Subscriber article

Low Culture Podcast 14: Alli Logout On Velvet Goldmine

How cinema will change your life and queer lives on film are the subjects discussed on this month's Low Culture podcast, in which Alli Logout from Special Interest joins Luke Turner and Jennifer Lucy Allan to discuss Todd Haynes 1998 film, Velvet Goldmine

This month on tQ’s subscriber podcast we’re joined by Alli Logout of Special Interest, who are as you regular readers will know are one of our favourite bands (number three in our 2020 albums of the year, no less). Alli, a filmmaker as well as musician, picks Todd Haynes’ 1998 film Velvet Goldmine. Logout describes the film as a “rock opera”, which totally makes sense – while based on the lives of David Bowie, Lou Reed, Iggy Pop and so on in the 1970s, this is a wonderful work of fantasy. Perhaps that’s why it’s also a film that wasn’t taken seriously at the time, but has subsequently become something of a cult classic, and a staple of queer cinema. As Alli Logout puts it, “we don’t know too much about our history as queer folks, so it has to be made up, and what I love about the film is that is shows how queer punk rock is, and how queer glam rock is”. In the podcast, Alli speaks to Luke Turner and Jennifer Lucy Allan about how the film changed their life, leading to their finding themselves as a queer person, filmmaker and artist: “This film made me who I am today,” Logout tells us, “I found myself in Velvet Goldmine”. The film has been slagged off for not being an ‘authentic’ depiction of the relationship between Bowie and Iggy Pop but duh! that’s the point, we decide, as we praise Haynes for his beautiful summoning of the way in which music and fantasy can be so powerful in your teenage years. This is a film that works for young queer people trying to understand their identities in every generation. We also discuss how Velvet Goldmine was an antidote to 90s biphobia when it came out, how Haynes captures same-sex desire so beautifully, the way it was an entry for Logout to find more new queer cinema, and lament at the lack of dick on the big screen. To listen to The Quietus’ new Low Culture podcast, you’ll need to become a subscriber to the Low Culture or Sound & Vision tiers below or via Steady here. As well as this podcast, the Low Culture and Sound & Vision tiers get an exclusive essay and bonus newsletter (a buyers guide to niche genres) each month, and the the Sound & Vision tier gets an exclusive, tQ-commissioned musical release. Join via the Steady checkout below. The Low Culture podcast is produced by Alannah Chance.

The Quietus Digest

Sign up for our free Friday email newsletter.

Support The Quietus

Our journalism is funded by our readers. Become a subscriber today to help champion our writing, plus enjoy bonus essays, podcasts, playlists and music downloads.

Support & Subscribe Today