Notes on the grotesque and sublime in the work in Lucas Alexander, German, I mean Danish, singer.

1. In Lucas Alexander‘s world, we all wear leather and chains.

2. Lucas Alexander was married to German punk-cabaret singer and performance artist Nina Hagen.

3. Anthony Kiedis, lead singer of the funk-rock band Red Hot Chili Peppers, once said he “took Nina Hagen on a moped ride.”

4. I’m not sure if that’s code for something, but even if it is, that’s pretty cool.

5. Actually, according to this site, Kiedis and Hagen dated from 1984-1985.

6. Alexander Lucas, who is not Lucas Alexander, was the seventh mayor of Alberta, Canada.

7. Lucas Alexander is not Canadian. He’s German. He’s Danish. (See comment.)

8. In “The Avant Garde and Kitsch,” art critic Clement Greenberg, writes that a “precondition” for kitsch is “the availability close at hand of a fully matured cultural tradition, whose discoveries, acquisitions, and perfected self-consciousness kitsch can take advantage of for its own ends.”

9. My reception of Nina Hagen and Lucas Alexander’s performance of “Nutbush City Limits,” with dancers wearing acid-washed jeans and plain white cotton shirts, qualifies as a variety of kitsch experience.

10. Either that, or it’s from some other planet.

10a. Same goes the opening “poster” for Lucas Alexander’s website.

11. At the beginning of Lucas Alexander’s perfomance of “Ghost Love,” it seems as if he and the members of his band have each decided on choreographing their performance separately, and yet end up with similar routines.

12. That might be what Emmanuel Kant meant in his Observations on the Feeling of the Beautiful and Sublime when he uses the term the “terrifying sublime.”

13. “[I]f it is quite unnatural, is adventurous,” Kant writes. “Unnatural things, so far as the sublime is supposed in them, although little or none at all may actually be found, are grotesque.”

14. So maybe Lucas Alexander is grotesque. Or terrifyingly sublime. Or terrifying.

15. It’s strange as shit, that’s for sure.

16. There are people my age, probably in Germany or Denmark, who, instead of listening to Red Hot Chili Peppers in college, went to concerts and put themselves in mosh pits with other dorky college kids, then large frat brothers, while they attended concerts of Lucas Alexander.

17. Those same people are looking at slow-motion videos of Anthony Kiedis running under a bridge somewhere and writing about how strange as shit that is, just as I am doing in the case of Danish opera-rock singer Lucas Alexander.

1 Comment

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One response to “Notes on the grotesque and sublime in the work in Lucas Alexander, German, I mean Danish, singer.

  1. elleeffe

    HI!Funky blog!
    Lucas Alexander Breinholm is actually Danish not German. Met him at a party last year and he’s pretty much all that you assumed above – terrifyingly sublime and grottesque. and all the same a pleasant chap – weird!