Antibourgeois Artistry

Notes:

  • The first part of this essay was originally posted on West Coast Reactionaries on November 5th, 2015, complete with images, hyperlinks and so forth.
  • “Further Nonsense” was removed from West Coast Reactionaries, but I have included it here due to its relevance, and the fact that it was originally a part of the original article instead of something separate.


NobodyTM and Postmodern Antimodernism

On the various fringes of the alternative-o-sphere (something the alternative Right exists within as a manifestation of ideas in a philosophisociopoliticical shape) there exist critiques, attacks, doubtings and hostile attitudes towards the modern world and its various oh-so poisonous delicious fruits. In amid suspicions of certain historical truths, the usefulness of certain theories, and all manner of general paranoia, distrust and scepticism there does exist an infinite number of individuals ranging from moderates like Alex Jones, to radicals like David Duke; from pseudo-scientist-philosopher-psychonauts like the late Terence McKenna, to the always “interesting” David Icke. Among the less political and worldly, and more avantgarde, artistic and proto-spiritual individuals stands NobodyTM.

It must be stated before I make any bold assertions that due to the nature of NTM’s work, it can be difficult to pin-down any certain video, song or image and draw from it one clear message or intention. This can be done more easily with some things – and it’s obvious enough that his work isn’t celebrating much of the modern world – but there does exist, due to presentation and the absurdist framework, a sort of subjectivism; much of the work is open to multiple interpretations. This ought to be kept in mind during this little article.

Anyways — what am I even talking about? “Who or what is this ‘NobodyTM’?” I hear people ask. The answer is manyfaced and a little obscure. Let me recount how I first came across the title “NobodyTM” and the things catalogued under such a title.

What must have been two or three years ago, I remember browsing a notorious imageboard’s politics section, where I came across a post referencing several URLs leading to strange YouTube videos I couldn’t really understand. I knew I felt uncomfortable watching these videos, but at the same time the content resonated with a more visceral area of my spirit; I was unnerved and I felt psychologically molested, but simultaneously I felt cleansed. I watched one or two of the videos and thought nothing more of it at the time — I was (and still am) used to seeing strange things on the internet I oughtn’t overconsider.

A while later, I recall the process repeating. Following URLs from a demonic area of the internet, I found myself again at scenes of images layered over oneanother of people acting violently, lustfully, insanely, irrationally; other scenes of political leaders making speeches in the background whilst in the foreground I was met with what might be pills, computers or porn. Other scenes might include religious or mystical themes, images, symbols and ideas. It was as if humanity itself was being condensed into a single short-ish video; Wagner’s ideal artform, however… twisted. Something was never quite right in the videos. There were elements which made me uncomfortable, made me want to look away or cover my ears — but I never did. As if all human expressions were simultaneously injected into me; as if I was forced-fed a combination of honey and krokodil before being thrust into the deathly cold of space, but before freezing to death, observing the stars dance together in the birthing of new galaxies. I believe this was my first conscious understanding of the skull beneath the skin, to use a Victorian expression; being presented with the nastiness bourgeois life tries so very hard to ignore — humanity in both its good and bad (but mostly bad in the case of these strange videos).

The videos had short, naked, stripped-back, almost underdeveloped titles like “ep4,” or were sometimes a blunt, out-in-the-open religious term like “firmament.” One video was simply titled “you” and it still exists on YouTube:

I won’t run-through the specifics of this short film — I’m not a reviewer or a critic in any proper sense. In any case, I think it’s important to avoid slapping too much of my own interpretation/experience onto people who are yet to see NTM’s work. Thus I recommend readers watch it for themselves and make their own judgements.

“You” is, in my opinion, one of NTM’s best films due to its accessible length and its no-nonsense exposition of several social phenomena which many people participate in, but even know themselves isn’t quite right at some level. It graphically pushes before us things which might make our skin crawl or our brows furrow; there isn’t much use of words — even the words spoken serve a secondary role — as the visual and aural set the tone. The tone, the spirit, the feeling of NTM’s work is what immediately latches viewers to it, pulling at some of their basest emotions: anger, lust and curiosity. The deliberate pushing before people of that which is rotten, that which is hollow, that which is squalid, and that which is vulgar often invokes a negative reaction in many of those who are perceiving these things naively — from the outside — for the first time. I remember showing a very politically far-Left leaning friend another of NTM’s films, “OUROBOROS” to which he angrily sneered that it was “just some anti-Obama propaganda.” One can approach NTM’s films at different levels, and he understands this very clearly. My friend’s comment wasn’t wholly untrue, but it was dreadfully shallow and shows that my friend was only willing to go so far to expose himself totally to something he didn’t like. A great deal of NTM’s content requires sincerity from the recipient; it requires mental nakedness, essentially. One takes the content for what it is to the best of one’s abilities. There are no instructions, no clear goals for the audience, nothing overtly specific, just an honest, semi-artistic exposition to reality framed in abstract and often mystical ways.

The content produced by NTM, or according to the About section of his website, the content “edited” by him, is more an overall experience than a mere watching or listening. One is attacked emotionally, mentally and spiritually all at once; hence it is never just images and sounds which make up the films, but the feel — something achieved by colour, sound, volume, texture, shapes, as well as our pre-determined emotional-political reactions to various stimuli. Images are distorted and recoloured, cut and cropped and mutilated. A serene moment can become violently animated by a mere change in hue. It is in this dynamic environment scenes blur into oneanother, shifting and mutating. From bright to dark, upwards to downwards, peaceful to violent, clear to unclear, dominate to submissive. The human figure is frequently employed as a conduit — a living, breathing epitome of a certain emotion or idea, which can twist in seconds. For example, vanity and chthonic ego-obsessions we are surrounded by and encouraged to engage in are displayed as a woman or young man recording themselves speaking of their lives. Clips presumably uploaded on YouTube and other websites originally are taken and their intention inverted. Instead of energy projecting into the individuals narcissistically bleating about themselves from onlookers and encouraging forces, energy coming from the vlogger is projected outwards towards the recipient of the film. Nearly every scene is a shock-scare, to use one phrase. Not that they are animalistically frightening, but these often strange and niche displays of various types are forced into an area where they are not desired for the original intention if at all. Values are inverted in more ways than one. Safe to say, much of NTM’s video content is not ordinary by any means.

Certain films are centered around a specific topic. For instance, “UFO ZONE” is about UFOs, abductions and other super spooky phenomena. “HIVE PSYCHOSIS” is about big pharma, prescription drugs and psychochemical warfare. There is never anything put forward in these films other than a sort of “gotcha” exposition. That isn’t to say the films are shallow or superficial in nature, but the overarching theme is merely an exposing of truth, of facts, of reality. As NTM puts it in the aforementioned About section, they are his way of saying “I was here” regarding our collective, many-sided crisis.

Two “discs” and an introduction to them are hosted under the Video section of nobodytm.com. Covered/exposed within these two hour-long films is a huge number of individual topics, and as I’ve said I won’t be “reviewing” them as they explain themselves far more adequately than I could. Expect, however, everything from drugs to sex, from biology to metaphysics.

The bulk of NTM’s video work is filed under the Episodes section. Each episode is unique, and although specific scenes are occasionally recycled (as is the case the openings of “you” and “ep5” (season 1)), there are clear differences between the focus and mood of each film. Some are more focused — generally, not exclusively — on sex in culture, some are more focused on politics, some propaganda, some consumerism, et cetera. There isn’t a clear agenda, either, which is very refreshing. The only outward message perceivable is to be sceptical about the world we’re living in; to see our present epoch in its realness: in its shallowness, materialism, hedonism, and so on. NTM’s video work cuts through bourgeois normalcy like a shard of razor-sharp obsidian. It pushes the viewer to question the world around him in a profound sense. Jonathan Bowden was speaking about Julius Evola here, but I think the same could be said for NTM and his work at one level:

What is life really about? Is life really about shopping? Is life really about making more and more money? Is life really about bourgeois status when one already has enough to live on? Is life really about eating yourself to death? These are the sorts of things that [this] viewpoint pushes before people, which is why the majority will always push it away.

Myself and the individual behind the NTM project have spoken briefly – mostly at points when I wasn’t in the best of states, to my regret. Regardless, in one or two of our exchanges he explained to me that there is a great divide between him and the mask he wears when he creates. He said to me something along the lines of — I can’t access the conversations anymore so I have to paraphrase — “Give a man a mask, and he’ll tell you the truth.” [Oscar Wilde] I found this to be both a profoundly truthful statement, as well as a troubling one concerning my own endeavours. I came to the conclusion much later that it’s true on a certain level, but beyond that it isn’t a useful statement at all. “Give a man an ego and it can quickly interfere with the truth.” seems to me to be a more complete maxim (but maybe that’s just my ego speaking). Nevertheless, this is an area worth being aware of due to the aforementioned absence of the creator behind the one called NobodyTM, but of course plenty of the latter’s shenanigans.

The About section of NTM’s website is the only real window into the man behind it all (and I refer to NTM as male due to his creative tendencies), but aside from the clear evidence that this man is very well-read and well-learned, there’s nothing aside from his aesthetic tastes to go on — and even those are laden with symbolism and metaphor. This is part of what makes NTM so interesting and so important, the fact that principles, ideas, knowledge, comes first and foremost. There is a lightness to things, an irony, a knowing “nudge-nudge” which pops up from place to place. My guess is that it’s to soften the blow; to balance the inevitable anger, confusion and sadness which is partly what his work induces for a lot of people.

Interestingly enough, there is a chatroom on his website. Since deleting his YouTube channel (hence his videos on YouTube are hosted on other channels) all of his content has been hosted here, and is the go-to place for those who want to speak to NTM directly. Very occasionally (at least in my experience) he’ll appear in the chatroom talking to people, answering questions and interacting with his audience. It brings some much-appreciated humanity (the good side) into the mix; it’s a port in the storm.

Another important thing to mention about NTM which was confirmed to me via conversation is his apolitical approach, and it’s an approach I fully understand and respect. There have been instances where people have claimed NTM was “against ‘degeneracy'” and was “Right-wing” (I myself even thought the latter to begin with). These assertions, although not inconceivable, are too plainly put to be of any value. A more sensible notion, in my opinion, is that NTM is concerned with matters of a priestly orientation caste-wise, not just because of his extensive use of religious themes, but made evident by the clear esoteric, perennial and metaphysical elements to his work. These things are — by their very nature — antihedonistic, antimaterialistic and antimodern. I want to avoid making too bold a claim without NTM’s own verification that what I’m saying is accurate, but this is the crux of his standpoint from as clear as I can interpret it. This is made extremely evident when one reads the “mantra” displayed on the front page of his website or watches the video also there. I think it’s fair to assume NTM has realized certain truths via his studies which are of an esoteric, transcendental nature. The last three lines of his “mantra” are especially indicative:

ENTER BEYOND

BECOME BEING

YOU ARE NOBODY

I’ll resist the temptation to blather on about how this could be interpreted, and instead let NTM’s content itself direct people and set events in motion as it has done for me and many others. Follow the links, look-up terms and ideas and always ask “Why?”

Probably my favourite area of NTM’s work is his music, displayed on the Albums section of his website where there is a list of recent albums, an embedded media player and links to downloads the albums for free. Note: Unfortunately as new albums appear on this list, older ones are knocked off it. If you want older music from NTM, contact him via his chatroom, try a websearch or contact me as I do have copies of some of his earlier music.

The albums NTM creates are parallel to his videos as mentioned in his website’s About section. There are four main styles which seem most prevalent in his discography (as of the writing of this article) which are:

  1. Songs with easily recognizable beats and melodies, such as “Dedication” on the Dreams of Infinity album. These songs genre-wise are often floating around electronica or techno and last a few minutes each.
  2. Songs which are edits/remixes of pre-existing songs such as “Close the Door” on the Afterlife Syntax album. These songs are typically soul, disco or pop tracks which have been recycled, lasting a few minutes each.
  3. Songs of the ambient genre such as “Twin Pink Bunk Beds” on the Tu Fui Ego Eris album. These tracks last a few minutes and can contain underlying pulses, but aren’t melodic and are, typical enough of the ambient genre, seemingly intended at times to induce certain mental states such as relaxation.
  4. Songs of the ambient genre which last over twenty minutes. These songs are less entertainment and more a tool as just mentioned concerning this genre. Headwaters from the album of the same name is one such track of this sort.

In amid NTM’s massive discography there are tracks which point at certain things in certain ways. The track “Alex Bones” from the New Manufactured Music album is about the radioshow host and film-maker Alex Jones. The track “Vacation” from the Ghost of Paradise album features lines taken from American Airlines advertisements framed in an interesting way. The track “An Alchemical Passage” on the Woken Vestige album is an especially interesting piece of music for reasons hinted at in the title alone. Throughout all of this art there are little hints to things, little clues and little shoves in certain directions. As stated, it’s down to the audience to take from the content as much as they like or nothing at all. Initiative and willpower are all that’s required. As the ancient saying goes, “Whoever has ears to hear, let them hear” (Mark 4:9-12).

As with the videos to appreciate the music of NTM the reader will need to go to the Album section of his website and have a listen at what’s there themselves. There is in the music — even within individual albums — a great diversity of sound. I’m very sure that anyone who gives it a listen will find at least one or two albums to their liking nomatter their ordinary musical tastes.

Attention to detail is what makes NTM’s content so intriguing on a sensible level, and this even extends to the the artwork which goes along with his albums. Distorted and cut-apart images are fastened together, layered upon oneanother edited to form visuals extremely effective by their own measure. Biblical themes, references to modern living, detailed textures and fantastic use of colour are just some of the things used to create stunning visuals. The look of NTM’s album art is equally a part of the overall aesthetic as is the design of his website. Flashes of colour here, mythical references there, all play a part in developing the complex and unique aesthetic NTM has achieved.

The artwork of NTM is clearly modern in form. The reuse and repurposing of content — editing, as he calls it — makes up the bulk of what exists on nobodytm.com. The using of modern forms, of contemporary styles, to create a fundamentally antimodern message is a trope which does exist elsewhere — and is the general focus of this piece of writing. Using the enemy’s weapons against them, to use a slightly crude term, is an effective tool. Reverse-engineering.

Further Nonsense

Presenting an antibourgeois message in bourgeois packaging is what Jonathan Bowden and Andrea Lioy did with the 2005 film Venus Flytrap. The plot is as follows:

Doctor Mordred wants to replace humans with plants. A misanthrope, he lures Dr. Falicia Fairweather into Venus’ trap. Represented by six incarnations, she wrestles with Mordred. Are they different versions of one another? We follow their battle via images of light, air, dance, horror, water, fire, tarot cards, masks and swords. Supervised by a Master of Ceremonies, each gender makes “love.” Who will win? Can you wait ’till the end to find out?

I won’t spoil the film and review it here. Nor will I review it at all, actually, as Troy Southgate beat me to it nearly a decade ago. What I ask the reader to keep in mind is the idea that certain antimodern and antiliberal ideas can be very clearly expressed through modern and liberal forms. This is a power the Right is actually realizing at this very moment.

Modernism aesthetically is elitist and snobbish itself, but modern thinking which encapsulates liberal-mindedness, the loss of the Will to Power resulting an inclusive, pathologically altruistic attitude — especially in the case of Europeans — is something else. As I’m sure the reader is aware, our society at the present time has absolutely no time at all for glory, for greatness, for strength, for masculinity and for anything Nietzschean, to put it one way. The excuse it gives is that these things are the causes for various alleged oppressions and oppression is always bad because equality is always good. What the modern Left fails to understand is that, firstly, you cannot permanently reconfigure half of human nature just because you think the parts you want to eliminate exist only in meanies (they do not), and secondly, energy cannot be destroyed; you cannot remove the heroic and elitist from a culture, you can only displace it into another area.

So, where once we had aristocratic ideals evident in some shape or another in the mainstream, they now exist in the avantgarde; in subculture; in the shadows. The internet and everything blossoming from it is evident of this. The danger with the internet of course is that everything is a simulation; everything is an illusion to even more an extent than ordinarily. This, however, is being steadily overcome at least for those of any worth. The most important thing we must do — regardless of politics — is embrace the skull beneath the skin. All else follows that. Liberalism and liberal-mindedness must be cast aside; mediocrity must be denied; dullness and greyness must be corrupted with colour, and conformity must be ignored. Everything in the present society rests upon the notion that mediocrity is a moral good and one person transcending the present and becoming stronger tomorrow is morally ill because someone else will not do the same. Liberalism as a philosophy holds mediocrity – equality in filth – as the highest ideal. This is to be scorned.

There is a difference to be made between an action and its desired effects. Simply because you portray an emotion via impressionism in modern painting does not mean that the emotion is itself acceptable or moral in relation to modernity. This is exactly what defines “postmodern antimodernism” as I phrase it.

As has been noted many times by various individuals, an idea is eternal and stays consistent regardless of the contextual cultural-political forms it takes. The idea of hierarchy itself is evident in the Right-wing or conservative politics of a century ago as it is evident in (albeit the fringes of) the Right-wing or conservative politics of the contemporary world. This central idea that there is the ability to and a purpose in differentiating between them and us is the axis of all human identity and ways in which we affirm who we fundamentally are in relation to different parts of ourselves, our communal group, and even the broader universe and reality.

This message is perennial. It doesn’t need to be find itself specifically embodied in political movements or social activism because it is inherent in each person’s very soul. We are all borne of something prior, something anterior to ourselves; we then go forth unto the world and execute our Will in whatever fashion — sometimes carrying part of us into the next generation: a willed, purposeful action which extends beyond that which is purely self-centered. The modern wishes to halt this process, and yet they still identify with their own name and some even have children. They will never win.

It has been noted also that the modern Left is actually moving away from equality as its calling card, and into existentialism; clearly a dead-end unless one ends one’s life to cut-short that which is prior to oneself. We are all the product of something before ourselves in both the biological sense as well as the spiritual sense. The modern existentialist craving for individualism (insomuch as individual freedom from perceived oppressions) is inherently problematic as is presupposes freedom to be realizable in the context of a social order where survival is always guaranteed. As I’ve blathered on about before, as many others have, these same moderns are bringing upon themselves competition in the form of migration — the modern has achieved a full cycle whereby there will always be a social dynamic differentiating them and us, and has thus enabled himself to whine forever lest he’s put out of his misery. Those of us on the fringes of bourgeois modernity are largely as prepared as we can be intellectually. We accept reality for what it is without lying to ourselves about our inner nature.

The next two areas to be prepared are the spiritual and physical. The former can only be achieved through some form of ascesis and the later is reliant upon circumstance respective of who, what, when and where shit hits the fan (if it ever does) – although self-reliance is a good first start (itself being a combination of all three areas). Where the modern progressive has lulled themselves into illusory hysteria replete with cognitive dissonance and slave morality, we differentiated ought to rip down the veil and step beyond our collective Shadow. The idea of to Be must become reality to us again; we must deprogram, rewrite and unshackle ourselves from the norm, from RealityTM, from LifeLTD., to recover the notion of Being irrespective of syntax and…

fin

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