Is Dylan having another moment? I think he might be. It feels about time for one and I vividly recall writing at length about a whole box of his stuff, as though it was last week because it was. We also have a plethora of new books in the shop, courtesy of You Know Who and I should really be bringing you titles much in the same way as a perfectly mad waiter serves an entrée. But what to choose, in the same fortnight that someone unearthed what may be the first and only recording we have of Frida Kahlo? Not wishing to presume upon your particular mood on whichever day this might find you, I shall go with my gut and bank on your satisfaction.
As far as naughty books go, this one is pretty up there. ‘Droit De Regard’ by french photographer, Jacques Bergaud (Filipacchi, 1984) is an eye-catching publication and one that is unlikely to fail in sparking that age old discussion, regarding the thin and intimate line between erotica and pornography. Bergaud laid out his work in a thorough inspection from A through Z and when I tell you that these shots form the entirety of a tasteful selection, you are likely to understand me. The title itself is open to translation; right of access, right of inspection, right of way, to the upstanding side of that line? We can discuss it and you can draw your own conclusions, you know, based on how you feel or whatever. Personally, I feel like some of the photographs might border on pornography but I also think that’s okay so long as your boat doesn’t rock anyone else’s boat in an undesirable motion. I had this very same conversation with a friend of mine, Ellen Pearson not long ago. She is a director of feminist pornography and is on a mission to reclaim desire and if that peaks your interest then you can find her here and you probably should. As for Mr Bergaud, you know where to find me should you need more.
The work continues apace and I have been shooting mad roll this past couple of weeks. Miss June (New Zealand) are, by all accounts, something of a bang between Sonic Youth and Le Tigre. I read that somewhere but it’s totally true, which isn’t always the case. Having committed to something of a night out yet utterly devoid of direction, The Lady Ess suggested we try The Old Blue Last for some high quality impromptu noise. I made it about halfway up their crooked staircase before sanctioning whatever was going on in that room. She asked me if I’d bought my camera and I needn’t have asked why. B&W film loves indoor bands, especially ones playing TOBL and especially Miss June. The grain is obnoxious and working as intended. Annabel Liddell is a presence to be reckoned with and the band are loud in the best of ways. They are also all genuinely nice people which is usually enough to ingratiate one with a cat that values sonic potency and human positivity above all else. Should you find yourself Stateside and in Brooklyn tonight, you can catch them at The Union Pool, supporting the excellent Twen with fellow badasses, Ghost King. Follow me this way for tickets.
Martin Scorsese’s been taking time off from influencing Todd Phillip’s Joaqer Phoenix more than thrifty-five years after the fact to direct a new Dylan documentary for Napflicks. ‘Rolling Thunder Revue: A Bob Dylan Story by Martin Scorsese’ [yet another crucially succinct tag] is pretty wonderful and necessarily dreamlike. It is also timely and intrinsically naked. There is also footage of Patti Smith and all those mother lovers that you have not seen before. Really. Scorsese, who first caught a version of Dylan on film in 1978’s ‘The Last Waltz’, also directed 2005’s ‘No Direction Home’ which is one of my favourite things and so I had that confidence going in. Far from being about the truth, this is a piece of film more concerned with the chaos of those years and the carnivalesque tour that followed Dylan’s divorce from his first wife, Sara. Anyone who’s experienced ‘I’m Not There’ knows just how messy that was and just how broken it left parts of him. There is a bit in ‘Rolling Thunder’ where Dylan posits to Joan Baez that they might have ended up together if she hadn’t decided to get married. It is a rare and wonderful moment of candour between two old friends. She reminds him that it was, in fact he who got married first. Dylan takes a moment to collect his thoughts from over the years and the answer, when it comes, is archetypal Dylan: “Yeah, but I married the woman I love.” Never one to be outdone, she is back at him in a second and her response is no less devastating.
“And I married the man I thought I loved.”
JD - TACOCAT