Sunday, July 15, 2012

Charles Bernstein // A Nightmare On Elm Street

Every 80s baby knows what the first 5 seconds signify. Freddy is going to get you. It sounds like a heater hissing unexpectedly, ready to scald your shivering skin. Hair is standing at attention. Running and dreaming. It was a horrifying concept to be attacked in your dreams, but most of us have been. What a phenomenon Freddy was. There was a girl in my kindergarten class that insisted Freddy had chased her in an ice rink. He was the reason for the visible scratch marks on her body. She succeeded in scaring the shit out of the class. Everyone was out to scare. Scott, (my babysitter’s son) used me to fulfill that need. [ Sidenote  - The Babysitter (1980) is one of the many horror movies my mother and I would watch together. Coincidence?] He would turn off all of the lights and scare me. He also had a “Freddy glove.” He made false promises. He said if I let him he would give me his Grayskull Tower and ALL of his He-Man action figures. All he ever gave me was the crappy snake figure Tung Lashor. If you turned the dial on his back his tongue went in and out. “Terror In The Tub” proves you are safe nowhere.  “Fountain of Blood” brings the dance floor beats. “Run Nancy” is the perfect theme song for our hero. Horror gave us lady heroes like her (Heather Langenkamp), Lila Crane (Vera Miles) in Psycho and Laurie Strode (Jamie Lee Curtis) in Halloween. The men had their thoughts limited to drinking and coming (at least in the 70s and 80s). The woman was the one with the strategy. Nancy went to set her traps and burn this motherfucker AGAIN.

Saturday, July 14, 2012

Philip Glass // The Music of Candyman

“My how nothing changes /// different men in the same positions ///” - Lydia Lunch “Suicide Ocean”
(A 2001 flashback odyssey)

Everything about this film appealed to me. It was a horror movie set in Chicago! The “Ghetto Youth” very much reminded me of my classmates. I specifically remember watching this movie with my mom and dad. My dad and I got excited when Philip Glass’ name popped up in the credits. Around that time he had taken my sister and I to see him in concert. He performed a live score for Jean Cocteau's 1946 film La Belle et la BĂȘte. This was my first time at the Chicago Theatre.


I was thrilled to learn this CD existed. I had no computer service or working computer. I would go to the local library and shop and book flights on the computers there. There was a very mean librarian who was one with her stool. She was spilling over in every direction. That is where I placed my order. When it arrived it shot straight to the top of my chart. It spent many months there. I would often wonder things (“I Wonder U”).  What would happen if you open that “Music Box?” Would a swarm of bees attack? Can shards of mirror scrape? This is the soundtrack for the first two films, the GOOD ones.
This was my soundtrack to “Fall From Grace.” To plunge is more like it. That was my hobby then. I would go “Faster And Faster To Nowhere.”  That’s me riding a burning slope into the hellish recesses of (y)our mind.  My thoughts were trails of gasoline. I handed out one too many lighters. This wordless choir lets me fill in the blanks.  “Helen’s Theme” is beautiful, exquisite perfection. It still moves me every time and is the main theme that gets varied.

“Candyman Suite/ Face To Razor” is one of my pinned to the floor classics. Please – “Capture me crawling on bladed floor.” It was “Just a thought and a thought can be changed.” – Louise Hay “Return To Cabrini” is a sad visit home or some place you left behind. It’s familiar territory except this time you are ready. It’s time to do battle, fight the monster. It appears you’re winning, and gaining ground. Then there is a sequel! Part II is almost as good as part one. No sophomore slump. The songs for the sequel Candyman: Farewell to The Flesh are tracks 8-13.
The back story is almost a prequel. The family shame and secrets are exposed. The continuity in the music is great. “The Demise of Candyman is an appropriate funeral service.  I am writing to you – “I Am Stretched On Your Grave.” My stomach to yours and I feel great. The amygdala on overdrive calms down. “Reverend Walk” repeats the familiar theme. Now the entire process is voluntary.