Eighteen’s ALL THAT’S LEFT dystopian spec fic cyborg series crosses streams with +HIRS+ queer grind thrash band as the first track of a remixes 10″ album coming out in the near future. Listen below.
Rahl was the first one through the door after it had been blown open, the rest of the crew splashing in just as they had planned out, reconned, practiced in barely lit alleyways. He kept expecting to hear Captain’s voice in his head doling out those level-headed directives as always, her cybercom indicator beating calmly onto his conscious perception. Instead it was the shrieks of the Progenitors and the hissing gas streams pissing their face melting neurotoxin plasma all over the room. It slopped all over the organic hierarchy farms, causing the shells to sizzle and combust a hot liquid splatter. All over, all over.
The cyberdocs were freaking out; their skin was crawling with the wrong kind of nanomachine interaction. One of them was crying, “Lord Jesus! God! Lord have mercy!” Rahl watched Braga descend upon the hysteric like an owl on fieldmice, his gun slung back, boot already dropping into the crying doc’s chest, yelling, “NO GODS AND NO MASTERS!”. Braga meant to crush organs.
Rahl forced himself to watch the brutality, unflinching. He felt like if this was to be their brightest moment, he should at least submit to the burn. And if they lived past the next two hours, he supposed he’d have all the time later to cry about it. Braga murdered the cyberdoc––the Progenitor, the dome people stupidly called him. Rahl realized he was crying now. These awful wretched people were being murdered. No gods, no masters, Braga had yelled?
Rahl watched another Progenitor clawing at his face as he suffocated on his own spewing bile. Their death throes looked so much like being hacked. They seethed, or withered. This one seethed. Rahl shot the man. They were all “men” here, cause the domes were still places where no one was ever held accountable––they called it “preserving the golden age.” Well, here was the bright flash of light, at long last.
They couldn’t just leave their chimera alone––they’d felt the need to rein them back in for destruction in the most classic of arrogant human motions. End the program. No more full conversion cyborgs. They were so fucking arrogant. They literally ruined everything, even themselves. Heaven was over now. No gods, no masters.
For more misanthropic queer grind music (much more intense than in this remix), it’s probably best to just run “+HIRS+” through your favorite search engine. Or you can go to their website here. For more zine-on-tape recordings of living in a post-binary dystopian reality, check out Eighteen’s work here. Featured image by Don McCullin of Northern Ireland, 1971.
This Saturday, OCT 27 at the Rotunda (4014 Walnut Street) is the 10th annual Philly Zine Fest.
Metropolarity resident cyborg, Maggie Eighteen, will be there with their post-binary dystopian zine, ALL THAT’S LEFT. They will also have audiobook cassettes, and patches & pins for cyborgs. Rumor has it there may even be particle physicist and Central High alum (260!) to answer your questions about dark matter and the Large Hadron Collider at CERN. Ooooh~
This event is FREE and ALL AGES. NOON to 5 PM.
“The annual fest showcases local artists and zinesters, as well as zine distros, bringing DIY, radical, whimsical, and artistic small press publications to the public. Ranging from bike repair to poetry to crafts, the Zine Fest is a great place to go to learn new things, connect with local writers, and get involved with creating new forms of accessible media.”
For more information, visit the Philly Zine Fest website here.
The following is an interview excerpt reproduced from Cluster Magazine (with permission) with Philly resident cyborg, Maggie Eighteen, author of All That’s Left. Originally posted March 30, 2012.
by Cluster Mag Editor-in-Chief Max Pearl.
Number Eighteen constructs a world where the distinctions between the technological and the organic appear absurd, where prosthetics and body-modification have made almost every body a cyborg.
All That’s Left is a sci-fi zine that follows a group of friends living borg lives in the hood, surviving as high-tech foot soldiers in the urban periphery while the ruling classes party it up in sequestered communities called ‘the domes.’ And borders between the technological and the organic are not the only permeable, shifting boundaries. Characters in this post-apocalyptic drama perform gender according to mood and immersive, web-based sex allows users to grow organs or lose them mid-act. It becomes clear that while All That’s Left is a sci-fi narrative, its pessimistic prophecies and its utopian dreams are in some ways real for us already. The wealth gap is fucked, global warming is here, and with the amount of time we spend attached to our smartphones, we’re pretty much already cyborgs.
The zine itself was printed on dumpstered paper dug out from around the Penn campus in West Philadelphia- ‘the domes,’ anyone? The stories themselves are also available in audio form on Soundcloud and Bandcamp.
Cluster Mag interviewed Eighteen about what it means to be part machine, whether we spend too much time on the internet, and when exactly sex is going to catch up with technology.
Cluster Mag: So in All That’s Left, you set the story in these peripheral, militarized slums controlled by gangs and armies of genderqueer cyborgs. What other narratives, genres, or bodies of work inspired and informed you in building this world?
Number Eighteen: Wow! Well, there are dozens of information flows that inform my fantasy dystopia, but in the zine I mention 1990s cyberpunk anime as being an inspiration. I feel like anyone who is a fan of Ghost in the Shell can find obvious influences in my stories. But also there are the worlds of GUNNM (Battle Angel Alita in the U.S.), Appleseed (another Masamune Shirow creation), and Akira (duh) that serve up such gorgeously detailed world settings, technological relationships, and dystopian states. I get frustrated when people—especially sci-fi fans—haven’t given those series the time of day. They’re classics of anime for a reason.
The visual sci-fi of the 80s, 90s, and early 00s (my formative years) are also deep with futurevision; They Live, The Big O, No Escape, Demolition Man, etc—these pulpy “low art” productions are passed over for their perceived campiness, and yet all these series are about power and the oppressed in dystopias of “terminal capitalism” and corporate domination by old straight white motherfuckers who still think their “hard work” is what got them to where they are today. What do you think the #Occupy shit and every other social justice movement is about right now? Humans are humans are humans, and motherfuckers say that money is god, that God founded this country, and that white is right. Fuck that. You know who every villainous motherfucker is in all these series always is? An old white corporate guy.
Eighteen will be reading at this month’s Laser Life OCT 19, along with other friends of METROPOLARITY: Ras Mashramani, Shane Jenkins, and Alex Smith, Laser Life’s founder and curator.