Rowland S. Howard Doc Moves Forward


The erstwhile Birthday
Party member who made six string violence part of our vocabulary. Denounced the
banana as an evil fruit, too…. A specialist, and a visionary. R.I.P.


By Fred Mills


Warning: if you were a fan of the late Australian guitarist
Rowland S. Howard, the six-minute video, below, just might break your heart. But
if the completed film for the Howard documentary Autoluminescent, lives up to the promise displayed in the trailer,
then there’s much to cheer as well.


The guitarist passed away a little less than a year ago, at
the age of 50 following a battle with liver cancer, on December 30, 2009, leaving
behind a storied legacy and discography that includes classic work with the
Boys Next Door/Birthday Party, Crime & the City Solution, These Immortal
Souls and Lydia Lunch. Read the BLURT obituary/tribute here – as I wrote
previously, he was a huge inspiration to me, and I feel fortunate to have met


Several months later word emerged about the documentary, along
with the trailer, which shows a brace of alternately visceral and poignant
clips and images (including a segment from the Wim Wenders film Wings of Desire along with testimonials
from the likes of Nick
Cave, Mick Harvey,
Thurston Moore, Henry Rollins, Nick Zinner and Thurston Moore. At the time,
word was that the then-in-production film was slated for an August release.
Then it apparently ran into funding issues and was potentially in limbo.


Now, though, the Pedestrian site is reporting that Australia’s Film Victoria has awarded some grant money to the
filmmakers, which is great news. Here’s hoping we’ll get to see the finished product
in the very near future.



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