VIDEOS SELECTED BY DAVID BIZARRO (PART 2)

By David Bizarro | Intro: Garbiñe Jaurrieta. June 30, 2012

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Going to a church, a synagogue or a mosque in search of comfort doesn’t always help. Leonard Cohen, should know, since his surname means “priest” in Hebrew. Rather than a sermon, The Future is an elegy for the 20th century: “I've seen the nations rise and fall / I've heard their stories, heard them all / but love's the only engine of survival”. Maybe that’s why, dejected and disenchanted, he left everything and retired to a Buddhist monastery in the nineties. Rather than an act of contrition (“I wonder what they meant / When they said repent”) it was an act of redemption.

When a few years ago his ex-manager vanished taking all his money, Cohen was forced to leave the priesthood and go back to parade his battered health from stage to stage. Last year he received the Prince of Asturias Award. Since that day his mysticism seems a little more mundane but his verses still seep right through us: “I've seen the future, brother: it is murder”. By the time you realize this, it will be too late.


 


As a symptom of these convulsed times, the zombie figure has recovered its original metaphorical meaning, triggering new political, philosophical and even socioeconomic re-readings. The new hordes of walking corpses reflect the greatest fears of western society with renovated energy. Issues related to immigration, unemployment, homeless or war victims, as well as epidemics and natural disasters take the shape of alienated and soulless creatures, hungry for fresh flesh.

Recently, the streets of Miami have registered several cases of violence and cannibalism that the police believe to be connected with the lethal effects of a new drug. Watching the news I cannot help remembering the visionary opening scenes of Dawn of the Dead (Zack Snyder, 2004). And, more specifically, of the quavering baritone voice of a Johnny Cash whose age and regrets were starting to show and who now raises again, prophesizing our last hours: “And I looked, and behold a pale horse: and his name that sat on him was Death, and Hell followed with him.” (Revelation 6:8).


 

Ghost is a Swedish band of metallic ancestry that pays tribute to Black Sabbath, Blue Öyster Cult and Pentagram. Their album Opus Eponymous (2010) sounds like a sulphurous homily and was nominated to a Grammy in a genre too small for them: Hard Rock. Dressed up as apostates from hell, they take the show to the limits of pantomime; they declare they are satanic and their lyrics abound in occultist and disturbed clichés. But even so, they are not to be laughed at; they are great.

In their hands Here Comes the Sun takes on a deep sinister emotion, almost of a pagan rite. An allusion favoured by this video edited using images from Lucifer Rising (1972). It is Kenneth Anger's most ambitious work, in which the homoerotic impulse –so typical of his stills– gives way to a fascination for esotericism and ancient civilizations. A glamorous visual delirium with Marianne FaithfullChris Jagger (Mick’s dear brother) and Jimmy Page, Led Zeppelin'sguitarist. All of them, together and tangled, in praise of Aleister Crowley, thelema and sexual equinox.


 


Last night I dreamt that the IMF came to our rescue to the sound of Los Millonarios, while Luisita Tenor dedicated her cover of The Sun Ain’t Gonna Shine Anymore by The Walker Brothers to Merkel. As we fled, we witnessed in horror the sacrifice of six vestal virgins for the glory of the private sector. Then, we woke up. And everything was still pitch-dark.

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