Gæoudjiparl Van Den Dobbelsteen lecture

February 1st, 2008

The utterly unique Gæoudjiparl Van Den Dobbelsteen has a lecture on Google Video that you need to take a look at.

I’ll assume you’re well on your public Danish television voyage by now. You’re witnessing a televised lecture presented by Goodiepal, a Danish electronic musician that enjoys some airplay on WFMU and is probably most widely know for blowing minds with his mechanical bird invention, and composing tones and melodies for consumer electronics companies.

You’ll see him keep his studio audience stupefied with a near hour-long discourse on: The Eurobot (as demonstrated by cardboard scenery cutouts and handmade balls of yarn), the assertion that Europeans don’t understand time, the idea of mirror points in music, the future of electronic music, and how to keep music scores hidden from artificial intelligence.

At first blush it all seems very whimsical but discursively sound but at about the twenty minute mark when he’s still playing with his little robot set and whistling the Eurobot score to himself, one can’t help but wonder if he’s putting us on. And yeah, you’ve got the simul-soundtrack cranked, so you’re on media-fuckery watch anyway.

What’s going on here, you ask? Thankfully, a mysterious poster to a web forum has left a few clues.

A user going by the name of “Gæoudjiparl EDUCATION” brought this video to my attention in the V/Vm Test Records web forums. He seems to share our feeling about the video that:

“…something is not quite what it appears to be…

Several indications of a hidden agenda are evident when investigating the program
more closely although the question of who is actually behind remains disguised. The following is an attempt to cast light on some of the dubious occurrences.”

Apparently, Goodiepal has been spiked with a hallucinogenic drug, allowed to prattle on far beyond the time normally allotted by this television program (true: you’ll see him gesture to the producers throughout the video), and may be mixed up in a situation akin to a scenario presented by a 1967 science fiction novel by Fredrich Pohl (pictured left).

Alright, alright, cute, cute. We get it. Goodiepal isn’t about to appear on television under the “phony” terms posited by modern television production studios. Rather than use his invitation to speak his mind directly, he serves up a quasi-didactic mixture of truths, lies, and pure babble.

Much of what he says in this video likely represents the very opposite of his belief (such as the suggestion that we allow computers to start performing our vocal compositions for us).

But dude, “culture jamming” in these modern times strikes a blow against a weakened opponent: mass culture and mass media. Willful obfuscation of earnest dialectics is a very proper move as far as much of our contemporary countercultures are concerned. But it doesn’t do shit to communicate higher ideals to the “uninformed masses.”

I think this is a ripe case of “co-option” anxiety. Co-option theory suggests that mere exposure of a subculture’s defining aesthetic or idealistic touchpoints threatens to weaken the bonds of is participants. This plots the forces of cultural good (say, young skinny white unmarried people living urban areas and reading small circulation magazines) against the sold-out ethos of corporations who want to use their culture to sell things to them (gasp!) and demands that cool kids not blow their cover.

Once I transcoded this whole thing out using my handy Goodipal media ring I actually liked the ideas very much. But I am the choir, aren’t I? Personally, I’m not buying the (meta)story any longer. (Oh, also: Your technique just got co-opted. Pwned!)



I have to say, we need more people like Van Den Dobbelsteen…and have always need more.

Leave a Reply

You must be logged in to post a comment.