Mind my own business

 

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(bill pester with his guitar)

 

I decided to end my blog/opinion activities. Big deal or not, it’s not a tantrum but some kind of awakened recognition:

  • People are full of hate.

They are ready to hate at first sight.

My blog about the alleged kidnap + gang raping by the Polish Death Metal band (Decapitated) against an alleged victim who pressed charges fills me with sadness.

Sadness if it’s true facts. If so, I will regret and swallow my words and fear for my life and career as a Metal touring artist, because all bets will be off and the paradigm will painfully change for everyone, men and women.

Sadness if it’s false claims. If so, I will feel far fromvindicated. I will feel everyone is despiteful and that as the song says “people just ain’t no good”.

Sadness if there is an in between situation as I feel we all should work hard on our humanity.

Debate is dead. I won’t go as far as saying that freedom of expression, or my own freedom of expression, is compromised. It’s, on the contrary, very alive, for good and evil. I just came to the conclusion that people cling to an opinion (it doesn’t matter if justified or not) and they will argument against one’s character, story, personality and resource to offence because they know nothing else and they are not interested in what you have to state. There is not enough gray matter online.

I’ve been called a defensor of rapists. I wrote the offender back. People assumed I was taking sides with the band because I am a musician and therefore I was speaking against the alleged victim. I tried to explain. To little avail. I contacted people who quoted me out of context. Useless.

I am a decent man. I have a band and a 25 year career based on trust and honesty. I made countless friends with men and women all around the world. I have a son. I have a wife. I have a social work in the field of women’s rights that is public record. I have a company, a record and a book label. I lived my adventures on the road in consensually, good spirited experiences. As for my style, Metal, I am sad because everyone else shuts up in the face of such ghastly news (all but a few) afraid to loose their customers. If you have fans, you respect them by being yourself and not a provider of entertainment. I have a temper. I have convictions. I make mistakes. I am but a man.

But I can’t tolerate mental indecency. I don’t have the stomach to be called a rape activist. So I mind my own business from now on.

My blog will be gone. I will continue writing professionally for Jornal de Leiria, on print and online and with the time and energy I will reserve from stepping out of the mud, I will finish the translation of my poetry books into English, start editing our other book projects and devote my time, my words, my spark, my love to my family and to my band and fans by serving them well. With respect. With quality. With equality. Men and Women.

Blessed be.

Fernando

Mind my own business

Australia

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I have never been in Australia. It seems that some people that do know about us over there. Anyway,  it really never happened us going there. It’s just one of those things. Many other bands do go. This is all a question of  making it happen, and so far no Aussie promoter hired the Portuguese.

Australia fascinates me as a far away place. The fauna, the flora, the spirit. All the great genius and talent that comes from there and that we wrongly mess up in the great Anglo-Saxonic mix. However, my intent here is not to bitch about ever being there but to draw up some context I can use to talk about what I want: which is the imprisonment of our fellow Metal musicians from Poland (Decapitated) in the States, something that should truly concern our community at many levels.

I know it didn’t happen in Australia. Perhaps, it never would.

This is a true American drama, with people being jailed, lawyers, extradition, fear and deceit all around and no true facts released. Australia did begin as a big prison island at His/Her Majesty’s service . A penal colony that evolved into one of the most sought for destinies and best countries to live in. An example.

On the other side of the world, the US is trying its best to incarcerate everyone. To be like when Australia was just a prison. Minor threats, Danish parents walking their kids on the rain , hauling asses, all blacks, it doesn’t really matter. Prisons have to be filled at any cost and remain lucrative for the hate mongers who run penal administration. It’s out of control.

In the States you can be arrested by drinking without a brown bag covering your drink. For crossing the wrong side of the street. For jay walking.  For smoking at a public space.  You don’t get told, you get cuffs. Even if you are a foreign, it seems that doesn’t mean anything at all. First you get behind bars and then you have to walk the painful path of due process in a country that owns your ass now.

Nobody knows as of yet, the true story behind Decapitated prison. It seems like they tried to kidnap a fan. Their “victim” seems to have escaped their grip and “violence” and went to the Police to let them know exactly where to find “her/his kidnappers”. Not that they were hiding. They were publicly touring.

Now they await extradition. Which in practise means moving them out to Spokane but that will take long. That’s how you break people used to roam rather than staying. I strongly believe a rape charge will follow suit, so maybe things will get (even) more complicated for our Polish friends.

I don’t really know what happened. Nobody does and maybe nobody will.

I just can hope and that’s my belief that the band is innocent and this is a malign misunderstanding. I will be the first to swallow my words and hate me for them if Decapitated did something terrible. But I believe they haven’t.

The principle in the States is everyone is guilty until proven otherwise.

Everyone is jailed as a public menace.When they are freed it comes as a disappointment for the ones whom threw them in jail. In the future, for sure, Decapitated will be forever forbidden  to make their job and meet their fans in the USA. This reminds me a story with Satyricon a few years back. Same kinda of plot, a kidnap and a rape claim that has proved to be deceitful and false.

Again, if Decapitated “broke the law” they should, like any of us, be  charged for that. Personally and as a fellow musician that have toured and played with this Polish band a couple of times, I believe in their innocence. The false power of paranoia and deceit should not be an argument here. True that we know nothing of the facts but it’s highly implausible that a touring band kidnaps anyone in Spokane for their sexual amusement or to play “metal tricks” with a fan. A lot of prejudice stands behind these charges. The fact they will be arrested for weeks deserves no comment and the highly probable fake story conjured by a fan, maybe a girl, it’s a fair warning to all of us touring musicians to choose and pick and recognise the signs of danger even if we think it’s just an innocent party going on and we’re all big friends.

Fans can be crazy and can hurt us if one doesn’t take notice. We are not their friends. Not their families. It’s just music and should be kept like this.

In conclusion:

I haven’t seen the Polish Embassy and Government stepping in as the US  Gov would, if this story was up in Europe or elsehwere. Then again,  we don’t have the habit of locking up first, and then see what happens.

I am sure I am not mistaken about the Decapitated dudes. Metalheads should come forth and unite petitioning for their immediate release instead of speculating in blabbermouth. Case you haven’t noticed, shit just got real.

When Nergal and Behemoth were in jail in Russia, everybody was really adamant about Russia inhuman and backwards laws and treatments. That really sucked bit time, but where’s the same criteria for the USA?

I extend my personal support to the Decapitated members, hoping they will come out on the other side stronger and relieved from all accusations they are being charged with (which I think are untrue) and come back to their native land so they can see their families and friends and breathe the air of true freedom and not some deluded, suffocating atmosphere of the land of the free, champion of putting people behind bars.

 

PS: Since I wrote this, it seems, via blabbermouth, the band will be charged for gang rape, a quite serious and complex accusation. I copy here some of my answer to comments which are wrongly suggesting I am taking on the accuser, please read:

 

Dear X: I copy the above response simply coz i have nothing else to add right now. You’re right and i advise the same not to turn on the accused having just fragments and one side of the story told in the press with all its characteristics and limitations. My source is personal acquaintance and touring experience. I will stand corrected and be ashamed of my kind (touring musicians) if the band actually committed a crime. Some presume them guilty, I presume them innocent. Nothing more, nothing less.

Dear Y: Absolutely right. But let’s agree rape is too serious of a charge, especially group rape. Serious to the point of listening and researching deep every side of the story, starting by the alleged victim but then the contradictory as usual in any State of Law. Be sure that i am not pointing figures here, trying to find some context and yes coming clear is all we want to, especially the parts involved. I tour for 25 years and never heard of such a case in Metal touring and this can affect profoundly a style that is in its big range and generally very tolerant, that have many women as leaders of bands, and that I believe to be pure and not an opportunity for disaster. I will wait on the band’s official statement as well and follow up the case as good and as reliably as I can. Thanks for you comment.

 

 

 

Australia

Entitlement

IMG_9849 copyI was born on the 26th of August of 1974, at 7AM, in Lisbon, Portugal. I was the second child to my mother Ana but her first baby boy. First there was Paula, my older sis, and then Ricardo my younger brother. I am a middle son.

Yesterday, I gather a couple of special friends. Some couldn’t attend our little get together, Summer is hard on people with our occupation, but I have been chilling out all day long at my brother’s yard, drinking beer, smoking, chatting, playing with the kids, cooking for my vegan buddies, and when night fell Jack Daniels joined in the party until my kid pulled it out, already sleep crazy. I put him to bed, kissed him goodnight and came out to finish my drink, musing about life, accounting mistakes and the things to hold on to, thinking in absolute silence,  which is something I love to do. Then I went and slept on it.

Today I am one year older, marching unequivocally to when I will be fifty, seven years from now. Closer than ever, a bit further  from many of the moments when my life kickstarted.My birth, the early years, school, books, music, paternity, family and the moment the little river (which my last name stands for in Portuguese)became the affluent and got mixed in the bigger waters of my band Moonspell, which is now 25 years and that obviously changed whatever fate anyone had in mind for me in 1974.

One of my birthday wishes was for some time alone, to put some words into this blog, which I haven’t visited for many reasons, being the main one a much needed break from my own opinions and the way I see my industry and my world going as time goes by.

I do work a lot for Moonspell. I do it at a cost that always feels short compared  to what I achieve, as an individual or as group. Dealing with numbers, expectations, problems, personalities, turns you into a different man. This past month, after we left our agency, we have been dealing with making Moonspell a solid name, a warranty for us and for the many who depend on us now. This job bounces between being creative and sometimes making hard calls that deeply affect our mood. Two things have happened to me: I became more intense than ever and I do thank my band colleagues and my family for always bringing things into perspective, when I am unable to shake that more aggressive skin of mine.

The other thing is that, on my free, free time, I do come back to myself by writing. So, after the dirty deeds done, I sat down many times at my study’s couch and penned down what I think it will become the sucessor of Extinct, being that 1755 is, as far as I am concerned, a fully historical-conceptual album, and, who knows, the first chapter of a new way for Moonspell that we might pick up later, same terms, about the fascinating and endless source of inspiration which is Portugal’s approximately 900 years of History.

When I do this I feel “that’s my thing”. I might being getting better at closing deals and imagining experiences with the fans, but I do know now, more than ever, what my true core is and the difference I can make in my world. In the beginning there was the word.

Aside from that, I am regular guy, with a different story to be told, trying by trial and error not to fail when family, life or career calls. I could be depressing about it, but, strangely, I am not. With so many musical warriors falling, I can only theorise they haven’t found what they were looking for and lost control over things. Sometimes we might crawl into a hole and find it’s not deep enough or that we just need to close the door behind us. I have nothing but respect for those who do. The same respect that I extend for those who don’t.

It’s still too early to get into what drove me to write a new album and the contours of this sketch will travel beyond what I expect while sitting on the couch. But the process, the mere process, the challenge, the research makes me immediately a better person as I can easily lay all the anger and frustration, and deposit it in the stories that color my free time, while I count clouds of smoke.

A better person for me is someone who does’ expect anything in particular  from someone else who is his friend or companion. Too many times have I caught myself tangled in the thought why do they get these things and we don’t. That’s poison running slow in the surface of your skin and all people who live from their creations and what the world makes of them, have tasted it. Some to the point of becoming sour themselves. And all for what? For entitlement, which is the modern and silent mental disease of our ages.

Our rights, our money, our slot at festivals, our fights with flights companies. It’s hard not to react intensely to that and it’s dead easy to jump into the conclusion that we deserve more than our fellow men, even when we don’t know the full circumstances of defeat or victory or what do they mean at all. If that person who is a friend, or an idol, whose need for attention  grows to the point that you don’t know if that person is whom you met in the flesh and blood or some competitive, larger than life hologram posted on socials; it’s up to you to use your memory and true feelings to decide on your responsibility to your “lost” friend. To give up a true feeling because of a spur of the moment it’s a hard decision.

We all judge and we’re all judged during our lives. It’s in our nature to feel holier than thou, to expect reward, to minimise the other’s intentions and hard work. You need a fully equipped armoury to fight this beast and more than everything you need to find your heart to dress the armour.

The best birthday gift I can ever give myself is to at last grasp at that knowledge and to become aware of the right alphabet to use it. When paradigm changes, there’s shrapnel everywhere, and I dread words like humility, self-consciousness, belonging. These epitomise the era of projection, of restless wanting, being cheap while giving  . We are nothing at all and, to add confusion, we are everything all the same. If I am intense some times, let it be. I am 43, I can have a temper, I can say no way, and I will always feel good about it because to protect our interests is my lifetime mission. On the other hand, I know I will zoom out from the situation, or that someone will help me to. So, these days, I rest assured.

To pursue happiness is a decision. That starts deep within and that you control more than what you might imagine if you can clear the cobwebs from entitlement and start looking further, to the front, to the skies, to the inside. But never look at who’s speeding  at your side. In all truth, it’s not about winning the race, it’s about not tripping and falling down while you run.

 

Photo caption: My friends came carrying gifts. Here’s some of them: David Bowie narrates Peter and the Wolf (courtesy of the Vilhena- Gaspars); Post Pop Depression from a friend who knows too much (Ricardo Amorim, the biographer); Nosferatu by James Bernard from a collector to a guy that keeps his records on boxes (Paulo Mendez, the right friend to have). Also a black barrel Jameson from our visiting Finnish cousin Nico and last but never the least a pocket watch from an old and gone uncle grandpa, my first spiritual guide into the works of Crowley, Levi, Boulez, Arthur C.Clarke and other giant minds. Not to the milk tooth of my son Fausto which fell yesterday, and became his gift for me inside  that  little  round box.

 

 

Entitlement

How do you do? I am better than you. Reflections about Manchester.

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The other day I had a small chat with an acquaintance of mine about politically correct. About why we react stronger when bombs explode in Manchester and why our sympathy is smaller when even a bigger amount of victims and lives are claimed in Baghdad or Aleppo.

I think she was a bit angry when I told her that having been on a place, or exactly at the same place, where lives were claimed has a strong and undeniable effect on us. Thus, our deeper claims and laments when Paris, Berlim, London or Manchester are attacked.

The world is not perfect, we are not perfect. European civilization and the UK have been trying to embrace the many sensibilities living under their “one” sky. War is being waged, a coward, particular war we can’t possibly fight back with bombs. I told my friend, that when out time is up she won’t be thinking of Kandahar. It’s just the way we are built.

Our hearts and minds are not big enough to understand everything, to mourn every life. We just feel mostly cheated because many people here have died for liberty and tolerance throughout the centuries  and it only takes a few fanatics to unbalance  true progress. I really don’t know what the hell fanatic Islamists have against Europe.

Is it history? Your religion was here then and now, tolerated and embraced, respected by the dominant culture. Is it our way of life? Your people love it. They love our “decadence”, our Western music, our gadgets.

As far as I am concerned, I am into their culture, poetry, the beauty of their woman, the charm. It can’t be us against them, it can’t be. The world of today and of the antique times have had room for everyone. From scientologists to La Vey Satanists, death is not an issue that unfolds from a scroll. True we had people persecuted by their religion before: the Jesuits also made terror attacks; jews were executed by the thousand by the Nazis; just last century in Spain they executed people who didn’t want to embrace Catholicism.

All of it is always a product of a few madmen, instead of the whole Humanity. Product of men instead of Men. Truly, they have exploited people’s credulity to a murderous extent, but History repeats itself and the evil characters are but an angry bunch. You visit Tel-Aviv and sworn enemies live next door to each other and they both take their kids to school. You go to Beirut and you see Lamborghini and mini-dresses, not burkas.

This is the age of disinformation and of feeling better than one another. Vegans are and feel better than carnivores. Jesus’ loving children are taught to feel better than “the armed” Muslim children. And we feel like that. We truly do. That “superiority” comes above all pain and sympathy we allow ourselves to feel and that’s why we discuss so much over tragedies which are everyone’s to claim, especially the dead and the departed and their families.

Because Lisbon is now a top city, because we had a caliphate here in the Muslim occupation times in 7BC, our time might come.  I dread this thought. I dread being the one asked if all is alright. I even moved out of Lisbon, almost two years ago. I go to Lisbon on a daily basis to work. I am a moving target as I am always in airports, concerts, festivals.

So to speak, we can’t feel all the pain in the world. We can’t condemn every lunatic. Europe is tolerant enough, even a bit too much, sometimes , when they don’t search suspects’ homes after an attack like in Brussels airport or when they don’t jail imans who make genuine threats in the UK mosques built for tolerance and not for seditious planning. Terrorists know this, they know our laws and they know if we abdicate of our tolerance and fight them in the open, they will enjoy the small victory of making the world a place like their own Taliban rule: ruthless, lifeless, inhuman.

I might be sad for the world but my sadness won’t alter anything. Nor will my words, or actions. I might be sadder for Manchester,yeah, because I have been there, drank with locals, played there. You might point me out and say I should be sad for whole the cities, people, drone victims. And maybe I am but I know my heart and mind are not big enough to understand everything and feel everyone’s ruin and misery.

Actually I am bringing up a child in a world which is now a broken toy for Men and Gods. My attention will always be here because we do have to tend for each other, to learn how to do the triage of what happens before us, to live with our broken hopes, pretending everything is the same and that our lifestyle and cities will always prevail. That’s a great attitude yes indeed but who amongst us doesn’t look above the shoulder now in airports, concerts, bus stops, shops? This terror is unstoppable because it’s coward and random. And to descent at its level an impossible task for us, our politicians, priests, imans, teachers, writers, columnists. All is smoke and you can’t grab at smoke. Hope is dead and we will butthead each other because of Manchester versus Aleppo. And that’s exactly the victory of hate: us against them. Them against us.

All gods have failed us. Only life is real.

Painting by #Daniela Krtsch

How do you do? I am better than you. Reflections about Manchester.

On loneliness

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http://cobravenom.deviantart.com/art/Solitude-257479617 (photo credit)

I was invited a few weeks ago to attend as a speaker on a Psychology open debate in Ílhavo, northwest of Portugal. Unfortunately I got sick that day but I wrote a text for the conference I now wish to share and translate from its original Portuguese to you, here at blog pack. I hope you enjoy it. Hugs: Fernando

 

Loneliness

I would start by saying that as a human being I am bound to have an interest in loneliness. To put it it another words, I believe this is not purely an interest, but rather a condition, a sentiment that materializes many times and that is a part our existence from cradle to the grave. Solitude has its own presence, its own legacy, something ancient and deep but somehow always actual and dynamic.

Besides that inevitability, my perception of loneliness divides in two aspects:

  • The philosophical, at first unattached from any existentialism and born from Kant’s unsocial sociability category. That defines Men as a sensible/empiric being (functioning according the natural laws) but also as a rational being (therefore capable of subsequent moral action and mathematical thought)
  • The “contemplative” or poetic/artistic if you allow me being bold, but still under  natural laws , so to speak, the semi spontaneous tentatives of expressing solitude creatively; through the exploitation of the artistic object of others or of our own. Who knows, perhaps, having a go at “understanding” solitude through the sentiment or aesthetic judgment of Art. Finally, maybe also as expiation, when solitude is an evil stopping us from breathing.

As far as Kant goes, I believe that the phraseology of unsocial sociability is self-explainable. Above all things, Men is bound to associate, to work and to transform society as a group. But his need for solitude (that can be good, bad, natural or pathologic) it’s not a mere coincidence or a slip of the tongue. It reflects the struggle between the concepts of freedom and its moral or anarchic fruition. Between the eternal desire of self-gratification versus the true manifestation of mankind in virtuous association with the others.

As far as “the sensible” part of solitude goes, I reckon it has many grades and takes many turns, and I try to find about them the best I can. From the romantic ideals of misanthropy to the raw and vicious antisocial, there are many steps in the ladder, coping stages, therapy and an acceptance of “the rules of loneliness” which are bound to be always chaotic. As a songwriter and poet I am, for sure, very interested in this conflict. As far as a more philosophical reflection goes, I believe loneliness has, fundamentally, the value of a perspective. That it manifests different in each “case”; sensibility and mental health upon sensibility and mental health; that, after all as Kant beautifully points out, Men is his own champion and rival and that lines are mostly curvy than straight. Solitude is a sleek as a snake. Some like to hold the snake, others dread the snake. Others simply don’t care while more than a few are stranded alone without intellectual options or evident regularity mechanisms. This happens especially among old people in Portugal that are not only left alone but also devoid of the world who surrounded them and which they understood.

 

 

On loneliness

No tapping the back

lizard king by JE

Part 1-  Family values

Fellows: I had a shitty last week.

Moonspell (my band) had to cancel their “historical” Latin America tour.

The slot on the festival we played in Norway has been dealt under by someone who has no power to say yes or no to anything regarding our career.

I caught a terrible virus maybe from my niece or kid, which woke me up a few nights ago and made me faint in a pool of blood and shit.

I guess, it was a historical week, in it’s own way.

My amazement and small revolt against facts and happenings is something I can’t really compute. My wife’s always telling me (that I put a value too high on people, things and ideas. All i know is that I can’t avoid it even when anger, sickness and disappointment start to fade. I know she might be right and that things, ideas and especially people are the cause of all evil in the world but I have always learned, and took to the heart, the lessons we can learn and the potential to change reality by thought.

The week started really well, though.

On Monday the 1st we had the Moonspell family gathered at Anaís’  (Mike’s daughter and my goddaughter) first birthday party and all was groovy. Our kids playing together, screaming CARRO!!! (car) when a car approached, their little fights, their hugging and wrestling, their laughter.

To see that is priceless. After so many years together it makes the notions of success, the hardships of diarrhoea and the reality of mixed festival slots, not that important as they might would have been on a different day.

As I observe the party going on I am happy, but also making decisions.

On that sunny Monday , I have decided to put an end to the miserably produced and booked MOONSPELL Latin America tour. The lack of due payment, of any kind of technical or logistic info; the absolute and dishonest conviction of the Brazilian promoter we’d jump on it anyway were tough on me, on us, but the deciding factor was seeing our family playing together.

Maybe that’s our biggest achievement: that we all still talk to each other and look after each other’s kids. It takes a village. Or a band.

When I researched for this cancelation I found out that in thirty something days we’d have fourteen days that nobody was sure what would happen. If there was shows then they were not announced or for sale; if there were travel days we had no plane tickets. Dear promoter (and he’s a father too, I believe) the worst thing you can do to parents, like these wolves of yours, is to waste their time.

Since we became fathers, time became something else. However, we never turned our faces to the fights. My kid was just 18 days when I went on my first tour for a month; and Aires’s last kid was born while he was helping pack the tourbus in Seattle, two years ago. But more than anytime, our activity has to bear fruit and believe me if some band members are not what they sing about (mercenaries, captains, vikings chiefs), our personal life and code is every time more that of a pack of wolves, watching and caring for each other, with no time or space for losers.

Part 2- Being Trve

The weekend, before this beautiful Monday, has been great too. We played two shows.

One in Zurich, a smaller show, crowd, club but nonetheless very enjoyable. Then, we traveled to Stockholm to play the infamous named Stockholm Slaughter with bands such as Draconian, Solstáfir (!), Archgoat, Gaahl’s Wyrd, Watain and of course our special friends Tiamat among many others.

If I was excited to finally play a festival where I liked the music of most bands, if not all, nothing could have prepared me for the best festival atmosphere that I ever experienced myself. We started playing festivals back in 1996 and like many other bands from our generation, we played them all, big or small. Some experiences were incredible, others forgettable but we actually watched festivals grown, a lot of them, seeing what they became and sometimes  that had little to do with the fans or the music.

When people ask us why not a 25th anniversary MOONSPELL show in Wacjken or Hellfest, the answer is disarmingly simple: they didn’t want it.  Period. If I once resented that refusal considering  the history we have in both countries (Germany and France), that washed away and a festival like Stockholm Slaughter must have been regenerating for me and for many, I do believe.

It’s a fact MOONSPELL, or any band as a matter of fact, needs more the festivals than the festivals need the bands. Having said that, I believe festivals like this Swedish one, have put things in perspective for me, gave me hope and made me know again where I belong musically, personally and as a band member.

Stockholm Slaughter was not sold out. Almost, but not sold-out. But I believe that in terms of people attending for the music it might have broken records. Inside the walls of Fryhuset, a house of freedom, bands were actually talking to each other and the conversations were much more than the mere bullshit you talk at fests, while you compare dicks or tits. Then I saw many band members at the side of the stage enjoying bands which took different ways but that spoke to their heart. I watched Draconian a bit, most of Solstáfir, all of Tiamat (I even went on stage to help them butcher The Sleeping Beauty from my favourite album Clouds) and of course Watain a Black Metal band I  will always love and respect, now more than ever because of their true Bathory feel many band try to invoke but fail miserably.

I am sure if Roman, the promoter, would have booked a sweet deal band that “just” pulls people it would have sold all tickets but I totally understand and thank him on everyone’s behalf because that would have killed the atmosphere that this festival summoned up right from hell. Like in the Manowar song, wimps and posers leave the wall!

Inside the backstage, Johan Hedlund has a shopping bag. When he starts revolving inside it, like a magician, he picks up two things: an original painting of his named Lizard King (I don’t know if you are aware he is a really good, original painter) and hands that to me as “payment for being so many times on stage with them already.” . I am speechless. I hug HellSlaughter. The other gift he had, I discover later on through the night, when talking and drinking with Eric from Watain. He’s  actually proudly wearing it: it’s an old school, real vintage, Treblinka shirt.Johan’s generosity makes me so happy and proud.

This week was shit almost as if standing as an example for the new times for Music where you can’t really find REAL people anymore. I puked and I shat. So does the scene. You open facebook to make your miserably liked posts, the flavour of the day, and you just find people backstabbing old bands; aggressive vegans; make up tutorials; makeshift conversations that make you learn jack shit about the bands and what they mean. It’s terrible and I mean it. Maybe Stockholm Slaughter gave me even more clarity to see that Metal or what we do might be well alive but most of it its fake.

Without divas or divos, without limits, without Instagram takeovers and kudos, bands were there for real, enjoying their time together and more than everything their music and what it meant, means and will mean.

We might not have followed each other on Instagram lately. We might not have said an empty love you guys or miss you guys shoutout on Face. But in the end of the night, when the enemy  Sunwas claiming his placeable  of your boozed, doped, older, underground heads we were hugging and there was no taps in the back.

No tapping the back

Thanks for nothing, Pirate bay

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A week ago or so #VICE pulled up a two year old interview with Peter Sunde, founder of #PirateBay where he confessed his disappointment with open Internet. There are two things I want to get rid of quickly: the millionaire socialism embodied by Sunde and the fact that for many people this is old news and so 2015. I’ll just leave it hanging in here.

I actually participated on the small forum of comments and tried to add my two cents to the conversation. Of course i got snowed under as a lot of people might have more free time than me on their hands. Anyway, I would now to pick up the subject in the blog and extend it a bit, if you guys don’t mind.

One of the things that people argued in there it’s that copyright slows progress. They might have had a point if the subject has been broader and we talked about health patents or things that have a tangible nature and purpose, to save lives, to ease pain. We all know that the business of Health and Death is as inevitable as getting sick and dying.

However, the subject here was other type of contents, no less noble but way more difficult to categorise: songs, movies, games. Art, education, entertainment, so to speak. What Pirate Bay ever did was to take a shot at copyright industry, assaulting the towers and burning the ground regardless of the colateral damage, oblivious to the innocent. Like the great machines they sought to eliminate, they didn’t mind or didn’t care about struggling artists that without sales or label support were left with a handful of nothing.

I am no technology guru and lately  I have been visiting more places where wild things grow than caffeine fuelled start up open offices with plants and a swing, so I might be far from knowing what’s the big deal of setting up a torrent searcher and hub to make available what others invested on. The second question is why if it has fomented a culture of free for all, why was the profit made not shared with anyone else than their stock holders? The Robin Hood syndrome of the open internet gurus has always been very modest in redistribution, awareness and solidarity.

It’s like one just awarded the distributor, ignoring the product, the process and the investment made. No wonder kids think chicken come in parts packed for sale and consumption in a supermarket. The chicken, the egg, the butcher.

In a nutshell, the world is divided into two kinds of people: those who are able to generate copyright and those who can’t. It’s dead easy to find out what’s behind people’s comments and reactions, what polarises and what drives them.

We all wish it was all that simple and as a matter of fact it is. The temptation of playing with borrowed pieces is great. The feeling of diminishing artists who claim their legal and moral rights. The inebriating  power of deciding careers with fingertips, burns deep. In the big wheel of creative people, producers, label people, agents, managers there was no space for freeloaders, until they turned the table using nothing but someone’s else hard-work.

We all wish it was that simple but then we have Edison and where to fit him. But I shall write about stealing on a later opportunity.

 

 

Thanks for nothing, Pirate bay