Thursday, April 04, 2013

not to be confused with the Karkus, which is from Dr. Who

So this semester I'm in this trippy class called Literature and the Related Arts: Sfumato, Synesthesia and Spirit, which I took mainly because the prof is the right kind of crazy.  (Also, "William Blake: WTF?" is an ongoing literary interest of mine, so any class about literature and the visual arts is Right Up My Alley.)  We had a guest lecturer this week, a local landscape painter whose work has gone from fairly straight representational oil-based cornfields to psychedelic watercolor cornfields.  Apropos of nothing, this dude recommends listening to Emerson, Lake & Palmer's second album Tarkus, which I am doing as I type this.  Some kindly miscreant uploaded the whole thing to YouTube.  Thanks, kindly miscreant!

While poking about the internets for this album, I stumbled across this image, from inside the album:

click to embiggen

I just thought all you all needed to see that, especially my Encounter Critical homies.


  1. I think that art tells a totally rad story.

  2. Tracked armadillos with cannon arms. That is, as the kids (used to? were alleged to?) say, the shizzNITE.

  3. Your encounter critical homies might also want to see this for their Damnation Vans!

    Check out the floorplans! And the owner's manual is here:

  4. Tarkus and Trilogy are my favorite ELP albums, but Tarkus definitely gets the most play in our home :D


  5. My family has a multigenerational love of Tarkus. I introduced it to my own wee ones last year.

  6. Anonymous1:19 PM

    Speaking of music, of WTF, and of Youtube, I think I found a theme song/video for your next D&D campaign. See if you can recognize the singer; his t-shirts may help. This is from his prime, about 20 years ago.

  7. Tarkus is a city state in my campaign world & capital of the Tarkan Empire. "Hail Tarkus!"

    1. I would never be able to stop saying "Hail Tarkus!"

      Once in a Feng Shui RPG game I played a vehicle guy from the future named Tarkus. In fights, the GM was considerate enough to basically let me pull out any interesting vehicle from the scenery that I wanted, so there were helicopters, jousting on motorcycles, muscle cars, a ski-doo, and once there was a jet pack. Oh, and his theme song was the ELP song.

  8. You might be interested to know that Tarkus was statted out as a D&D monster in All the Worlds' Monsters Vol. 3 (1980).

  9. Anonymous7:54 AM

    Even some ELP fans say things went downhill from Tarkus onward, but it's always been my favorite among their albums. It does sound kind of dated nowadays with all the digital burps and farts, but really their entire oeuvre has that problem. ;)

    Also I wonder if the manticore on the album art is the first depiction of one with a scorpion tail, or if that imagery is older.