What am I reading? Culture HOR is a biweekly peak into the future. We are on the edge of a paradigm shift in our culture. Like it or not, everything you hate most about modern society is here to stay. The influencer economy will overtake the 9 to 5. The blockchain will overtake the World Wide Web. The pissed off climate will overtake Miami and Tokyo and eventually the whole world. Whether today or tomorrow, change is happening, entropy is increasing, order is turning chaotic. We’re here for it.
Who are we? We’re the founders of the NFT marketplace/artist network Bouge, plus the forthcoming social media app/artwork discovery platform, Snob. Our mission is to end the exploitation of creativity and data and pay you for being yourself.
Why should I read it? We’re writing for people who creep around on the Internet, for compulsive torrenters who’ve been onto crypto since ‘07, for users of defunct music blogs from the mid ‘90s, for outlaws of the Information Age’s Wild West, for you.
Chad & El Prof
All that glitters is solid gold.
So, yeah, turns out real people care about the things the Internet cares about, too. These days, it’s NFTs, which means someone’s down to drop 24.4 million dollars at Sotheby’s on a bundle of randomly generated primate JPGs. The primates in question are the eponymous members of the Bored Ape Yacht Club and they look like something the edge lord who sat across from you in Geometry would doodle.
If you, too, are bored, it’s understandable. Maybe you don’t give a shit about (and/or have $150,000 to spend on) a glorified video game skin. But, like any form of art, the only thing objective about NFTs is their demand, which at the time of writing is as close to the moon as it’s ever been. So I’m getting in while the getting’s good. You think motherfuckers were out here buying Jackson Pollock for the aesthetic? No.
Besides. 8173 could get.
Everything (read: nothing) changed.
Last week on Main Street we learned nothing from Jurassic Park. California called a governor a governor. A feminist called a facist a facist. A former president called a terrorist a terrorist. You will get vaccinated and that’s an order. A game of thrones is being played by the Haitian Prime Minister. A new phone is the same as an old phone. There’s one less laugh in the world now. The last one has yet to come.
Here’s the deal — NFT art sucks. No one ever said it’s good, but I want it on the record. It’s awful. What I would do to find an actual artist trending when I check these stats in the morning. Seriously, I know some of you talented motherfuckers are out there, just sitting behind a closed door waiting to be discovered. Feel free to say hello.
This week, our top project of the last 24 hours on OpenSea is Generative Art Genpallete Collection. With such a mouthful of a name, I’d never have expected to feel so empty. These algorithmically generated Photoshop splatter paint pieces sell for a minimum of .5 ETH, and Stratster, the ‘artist’ behind the collection, has collected a cool 74 ETH in the last day. For the mathematically challenged among us, that’s nearly $200k.
I don’t want to shit on this project too much. Plenty of these pieces would make a nice — I don’t know. Tapestry? Wallpaper? Phone background? Stratster’s clearly much more talented as a developer than as an artist. But I can’t hate. Proving out blockchain use cases while raking in a Bentley’s worth of fake money seems like a fair exchange.
For the gawkers out there that still think buying .jpegs is like tossing your brain in a Ninja and hitting blend — stop thinking of them as pictures, start seeing them as raw data, and remember that the nerds at Google and Facebook are worth trillions because of it. So maybe instead of gawking, put your work out there and cash in, too.
Watch the full review on El Prof’s Youtube and subscribe for a daily dose of the culture economy.
So deep underground it’s a Nazi alien.
Released in honor of the eponymous, late Soundcloud alien god, Xenu is not the product of a bygone past but rather a time capsule for the future. The majority of the songs fall below the 2 minute mark and the whole project is over in under 15. It’s a feat then, while catering to our diminished attention span, just how moving it can be.
TTC’s habit of censoring himself once he’s hit a flow — i’m on that — i got some — i don’t need — cause i’m fine — on bite sized bangers like Damaged and Notice Me gives the songs’ meanings a nebulous, timeless vibe. On any track he could be mourning a lost love or fallen brother or maybe just change itself. It doesn’t matter, he seems to be saying — the emotions stay the same. And even through his detached, icy delivery, they remain front and center throughout Xenu, never more prevalent than at its peak, Pretending I Don’t Miss You, a lofi bedroom bop, clearly of the quarantine era, but with the enduring, bone deep qualities of a song you’re sure you’ve heard before, although only 200 listeners can boast of doing so.
A top shelf collection of glitch hop world beats that sound like a malevolent AI approximating the discography of God, or at least, the Alchemist — which any fan of the underground knows amounts to the same thing. This is drag racing Lambos down the Mediterranean coast with corrupt Croatian politicians music, plain, simple.
The soundtrack to many a euphoric dissociation of mine, I’d be remiss not to share these criminally understreamed gems by the Dreamcaster of the DMV, GARÇON. Each composition (“beat” doesn’t do them justice) is ripe for a Frank Ocean feature, but for now, Culture HOR is the best we can do. Share this. Change that.
Recorded on Apple ear pods in (you guessed it) a hotel, Yung Neanderthal proves once again you don’t need an extravagant studio setup to make an immaculate dream pop banger.