Tees of the week: New merch for the Jacuzzi Boys and a classic Otto Von Schirach tee from his Oozing Bass Spasms album.

Best. Motorcycle. Helmet. Ever.

Unearthed this gem while cruising eBay for a new motorcycle helmet. Click the read more button for the money shot.

First single from the highly anticipated new album by Astronautalis, slated for release in September on Fake Four. With production duties by Alias (of Anticon fame), the song arrives as an evolution of the genre that both have played a part in shaping.

SR500 Custom Build - Humble Beginnings

To read the introduction to this build, click here.

As I’m already roughly four months into the bike build, there’s a bit of catching up to do. I’ll continue with that until I’ve reached the present, and as things are starting to get pretty fun, will do that as quickly as possible. For now I’ll pick back up where I left off in the introduction.

So I had a motorcycle. Yep, sure did. There it was, in the space I had made for it in my shop, looking every single day as old as it was. It was manufactured originally in 1978. I was manufactured in 1977. And here we were, 34 years later, brought together by fate and the idea that I somehow had any business restoring and customizing a motorcycle. This was going to be interesting.

The first week it was there I sat on it a lot. And showed it to anyone with a pulse and two working eyes. Some were impressed with my ambition, others had memories brought back from a time when these type of bikes were plentiful. Most of them believed I would be able to bring the bike back to life. I hoped they were right.

"Floating" by Jape, from their second studio album, The Monkeys in the Zoo Have More Fun Than Me.

Introduction to my Yamaha SR500 Custom Motorcycle Build

I can’t recall the exact moment when I decided to get a motorcycle. In a sense, although I had been toying with the idea of getting a bike, this one kinda found me. To this day, roughly halfway through my first bike build, I’ve never even ridden a motorcycle. But then again, riding them never had much to do with my interest in bikes anyways.

Like many others, my love for custom motorcycles began in the heyday of the Discovery Channel’s run of motorcycle themed TV programming. With the success of American Chopper (and the more build oriented but lesser well known Southern Chopper) leading to more in depth coverage of motorcycle culture through shows like The Great Biker Build Off (later becoming the Biker Build Off series), I was exposed to the artisans of the motorcycle world, and was quickly drawn into it. There was something fascinating about watching icons like Indian Larry, Matt Hotch, Chica, Billy Lane and others create these rideable pieces of art, and with the bad boy biker image to go along with it, there wasn’t much hope that any red-blooded American male would be able to resist. And they couldn’t.

If we become totally aware, we have an extraordinary energy. This energy of awareness is freedom.
 J. Krishnamurti


Interview: Dennis McKenna

Dennis McKenna

I consider myself fortunate to have grown up in the 90’s, with one of the main reasons being that psychedelics were so readily available. These compounds not only helped shape my perception of life as a youth, but also allowed an excellent framework for making the transition to the spiritual path in my late twenties. There was, as expected, an interesting debate in the comments section of this interview of which one of the comments (in response to someone who was questioning the validity of the psychedelic experience) pretty much summed up my personal outlook on psychedelics and what they have to offer us. I’ll quote it here unedited:

"It’s not that psychedelics provide access to a different kind of perception so much as they disrupt the normal priorities or filters you place upon your own perception. Consider your normal awareness as a filter of priorities - objects and people have place, function, and relevance. Under the influence of psychedelics, your normal realm of priorities becomes obliterated, allowing you to view experiences in a non-prioritized manner. In a simple sense, you see things as they "are"; however, you still carry some baggage with you, which will affect how you interpret the various color perceptions, geometric extrapolations, and ascriptions of life/movement to the inanimate. After significant experience with psychedelics, you should come to recognize your own resident filters which survive the dynamite blast a good hallucinogen provides. "