By David Bizarro | Intro: Garbiñe Jaurrieta. June 29, 2012


David Bizarro fills with tunes and letters the Muro de Sonido section in El País and several blogs. Today and tomorrow he’ll do the same for visualMAG with an excellent selection of videos.
For these hot days when all we do is stare at the risk premium and the scoreboards of football matches, David Bizarro delights us with a compendium of exceptional and apocalyptic clips to get lost for a few long minutes. Enjoy:

“And ye shall hear of wars and rumours of wars: see that ye be not troubled: for all these things must come to pass, but the end is not yet. For nation shall rise against nation, and kingdom against kingdom: and there shall be famines, and pestilences, and earthquakes, in divers places. All these are the beginning of sorrows.” (Matthew, 24:6-9)

On the verge of becoming a professional chatterbox, Alejandro Jodorowsky dealt the apocalyptic ceremonial with the crude and irregular Santa Sangre (Holy Blood) (1989). A disturbing cult film halfway between the shaman symbols of his first titles, giallo argentiano and circus references to Browning and Fellini, which benefits from a wonderful score by Simon Boswell.

The splendid Blanca Guerra plays the lead in one of my favourite scenes, avoiding the eviction of her church to the sound of El Fin del Mundo, a moving ranchera that, together with the music scenes of Déjame llorar and La Barca de Oro, justify their decadent (and very bizarre) viewing.


Fernando Arrabal
is hardly –and inadequately– known in Spain. People seem to remember him more for his millenarian binge in Sánchez-Dragó's TV programme than for his outstanding artistic production. Viva la Muerte (1971) is a compendium of his obsessions as a playwright, poet and film maker; a surrealist allegory, transgressor and Sadean, that anticipated Salò (1975), by his friend Pier Paolo Passolini. Just like Arrabal’s, it is less subversive in its scatological excesses than in its political commitments, even causing several attacks by the extreme right during its premiere in Paris. Up to three cinemas went up in flames, but that doesn’t justify the fact that the film is still unknown to our screens.

Roland Topor (member of the Panic Movement with Jodorowsky and Arrabal) illustrates the film’s credits, inspired by Gustave Doré’s illustrations for Dante's Divine Comedy, Goya’s Los Disparates or Bosch’s The Garden of Earthly Delights. On the background we can hear Ekkoleg, a terrifying Danish nursery rhyme that makes your soul shrink.


"Those people in the dining room / are busy being born and dying”. Witnessing how the future of the UEFA Euro 2012 is settled as the old continent collapses. Greece qualifies for the quarter-finals; Portugal beats Holland and Rajoy appeals to the victory of the Spanish team. Spaniards need this happiness, he says. These are tough times. But, if “The Red” fulfils this task, each player will collect three hundred thousand euros. If you change the channel, you will see how Nadal is defeated. An ad break and we will be back in no time...

In his book Tropicália: A historia de uma revoluçao musical (1997), Carlos Calado described the movement as “the beautiful decadence of samba”; an artistic dissidence that Caetano Veloso borrowed from his compatriot, the avant-garde and anarchist artist Héctor Oiticica. Together with Gilberto GilGal Costa y Tom Zé, Os Mutantes came out in favour of the “pais do futuro" with bossa nova and lysergia. “Enquanto nós cantarmos, haverá Brasil”, they subscribed. That is what you call hope.


“Why does the sun go on shining? Why do the birds go on singing?”, asks Skeeter Davies, glowing on TV like a bucolic version of the Lady in the Radiator from Eraserhead (David Lynch, 1977). “Don’t they know it’s the end of the world / because you don’t love me anymore?”. There is nothing that Brenda Lee or Claudine Longet can do when played against the original version of this classic of existential indifference. Written in 1962 by Arthur Kent and Sylvia Dee (the songwriter behind Nat King Cole and Elvis Presley, among others), it has the unmistakable touch of her producer, Chet Atkins, one of the kings of Nashville.

In its own way, this song transmits an almost metaphysical sadness. The same that gives us a lump in the throat when we listen to Robert & Johnny, Bobby Vinton or Irma Thomas . A disturbing feeling that some of us interpret as nostalgia and that Best Coast and Lana del Rey  find so strange; as if it came from another planet, lost and unfathomable.


To be continued...(tomorrow).

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