I see there’s a new book about classic rock’s darkest day, Just a Shot Away. With what seems like a much-needed remedial main thread. (And I must say that the event is the one thing I utterly hate about the Grateful Dead.)
My most vivid encounter with Altamount horrors came when I mentioned the Gimme Shelter documentary to a music photographer (forgive me for not remembering his name) and he said he was at the show, taking photos. But it was such a drug-soaked and violently deranged scene — more like a riot than a concert — that after half an hour he put away the camera and volunteered to work in a First Aid tent.
It was the look on his face as he recounted this that froze me. This was someone who had witnessed an atrocity.
A nice berserk intro to the Malleus Maleficarum (Hammer of the Witches), which is a really freaky volume worth checking out of the library if you can stand a dip into a world rife with superstitious sexism.
On the demonic flipside, here’s a necklace of human tongues made by Sonnyboy Ed Gein:
A Japanese serial killer. The piece notes the utterly low rate of homicides in the country. I wondered about that context, and so read the stories of a couple of Japanese multiple-slayers. Most chilling: they were exactly like the sexual-sadist psychopaths from the US, Russia, South Africa, Mexico, Brazil, you name it. This is a poisonous combination of characteristics, nothing special to do with the environment. One biggest advantage for a serial killer in Japan is that murders are so rare the police aren’t looking for them. I mean, they found this creep out almost by accident.
Frank Henenlotter’s Basket Case (1981)
Stuart Gordon’s Dagon (2001)
Sam Rami’s Drag Me To Hell (2009)
Tomas Alfredson’s Let the Right One In (2009)
Various, Technicolor Dreams and Black & White Nightmares (2014) A collection of rare cartoons from the ’20s, ’30s and ’40s, all of which are strange and some downright frightening.
I have one I got in Las Vegas many years ago:
Trot it into a window for Halloween. But the boneface-rocker is a remarkably durable image:
And finally, one of the most famous …