotheea Petra (Eva) won the prize for Best Actress in the Un Certain Regard section at this year's Cannes film festival

12:08 EAST OF BUCHAREST (Corneliu Porumboiu)

winner of the prestigious Caméra d'Or Award for best debut at the latest edition of the Cannes film festival

IKLIMLER (Nuri Bilge Ceylan)

I'm counting the days to see the third film by this brilliant Turkish director (remember "Uzak")


After "Angel on the Right," the new film from Djamshed Usmonov featuring Dinara Kroukarova

SEHNSUCHT (Valeska Grisebach)

Officiel Selection from the last Berlinale 2006

LUXURY CAR (Wang Chao)

from the maker of "The Orphan of Anyang" and recipient of the 'Un certain regard' prize at the latest Cannes festival

FANTASMA (Lisandro Alonso)

the third feature from Lisandro Alonso after the amazing "La Libertad" and the brilliant "Los Muertos"

SOLNTSE (Alexander Sokurov)

the master of contemporary Russian cinema with his latest masterpiece

I hope I will still have some time left for record reviews and packing my bags...

Saturday, June 24, 2006

Full Frontal Attack

BATTLESHIP's debut album "Presents Princess" on Mitch Cardwell's Raw Deluxe label was one of my favourite records of 2004 so when I read about an upcoming European tour a couple of months ago, I immediately contacted my pals at the mighty Pit's. "Presents Princess" was limited to 500 vinyl copies, sold out a long time ago and was released on CD a couple of months ago by On/On Switch. A few weeks ago a new 7" called "To Give, Not A Gift" has been released on Double Negative Records and Greg "Gris Gris" Ashley finished recording the new album. After witnessing Battleship on the shitty Pit's stage yesterday, I think the new album is going to be a totally different experience than the first one. Live, the band blasted out some maniacal spazzcore in the vein of Melt Banana and The Locust, gone were the Gang Of Four-like rhythms of the first record. Still curious about it though...

Monday, May 22, 2006


In Italy for thirty years under the Borgias they had warfare, terror, murder and bloodshed, but they produced Michelangelo, Leonardo da Vinci and the Renaissance. In Switzerland, they had brotherly love; they had five hundred years of democracy and peace - and what did that produce? The cuckoo clock.

Harry Lime (played by Orson Welles) in The Third Man

Domenico Ghirlandaio 1449-1494
Fresco at Cappella Tornabuoni, Santa Maria Novella, Florence, created 1486-90.

Monday, April 17, 2006

(Let's Go) Totally Nutzoid!

I don't know how it really happened but my five-years-old kid took a bad fall on my 7-inch collection. Needless to say, I was furious not in the least because he always seems to ruin the most precious ones. At the age of one-and-a-half, he gripped the first A Frames long-player out of my record-rack and let if fall on the floor. A couple of months before, I had specially ordered the album in the States and was very glad that I received a pristine copy without bent corners. Not any longer though. Why didn't he pick the Aerobitch album next to it, or the A-Lines one on the other side? Yesterday, his main target was the amazing first Tokyo Electron 7-inch which went for $51,00 on eBay last week. N° 38/229 of the Destructo invasion from the outer space edition will be housed in a mutilated sleeve from here to eternity.

Soon I realised however that it is quite stupid to be upset by a couple of bent covers of records with titles like "Break It Down" (Rat Traps), "Don't Care About Nothing" (The Tears) or "(Let's Go) Totally Nutzoid!" (The Real Losers). I mean, I don't want to live the life that is being reflected in the songs I love, but I can't deny that the wild energy & recklessness influences my everyday life. I will not cry if I notice someone scratched my car or if somebody tells me to fuck off and I realise I shouldn't worry too much about bent record covers. That's what I was telling myself after I calmed down and it works. After all, it's only music and although this music means an awful lot to me, I think it was pretty funny afterwards that the kid fell into my punk rock singles collection.

But kid, next time you "go totally nutzoid", please go outside the house, OK? After all, these records will be yours one day...

Tuesday, March 28, 2006

Grizzly Man (Werner Herzog)

Timothy Treadwell spent 13 summers living among wild bears in the Alaskan wilderness until one of his beloved grizzlies got tired of the stalking and decided to devour him at his campsite in Katmai National Park in the fall of 2003. In telling this story, Werner Herzog relies considerably on Treadwell's own video footage and it soon becomes apparent that Treadwell was an incredible irritating nutcase, a manic-depressive ex-alcoholic whose pseudo-ecological nonsense and selfishness were in big contrast to the desolate and raw beauty of the undisturbed wilderness. Treadwell was no biologist but a ridiculous charlatan who claimed himself the saviour of the grizzly bears in a nature reserve (!). By exposing the animals to human contact, he did them more harm than good while his egomaniacal rants against the park authorities, poachers and other visitors to his remote hideaway are proof of his insane behaviour. He wanted to become one with the bears (in which he definitely succeeded!) but never even considered asking himself if the wild animals appreciated his presence. Herzog's documentary tends to voyeurism and sensation but it suits the subject of a bear-obsessed paranoid loser perfectly. Totally embarrassing!

Sunday, March 19, 2006

Cinema Novo Festival 2006

***** The Forsaken Land - Vimukthi Jayasundara (Sri Lanka 2005)

**** El - Luis Bunuel (Mexico 1953)
**** El Angel exterminador - Luis Bunuel (Mexico 1962)
**** Grain in Ear - Zhang Lu (China 2005)
**** Asshak : Tales from the Sahara - Ulrike Koch (Germany 2004)
**** La nina santa - Lucrecia Martel (Argentina-Spain-Italy 2004)
**** Los muertos - Lisandro Alonso (Argentina-France-The Netherlands-Switzerland 2004)
**** Bright Future - Kiyoshi Kurosawa (Japan 2002)

***1/2 Café Lumière - Hou Hsiao-hsien (Japan 2004)
***1/2 Three Times - Hou Hsiao-Hsien (Taiwan 2005)
***1/2 Be With Me - Eric Khoo (Singapore 2005)
***1/2 Los olvidados - Luis Bunuel (Mexico 1950)

*** Free Zone - Amos Gitaï (Israel-Belgium-France 2005)
*** Nordeste - Juan Solanas (Argentina-France 2005)
*** Sa-kwa - Kang Yi-kwan (South-Korea 2005)
*** SPL - Wilson Yip (Hong Kong-China 2005)
*** Election - Johnnie To (Hong Kong-China 2005)
*** Crying Fist - Ryoo Seung-wan (South-Korea 2005)
*** El imperio de la fortuna - Arturo Ripstein (Mexico 1985)
*** Macunaïma - Joaquim Pedro de Andrade (Brasil 1969)
*** Simon del desierto - Luis Bunuel (Mexico 1965)
*** Les artistes du théâtre brûlé - Rithy Panh (Cambodia 2005)
*** Noticias Lejanas - Ricardo Benet (Mexico 2005)
*** Bashing - Masahiro Kobayashi (Japan 2005)
*** Mongolian Ping Pong - Hao Ning (China 2005)
*** Paradise Now - Hany Abu-Assad (Palestina-The Netherlands 2005)
*** The Cave of the Yellow Dog - Byambasuren Davaa (Mongolia-Germany 2005)
*** The Wayward Cloud - Tsai Ming-Liang (Taiwan-France 2005)

**1/2 Play - Alicia Scherson (Chili-Argentina-France 2005)
**1/2 Shanghai Dreams - Wang Xiaoshuai (China 2005)

** El aura - Fabien Bielinsky (Argentina 2005)
** The Sunflowers - Wang Baomin (China 2005)
** La sagrada familia - Sebastien Campos (Chili 2005)
** The President's Last Bang - Im Sang-soo (South-Korea 2005)
** Mur - Simone Bitton (Israel-France 2004)
** Vital - Shinya Tsukamoto (Japan 2004)
** The Syrian Bride - Eran Riklis (Israel 2004)

* Takeshis' - Takeshi Kitano (Japan 2005)
* Attente - Rashid Masharawi (Palestina-France 2005)
* Le temps révolu - Minh Hô Quang (Vietnam-France 2005)
* The Taste of Tea - Katsuhito Ishii (Japan 2004)

0 Water - Deepa Mehta (India 2005)
0 Un oso rojo - Israel Adrian Caetano (Argentina-Spain-France 2002)

Friday, March 03, 2006


Agitated by: Morton, McMahon, Marotta

I feel so agitated, so agitated,
Run through a washing machine, agitated.
So agitated, so convoluted
I hate it, I hate it, I'd just like to shoot it.

It's five a.m. and I'm crawling the walls
Waiting for imaginary telephone calls.

You know what I think, I think the whole world stinks.
I don't need no shrink, I just hate it.

Sometimes I think I'd be better off dead,
Just like my cousin Fred.

1977 All rights reserved

Monday, February 27, 2006

"Colour Green" - Sibylle Baier

After VASHTI BUNYAN's magical "Just Another Diamond Day", here's another devastatingly-beautiful folk gem from the early 1970s that'll blow your mind.

check out Orange Twin Records site here

Friday, February 24, 2006

Finally on DVD : Krzysztof Kieslowski's masterpiece "LA DOUBLE VIE DE VERONIQUE". The only interesting news of the last 3 weeks.

Sunday, January 29, 2006

King Shiloh Sound System

A terrific reggae sound system yesterday at my hometown that received massive response by a super-enthusiastic crowd. Majestic music indeed!

Saturday, January 28, 2006

Les Amants Réguliers

The ones who don't like it call those who do "pseudo-intellectuals" but to hell with those dumb-asses; Philippe Garrel's latest film is a true masterpiece!

Monday, January 16, 2006

Saturday Night Fever !!!

picture by Joost Dierick

Saturday was a crazy night!! First there was that funny guy from Bordeaux who made some great trashy rock 'n roll dance music under the moniker FREDOVITCH. Dressed up as a knight, he freaked out on drums, organ and guitar and spiced things up with exciting samples. Mix the rawness of King Louie's One Man Band with the freakishness of Mr. Quintron, add mucho enthusiasm and some neat song writing and you get an idea of the amazing sounds of FREDOVITCH. Bingo!

THE KING KHAN & BBQ SHOW was scheduled next at The Pit's and expectations were very high since this two-man band released a killer of an album last year. Their 45 minutes show was great fun : King Khan wore a sexy pink dress and made us dance like fools with his delicious licks while BBQ rocked the hell out of his rudimental drum set and added some great & raw vocals. Party!!!

When I heard that my favourite rhythm & blues blasters THE SEATSNIFFERS were playing at my hometown on the same evening as The King Khan & BBQ Show at The Pit's, I panicked for a few seconds but soon realised that shows at the Pit's must end at 10 PM and that I could probably make it in time for Belgium's finest. So after the King Khan & BBQ Show, I jumped into my car and rushed back to my hometown while some black rock 'n roll blasted out of my car hifi. Last year, The Seatsniffers had played their 10th anniversary show and since I hadn't seen these guys in about two years I was anxious to witness if they could still tear the house down. My god, they drove me to delirium! The place was sold-out (thanks Jan!) but fortunately I managed to seize a place in front of Roel, the hard-blowing sax maniac. The band blasted out one amazing song after the other : steaming hot rhythm & blues, a crazy ska-tune, savage rockabilly, a hot-blooded polka... unbelievable how tight and to the point this fabulous band was! Even the Link Wray cover "Run Chicken Run" sent chills down my spine! Did I already tell you how I danced like a fool since this probably IS the best fuckin' dance band in the world?!! Totally incredible how a Belgian roots band rivals its American idols and leaves everybody KO. Don't miss them when they're in town or don't mind driving 3 hours to see this truly unique band!

Sunday, January 15, 2006

The Wayward Cloud

Beste Steven De Foer,

Ik heb mij weeral eens mateloos geërgerd aan één van uw filmbesprekingen in De Standaard van woensdag 11 januari jl. Het komt er op neer dat iedereen die van "The Wayward Cloud" houdt een intellectuele snob is die te veel films gezien heeft en dus alleen nog maar bevredigd kan worden door exotische arty-farty experimenten. De film staat volgende week op mijn programma dus kan ik er mij nog niet echt over uitspreken maar Tsai Ming-Liang's vorige films, die u blijkbaar ook allemaal slecht vindt (lees : te moeilijk), belandden steevast bovenaan mijn jaarlijstjes.

Over film valt veel te discussiëren, alleen irriteren uw besprekingen mij vaak omdat een duidelijke verhaallijn voor u een absolute noodzaak schijnt te zijn zodat u zelf niet te veel inspanningen hoeft te leveren om een film te begrijpen. Jo Smets formuleerde het destijds mooi in Knack bij zijn bespreking van Bruno Dumont's "Twentynine Palms" : "De gemakkelijkste reactie is geeuwen, de zaal verlaten en uw als anti-intellectualisme vermomde mentale luiheid gaan ventileren."

Gaat u in het vervolg aub dit soort films niet zien en bespaar ons uw simplistisch geleuter.

Luc O.

Saturday, January 14, 2006

IT'S ALIVE!!! (I mean, it's supposed to be...)

Tonight, I am going to THE KING KHAN & BBQ SHOW at The Pit's and I'm really looking forward to it 'cuz their record will probably end on top position in my best-of 2005 list. Kris 'Demolition Derby' Verreth will be there too with a bunch of records I ordered through his excellent mailorder service during the last couple of months. Consequently, I will be able to give you my list of favourite records, 7-inches & reissues of 2005 one of these days. In the meantime, here are my favourite shows of the past year :

1. THE LOST SOUNDS at The Pit's "a total mindfuck - keine schönheit ohne Gefahr nicht?"
2. THE REATARDS/TOKYO ELECTRON/ANGRY ANGLES at The Pit's "the Tokyo Electron bass guitar that got blasted into my face couldn't spoil the fun that night - Jay Reatard was simply devastating"
3. THE FATALS at The Pit's "a real surprise - amazing psychotic blues sludge"
4. THE BLACK LIPS/RIVER CITY TANLINES/GHETTO WAYS at The Lintfabriek "3 x bingo - Oh what a night!"
5. TEXT OF LIGHT : A Live Musical Homage to Stan Brakhage featuring LEE RANALDO, WILLIAM HOOKER, DJ OLIVE, ALAN LICHT, AND ULRICH KRIEGER at De Vooruit "A great project and a mesmerizing way to enjoy the avant-garde films of Stan Brakhage"
6. THE EX at the N9 Villa "still going strong after all these years - it made me realise how influential The Ex was and still is"
7. TH' LOSIN' STREAKS at The Pit's "ex-Trouble Makers - these guys know how to party!!!"
8. THE MOJOMATICS at The Pit's "2 Italian gentlemen - these guys know how to rock in style!!!"
9. SOUTH FILTHY at 't Oud Liefken "A last minute show I organised at a great place at the countryside - a night to remember!"
10. THE BASEBALL FURIES at the 4AD "A great show but lofi punkrock bands should be seen at a small joint like The Pit's instead of on a 1 meter high stage"

I also enjoyed two reunion shows in 2005 : THE STOOGES in Lokeren and PERE UBU in Brussels. I think I missed 3 great bands last year being the DEMON'S CLAWS (snow blizzard), CRASH NORMAL (those damn Derwishes!) & THE MIGHTY GO-GO PLAYERS (dead-beat). The worst shows were those by ROCK CITY MORGUE (ex-White Zombie - bweurk!), BAMBU STATION (very mediocre reggae band from the Virgin Islands), THE WHIRLING DERVISHES OF KONYA (I missed them in Konya last year - their show in Antwerp however turned out to be very artificial (read : downright boring!)), DIE ROTZZ (C'mon guys, a little effort please? A show is not supposed to be a sloppy rehearsal!) and some Flemish art school shithead band called HARKER that fucked up the immense beauty of The Goddess (1934) at the Cinema Novo Film Festival in Bruges.

My yearly favourite shows list used to be much more varied but nothing much seems to happen outside the punkrock scene nowadays. The end of the Bluesestafette in Utrecht means no more exciting soul & blues shows. Reggae has always been a dubious live thing with more letdowns than revelations. World Music is doomed to fartsy Art Centres. I could go on. At our little punkrock scene however, things actually happen if you know what I mean so here's another thumbs-up to everybody's favourite club the mighty Pit's. I hope the cops won't bother us again before 10 PM...

I would like to end this post with a quote from Peter Guralnick's essential book "Feel Like Going Home". Sadly, nothing has changed ever since and I'm not talking about the blues scene alone.

These were, in fact, many of the same problems which have plagued every blues "concert" I have attended since I first saw Lightnin' Hopkins at Harvard twelve years ago : a stiff, unnatural atmosphere, an unbridgeable gulf between performer and audience, and a tendency to treat the blues as a kind of museum piece, to be pored over by scholars, to be admired perhaps but to be stifled at the same time by the press of formal attention. It was a depressing realization and one that left me on the whole with the feeling that even in its own backyard blues had ceased to be a living experience.

Good Night, And Good Luck (finding an exciting non-punkrock show in 2006!)

Monday, January 09, 2006

Good Night, And Good Luck

An intelligent American movie that impresses deeply and will most likely end up in my Top 10 of 2006. Already!