Zero Squared #19: Listening to Writing and Letters

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Daniela Cascella is the guest this week and we discuss her book F.M.R.L. The book is described as “a collection of fragments and essays recording accidents of hearing and detours of thought in response to the peripheral nature of listening and reading.”

Kristen Kreider, author of Poetics and Place, blurbed the book as follows:

“This is writing in its most present sense. Writing that, true to its tense, enacts a continual process of thinking and perceiving. Writing that, spinning its words from sound, gathers up referents in a loose weave. Expansive in scope, and intimate in scale, this is writing where reading dwells in the reverie of detail — and deserves our full attention. ”

It’s Wednesday, May 13th 2015 and I’m Douglas Lain the publisher of Zero Books and the host of this podcast.

In this episode you’ll hear Victoria Hanna discussing the Hebrew alphabet, Bobby McFerrin singing his ABCs, John David Ebert discussing Derrida and Plato’s Phaedrus, Nigel Tufnel playing Lick My Love Pump, Michael Tilson Thomas discussing music and emotion, Grover and Guy Smiley playing Name that Sound, Eric Satie’s Vexations, Gertrude Stein, the Youtube star Sonicstate unboxing a Moog Minitaur, Lester Bangs discussing the state of rock and roll in the 70s, Professor Wright of Yale introducing music appreciation, a mash up called Metal Machine Music for Airports and Sabine Schafer’s “Sound Warp” Installation.

Zero Squared #18: The Temptation of Nothing

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Daniel Coffeen is the guest this week and we discuss a blog post he wrote that ended up on Thought Catalog that was entitled The Temptation of Nothing. Coffeen has a PhD in Rhetoric from UC Berkeley where taught adjunct for many years and now works independently writing copy as well as writing about contemporary art, film, language, Deleuze, and the rest. He is a philsopher if by philosophy you mean the tendency to play with ideas.

In his blog post Coffeen wrote:

My shrink — who is of another order, another plane; he’s not a therapist per se — has been encouraging me to be that second man, to cut out all intoxicants for 90 days, give or take. Do nothing, he says, just be. And then you can drink and what have you but not because it sates but because you want to. For him, there should be no difference between sitting on the floor doing nothing and getting lit.

It’s Wednesday, May 6th 2015 and I’m Douglas Lain the publisher of Zero Books and the host of this podcast.

In this episode you’ll hear Hilaire Belloc’s Guide to Boring, the song Skokiaan by Louis Armstrong, some dialogue from the movie Slacker, the Professor Jon Stewart discussing Kierkegaard, Hegel, Socrates and modernity, a clip from Bill and Ted’s Excellent Adventure, an explanation of that black and blue dress, the band Focus Group performing Chordfl from their album Elektrik Karousel, and Stars of the Lid’s “Don’t Bother They’re Here.”

30 Apr 2015, 1:32am
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Zero Squared #17: The Liminalist

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Jason Horsley is the guest this week and we discuss his new podcast called The Liminalist. Jason Horsley is the author of several books including Matrix Warrior, The Blood Poets, and most recently Seen and Not Seen which came out from Zero Books in January.

Pauline Kael, the influential film critic for the New Yorker from 1968 to 1991, blurbed Horsley’s book The Blood Poets. She wrote:

This hothead fantasist offers the excitement of a wild, paranoid style. He lives in the movies, explodes them from the inside, and shares his fevered trance with us. But he doesn’t lose his analytic good sense. He’s not just a hothead, he’s a hardhead, too. . . . He’s a marvellous critic. Tackling a new movie, he’ll hang in there until he’s balanced and sound. It’s always a surprise.

Horsley was, for a short while, my co-host on Zero Squared and I was pleased to speak to him again.

In this episode you’ll hear Bob Odenkirk imitating Charles Manson, the linguist John McWhorter discussing the strange history of the plural form in English, a couple of notes from the theme for the television show New Girl, the youtube star Ralph Skip Stevens describing Structuralism, the youtube star AlanKey86 with Auditory Illusion #3, and the audio track from promotional video from Utah.com called Four Corners: Utah, Colorado, Arizona and New Mexico, and Pierre Schaeffer’s Apostrophe.

Zero Squared #16: Drink the Rest of That

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Guy J Jackson is the guest this week and we discuss his collection of short stories Drink the Rest of That which came out from Roundfire Books in January. Roundfire Books is an imprint at John Hunt Publishing as is Zero Books. Drink the Rest of That is a collection of shorts meant to be read “at a rate of one per day in order to feel Zen for however many days that there are stories, or so claimed Roundfire Book’s late editorial assistant, Nils Samuels Chastain, even thought it wasn’t his place to decide that.”

Nathan Penlington is the author of “Roadkill on the Digitial Highway” and a drinking buddy with Guy. He blurbed the collection as follows:

Imagine if a Kurt Vonnegut/Richard Brautigan hybrid had written The Phantom Tollbooth and you are somewhat close to the uniqueness of this book. Drink The Rest of That is a dazzling, heartbreaking, laugh-a-loud collection that will leave you wanting more.

I’m having a difficult time imagining such a creature myself. It sounds like something out of a Cronenberg movie.

It’s Wednesday, April 22nd 2015 and I’m Douglas Lain the publisher of Zero Books and the host of this podcast.

In this episode you’ll hear a Christopher Knowles poem as recited by Robert Wilson, a Philip Glass style improvization by the youtube star Torley, train sounds and an excerpt from Paul Simon’s song Ordinary Child from his Rhythm of the Saints which was the album I listened to on my Realistic brand Walkman when I first travelled by train from Colorado Springs to Portland Oregon back in 1991. The music you’re listening to right now is the Soweto String Quartet’s tribute to Paul Simon’s Graceland, but in just a moment you’ll be listening to Guy Jackson and I discuss why you should drink that.