Boyd Rice

From Academic Kids

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Boyd Rice

Boyd Rice (born 1955) is an American experimental sound artist, archivist, and writer best known for his pioneering industrial noise music under the name NON, and most notorious for his support for Social Darwinism, which have often led to accusations of Neo-Nazism.


Early sound experiments

As a teenager, Rice started creating noise in 1975 out of an interest in tape machines and bubblegum pop with female vocalists such as Little Peggy March and Ginny Arnel. Originally creating recordings for his own listening, he started to do performances, and eventually press records. He began creating simple noise loops from his collection of bubblegum pop recordings, and soon Non was born; he reportedly selected the name Non because "it implies everything and nothing." One of his earliest efforts consisted entirely of a loop of every time Leslie Gore sang the word "cry".


Under the name NON Rice has recorded several seminal noise music albums, and collaborated with experimental music/dark folk artists like Current 93, Death in June and Rose McDowall (site ( Most of his music has been released on the Mute Records label. Rice has also collaborated with Foetus, Tony Wakeford (pic ( of Sol Invictus and Michael Moynihan of Blood Axis. His later albums have often been explicitly conceptual. On Might! (1995), Rice interjects portions of "Ragnar Redbeard"'s Social Darwinist harangue, Might is Right over sound beds of looped noise and manipulated frequencies. 1997's God and Beast explores the intersection in the Soul of man's physical and spiritual natures over the course of an album that employs abrasive soundscapes with passages of tranquility.

Techniques and implementations

From his earliest recordings, Rice has experimented with both sound and the medium through which that sound is conveyed. His methods of expanding upon the listening possibilities for recorded music were simple. On his second seven-inch, he had 2-4 extra holes punched into the record for "multi axial rotation". While working exlusively with vinyl, he employed locked grooves that allowed listeners to create their own music. He was one of the first artists, after John Cage, to treat turntables as instruments and developed various techiques for scratching. Although it is difficult to "prove" that Rice's turntablism preceded its connection to rap music, it is certainly true that he was treating sounds from vinyl recordings as early as 1975.

Crowd control

Early NON performances were designed to offer choice to audience members who might otherwise expect only a prefabricated and totally passive entertainment experience. He has stated that he considers his performances to be "de-indoctrination rites". Rice has performed using a shoe polisher, an electric guitar with an electric fan on it, and other homemade instruments. He has also used found sounds, played just below the threshold of noise, to entice his audiences to endure his high decibel sound experiments. Rice coupled his aural assaults with psychological torture on audiences in Den Haag, Holland by shining exceedingly bright lights in their faces that were deliberately placed just out of reach. As their frustration mounted, Rice said that he "continued to be friendly to the audience, which made them even madder, because they were so mad and I didn't care! They were shaking their fists at me, and I thought that at any minute there'd be a riot. So I took it as far as I thought I could, and then thanked them and left."

Re/Search Books

He became widely known through his involvement Re/Search Books. He is profiled in Industrial Cultural Handbook, which provides lengthy profiles, pictures, and reference pages for all its entries. In Pranks! [1] (, a collection featuring the raucous antics of such notables as John Waters, Joe Coleman, Mark Mothersbaugh, Mark Pauline, and Timothy Leary, Rice described his experience in 1976 when he tried to give President Ford's wife, Betty Ford, a skinned sheep's head on a silver platter.

Kinship with LaVey

In the mid-1980s Rice became close friends with Anton LaVey, founder and High Priest of the Church of Satan, and was made a Magister in the Council of Nine of the Church. The two mutually admired much of the same music and shared a similar misanthropic outlook. Each had been inspired by Might is Right in fashioning various works: LaVey in his seminal Satanic Bible and Rice in several recordings.

Social Dawinism

Boyd Rice's Social Darwinist outlook eventually led to him founding the Social Darwinist think tank called The Abraxas Foundation.

Accusations of Nazism

In 1989, Rice and Bob Heick of the American Front were photograped for Sassy Magazine wearing Nazi-like uniforms and brandishing knives. Done mostly as an in-your-face prank, the photo has caused boycotts and protests at many of Rice's appearances. When asked if he regrets the photo, Rice stated, "I don't care. I don't think I ever made a wrong move. The bad stuff is just good. America loves its villains.".

Various contributions

Rice has documented the writings of Charles Manson in his role as contributing editor of The Manson File. Rice was a featured guest on Talk Back, a radio program hosted by the Evangelical Christian Bob Larson [2] ( In total, Rice made three appearances on Larson's program.

After LaVey

Rice distanced himself from much of Satanism after LaVey's death in 1997. Recently he has focused on Gnosticism as well as Grail legends and Merovingian lore, sharing this research in Dagobert's Revenge [3] ( In 2000, along with Tracy Twyman, editor of Dagobert's Revenge, Rice filmed a special on the Rennes-le-Chateau for the program In Search of... on FOX television.


He began a romantic relationship (now defunct) with Lisa Crystal Carver, editor of Rollerderby fame, resulting in several recordings, performances and a son named Wolfgang. Although Rice was thought to possess the world's largest Barbie collection, he recently confessed in an interview with Brian M. Clark to owning a mere two.


Year Title Under the name
1977 The Black Album Self-Released LP Boyd Rice
1978 Knife Ladder / Mode Of Infection Self-Released 7" NON
1978/1981 Pagan Muzak LP-7" NON
1980 NON + Smegma Split 7" NON + Smegma
1981 The Black Album Mute reissue Boyd Rice
1982 Physical Evidence NON
1982 Rise EP NON
1984 Easy Listening for the Hard of Hearing (w/ Frank Tovey) NON
1987 Blood and Flame NON
1989 Music Martinis and Misanthropy Boyd Rice and Friends
1991 Easy Listening for Iron Youth (Best of Non Compilation) NON
1992 In the Shadow of the Sword NON
1993 Big Red Balloon (12"/CD single) Spell (w/Rose McDowall)
1993 Seasons in the Sun Spell (w/Rose McDowall)
1993 I'm Just Like You (10") The Tards (w/Adam Parfrey)
1993 Ragnarok Rune Boyd Rice
1994 The Monopoly Queen (7") The Monopoly Queen (with Mary Ellen Carver & Combustible Edison)
1995 Might! NON
1995 Hatesville The Boyd Rice Experience
1996 Heaven Sent Scorpion Wind (w/ Douglas P. & John Murphy)
1997 God and Beast NON
1999 Pagan Muzak (reissue) NON
1999 Receive the Flame NON
2001 Wolf Pact Boyd Rice and Fiends
2002 Children of the Black Sun NON
2004 Terra Incognita: Selected Ambient Works, 1975 to Present Boyd Rice/NON
2004 Alarm Agents Death in June & Boyd Rice



Print works


External links


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