Morphizm Main

Present Tense
David Gedge and The Wedding Present are coming straight outta L.A. on El Rey: MORE

Spaced Out
Jason Pierce has a thing for fire. So together we poured gasoline on Spiritualized: MORE

Meowwww!!
From slicing up cat dicks to signing up Fonzi, Big Tobacco has pulled some weird science: MORE On the Beach
Dream pop standouts Beach House are catching heat. But can they catch fire live? MORE

Stipe On Speed
R.E.M.'s thrash attack has gone into hyperdrive on the brilliant Accelerate. Stipe tells us the targets: MORE

Slugs 4 Obama!
Atmosphere's When Life Gives You Lemons... is all about the hope. And so is Obama: MORE

I Say God Damn!
What's left unspoken in the Obama flap is this: Has God blessed America recently? MORE Ass Out!
Assy McGee is one hell of a cop from hell. So where are his arms? Our interview explains: MORE

Miss Fortune
China's Olympic intrigue has reached critical mass. Who says politics and sports don't mix? MORE

Nirvana's Son
Kurt Cobain: About a Son is out on DVD. Its peek into bipolar stardom is still hard to watch: MORE

Betrayed?
Boxing legend Joe Louis gave body and soul to God and country. Did they repay the favor? MORE

Taxi!
Those in need of war films are scoping the wrong Oscar bait. Try the Dark Side: MORE

Pro Choice
Clinton or Obama? Good question. Now, all you have to do is answer it, and wisely: MORE

In Cold Blood
Rick Geary creates comics that paraphrase history without passion. Our interview explains: MORE

RIP, Prof
Kashmere pioneer Conrad Johnson has passed. But his upstart funk still lives on: MORE

Past Proust
Adapting one of canon lit's most knotted yarns into a comic just might work. Wait, it did: MORE

Disowned!
The housing collapse is a failure of white-collar proportions. Klein saw it coming: MORE

Trash It!
Is your home worth less than your mortgage? Then walk away, baby. Just walk away: MORE

Dystopia Drift
Unembedded journo Dahr Jamail has seen Beyond the Green Zone. And it's looking ugly: MORE

Best of 2007
El-P's I'll Sleep When You're Dead was the most brutally honest music of the year: MORE

Fed Up
Bernanke's rate cuts won't stop the bleeding. It will just cover up the tracks. Thanks, Greenspan! MORE

Beat This!
Ike Turner has passed on. But Morphizm's last interface with the funk maestro never will: MORE

Hyperrealist
Karl Rove now says Congress rushed Bush into war with Saddam. Revise your textbooks! MORE

Shop or Die
The Kubler-Ross Model works for death, but it also works for the mall. Even around the Bratz: MORE

The Fixer
Gordon Brown is a go-to guy if you're a lobbyist. Or a fan of Rupert Murdoch: MORE

Guns, Green?
The market has spoken, says Naomi Klein. And it wants bullets rather than renweables: MORE

Pak Attack!
Musharraf may be Bush's nightmare, but he started out as Clinton's daydream: MORE

TomorrowSci!
From pain rays and flying cars to innovations to save our sorry hides from climate change, tomorrow science is here today: MORE

Not a Moralist
The Serbian photographer Boogie has seen his fair share of the global underworld. Good thing he took pictures: MORE

Party's Over
Serj Tankian's debut solo effort Elect the Dead says civilization is over. So why is he smiling? Our interview explains: MORE

The Perv
Pakistan dictator Pervez Musharraf has declared martial law and suspended the constitution. Who's surprised? MORE

God is Bond
Barry Bonds isn't the only sports superstar who points to the Man Upstairs when he scores. Piety has gone viral: MORE

Hypermarket
From plunging dollars to skyrocketing oil, the hyperreal American economy is due for a real-time ass-kicking: MORE

Pin is Back
It's been a long time since the stunning Summer in Abaddon. Good thing Autumn of the Seraphs is on the way: MORE

Ignore Nothing
Indie-hop titan El-P's newest epic I'll Sleep When You're Dead is filled with biohazardous truth. So is he: MORE

Sicko 'Em!
Whatever. Michael Moore's new movie on the corrupt American healthcare system is good for you: MORE

Water For War
If you think the clusterfuck for oil is scary, just wait until we're more worried about H2O than CO2: MORE

Altered States
Don't know much about global warming? Keep it that way. Trust us, you don't wanna know more than that: MORE

Pelican Echoes
If you think wordless metal can bring noise but not brains, we talked to a band that wants to talk to you: MORE

Steampunker
Rasputina has finally embraced the War on Terror in Oh Perilous World. What took so long? We asked: MORE

Osama's Diary
It's a stone cold Morphizm classic. And it will still make you cry. Almost as if it was real. Really: MORE

Slice and Dice
Cake blew up with a cover song, but they're even better at blasting "War Pigs." Our interview explains: MORE

Gaza Lab
Israel. Hamas. Fatah. What the? Gaza is looking less like a prison and more like a petri dish every day: MORE

BagCalgary
Fronts in the War on Terror are shifting. Which means Canada's oil sands are up next for a global warming: MORE

Crow's Nuts
The indie Tony Millionaire strip Maakies is at last making the legit jump to Adult Swim. Bottoms up, sailor: MORE

Vulture Funds
You've got to get in on this one. You buy $5 million in Third World debt relief, then sue for $50 million. Suckers buy it every time: MORE

DIY or Die
Art-punk corn dogs The Minutemen were brazen heroes. It's about fucking time someone gave them a biopic: MORE

Not a Slave
300 director Zack Snyder may be a friend to CGI, but he knows when to leave it alone. Our interview explains: MORE

Physics of Iraq
What goes up must come down and what gets jacked must come back. Ask the British. While you're at it, go ask Icarus: MORE

A Bit Awkward
The Pixies' doc loudQUIETloud captured the band selling out stadiums and ignoring each other. Our interview explains: MORE

Total Chaos
According to our interview with journo and author Jeff Chang, the hip-hop arts movement is far from dead: MORE

Get Truthy!
Stephen Colbert's vivisection of the stoopid Republican machine is an example of linguistics at its ballsiest. Suck on it: MORE

Cry Wolfie
Let's not drink the Kool-Aid. The World Bank was fucked up long before fuckup Paul Wolfowitz took over: MORE

Object: War
Our hyperreal narrative in Iraq is in search of an ending. Will the American people write one before it's too late? MORE

Good Machines
In these liner notes excerpts from his compilation Fuzzy Warbles, XTC architect Andy Partridge's love of tech goes haywire: MORE

Torture Works
Is it just us? Or is the tight-lipped Bush administration's call to torture for information more than ironic? Hey, wait: MORE

Go Fuck Yourselves
President Bush's speech on the war's escalation revealed much. Including how little he cares about...well, everyone: MORE

"How My Brain Works"
From sci-fi to hip-hop, Michel Gondry has a gift for visual invention. And we have a lot of questions for him: MORE

When PNAC Attacks!
Get to know your well-heeled presidential family and other comb-lickers in this excerpt from Fanta's comic Bush Junta: MORE

I'm the Distorter
Sure, the Democrats may have taken over Congress, but the Bush administration hasn't blinked on Iraq. And it never will: MORE

Trial of Trials
Jose Padilla was once a terrorist. Now he's putting U.S. torture policy on trial. Only in America: MORE

Garrison State
Muslims rioting. Americans killing. Too bad no one's made a film called Why We Fight. Wait, Eugene Jarecki has! MORE

Guilin
"The smell of damp earth that hangs over Guilin will surrender, and join the cosmopolis cropping up along the Li:" MORE

Game/Theory
"In the cinematic fashion of the dying antihero, I expired while reading the stars. Coordinates on a grid of contested terrain": MORE

Fanta Goes Beastly
A comics powerhouse compiles a massive tome on our collective nightmares. Vampire and Harpy haters beware: MORE

Shit Happens. Real Fast.
In our continuing exegesis on exponology, China explodes and Antarctica's demise accelerates: MORE

Exponology
The planet is heating at an exponential rate. But what is the exponent, and who are the people spinning it? Enter Morphizm's formative science, awaiting your learned modification: MORE

Panther Power
Fuck Hoover's race paranoia. The Black Panthers have survived, from Marvel comics to hip-hop to a loud ass protest near you: MORE

Surfing With Rosa
In honor of the Pixies doc, Morphizm pays homage to their Surfer Rosa/Come On Pilgrim split, an enduring classic: MORE

Thursday, December 29, 2005

 

BLAST: The Year of Fear

OK, let up a bit. Everyone has to submit a year-end review of some sort every December, and Morphizm is no exception. See, it's a way of enforcing closure on a series of months most of us would rather forget. Even if we were laughing -- or crying, depending on what danger zone you call home -- hysterically the entire time. Without ado, Morphizm's Swiftian badass Ross Levine lays it down:

2005: The Year of Pharaisical Thinking

Here's hoping your next year is better than the last one. Bottoms up, suckers! See you in 2006.

MORE @ MORPHIZM

Tuesday, December 20, 2005

 

BLAST: Chung on Flux, Brokeback the Favorite, Festival of Folk

Coming up on Christmas with a quickness, so I must be accordingly speedy with the blast, my friends. But don't sweat it; we'll be back right after all the unwrapping to rant some more before the year is up. For now, Morphizm is proud to present an extensive interview with an animator who's as controversial as he is successful:

Expanding the Possibilities: Interview With Peter Chung
Peter Chung is not your average sci-fi figure. First, he cuts a studied philosophical chunk out of whatever he happens to be interrogating at the time, be it the AI-human interculture in The Animatrix (via his seriously underrated short "Matriculated"), Alexander the Great's Reign, or his touchstone work, Aeon Flux, now a full-blown Hollywood effort. Second, as he shows in this interview (a portion of which appeared in the November issue of WIRED), he's honest about making the compromises an artist has to make to get his work out to the people. But finally, he's an animation loyalist, and interested in experiencing -- and making -- slipstream art that defies convention... MORE

Festival! (DVD)
Murray Lerner almost won an Oscar for this earnest portrait of folk music's finest talents converging on remote Rhode Island for the Newport Folk Festival from 1963-1965. For those who may not remember yesteryear's heresies, that includes the year Dylan went electric with the Paul Butterfield Blues Band... MORE

Brokeback Mountain
Brokeback Mountain gets its point across too: The men are anguished, yes, and the mighty Wyoming landscape reflects their efforts to be together, to stay apart, to resist expectations and to succumb. Most often, however, they embody the persistence of their pain... MORE

OK, that's it for now. Must hit the road in search of family and relaxation, if only for a couple of days. Then it's time to wrap up 2005, before moving on to what is shaping up to be an astounding 2006. Stay tuned, and stay up.

MORE @ MORPHIZM

Friday, December 16, 2005

 

BLAST: Kong is King, Woodward Still a Jackass

Happy Friday, suckers! Checking in with a quickness, as I must get to more pressing matters, like buying presents for people who probably don't deserve them and writing paid articles about people who probably don't deserve the press. But that's the grind, as Bob Woodward, the one-time journo hero behind Watergate, found out recently. Welcome to the machine! Speaking of machines, let's start the blast with Peter Jackson's latest FX clusterfuck:

King Kong (2005)
A couple of brief, idyllic intervals (gazing on a sunset from atop Skull Mountain, sliding playfully on a lake in Central Park) only underline the impossibility of their romance, as they are violently interrupted. Ann's decision to take up with the Kong against his assailants is less a considered choice than a kind of reverie, an effort to reclaim her own sense of delight, to stave off the evils of the Depression, show business, and ambition. "Good things never last," she tells Denham when she meets him. If he's the embodiment of her fear, Kong is the last stand against it. It's Ann and Kong's romance that drives the film and at least addresses the complex race dynamics. At once sensational and heartrending, it's an intimacy that can't last... MORE

Caught With a Woody!
Bob Woodward once was the paragon of journalism. But that all changed once this fake transcript came to light... MORE

Safe and Warm
What's most pressing at any moment is a gesture or glance. Syriana is built on fine performances and difficult positions, a mature, provocative look at global machinations by small-minded men... MORE

Disturbances: Only One
All of which serves as a humorous reminder of the Order of Things. Some appetites carry a heavy price. So you prioritize. Step back from the rabid consumption and reassess what is necessary and what is simply a matter of desire.... MORE

OK, that's all for now, virtual pen pals. Check in on Monday when Morphizm unveils a new slew of articles, interviews and reviews. The next year is shaping up to be a big one for us, so stick around. It's only going to get stranger.

MORE @ MORPHIZM

Tuesday, December 13, 2005

 

Richard Pryor, 1940-2005


Bracing honesty and sacrificial victims are needed now more than ever. Pryor was both, as well as the funniest black comedian to ever grace a stage or screen. He was also one of the most underrated actors of his generation, as one viewing of the searing drama Blue Collar or the hilarious Which Way is Up? will prove. Pryor was never afraid to sift through the stunning material of his personal life and show what was left to audiences far and wide, knowing, as all true artists do, that you ain't shit unless you walk the walk.

But I'm at a loss for words to encapsulate what Pryor meant to the jacked-up world he has left behind, to say nothing of the sadness I feel knowing that his life ended at 65. So young, with so much still to do. For now, I'll give way to the Village Voice's Greg Tate, who eulogizes Pryor more substantially than I ever could.

For now, I'll add Pryor's name to the list of fallen angels who know the devil's territory better than anyone. Here's hoping he's adding some quality, gut-busting dark matter to the thermodynamic soup of the universe. We could use it.

MORE @ MORPHIZM

Monday, December 12, 2005

 

BLAST: Torture Amnesia, Victory in Iraq and Devendra as Dylan

Once again, true believers. Morphizm is back on a regular publishing schedule and destroying your idols as usual. This time around, No Logo superjourno and Morphizm contributor Naomi Klein drops in to interrogate -- pun intended -- the Western addiction to torture, James Kunstler smacks down Baghdad and Bush, and Jeff Pearce bows at the altar of Banhart. Let's roll:

Never Before! The Amnesiac Torture Debate
It was the "Mission Accomplished" of George W. Bush's second term, and an announcement of that magnitude called for a suitably dramatic location. But what was the right backdrop for the infamous "We do not torture" declaration? With characteristic audacity, the Bush team settled on downtown Panama City. It was certainly bold. An hour and a half's drive from where Bush stood, the US military ran the notorious School of the Americas from 1946 to 1984, a sinister educational institution that, if it had a motto, might have been "We do torture." MORE

Victory?
Victory in any conventional sense that Americans understand is out of the question, and the President's use of it is his biggest blunder since the "Mission Accomplished" stunt of 2003. The Iraq elections may succeed in establishing a legitimate government -- but then what? Will it govern for a month and a half and fall apart? MORE

Analyzing Crow
Devendra Banhart is the new millennium's childlike folk prophet. And on his latest effort Cripple Crow, he's not afraid to look war in the eye and wonder why. MORE

OK, that's it until...tomorrow? New content is making its way onto Morphizm with a quickness, while Aggregate plans on keeping you abreast of the headlines that hacks like CNN, MSNBC and Fox are too lame to announce. Until then, remember that the holidays are all about those around you. Including the ones you want to bomb to smithereens.

MORE @ MORPHIZM

Tuesday, December 06, 2005

 

Blast: Catching Up With Morphizm

Hell again, my friends, and no, that's not a typo. The combination of colds and holidays has kept Morphizm scattered, but we're pulling together nicely, thanks. Here's a healthy dose of what we've been up to lately, as well as glimpse of what's to come. Without ado:

We Are Not Moving Forward: An Interview with Dalek
Sometimes there is literally too much on the radar to be able to separate the bullshit from that which is singular and true. Dalek falls into the latter category. A multicultural, self-aware hybrid of industrial noise and hard-hitting hip-hop, they are far from the norm. And so it is with pride that Morphizm unveils its newly renovated Whatcha Missed section with a collective whose latest effort Absence channels Derrida and Run-DMC with equal investment and skill: MORE

RL Burnside 1926-2005
Over the course of his career Burnside not only shared a stage with the legendary Lightin' Hopkins and John Lee Hooker, but also with the Beastie Boys and the Jon Spencer Blues Explosion. His catalogue ranges from a sensational session of solo acoustic blues recorded in his living room circa '68, to the beat-heavy remix "Shuck Dub" which had scored the uneasy ending to an episode of the Sopranos three decades later. Burnside then, was the view from the crossroads; blues music's past and path ahead, as well as the payoff from its dirty midnight dealings with the devil: MORE

Should We Stay or Should We Go?
Neither Jack Murtha, the congressman who set the cable news networks afire this weekend, or Frank Rich, the lead dog on the New York Times Sunday op-ed page, mentioned the word oil once. I only mention it myself because it would be nice if we could have a coherent public discussion about staying or going in Iraq, and you can't do that without talking about the oil of the Middle East: MORE

Democracy's Dark Side
California is a place where actors turn virtual wars into real ones. It's also a place where they die failures: MORE

No Exit, No Return
Just because Sam Fuller's Street of No Return came out as the '90s broke doesn't mean it lacks punch. Quite the opposite: MORE

OK, that's it for now. Morphizm is getting updated almost daily with new content, media and treats, so log on and dig in. And don't forget to keep checking the blog for the latest updates and summary other rants. It's alive almost every day, whereas the Morphizm portal must wait for me to code, edit and upload the love before you can soak in it.

Tune in soon for interviews with Aeon Flux creator Peter Chung, DJ Spooky and Rob Swift on the state of turntablism in the War on Terror, and much more. For now, I need to drink some Q and dream of sleep.

MORE @ MORPHIZM

Friday, December 02, 2005

 

Aggregate: December 2, 2005

Those new to Morphizm may not yet realize how much we disparage and lampoon religion and all of its addled followers, but what else would you expect? After all, the world has given up on Santa Claus, unicorns, the Tooth Fairy, the Easter Bunny, Bigfoot and so many more human-invented fantasies in the past, but still can't yet manage dispensing with a millennia-old belief in a white dude with sandals creating everything in the universe in a few days? Cmon, people. Wake the fuck up.

Anyway, we never miss an opportunity to rip the Christian, Muslim, and other faith-based tools who continually make our lives harder by inserting their own laughable dogmas into them. And today's Aggregate is no different. Let's blaspheme!

Atheists Exchange Porn for Bibles
"Atheist Agenda, an atheist group at U Texas San Antonio, staged a Porno for Bibles event, where they gave free pornography to people who traded in religious scripture..." MORE HERE

Xtian Dolt Scott Stapp Cries. Others Laugh.

"He was telling us how he'd been to a show of ours in Florida, where he got up on stage, and that he was so thankful that we didn't kick him off," says the singer. "He was saying, 'You had no idea that you guys being so cool to me would inspire me to start a band, and for me to sell 30 million records, win a Grammy, VMAs, Billboard Awards . . .' He just went on and on, like some drunk guy who wouldn't shut the fuck up, while we just wanted to watch the game..." MORE HERE

In other news, ICANN is shelving the .xxx domain, robbing us of a veritable red-light district on the internet. Uh, have they been paying attention? Porn is the only thing that makes money on the net. Meanwhile, Halliburton is screwing us out of more money (what else is new?), and the Gulf of Tonkin scam that started the whole Vietnam War is outed as (what else is new?) a scam. Add to that nonsense the fact that a new Bush policy will help thousands of companies get out of reporting details of their toxic dumping, and that Diebold, who just yesterday were ordered out of North Carolina because they wouldn't open their voting machine code to regulators, have now been allowed to stay put, and you have one seriously fucked up country. Only in America!

Makes me want to curl up and read Mike Ward's film analysis. The dude is just sublime, as is his take on the mythology of none other than dog-star Benji. Brilliance.

Until next time.

MORE @ MORPHIZM

Thursday, December 01, 2005

 

Aggregate: December 1, 2005

Welcome, Morphizm nuts, to "Aggregate," our new roundup of news you can assimilate into your paranoid yet informed matrix and follow its conclusions to your holy hell. Or reading pleasure, you decide. I plan on ushering in a truncated version onto the Morphizm portal by the end of the year, but I have to pay the bills first. Mommy needs a brand new G4, punks!

Here's a mashup of happenings that ought to make you laugh or cry, depending on what drug you took this morning. Paxil fans might want to peep the incoming Ice Age, while normal caffeine and nicotine diehards will enjoy Pope Ratz condeming limbo kids to hell. Myself? I like the idea of seeing The Dick in Judgment at Nuremburg. Let's begin:

Dick Cheney the War Criminal? What Else is New?
"Vice-president Dick Cheney's burden on the Bush administration grew heavier yesterday after a former senior US state department official said he could be guilty of a war crime over the abuse of prisoners. Lawrence Wilkerson, who served as chief of staff to secretary of state Colin Powell from 2002 to 2005, singled out Mr Cheney in a wide-ranging political assault on the BBC's Today programme...." MORE HERE

Pope Joey Intervenes on God's Behalf. Again.
"According to Italian media reports on Tuesday, an international theological commission will advise Pope Benedict to eliminate the teaching about limbo from the Catholic catechism. The Catholic Church teaches that babies who die before they can be baptised go to limbo, whose name comes from the Latin for "border" or "edge", because they deserve neither heaven nor hell..." MORE HERE

You Made The New Ice Age Happen. Now Suck It Up.
"The ocean current that gives western Europe its relatively balmy climate is stuttering, raising fears that it might fail entirely and plunge the continent into a mini ice age. The dramatic finding comes from a study of ocean circulation in the North Atlantic, which found a 30% reduction in the warm currents that carry water north from the Gulf Stream..." MORE HERE

Diebold Chumps, Tucks Tail, Blames Microsoft, Runs.
"Diebold would rather lose all of its voting machine business in North Carolina than open its source code to state election officials as required by law, the Associated Press reports. Due to irregularities in the 2004 election traced to touch screen terminals, North Carolina has taken the very reasonable precaution of requiring vendors of electronic voting gizmos to place all of the source code in escrow. Diebold has objected to the possibility of criminal sanctions if they fail to comply, and argued for an exemption before Wake County Superior Court Judge Narley Cashwell. The judge declined to issue an exemption, and Diebold has concluded that it has no choice but withdraw from the state..." MORE HERE

Clinton Changes Mind on Withdrawal. No One Cares.
"Senator Hillary Rodham Clinton, in her strongest statement on the war in Iraq since visiting the country in 2003, yesterday defended her vote to authorize military action but harshly criticized President Bush's leadership and called for a plan to begin withdrawing troops next year..." MORE HERE

MORE @ MORPHIZM