Autoluminescent Rowland S Howard Dvd
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Autoluminescent Rowland S Howard Dvd

Lowenstein Richard, Genevieve McGuckin, Nick Cave, Mick Harvey, J.P. Shilo

If you make something that is so magical, so unique you will pay the price… it’s the Devil s bargain.

Lydia Lunch Rowland S. Howard appeared on the Melbourne punk scene, a phantom from Kafkaesque Prague, an otherworldly aristocrat. The demonic fury of his guitar shot him directly into the imagination of a generation. Behind the enigmatic man was an artful persona, a sardonic wit and a gut wrenching lyricist. His signature sound catalysed The Boys Next Door into the epic The Birthday Party , the seminal band of the post punk era.

With These Immortal Souls and collaborations alongside Lydia Lunch, Nikki Sudden, his striking solo work Teenage Snuff Film and Pop Crimes, Rowland S. Howard produced a plethora of qualified cult classic songs that echo throughout the ages. Known and loved for the timeless raw truth, beauty and wit of his words and sound, in an age of makeovers, Rowland S. Howard never sold out.

Containing a selection of moving interviews with Rowland S. Howard, Nick Cave, Wim Wenders, Mick Harvey, Lydia Lunch, Henry Rollins , Thurston Moore, Bobby Gillespie, Adalita among others and rare footage, AUTOLUMINESCENT traces the life of Roland S. Howard, as words and images etch light into what has always been the mysterious dark.


The late Rowland S. Howard, elegant gloom poet of Melbourne’s early post-punk scene, is given worthy valediction in this illuminating documentary. So fully transformed was Nick Cave’s band of high-school noise-makers, The Boys Next Door, by the introduction of Howard’s electric fretboarding that they were compelled to rebrand as The Birthday Party. That band’s supernovic legacy is now the stuff of infamy. For Howard, These Immortal Souls followed, where he claimed his rightful spot as a frontman, along with two seminal solo albums in Teenage Snuff Film and Pop Crimes. A cast of alt-cultural luminaries – including Cave, Wim Wenders, Lydia Lunch and Henry Rollins – are on hand here to intone their honour. But what really distinguishes Autoluminescent from other commemorative rock docs is the living presence of Howard himself – fortunately, production was well underway at the time of his death from liver cancer at age 50 in late 2009. Essential viewing.

gerard Gerard Elson works at Readings St Kilda.

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