Here to Eternity with The Godz
The Syndicate mourns the passing of Larry Kessler, OBM.
October 3, 1941-March 24, 2022
He was one of us.
Here to Eternity with The Godz is a psychoactive documentary about The Godz, one of the first psychedelic rock bands.
The film features Larry Kessler (1941- 2022) of The Godz, a pioneering psychedelic rock band once part of Bernard Stollman’s supremely strange ESP-Disk record label. Albums by The Godz – Contact High With The Godz (1966), Godz 2 (1967), and Third Testament of The Godz (1968) – took psychedelia deep into freak-outs. The Godz also worked for the ESP-DIsk, helping produce Sun Ra, The Fugs, Albert Ayler, etc.
Fifty years later, Larry Kessler returns to the New York City neighborhood where The Godz made their music. We encounter his inner Buddha, and the viewer is transported into the past and well beyond.
The soundtrack to Here to Eternity with The Godz includes an excerpt from “Permanent Green Light” by The Godz (from Godz 2), and features an original musical score of psychedelic noise by Kid Congo Powers (The Cramps, Nick Cave & the Bad Seeds), Blake Fleming (The Mars Volta), and Dino Sorbello (Laughing Sky). Montage includes excerpts from “The Godz” (1966) by Jud Yalkut. Director: Jeffrey Wengrofsky. Camera: Brian Wengrofsky. Editing: Brendan McGowan.
According to infamous rock critic Lester Bangs: “What makes [The Godz] so special? Well, theoretically, anybody can play like that, but in actual practice, it just ain’t so. Most people would be too stultified – after all, what’s the point of doing it if anybody can? – and as for you, you probably ain’t got the balls to do it, and even if you did, you’d never carry it through like a true Godzly musical maniac must to qualify. You’d just pick it up and tootle a few bars to prove something, and that’s entirely different. Me, I could do it because I have been years, even before I heard of the Godz. All it takes is insane persistence and a total disregard for everything but getting that yawp out of you if you gotta howl at the moon, and obviously most folks aren’t gonna howl at the moon just to prove a point. But the Godz would! And not to prove a point, but because they like howling at the moon! Which is what sets them apart.”
(“Do the Godz Speak Esperanto?” Creem Magazine, December, 1971.)