Sunday, May 31, 2009

Never Enough Metal Shows & Documentaries Department

I don't want to get too in-depth into either subject, but to touch base:

I attended Pagan Fest 2 earlier this month. It rocked. We missed the first couple of bands, which sucked--I wanted to see Oakhelm!--but I really liked Blackguard, Primordial, and Korpiklaani a lot.

And since people have asked: It's called "Pagan Fest" because most of the bands on the bill are pagans. (I'm not sure about Swashbuckle, who does what they call "pirate metal", and was thus automatically the goofiest act on the bill--but they did know their thrash!) They write songs that include references to their non-Abrahamic beliefs and mythologies. This is not a new phenomenon in metal. Bathory changed mid-career from singing about Satan and evil, to singing about the Norse gods and battle. I am sure I can dig further and find older examples if you need, however. It should not be surprising that paganism in metal is prevalent, and can support its own scene.

I also got to see the documentary, Until the Light Takes Us, which is a very candid look at the roots of the Norwegian black metal scene. It pulled no punches, but it succeeded in finding the souls behind the mythology of Norwegian black metal. Fenriz, drummer for the seminal black metal band Darkthrone, comes across as a fairly thoughtful and complex character with a sense of humor and a defiant desire to remain underground even as black metal explodes into an international phenomenon. Even Varg Vikernes, whose reputation comes across as extremely evil, seems more like someone who summoned up that which he could not put down, rather than the grand master of some malevolent scheme. The story is presented in a way that by and large proves both accessible to novices and fascinating to followers of the black metal genre. I only have one objection--I didn't mind the addition of artists who were using black metal as the subject of their gallery showings, but... TAP DANCE? No, sorry, that was epic fail. The rest of the movie was too fantastic for me to care, however. Do check it out if at all possible--there are to be theatrical releases and DVDs to be announced.

Never Enough Life Updates Department

It has been a while since I posted to this blog, hasn't it?

To be brief: I think I can say now that Amber, who I mentioned in the last post, is my current love interest. :) She, too, is trans--although in more of a genderfluid sense--and we have a lot in common. It helps that she's just as much of a computer nerd and a kinkster as I, if not more so. She's also much more involved in the local geek communities, given her connection to Norwescon. It also helps that she's cute and cuddly and adorable and fun. The only real downside to our relationship is that she is married--I know Amber's wife and she's pretty awesome herself--but it's an open relationship, and as long as Amber's wife approves of me, all should be well.

Amber also runs a fetish photography studio called Bound Muse--for details, please visit

I've also been pretty active on Twitter nowadays, and encourage those of you who want to see short bursts of drivel from me to go there. Here you'll only see meanderings. Maybe the occasional penetrating analysis. Obviously you'd rather find out the Black Metal Of The Day (#bmotd) than read here. :)

I'm also active on Blip.FM, which is similar to Twitter only it focuses on music. You can DJ through this, and I have been: -- For the more eclectic stuff (including, yes, black metal, but it's really all over the map! Recent blips include Captain Beefheart, DEVO, and Screamin' Jay Hawkins, for example.) -- For female-oriented metal, e.g. metal bands with at least one active woman in the band. This one has been more of a challenge, but has been all the more rewarding for it!

I also posted more recent pics--including Norwescon pics--on my Flickr account.

Finally, I'm also on FaceBook, for those who would rather follow me there. All my blog posts here are echoed there, so you won't be missing much. :)

Enjoy! I am!