*note1: By the time this file is released, #ReptilianClubBoyz will no longer be a thing, maintaining Diamondsonmydick as its only original member. This is a partaken curse made as I am writing it. This would lead him to pull a newly-born label, Vampstar Records, while most of the collective will go on to form Glacier Boys
note2: By the time this goes public, my grandpa’s diagnosis remains uncertain, just as his mental, memory state and medical treatments.
- Soulja Boy, 2011.
- Lil Yawh, 2017.
- Cartier God, 2019.
- Genesis Breyer P-Orridge, 1983.
I sit at the edge of this bedroom’s window. Balancing. You know life’s all about that balancing. Watching the police car across the street, and how it decides to stay parked and still, with its police lights on. I mean, why would they do that? Fuck.
Under what circumstances is that a good idea? What are they thinkin’? Are they even thinking about it?
High on shrooms and smokin’ weed from the safe distance of the window’s bedroom and what it represents for me (as a shelter) and for them (as a private property which cannot be simply trespassed by public workers), for both of us, I sit still and watch. “Sharing”, the brain hisses.
Gazing at the cop’s lights with the same intention behind stray (or home) dogs, when barking at them on the street. Gazing like a form of barking, of sense-mediated hypnosis. Like a spell. I start not-to-think.
The important thing here are the lights: Why aren’t they turned off? Why bother someone with those ugly-ass red-and-blue props? Why am I so drawn to them? Why do I look at them with such vividness? Am I a dog? Am I a pig? Like the cops? Just want to bark at those fuckers ‘till they’re gone.
What am I thinking? Am I even thinking about it? I “think” I have an answer to this last question. The first thing which comes to mind is no.
I’m simply not-thinking, a process just as proper to my existence as a flesh-and-heat-driven corporality as any other constitutive process of flesh-and-heat-driven corporalities. Ones more evident in everyday cosmopolitan life than others, such as thinking. And barking. But I definitely do not understand why to park that car and leave the fuckin’ police lights on. I just want to get over this, so I get down the window’s frame and back into the bed.
When vulnerable and high, any type of high, one could associate certain popular and typically punitive sanctions (substance-based addiction as a civil danger) to a personal scale of recreational decisions (maybe I just happened to have drugs and got high?). Nevertheless, addiction exists. It’s a physical and somatical process. Such as not-thinking and barking. And as such, it provides several arbitrational lanes for conducting energy and participating in meatspace (‘being’ alive, etc…) without withdrawing from the actual consequences at a ‘reasonable’ plane (at some point, your mind ends up dwelling due to your body’s addiction and decay).
As indicated above, there are several arbitrational lanes within any energy-conducting process, not just through getting high, feeding a potential addiction or looking at the cops from across the street until they leave. The exploration of these processes as affective efforts (whether it comes from will or sentiments) allows an existent to dilute frontiers (as a territorial and physical metaphor) between fantasy and meatspace realms, and to some extent, the sanctions and detriments commonly constitutive of these frontiers. Some of these affective explorations end up becoming lanes of active dilutment, which we understand as an inescapable condition for surviving and habitating reality, not just its (human) frontiers. ‘Being-alive’, y’know?
One of those lanes, traditionally attributed to the primal exercise of not-thinking, is the magickal one. Spellcasting. Hexing, you might say.
It is Thursday now, and I am sober. At least kind of. It always seems to be a motive to incite “distractive states” over oneself, just like when you just cannot figure out why time goes the way it goes. whether it be faster, slower, or completely paused… Seems like distraction works in a similar way as time: as a primal element, rather than a mere factor. Like a natural element. With all its contingencies.
Today is the day I go to my grandma’s and help her with the kinwork related to grandpa’s health. He has Alzheimer. Big liver failure as well, the main reason for his 3-times-a-week visits to an artificial doctor and a very real dialysis machine. He’s kinda fucked up. With or without the diseases. Not a good person. But that does not matter nor influences any position towards resenting shared care over an aging individual, at least not from an apparent position of “respect for the elders”. Besides, it is really amusing -to say the least- to help out grandma with his dying husband (not partner).
It drives me to a place of complete suspension, distraction, atemporality. A place where I remember things about my grandparents. Things not physically shared, probably because I’m young and dull. About old age. About what has been done. Thought. And sometimes about what hasn’t yet. Magickal things. Moments. Actions. Thoughts. All of this while my grandpa is dying.
There is this one time when we’re helping grandpa take a shower, which automatically led me to a meatspace occurence some years ago, a memory related to a once dearly beloved partner. A feeling which has been gone for a while since.
In this memory, the beloved one and myself shared an active relationship, whether it be considered from a carnal and/or emotional aspect. We said nice things to each other, and made each other’s company beyond words. Actions. Thoughts. A sharing space. At least, for a moment.
During this spatio-temporal onset is where I proceeded to make a deliberately vulnerable act of appreciation, in the form of a gift. “Maybe too deliberate”, I think in silence, scrubbing the old man’s gloom translated into dead skin, dying brain, vanishing memories. I keep wandering.
In this memory, this gift had a couple of motifs: the one of generating surprise under (personal) expectations, and of satisfying certain cultural enterprises, such as the one called ‘birthday’.
The birthday of this person, once dearly beloved, was far enough so that I could execute this gift, all of this without taking into consideration the possible repercussions behind naive enactment, such as any enactment driven by expectations of any sort. Consequences of passive-thinking, rather than not-thinking. Cowardice. The kind of ‘thinking’ discursively dependent on another human’s opinion to be publicly alleged.
Lately, I’ve been reading the Bible, “Jeremiah 17:5, y’kno”, I say within my flesh. The brain keeps mind-roaming. (Not) thinking.
This gift took the form of a DIY-printed version of “The Book Of Self-Love” by Austin Osman Spare, a quintessential tool for not-thinking. This was motivated given the newly-found interest of the beloved one into magickal practices, back then. I didn’t have any personal drive nor openness to fields and practices of such nature, nor were they with me, back then.
There was a lack of confidence, predisposition and loyalty altogether towards not-thinking, back then. Maybe there wasn’t, but who knows. What once was, has passed. Oh well.
The book was ensembled with a personalized illustration as the front cover, made by a dear friend. It was a beautiful illustration, depicting a stone portal in the middle of a hazy fall-esque scenario. Full of weeds, hideouts formed by the assembly given between the drawn stones, of all shapes, sizes, textures. Non-thinking entities. Natural elements. Just as time and distractions. ‘Objects’ is how pragmatic thinking tends to verbalize it, later classify it.
Once the book cover was finished, the book printed, the will active, the body proceeded to sew the book, to make it crafty, cute, ornamental. “With natural vibes”, I whispered. A book had never been sewn by this body before. It got messy, really messy. ‘Bloody’ would be the appropriate term. But I had to do something. With a finished cover, a printed book, an active will and definitely focused mind, not necessarily set under the ‘reasonable’ plane ground rules, something had-to-be-done. Like when you pissed yourself off due to police cars going around the hood, mostly because of drug-driven sensitive states previously poked at. Something like barking, getting high or staring at flashy lights… Something intimate. Something.
A series of abstract, willful, mindful drawings using blood taken out of the sewing wounds, or the new wounds made thoroughly through the process, were the final detail. “It is done”, was the conclusion once the blood stopped dripping, the wounds lost willfulness, the body felt sleepy. It looked good. It looked beautiful. It was beautiful, yet heavily egoist; really underthought. This mix of emotions, intimacy and exploration of lanes related to sense-mediated hypnosis (after all, this was my first encounter with ‘not-thinking’) was not well received by the beloved one, once received. At all. “It was awful and creepy”, they said. They were not wrong. It was. The memory faded kindly.
There I was, washing backs, my grandma with her somber eyes, my grandpa with the only eyes he has left: the memory-lacking ones. This is way more colorful than what you could rhetorically depict, actually.
It has that mindfulness, willingness, proper to environments filled with natural elements, yet through constitutive artificial mediators of stability and welfare to-think, such as the ones cosmopolitan housing represents. Or dialysis machines. Or drugs. Nevertheless, there’s a level of vulnerability which I cannot simply subdue as an effect of the mundane and glorious activity of elder-washing. “I want to leave”, grandma says. Willingness faded kindly, for everyone in the room.
It is Monday now, and things are kinda hyped up. Took some breakfast early in the morning and proceeded to sit the body down, and give the staring function a break. I started to reminisce on artificially-mediated memories. Dreams within dreams. Both of the confessions made above seem to reflect -now, from a retrospective outlook- on a certain field of fragility mostly alien to what cosmopolitan civil-scenarios of production allow to flourish, yet possible due to the technological infrastructure given by this same societal model. This cosmopolitan lifestyle is what allowed me, on the first case, to even have the access to the works and posterior discussions over Osman Spare’s work, not to mention the relationship held with the beloved one; on the second case, grandpa wouldn’t exist today if it weren’t for the machines. These are not antagonistic factors within an intimate experience. Moments of vulnerability. Akin to the already described spaces of sense-mediated hypnosis. Magickal avenues given the emergence of these spaces for cosmopolitan intimacy, to call it a way.
The thing here is that we’re still-thinking, and need to get rid of that. A break. A non-meatspace occurrence. Once the body stood up, it went to grab some water.
Magickal practices, within the historical context they’re commonly given into the constitution of the Imperial West and the globalized/cosmopolitan world, tend to be classified under a trilogical mode of thought; derivative, yet hierarchical. This constitutes the heart behind the idealistic tradition of Western and philosophical thinking, taken into account both the ‘World of Ideas’ of Plato and its conquer-driven expansion into Christianity and western mysticism. The latter may be exemplified by the theological insights of the ascetic eunuch, Origen Adamantius, which incorporates this platonic view of the divine/non-human as ultimately unreachable, reflected onto its apophatic view of the Holy Trinity.
This apophatic (or negative) view of everything non-human, yet prescient; derivative, yet hierarchical, takes over all of Magick’s history and territorial expansion, even when it comes to its most contemporary outtakes. The ones given through cosmopolitan intimacy, for example.
There are infinite ways of conceiving the export and execution of magickal practices from a reference point in the contemporary moment. The cosmopolitan world, as acknowledged from several practitioners, both actual and ancient, is not disjunctive with nonproductive processes, at least while they keep interacting through secular/cosmopolitan tools (i.e. financial exchange systems, exploitation-fueled resources, technological outputs and gadgets). Authors like Peter Carroll, on his Liber Null (1978), discuss a series of conditions (nonetheless, contingent) and historical overviews in favor of a pluralist and effective approach to magick, which Carroll embraces from an offset almost as disciplinarily aligned with chaos magic as it is with the post-industrial paradigms of the pre-Thatcher era. In this particular work, Carroll points out two things to remark:
- The Liber MMM, primordial state for any approach to the magickal spectrum, understood as a compound of exercises focused on the ‘mastering’ of ‘magical trance’ (or sense-mediated hypnosis) is given along the readers, with the ambiguous condition that the practitioner must be “healthy” in order to effectuate said exercises (1978, pg. 13), whatever that means. Nonetheless, not-thinking has a punctual stance within these primordial practices.
- The historical trace under which Carroll locates his own organization, the IOT, and himself, in the ‘magical tradition’ which, as imperialist and hierarchical (yet derivative) it may be, ends up becoming sardonically re-produced by a whole bunch (if not all) of contemporary and institutionally-approved takes on magick in the globalized world, including the ones linked with cognition and positive-oriented cybernetics, proper of our current times.
It could also be proper to point out a more ‘pedestrian’ review on the history of Magick given the continuation of Western geopolitical expansionism, as an exercise in historical contrast. Without further distance from the ‘occultist trace’ given above, it can be said that the Middle Age, particularly Medieval Europe, works as a functional starting point when it comes to three of the most influential branches of Western magickal thought to this day, including the upbringings (not embracement) of ‘chaotic-trendiness’: Wicca, Satanism (or Messianism) and Ceremonial Magick.
This line of thought, although didactic and easy to grasp, shares numberless similarities with the pre-conceptions of Magickal lanes already detailed, including the sea of complexities behind the static/negative vision within them. So it seems proper to <casually> land on the necessity of a third choice, just as in magickal upbringings, dialectical discussions, modern-day paradigms, apophatic visions. Not yet spaces for not-thinking, practically speaking.
Also from a modern-day perspective, heterodoxus practitioners such as Alan Moore, John Michael Greer or Hakim Bey locate their work as reconciliations between these more ‘traditional’ takes on Magick’s history and an overarching sense of disruption against the cosmopolitan urgence and public demand for current institutionalized order (imperialist, derivative, hierarchical) framed as a ‘global necessity’. This is what makes them ‘noncapitalist’ magickal agents under a techno-capital regime. In the end, they do manage all of this counter-ethos under the world of the “public image” and the productive/financial fringes of the ‘author-who-publishes’, with relative success must be said. You know life’s all about that balancing.
Rescuing the position of the former, Moore recalls this imperial-driven lane of Western magickal throughout the current era, acknowledging the only pragmatic principle shared between these typically ‘esoteric’ (secretive, non-shareable) schools/institutions/traditions: what is Magic, and what’s it for. None of ‘em makes it exoteric, which is to say clear and shareable, and that’s kinda the point.
Given this apophatic conclusion, Alan Moore contrasts it from an anarchist (non-hierarchical) overview: in any practice, under any realm, at any epoch, the thing with magick are the moment(s) of intermission within any energy conducting process, space on which an existent can have a virtually realizable participation if they act with will, rituals aside, rationalisms aside, non-fungible pretentiousness and ambitions aside.
The author reads this disjointment from the colonial outlook which interlocks Magick in the West as a positive suspension from spatio-temporal demands and/or requirements for a magickal practice to be considered legitimately real, reading this positive suspension as an artistic element. To say it some way, to see Magick not as art, but as The Art:
“…immediate and irrefutable, immense(…) In reclaiming magic as The Art(…) it is probable that those made most uneasy by the proposition would be those who felt themselves unprivileged by such a move, those who suspected that they had no art to offer which might be sufficient to its task.(…) By understanding art as magic, by conceiving pen or brush as wand, we thus return to the magician his or her original shamanic powers and social import, give back to the occult both a product and a purpose. Who knows? It might turn out that by implementing such a shift we have removed the need for all our personally-motivated causal charms and curses, our hedge-magic.”
- Alan Moore, “Fossil Angels” (2002).
It’s this immediateness, immenseness, irrefutability, the intertwine for any type of hexing/spellcasting with current spaces for cosmopolitan intimacy, everyday more and more scarce for a thinking mammal, not a willful one. Yet, we’re not only aiming for a prurient interaction and channeling of sense-mediated hypnosis, we’re also aiming to share it. There are few things which locate us under the umbrella of welfare and common terms, ironically characteristic of the good ol’ “world citizen”. One of them is music(k). The other one is getting old. Genesis 3:19, y’kno.
These are things I get to appreciate when dreaming, high, washing elders or just exercising prescience. An exercise deeply urged by grandpa. The body went off to watch the moon.
It is Wednesday the 26th, full moon tonight, sometimes the ability to recognize advantages ends up being pretty acute. It’s been awhile since moving to grandpa’s house full time, mostly because of erratic behaviors and the anatomical consequences of ever-changing medicine clusters obediently transmitted to his meatspace based on a set of inconsistent diagnosis given by artificial doctors, no real machines. Plus, grandma is really old, she could use some help. I like helping.
He has begun recuperating some of his own memories, just as his shrewdness at being stubborn. Stubborn with his pleasures, his self-righteousness, his bullshit self. With grandma, his familial circle, his meatspace. It’s already been said, the dude is dying and we’re all witnessing it, yet with a typical underestimation of death within welfare conditions for the civil-way-of-life. There’s no linearity within time when a memory ends up shattered for a life of vices and commodities. For a life of senseless welfare. Still, his body is sick, irregular, and isolated. He needs help. But I don’t want to help him. I want to share, with him. Dead or alive, with or without memories. Things which do not add nor deduct.
To be honest, I don’t do much besides helping the man not go crazy, given the attention needed in swap-clothing, meal-making and occasional night-watching. A casual exchange of words tends to happen, yet a bitter body does not react well to unsolicited talk nor help, both things which I provided. To be completely honest, he started to remember a bunch of shit, all of a sudden, which included this dull behavior of refusing to respond unless initiating the talk, yet my /given/ name is not included in this suddenness. Oh well.
When not attending to the old man’s decaying, the body just listens to music. And sometimes, not just the body. Affections, dreams and intentions start to gang up while still, yet flowing. Plural, not derivative. Implicitly obeying the blood-law of care, explicitly conducting a non-hierarchical sense-mediated hypnosis, that which takes my grandpa not as a transhumanist exemplary fleshbag with disavowed maladies, but as an equal. As someone which seems to be disaggregated from his own life conditions and vanishing will, yet breathing. This, by the sole justification of time-passing. And he needs a break from it. Hell, I need a break from it.
To bark at the streets gets its potential diluted when gazing at the night sky, throwing a computer off the window, bathing a body under moonlight. Music stops making sense, and starts being sensed. This is not strange to my particular existence, yet its newly-revised potency is very much welcomed.
As soon as it became a recognisable state, I began to share it with grandpa. Through very punctual reunions and under very particular circumstances. He has vegetative days, which are perfect for these musicalized submissive sessions.
Spellcasting through stillness, sound and frequency. Eerie gratification. This “ritual” has just begun to properly turn both of us into non-thinking agents when managing a particular musical subgenre, as unknown to both of us as it can be. Online, it receives a lot of names (had to look it up), but for practical purposes, tends to be referred to as HexD.
Music(k) by the masses (any online persona acts as part of an active data mass), for non-massive occurrences. For (self)-divestment processes. For organic intervention over artificial becoming. For spaces of cosmopolitan intimacy.
No entertainment or curious ambitions satisfied here. This is reptilian club music. For knife-fighting cherubs. For pretty boys and undead girls. For a girl and his grandpa dying. Sigil invocation lifestyle type shit. Some active form of The Art against the axis from the good ol’ world citizen, could be said.
HexD, also known as hexcore, crushed trap, surge, vamp or simply hex, is a subgenre of internet music, based not only on the ever-changing accessibility given by cyberspace in terms of data/information, but on the ability to adjacently intervene on this data flux; the manipulation of frequencies, (post) production, mastering and digital image end up constituting HexD and what-it-is, rather than the musical composition aspect itself. It’s rather a proto-mystical style to approach sound-based interaction processes than a musical subgenre. A style full of artificial humans and very organic platforms, softwares, machines, e-stethics and SoundCloud profiles allowing it to bloom. Internet-driven music, for the nonhuman, like an ever-changing ec(k)osystem for fantasies. Divine, like magic(k).
Stylistically, it can be traced back onto horrorcore and 90’s Memphis rap (often referred to as phonk), with its grimy flows, lo-fi production and gloomy aesthetics, as well as to the ATL hip-hop sounds and the ‘bling era’ from the beginning of 2000s. Both of these branches, later revised by the likes of the “Soundcloud rap” and Drill music scenes from the 2010s, have gotten a revival, taking off as dominant (thus, profitable) genres within the music industry of our current moment, the cosmopolitan one.
This offshoot is also reflected on the way it is approached: the ineludible sampling process, now converted onto a key-piece for music-making, takes a substantial position over “influence” when it comes to positively-oriented cybernetic composition processes, such as those entirely mediated by a computer and a DAW of some type, putting up stuff together for some social-media music platform like Soundcloud, Bandcamp or DatPiff. Stoned to death in front of your computer. Probably wanting to kill yourself. Yet, not-doing it. Not-thinking. Just makin’ fire beats. Cosmopolitan intimacy. Disjointment rituals.
Phonk-revival and Drill projects in the likes of Rvider Klvn , Bones or Chief Keef, end up drifting the Three Six Mafia-type flows and R&B explorations onto the realms of trap, emo-rap and proto-vamp works, collisioning in their leaning towards post-production and odd sonic manipulation. Some examples of this can be found on the works by Goth Money Records, the Working On Dying “tread” mixes, early GothBoiClique and the works of SpaceGhostPurrp, also a member of Rvider Klvn.
Continuing with its stylistic traits, hexD is akin to a series of gimmicks within the experimental hip-hop umbrella of the last 30 years: the oddball-type of flow and freestyle coming from the likes of Viper the Rapper, Ol’ Dirty Bastard, cloudDEAD or ZeeloperZ, to name a few ‘deep cut’ names.
It is also deeply linked with the aggressive use of sound tags, looping and elaborate soundscaping in order to structure traditionally-built songs without the traditional instrumentation framework for most of modern music in the Imperial West, if we take into consideration bands like Death Grips, clipping. or the different artists released by the Deathbomb Arc label throughout the years.
Whether as a pun or a deeply serious statement, hexD’ arcane-like tags, productions and quirks (et.al. bitcrushing, oversaturation, “back-of-the-club” type mixing, unorthodox chopps and sampling, most songs don’t last up to 3 mins, detuning, pitch-altered vocals, you name it) are not only a casual music-industry phenomena, rather than a fully chaotic conclusion for a series of up-and-coming (non)productive outlets emerged from the cracks by a fringing impulse on the creative side of music(k)-making and ambitions, without compromising the productive/financial side of it. Plural, non-hierarchical. Most of the peeps making this shit may not actually even exist under ‘offline’ conditions. The type of anonymity which allows hex music to positively conduct energetical nonlinear processes, with or without heat-driven agencies intervening onto it. There’s always something ‘else’ within any hex project, with or without sound conveying it.
Musically speaking, hex music takes on with the traditionally secular effects of fringy music given the economic framework of art-making on and for the “pop cultural industry”, one pretty much centered and commanded from the economic coordinates of the Global North.
When talking about 70s experimental English music and forwardly, this can be grasped through certain specific examples: the cultural repercussion of the works by Genesis-Breyer P. Orridge and its becoming onto Throbbing Gristle, Psychic TV and its own anonymous magickal agency, the TOPY tribe; the “hauntology era” of music within the likes of the Ghost Box Records label and its deeply ambiguous links with the history of radio archive and broadcasting production of the 20th century, as some sort of cognitive-preservation effect given the technological possibilities of the post-war dominant regimes, now revised by post-y2k technological production and economy. Hauntology music would then get to be a template for yet another stage of artificially-driven music with tribal-like effects on the population recurring to it, also deeply intertwined with the digital-era leaning on internet-based music vía sampling and dummy data accessibility, typically referred to as vaporwave.
Once a vaguely ironic musical outtake given the hipster-era outbreak of the 2010s, now a serious musical enterprise, vaporwave works as a subgenre of electronic music way more remarkable by its aesthetic and stylistic choices than by some level of legitimacy over the sound work connected to it. Through a ‘sample-based ethos’ and a fair share of internet mysticism surrounding not just the genre’s fandom, but the sound-makers themselves involved, vaporwave marks a blueprint under what we could now categorize as “Web 3.0-driven pop culture”. It is exactly this becoming of vaporwave from publicly-determined jokery to a sudden aesthetic template for the globalized world, a formula mechanically hijacked from the media industry and then recuperated vía the ever-growing emergence of social-media internet as an unilateral way to achieve cosmopolitan intimacy, from an evidently utilitarian scope on which it is taken and offered as a mere commodity, of course.
Whether talking about cloud rap and its subsequent ‘sadboys’ movement, the works put out by the PC Music label -now known as “hyperpop”– operating as the new “music for alt kids” or, for the sake of reminiscence, 2000s mall emo phenomena, “scene world” and Insane Clown Posse’s juggalo community, fringe-music has always worked as a catalyst for artificially-mediated intimacy conceived for the sake of outcast youth-culture, a duty also entailed by HexD music. Even more so, if the gap of intentionality between hexD and the music-based communities described above is taken into consideration, whereas the former follow the entertainment-lane, the latter takes the spellcasting-one, with the difference of being paradoxically superseded by the social-media engine, yet not determined by it. A genre full of mainstream influence, without a single “mainstream” artist as such.
If there’s an internet musical community fundamentally close to what hexD entails, it is definitely the one attributed to the Bitch Mob Task Force, later known as “BasedWorld”, a field of experimentation and think-thank for ‘based music’, mythos and everything concerning the online/offline microcosm surrounding Oakland rapper, Lil B.
Although BasedWorld tended to be perceived as a softcore trolling center dispersed around Facebook groups and Reddit posts for underage kids trying to dig hood-rap vibes, there’s a breaking point on which the work conceived and reached by certain ‘based’ musicians (Soulja Boy, Cartier God and Lil B himself) started to repercute the cosmopolitan music business through an unapologetic display of the based-ethos on radical acceptance and authenticity given to an individual by their particular commitment with creative outlets, whether online or offline. Music-making, gazing at the moon, barking at the cops, casting spells, creating cybercults, moderating internet chat groups, being “extremely online”, low-key joie de vivre, all of these worthless ways of engaging with the ‘good ol’ citizen’ lifestyle embraced by a telos of vitality, fully conducted by the energy-channels of “the BASEDGOD”, and its worldwide devouts. This all sounds like a bunch of retarded neet-debouchery, and probably it is.
Regardless, its bound with ‘hexing’ both as a current expression for magickal-practicing and a musical genre couldn’t be more materially evident: The way in which Cartier God, understood here as the common echelon between “based” and “hex” music, has silently proceeded to endure BasedWorld heritage through yet another aesthetic community of his own (#OceanGang), mostly through music-driven operations, but not limited at all by them. Executing collaborations of all sorts throughout the years, a lot of them with representatives from the tribe-like musical communities described above, Cartier God remains keen to this mystical, yet exoteric, way of conceiving spaces for not-thinking via musick production, conceiving meta-concepts (he invented #DRIP, y’kno) or toy-making, practices evidently underlying the same existence of HexD itself. On his own words, he’s the first member invited to join seminal hex enterprise #ReptilianClubBoyz, besides their founding members, Hi-C and Diamondsonmydick.
This is when it becomes necessary to outline one more aspect on which hexD fully approaches our original discussion, an unapologetic one. An oppositional view (to say, a binary one) does not successfully compel the different issues emerged by the absolutist simulation of cosmopolitan welfare by globalization and cybernetization, even when its grounds seem so fragile and vain. Even less so if we talk about confronting these issues from a nonlinear position of ontological existence (of conceiving reality) and epistemological exercise (ways to grasp such reality). Like nonproductive ones, for example. Fuck /<</work, we wanna/> live.
Unapologetically, hex music strives on this typically apophatic view of magickal heritage and orders through the West, while holding a sincretic relationship with the methodical approach of more “counter-active” positioners. Some sort of institutionalized sharing-platform (all of this wouldn’t be happening as it is if it weren’t by “Web 3.0 pop-culture” and the social-media internet, as such) cemented on esoteric imperialist traditions. Like living a free-source fantasy under a trademarked lifestyle, a colorful way of putting into words the misery-inducing factor demanded under any cyber-positive/accelerationist framework for civil-based societies.
Taking all of this into consideration, a cool way of getting oneself induced onto the realms of hexD could be through a non-musical scope, which is to say, through the classification commonly given to the three main branches of magickal thinking on the Imperial West: Ceremonial Magick, Wicca and Messianism. For the sake of this writing (and our minds), we can clust the latter ones onto a single category, that one of pedestrian magick, meaning religion, and add a third one instead, in reference to the ‘non-hierarchical’ responses to these magickal taxonomies, all the way into the cibernetic era: the pluralist, free-source one, the branch of chaos.
This is also the classification applied to the three different encounters for cosmopolitan intimacy set up with grandpa, on which hexcore was obligately and randomly listened by our bodies, on an attempt for conducted (yet, by no particular conducting entity outside of sound) “accursed sharing”, to say it in a bataillean way.
A common exploration of energetic processes and mutualism. Over energy-excess agents and vanishing ones. Over a throbbing mind and a fading one, with or without thinking, but under total willingness. Grandpa’s not dead, just dying. And I want to share it with him, even if the elder meatspace perishes. Youth (and its ‘culture’) is rarely subdued by old culture, at least not from a cosmopolitan perspective on production, economy or recreation. That wouldn’t be profitable. Nor cool. But we’re boring vessels (our)selves, listening to internet-driven music under offline regimes, for non-meatspace occurrences. The mind starts to roam.
Sharing, intimacy and energy-driven exchanges are three of the main elements constituting the practice of hexD, aspects also correspondent to George Bataille’s “general economy” of wasteful/excessive/nonproductive processes under a post-war regime. And although the ground hex agents and the meatspace writing this haven’t encountered the harsh conditions of active hot-war nor post-war regimes (yet), the determinations of everything relating my grandpa’s current existence, hex music or the energy-sharing rituals described above are akin to the political economy found in Bataille’s work. That which openly ties fantasy and linearity/normality as equally-ponderant economic fields for anthropic development throughout existence.
The hexing sessions shared with grandpa can be read as disgregations from the traditionally “accursed (type of) sharing” proper to the cosmopolitan productive regimes, with its structural ties extended through familial bonds, social legitimacy and energetic consumption, whether conducted or frantic. Commodified or excessive. “A curse obviously weighs on human life insofar as it does not have the strength to control a vertiginous movement. It must be stated as a principle, without hesitation, that the lifting of such a curse depends on man and only on man. But it cannot be lifted if the movement from which it emanates does not appear clearly in consciousness.” (Bataille, 1980; pgs. 40-41)
Both grandpa and I have looked directly into each other’s eyes, for the last three days, at different time rates and consecutively, just before the setting sun, after the moon is down, when lights go up. Like a way of confessing everything said and thought. Not thought or made during the course of our shared existences, but rather at moments when one existed without the other.
The references made throughout this writing entail a classification which commonly works as a ritual scheme for ‘vertiginously conducted moments and apparitions in consciousness’ as for widely approaching the internet-based meta-genre of music(k) known as hexD.
HEXJNG SXXSH NO. I
HEXD TYPE SELECTED:
Ceremonial Hexing / E-Gnostikwvvxx
Ceremonial hexD, in reference to the branch of occultism correspondent to long ancient orders tied to Neoplatonic revisionism and monarchic character deeply rooted on the Middle Age and its base conceptions of Unity, Transcendence and Esotericism, foundations for the development of modern philosophy and the economico-political structures tied to the globalist ambitions embodied and executed by European empires. The main beholder of this particular type of hexing nowadays goes by the name of Yabujin.
In the same vein as Yung Lean’s Sad Boys, Bladee’s Drain Gang, Cartier God’s OceanWorld within Lil B’s own BasedWorld, Yabujin (aka DJ GYROTTA ZAO, Lamianaga, Naga, ะtailandietis85ะ) is an internet-driven entity dedicated to fantasy and lore-creation, conducting these aims through ambitious audiovisual pursuits, instrumental anonymity and a huge take on flash-point-and-click-games-type plotlines as a marketing axis.
Geographically hailing from Lithuania, digitally from North Korea, actually from nowhere, this entity has been producing shit for cyberspace since, at least, 2016, putting a realm up from the ground, piece by piece, year by year, bit by bit, fan by fan. A field successfully and entirely dedicated to the active diluting of frontiers between fantasy and reality under a cosmopolitan regime. Whether it be an autonomous process or a given one by the regime itself, that we do not know.
The diluting process is reflected in the way one can channel this energetic/negentropic source of energy onto current states for sense-driven relationships, lifestyles and economies one partakes in. ‘Cursed music’ as a de-cursing tool, or something like that.
Oscillating between 2007’s jumpstyle EDM, anime-flash soundtracks, phonk and modern dream pop, Yabujin delivers a distinct type of hex music, one which is almost exclusively embodied by their work. The way on which Ceremonial hexD executes demands a realm of his own to develop, to emerge. In Yabujin’s case, this place has already been built and baptized: Azeroy. Both grandpa and I have opened our doors, our meatspaces, to its mysteries. And what was once called a home, a shelter, a place for welfare, has subtly turned into a vanishing point for every single breath-based being under this roof, at least metaphorically. Enough oxygen to share, not to talk. Grandpa just listens, and moans. I see him, and groan. Grandma left subtlety and without further notice while the spellcasting took place. I start to remember.
There was this one time, I was 10 years old and went to grandpa’s house, back then, located in a cold and far-away city, nonetheless pretty acute with the civilian lifestyle of urbanite cosmopoli. There are things you don’t get to live long enough to watch them die. But sometimes, at least, you get a glimpse of the decomposing process. During this trip, most of intentions and/or memories are suppressed, excepting the cybernetically-driven ones. After whatever joyful, rewarding and meatspace activity took place, I went back home with them.
Once in the house, a 64-bit emulator which worked as a bootleg version of a SNES became a gate for companionship, for an intimate moment. It was called a “PolyStation”. Chinese invention. Very “third-wordly”, culturally speaking. Fantasy within misery, through digital emulation. I sit and play, and think, “grandma is cool, grandpa is cool. They have this.” I recall this as a moment of thankfulness, deeply resonating when listening to Yabu’s phaser-fueled verses:
“If you wanna die baby I can be the killer
It’s that holy night, playing Tekken in the winter
Cross on my neck, even though I am a sinner
Diamonds in my bag, holy night, yeah I’m on it
Angel on my heart, but a demon if you really wanted
Hate is all they have, Azeroy forever
Angels holdin’ swords, always here in the aether…”
Around half an hour into the hexing sesh, grandpa fell asleep. It was a sign to call it quits, at least for the day. This all happened while the track “Renegade” was still playing. The sharing ritual was not mutual, at least for today.
(Update/Hunch: By the time this writing is released, Azeroy gates have been suspended, and most of Yabujin’s work has been deleted from social media platforms. You can find most of their archive files through this link over here).
HEXJNG SXXSH NO. II
HEXD TYPE SELECTED:
Pedestrian Hexing / HexD Pop
This particular type of hexing may be the only one with an endurance directly related to the settlements of a secular economy, most commonly reflected onto cosmopolitan circumstances of livelihood, institutionalization and direct co-existence. Sharing the static/spectational nature of historically pedestrian overviews over the divine (e.g. Wicca and Religion), this branch of hexD can be understood as the “pop” manifestation coming from this spellcasting/music(k)al spectrum. Religion, as any “general” economic process, which is to say, as a prevailing energy-consuming institution through Imperial history, needs to operate always in favor of popular demand (the interests of the masses) over minoritarian transcendence (the prevalence of any particular idea of god). Also from a Bataillean perspective, this “general” conditioning on human practices keen with the non-human (which is to say, the divine) is also reflected on Wicca and its 21st century “pop” revivalism (e.g e-astrology, cottagecore aesthetics, among others), if we consider the restrains within these practices related to astronomical positionings, seasons change, natural phenomena or even availability of certain specific objects and spaces (temples). This “staticness” is blatantly assimilated into globalist expansionism through the 20th and 21st century in the form of post-war welfare states, states under which these same practices end up becoming (re)produced from a rather atheist and deterministic position towards ecosystemic conditions, resource distribution and linear-driven maximalism as consumption. After all, what does a prescient connection with Nature, elements and “sense-driven hypnosis” means, amidst a civil reality constituted by pop culture and climate change as milestones, almost exclusively available (and demanded) at the cost of unidirectional consumption and distribution of natural resources and secularized (but accelerated) cryptid exploitation. This is the context under which HexD Pop emerges. The main representatives of this hexD branch can be remitted to the musical enterprise once known as the Reptilian Club Boyz.
As Jameson Orvis accurately points out: “For the generation coming of age today, the early internet of the mid 2000s – glittery MySpace Blingee graphics, Neopets, Geocities, anime profile pictures – is a faintly remembered but romantic past. In the popular imagination, it is remembered as a time when the internet was primarily a platform for self-expression and discovery rather than capitalist exploitation. Nostalgia for the mid-aughts has always been present in cloud rap to an extent – Lil B partly got his start by posting mixtapes on MySpace – but is increasingly becoming a driving force in popular music. 100 gecs’s eardrum-rupturing hyperpop mallcore rap represents the first blending of hip-hop and 2000s pop nostalgia to gain mainstream recognition. And it’s just a taste of what’s to come, with acts like osquinn, David Shawty, SEBii, and the NOVAGANG collective making waves on SoundCloud with a similarly distorted blend of pop nostalgia and rap. But nowhere is the synthesis of early internet nostalgia and hip hop, especially SpaceGhostPurrp’s brand of demonic cloud rap, more perfect than the music of Reptilian Club Boyz.” (Passion of the Weiss, 2019)
The group, once formed by Hi-C, Diamondsonmydick, Stunny, Shane Clay, Cartier God, LazyGod, Marjorie W.C. Sinclair, among a shit ton of other soundcloud avi’s, has become the “mainstream” referent when talking about hex music and its evolution onto formal arenas discursively driven by non-magickal factors, such as the hustling ones. This can be seen as the most “music-leaned” branch within hexD music as such. As with religion, HexD Pop also works as a finance-driven space for cosmopolitan intimacy given its passive position towards institutional and apophatic legitimacy. Tax-free churches as a human right. Pop music for the masses. A once “uncanny” musical force once manifested: “music has the right to children”. Not so sure about that.
As with most negative spaces of connivance between the human and non-human, things need to be said in order to happen. When talking about spellcasting, not everything said is necessarily happening, nor will happen. Volition is not a linguistic property, and magic(k) is more like a field than a language. Nevertheless, this pedestrian and announcing approach to it has been the main motif for some of the most innovative musical efforts of the last decade, yet continuing in some shape or form with the legacy of “based music” and its ethos of radical acceptance through creative outlets. Reptilian club music is, nonetheless, magic(k)al paraphernalia in the form of trap-braggin’. Shameless, yet intense. Vulgar, yet encrypted. You just have to count how many times Hi-C and DOMD decide to rap about casting spells, sucking demon blood, avoiding material reality through pretty boy hideouts and having a vampire lifestyle, whatever all of this means.
Entailing this “pop” spectrum and its concordance with the exacerbated necessities under contemporary consumption regimes, this hex style has been fairly shared and emulated already by a bunch of other artists from outside of the “reptilian club” umbrella, adding their particular outlooks and reference points, yet continuing with the “family-friendly” (which is to say, pop) type of spellcasting. Some examples of it can be found on Canada’s meat computer, Poland’s nosgov, Venezuela’s Underaiki, and a couple of Global North projects such as Mokshadripp, BEG! and the collective efforts of Drixxo Lords and 4000witches. Directly assuming the more musical aspects influencing hex, the mix of Goth Money Records seapunk beats, hyperpop and other branches of more guitar-driven music (like emo, surf rock and twee pop) are directly present on the work made by these agents, always from anonymity, yet on a lane cemented by public fandom as a necessity. The road to success, y’kno.
This hexing sesh was held prior to yet another full moon. Once again, the body helds up onto a window, gazing at the lights. This time not coming from police cars, just beautiful stars. They were beautiful. This session was the longest of ‘em all, with moments of actual excitement (or at least, response) from grandpa. At this point, he’s not even speaking to me due to illness, he has just slowly returned to being a daily jackass. At least, he smiles and stuff. I mean, if that’s a sign of “getting healthier”, then I pass on health, at least the publicly measured one.
After one hour of hexD pop, both of our bodies went to sleep. The house remained empty, not a home anymore. Vestiges from the previous practice. Or maybe from a lifetime between grandpa and grandma, already shattered. One in which luckily, I don’t take that much part, neither chronologically nor intimately.
This second hexing sesh failed at a hypnotic level, yet left me wishing for more questions, not necessarily with answers. Just like in religion and Wicca, that would take away all the fun. And hexD pop can lack a lot of different layers, but the amusing one is not one of them. This shit is hella fun.
HEXJNG SXXSH NO. III
HEXD TYPE SELECTED:
It is deep in the night, and the mind roams. The body shivers. Insecurity tends to be a double-edged sword, both linked with an apophatic vulnerability and an apparently positive outlet for intimacy. Whether barking, gazing, listening or conducting any sensory tool onto non-human planes of action, one may encounter (mostly with/out intention, because that’s how it rolls) chaotic fields of magickal potency. This type of field tends to be repealed by thinking/alert states of the mind linked with the insecurity spectrum, which is to say analogically, the same position of Sigilkore within the hex spectrum. From the three aforementioned, this is the only ‘hexD lane’ on which musicianship goes after discipline. ‘Mystical discipline’, one could say. Out of the three, this is also the most inaccessible, musically speaking, from a pedestrian and ‘popular’ overview. Also from the three branches, this is the only one with a mainstream representative on its ranks (4jay aka Axxturel has already been signed by an Atlantic Records’ sublabel).
Sigilkore is also the only type of hex out of the ones mentioned which does not partake nor compromises its magickal purposes; this, without recurring to “occulting” strategies over already released rituals/energy nor succumbing onto the static demands of a general population hyped on “new weird dark crushed trap shit”. Nearly as egoist as chaotical. Not to mention, this is the only hexD type not exclusively dedicated to music(k)al production.
The main exponents for this sub-sub genre can be traced back to the works by the now defunct art collective, Jewelxxet, most prominently and posthumously continued by the endeavors held via some of its ex-members: Axxturel aka lucifer, baddcitizen aka maralith, Dj Slur aka satan, 2Shanez, Majin Blxxdy, Xhris2eazy and sellasouls.
Following some Kia-driven meditation tendencies, from death postures to manifestations, lots of Sigilkore “musicians” lean to melodic systems and closed-source softwares (from FL Studio to Ableton, all licensed) as publics outlets for nonpublic matters, such as demonic invocations, chaos-based rituals or straight up sacrifice and murder.
As insecurity dissolves, detachment arises, silence stops its unwinding as an adversary and starts becoming keener, closer, familiar. I realize I’ve been alone in this process, this sharing process. This whole time, going nowhere, armed with nothing. Just with a body, sharing other bodies. Not looking for ideas, but senses. And while grandpa remembered how to reclaim the enterprise over his own senile flesh while doing things like escaping his own house, -not a home, anymore- he kind of remembered me what this is all about: absolutely nothing. Magic(k) shared itself with me, not the other way around. And grandpa does not even count as a sack of ideas, he’s exactly what I never knew was needed: a mere meatspace. A catalyst. And insecurities are dissolved enough to know I’ll need him, at least, one more time.
On this last attempt for non-thinking cosmopolitan intimacy, the answer was subtle, quick and unexpected, a true moment of shared vulnerability. Grandpa opened his lips and talked to me, after almost 2 years, and said: “I do not like this. I want to leave”. He wasn’t lying, most people in that house wanted that. Grandma achieved it: prior to this hexing session, she grabbed a bag filled with clothes and creams, left and never looked back.
This encounter didn’t last long. At around the 20 minute mark, grandpa took his word seriously, untied himself, and went to sleep. Who knows for how long, he left me alone with (our) intimacy listening to slur’s “ why would I lie ”, and didn’t care that much about staying there after that sigilkore gnosis state vanished. It was around midnight when I closed that door, and never looked back. At my grandpa, at the idea of a ‘home’, at the idea of “points with no return”. It is always possible to return to the same fucking bullshit. Do (not) underestimate that. Why would I lie?
It is Thursday the 26th, and by the time this piece has concluded, most of the groups and/or collectives mentioned on it have dissoluted, and most of things which seemed important have stopped making sense and turned on to publicly influenced processes at a personal level of existence, which is to say, a negative influence. Apophatic. Like hexD music, magic(k)al gateways under imperial traditions, welfare states. In the end, every space identified as one for ‘cosmopolitan intimacy’, meant and turned into absolutely nothing. But hey, that’s what magic is for, right?
“I might turn my wrists into fillet, hide it with rubber bands”, thoughts wander.
“Dismiss yourself”, the mind hisses…
Once again, a full moon is on
The body left,
And went back to sleep.
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Carrol, P. (1987). Liber Null & Psychonaut. Samuel Weiser Inc.
The Catholic Bible.