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Anthology: Ten Years of TQ – Aram Yardumian

For nearly a decade, Times Quotidian has given me the chance to address specifics with a freedom I don't quite have in professional life. It's difficult to see a thread running through my articles, but behind it all I am still staring into the same materialist abyss reconnoitered by Sade, Darwin, Genet, and Bergman— none of whom I ever directly wrote about, but whose shadows fall over the anthropology of cruelty and suffering, zoological ambivalence, Lacanian superego, social dissolution mirrored in aesthetics, and a more real Real. Errol Morris's epistemological interrogations, Michael Gira's overwhelming sense of physical ecstasy, Thomas Mera Gartz's post-music fantasia, a non-Marxist sociology of Lascaux and Chauvet, Tommie … [Read more...]


‘But still I was ordered to believe, even where the ideas did not correspond with, even when they contradicted, the rational theories established by mathematics and my own eyes' – Augustine, Confessions 5:3 [6] 'For secret assassination the contrived accident is the most effective technique. When successfully executed, it causes little excitement and is only casually investigated' – A Study of Assassination, a CIA Manual According to Augustine, his break with Manichaeism came when he was ordered to see truth in descriptions of the stars and sky that defied all rational inquiry. In one of the most influential personal decisions ever made, he turned from a world of imagined ideas—gnostic metaphors for the eternal conflict of light and … [Read more...]


Casting JonBenet (2017), Netflix, Directed by Kitty Green — ‘Can you know what your prayers have set in motion?’– CT Dreyer ‘Ordet’ ‘A real whore should be able to attract by what she’s reduced to being’ – Jean Genet ‘The Screens’ It was a crime that re-defined perfect. On Christmas night 1996, the most sacrosanct American values—home, family, children’s innocence—even Christmas—were all violated in a single obscene act. Not since Hickock and Smith had the country at large felt so unsure of itself as a free and trusting society. And like England in the era of Brady and Hindley, the murder of JonBenet Ramsey led many Americans to imagine something unimaginable to them: an impulse so selfish that a child’s life could be … [Read more...]

Soul Sok Séga

Various Artists, Strut Records, 2016, LP or CD The geography of African diaspora music is most often thought of in trans-Atlantic terms: blues and jazz, soca and reggae, rumba and lundu. With a nod to North African styles on the Eurasian shores of the Mediterranean and Red Sea, the limits of cultural influence are sealed. But we often forget that the traffic in humans also went east, with slave communities on Mauritius, Réunion, Rodrigues, Agaléga, and beyond. These Indian Ocean islands are distant from the current of world events, and even far from seafaring routes. Nevertheless, historical African, European, Chinese, Arab, and Hindu communities have formed and, over the centuries, culturally synthesized Séga music is the … [Read more...]

An Interview with Bruce Licher – A Graphics Composition

Introduction and Three Part Conversation with TQ's Aram Yardumian and Graphic Artist-Musician Bruce Licher —   Prolegomenon, Part One, Part Two, Part Three Generously shared, below are selections from Bruce Licher's personal archives of his graphic design and letterpress art. . Flyer for the event at the Los Angeles Museum of Art for the performance on November 8th, 1980, featuring Bridge, Neef, Arrow Book Club (Urinals-related experimental rock combo), films by John Talley-Jones, Brent Wilcox and Bruce Licher, along with metal performance Front cover of a fictitious NEEF LP created by Bruce Licher in a silkscreen printing class at UCLA Slash magazine review of Project 197, along with an ad … [Read more...]

An Interview with Bruce Licher – Part 3

Introduction and Three Part Conversation with TQ's Aram Yardumian and Graphic Artist-Musician Bruce Licher  — Prolegomenon, Part One, Part Two, A Graphics Composition   Aram Yardumian: It’s hard for me to talk about the films without having seen them—I realize there is a  Sordide Sentimental video version of your work, it's difficult to find, but I’m interested in how you think the films fit into your overall aesthetic trajectory. Bruce Licher: Early on in my college days I was really fascinated with the industrial aesthetic. I was interested in Throbbing Gristle and the others, but more than that it was the old factories and there was just an aesthetic about that. I think a lot … [Read more...]

An Interview with Bruce Licher – Part 2

Introduction and Three Part Conversation with TQ’s Aram Yardumian and Graphic Artist-Musician Bruce Licher —   Prolegomenon, Part One, Part Three, A Graphics Composition   Aram Yardumian: After Neef, Project 197 and Bridge really took a very different direction, musically. What do you remember about this ‘transition’? Neef, "The Mean Free Path", Neef cassette, 1979   Bruce Licher: Neef was very collaborative and improvisational. Project 197 was my attempt at doing my own, well, project. I asked a couple of guys to come in, but most of the music on that was mine. Mark and Kevin added the drums and percussion. Brent Wilcox handled all the recording. Bridge just came out … [Read more...]

An Interview with Bruce Licher – Part 1

Introduction and Three Part Conversation with TQ's Aram Yardumian and Graphic Artist-Musician Bruce Licher — Prolegomenon, Part Two, Part Three, A Graphics Composition Aram Yardumian: Yours is a very intricate history, especially once all the editions of the records are considered. How did it all begin? Bruce Licher: When I was in college I had started going to see punk bands at the various clubs in Hollywood, and then eventually the earliest of the post-punk bands. It was really exciting, and there was a part of me that wanted to be part of that, too, so that's why I started to create music. But it was funny, even when I was going to see the punk bands in the clubs I kept thinking, well, I don't know … [Read more...]

An Interview with Bruce Licher – Prolegomenon

Introduction and Three Part Conversation with TQ's Aram Yardumian and Graphic Artist-Musician Bruce Licher — Part One, Part Two, Part Three, A Graphics Composition We are still tabulating the effects of the post-punk era on popular culture. Still drawing lines all over the genealogical surface, still overestimating Talking Heads, and still letting many of the real geniuses remain countersunken in the clutter. Mark E. who? Birthday what? If it’s less about aggressively capturing specific textures and more about tearing open the net wide enough for yet another generation of customers to swim in, the real innovators were too obsessed with the art to care. Among the many creative thunderclaps that burst over southern California in the … [Read more...]

An Interview with Eric Lunde – Part Three: The Aesthetics of the Crash

Eric Lunde: 33 Years of Assault & Chaos – A four part serial conversation with TQ’s Aram Yardumian and Wisconsinite Eric Lunde.  We talk about nonlinear dynamics, noise systems, auto racing, and the roots of the Industrial scene in America. We do not talk about Ed Gein. Serial Three-Part Interview Prolegomenon, Part One: Assaults on Culture, Part Two: The 80's Aram Yardumian: There is an interest in the concept of the collision, which I think of as akin to JG Ballard's but without the cloying sexual dimension. This is probably every old-time race fan's interest in the sport whether or not he admits it. How do you see—or how would you like to see—racing, performance, and sound art all coming together? Eric Lunde: Yeah, the … [Read more...]