Monday, March 16, 2009

NTT WEBSPACE UPDATE

I'm in the process of working on a moderately substantial update of the ntt website. I've included lyrics from several releases, and will be putting up some previews for THE GOSPELS OF THE GASH and YOUR SUFFERING WILL BE LEGENDARY. More to come soon.

Wednesday, March 11, 2009

Destroy everything you touch

I've just made plans to collaborate with TONIKOM (www.myspace.com/tonikom) on a cover version of LADYTRON's DESTROY EVERYTHING YOU TOUCH.

I think this will be done as love is nothing., but haven't sorted out any further details yet.


http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=dtqGoHouoE0&feature=related

LADYTRON-DESTROY EVERYTHING YOU TOUCH

Destroy everything you touch today
Destroy me this way
Anything that may desert you
So it cannot hurt you

You only have to look behind you
At who's undermined you
Destroy everything you touch today
Destroy me this way

Everything you touch you don't feel
Do not know what you steal
Shakes your hand
Takes your gun
Walks you out of the sun

What you touch you don't feel
Do not know what you steal
Destroy everything you touch today
Please destroy me this way

Destroy everything you touch today
Destroy me this way
Anything that may delay you
Might just save you

You only have to look behind you
At who's underlined you
Destroy everything you touch today
Destroy me this way

Everything you touch you don't feel
Do not know what you steal
Shakes your hand
Takes your gun
Walks you out of the sun

What you touch you don't feel
Do not know what you steal
Destroy everything you touch today
Please destroy me this way

Everything you touch you don't feel
Do not know what you steal
Shakes your hand
Takes your gun
Walks you out of the sun

What you touch you don't feel
Do not know what you steal
Destroy everything you touch today
Please destroy me this way

Everything you touch you don't feel
Do not know what you steal
Shakes your hand
Takes your gun
Walks you out of the sun

What you touch you don't feel
Do not know what you steal
Destroy everything you touch today
Please destroy me this way

THE GOSPELS OF THE GASH 2XCD-UPDATE

Another skirmish in the universe's continuing campaign against me:

Jason forwarded me an email this morning from Roger Karmanik (BRIGHTER DEATH NOW/COLD MEAT INDUSTRY), explaining that he'd received his copies of THE GOSPELS OF THE GASH, and upon opening a copy to take a listen, he found that there were two copies of disc 2 and no copies of disc 1 inside. curious, he opened the rest and found that, of the ten copies he received, two copies were missing disc 1 and had two of disc 2 in them.

Jason suggested i check my copies to make sure they were all okay, and that he'd do the same upon returning home from work.

I promptly called the president of the company who produced the album for us, who said that he'd have our project manager contact Jason and make arrangements to send the copies back so they can check them for us, rather than us going through that effort, and replace whatever needs to be replaced.
However, considering that copies of the album have now been shipped out to various locations across the planet, to both distributors and individual customers, it seems as though this arrangement will do little to stem the tide of what promises to be a massive headache for Jason...

Thursday, March 5, 2009

A response to Anthony Lane's review of WATCHMEN in THE NEW YORKER



http://www.newyorker.com/arts/critics/cinema/2009/03/09/090309crci_cinema_lane

In response to Anthony Lane's egregiously ignorant critique of Zach Snyder's forthcoming film WATCHMEN:

Dear Mr. Lane,
Your assessment of the film WATCHMEN shows a durth of any degree of comprehension of the importance of the original comic book series from which it takes its name.

When WATCHMEN was originally published 23 years ago, among other things it was a starkly pessimistic and artistic analysis of the political climate of the day. I grew up in the Reagan years. As a child I feared – like most of my generation – the spectre of a possible nuclear exchange with the Soviet Union. Like the America depicted in WATCHMEN, obliteration perpetually hung above me and my world. Like many other children and adults, comic books were a tremendously important aspect of my life. WATCHMEN was among a certain breed of comic book series which did not talk down to its readers and addressed certain intellectual and moral concerns not found in most books. Alan Moore has been hailed as a hero for decades for the depth and emotion of his storytelling. The collected WATCHMEN trade paperback was the progenitor of the entire concept of 'graphic novels,' which did not exist prior to the publication of this item.

So, where to begin when deconstructing your article? Perhaps with your most generally insulting and offensive assertion: "The result is perfectly calibrated for its target group: nobody over twenty-five could take any joy from the savagery that is fleshed out onscreen, just as nobody under eighteen should be allowed to witness it."
WATCHMEN was originally published in a limited series in 1986. That means that very few people UNDER 25 even know what WATCHMEN was, and the fact is that those books were adored by members of many generations. The collected WATCHMEN is in fact the only graphic novel to hold a place on TIME Magazine's 2005 list of 100 ALL-TIME BOOKS OF ALL TIME.
Were those who awarded the book this status the same hypothetical, moronic under-25-year-olds who you believe will be the only people to find merit in the film? Several of my friends and I have been waiting with bated breath for a large portion of our lives to see WATCHMEN made into a film, just like millions of other people from many generations.

Now at the age of 37, I still own my original copies from the 1980s, which are bagged and boarded on bookshelves alongside trade paperback collections of Katsuhiro Otomo's AKIRA (another series heralded for its innovative and intelligent storyline, which was made into a similarly acclaimed film), as well as a trade collection of Alex Ross and Kurt Busiek's brilliant MARVELS series, the graphic novel of Frank Miller's influential BATMAN: THE DARK KNIGHT RETURNS, J. M. Matteis and Kent Williams' BLOOD: A TALE, several books of Matt Wagner's GRENDEL, Masamune Shirow's GHOST IN THE SHELL, as well as several books of Frank Miller's SIN CITY and Mike Mignola's HELLBOY. The common thread amongst all of these books is that they have all been hailed by critics for decades, all went on to immense popularity beyond the comic book world, and most of them were adapted for the screen by directors either closely connected to the creators or who strove to remain as loyal to the source material as possible.

The pocked surface of your review is revealed for its ignorance under the dimmest light. Your ridiculous comment in regards to the character of Dan Dreiberg/Nite Owl hiding in his basement to escape some infringement from the intellectual property of Bruce Wayne and his alter ego is as hollow as the comments I've read by uninitiated teenagers on message boards on the same subject. DC Comics owns the character of Batman, and WATCHMEN pays homage to several of the classic comic book characters and clich├ęs, using the trappings of a superhero story to comment on an extraordinarily deep and far-reaching range of topics – in particular, the very notions of what topics could and could not be expressed and explored in the pages of a comic book. WATCHMEN changed the world, and just as Dr. Manhattan's participation in the Vietnam War altered the course of history, books like MAUS and PERSEPOLIS could not have existed without the presence of WATCHMEN.

Your references to Alan Moore's glaring lack of participation in the production of this film glosses over the fact that there have been legal issues surrounding Moore's connections to the book and a long-soured relationship with DC Comics since the book was first published. Moore's refusal to participate in DC Comics' celebration of the 15th anniversary of the book back in the first years of this decade was big news in the comic book industry at the time, and the matter of his disregard for the WATCHMEN film is unrelated to his disconnection from its cinematic cousins THE LEAGUE OF EXTRAORDINARY GENTLEMEN and V FOR VENDETTA.

Whether the film carries the same emotional weight as the book remains to be seen, it is above all a Hollywood film, but the fact that filmmakers like Mr. Snyder are finally making comic book adaptations which don't gut the original source material is as important as the impact that WATCHMEN had on literature. Seeing iconic scenes from WATCHMEN transferred with loving detail from the page to the screen will be an intensely satisfying experience for millions of fans. Your review's criticism of these scenes is indicative of the same lack of understanding shown by those who criticised Zach Snyder's adaptation of Frank Miller's 300 for not being historically accurate. It's laughable that GLADIATOR won 5 Oscars and bore no more relationship with actual history than did 300. As for the inclusion of Bob Dylan's music, his words figure quite prominently within the pages of the book, a fact which would take very little research on the part of the laziest reviewer.

You've missed the point entirely, and in the process, insulted the scores of people who have held WATCHMEN close to their heart for decades.

In contempt,

Lee M. Bartow
http://www.leechnest.net

Monday, March 2, 2009

NTT. THE GOSPELS OF THE GASH 2XCD NOW AVAILABLE FROM MALIGNANT RECORDS



The final and definitive double CD release from NTT, The Gospels of the Gash chronicles one man's journey into a world devoid of light or hope. This is a place where the air is alive with the stink of pain and the beating of great black wings. The two discs compile material from a slew of limited releases from 2005-2007, as well as newer tracks recorded specifically for this release. As a result, Gospels of the Gash is unquestionably the most complete NTT recording to date and nothing short of a monumental achievement...a culmination of the best aspects of past releases combined into an epic odyssey of apocalyptic atmospheres, brutish frequencies, harrowing darkness, and razor sharp vocals. The Gospels of the Gash includes collaborations with various stalwart members of the NTT priesthood such as Cenotype, Fragment King, and M Slagle and more recent converts Autoclav 1.1 and Covet. Isomer and Steel Hook Prostheses have also made valuable contributions.Mastered by STROM.ec, and packaged in a two-tray DVDigipak with layout and artwork by Leech and Jorden Haley (www.karbine.com), this release is a fitting funerary rite for NTT. Please note, the boxset will follow at a later date. Even though there will be copies with the Gospels 2CD in it, you will have the opportunity to buy it as a separate entity, minus the $14.33 cost. In other words, don’t feel like you have to wait for the boxset before getting the regular 2CD! With all due respect to all the other artists, this may be the finest Malignant release ever.. $14.33

http://www.malignantrecords.com/search.mpl?type=new

Sunday, March 1, 2009

THE GOSPELS OF THE GASH-03.01.09

"Existence is random. Has no pattern save what we imagine after staring at it for too long. No meaning save what we choose to impose. This rudderless world is not shaped by vague metaphysical forces. It is not God who kills the children. Not fate that butchers them or destiny that feeds them to the dogs. It's us. Only us. Streets stank of fire. The void breathed hard on my heart, turning its illusions to ice, shattering them."
- Rorschach, from WATCHMEN by Alan Moore


As I lay in bed on this grey Sunday afternoon, recovering from the indulgences of my weekend and waiting for this snow storm everyone is talking about, I thought I'd share some of these experiences with those of you who may care.
In anticipation of the WATCHMEN movie being released this Friday, I will attempt to emulate Rorschach's journal entries in my descriptions. i will warn you in advance, this isn't going to be a short read.

February 27, 2009
Woke at 5am. Anxiety and depression. Dreams of Her still plaguing me. Cried myself to sleep two nights in a row. Attempted to prepare myself mentally for being back in social arenas after weeks of self-imposed isolation. Back to sleep.
Woke again at 9am. Stayed in bed until 10, disassembled recording setup and packed it for travel. Broke leg off the table where my vocal setup sits while trying to pry microphone cord free. Annoying.

Showered and got dressed. First time wearing clean clothes in two days. Packed car with gear and merch. Drove to Lenny's house in Jersey. The winds buffeted traffic like a series of small tornadoes. Grey skies and warm air. Thought about how much I miss Her. Cried more.
Arrived at Lenny's around 12:45, a dull nagging hunger in my gut.
Put new discs into sleeves for the ORIGINS UNFOLD release while Lenny packed his gear and merch in the basement. Lenny eventually came upstairs and helped with the process. Discussed plans for eating. I cooked ravioli and made a cheese sandwich. Lenny and Heather have a lot of food in their house. I'm not used to seeing a fully stocked refrigerator.

Heather came home, vacillating about whether she was too tired to come to Philadelphia. She finally decided that she would. We waited for CENOTYPE member Clive Reinhold to arrive, Heather's friends Nicole and Kim as well.
Packed Lenny's truck. Lenny, Clive and myself driving independently from the women.
Some small amount of traffic on the NJ Turnpike. Lenny can be very highly strung at times, I feel a profound connection to him in spite of the ten year difference in our ages. He's a good friend. I am glad I know him.

Felt sad that She was not participating in this experience, pangs of loneliness always just beneath the surface of every moment. Concerned that this would affect the rest of the night. Tried not to think about it.

Made good time on trip to Philadelphia. Arrived at Digital Ferret with good amount of time prior to start of event. Found parking across the street from the venue. Loaded in without incident. Haven't seen Joe or Greg in several years. Good guys, nice to see familiar faces. Put me at ease. Had good conversation with Dean, organiser of the event. Common ground. I sometimes forget how important it is to make positive connections with people. Set up went quickly, soundcheck took some time but ultimately, things worked out as perfectly as they could have.

Jason texted that he and Butchie would be late. Flat tire on highway. I assured him that soundcheck was taking some time, so no worries. Later, Jason and Butchie walked in, Jason smiling when he saw me. I said he looked evil, a black goatee across his face like a mirror universe version of him. He said that was the point. Boxes of THE GOSPELS OF THE GASH under their arms. Broke open boxes, my hands were covered in pizza grease, but was anxious to hold one. Opened it with Butchie's help. A black bible containing the most painful moments of the last 4 years of my life distilled into sound. A crowning achievement, the final release by NTT.

Butchie gave me a copy of the new ADERLATING disc on his label SHADOWGRAPH. Side project of GNAW THEIR TONGUES. Looking forward to hearing it. Favourite track title: CUT OFF MY PENIS IN PRAISE OF BLACK SATAN.

Started playing around 8:30pm. First performance under THEOLOGIAN name. Sound was good and loud. Nervous about singing in front of people again after almost a year since last live appearance. Hands shaking. Knees buckling. Problem in vocal effects chain toward the end of set. Irritating. Disappointed by technical issues. Response from those in attendance was positive. Was repeatedly told problems went unnoticed. Jonathan Canady's girlfriend Suzie was first to approach me after I was finished. She said "Good set." Didn't recognise her at first, preoccupied with breaking gear down and still a bit annoyed by problem with effects. Snapped out of it quickly. Glad to see Jonathan and Suzie.

Lenny reminded me that I was doing vocals with CENOTYPE for our collaborative track JUSTICE, the last piece of their live set. Plugged my effects chain back in, prepared mixer for him. Sat down behind table with headphones on, made adjustments in volume periodically. Closed eyes and listened. Sounded crisp and clear. Addition of Reinhold makes a difference. Wished his synth was separate in the mixer so I could ride his levels. Next time. Did JUSTICE. Screamed names of serial killers and methods of state-sanctioned execution. "kill them all." Cathartic. Learned later that Heather's friend Nicole had to go outside during this part of the set. Physical reaction to the combination of sounds and frequencies. Almost vomited. Heard Lenny say from several feet away that I would think that was great. He was not mistaken.

Sold some merch to Joe for sale in the store. Jason took copies of new THEOLOGIAN cdr and cassette, as well as other ANNIHILVS releases and all my copies of the BLACK SUN PARALYSER vinyl. Sold things to Dean as well. Facilitated a deal with Jason and lenny for ORIGINS UNFOLD. Glad to help. We mingle and try to decide what to do in the time before heading to ABOMINATION RISE, large club event where Lenny was appearing as a guest DJ. Bought something for Her, against friendly advice.
Left gear and merch in the store to be picked up later. Said our goodbyes to Jason and Butchie, as well as Heather and her friends, drove convoy-style to the next location.

After brief hassle in parking lot, walked to venue. Realised at the door I'd left my wallet in my coat in Lenny's car. He walked back with me to retrieve it. Went into club. Hot, sweaty, crowded with bodies. Glo-sticks and black fishnet everywhere. Half naked girl dancing on raised platform instantly dredges up my contempt. Winding up stairwells and dimly-lit corridors. We find the room where Lenny is spinning. Reinhold and I go to bar as Lenny speaks with acquaintances. I buy a round for us. We still haven't eaten much. Finally locate a comfortable place to sit with Joe and Greg and others who were at the store. Red velvet booth with small table. My eyes pass across those in the room. More glo-sticks, more fishnet. A lot of ugly women and girls. A lot of half-naked and attractive young ladies. None of them appeal to me. I think of Her. Three beers in, two hours later, and my mood has descended into the blackness. Tears loiter in the corners of my eyes at brief intervals. I think about texting Her, but the cliche is too ridiculous to indulge in. Swallow this pain.

The hours slide by and Lenny is behind the decks. Requested NOTHING SEEN, NOTHING DONE and CONCRETE RAGE, which Lenny faithfully plays, perfectly incorporating them within his set. I take some photographs, Siobhean's pink camera always the butt of jokes when in my hands. The dark prince holding a pink camera. Comedy.

2am finally presents itself to us. Time to get the fuck out of here. We leave en masse, returning to Digital Ferret to retrieve our gear with Dean and his girlfriend Renee, who help us load the truck. Thanks and goodbyes.Back on the road. Lenny asks us not to pass out so he can stay awake and focussed while driving. I am unable to oblige, through no fault of my own. We stop for food, WaWa is too confusing for me in my state. Lenny has to help me order. I feel disgusted by the people in this place. The proximity of this particular breed of humankind creates a terrible anxiety within me. I am so out of sorts, this food actually tastes good.

I wake up an unknown amount of time later. Parking lot at a rest stop. Lenny tells me Reinhold had to stop. Wasn't feeling well. Goes inside to check on him. I fight to keep eyes open but unconsciousness pulls at me like a rat on a garbage heap.
More time passes, I slowly grow uncomfortably cold. They finally come back. Reinhold first, then Lenny some moments later. I sleep.

February 28, 2009
We arrived at Lenny's house some time between 4-6am. The air was freezing, and my teeth chattered as we unloaded the truck, throwing my gear and merch into the back of my car with numb hands. Teeth chattering, I parked in front of Lenny's house and ran inside. Lenny gave me a sleeping bag, a blanket and a pillow. I made myself comfortable on the couch. Cartoon Network.
One of Heather's two black cats, Ezekiel or Elijah, came to me purring. Crawling into the sleeping bag, he stopped at my knees and turned around, making himself comfortable in my crotch.
Reminded me of Her cat, who sometimes crawled under the covers as we lay together. Tears. Sleep.

Woke up and checked email using Heather's laptop. Messages from Jason, too tired to reply. Slowly crawled out of neurological haze. Heather came into the room, needing her laptop for schoolwork. She gave me Lenny's laptop. Too lazy/tired/confused to get my own from my bag. We chatted as she studied, Lenny eventually got up and went to get us all some bagels. Sat up and ate breakfast. After many hours, was finally able to stand up. Lenny and I went to Cafe Soundz and sold some merch to Bobby. Showed us photos and video of his new property in Costa Rica. Took Lenny home and drove back to Nyack.

Stopped at grocery store, bought snacks for friends coming over to watch movies.
Cleaned up and prepared house for guests. Marija showed up and I took shower. More friends came, more food. Beer. Dogs. Enjoyed myself in spite of overwhelming inner sense of loneliness. Some drama, people experiencing struggles far more difficult than mine. Feel lucky to have the friends I do. Don't deserve them.

March 1, 2009
Wake up alone again. Hung over and feeling sick from two days of social activity after such a long period of introversion and sloth. Coming to terms with the idea that She doesn't love me. What I feel for Her will never cease. She brought out the best in me. Now She's gone.








1. THEOLOGIAN. PERSONA/INJURY CDR
The first 'official' release by this new post-NTT industrial project contains two long tracks of dark, melancholy drones and malevolent rhythms, intermingling in an atmosphere of lonely bitterness. Released on ANNIHILVS, unveiled at the premiere performance by THEOLOGIAN at DIGITAL FERRET in Philadelphia on February 27, and now available exclusively via MALIGNANT RECORDS.
MALIGNANT catalogue description:

The formal debut of the new project from Lee Bartow (Navicon Torture Technologies). More straightforward than NTT, but immensely powerful. Two long tracks, the first offering sheets of cold, penetrating drones that are singular in nature, but still carry a ton of weight and intensity to them, with vocals that come slicing through the buzz. The second is the more melodic of the two, with Lee's soaring vocals floating over a percolating synth bed and glitchy noises.

http://www.malignantrecords.com/catalog

2. THEOLOGIAN. A LIFE OF CONSTANT STRUGGLE C20
Echoing from the deepest shafts within a doomed soul comes A LIFE OF CONSTANT STRUGGLE, the new cassette release from THEOLOGIAN on DANVERS STATE RECORDINGS – four tracks of insolently simplistic industrial agony from the lightless world beyond the schism.
The 20-minute cassette comes with a 6x6 inch professionally-printed cardstock insert, packaged in a resealable, medical-grade black vinyl bag. Includes black latex gloves and a THEOLOGIAN sticker. Limited to 50 copies.

Officially available February 27 at the debut performance by THEOLOGIAN at DIGITAL FERRET in Philadelphia. Contact the label for ordering info.

http://danversstaterecordings.blogspot.com

3. NTT. THE GOSPELS OF THE GASH 2XCD
The final and definitive double CD release from NTT, THE GOSPELS OF THE GASH chronicles one man's journey into a world devoid of light or hope. This is a place where the air is alive with the stink of pain and the beating of great black wings. The two discs compile material from a slew of limited releases from 2005-2007, as well as newer tracks recorded specifically for this release. THE GOSPELS OF THE GASH includes collaborations with various stalwart members of the NTT priesthood and more recent recruits, from AUTOCLAV 1.1 to CENOTYPE, COVET, FRAGMENT KING, and M SLAGLE.
Packaged in a two-tray DVDigipak with layout and artwork by Leech and Jorden Haley (www.karbine.com), this release is a fitting funerary rite for NTT.

http://www.malignantrecords.com