The Legend of the Black AssassinsKnow then, O good reader, the legend of the Black Assassins. Long ago, at the time of the first crusades, Hasan-ben Sabah (aka The Old Man of the Mountain) gathered together a crew of rebels sworn to fight oppression in all its forms.
After lengthy training in the arts of agitation, subversion, insurrection and assassination, the Old Man took his crew to a pleasant valley where the fruits and sweetmeats were plentiful and all their sexual desires were satisfied. The Old Man told the crew that this was Paradise where they would go if they were killed on the job. The crew knew that this was bullshit because there is no heaven or hell except what we create on earth. But they played along with the Old Man because he also supplied them with some excellent hashish and they loved drugs of all kinds, particularly when they made their wild and anarchic folk music.
The assassins set to work, taking out enemies of freedom with style and panache until they brought the crusaders to their knees. But then they were sold out by the Old Man, so they joined up with the Knights Templar who were opponents of oppression and true party animals. Persecution by the church and state forced the Templars and Assassins underground but they continued to spread the idea of freedom, particularly through their wild and anarchic folk music, and fought against oppression wherever they could: with Da Vinci and Michelangelo against the Medici, with the Levellers and Diggers against Cromwell’s false commonwealth, at the American, French and Russian revolutions, with the surrealists in France, the Anarchists in Spain and everywhere in 1968.
Fast forward, Queensland 1981: The Bjelke-Petersen government and its suck-arse police force were a vicious and corrupt cabal that hid their money-grubbing ways behind a violent crackdown on dissent. A breakaway group, known as the Black Assassins, decided it was time to go public to bring on the confrontation necessary to bring down the Bjelke-Petersen government. Their motto was “Lyrics are my daggers, Music is my sword”. Their wild and anarchic folk music caught the tempo of the times and they built up a hardcore following of revolutionary troublemakers who rocked out to “Brisbane’s Ugliest Band” before heading out on their own kamikaze missions.
The Black Assassins played under houses, in local halls, in pubs, at benefits for prisoners, public radio and peace and supported the Dead Kennedys at Festival Hall. The Black Assassins considered the only good gig was one that ended in confrontation with the police and their wild and anarchic folk music usually convinced the police to oblige.The Black Assassins got their message out and eventually even the straight press had to ask the hard questions about the Queensland police and their money-sucking minders in Bjelke-Petersen’s National Party. In the end the whole hokey house of cards came tumbling down. They were seen in Berlin in 1989 as the wall came down, fighting both Saddam and the US in southern Iraq in 1991 and even giving Monica Lewinsky a few tips. Rumours that they were involved with 9/11 are absolute bullshit because as the Black Assassins say: “We don’t do collateral damage.”
But as the post-9/11 backlash sets in and arseholes everywhere use the opportunity to promote phony fundamentalism and clamp down on freedom, the Black Assassins have decided to release the long lost tapes of the fabled Sunshine Studios sessions. Only now can the full story be told.