In light of the responses I’ve seen from authors who were in the top 10 of the open forum Sad Puppies IV vote, which ranged from confusion and mild annoyance to shrill angry freak outs, I’d like to share one of my favorite quotes from Varg Vikernes:
I might be Nordic, heterosexual and have a Pagan ideology myself, but why would I expect the fans of my music to be just like me?
I am a narrow-minded ultra-conservative anti-religious misanthropic and arrogant bigot, alright, and I have a problem with just about everything and everyone in this world, but I am not demented, and if those who are not like me are able to enjoy my music that is all fine by me. Be a Christian-born black gay feminist converted to Judaism for all I care, or worse; a Muslim. Just stay off my lawn… – 2010 Interview w/Stereo Gum
If only some of those in the sci-fi community could be so magnanimous!
Rather than harp on about that, I would like to share a review I recently received. No, not for Cirsova, but for medicide’s latest album, Supernova Black:
5.0 out of 5 stars Open Up & Take Your Medicide
By S. Rosin on March 20, 2016
If you like your Industrial music “old school”, then you’ve come to the right place. Herein are practiced the sonic rituals as they were originally taught before the term degenerated into nothing more than dance music with a bad attitude. This is light years away from any dance floor with a focus that is beyond the void where these sounds are being generated. This duo are on a mission to mess with your mind, inspired by Magick and the malevolence of a corporate pharmaceutical industry that places profit over people. To that end, the technicians at Medicide Industrial now present 5 new prescriptions for altering your perceptions. The first thing you need to get about these guys is that they are a LIVE band, man. Everything is recorded live in a live room with microphones. The air is just as important to the sound as the instruments making it. What you hear is what you get and there’s no messing around. These sounds exist in the real world where they shudder and vibrate the air as a physical manifestation of the will of its creators. That fact makes these recordings as vital and dangerous as a rattlesnake. You just don’t know when it’s going to strike. It’ll hiss and chatter at you with menace and then spring forward with a thrust and get you right in the jugular. So if you’ve got some bottle, you can make like one of those southern Baptist snake handlers and pick up this serpent for a little soul salvation. If you’re lucky, you might even survive!
Now that’s the kind of love I’m talking about!
Even though we didn’t technically announce it until mid January, Supernova Black’s Amazon release date is Dec 30, so we ARE technically eligible for Best Related Work… I kid, I kid, but you should check us out!
I did some catching up on my reading this weekend, and though I didn’t quite clear my inbox, I made some pretty big steps towards doing so. I am now more determined than ever to step up Cirsova’s output this year because I have so many great submissions. I’m not ready to officially announce that I’ll be buying for two or three issues – that will happen some time after submissions are closed at the end of next month – but I’m probably going to be buying for at least two issues. That’s just how much great stuff I’ve gotten. I’m losing my mind with how exciting some of this stuff is!
I’ve been so busy promoting the magazine, I haven’t really had a chance to talk about my music any. Short version, my band has an album out. It’s not for everyone, but if you like sci-fi and heavy tunes and need something to throw on in the background of your Traveller game, you might consider checking it out.
Yeah, that’s a reference to this:
Today is the official release of Supernova Black, the newest album from Medicide.
- Voidsucker* – 7:46
- I Hate This Place – 10:15
- Gamma Draconis – 8:05
- Supernova Black – 20:09
- When Time Has Frozen – 12:59
Heavy sci-fi industrial music, ideally listened to with headphones or while playing Traveller, Fleet Commander, or Imperium.
*:A little Norman Spinrad ref for Ron Edwards.
One thing about playing in an industrial band, half the time I go back and listen to our live shows and have no idea how the hell we managed to make the sounds we did. I know that my Gristleizer had a lot to do with it, though.
Earlier this week, Createspace FINALLY accepted the artwork I have for our new album, Supernova Black. With any luck, it will be out before the end of the year. Certainly in time to advertise it in the pages of Cirsova Issue #1.
I know I said I’d have some medicide news, but things are a bit slower than we were hoping. Good news is we’re finally clearing out our “vaults”. Supernova Black, if that’s what it’ll end up being called, will be out before the end of the year, God willing. The best way I can describe it is taking Hawkwind and stripping away the conventional Rock & Roll elements until all that’s left is the weird psychedelic sci-fi shit. I don’t know if that’s a good thing or not, but it’s what we’re looking at.
Though the other half of my band leans more toward the mystical, I’ve always felt that we best encapsulate the sounds of science fiction. One of our last albums before we took a hiatus of a few years was Black Hole, a soundtrack to a non-existent Science Fiction movie along the lines of 2001: a Space Odyssey, about the disappearance of the USEF Sagittarius IV, a scientific expedition to the A* supermassive black hole. For that project, I wrote some pieces of accompanying short fiction and even made a music vid.
Well, we’ve got a new track that we want to share with the world and will hopefully have available soon. I wouldn’t call it perfect or our best work, but it’s certainly worthy of a comeback. I’ll have more details on that soon, but mostly I wanted an excuse to share this:
and despite the efforts of our chief engineer, navigation through the phase gate (designated 693) proved especially difficult and it is through these difficulties that the crew’s morale seems to be slipping and in desperate need of a pick-up as we approach the region of Sagittarius A*; while no one has yet begun outright questioning the mission’s goals, as the previous briefings have convinced us all of the sheer scientific importance of the mapping of the A* region’s event horizon, there is a sense of unease about the preparedness of the U.S.E.F. craft to both withstand the cosmic radiation from the dense region this close to the center of our galaxy and the mental health concerns which have been raised by our crew’s medical officer. The journey has proven more stressful than anyone could have predicted in their models and plush offices, and being 10 months from our last port of call, a remote deep-space research post operated by a skeleton crew who are barely capable of maintaining custodial duties of the laboratories, much less effectively oversee the primarily automated experiments whose value remains in question to those left. From what we gathered, we were the first ship to visit them in three years; while the crew of Sagittarius IV had at first been delighted at the prospect of human contact outside of their own, they were quickly disappointed to find the crew of Ceti-Omega’s social skills… lacking. Ceti-Omega’s crew of four, we learned, had dwindled from an original twenty. They had lost contact with their U.S.E.F. mission staff when a wave of particularly strong spatial distortion had adversely affected their communications array; along with the disabling of their Heisenberg beacon, U.S.E.F. had been able to neither communicate properly nor even locate the region of space into which Ceti- Omega was currently drifting. One of the scientist (now deceased) had created a strategic 5 year plan to ensure the survival of the crew as well as continuation of the experiments onboard, however this strategy seems to have included a lottery drawing of sorts which has left the crew to the state it is currently (the scientist who originally devised this scheme is no longer with the crew, who are somewhat reticent to relay details, and perhaps the less said the better). However, this digression has gone on too long. Our stay at Ceti-Omega was brief and demoralizing (as was my adamant stance on refusing to accept the remaining staff as refugees on our craft), however we did transmit their coordinates to their U.S.E.F. supervisory committee, which, I suppose, may be of some help if the transmission both reaches its destination (quantum communications have been behaving strangely as we’d approached 693, the final phase gate through which we were to pass) and if their mission has not been terminated and the files sealed. Prior to our unsettling experience with the crew of Ceti-Omega, we had fully resupplied at our final official stop before 693. Those supplies are now dwindling, but we are still within the mission tolerance for a successful return journey. However, as I previously stated, the navigation of phase gate 693 was especially difficult, as its course has been, until now, uncharted. I have been told that PG-693 had been put into place by U.S.E.F. engineers decades ago for the specific purpose of creating an easy jump point to aid in the mapping of the A* region and its event horizon, however after placing it, something happened to their charting probe and very little of the data recovered was usable. Even more perplexing was the immediate recall of the teams who had put the phase gate into place; Phase Gate 693 had never been mapped, never been tested, and never even been maintained since its installation at its point in deep space; therefore I took it upon myself to create a map of 693 in
I’d written this for use on one of our show fliers for the Black Hole CD release. We saw a couple people around with their face pressed up to the image of the black hole we’d superimposed it on trying to read the whole thing. Hopefully it was less of a chore to read it here.
Anyway, some new medicide will be up in a few weeks.
I realized today that given my current saving and some projected expenses in the next 4 months, I actually have enough money to put out an LP. The problem is, I don’t really have an LP to put out.
Because of a lot of poor choices I made combined with years of self-flagellation, I’ve burned all of my bridges in the music business, lost all of my connections and friends from when I was a “record exec”, spent years living under a rock and ultimately lost contact with the few people I stayed in touch with after deleting my facebook account. Hell, I don’t really see any residuals from my old RVR stuff, and any time someone actually buys something on Amazon that I have to ship, it’s met with mixed feelings of curiosity, sorrow and annoyance.
I DO actually have a project that’s been waiting on the back-burner from before I closed the gates of Gondolin, but it’s uneconomical and impractical and it would require me to force myself to get in touch with someone I haven’t talked to in nearly two years and make a very drastic change in my personal life which I feel that I need to make but have been too much of a coward to go through with. And even if I did those things, there’d be no real audience for it because I burned all of my bridges and lost all of my friends. I’ve told myself over and over again “I’m just not ready yet”, but as time has slipped by I feel like I’ll never be ready. And because of everything and everyone I’ve lost I feel I can’t ever get back, I tell myself “what’s the point?”
Anyway, the project that I had from ages ago that I could put out on vinyl was an old Medicide album called “An End to All Questions”. We were so proud of it, we decided that we could ONLY release it on vinyl, even if it screwed up our release and catalog numbers (which used a system that was slightly more screwed up than the Nine Inch Nails Halo system but significantly less screwed up than the Factory Records numbering system)*
It was 40-some minutes of mind-breaking industrial chaos. The LP jacket art was David’s Death of Socrates. I hope that I exported the art file, because I no longer have access to inDesign, though I’m pretty sure I still have the source files for it. It’s probably a moot point, though, because there’s a 99% chance that I’ll never put it out. It has no audience and, at the moment, not even a band to promote it.
It’s one of those many reasons why I hate my life.
*:All of our releases were in “milligrams”:
0mg (which people confused with OMG) – Medicide (self titled)
1mg – Hazardous Garbage (our second album; there were like 20 copies of this ever; don’t even bother looking for it)
2mg – Our first live show
3mg – Our second live show
4mg – Peace Be Unto Him EP (a cd-r with a couple different versions of “This Wrong Ideology”)
5mg – Into the Vena Cava (our 3rd album; a digital only release on Off/Bruma)
6mg – Concourse Ov Thee Forces (4th album; hell, we managed to get this one on Pandora!)
7mg – Black Hole (5th album)
8mg – An End to All Questions (6th album; unreleased)
9mg – Third live show (great)
10mg – 4th live show (mediocre; my now girlfriend gave my some bad synth-weed before the show & I could barely make it through the set, which we cut to less than 30 minutes)
11mg – 5th live show (good, but for whatever reason I forgot to include this show on this list and forgot to upload it to last.fm. It’s somewhere. the rest of this has been renumbered to correct this oversight.)
12mg – 6th live show (the best)
13mg – 7th live show (pretty good)
14mg – 8th live show (great, but audio & memories ruined forever by recorder picking up extensive conversation between now girlfriend and then best friend that now girlfriend made me throw under the bus)
15mg – Untitled 7th studio album (unreleased)
Update: Wow. I just found an epitaph left for us by one of our biggest fans:
At present, nothing is known of the ultimate fate of the A* expeditionary mission. Few fragmented and highly distorted transmissions make up the final communications of the U.S.E.F. Sagittarius IV. And while the ship’s black box was found several months later on a remote asteroid, all instrument data had been lost. All that remained was a strange recording and a puzzling manuscript, written in what appeared to be the captain’s logbook, however all pages but one had been torn out. The team initially was unable to decipher the hastily scrawled entry until a junior officer held a mirror to the text. While the official report will indicate that the ship’s life support system failed and there are no presumed survivors, the truth about how the members of the Sagittarius ultimately met their end is unknown. – Sagittarius IV Dossier, Final Report -Redacted Portion-
“In the moment before the combined might of our twin universe’s gravity pulled me into myself and outside of the realm of being, I saw it: EVERYTHING. A universe like I had known, but not, fit in perfect proportion into the head of a pin. Oh, to have frozen in that moment to observe, the creation and death of stars and novas, planets, civilizations, lives, deaths, all from my vantage! Very soon, I would become small. Inconceivably small. And then nothing… to be torn apart, exploding and expanding infinitely, stretched out over great distances. However, in that brief, crushing instant, I WAS A GOD!” – U.S.E.F. Capt. Allen Anderson (Presumed)
A long time ago, I said I was going to do some album highlights of some of the old stuff I was involved in. I have some trepidation in doing so, as I’ve officially quit the music business and closed Retro Virus Records, but do feel there is a bit of relevance a couple of these album to the gaming community, or at least some fans of Cirsova. So here’s the first one.
Black Hole was an album I recorded with medicide, an industrial duo I was half of; the concept was a soundtrack for a non-existent low budget science fiction thriller along the lines of 2001: A Space Odyssey. It was the last studio release (and, for now, the last planned) of medicide, while we were clearing out the archives of materials recorded in spring of 2011. I created a handful of pieces of flash fiction and physical art to accompany the release.
There is still an obscene amount of studio and live material “in the vault”, so to speak, but we never managed to gain more than a scattered interest in our unique style of music (which was largely unsuited to the local club and bar scene), and what internet following we had was not really enough to justify a deluge of physical releases. As of right now, the project is “on hold” indefinitely (‘lasting for an unknown length of time’ indefinitely, not ‘forever’ indefinitely) barring a resurgence in my own personal interest in the project combined with a growing interest from ‘the public’.
All things aside, Black Hole is an album of which I am incredibly proud and sincerely hope that some of the followers here at Cirsova might deign to check out.
Being a ‘soundtrack’ or ‘score’, it’s largely meant to be background music, optimally for playing science fiction games or reading science fiction books. Whether it has any implications for gamers who might want to use it as a supplement in a tabletop science fiction setting remains to be seen, but if anyone finds it useful, I’d love to hear about.
The album is just shy of 80 minutes, so you’ll hopefully get your money’s worth.