Coring A Pop Song

June 1st, 2006 | researchmaterial

Geeta Dayal:

At the EMP Conference in Seattle this past weekend, Noriko Manabe of CUNY Graduate Center gave a really intriguing–if scarily dystopian–talk about the way things are heating up in the Japanese commercial market. Now, the iPod is a popular fetish object in much the same way as it is here, but iTunes Music Store Japan is not doing so well. This, she says, is partly because Sony Music Japan, the biggest Japanese label, refuses to do business with Apple, instead marketing their own proprietary music service called the Sony Mora. But downloading music onto your cell phone, and listening to it off of your cell phone (which I can’t imagine sounds very good under the best of circumstances), trumps them all.

The difference is that instead of downloading full songs, Manabe says, many people in Japan prefer to just download the choruses–30 seconds of the hit single.

This is different from a polyphonic ringtone; this is more akin to downloading a song onto your iPod. Some would argue that a lot of J-pop, which tops the charts in these downloads, is pretty much all chorus to begin with. But it fascinates me that this is the same country that produced the 50-CD Merzbox, Les Rallizes Denudes, Acid Mothers Temple, and Hanatarash… that 30-minute extended bliss-jams by major-label act (in Japan, at least) Boredoms could coexist with 30-second downloads of major-label choruses. I’m not against it, but I am bemused by it.

Your Nightmare Image For The Day

June 1st, 2006 | photography, researchmaterial

A calf with two heads has been born in a Siberian village near a nuclear plant, website said Tuesday.

Naumovka village is located in dangerous proximity to one of Russia’s largest nuclear sites — the closed Seversk territory, the former secret Tomsk-7 site, where weapons-grade plutonium used to be produced. In 1993 an explosion at the plant allowed radioactive substances to leak, mostly affecting two nearby villages — Naumovka and Georgiyevka. Local residents appealed to the courts, but numerous checks failed to detect any genetic mutations. The birth of a two-headed calf that did not survive has allowed the villagers to call for a new assessment of the pollution.

Dutch Paedophiles Form Political Party

June 1st, 2006 | researchmaterial

Dutch pedophiles are launching a political party to push for a cut in the legal age for sexual relations to 12 from 16 and the legalization of child pornography and sex with animals, sparking widespread outrage.

The Charity, Freedom and Diversity (NVD) party said on its Web site it would be officially registered Wednesday, proclaiming: “We are going to shake The Hague awake!”

The party said it wanted to cut the legal age for sexual relations to 12 and eventually scrap the limit altogether.

“A ban just makes children curious,” Ad van den Berg, one of the party’s founders, told the Algemeen Dagblad (AD) newspaper.

“We want to make pedophilia the subject of discussion,” he said, adding the subject had been a taboo since the 1996 Marc Dutroux child abuse scandal in neighboring Belgium. “We want to get into parliament so we have a voice. Other politicians only talk about us in a negative sense, as if we were criminals…”

(Sent by Chris Wichtendahl, who says: “I saw this today and thought of a comment you made (I think it was in the Apparat books) about how all the stuff you made up for Transmet was coming true. Here’s another one, ala Right Love.”)