“They were marching like fugitives around the city. They were hiding yet they didn’t know what was after them. They were in murky depths in a city that now spread out like a swamp. L-Bomb would sometimes close her right eye to see more clearly by bringing an uncoupled luxuriance to her visioning. They threaded themselves in & out of streets, roads, parks, broadways, markets, shopping malls, squares without ever being individual entities. They suffered the abundance of a kind of inexhaustible intermediate state. They were like animals of oblivion, & this was a literal fact too as all ancestors end up with apes & their ancestors, ultimately the stars. They were like creatures rooting around, anyone watching would assume there was some sort of fickleness in play as they would suddenly swing round & make off in a completely new direction to the one they had been following, as if thoughts were being freshly corrupted & their despair a butterfly.”
PALOMARES BOMB GRRLS marks the return of the legendary Neo-Attack! author JOHNNY PULP.
“Palomare Bomb Grrls is so OTT it could only have been written by Johnny Pulp or me! If you’ve been dreaming of a roller coaster ride thru the dark side of a sick mind with absolutely no redeeming features, this is the book for you. If you’re a literary bore welcome to your worst nightmare!” STEWART HOME, author of Red London
“Palomares Bomb Grrls achieves a radical pornolization of critical & social theory for an era in which every news cycle inflates an already M.A.D. number of political “broken arrows.” LOUIS ARMAND, author of The Combinations
Occupying “the dangerous borderland of grotesque comedy, sexual liberation and vertiginous horror,” Attack! Books was founded on the premise that “contemporary Literature (as index of middle-class culture) could be short-circuited with contemporary tabloid writing (as index of working-class culture) to produce something which would upset all of the social conventions surrounding the two.” Self-consciously adopting the stance of a “pop-cultural avant-garde” in the tradition of Swift and Sade, Dada and Burroughs, Attack! Books aimed at subverting what Richard Marshall, writing in 3:AM Magazine, called “Rupert Murdoch’s efficient hegemonic tabloid machine,” by mimicking the “tabloid gothic style in a gloriously brutalising, cranked-up extreme inversion” infused with “cartoon violence and sex” in order to affect a “splenetic satire” and “sustained scorn” of “radical dissenting” intent. According to Marshall, Attack! Books constituted a two-pronged cultural offensive, aimed both at the “boring self-regarding prose” of the British literary Establishment – which had sought to monopolise the discourse on contemporary literary culture “to the exclusion of anything else and the exclusion of anyone else” and in whom it sought to provoke “anguish and disgust” – and at the “right-wing tabloid agenda” which, by “mastering the prurient moment” had usurped the expression of a popular consciousness, “relating the lurid details of the murder or rape case in order to put across their wobbly moralism that murder and rape are terrible and not entertaining.” Consequently, it was the aim of Attack! Books to “tap into a popularist, inclusive and democratic context that rudely dissents from the powers that be…” an “insolent laughter,” as Marshall says, “of the angry and the powerless…”
New additions to the franchise eventually made its way before the public under the title Dirty Manga Bastards, by the pseudonymous “Johnny Pulp” – one of eleven books authored by him (including Cancer Boy, Postcards of the Hanging and The Millennium GM Killer Mutant Lesbian Baby Plague) in a binge of attempted institutional sabotage and printed simultaneously under Randolph Carter’s Neo-Attack imprint in 2005. The new series – part continuity, part homage to what Marshall described in his obituary to Wells (who died of cancer in 2009) as “a publishing venture that is still… one of the most daring and truly radical of its kind” – was a bizarro mash-up of post-apocalyptic noir, pulp action comics, cyberpunk, transgender porn and continental philosophy (Johnny Pulp’s “filthied-up” review of Stewart Home’s Defiant Pose – comprising chapter 16-17 of the book: “Madame Atamos Sheds Her Skin” – is punctuated with random appearances by “the Jean Paul Sartre Mayhem Monster,” “the Albert Camus Car Crash Killer,” “the Roland Barthes Blitzkrieg Beast,” “the manically depressed Louis Althusser Strangling Raptor Creature,” “the incredibly complex and convoluting Jacques Lacan Ringmaster Killer Psycho Hysteric,” and “the Nietzschean House Of Whipcord Foucault Fuck Machine”).
The Neo-Attack project, in common with its predecessor, only accedes to being “Literature” in ways similar to Home’s claim to being an “Artist” and “Writer” – which is only insofar, as Mark Williams says, that all three terms are thereby exposed as “public demonstrations of the inevitability of reproducing one’s own alienation under capital and therefore show forth the contradictions which affect us all.” Like Williams’s term “subliterature,” the labels Home’s work has been least inclined to reject are anti-novel and anti-art: the assault on reactionary culture and the “negation of present social conditions,” in Williams’s view, being “key to all his writing.” What all of these subliteratures share, however, is an additional scepticism towards the sort of liberational narratives lazily associated with historical avant-gardes, whose “socially-transformative aspirations” are boiled down to the sort of naïve soundbite “dialectics” of “opposition and transcendence” that can fill a column-inch of catalogue space in the latest Taschen Art Now. As Jack Sargeant writes in his recent study of underground film: “The notion of an authentic moment realised in transgression would render such actions beholden truth” – for which reason neither Home, Wells nor Marshall “depict nor search” for any such “truth.” Instead, where they arrive is at “the Wittgensteinian place where there is nothing that can be said and all that is left is silence… No amount of irony can redeem it, and so it is redeemed!” LOUIS ARMAND, “Lumpenproletariat. Writing Attack/Antisystem/Subliterature” (3AM magazine)
PALOMARES BOMB GRRLS will be available in print in a limited edition at the London Small Publishers Fair, 11am-7pm, 9-10 November, Conway Hall, Red Lion Sq., & will be launched in London with Stewart Home, Louis Armand & Richard Marshall on November 10 at a location yet to be disclosed.
“Like a Lacanian Tolkien horror shot by Peter Jackson!”