The Burning Blade

Fireaxe Newsletter - edition 9.2

Feb 3, 2006

"The war games were unsuccessful at preventing the conflict
from escalating."
- an unnamed Air Force source, referring to a CIA
and DIA led simulation of the aftermath of an attack
on Iran's nuclear facilities

Things seem relatively stable now, but by the time that the next Burning Blade gets released the world could be a much different place. There are a number of things scheduled to happen around the end of March and they all seem to involve Iran. There is the referral of Iran to the U.N. security council, possible sanctions against that country, the threat of Israel bombing Iran if nothing is done, and the expressed support of an Israeli attack on Iran by the U.S. should it come to pass. Also near the end of March is when the new Iranian oil bourse is supposed to open, which would allow oil trades to be done in Euros instead of dollars, which, coincidentally is about the same time that the Federal Reserve has announced that it will stop reporting the M3 measure of the U.S. money supply. Big things are afoot, the question is how big.

Of course, the blogs are all aflutter about all sorts of things involving an attack on Iran. That's what they do best. They are not only more alarmist than the mainstream media, but they also strive to be more alarmist in ways that cater to those who no longer listen to the mainstream media, many for good reasons. This time however, the alarmist's calls seem well founded. It appears that Russia isn't going to stand idly by and allow the West to run roughshod all over yet another country with which it has diplomatic and financial ties. Russia has sold and delivered over a billion dollars worth of air defense systems to Iran and thus the days of the U.S. (or Israeli) aircraft flying over its enemies without fear and dropping bombs indiscriminately may be over. Furthermore, China needs Iran to supply its growing energy needs with both oil and natural gas and may not stand idly by either. Worse still is the idea that Shiites and other Muslim sympathizers in Iraq, Syria, Lebanon, the West Bank and Gaza, and elsewhere in the middle east might take violent exception to an attack on Iran and retaliate against U.S. and Israeli soldiers. Of course, people have always predicted that the middle east will explode if one more insult from the "Great Satan" is piled on to the region and those predictions have always been wrong. Still, it does seem awfully thick-headed to think that it will never happen and to keep poking away at the poor Muslims who never seem able to unite and fight back.

I could go on and on about how suicidal an attack on Iran may well be. It doesn't matter. Recent polls state that more than half of Americans have no problem with the U.S. bombing Iran and that is the only majority in the world that matters. As was the case with the attack on Iraq, the U.K. and Australia will join in the fun and the E.U. and several other countries hard up for U.S. loans will get dragged along for the ride. Majority opinion outside the U.S. is irrelevant, sad to say, so unless something changes between now and the end of March, plan to be watching more 24-hour war coverage (probably just a Kosovo-style air campaign, we have no soldiers to spare) on cable news in early April.

It doesn't matter that Iran doesn't actually have nuclear weapons, or that the much derided UN inspectors haven't found any proof of a nuclear weapons program (Iran is allowed by treaty to enrich uranium for power plants, which isn't quite the same thing). It doesn't matter because we Americans can imagine the Iranians buried deep inside some secret James Bond villain style fortress putting the finishing touches on a nuclear bomb and loading it onto a truck with Osama bin Laden at the wheel, who is ready to drive it all the way to Washington D.C. and blow it up. It doesn't matter that Iran has legitimate security concerns, seeing as how two of its neighbors, both rich in natural resources, incurred the wrath of the most powerful, and most energy dependent, nation in the world. Think of it this way, if you personally had millions of dollars buried in your basement and everyone in your town knew about it you'd probably go out and buy a few guns too, wouldn't you? But we Americans know that they're planning an attack. We believe that the threat of massive nuclear retaliation directed at Iran just isn't enough to discourage them from dropping a nuclear weapon on someone. We know all about those crazy Arabs, oops I mean crazy Persians. They're all fanatical suicide bombers who are liable to do anything for any reason. And so we have to stop them before they get anywhere close to being a threat. Thus, sadly, it's going to be bombs away.

What I just described explains public support for the idea, but it is hard to believe that the leaders of the free world, most of whom, unlike the public, have a good idea of what is going on, would make another poor decision like the invasion of Iraq. What would be their rationale for taking such a risk? This brings us to the subject of the proposed Iranian oil bourse. Not many people know what the bourse is, but it is the equivalent of a financial nuclear weapon. Currently, all trades for oil must be made in dollars in one of two markets, one in New York and one in London. If anyone wants to buy oil they have to exchange their currency for dollars, making it so that dollars are always in high demand. A Euro-based oil market would allow countries to buy and sell oil in Euros instead of dollars, potentially reducing the demand for dollars by billions per week while possibly making Euros the international currency of choice for even more purposes. Since no modern currencies are backed by anything of real value, like gold, their value is determined exclusively by supply and demand. Thus, if a lot of oil began to be traded in Euros instead of dollars, the dollar's value might be headed for the cellar.

Of course, a lot of people have been predicting the dollar's demise for more than a year now, Warren Buffet and Bill Gates to name two, and that potential catastrophe hasn't happened either. One reason why is that the Federal Reserve has been propping up the dollar by effectively buying U.S. treasury bonds (via repurchase agreements) which allows them to "print" up as many electronic dollars as are needed to keep the U.S. economy afloat. This also lets them control U.S. interest rates, which generally skyrocket when debt reaches extreme levels, which is the case in the U.S. today. However, everyone can see the extent of the Federal Reserve's manipulation of the markets since their bond purchases are recorded in the M3 measure of money, which has nearly doubled in the last seven years (from about $5.5 trillion to over $10 trillion), but after March we can only guess how much the Fed is controlling the markets, and investors don't like to guess when others know. If the Iranian oil bourse comes on line it could seriously rock an already shaky economic boat, potentially capsizing debt burdened nations, and forcing the Federal Reserve to make far more repurchase agreements than it wants anyone to know about. No one knows for sure what will happen, if anything, but the danger is very real.

The biggest problem with the Iranian oil bourse is that there's nothing illegal or wrong about it at all. It is inarguably economic fair play. Iran would be creating a competing market for a valued commodity which, according to economic theory, should benefit the consumers in the end. To hold it up as a reason for war would reveal capitalist democracies as protectionist hypocrites, or perhaps make it more obvious, depending on your perspective. So other reasons for war must be found, such as the popular "weapons of mass destruction". But it's not just about greed. The strength of the dollar is of strategic importance to the U.S. and a number of other countries as well. Without cheap imports, cheap energy, and easy credit, the economy of many countries will fall to pieces, along with their ability to exert military force. Thus, the dollar will be defended with more than just words. So, if the Iranian oil bourse gets bombed out of existence, in late March or April, you'll know why.

Speaking of escalations, "Eternal Devotion to the Dark Goddess" is now in the recording stage. I've been able to buy some choice new gear and make a few more adjustments to the recording method. The new CD will represent another big step towards studio quality production, most notably in the recording of vocals, which I'm sure that you will all appreciate very much.

A big ‘Hello’ to anyone receiving the Burning Blade for the first time. This is the Fireaxe newsletter.

Recording begins on "Eternal Devotion to the Dark Goddess"

The recording process for the latest Fireaxe CD has now begun and the first tracks are being laid down with a vengeance. I probably won't upload as many rough cuts as I did during the "Food for the Gods" recordings, but I will try to whet your appetites with some new material this year, maybe by mid-year, maybe sooner. I think that this CD works best if you don't know much about it when you first hear it and so I don't want to ruin it for you.

As per usual, the recording process commenced with the traditional "spurning of the muse". While most musicians and artists follow the seductive call of a "spiritual force" which guides their hands and floods their minds with creative power and energy, Fireaxe did away with the bitch decades ago, determining her to be quite the waste of time. Still, she does come back now and then to haunt my recording studio and to have her offers of the fulfillment of fanciful dreams turned down harshly. This time was no exception, although things did go a little differently…

(insert costly computer graphics sequence cueing the start of a dreamlike flashback here)

A dream was it? Or had I been awake, walking over rolling hills as I held the hand of the woman whom I had dreamed about since I was old enough to masturbate. I hoped that I was dreaming since I wasn't wearing a stitch of clothing, but that didn't seem to bother anyone else, save for a couple of squirrels snickering at me from the safety of a nearby tree.

It was a beautiful day, the kind of day that only seemed to happen once a year when I lived in Michigan, and as we came to the top of a great hill my muse stretched out her arm towards the mind-numbing blandness of the suburbs below.

"Brian.", she said with a brilliant smile. "I want to show you something. Something that you've always want to see."

"Wait a minute.", I replied. "I'm in a dream, dreaming about my dream woman…So, why aren't we screwing?"

"We just did.", my muse smiled shyly. "A few minutes ago under the shade of that poplar tree."

I frowned. "I don't remember that. For me the dream started just now.", I replied, frustrated. Then I got an idea. "I don't suppose that we could…"

"Nope.", she replied, irritatingly cheerfully. "Not enough time. I've got something that I want to show you."

Hmmph. Even in my dreams I can't get laid.

"I want to show you the dream that you rejected when you first spurned me. The dream that would have happened had you kept hope alive and not fallen into that pit of hopelessness that you call 'atheistic nihilism'.", she said without a hint of disdain. "This is no dream. This is what could have been."

"It's not hopelessness, it's realism…", I began, trying to correct her, but I stopped before I got started since even I understand that it's pretty pointless to argue about realism with an entity whose entire existence is based on hope.

"Do you see the big house at the end of the drive?", she asked, pointing to a nice two-story dwelling with a fenced in yard and a minivan parked out front. "That's where your family lives."

"Family?", I said, stunned at the thought. It seemed so surreal to me that I would ever have a family. At first glance it didn't look half bad, after all the house was a lot nicer than my apartment. But when I imagined it filled with screaming kids it didn't seem so nice anymore. Then I took a look at the minivan and the bad news hit me even harder.

"Wait, I drive a minivan? What the Ford?", I cursed. "Well, I know what needs to be done. I'm going to go down there and strangle my dream self. I know for a fact that's what he would have wanted if he ever ended up behind the wheel of one of those soccer-mombiles."

Never losing her cool for a minute my muse simply pulled me along down the hill towards my dream family's house. When we walked in the door I was not prepared for what I saw. There they were, my dream wife, and my two dream children.

"Woah, is that my wife? She is hot.", I said, absentmindedly uttering perhaps the most tired slang term in existence.

"Yes, she is.", my muse replied. "You found one who looked a lot like me and you never gave up when you courted her. You just had to have her and you never let her go, even when she rejected you and slept around with a few of your co-workers. Eventually you won her heart because you had that special quality."

"I was…whipped?", I asked.

"You were kind to her, always.", she countered.

"Like I said…", I answered. "Hey, look at that little dude. He looks exactly like me."

"That's your son.", my muse pointed out happily.

I watched the odd looking little boy happily playing with his older sister and remembered scenes like that from my own childhood.

"And he's smart too, just like his dad.", my muse said, sensing that I was about to have some deep regrets.

Regrets, yes, I was feeling them. Sure, having a wife who'd slept with a lot of guys was annoying, I mean, really annoying, but winning her in the end seemed to make up for it. Well, maybe. But it was looking at my son that really did it for me. There he was, sitting there before me and looking like the same awkward kid that I thought that I had left so far behind in the past. I wanted to help him. I wanted to steer him through all of life's obstacles that had tripped me up and brought me needless suffering. I knew that I could look past all of the ridiculous middle class clichés, the house in the suburbs, the minivan, commuting, day care, those annoying inflatable birthday party castles, and focus on just one thing, my son. But this was a dream that I'd pushed aside. I'd missed my chance. What had I done?

I looked to my muse, wondering if it was too late to try again, but instead of seeing a smarmy kind of "I told you so" look on her face I saw a mixture of sadness and dread. That was unusual to say the least. I was about to ask why when someone else came through the door. It was a man, and it wasn't me.

I watched this stranger kiss my dream wife, play with my dream children, and do all of the things that a good father does. I didn’t ask who it was but my muse told me anyway.

"He's your wife's lawyer. She met him during your divorce.", my muse replied sadly. "They're not married, so you still have to pay alimony. He really screwed you over in court. You ended up with almost nothing."

Divorced. Just like everyone else in my family. I could believe it. Well, more than that. I'd avoided marriage because I felt that divorce would be inevitable for me. Well, not just for me, it's almost like a rite of passage these days.

Still, it didn't feel good to see what was happening with my dream family. In fact, I was feeling some serious anger. That's where the dream seemed a little unreal. Here was a man who was sleeping with my wife, stealing my money, and raising my children in my place. What exactly was keeping my dream self from driving up here and pummeling him to death? I was considering doing it myself, but fortunately my muse pulled me away before I poltergeisted the crap out of the bastard.

"Come. I'm going to show you where you live.", she said, still feeling sad, a look that I'd never seen before that day.

My muse led me to a familiar looking apartment, it was where I used to live, in the suburbs of Detroit.

"Oh fuck, I'm still in Michigan?", I moaned.

"Of course.", my muse answered. "Your house and family are both here. You weren't able to go running off to California when the opportunity came up."

My mood darkened as I walked into my dream apartment. It was only partially furnished, which I remembered from years long past, but something seemed to be missing. After a full tour I realized what it was.

"Where are my guitars? My music studio? My Fireaxe posters?", I asked my gloomy muse.

"There is no Fireaxe.", she answered. "You were so busy chasing your wife-to-be that you never had time to write 'Nathicana'. You never realized that you could write wonderful music. Your old 4-track player is here in the closet next to your guitar. And with the alimony, child support, and house payments, you can't afford to spend much on hobbies. It doesn't really matter though. You have to work extra hours to make ends meet so you're too tired to do much when you get home anyway."

I couldn't believe it. No Fireaxe? No music? This wasn't a dream, it was…well you know the rest of the cliché.

"Mostly you watch television or play computer games.", my muse said dejectedly. "And wait for the one weekend every month when you can see your children."

The horror was sinking in, but it didn't end there. The next thing that I knew my dream self walked in the door. He was a tired, worn down, shell of a man who looked a whole lot older and chubbier than I did in the real world. I looked into my dream self's eyes as he walked past me and I saw absolutely nothing. He was beaten, defeated. He had surrendered. In his eyes I saw the look that most people think that I have in my eyes when they hear the epic tragedies that I've written and recorded. He wasn't someone I ever wanted to be.

"I suppose that you're wondering why I showed this to you.", my muse began.

I had to admit that the thought hadn't occurred to me, but now that she mentioned it I began to wonder. The first thing that came to mind was that there was going to be some kind of surprise happy ending, like we would fast forward ten years into the future to a time when everything would have worked out wonderfully or something like that.

"I assume that you're going to say that it's all worth it just to have children, even if you don't get to see them much.", I replied.

But instead of saying anything like that, my muse asked a simple question, "Now that you know, do you feel that it's worth it?"

I took another long look at my dream self and compared that to what my life is like in California. Then I thought about my dream son. At first he began to balance the scales, but then I wondered if I could really say that he was my son if I wasn't any more than a small part of his life. That wasn't fatherhood. That was a sick joke.

"No. Fuck this.", I replied solemnly. "It looks like I chased after the American Dream and ended up with the American Reality. What I have isn't what I wanted but I'll take what I've got."

"That's what I thought you'd say.", my muse replied quietly. "I showed you this because I wanted to know why you spurned me so many years ago. Did you foresee this? Did you know that this was going to happen to you? Was that how you resisted me? I don't understand how you could do that. I'm everything that you ever wanted."

I wasn't sure what to say at first. I took a seat next to my dream self on my dream couch and watched the dream Pistons beat the crap out of the dream Lakers on the dream TV for a few minutes. My muse waited patiently while I thought things through.

"Spurning you wasn't something that I decided to do. I didn't make up my mind one day to quit chasing you. How can I explain it? It just…happened.", I began. Then I held up my index fingers on both hands and held them apart. "In the mind there's a gap between what you have and what you need. You can only jump that gap by doing certain things and doing them very well, but when you do all those things and manage to jump across the gap, it makes you feel really good. It makes you feel loved."

"You're talking about the permanent psychological deficit aren't you?", my mused interrupted, reminding me that she knew all about my unique neuropsychological theories.

"Yeah, but let me explain it in simple terms.", I answered, knowing that this wasn't a dream, but a story that I was writing for my newsletter, so I needed to be more explicit. "Now the wider the gap is, the harder it is to jump across, and the harder that you have to work at the things that let you feel good about yourself. But if the gap is too wide, it doesn't matter how hard you try, you just can't get there. You end up burnt out."

My muse sat down next to me on the dream couch. "Can't get there?", she asked. She didn't like that idea.

"Yeah, can't. The brain is plastic. Neurons can burn out. Connections can be severed and they do not grow back.", I told her, reaching back into my studies of neurology. "Of course, the brain can adapt. It can find other ways of doing things, but it never returns to how it was before. That's what learning is, especially when dealing with matters of great importance. It's how it stops you from making serious mistakes. Think about it in evolutionary terms. An organism doesn't survive very long if it keeps doing things that put it in danger or cause it great pain. So the brain makes sure that serious mistakes are not replicated. It destroys some connections or lets them wither and die so that they are never used again."

My muse didn't seem convinced, but she let the point slide and allowed me to continue.

"Now, when you're raising a child, you want this gap in their mind to be as wide as possible, so that he or she works really hard to get their rewards. But you don't want it to be so wide that the child can't get across and gives up trying.", I explained, using my fingers to demonstrate the point. "People who work hard for things almost always do well at life. Good parents know that, so they try to teach their children to work hard by making them jump through all sorts of hoops to win their affection. It's simple really, the child learns the value of hard work through classic conditioning."

"So you're saying that your parents…", my muse began.

"Pushed the gap open a little too wide.", I replied, finishing her sentence. "That's a decent guess. I'm driven to excel a lot more than most people. And I don't get much pleasure from things that I don't have to work hard for. Those seem to be signs that I've got a very large gap to jump and a strong need to jump it."

"Oh, come on, Brian. Blaming your parents?", my muse teased me. "That's not very original."

"Blaming them for my successes is what I'm doing.", I countered. "I don't regret that. But there was a price to pay. And it really wasn't them who drove the final nails into the coffin for me. I'm not blaming them for what happened."

"Okay, tell me your story.", my muse said and this time I did not refuse her.

"I did chase you, as a lovesick teen and an awkward young man. I believed with all my heart that you were out there somewhere and that all I had to do was find you.", I began, remembering what it was like to be me decades ago. "In my dreams it was so easy to find you, and so wonderful when I did. Your smiling face was everywhere. But in reality the faces that I saw showed only indifference, bemusement, disdain, revulsion, and all too often a reluctant tolerance that quickly turned to hostility the moment that I made any mistake. I took it all very hard, as most young men do, but probably harder than most since I needed you so much. To me each failure was like a catastrophe, each rejection cut me like a knife, and each harsh word hit me like a hammer. You can only come back from things like that so many times. You need to find at least some success, some acceptance to keep you going. But for me it was not to be."

My muse had no words to say, only a sorrowful look in her eyes.

"My last try was with a woman who reminded me so much of you that it felt as if my dreams had been given an earthly form.", I continued with a hopeful but ominous tone. "I felt so good when I was with her. I was so relaxed and so true to myself that I felt that my search was over. It was the most wonderful thing that I'd ever felt in my life. But still, I had to chase her, and she seemed to delight in giving me the runaround or standing me up. She didn't feel the same way about me that I did about her, but I felt that I could win her over anyway. I was willing to endure the pain for the promise of bliss."

"Well, my efforts went for naught.", I continued, letting the tale pour out of me. "She toyed with me for reasons that I did not understand and in the end she just pushed me away like I was nothing. I was hurt more than I though was possible, and as I walked home that sunny spring day I felt something inside of me die."

I turned to my muse who could no longer look at me. "I know that sounds overly dramatic.", I added. "But it's the truth. After that day there was no more love in my heart. I could hear others say the word and I could even say it myself, but I couldn't feel it. Love was gone. I couldn't feel it at all anymore. I still chased you, kind of, but my heart wasn't in it. The only thing left was a sexual desire that wouldn't go away. Well, eventually I found a friend, a woman whom no one wanted, and I made her my lover. That was good while it lasted but there was no romance. I wish that there could have been, but that was something that I could no longer give or feel."

"There's always hope.", my muse replied instinctively, but I just shook my head.

"I know myself better than anyone, and I know when something is over and done with inside of me. It's happened before with other things, things that I now no longer care for in any way.", I answered. My muse looked beside herself with sadness, knowing that she was one of those things. "But like I said, the brain adapts. It finds other ways to get from one point in the mind to the other. And that is why Fireaxe music sounds the way that it does."

My muse was still listening, so I continued.

"The epic tragedies, the soaring harmonies, the intensity of the sound both lyrically and musically, these are things which are meant to evoke powerful emotions.", I explained. "That's by design. Fireaxe music needs to be that way since it has a tall order to fill. Those songs have to get me across that grand chasm in my mind and make me feel how I need to feel."

"Loved?", my muse whispered.

"No.", I answered with a sigh. "The music that I write fills me with a deep feeling of sadness, but it's a sadness that's so beautiful that it feels good to me instead of bad. Love has no meaning for me, but despair, yes, that is the emotion that can touch my heart. It is often that tears come to my eyes when I listen to my music, and there are passages that I've even had trouble recording because of how strongly I felt when I sang the lyrics. When I hear the music I remember how I used to feel and who I am inside. I remember my hopes and my tragedies, my dreams and my suffering, my anger and my despair and strangely enough, when it's all over I feel at peace."

Then I watched as my muse's skin shimmered and then turned to shining chrome. A single tear, appearing like mercury, rolled down one of her cheeks. My dream world apartment turned to flames all around us and I watched as the fires reflected off of my muse's face. A moment later she was gone. The dream disappeared and I woke up.

It was time to get started on the new CD.

The Fireaxe theory - Outline

I. Basics - well established theories

  • 1. Emergent systems - that complex systems can arise from the interactions of simple things
  • 2. Natural selection - that organisms mutate, proliferate, and compete, with the "losers" becoming extinct
  • 3. Behavioral science - that neurological systems, at their core, function according to the rules of conditioning
  • 4. Entropy - that within a closed system, entropy always increases, which limits the amount of transformation that can occur

II. Extensions

  • 1. That consciousness is an emergent system: a complex system arising in the human mind from the interaction of simple neurons.
  • 2. That civilizations are emergent systems arising from the physical interactions of humans whether conscious or not.
  • 3. That ideologies are emergent systems arising from the psychological interactions of conscious humans
  • 4. That emergent systems follow the laws of natural selection in much the same way that organisms do
  • 5. That the universe is, by definition, a closed system

III. Contentions regarding consciousness

  • 1. That consciousness is a survival advantage
  • 2. That being a member of an ideology is a survival advantage
  • 3. That making its members conscious is a necessary part of an ideology's survival
  • 4. That consciousness is created by instilling within a person a permanent sense of inadequacy - in essence a state of constant fear
  • 5. That the deeper the sense of inadequacy, the stronger the person is motivated - generally to serve their ideology

IV. Contentions regarding ideological struggle

  • 1. That ideologies fight for survival using many methods including, but not limited to, war and enslavement
  • 2. That aggression is a survival advantage
  • 3. That aggressive ideologies make members of rival ideologies feel afraid and inadequate which in response become more aggressive, thus creating a vicious circle
  • 4. That aggressive ideologies must continue to grow or face internal strife as their aggressive members will feed on each other to satisfy their needs
  • 5. That internal struggle results in ideological mutation

V. Contentions regarding the future

  • 1. That internal strife is inevitable since the laws of entropy imply that continuous growth is not sustainable
  • 2. That the abstract bases for ideologies transcend mortality and thus suicidal aggression is not restrained by fear of death
  • 3. That ideological mutation will eventually result in the creation of a suicidal ideology which will attempt to save the human race by destroying it

How to order Fireaxe CDs

Ordering Fireaxe CD's is an informal process as I am selling them personally out of my apartment. Simply mail me a letter which contains the following:

  • 1. The names of the CDs that you want to buy.
  • 2. The address where you want the CDs sent.
  • 3. Cash, a check, or a money order for the total cost.

Here is a price list. The first number is the cost for U.S. based customers, the second is for outside the U.S. The prices include shipping and handling.

Food for the Gods: $12 / $14
Victory or Death: $5 / $7
Lovecraftian Nightmares: $5 / $7 (SOLD OUT)
A Dream of Death: $3 / $5 (booklet out of print)

Send everything to:

Brian Voth
1301 Medical Center Dr. #415
Chula Vista, CA, 91911 USA

If you review CDs on a website or in a magazine, any one of the single CDs (Not "Food for the Gods") is free of charge in exchange for the review. In this case all I need is a request by e-mail. Please send me the URL of your review site or copy of your magazine with the review in it when it is done. If you want to exchange CDs, tapes, or stuff of equivalent value, make these requests via e-mail and we'll arrange a trade.

The CDs come with a booklet filled with awesome art, a letter about the project, and some information about the CD which can also be found on the Fireaxe site.

Lastly, if you want to print and distribute Fireaxe CDs I can send you an additional CD which contains tiff files for all the booklets, tray cards, and labels for each project. The tiff disk is free so just say the word.

The Future

For the rest of this year and part of the next I will be recording the next Fireaxe CD entitled "Eternal Devotion to the Dark Goddess". I'd like to have it complete by the end of 2006. The new CD will dig deep into the dark crevices of our society and our minds, pull forth the myths that we cling to and hold dear, and expose them all for what they are. While “A Dream of Death” explored the madness of dreams, and “Food for the Gods” described the chaos wrought upon the earth by ideologies, “Eternal Devotion to the Dark Goddess” will depict the psychological enslavement of the individual in modern times. It will be the darkest Fireaxe work ever.

My goal is to deliver music to whoever wants to hear it in whatever way is necessary. Whatever the market demands, I will supply, but I do want to avoid the mass marketing channel. Exposure is fine, but in the modern business, the substance of the music must be altered to match the demands of the marketplace. This would totally defeat the purpose of why I write music in the first place. I write music because it is a way to express my emotions. What I both think and feel goes into the songs. That is the power, Fireaxe is the channel, and any diversion diminishes the emotive effect. Thus I try to avoid such diversions. That is how art should be.

Rights to duplicate Fireaxe materials

Currently Fireaxe is not for profit. I sell the CDs for $5 each which covers the production and mailing costs. For CDs sent out of the country, I'll have to charge $7 per disk to cover the additional mailing cost. If you write reviews or put samples on your website I'll give you a CD for free. Since I am not making any money with the current recordings, you are free to make duplicates of them to distribute as long as you obey the following guidelines:

  • 1. You can only sell the duplications for the price of the medium or less, plus any delivery cost. You are not allowed to make any profit with the music.
  • 2. You should tell me how many copies you gave out and who got them so I can keep track. Also, if they have an e-mail address I'd like that as well so I can add them to the mailing list.
  • 3. You are likewise free to adorn any webpages or duplications with the gifs and jpgs on my website as long as you include an obvious link back to my website. This includes putting Fireaxe song samples on your site as well.
  • 4. You are free to play any Fireaxe songs (in unaltered form) provided you are an unsigned band without a marketting tie-in. You are not allowed to record those songs onto anything that you will sell.
  • 5. You are food for the gods.
  • 6. You are required to crank the song "Hounds of Tindalos" as loud as you can as often as you can. It's your only defense against THEM. Be warned, they come through angles. Note that the CD is round. Are your speaker cabinets square?
  • 7. Cthulhu, the Necronomicon, Hastur the Unspeakable, and all other mythos creatures are purely the inventions of Lovecraft and other fiction authors. None of it is real, at least that's what I'm going to say in court if you try to sue me for destruction of your property, house, city, or soul as a result of listening to the "Lovecraftian Nightmares" CD too much.
  • 8. You are free to play "The Rack" in school or church or any other institution bent on crushing your will and turning you into a mindless zombie slave of the corporate dominated world. Try not to develop a bad attitude about it.
  • 9. You are not free to commit suicide while listening to any Fireaxe song. I'm sorry, I'll have to prosecute. On a serious note, if you are thinking about doing it, please e-mail or call me if you have no one else to talk to. When I was in my teens the album "The Wall" by Pink Floyd used to really get to me. Just hearing songs like "Comfortably Numb", and "Hey You" would get me pretty depressed and mildly suicidal. I'm just trying to say that I've been there. If my music is having that effect on you, please get in touch. You aren't alone.

The gist of it is that you can do just about anything with the music as long as you don't profit from it and that I get some sort of credit for having written it. I'm open to any methods of distributing my music, such as compilation tapes or CDs, radio play, or recording label distribution. However, you will need my direct permission to do so or some kind of legal agreement.
Brian Voth - Creator of Fireaxe

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