Thursday, 3 March 2011

Piss Poor Poet Found in the Dustbin of History

Guest Post by James Cavanagh

Of all the crimes, political and aesthetic, committed by neo-folk musician Tony Wakeford, surely the 1984 EP 'Songs of the Wolf' by his group Above the Ruins, released first as a cassette and later on vinyl and CD, has to be the most unforgivable. The utter dreariness of the music and the banality of the lyrical content are impossible to convey in words. Perhaps Wakeford intended to lead a great Fascist victory by simultaneously boring and depressing his opponents to death. Probably in June.

Recently some new research has turned up an unacknowledged collaborator on that Above the Ruins EP.

At the time of the recording of 'Songs of the Wolf' Wakeford was a paid-up member of the National Front and fronting Richard Lawson's Iona (Islands of North Atlantic) group. He was also following the same Fascist Gramscian cultural strategy that many suspect he still operates to this day. In his introduction to the Iona-published volume of poetry 1957: Before the Storm, by Paul Comben, (also published in '84), Wakeford opens with the following sentence: "The volume you are now holding in your hands is the first book to be published by 'Iona', an independent, non-political organisation dedicated to the preservation of our Norse and Celtic heritage." The term 'non-political' seems a little disingenuous, given that Iona is unequivocally described as a Nazi organisation by Searchlight magazine and others.

Wakeford's close friend Richard Lawson has a long history in British Fascism. He was a student organiser for the National Front in the late seventies, and part of the Strasserite faction that split with the NF and went on to found the National Party. He would go on to found the Transeuropa collective, attacked by Searchlight for anti-Semitism and for its entryist tactics in infiltrating the Green movement. In 1995 Lawson launched Fluxeuropa, and collaborated with Fascist activist and musician Troy Southgate on Alternative Green magazine. In 1997 Transeuropa launched Radical Shift magazine, whose raison d'etre according to Searchlight was to "delegitimise anti-racism, anti-fascism and liberal democracy in favour of... ethnic separation, bigoted regionalism and chauvinistic nationalism". Lawson was best man at Wakeford's wedding in 1998.

Wakeford closes his short introduction to 1957, Before the Storm with this sentence: "Above all else however, Paul (Comben) tells me that he wants people to think about what he has to say in the latter poems, whether they eventually agree with him or not." The poems he refers to are broadly speaking nationalist in nature, often concerned with class, as opposed to the earlier poems which are ostensibly about love and war. Again the awfulness of the poetry cannot be over-emphasised. Michael Croshaw reviewing Before the Storm in Scorpion at the time complains about Comben's "shoddy attempt at exact rhyme... " and suggests Comben might have "found a niche as a lyricist for Victorian ballads". He has a point. Take, for example, the young-fogeyish reactionary moaning about sixties culture in 'War':

And bang on time it did all that as once it did to Rome
I saw the whiskery young men go naked in the square
So I locked my mind at '55 and did my living there.

The clumsy versification goes on interminably throughout the book. I won't bore you with any more than is necessary. In one poem, a jaunty little nursery rhyme entitled "Progress", Comben berates some unnamed Socialist state for creating a homogeneous, servile society in thrall to a dehumanising government, closing with this sparkling stanza:

It's best to be humble
And do as you're told
To think as you're taught
And die when you're old
For such is the meaning
Of Marx and his word -
Wine for the Reds
And chains for the Herd.

For anyone who has had the misfortune to listen to Songs of the Wolf these words will be familiar. On closer examination of the poems in 1957, Before the Storm and the lyrics of Songs of the Wolf it becomes apparent that Wakeford has 'borrowed' from Comben's poems for some of his song lyrics. Comben has found his own 'Victorian balladeer' in the bulky form of Tony Wakeford. For example the song 'Roses' borrows from two of Comben's poems, 'Roses' and 'Crosses', with some other lyrics interspersed between them. But it is Wakeford's appropriation of the words in the afore-mentioned 'Progress' that really reveals Wakeford's state of mind at the time. Examine the way Wakeford amends Comben's words in the third verse for his own purposes:

Paul Comben

Mechanized, Centralized
Kept to your place
All the same manner
And all the same face
Freedom is freedom
From dissident views
Eyes full of nothing
But authorized news.

Above the Ruins

Mongrelized, centralized
Kept to your place
All the same colour
And all the same race
Freedom is freedom
From dissident views
Eyes full of terror
And authorized news.

The racist tone of Wakeford's amended lyric is clear, particularly in the substitution of 'mongrelized' in place of 'mechanized'. Obviously Comben's nationalist politics, objectionable as they are, were not explicit enough for Wakeford's purposes here. Nonetheless, it is interesting to examine where the long-out-of-print volume is to be found nowadays, and where it was originally distributed from, so as to recognise its perceived political position. An online search turns up Comben's book on a couple of sites, described as 'nationalist poetry'; one being a seller on ebay called 'Patriot 77', specialising in far-right literature, and the other the Final Conflict site, which bares the strap line "Brought to you by the people who brought you Nationalism Today". Nationalism Today was founded in 1980 by Nick Griffin and Joe Pearce, editor of National Front youth paper Bulldog. A small sticker on the back of Before the Storm reads "Burning Books, 50 Pawson Road, Croydon, Surrey". Burning Books was the publishing outlet of the National Front at the time.

Of Paul Comben and his identity little can be found. He seems to have disappeared after publishing another volume of nationalist poetry titled Occupation, published by Capstone in 1987. The publishers also have vanished. Occupation, like Before the Storm, crops up for sale on far-right websites occasionally.

In 1985 Wakeford was to contribute a track from the Songs of the Wolf to National Front benefit album No Surrender, Volume 1, alongside tracks by other overtly Nazi bands like Skrewdriver and Brutal Attack. Members of Above the Ruins included Liz Grey (Sol Invictus), Ian Read (Current 93, Death in June, Sol Invictus, Fire and Ice) and Neo-Nazi Gary Smith (No Remorse, Sol Invictus). (No Remorse were infamous for releasing Barbeque in Rostock, a eulogy for petrol bomb attacks on immigrant housing in Rostock and the subsequent deaths, which opened with this verse: "Didn't want their town filled with scum, So they got together and made petrol bombs. Then one cold, starry night, They set them filthy Turks alight!") The ATR song on the original cassette release that was donated to the NF benefit album was dropped from subsequent vinyl and CD releases in feeble attempt to bury history. The original cassette release of Songs of the Wolf turns out be published from a British Monomarks box number belonging to Michael Walker, New Rightist editor of The Scorpion and flat-mate to Roberto Fiore, convicted Italian Fascist terrorist (and now leader of the Italian neo-Nazi party, Forza Nuova).

The outpouring of disgust provoked by the release of Songs of the Wolf plagued Wakeford for over two decades and eventually he felt forced to make a statement expressing regret that he had ever been in the National Front. He obliquely suggests that his involvement with Fascism was a brief youthful folly. No mention of Songs of the Wolf, Above the Ruins, or the contribution to the No Surrender Volume 1 is made, and the reasons for his regret are not given.

"For the few who are interested in such things, Many years ago I was once a member of the National Front. It was probably the worse (sic) decision of my life and one I very much regret. However, I have no connection with, sympathy for, or interest in those ideas nor have I had for around 20 years."

This statement was made in February 2007. And note that he was still selling Songs of the Wolf from his Tursa website in February 2007, listed under 'Clearances' rather than the band name. In my opinion this makes his dictum untrustworthy in the extreme, especially in tandem with the rest of his subsequent activities. As far as Wakeford is concerned it is the last he will say on the matter. Despite having 'regretted' his past long-term involvement with Fascism, Wakeford is apparently happy to appear with Sol Invictus on a compilation called With Friends Like These, released in 2010 on his own label Tursa in collaboration with another label, Kaparte. The compilation features music from, amongst others, While Angels Watch, Richard Moult, and Rose Rovine e Amanti, all who have been involved with Fascism themselves, either directly or through collaboration with overtly Fascist bands. Angels Watch have worked with British Fascist activist Troy Southgate, and Ian Read from Above the Ruins is a band member. Rose Rovine e Amanti have worked with Von Thronstahl, an overtly Nazi band. Moult (aka Christos Beest) was a Hitlerist and member of both the Order of the Nine Angles - a Fascist Satanist organisation, and Reichsfolk, a Nazi organisation. Both were founded and fronted by arch-Nazi Satanist David Myatt. With friends like these indeed...

To bring things even more up to date, Wakeford's post-ATR band Sol Invictus are booked to appear at the Slimlight (a venue well-known for putting on neo-Nazi and Fascist bands) on 25th June 2011. They will perform alongside While Angels Watch, Sixth Comm, Joy of Life and Freya Aswynn. Patrick Leagas (aka O-Kill) from 6 Comm was a founder-member of Death in June. Gary Carey from Joy of Life, with its swaztika-style logo, has worked with While Angels Watch and Death in June. Dutch occultist Freya Aswynn is a long-term collaborator with Leagas, and released the single 'Wolf Rune' with the far-right French band Les Joyaux De La Princesse, who are described by Christoph Frangeli of Datacide as celebrating "an increasingly crystallized, extreme right-wing ideology”. She was also involved with a racist campaign against Black opera singer Willard White, organised by Scorpion in 1989.

Much of what has been stated here has long been in the public domain, dispersed over websites, promotional material, in books and the press. But the discovery that this dismal petit-bourgoise Fascist poet Paul Comben contributed lyrics to Wakeford's most politically heinous work, totally uncredited, reignited the feeling that Wakeford has built his career on Fascist politics and dishonesty. A quick glance at his current activities, in light of his hand-washing statement four years ago, only reinforces my conviction that he is a liar, and that his motivations have remained the same, even if he has dropped the outright Nazi propaganda of Songs of the Wolf in favour of the Evolaian aesthetic Fascism so loved by his fans. After all he has records to sell, gigs to play and books to balance.

48 comments:

  1. Seems like a Paul Comben wrote an article entitled "Tolkien: Ring Bearer for Racial Nationalism" for the NF mag New Nation #6 in 1984.

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  2. one two three3 Mar 2011 19:53:00

    No mention of official NF leader Patrick Harrington's involvement with Above The Ruins here. There seems to be some confusion about his role, but my impression is he helped promote them - and may have handled them in a managerial capacity.

    James Cavanagh has done a sterling job of digging deeply into the foulest recesses of the dustbin of history. I'm sure we'll see much more Wakeford would prefer to keep secret revealed here soon!

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  3. Who are the nazi bands that played at Slimelight?

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  4. Death In June, Ian Read and many others played at the Slimelight over the years.

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  5. Here's some real fascists for you all to follow up, not the vaudeville version --

    Hate comes to Orange County

    a video of a rally organised by anti-Muslim bigots to protest a February fund raising event held by an American Muslim relief group for relief work and charity in the U.S.....the rally, which was sponsored by groups such as: "We Surround Them OC 912" (a local Tea Party group), Rabbi David Eliezrie of Chabad - Yorba Linda, North Orange County Conservative Coalition, ACT! for America, and Pamela Geller....

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=NutFkykjmbM&feature=player_embedded#at=45

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  6. I've never dealt with Wakeford myself but I've heard a few things over the years, one of which I'll share here. Andrew King was going to cover the David E. Williams song "Wotan rains on a Plutocrat parade" for the appeal of discarded orthodoxy comp, but Tony Wakeford told him that if he covered the song that he would be kicked out of Sol Invictus.

    So King did the song under the name Second Amendment because he needed the money from contributing to Sol Invictus, but seemingly King in turn went out of his way to make a extra over the top version of the song-
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=qB71eqOC1u8

    Here is the original version-
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=YKis3TzPHBQ

    This was all gossip I heard from myself being involved with the comp.

    So it does seems that Wakeford is apprehensive about being linked to anything overtly racist, which seems to completely back fire on him. Having done the most back peddling of all the Neo-Folkers he also catches the most shit. You guys fixate on him more then people who are very openly racist and/or fascist. I know from personal experience that some people have decided to be more blatant with their views because it seems the openly racialist projects catch less shit then those who play these games like Wakeford.

    Also Wakefords tactics may be less of a deliberate political strategy and more of a personal adaptation to due personal pressures. What I mean by that is that I'm sure his involvement with racialism has cost him friends or strained relationships with them. I can imagine he's caught between not wanting to abandoned what he feels is to some extent right and true but also not wanting to loose people he cares about. He doesn't strike me as that cunning to have some crazy agenda of social manipulation.

    -Oneiric Imperium

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  7. "Having done the most back peddling of all the Neo-Folkers he also catches the most shit"

    Indeed! Which adds further weight to the old saying never explain, never apologise.

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  8. Oneiric Imperium, can you explain your Youtube comment "One can only fully understand this song if you ever spend time in Philadelphia. Or perhaps DC & Detroit".

    Can you also explain precisely what it is about living in these locations that prompted you to leave the comment on Andrew King's (explicitly racialist) version, rather than the original?

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  9. It'd be interesting to know what Andrew King's friends at the lovely Musical Traditions club would think of that "Second Amendment" track...
    It should indeed be more widely distributed.

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  10. To this end, I once spoke to a regular member of that popular London folk club, feeling that she should at least be aware of King's worldview, associations and 'politics'. She, being of the opinion that traditional music was inherently egalitarian and 'of the people', was aghast, but I've no way of knowing whether the issue was raised in a wider sense. There's no mention of King's involvement on the current MT webpage, however....

    Presumably Wakeford is aware of Second Amendment's identity – King's voice is immediately identifiable, after all. As had been suggested elsewhere, perhaps a good strategy to prevent Wakeford from 'catching shit' would be to stop consorting with Social Darwinists and fascists.....

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  11. I have to break this post in two parts-

    Well first off I know David E. Williams. The original intent of the song was along the lines of ballad of a guy hitting the breaking point in manner parallel to the movie falling down. Though despite that I know there is also a certain bit of sympathy for the character in the song, even if the original intent of the song was of David's gallows humor then anything. William's views tend more along libertarianism & Paleo-Con lines rather racialism and the far right.

    Philadelphia is ground zero for the death of the west. Its one of the places America started first and also failed first. Having grown up as a poor white person in Philadelphia has left me very fixated on issues of race and class as the two are very mixed together and the city itself throws the ugliness of both at you in a way with no absolute and clear cut answers.

    I spent ages 16-21 living in squats in philly. This was mainly in poor black neighborhoods. At the time I was coming from a left leaning punk/rust background but my interest in Laveyan Satanism was drifting me away from that area of thought.

    I was a white kid living in abandoned building in a poor black neighborhood, who lacked a formal education, survived off of trash and was also raised poor, and yet some how I still had my shit together more then the majority of the blacks in the neighborhood. At the time I was very sympathetic to their plight and sought some common ground through class solidarity.

    Yet I found very few blacks who gave a shit and few blacks that could get passed issues of race. Racial differences were more of an issue to them then any commonality found in mutual experiences of being poor. Not that this was always the case, but it was from my personal experience the majority of the time.

    It took me a very long time to accept it, because I back then and sill now, do not want to be a reactionary bigot, but I genuinely do not think that the inherent nature of various races are the same. Some are similar enough to get along and some others are not. In the case of blacks and whites I think it is best for both ends to be apart, but I do not wish for anything to be imposed on anyone. It can't be a compulsory decision but rather a personal choice.

    Now I accept that blacks in America are in position to be set up for failure as a criminal scapegoat underclass and that the majority of people in any group kept in those conditions are going to succumb to them.

    Philadelphia is a majority black city and there are places in philly that if you are white you are putting your life in risk. White people in Philadelphia are often the victims of racial violence. Being a big liberal democrat town there are large very entrenched social service bureaucratic bodies run predominately by blacks who commonly thwart the efforts of whites to use them.

    While it may no be so common in Europe, Philly is a place where the black majority victimizes and exploits the poor white population. I don't like to get to wrapped up into arguments as to weather or not these things happen because of class conditions or because of biological predisposition. Its a chicken or the egg argument in the long run. The real issue for me is white victims.

    -Oneiric Imperium

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  12. Second part-

    So given that I know philly inspired the song in the first place and that philly in its ugliness inspires such feelings at time, the comment makes sense. David's version is half silly half serious. Kings version is all serious, and I can't say I never felt similar feelings in moments and frustration.

    DC and Detroit are places in
    America that are a lot like Philadelphia-
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=sRu52kgAi0s

    This video was filmed in the middle of down town. Sadly these guys Homophobic antics are tolerated and they are right around the corner from the local gay strip. No one ever confronts their racism and homophobia because black extremity gets a free pass.

    -Oneiric Imperium

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  13. Not only is King's voice identifiable - he lists "Wotan Rains..." it in his discography -http://www.daisrecords.com/bio/dais_ak.pdf

    It's a vile song- "You call that thing a baby? Well, if I may be so bold, I’d say one day you simply shit out of the wrong hole. And this need to cut your throat is more duty than mere fun. For only the smell of blood will smother the smell of subhuman dung. And I’ll confess at the foot of the flame. My confession at the foot of the flame will fan it. One less one of you, one less one of you on the planet. And when ZOG and all its monkey men come a-gunnin’ for me, I will build myself a fortress of my Hitler biographies. And I’ll be there with my Schmeisser when the savages come. I can hear them in the street now, bangin’ the battle drum. But I’ll pick ‘em off one by one, though personal survival’s not my goal. You can kill the Aryan body, but you can’t kill the Aryan soul. Don’t think of us as cattle. White Man was born for battle."

    Charming. Until I read this I just thought King was an eccentric with dodgy taste in black leather jodhpurs. I shall be giving him an extremely wide berth from now on.

    -Maurice Dancer

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  14. @Oneiric: I'm hoping that someone replies to you at length, and takes on your arguments in the detail they deserve. In the meantime, though, I have to say that I simply can't accept your description of Philly as a place where "the black majority victimizes and exploits the poor white population".

    Certainly there are racial tensions. As the city's population declines, the balance between black and white is shifting away from the whites, who are now, as you say, a minority. Politicians of all persuasions exploit those differences to their own advantage, as do, eg., estate agents and others who think they can make a profit from racist misery.

    However, while it is undeniable that whites too suffer from racist policies (I'm not talking here about black oppression of whites as you describe, but the fact that anti-black racism is also a way of keeping poor whites in their place) the general picture is one of white on black racism. I am not going to provide statistics for that, because all you have to do is Google for 'Philadelphia racism' to see reams of information bearing on this (though I'll mention this particularly harrowing story, about a mixed race couple hounded out of a white neighbourhood, and the fact that, in one year alone, 36 unarmed black men were killed by police.)

    I don't doubt for a moment that there is black on white violence, but to look at the bigger picture is to see that the roots of this are the history of slavery and its aftermath, which continues to divide America and prevent its working class uniting in their own interests. White racism is also a product of this history, and has dominated city politics from the start (I was just reading, for example, about the old police chief, Rizzo, who had his men simply dump black 'suspects' into poor white areas rather than bother charging them).

    Part of the root of white racism is that, implicitly recognising the racism meted out to blacks since the birth of the States, a minority white population obviously fears that they will face the same treatment in future, as if racism was (as you yourself seem to think) a fact of nature rather than a product of society, and especially of the history of slavery (you'd be hard pressed to find evidence of racism as such in the ancient world). Slavery in America was part of the process of rapid accumulation of wealth that got American (and British) capitalism up and running. Today, the reasons for the racist divisions between black and white are anachronistic, despite the fact that politicians everywhere play to marginal differences in order to keep things hot.

    ps. but whichever foot the boot is on, I guess we can all enjoy the irony of Philadelphia's name: from philos, "love" or "friendship", and adelphos, "brother".

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  15. This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.

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  16. Thank you to Strelnikov for a typically balanced and nuanced response, and also to Oneiric Imperium for at least having the courage to (once again) clearly state his position, in marked contrast to the evasion and duplicity of many contributors on the 'neo-folk' side.

    I asked O.I. to elucidate precisely to lay bare the prejudices which I believe underpin this movement as a whole, and, however objectionable I find his reasoning, there's no doubting the sincerity. It's just hard to escape the feeling that O.I. is as trapped within a restrictive prism of racist perception as the poor black communities which he reviles. Far right groups in the UK and Europe regularly invoke the spectre of 'black on white' violence, and the fact that this is simply never borne out by statistics is neither here nor there; the perception feeds itself.

    Strelnikov nails it for me when he states that racism (or the obsession with racial 'difference') is less an inevitable human impulse than a set of sanctioned responses to economic and social power relations. On an individual basis, even the self-styled 'victims' have a choice.

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  17. Oneric, I think you are taking those black preachers in that youtube video far too seriously -- you get complete idiots like that in every culture/creed/belief system. In UK, we have the EDL, and in Israel they have the extremist settlers ( some of them allied to the EDL funnily enough); in Saudi, they have the most extreme Wahabbis ( who despise other Muslim sects as infidel as much as other religions) and in places like Japan, they have hysterical, uptight racial conservative movements -- all of them are equally absurd and annoying. They are best just ignored.

    Why let them bother you? Unless you really have to -- you shouldn't allow that type of rhetoric to bother you.

    And speaking of the EDL, and racist Israelis, here's a very funny clip -- a real must watch ....Rabbi slips up.....

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=q_W466g0E9k

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  18. @Sacha: Wakeford doesn't need to "explain" anything away — it's nothing to do with him — nor does King. It is, as we can see, a cover version of a David E Williams song. Maybe you should ask David E Williams about it. But, as far as the cover version goes, it is plainly deliberately overblown, and grimly, blackly humorous. This point will no doubt be lost on those looking desperately for a stick — any stick — to beat Wakeford with.

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  19. I think the argument against Wakeford has been beat death, while the efforts here do seem to point that he may have in fact consciously adapted certain tactics, I doubt its anything that serious. I just think he wants to sell CDs so he doesn't have to get a regular job.

    The question really should be who buys Neo-Folk CDs and what can be done to address to this fanbase that they are supporting a racist and/or far-right culture? I'm saying from being involved in this culture that the majority of people into this stuff are racialists and/or on the far right to a variety of extents, and if they aren't they get a kick out of the naughtiness of it.

    Here in America a lot of NSBM is bought by indie rock hipsters for much the same reason. Not unlike I guess how it was once common for punk rock kids to have the one token screwdriver record hidden in the closet!
    Hanging out in NYC after a NON concert many indie kids were more interested in talking to Justin Ordnung (Genocide Lolita) and I then Boyd Rice, which seemed to annoy Boyd. People like their villains I guess, but I've grown to find that sort of thing a bit tedious.

    As for taking the Black Hebrew Isrealites seriously, well I don't. My point is that they get away with it without catching any shit from anyone and not only are they very vocally racist but are just as equally homophobic, which annoys me. I do not support homophobia. No Pagan European culture was homophobic, and even super macho Thor had to cross dress once!

    Now Strelnikov I don't disagree really with what your saying about the historical roots of racism. I just think that the best way for each group of people to deal with it is to stay apart while maintaining as much of a mutually beneficial dialog as possible and if possible.

    I agree that corporations and the government are the enemies of all people. I just don't think that a sense white identity is part of that power structure. By my ideas we all win, by typical leftists ideas everybody but white people win.

    The WASP elite of America, with all the Masonic derived cults that inform their insular culture, are Gnostic in character. Given that their views are divorced from an organic and Pagan sense of themselves which plays itself out in classist means divorced from any sense of mutuality with other whites. Baring that I can see why they side with their Zionist cohorts rather then other whites because Judaism is just as alienated from material life and consequence. They culturally have more common.

    I would rather we all go our own way and if we can't along then at least do so honestly then be united in common bondage to the same masters.

    -Oneiric Imperium

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  20. I wonder if anybody on this blog knows what real fascism/national socialism stand for in Europe.
    Despite some individuals appreciating the aestetic and sounds of some the bands mentioned here, the whole flirting with Satan, pornography and homosexuality is definitely not considered something appreciable by the "real thing".

    These project are an ignorant version of hollywood nazism, mixing drugs, perversions, social darwinism, satanism together with an idea of the world that is radically different by what fascim (old and new) stands for.

    Too many hollywood movies created monsters, and these people like to think themselves like the bad guys of Schindler's list, or of some cheesy Italian nazi exploitation movie. But fascism is action, organisation, politics and has nothing to do with the degenerated that are considered ridicolous and as weirdos in the "real movements".

    How many of these people take drugs? Just ask yourself this, this would be enough to be kicked out by the right wing "scene" in any part of Europe.
    And we are not talking about hollywood nazis that choose this sort of imagery just to scare grannies and because they don't like "niggers". I am talking about people who are really doing politics every day in their life, not just to "smash the reds" or whatever, but to build up something that give perspective to their country,ecc.

    I am not here to praise fascism, this would be definitely the wrong space considering the ideas and the meaning of the website, but I was moved by the ignorance on the subject revealed by most of the people that tries to create a neofolk fascist scare without having a clear idea of which are the main differences between the two words (considering that so called neo-folk is not a world in itself).

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  21. "The question really should be who buys Neo-Folk CDs and what can be done to address to this fanbase that they are supporting a racist and/or far-right culture? I'm saying from being involved in this culture that the majority of people into this stuff are racialists and/or on the far right to a variety of extents, and if they aren't they get a kick out of the naughtiness of it. "
    maybe where you live... here in europe is all fashion, and probably 1% ever read a political book. they prefer to dance and take drugs.
    most bands use strong imagery to then justify themselves as art. or they self convice themselves to be the real thing to then get beaten up as soon they get to know "real" fascists.

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  22. On wonders whether Richard Moult has now recanted the hard-core nazi/satanic ideology he espoused in his former incarnation as 'Christos Beest'?

    Certainly there seems to have been a musical collaboration with Current 93 in the fairly recent past (2009), which suggests either a rehabilitation, or yet more questionable judgement on the part of David Tibet and friends.

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  23. @ Berja: Sorry, but it seems that you have a rather clicheed idea of the neofolk scene and imagine this community as a mere teenage rebel sex drugs and rock'n roll thing. this may be so in some cases, but it's not the rule.

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  24. evidently you never been in a backstage of many of the big name. not all, but most, so their fans.

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  25. Oneiric Imperium said.....
    "Andrew King was going to cover the David E. Williams song "Wotan rains on a Plutocrat parade" for the appeal of discarded orthodoxy comp, but Tony Wakeford told him that if he covered the song that he would be kicked out of Sol Invictus. So King did the song under the name Second Amendment....."

    Cornelius said...
    "Wakeford doesn't need to "explain" anything away — it's nothing to do with him — nor does King."

    A simple question – why is King STILL a member of Sol Invictus, according to both Wikipedia and the band's own Myspace?

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  26. Andrew King is listed in the lineup for Sol Invictus' gig at Slimelight on 25th June this year.

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  27. Just a lurker here..but i'm trying to figure out why you guys keep listening to Oneric Imperium and responding to him as if he is some kind of neutral party. He clearly buys into all the silly racial magical thinking and views that this site is meant to expose and monitor.

    His awful music is obviously part of this scene, and I assume he's here do do some kind of "intelligence" on the other side, and to monitor or do damage control.

    To be clear, he is a part of the "cultural war' these people are trying to wage.

    -Anonymous Lurker #213

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  28. Another thing

    To quote Oneric: "
    Now Strelnikov I don't disagree really with what your saying about the historical roots of racism. I just think that the best way for each group of people to deal with it is to stay apart while maintaining as much of a mutually beneficial dialog as possible and if possible. "

    I don't see why someone should even take a person who holds views like this seriously,or engage in dialogue with them. This is just sort of crap that is meant to put a cuter, more "tolerant" face on fascist thought.

    Magical thinking about what -race- actually is to say the least.

    None of my business how anyone else conducts themselves, i'm just surprised to see people with intellectual chops actually bothering to have dialogues with a guy who is obviously either here to stir things up (not in a good way), spy, or just troll.

    -Anonymous Lurker #213

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  29. My take is that Oneiric is involved with bullshit fascist ideology but, at least, is prepared to debate and defend those ideas. He has never been directly racist *even though his ideas are literally racist) , and has been open about arguing his ideas. His ideas may be utterly wrong, but at last he has the bollocks to defend them, and he has talked (fairly) honestly about where those ideas come from. I find that interesting, and have no problem at all with letting him represent his ideas here, even though he is fash..

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  30. No, "anonymous" above is correct — I see his point now. It is, Strelnikov, rather bizarre — considering what you have posted elsewhere on this website — that you give 'Oneric' free-rein to express his notions without criticism. Your comment above which contains your statement about his ideas being "utterly wrong" seems curiously muted in tone — it contains none of the venom that you reserve for others who have shown no such beliefs in years, or at all. This seems to the reader like a double-standard. It seems that it's not the "fash" that really concerns you — it's something else. In view of your almost tacit approval of this idiot 'Oneiric Imperium', I think it is time for you to be candid about the actual purposes of this website.

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  31. Thanks for the response Strelnikov, I get it.

    On another subject:

    I really can't agree with the sentiment that's been raised by some that these groups can't be "real fascists" simply because many of these people abide homosexuality, drug use etc. A glance back at the fascists of old would show pretty much the same thing.

    It's never been a coherent ideology.

    I'm glad this site exists, a few years back all there was on these guys was some really poor researched Antifa sites, and then on the other hand all the fans screaming about Douglas Pearce could not possibly be a Nazi, because he's gay, played in Israel, whatever.

    The only concern is how to figure out who is doing what without resorting to guilt by association...it does seem like many of these groups co-mingle in circles that are not (as far as I know) fascist really.

    I mean Current 93 as an example has had all kinds of people involved who (at least I always assumed) weren't fascist..I mean Nick have has guested on their stuff.

    So what is the criteria for figuring out who is legitimately believes this stuff, and who just happens to be around?

    Anonymous Lurker #213

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  32. "you give 'Oneric' free-rein to express his notions without criticism"

    @Phil - as far as I remember, every time Oneiric has commented I have responded with a counter-argument, so it is wrong to say that his arguments aren't criticised. I took a decision that, as he wasn't ranting, it was better to publish his comments and respond, rather than not publish them at all. That is part of the point of this site - to take on such arguments.

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  33. There ARE, indeed, legitimate reasons for maintaining a dialogue with Oneiric Imperium. For one thing, he is personally connected to the likes of David E. Williams, an influential figure in a scene which has expanded vastly and depressingly since the days when Pearce and Wakeford ruled the roost. He is in many ways emblematic of a new cockiness and confidence in the libertarian right - and previous attempts to engage these people in debate have plumbed new depths in evasion and duplicity by contrast (see the ideological contortions of Messrs. Nym and Munroe elsewhere).

    O.I. strikes me as representative of a worrying trend in North American subculture – with the reasoning skills indicative of a 'good' education, but no grasp of a wider history beyond their own experience, and that which is drip-fed to him by some fairly sophisticated fascist ideologues and which elides with his own resentments. It might be instructive to compare currents in post-punk culture here and in the States, where Hardcore has served as an umbrella for both their version of punk and the kind of skinhead activity which had all but died out here by the 1990s. In a country polarised by race, it's not surprising to find that this has become an organising principle at local level. Deeply dispiriting, but not surprising.

    For somebody with an avowed lack of respect for the social contract, O.I. seems burdened with a need to communicate. His views – and their implications – may be objectionable, but where there's engagement there's hope, and we ignore them at our peril.

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  34. "For somebody with an avowed lack of respect for the social contract, O.I. seems burdened with a need to communicate. His views – and their implications – may be objectionable, but where there's engagement there's hope, and we ignore them at our peril. "

    I guess that's true if you think that's his purposes for being here - engagement.

    Personally I doubt that very much, but I will go back to lurking and watch the conversation unfold!

    Anonymous Lurker #213

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  35. Oeneric Imperium in my opinion is just promoting himself and his friends. I think that to be here is good promotion to this pricks, in the end, they are being referring as "dangerous" and gathered with Douglas, Boyd, Wakeford, etc., their role models. Imagine for a hardcore kid to be referred by the PMRC along Jello Biafra, Penny Rimbaud and Lydia Lunch as "dangerous cultural anarcho terrorist", its the ultimate chic, isnt it? ON and the like are dying to have a feature here, thats why he started this comments, he is promoting himself and his totally unknown camerades.

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  36. @ Anonymous.

    "he is promoting himself and his totally unknown camerades." - Actually Oeneric himself is not unknown. He is I suppose notorious rather than well-known, but his reputation is not an enviable one. He is however rare amongst his fascist milieu in that he does actually discuss his beliefs reasonably openly. Discussions like the one on this thread very rarely happen. It is why this blog is so interesting.
    I would agree that Oeneric is promoting himself and his politics to some degree, and annoyingly seems to be enjoying doing so as well. But at least he serves as a warning to us here in Europe about how rapidly this racist/ apartheid/white supremacist creed of fascism can spread in a modern multi-cultural society. Cities like Portland, Detroit and Oeneric's hometown of Philadelphia are testament to this. And it was spread largely through music-centred subcultures, and so validates entirely the subject of this blog in attacking and exposing fascist propaganda in music, fashion, and other artforms. Especially as it it is so covert in Europe.
    The other good thing is you and I can call him a fascist shithead and he will read it.

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  37. The same anonymous

    I am really glad that this site exists. Anyway there is the danger of becoming a sort of "validate" for non-talented, non-succesful right wing artists and musicians.
    I rather like to see argumentation against the ideas spreaded by succesful talented artists than just screaming "fascist" to any asshole who put together a rune, a black sun, an acoustic guitar and a myspace page.
    The danger of, say, DIJ or Burzum is not their ideas but the fact that they made remarkable, beatiful records that have success. And that is giving the fascists what they never had: a coherent cultural pantheon, a symbolic system and an aura of glamour.
    Instead of helping unknown bands giving them an aura of danger and authenticism by naming them here (or insulting them), it would be better to openly discusse and disarticulate the arguments of the important heads of the fascist counterculture.
    Example: Varg was burning churches because "the Christians" destroyed Viking sacred places. Well, first "the Christians" who destroyed this places were just as Vikings as the Vikings who erected them on the first place, it was a change withing the Viking society from paganism to Christianism and not a foreign invasion.
    Second, he is assuming a moral superiority of the Viking society, they were "attacked" by Christians, who "destroy" everything. Well, the Vikings were noted in all Ancient history for pillaging, arsonism and rape.

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  38. Anonymous said: "I rather like to see argumentation against the ideas spreaded by succesful talented artists than just screaming "fascist" to any asshole who put together a rune, a black sun, an acoustic guitar and a myspace page."

    There is plenty of argument against fascist ideas already out there. The problem seems to be that there is very few speaking against these ideas in the scenes themselves...in fact from what I can piece together (i'm too old and out of it to be sure) it seems like MOST of the neofolk scene now is much more open about it's embracing of it's "European Heritage", which to me is pretty much code for that stuff.

    I'll go out on a limb here and say that most fans who aren't fascist(for example) who are really into DiJ just don't WANT to know what a sleazeball Douglas Pearce actually is. It's kind of amazing once you read a bit about him, you figure out all the dog whistle messages in his songs, and it seems as clear as day...but before you start critically thinking about it it just seems all so mysterious and cool, and how could he be a Nazi when he's gay right?

    I think that's the depth of thinking about this stuff with your average non-fascist neofolk fan, it's like it's uncool to even evaluate the symbols rationally.

    It seems crazy when you think about it that there is this active denial of of what the music is clearly about from the fanbase, how could Rose Clouds of Holocaust NOT be a holocaust denial song? Nonetheless, plenty of fans will argue until they're blue in the face that he has nothing to do with fascism,when the evidence clearly speaks to the contrary!

    Admittedly there is alot of uninformed criticism out there that amounts to just screaming "fascsist", but i'd rather see that than none at all, especially since there seems to be virtually none from within the scene itself.

    Anonymous Lurker #213

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  39. ... which begs the question, has the scene been hijacked, or was it specifically created as a propaganda vehicle for fascist advancement? On the subject of lyrics, the game of bluff and double-bluff goes back further: I have it on the good authority of someone who followed Crisis closely that, when quizzed at the time about his membership of the NF, Wakeford replied "But I was always a racialist. Listen to the lyrics of 'White Youth'...."

    I even strongly suspect that Pearce and Wakeford were using the band as a means of right-to-left infiltration, which is a fucking insult to all those involved in punk who saw it as something positive and progressive.

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  40. "
    I really can't agree with the sentiment that's been raised by some that these groups can't be "real fascists" simply because many of these people abide homosexuality, drug use etc. A glance back at the fascists of old would show pretty much the same thing."

    No offence, but you seem to have quite a bizarre idea of fascism. I am not talking about freaks that wear uniforms but in fact lead a bohemien life, I am talking about FASCISM as what it is. A militant idea that operates to create an organic society that is both social oriented yet based on a hyerarchical order based on talent, worth, etc.
    Try to light up a joing, or hit on somebody of your same sex at any right wing event (be them extreme nazi shows or more moderated new right meeting), count until 10 and see what happens to you.
    Of course there are single individuals who probably take drugs and are closet gay, but when these things become known, you can be sure they don't last long in those ranks.

    There are fascist who are anyway tolerant with some of these subjects, but are still seen as something alien to not associate with.

    Germany had Michael Kunen, who was seen as some sort of new fhurer, but not many are still quoting him as an influence after his sexual habits became known. Haider is no longer such a star for the same reason.

    Being againts drugs is one of the things that mostly separates neo-fascists (and post-fascists) from their left wing counter parts. It is part of the programs and identity of any fascist movement in Europe.

    Regarding homosexuality try to keep in mind what happened at the last DIJ show in France where Douglas P. waved a gay pride raimbow flag and some nazi moron got insulted and had to be kicked out by the security.

    No offence. But you seem to have a very bizarre idea of what being a fascist in 2011 mean. Stop reading searchlight and their hysterical whining, REAL information may be easily found around the web.

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  41. I found Oeneric Imperium contributions very interesting since he said he was an anarcho punk squatter some years ago. I've found that this is starting to happen, people going from anarcho punk scene to neo fascist/occult post-industrial and neo folk. Well, we all know where Above the Ruins and DIJ came from.
    Why this happens is something that I found really interesting and I would like to hear all opinions
    I have a couple of theories
    First, fascism is a state of mind, and many squaters anarcho punks have a very similar state of mind, have you ever attend to a meeting in an anarcho punk squat?
    Anyway is something wich happens to anarcho punx when they enter their thirties
    as the DK said "punk for a year or two/then it's time to find a real job"
    well, what if it weren't "a year or two" but 10 or 15 years, living in squats, sorrounded only by punx, all life confined within the "scene"
    The old punk is sick of it, he saw people OD, etc. and wants to integrate in the wide world, outside the punk bubble he's tired of the same slogans and the same music and the same shit
    so he find 2 problems
    a) he didnt go to college, he is a middle aged man with almost no work experience, therefore he have to start from the bottom of society, and probably stay there for the rest of his life.
    b) he is not able to live by himself, without the protection of belonging to a closed group.
    so
    a) drives him to white supremacism, since only in a white-ruled society could he enjoy some privilege, by being white.
    and
    b) leads him to integrate with another small group of radicalised people: some kind of fascist organisation this time, he needs something new, something more mature.
    Also to that groups he could bring some experience in terms of organisation and tactits, things he learn on the punk comunity, skills wich have no value in the work market, but for a small group of fascists could be useful: from how to manage a blog or a fanzine to how to design a flyer to how to organise a black block, how to squat, distribute propaganda etc. the whole DIY.
    mad? You tell me, but if you look into the new fascist groups around the world you will see many ex hc, ex crust, ex squatter people...
    As the Residents pointed out: HITLER WAS A VEGETARIAN

    steve wiseman

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  42. @Steve Wiseman:
    Thank you for addressing this subject!
    I too experienced many a case of left-right "evolution" in my time, especially surrounding the post-punk/industrial-scene, if from a European pov.
    In the late 80s/early 90s DIJ for example were hugely popular in the then burgeoning Dark-Wave/Goth-scene in Germany; the fans were quite antifa & individualist/anarcho oriented.
    To me, DIJ raised questions about ww2 and history in a different way from say Laibach, but as uneasy so you had to get first-hand information, read history books.
    That said, it's simply not true that "Rose Clouds" is presumably a holocaust denial. By that time, DP was already playing the "if you want me to be a Nazi, I'll supply you with 'evidence' that'll eventually backfire and lmao"
    -- in fact, DIJ's first single (and a few later songs) was about a Nazi death camp. The way it was done could be read either way, due to the unhealthy dose of pathos applied, but definitely not a denial.
    But back to my experience with stuff like Boyd Rice&Friends Music Martinis & Misanthropy, something like an acoustic bible for the scene:
    At the time, I too was a disillusioned (ex-)leftist/anarchist/libertarian sick of failed utopian ideas/ideologies, politics and the general human laziness to think outside the box and thus started to embrace elitist spiritual ideas in full conscience & analysed the "concepts" and ideas presented by Boyd, Mike Moynihan of Blood Axis, DIJ, Sol Invictus and C93 (the common theme being the magical/illumination/spiritual ascension strand of thought) which to me as basically a hippie were in their political aspects incompatible with my LSD-infused idealistic humanism (yes, I'm also a trekker;) so when I'd reached the point of "Let's get this trisomy into the food chain that turns all humans sterile and let mother nature start evolution all over" I realised that the dystopian misanthropy had approached the threshold of fascism, for once you have an actual means to destroy humanity, you'll also have a counter-measure at hand and find yourself selecting those worthy to survive.... and since this is something no human should have the responsibility for, I mentally distanced myself from what I had become -- pretty much the way Patrick Leagas got out of DIJ by the way.
    My conclusion is that racialism/fascism/neo-nazism are just as much a religion as any historical one. In order to work out, they need believers, yet if there is wisdom paired up with intelligence in a spiritually conscious mind, one can also enjoy the beauties of DIJ etc *without* having to turn into a ranting radical of some sort. (tbc)
    - tim23

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  43. (part 2)
    I've remained anrchist as much as possible in spite of the truth that the ideal anarchist is quite the fascist, if you think about it -- the only slight difference is the idea of a social contract of any sort or pure individual egotism. I think that Douglas Pierce is beyond that chiasm and probably gets a good chuckle out of the shadowplay on this forum and elsewheres. It's like the Gurdjieff quote Leagas now uses for 6comm:
    "Become yourself, then god and the devil don't matter."
    I've never understood the left's aversion to spirituality instead of embracing it (besides the odd esoteric wicca hippy) thus leaving the field to actual rightwingers who prey on the easily misundersatandable aesthetics used by DIJ by feeding "context" to the fans -- the (r)evolution is not going to be a class struggle thing but a mental evolution quantum leap. What we need is an illuminated anarchy; the free interaction of fully self-realised people, and I feel OI is striving for that, even if he holds segregationist views, his philosophy seems holistic (perhaps even without him realising this or the a-racial implications it holds, but we must oppose spiritual elitism/fascism of the right-wing "traditionalist" school in order to advance enlightenment and mutual cooperation to achieve the Great Work.
    As a European, I can't say that I've had experiences resembling those of OI, but I'm aware that the presumed "message" of neofolk etc have been adopted and turned around in the US; in fact I know that a black artivist who used to work with DIJ is appalled that he received increasingly spiteful comments from racist "fans" who were irritated at what is basically the liberal agenda of DIJ...

    -- having said that I'm sure I'll get a lot of flack here... bring it on :)
    Greetings, tim23

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  44. Some people commenting here don't seem to have grasped the point of this blog (Thinker, Anonymous, Gnostic Neville). You keep complaining about the blog focussing on musicians and ignoring the wider threat of far-right politics and "serious fascism". That suggests that there is such a thing as a "not serious fascist".

    Thinking
    "Fascist ideas are a very real threat now, there is no doubt about that. I don't argue with you on that point -- just don't expect these silly bands and narcissistic 'cultural figures' to be at the centre of any fascist uprising any time soon.

    You are looking in the wrong places for serious fascism."

    The blog states very clearly that it's purpose is to uncover fascists "burrowing into a subculture near you" I think is the formulation.

    I think your comments are redundant for that reason. It's a bit like going onto a gardening blog and telling them to "get over these piddling little dahlias and chrysanthemums dudes, there are fucking fifty foot oak and beech trees out there!" A clumsy analogy but you get my point.

    No one here is claiming the likes of Wakeford, Pierce et al are about to lead some violent fascist insurrection (although that would make a great comedy sketch), but they are playing their not inconsiderable part in spreading the ideas of the New Right. After all these people do sell records internationally to willing consumers of their horrible oeuvre.

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  45. @ Steve Wiseman & Tim23-

    You two aren't too far off.

    While for better or for worse I am more or less a racist I am however not a promoter of totalitarian politics.

    "There is plenty of argument against fascist ideas already out there. The problem seems to be that there is very few speaking against these ideas in the scenes themselves...in fact from what I can piece together (i'm too old and out of it to be sure) it seems like MOST of the neofolk scene now is much more open about it's embracing of it's "European Heritage", which to me is pretty much code for that stuff."

    What I don't get is why people equate this sort of sentiment with Nazism. There are no code words, its just that peoples atavistic inclinations take a variety of forms and you'd be hard pressed to make a unified politic out of it.

    Instinct over politics anyday.

    -Oneiric Imperium

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  46. Just Another Comment13 Jun 2011 04:40:00

    You actually believe in all this atavism stuff? That's just as bad, if not worse, than believing in horoscopes, tarot cards, alien abductions, and similar mumbo jumbo.

    This is one thing that always made me look at this 'scene' with great...well...derision. What is really astounding to me is that anyone, in this day and age, would still take Howard Levey (the real name of 'Anton Lavey') seriously.

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  47. To me, the line of thought that starts form Spengler/Evola and goes through the new right thinkers is extremely interesting, a real original way to go against the current system of thought based on politically correct crap, Mtv style (condoms are gret, gays are the best, black is beautiful, etc. they gpo on and on and on...)....I was an anarcho punk in my youth influenced by bands like Crass and Minor Threat but I soon found out that only through a volkish and spiritual view of the world I could retain my European heritage...in this path the music not only of Wagner, but also of Above the Ruins, Sol Invictus and death in June functioned as soundtrack of my life...against the system, like in my anarcho punk youth

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Please at least use a pseudonym so it's possible to follow your argument if you make multiple posts