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I got a rousing round of utter SILENCE from last epidsode's New Years Eve poll. So everyone is sitting home watching Dick Clark and waiting for the world to end?? I'd believe it

Saturday we couldn't decide what to do until we checked the updated Star Bar calendar and saw Slim Chance Experience listed. Slim's back from Austin after a long time at school out there so it was good to see him back home. He played an OK set, backed only by a mandolin and electric bass, but it lacked the punch of the full band. He'll be back at the Star Bar with the full lineup November 18. Meat Purveyors, coincidentally from Austin, followed, another drum-free act with mandolin in the place of banjo for their super-speed bluegrassy roots country. They did some amazing covers, including a slow, soulful Big Hunk O' Love. The lead singer has a great voice and the band does a fantastic job, particularly the mandolin player, providing a fat sound with minimal tools. They just released a CD and I was bummed I'd already blown up my weekend entertainment budget or I'd have grabbed it. Chickenwire Gang were up next, a tough act to describe. Somewhere between bebop jazz, piano lounge, Dixieland, roots country and a carnival band, randomly pushing closer to each genre with each song but rarely losing any quality of the others. (They, too, have a CD out.) Fun stuff, but they really should have been the second act, letting Meat Purveyors' up-tempo stuff wrap the show.

Full details on the fiendish things done to Jeff Clark have not been revealed due to pending investigations and charges and such, but rumor is one of the Faceless guys used Jeff's head to clean the window at the EARL. A lot of folks ask us about why we keep the writers here at Degenerate Press anonymous. While the above example of personal violence is a factor there are many others. First off, it gives readers the sense that this could be done by anyone anywhere anytime. Also the authorless quality of the broadcast fits in well with post-modern media. And there's the chance that some day your editor will get bored/killed/imprisoned and this will have to be taken over by one of you so the anonymity will provide a more seamless transition from broadcaster to broadcaster. But basically it's just easier to tell the truth from behind a mask, and if there's anything that this broadcast does well it's tell it like I see it. But if some punk ass doesn't like it and they can figure out who said it and comes lookin' to bust my (thick) head I want you to know A) I got a couple lawyers for friends and B) I got a whole BUNCH of drunk rednecks for friends who wouldn't mind stomping some dipshit into the ground. But warnings aside, this broadcast is just an opinion. You don't like it start your own damn e-zine.

"Only the insane take themselves quite seriously."
Max Beerbohm

Oddly enough, I've actually had calls for MORE on the whole tree subject. Either I've struck a cord or folks are just burnt out on the music focus we've taken the last couple years. So I hope to include more rants and raves from now on. However, that requires YOUR help. I know I ain't the only one with an ax to grind (or is that "chainsaw to sharpen"?) C'mon, kids, express yo'self! Back to the topic du jour, here's yet another Big Picture thought. No only does timber industry welfare destroy the environment through direct means such as clearcutting, but the resulting cheap lumber fuels the urban sprawl that is eating up undeveloped land at an absurd rate. Now you might be tempted jump all over me telling me "new homes provide valuable jobs for our economy!" Bullshit. Yeah, folks need a place to live. But face it, folks CAN live closer to town in pedestrian-focused communities instead of out there in the 'burbs and driving their gas-sucking SUV's two hours each way to work every damn day. So building these communities could take the place of building all those homes. And the higher density living communities take up less materials in the first place. And frequently use materials other than wood! People always come back from Europe talking about how charming those little European towns are. They're all built of stone and brick with pedestrian walkways! No ugly strip malls, no 8 story parking decks. I can tell you from experience living there feels much more like living than sitting in a damn car for a couple hours every day. Meanwhile, back at the ranch, here's some subscriber feedback and distortion on the issue: "WONDERFUL Blasphemy. I agree with the editor's position, however I have my doubts as to the efficacy, at this point, of guerrilla action. Think of the great guerillas of this century, such as Che Guevara - whose dream of revolution died for exactly the same reasons you intuit that a paper leaflet and phone-your-congressman campaign cannot succeed: the guerilla can easily be out spent. Corporate America has never had much trouble hiring its own guerilla soldiers (remember the start of the labor movement?) so I have little doubt that if eco-terrorism or eco-sabotage a la the Monkey Wrench Gang were to gain adherents who no longer owe allegience or fear to the existing power structure, we would see a massive retaliation on all levels. You would see the U.S. Rangers swarming the forests, helicopters acting as spy platforms, phone taps, congressmen excusing it all with platitudes and appropriations of millions for the "anti-terrorism force." I don't know what we are to do, if anything, but radical action is rendered moot in this age of super-industries and their PR machines. It is just as moot as handing out flyers, though it would briefly get more attention. A trivial note: Tree spiking should pose no harm to loggers. For one thing, you're supposed to place the spikes about midway up the tree where they can't be easily detected. The purpose of the spike is to make it to the saw mill where, when they rip the tree into boards, it binds those big circular saws and tears the teeth out of them. I suppose that THIS could harm bystanders, but I suspect the real reason the practice is illegal is that those blades cost a fortune to replace or repair and they shut down the mill when wrecked, thus costing added dollars; plus the company's stuck with a load of timber that is dangerous." degenerate RVI

">>That poor guy with the chainsaw in his hand has about as
>>much to do with timber industry land raping as you do with running the
Huh? Has GR been smoking crack? The poor guy with the chainsaw might only be the dick while the timber industry's doing the pushing, but to even imagine that he has nothing to do with the land being raped is ludicrous. Logging might be the highest-paying job available to him, but I don't always take the highest-paying job available to me. Do you?" degenerate JH

We've found a few gems online lately, thanks to Univision: Odalys Garc╠a is the hostess of Lente Loco:
Sof╠a Vergara is the hostess of Fuera de Serie:
Both sites have plenty of pics, both have calendars for next year due out soon. Meanwhile, in other media, degenerate SW introduced us to the best paper-based publication we've seen in a LONG time, No Depression, a zine about alternative country music. Lots of cool reviews (including lots of
locals) and articles on people like Tom Waits and Dolly Pardon. They're online too at - highly
recommended if you like
that sort of stuff.

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