Saturday, May 19, 2018

Article: 'Catholic Church Sexual Abuse Cover Ups' by Roberta Downing

Catholic Church Sexual Abuse Cover Ups
Article by Roberta Downing, May 18, 2018

Long before the #MeToo campaign and women marching on stairs to stand up for their rights to be treated fairly, the Catholic Church in Rome had already become the world’s most notorious pedophile rings in history. The abuse can be traced as far back as the 1950’s but it wasn’t until the 1980’s that silence was broken by the parents and child victims and began telling their stories that were inflicted upon them by priests, bishops and cardinals. There is no way of knowing if these practices were occurring prior to the 1950’s.
The most horrifying aspect is that every Pope that held office since that time has covered these crimes up by moving priests and bishops to other parishes around the world. Paying bribes to the families and victims to keep their mouths shut in order to salvage the “good” reputation of the Holy Roman Church. The pontiffs even went as far as to conceal the crimes or outright deny them without any punishment given to the sex offenders.
It could not be truer that power is absolute corruption. Nowhere is this seen in covering up the sex crimes while continuing their crimes against women, specifically sex prior to marriage, birth control and abortion- all of which do nothing but suppress women and bolster men into believing that men are just not accountable for their actions.
Recently the Karadima case won some notoriety in forcing Pope Francis to take action and since then, yesterday 34 Chilian Bishops resign over even more sex scandals. Francis talks a good game however he has not brought the perpetrators to legal justice and it seems as if he will continue the same lack of action as the former pontiffs in doing nothing but protecting the predators.
It is time for the people to make a stand and hold the Church, the Pontiffs, and the predators responsible and demand that those who have been found guilty within the Church of such crimes be legally arrested outside of the church where they can stand trial in a real court of law for their crimes. How long must our children must be put at risk by the Church? Isn’t it bad enough that our children are put at risk every day by the pedophiles in our own communities?
If women can stand up and say “Me Too”, if Corey Feldman can stand up and say there are pedophile rings in Hollywood, if women and march up the stairs at entertainment events to show solidarity and demand equal rights, why then do we not do the same to take the abusive powers of a corrupted church away and force them to submit to the laws of man and furthermore, force them to stop picking and choosing which biblical laws best suit them rather than holding them to each and every word of their biblical scriptures?

Wednesday, May 16, 2018

Poet Interview: STEVEN MICHAEL PAPE (third interview)

Interview with poet STEVEN MICHAEL PAPE

You are releasing a new anthology of poems in 2018. Is there anything you can reveal about it before it comes out?
The new book contains over fifty poems touching on subjects like homelessness, gang culture, poverty and other issues in society today. There are also a few nature-themed poems that touch on the various seasons and how they make me feel. The book should be out in June or July; the book itself is complete and I'm waiting on a cover being painted and designed by my friend Tim Bennett. I've seen an example of what he's working on and it's a great, strong themed cover.

In our last interview a year ago you mentioned your previous collections are being favorably reviewed. Are those still being discovered by reviewers today?
I still have people mentioning them, who discovered them either through others or chanced upon a copy in a library somewhere.

What is the title of your new anthology? How did you go about choosing a title that would reflect on the included poems?
The title is 'A Weapon Called The Word.' It was taken from the opening poem, one of the first I wrote. It’s kind of a play on words as it fits in with several poems and represents the strength words can have if used correctly.

How do you define the correct use of words in relation to your writing? Does putting it into practice result in more effective verses?
If for example I'm using a word that isn't used regularly I will research the word, how it can be used so that I'm not making mistakes or using the word out of context. Practice does help. I'm better at fitting words into poems than earlier books and poems. With this book the poems seemed to flow well and weren't difficult to write or organize.

Did it take as much time to write and compile poems for A Weapon Called The Word as your previous anthologies? Your older books cover similar subjects as your new project. Are your new poems approaching the topics differently?
I started writing the poems for this new collection just before 'Life In The Past Frame' was released. So it was about a year in the writing, but they were only rough drafts and ideas. I had to collect everything and start the editing process. Some of the subjects I've written about previously may be revisited, but this is in no way a rehashing of past poems. My poems reflect society and it changes from each book. For example knife crimes and homelessness have risen since my last book in 2017, so this is something I wanted to write about. I like to try different approaches with my writing. Some poems might rhyme while others have more dialogue.

Did your research you based your work on come from newspapers and/or the internet? Since Trump was elected president in the U.S. there has been speculation of war in the news. Is the threat of war a concern in England, or is it mostly viewed as media spin?
I don't read newspapers so some have been articles on the internet, radio news reports etc. If you are writing factually you need to research and make sure you are putting in the relevant facts or terminology. I think the only way Trump has affected English society is that no one seems to like him very much and views him as a fake politician. I suppose there's always a threat but I still believe the media manipulates what they want us to believe.

How much did you revise your new collection of poems before you were finally satisfied?
I tend to first write rough drafts of the poems then do the proper editing, changing lines and words around so it depends on the poem. I've been lucky to have an editor (Rose Terranova Cirigliano) who is able to transfer these into the book and change any that I might want doing. Along the way I've taken some poems out and replaced them with stronger ones.

Has Rose Terranova Cirigliano edited your anthologies since you began publishing or is the arrangement recent? How much does having an editor help your publishing?
This is the first time I've worked with her. I had an editor several years ago for 21st Century Wasteland, Lewis Crystal, who sadly passed away a year after the book’s release. Rose took over the job of publishing an anthology book called FM that Lewis started so I’ve known her for years. She's a great editor, she goes with ideas and imagination to create aspects of this book that look professional and well planned out. Having a good editor takes a huge strain of a writer as they input and change the poems if requested and offer support and advice.

How much experience did Cirigliano have at editing prior to you working together? How much format editing has she done for A Weapon Called The Word?
Rose has a wealth of experience in editing. She's a retired teacher so she understands the beauty words can offer, the power they can attract. She's been editing FM anthology for a long time and she's edited quite a lot of other books for poets and writers. In A Weapon Called The Word I sent her the contents list, then the first ten edited poems and continued that way. I was open to her ideas and she came up with some clever editing, a nice introduction piece well written and other little touches.

How many ideas did Cirigliano contribute to the layout while she was editing?
So many! From the introduction piece to the layout. I'd sent her the contents list how I wanted it to be. Throughout the book we both had ideas. One of mine was to ask certain people to do reviews as blurbs and two starting pages so it draws the reader in. I have some nice words written by several people who know my work and several by people whose work I admire. Like Alan G Parker who has written several books on Sid Vicious and Steve Ignorant the ex-Crass frontman kindly sent a few nice words after I sent him a selection from the book.

How many books has Alan G. Parker written about Sid Vicious? How would you rate the research he did on the Sex Pistols bassist? Would there ever be a collaborative effort between you and he?
Alan has written Sid’s Way, No One Is Innocent and Vicious: Too Fast To Live. He did Satellite: Sex Pistols and also wrote and directed Who Killed Nancy. Alan did a great job researching Sid, from his early years, school records and talking to those who knew him. A collaboration is not in the cards as Alan directs more these days than writes.

Did Parker do a good job putting Who Killed Nancy together? I’ve read Vicious: Too Fast To Live and I found it to have some interesting theories. What are your thoughts on the Vicious/Spungen incident if you have read the book and seen the movie?
He did an amazing job visiting places in New York. It’s a great piece of work. My thoughts on the Vicious/Spungen theory are that Nancy was killed by someone else who she let into Room 100. There are witnesses interviewed in Parker’s film who state Vicious was unconscious on the bed after taking Tuinol tablets when they visited. Sid and Nancy had a substantial amount of money from gigs Sid had done so I think this was the reason for a struggle which Nancy died as a result of. Sid was a convenient suspect for the police as it was an open and shut case in their opinion.

Where in the book are you placing the blurbs? Some authors place them on the back cover and others place them on the first pages before the actual text. Where do you think is the most fitting place where readers will notice them?
I'm putting reviews on the back cover and on the first pages. I think on the back cover is effective as the reader can get a genuine feel of what the book is about from others perspective, reviews before the text should hopefully further confirm that.

How much feedback have your collections received from the English punk scenes and punk scenes in other countries in the past year? If you’ve been corresponding with punks outside of England, do fans generally relate to your books in similar ways?
I guess punk fans in the U.K might like the more political poems but I couldn't really say as I've not had much contact. There is an author who has been working on a book about Sid for years. I've corresponded with him and sent him a poem I did about Sid last year that might hopefully be included in his book.

Who is the author you submitted your poem about Sid Vicious to, and how long have you been corresponding with him? Has he been publishing for a long time? If so, how many publications does he have out?
The author is Brett Dunford. He’s been researching the book and writing it for four years. He released a documentary called, 'Sad Vacation' a few years ago that I have yet to see. I've only just started corresponding with him. We had a great online chat about Sid and he's sending me the first chapter of his upcoming book to read shortly.

Tim Bennett has designed cover art for 21st Century Wasteland, Observations With Half Closed Eyes and A Closed Mind Is An Open Trap. Does his latest piece for you show how comfortable he has become representing your poems?
Tim kindly offered to design the cover for this new book after I sent him a selection of poems. He choose one called 'This Is England' as the inspiration for the cover. His cover art always touches on the poems inside and this new cover is some amazing work.

How would you describe the piece Bennett designed for This Is England, and what aspects of the poem does he capture?
Bennett's artwork, without giving too much away, encapsulates the England poem and others. There are subtle references in the piece that the reader after studying the poems will be able to relate to.

How do your nature themed poems fit with your poems about homelessness, poverty and gang culture? Were they written as a counterpoint to your grittier verses?
I've always been interested in Nature, the changing seasons, the beauty that can be found. I don't want my books to just reflect the darker sides of society; I want to mix that in by saying that there is calmness in Nature. It lightens the book and shows that life isn't always about the problems in society.

With the current state of the world there is a need for escape of one kind or another, no matter how brief. Do your poems based on nature help serve this purpose?
Nature poems are nice to write, there's a feeling of lightness when writing them especially if you are outside and picking up on the smells, noises etc. Some of the poems in this book have touched on despair, so to write a poem or a selection based on Nature is a good way for me to get back to basics, touch Nature and see the beauty there. There's the dark in poetry but also the light.

When writing poems that reflect society in a dark manner, how much can your writing impact you to the point where you have to create a balance?
Poems that reflect on issues like homelessness or deaths aren't always pleasant to write about, though when I highlighted these poems via Facebook before I put them in the book the response was good. I distance myself after the poem is written, and tend to write poems of a lighter tone to break up the subject matter expressed in the emotional poems.

Have your reality based poems or your nature based poems gotten more favorable responses since you started previewing A Weapon Called The Word on Facebook? Or does it depend on each poem?
I think it depends on the poem but when a book is imminent I get more responses with the nature themed work. People still seem to prefer society based poems as they can hopefully relate to them but it depends on people’s preferences.

Name some new poems you are previewing on Facebook and explain why you chose them?
Poems previewed there's been quite a few 'A Strange Little Town' was one I felt people of my hometown would relate to and luckily it was well received. Others were, 'Death Of A Homeless Man', 'Silent Snow' 'Small Town Solidarity' and one called 'Gentleman Ged' about a man I knew briefly for about a year who sadly passed away. I wrote and sent the poem to his family, and they asked if it could be read out at his funeral service which it was. I'm currently setting up an author page on Facebook to help promote this book and others. And I'm planning on doing competitions, giveaways etc. It all helps promotion. It's good for people to leave reviews and it will have a direct link to Amazon.

What sort of competitions and giveaways are you planning to host? Will you be conducting it through Facebook?
I have a few things planned. Some are a surprise and will be totally different but I'll also do the like, comment share kind of thing and pick a name out at random. So most of it will be via Facebook.

Are you considering other social media platforms besides Facebook to promote the release of A Weapon Called The Word?
I'm planning on articles/advertising via the local press who have published my poems in their paper. I'm also hoping to branch out and get the book in several shops in my town so it's easily accessible if people want a copy. Even though it will be available via Amazon I find not many people tend to purchase it from this outlet. I'm hoping this might change with this book. I'd like to see it chart for poetry best-sellers that would be nice.

Are you still seeking major publishing companies to distribute your books, or are you still self-published and satisfied with independent companies?
If a company approached me I'd be interested as it would reach a bigger audience. I still enjoy the D.I.Y ethic with self-publishing; the freedom, no deadlines and doing my own promotion, covers etc. It's still fun for me writing and publishing new books so why it continues being so, I'll continue regardless.

Would you be interested in writing about underground scenes in other countries as your career progresses? What besides nature would you also consider basing poems on?
Everything's possible and writable when proper research is done. I wouldn't mind one day writing childrens’ poems and putting them in a book. That would be fun.

-Dave Wolff

Tuesday, May 15, 2018

Single Review: CROONA Killing Me Again (Independent) by Dave Wolff

Killing Me Again
Place of origin: Gothenburg, Sweden
Genre: Experimental/harsh electro/industrial
Release date: March 19, 2018
Frederick Croona started this project three years ago as an experiment in mixing industrial, trance, electro and what is called futurepop. It mustn’t have been long before he discovered endless territories to move into, since his experimenting progressed to three full lengths and new material on the way. This includes a single released in March, marking his evolution as a musician, songwriter and composer. Croona has made occasional changes to his approach, but makes a point of staying away from labels such as aggropop while keeping a bellicose, rapacious edge. Most of the harshness exists in the vocals, percussion and keyboard effects driving the three versions of Killing Me Again appearing on this single. It’s a few steps ahead of 80s proto-techno, and a few steps away from Marilyn Manson and Rob Zombie. Images coming to my mind with the remixes include long forgotten computer machinery described in John W. Campbell’s 1934 science fiction tale Twilight. Twilight is a particularly tragic tale, as computer technology completely wipes out all human ambition in the distant future. It seems to fit the sense of overwhelmed suffocation of the lyrics. Other images will come to the minds of listeners, as some may prefer particular remixes over others. There is much room to choose the way each track is reinterpreted. My own favorite remix is the first, not just for its catchiness and commercial potential but for the most diverse instruments and sounds. The song becomes a mural of infinite textures, with sufficient guitars for techno-metal fans. The second emphasizes clean electronics, and the third sounds composed under more somber a mood with organic percussion, harsher synths and more distortion. I would have to say this remix is my second favorite of the three. You can hear this release and the three full lengths at Croona’s profile at Bandcamp. -Dave Wolff

Band lineup:
Frederick Croona: All instruments

Track list:
1. Killing Me Again
2. Killing Me Again (Aliennation Remix)
3. Killing Me Again (Kounter Mezhure Remix)

Thursday, May 10, 2018

Full Length Review: SKINLESS Savagery (Relapse Records) by Dave Wolff

Place of origin: Glens Falls, New York, USA
Genre: Brutal death metal
Recorded by Tom Case, Doomsday Bunker Studio, New York, USA and Dave Otero, Flatline Audio, Colorado, USA
Cover art by Jesse Levitt
Available on LP, CD and digital format
Release date: May 11, 2018
For a band that traveled a long journey from the first wave of New York death metal to worldwide renown, having started out by independently releasing demos and appearing on splits release by obscure indie labels, Skinless achieved it through a long line of demos, EPs, videos, splits and full lengths and live appearances with Morbid Angel, Mortician, Suffocation, Dying Fetus, Six Feet Under, Deicide, Immolation, Entombed, Vader, Cattle Decapitation and Grave not to mention the likes of Slayer, Pantera, Exodus and Overkill. Their last full length Only The Ruthless Remain garnered high praise from Terrorizer, Decibel and Metal Sucks who were already praising Savagery before it was even released. They write, “[Savagery] seems designed to cave the listener’s skull in with all the dignified grace of being beaten to death with a hammer.” To me it must be a sledgehammer or even a jackhammer since it feels so as I listen. Keeping at it since 1992 with backbreaking work, unceasing devotion to all things brutal and extensive performing, the band prove as many others have that death metal will always be strong while having something to offer you still can’t find anywhere aboveground. Some similarities to Carcass (Reek Of Putrefaction, Symphones Of Sickness) can be found here with some atmospheric guitars, shades of goregrind, menacing songwriting, precise musicianship and production that is dark, thick and sufficiently balanced to project the technical blast, crunch, bludgeoning drums and guttural vocals directly into your brain. The slam and groove Skinless bring to the table is written so well into the material it sounds natural with the time changes and melodies written in. Holding tight to their old school theme, Skinless are capable of holding their own alongside the newer DM bands of the 2010s by experience alone. From what I read of the lyrics I ascertain their message also reflects early death metal, pointing out how blind obedience leads to mass dumbing down, to premature expiration and ultimately everlasting condemnation of the soul. Relapse Records has been releasing albums by Skinless since 2001; Foreshadowing Our Demise, From Sacrifice To Survival and Trample The Weak, Hurdle The Dead; and I would advise you to check those out as well as Savagery. -Dave Wolff

Band lineup:
Sherwood Webber: vocals
Noah Carpenter: guitars
Dave Matthews: guitars
Joe Keyser: bass
Bob Beaulac: drums

Track list:
1. Savagery
2. Siege Engine
3. Skull Session
4. Reversal Of Fortune
5. Exacting Revenge
6. Medieval
7. Line Of Dissent
8. Cruel Blade Of The Guillotine
9. The Hordes
10. High Rate Extinction (Bonus Track)

Wednesday, May 9, 2018

Poem: 'Swiftness' by Alison Stone

by Alison Stone

If you can’t be wise,
be fast. No cheetah stews
in indecision. Even mouse and newt
know when to feint,
then skedaddle toward some fine
elsewhere. Stay nimble. Sift
through your habits before they stif-
fen. Unclench your fists.
What you can’t change, witness.
Be the sun on its bright race west –
unstoppable, burning with news.

Poem: 'Just You and Me' by Andy Horry

Just You and Me
by Andy Horry

Let go of fear,
Now come over here,
There’s nothing to fear.
There’s nothing that can hurt you
Or take you out of here.
Don’t fret about what happens next
Or what’s that over there.
The body isn’t you,
The consciousness is you.
You are what is,
what was
And what will always be.
Consciousness is indestructible,
It will never leave.
Just take a step back
And be aware that you can breathe.
Embrace the breeze,
Feel the trees,
Getting weak at the knees
Just take a step back and breathe.
You will soon come to see,
There is no duality
And everything we see
Comes from the same thing
Don’t you see?
Just take a step back
And realise that those lies
you’ve been told
Have no substance at all.
Falling down the waterfall,
Just you and me.
Flying through the skies,
Just you and me.
In harmony with the world,
Just you and me.
Don’t get caught up in the lies
That they’re spreading.
It’s irrelevant
What Race,
What Creed,
Or Species,
Man it’s just obscene.
There is no duality,
Just you and me,
Just you and me.

Poem: 'Sound Of Violence' by Coralie Rowe

Sound Of Violence
(The Sound Of Silence)
by Coralie Rowe

Hello Satan, my old friend
You've come to play with me again
'Cos an incision slowly weeping
Led your soul to come a creeping
And the incision that slanted in my brain
Still remains
Breathing the sound of violence

Defenceless screams, I stalked alone
Burrowed treats from rubble stone
'Neath the hallow of soil damp
I found the squalor of the old and cramped
With despise I jabbed, dug and thrashed through an eon night
Submit to spite
And found the sound of violence

And in the tainted light so raw
Ten thousand demons, maybe more
Demons stalking whilst out reaping
Demons stealing whilst out thieving
Demons citing wrongs in voices that shred the air
And not one cared
To curb the sounds of violence

Cruel red eyes and horns that glow
Violence like a river flows
Fear the world that I did make new
Staked my soul that I might preach you
Now my hordes, of violent servants swell
They wallow in a hell of violence

And as demons killed and slayed
More fresh blood and gore was sprayed
As these swine slashed without mourning
A newfound hell was now dawning
The decayed dead, now hung from the soffits
Are bleeding down the scarlet walls
And sentiment calls
Are whimpered to the sounds of violence

Poem: 'Christmas Returns' by Craig Michael

Christmas Returns
by Craig Michael

Twas the night before Christmas, when all through the house,
Not a stick of furniture was left, because of bedbugs and louse.
BUT on the roof was a giant clatter, something was announced,
It was my landlord screaming, your bank check just bounced.
Get out!
I tried to have peace and joy like everyone else.
Soon no heat and my electricity went out.
A dollar menu, soda and fries,
The kids tried to look happy,
As Santa put on another disguise.
Oh no no no, you fuckin ho,
you spent all your money on the games you choose,
So save all you receipts, the boxes and wrappings,
... it pays.
Because the kids will get bore with them all,
And you get a full refund,
if everything is returned in 60 days.
So who needs to keep the stuff and live in debt,
It's all materialism,
Take it all back with no regret.
Ho ho ho no,
Fuck The World and live like a pro.
On Christmas Returns

Poem: 'Where are we' by Debbie Dixon

Where are we
by Debbie Dixon -2013©

Where is your head
Is it high in the clouds
Or is it clouded
By dogma
That screams really loud

Where does your heart
When you think of me
When the time comes
Tell me
Where will
It be

Where is your soul
Is it trapped in that shell
Slowly rotting
While all around you
They tell you
You are well

Where is your courage
To stand up
And shout
I will not be silenced
And I’m out

The mirror
So look in my eyes

I Am
The honesty
That suffers no lies

Poem: 'What I Miss The Most' by Elena Karis

What I Miss The Most
by Elena Karis

Sunshine and breezes
Stormy days and coffee
Hugs and kisses
Below zero and sneezes
Bright eyes and smiles
Posting and comments
Cooking and Baking
Walking for miles
Boots and dancing
Swimming and pruned hands
Wrapping and bows
Deer prancing
These are a few of the things I miss most.