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Vacant State

One of my photographs of the fabled sound mirrors at Denge has been used as the cover image for Eden Grey's new recording, an atmospheric, modular synth-derived soundscape. Taken on a close, ominous July day in 2014, the photo fits the sonic atmospheres well. Listen here.

Recent posts

A Tale of Two Future Glasgows

Despite its undoubted cultural vitality, Glasgow has often had a grim reputation, especially south of the English border. Yet the very bleakness, exacerbated by epic mismanagement, aggressive deindustrialization and sectarianism has also made it a site of constant and sometimes tragically over-ambitious attempts at utopian regeneration. This can be seen in the now highly poignant film Glasgow 1980, which was already being quietly forgotten and surpassed by harsh reality even before the city had reached the year the film is supposed to depict. It poignantly promised a gleaming, post-industrial future in which "muscle gives way to automation."


Yet in between the completion of the film and 1980, the oil shock and economic slowdown shattered the dreams of its makers and backers. Relatively little of the utopian plans (which to some already seemed dystopian) was ever built and many of the hopes of the "white heat of technology" era came to nothing. Other buildings that …

People's March Against Neofeudalism

Last Saturday I join a pan-European group of friends and c. 700, 000 others on the People's March. As I explained to a Japanese journalist, we were there as we felt we had no choice. I have the sense that many in the country feel that if they just keep their heads down and give the Brexit People what they want, then they'll be satisfied. This is a huge mistake. The elite mob of disaster capitalists, neofeudalists and kleptocrats may not be unstoppable, but they are absolutely insatiable. Ultimately, nothing will satisfy their lust for blood and power, so it is better to make a stand now while it's still possible than to have to wrest back control from them amidst the Hard Brexit chaos they dream of.
I've been on 2 previous marches on this subject, but this was a huge increase in numbers and energy. Apart from a tiny pro-Trump mob outside Brexerspoons on Whitehall, there was no opposition. The weigh and spirit of so many people were impossible to resist. Even Radio 4 sp…

Gesamtkunstwerk Laibach at Iklectik Arts Lab, London. 3. Oktober 2018

Join us for the London launch of the English/German book Gesamtkunstwerk Laibach, a collection of new perspectives on the work of the group. Co-editor Uwe Schütte will present the book and this will be followed by a panel discussing their own selections of Laibach videos:


Alexei Monroe will analyse Mi kujemo bodočnost 1983Simon Bell will analyse Opus Dei (Life is Life)Michael Goddard will analyse Wirtschaft ist TotUwe Schütte will analyse Germania
Codex Europa will play a selection of rare and lesser-known Laibach pieces, alongside a few classics.

Tickets are available on the door or from the venue website.

Quatermass: Brexit & A Warning from TV History (or 'How they learned to hate science and love the Brex')

Quatermass is a story of the future ... but perhaps only a few years from now. What might be in store for us if our civilisation were to come under terrible unforeseen strain.
Nigel Kneale, 1979.

I saw the final Quatermass TV series as an impressionable 10 year old. Like many of my generation, it's stayed with me ever since. The earlier Quatermass films and TV series are more respected critically and writer Nigel Kneale himself had reservations about the way the 1979 instalment was realised. Yet however imperfect it is, it does have great poetic dystopian power.


At the time, the urban warfare and mad cults it depicts were (correctly) taken as Kneale's somewhat bitter look back in anger at the social and political chaos of the 1960s and 1970s. It's forgotten that Kneale was looking forwards as much as backwards. In a feature for the TV Times to promote the series, he argued that the near total collapse of civilisation that he foresaw might be just a few years away.

Until …

Brutalism 2k18 What the F**k is Going On?

Last week I spoke at the Nonument Symposium in Ljubljana, focussing on the way that 'Brutalism' is used and abused in contemporary culture. The renewed cult popularity of Brutalism is a phenomenon I've been observing with a mixture of fascination, enjoyment, ambivalence and disgust for some time and the lecture had a packed agenda. It was an attempt to try and decode the various agendas and interests circling around Brutalism and to track them. I analysed a range of examples, from internet culture to contemporary design to industrial music to science-fiction.  Brutalism as a (life)style or even an attitude is arguably more 'sexy' and, for some, virtuous than ever, yet many of its most iconic structures are now being demolished or de-brutalised through cladding - a term now synonymous with the horror of the Grenfell Tower fire.

All this raises many questions. Is there any stable, agreed perception of what Brutalism means and has it been systematically appropriated …

Autopsia: Thanatopolis at the Horse Hospital, 18th - 25th November 2016

18th November saw the opening of the first ever British exhibition by Autopsia. It also marked the publication of my 2nd book, Autopsia: Thanatopolis, the first extended study on the work of the group.


I devised the Thanatopolis (city of death) concept while working on the book. It seemed highly appropriate, given Autopsia's artistic focus on death and the destructive, if not fatal, social and economic forces that roam freely in Neofeudal London.

The conclusion of the book speculates on the technologically-driven future of art and culture in a Thanatotic city and culture.


Autopsia had its roots in the Punk and industrial scenes of late 1970s London and so it was natural (and long overdue) the project should symbolically return to the city that helped inspire it.



The exhibition featured several new works and worked well in the cold, gloomy interior of the Horse Hospital.


Early 1980s works were featured ...

Alongside Autopsia's latest sardonic merchandising venture: surplus Czec…