Not China

“Dschinghis Khan” – A Eurovision disco tribute to Genghis Khan

The 2016 Eurovision Song Contest is upon us! As usual, expect an orgy of hideous stage attire and even worse music.
The format is simple yet tedious: Each European country sends an entry into the competition, and after an evening of improbable performances, the continent gets to vote on a winner.
Certain nations with languages unsuitable for pop music obviously have a much harder time reaching winning the contest; the Finnish are a case in point, only able to win when they are dressed up as heavy metal monsters.
But there were better times – in 1979, Germany’s entry was a teutonic disco exotica tribute to the greatest conqueror the world had ever know: Genghis Khan. (Youku link to video here.)

The lyrics, albeit of doubtful historical accuracy, cover a wide range of topics from the great Khan’s life: conquest (“Genghis rode to race with the steppe wind, with a thousand men”); sex (“he fathered seven children in one single night”); drinking (“let us get some vodka, for we are true Mongols”); and of course the pure joy of living (“HOOOH HAAAH HOOOH HAAAAH”).

Sadly, despite having a dancing Genghis Khan impersonator in an outfit somewhere between Star Trek and Taobao, the song only reached fourth place in the competition.

German disco was big at the time in Asia, and the song even spawned a Cantopop cover version called《成吉思汗》by George Lam 「林子祥」. If you’re ever in need of belting out the lyrics in a group setting, both the German and Chinese versions can be found in any well-stocked Shanghai karaoke parlour.

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Mind-expanding Richard Ayoade interview (and some Jean-Luc Godard interviews as well)

Director and comedian Richard Ayoade showed us the full potential of live television this week. Talking to Krishnan Guru-Murthy on Channel 4 News, Ayoade exposed the utter absurdity of the medium in an interview on par with anything Jean-Luc Godard ever gave. Channel 4 veteran Jon Snow (no relation to Ned Stark’s bastard) can be seen laughing uncontrollably as Ayoade exits the studio.

And here are some Jean-Luc Godard interviews thrown in for good measure:

Banksy Mural in Folkestone Defaced

I would normally not quote the Daily Mirror, but these are exceptional circumstances: “Banksy wall art vandalised with giant penis in overnight spray paint attack”. The work in question is “Art Buff”, a picture of a elderly woman looking at an empty plinth. This is what the mural looked like before:

And this is what it looks like now:

This is as conceptually convoluted as a Borges novel; some kind of contemporary art world version of a dream within a dream: before the mural was vandalised, the building owner had added a sheet of protective plastic sheeting to protect the work (how they knew it was Banksy in the first place remains unclear).