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30 January 2012

About Violins...The Devil's Instrument

Did you notice the amount of gothic pictures featuring violins? Ever wondered why? Well, it appears that violin is connected with the macabre!

 Here's for you some very interesting facts I found about this:


"Associations between the violin and death or the devil reside deep in the modern Western consciousness. Traditional, popular, and classical music cultures have reinforced this viewpoint many times over. The identity of the "Devil as fiddler" has evolved in stages over the past two millennia or longer as numerous religious beliefs, folk legends, and literary tales merged to produce a central myth.

Roots of this myth trace back to ancient Greek religious cults. Instruments were commonly associated with specific deities and their ethical attributes. Accordingly, string instruments were thought to possess enormous restorative powers.



This correlation between musical instruments and moral states appealed to early Christians. Medieval society invoked music to rationalize the constant intrusions of warfare, plague, and death. In literature and folk lore, the sound of pipes frequently accompanied Death on his gruesome rounds. During the Middle Ages, string instruments enjoyed quite different affiliations. Ecclesiastical artists commonly selected the soft-toned vielle, rebec, or lira for symbolic representations of goodness and the divine. Saintly figures, angels, and cherubim often held these mellow-sounding instruments in hand. Thus, the ancient Apollonian stereotype was retained for centuries in Western Europe.


The mid-sixteenth-century emergence of a new family of strings, including the violin, changed everything. The violin's popularity grew with enormous swiftness, primarily because of its loud tone and secure tuning. 

The earliest artistic renderings of the violin date from the 1570s. In these, peasant performers accompany group dancing, an activity denounced in the afterglow of the Protestant Reformation and Catholic Counter-Reformation. Many writers blamed the Devil for the very existence of dance. The Devil, as the agent of Death and creator of dance, became inextricably linked to the violin during the Renaissance period. 



Tales of demonically endowed fiddle players first emerged during the seventeenth century. For example, the eighteenth -century Italian violinist Giuseppe Tartini raised the degree of diabolical intervention with his claims of a dreamy pact with the Devil.

Tales of supernatural contracts between musicians and the Devil proliferated during the nineteenth century, fueled by the immensely popular story of the scholar Faust and his calamitous pact with Mephistopheles. Many people believed the only explanation for Nicolo Paganini's unparalleled violin technique was a Faustian alliance with the Devil. The Italian violinist parlayed this demonic mystique into a phenomenally lucrative concert career. Furthermore, the superhuman virtuoso image- long hair, angular features, sly grin, and slender figure- originated with Paganini.





Condemnation of the violin as an instrument of the Devil spread during the nineteenth century to other parts of Europe and North America.

The relationship between the Devil and string music has resurfaced in recent popular music. Bluesmen believed that if a guitarist reached the crossroads at midnight, he would receive supernatural virtuosic abilities in exchange for his soul. Early blues-inspired rock artists- among them the Rolling Stones, Cream, and Led Zeppelin- perpetuated this mystical aspect. Heavy metal artists consciously adopted Paganini's nineteenth-century virtuoso image in their powerful stage presence, styles of hair and clothing, and musical pyrotechnics. The electric guitar provides a modern high-voltage equivalent to the violin.


No contemporary song better illustrates the persistence of the "Devil as fiddler" than the 1979 country-rock hit "The Devil Went Down to Georgia" by the Charlie Daniels Band. The Devil encounters a young man "who plays the fiddle hot" and challenges him to a musical duel, the outcome of which is unexpected: After centuries of bargaining, humankind has finally produced a musician whose natural skills surpass the Devil's.


Four symphonic poems lie buried within the enormous orchestral catalogue of French composer, organist, and pianist Camille Saint-Saens (1835-1921). The first, second, and fourth drew their inspi- ration from the mythological accounts of Omphale, Phaeton, and Hercules. The third, however, corresponded to a contemporary poem by Henri Cazalis (alias lean Lahor). These verses, quoted above, tell of a frenzied demonic dance that takes place after the stroke of midnight- the witching hour. Saint-Saens completed his Danse macabre in 1875 and published the score a year later. He also made several arrangements, including for violin and piano and for two pianos.




Some orchestral players rebelled against the literal representation in Danse macabre and only reluctantly participated in the premiere at a February 3, 1875 program of the Concert National under Edouard Colonne. The critic Adolphe Julien complained that the piece "has everything but a musical idea, good or bad." He continued by describing it as either "an aberration or a hoax." Audiences, on the other hand, took enormous glee in the fiendish orchestral score. The bells toll midnight on All Hallow's Eve. Death, playing an oddly mistuned violin, summons skeletons (depicted in the orchestral version by the rattling "bones" of a xylophone) from their graves to dance a macabre waltz- an ominous parody of the Dies irae chant from the Mass for the Dead. These spectral figures dance until the rooster crows dawn, then they return to their tombs until the next year."











23 January 2012

Gothic Dead Dolls -The Creepiest Doll Collection EVER!

I just found the creepiest collection of dolls I've ever seen. Really, I'm sure I will have nightmares tonight after only seeing the pictures of these dolls. So if you are susceptible or get scared easily 
DO NOT LOOK AT THIS DOLLS! 
I don't want to imagine what it would be like to actually own one...and keep it in the bedroom. But I think even knowing it's still locked inside its box would anyway make you feel really uncomfortable..!! 

These are some examples of the dolls:




I think this dolls are the incarnation of the word "horror"..what do you think?

The artist's name is D.L. Marian  and you can see other creations in this site:

The Legend Of The Sleepy Hollow

"The Legend of Sleepy Hollow" is a short story by Washington Irving contained in his collection The Sketch Book of Geoffrey Crayon, Gent., written while he was living in Birmingham, England, and first published in 1820. 

 

It tells the story of Ichabod Crane and his hapless attempt to win the heart and hand of Katrina Van Tassel in the context of a comical ghost story. Ichabod comes to Sleepy Hollow, New York, from his home state of Connecticut, to be the schoolmaster of the village. Sleepy Hollow is a small, very quiet town said to be under some kind of enchantment. Its residents all seem to move a little slower, daydream a little more, and be more prone to believe in the supernatural. Sleepy Hollow, maybe for that reason or maybe because its residents are almost all descended from its original Dutch settlers, has more than its fair share of supernatural occurrences, or at least stories of them. 

Sleepy Hollow’s most famous supernatural phenomenon is the ghost of the Headless Horseman, said to be a Hessian soldier who lost his head to a cannon ball during the Revolutionary War. The Horseman is seen most often riding by the church, where local historians say he was buried. He is believed to be always in search of his head. Ichabod is fascinated by this story, being especially interested (and prone to believe) in tales of the supernatural.

 

Ichabod is a strict teacher but not a cruel one, doling out his punishment of the rod only to those who can handle it. Ichabod makes almost no money, and it is customary in the village for the farmers whose sons he teaches to feed and board him in rotation. Along with this, Ichabod makes some extra money teaching singing lessons—he prides himself greatly on his magnificent voice. This arrangement keeps him employed and gives him many opportunities to hear ghost stories from the farmers’ wives and eat meals with the farmers’ daughters. He also has an insatiable hunger and a taste for the finer things.

Katrina Van Tassel, a beautiful young woman of eighteen, is one of Ichabod’s students. She is also the only child of Baltus Van Tassel, one of the more successful farmers in the area. Ichabod is quickly taken in by her flirtatious charms, but it is when he first visits her father’s abundant farm that he considers himself truly in love with her, or at least her likely inheritance.

"Ichabod Crane and Katrin Van Tassel interpreted by Johnny Depp and Christina Ricci in Tim Burton's movie adaptation of  the book"

He quickly sets out to win her hand in marriage, coming by the Van Tassel farm frequently to woo her. Ichabod is not alone in his attentions to Katrina, however. Her beauty, charm, and wealth have entranced many other men in the village, especially the formidable Brom Van Brunt, also known as Brom Bones. Brom is notorious for his boisterous personality, love of pranks, and great skill at horseback riding—all of which make him something of a village hero.

Brom has already scared off many of Katrina’s other suitors, but Ichabod is harder to shake, avoiding physical confrontation with Brom, which is Brom’s main method of intimidation. Without that option, Brom turns to his next best skill—pranks. He fills the school house with smoke, trains a dog to follow Ichabod around howling, and sets many other pranks to frustrate and humiliate Ichabod.

One day, a messenger comes to the schoolhouse to invite Ichabod to a party at the Van Tassels’. At this party, he apparently finds himself the best man in the house, and when the party is over he stays behind. For some reason, however, Katrina disappoints him. Ichabod leaves crestfallen.

 


He finds the path home dark and eerily quiet. He tries to keep himself from getting too scared, but soon after he has passed the possibly haunted Major Andre’s tree, he sees a large, dark figure looming nearby. It does not respond to his call, but as he passes by, it starts to move and joins him on the path riding a large, dark horse. Ichabod is greatly disturbed and tries to shake off his pursuer, but he fails. Finally, he notices that the rider has no head on his shoulders; the head seems to be sitting on the saddle in front of the man. Ichabod tries to get his decrepit horse to run home as fast as it can, but he is not a skilled rider and the horse resists.

They end up by the church, the scene of most of the stories of the Headless Horseman, and Ichabod races to the bridge where the ghost is said to disappear and not follow. Ichabod crosses the bridge and looks back, but he sees the Horseman, instead of disappearing, hurl his detached head at him. It knocks Ichabod off of his horse.

The next day, Ichabod’s horse returns to its owner’s farm, but there is no sign of Ichabod. A search party finds hoof prints and Ichabod’s hat, with a smashed pumpkin left next to it. Ichabod is never heard from again in Sleepy Hollow, although later on it seems that he is alive elsewhere and has told his story. Some of the townspeople believe that Brom Bones pulled off a great prank—which put Brom in the final position to marry Katrina—but the old women and local folklore maintain that he was taken by the Headless Horseman.

Disney has done an cartoon adaptation of the book too!


14 January 2012

Betsey Johnson - When Barbies go bad!

Last time I went to the US I went to this big HUGE shopping mall and found a Betsey Johnson's shop. Why did God make me go there?!?! It was full of fantastic amazing things!! it was like a shop for alternative barbies :) Everything so glamourous and punk at the same time! The right amount of freakness in every piece!  Well Betsey herself can be considered a freak, a Barbie with platinum blond hair and a "criminal" mind ready to make her fashion victims.

Betsey Johnson - stylist -

Here you are some examples of the things you can find in her shops all around the world!! :D I find some of her creations very gothic..that's why I decided to share with you about her! :)

Dresses




Shoes



Purses and bags



Thumbs up for Betsey J.!

05 January 2012

Movies for the weekend !

Haven't suggested you movies for a long time! It's about time that I do it again!! Here are for you some movies for you weekend!

DEAD BIRDS 


"In Civil War-era Alabama, a band of outlaws takes refuge at an abandoned plantation after robbing a bank that held a cache of Confederate gold. Led by William, the group includes Sam, Todd, Annabelle, Clyde and Joseph. They intend to flee to Mexico, but nightfall and a thunderstorm force the robbers to remain in place. As the night wears on, each member of the group begins to have visions of the atrocities that occurred within the house. As supernatural forces begin to manifest themselves, the six turn on one another. "

FRAGILE


At her new job in a rundown children's hospital, a nurse desperately tries to keep her patients safe from a plague of random, mysterious attacks of what the children calls "the mechanical girl"..



GOTHIKA



Gothika is a 2003 supernatural horror film. Halle Berry plays a psychiatrist in a women's mental hospital who wakes up one day to find herself on the other side of the bars, accused of having murdered her husband.


THE SKELETON KEY

 

This supernatural horror film focuses on a young hospice nurse who acquires a job at a Terrebonne Parish plantation home, and becomes entangled in a mystery involving the house, its former inhabitants, and the hoodoo rituals and magic that took place there.

♥ Have a nice gothy weekend ♥

How to convert poseurs to real goths!

I found this while surfing the internet randomly and I'd like to share with you this mini-guide found on wikihow on how to convert your wannabe-goth friend into a real one.

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Isn't she stunning beautiful? :D



"Let us say you know someone who claims to be a Goth while being rather uneducated as to what it means to be one, assuming bands like Evanescence and books such as Vampire Kisses are the height of goth. She isn't bad, simply uneducated. If you are willing to go through a bit of work, you can educate this poseur on what gothic culture truly is, and rather than being a poseur, she could be a genuine goth - or, at the very least, know what a genuine goth is.


1-This typically only works if you already are a real goth, or at least know the ins and outs of gothic culture... so if you don't know much about the gothic subculture, music, fashion, etc. you should either work on that or give up now.


2-Become her friend. Even if she seems kind of dorky to you, act like she is fairly cool. She happens to be ignorant of the culture, not necessarily a stupid person in general and certainly not inferior.


3- Say you heard an awesome band called Sisters of Mercy, and that Andrew Eldritch's voice reminds you of the lead singer from HIM. If she likes HIM, of course. When she gets excited, offer to burn her a CD. See if she shows interest.


4-If she does show interest, continue to have her listen to other goth bands through burning her a CD, having her listen on your MP3 player or just putting on one of their albums while you two are hanging out. Take her out and buy some goth music together. You might even want to buy an album or two as a gift, if you're willing to spend money.


5-Now that she has the basics of Goth music, you may want to work on her clothes. See which type of goth she likes best, then take her out and find some clothes which fit the category (or categories) of goth she fits into the most. Obviously, this may be done with a male poseur as well. Perhaps you should just start out by finding her a nice Alien Sex Fiend T-shirt, and keep going from there. Don't dictate her entire wardrobe, just send her in the right direction so she'll be able to choose better for herself. Considering the clothes don't make the person, they are not incredibly important in whether or not someone happens to be goth, but simply something to think about if you wish.


6-We've have music and clothes... what about literature? She may like Vampire Kisses and Twilight, seeing them as goth, but has never heard of this Lord Byron fellow. The books you suggest she reads should be based on what she already likes. If she enjoys Stephen King's horror, she should try H.P Lovecraft. If she prefers the Vampire Kisses books or other vampire novels, perhaps Anne Rice and Bram Stoker would be good starting points. For the poseur who doesn't read because she thinks it isn't cool (or simply hates it) buy a comic, like Johnny the Homicidal Maniac, graduate to Sandman, then graduate to Poppy Z. Brite, then graduate to the more mind-opening gothic reading material.


7-Finally, film. In many cases, poseurs tend to watch slasher flicks, anything by Tim Burton... and not much else. Consider The Hunger, Queen of the Damned, Nosferatu, The Craft, and of course, Rocky Horror Picture Show... if you're already into gothic culture, you probably already know.

8-Throughout this process, the most important aspect is not necessarily the entertainment and certainly not the fashion. The most important step is to ensure she is educated on Goth's philosophical view. The Black Aesthetic, the separation from the mainstream, embracing things which most people simply ignore... the philosophical side of Goth is far better than the side which is all black candles and cool music with an excellent bassline. It is a beautiful thing, and she needs to realize this above all else.


9-If you are so inclined, you may follow up with some new decor for her room, interesting hobbies or a trip to a gothic club. This is up to you, however; this article covers the necessities of educating her a bit on the culture of Goth, and getting rid of her poseur tendencies.


10-And now, the final step: change more poseurs! The pretenders amongst the Goth subculture are precisely what is ruining it, and need to be either educated or removed from this scene. Considering that educating them is an easier option, it's probably the best way. With every poseur you convert, you're helping the subculture. Change as many as you possibly can.


WARNINGS:

♥Don't tell her she is a poseur during the process of changing her. This is pointless and would only make her angry.

♥ Never, ever seem like you're forcing it onto her - keep it very natural.
♥It's fine if she wants to keep her Evanescence CDs... just make sure she does not mistake that type of band as goth and knows what real goth music is.
♥Also, if she's into this because she has depression, is suicidal, cutting herself, etc., get her professional help as soon as you can. You might be saving her life. In addition, depression isn't a good reason to go into the Gothic subculture."


    What do you think about this mini-guide? Do you agree with all this guide says?
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