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Autoluminescent: Rowland S. Howard (2011)

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From myth to legend Rowland Howard appeared on the early Melbourne punk scene like a phantom out of Kafkaesque Prague or Bram Stoker's Dracula. A beautifully gaunt and gothic aristocrat, ... See full summary »


Lynn-Maree Milburn (concept), Rowland S. Howard (excerpts from the manuscript "ETCETERACIDE" by) | 1 more credit »



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Credited cast:
Rowland S. Howard Rowland S. Howard ... Self - Interviewee
Genevieve McGuckin Genevieve McGuckin ... Self - Interviewee
Nick Cave ... Self - Interviewee
Mick Harvey ... Self - Interviewee
J.P. Shilo J.P. Shilo ... Self - Interviewee
Lydia Lunch ... Self - Interviewee
Adalita Srsen Adalita Srsen ... Self - Interviewee (as Adalita)
Jonnine Standish Jonnine Standish ... Self - Interviewee
Bobby Gillespie ... Self - Interviewee
Harry Howard Harry Howard ... Self - Interviewee
Rest of cast listed alphabetically:
Bronwyn Adams Bronwyn Adams ... Self - Interviewee
Barry Adamson Barry Adamson ... Self - Interviewee
Greg Ades Greg Ades ... Self - Interviewee
Janet Austin Janet Austin ... Self - Interviewee
Katy Beale Katy Beale ... Self - Interviewee


From myth to legend Rowland Howard appeared on the early Melbourne punk scene like a phantom out of Kafkaesque Prague or Bram Stoker's Dracula. A beautifully gaunt and gothic aristocrat, the unique distinctive fury of his guitar style shot him directly into the imagination of a generation. He was impeccable, the austerity of his artistry embodied in his finely wrought form, his obscure tastes and his intelligently wry wit. He radiated a searing personal integrity that never seemed to tarnish. Despite the trials and tribulations of his career, in an age of makeover and reinvention, Rowland Howard never 'sold out'. With recent and moving interviews, archival interviews and other fascinating and original footage, AUTOLUMINESCENT traces the life of Rowland S Howard. Capturing moments with the man himself and intimate missives from those who knew him behind closed doors; words and images etch light into what has always been the mysterious dark.

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Documentary | Music


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Did You Know?

Crazy Credits

R.I.P Noonie 1988 - 2011 See more »


Features Beauty and the Beast (1946) See more »


Pop Crimes
written by Rowland S. Howard (as R. Howard) (Mushroom Music Publishing)
performed by Rowland S. Howard
courtesy of Liberation Music
See more »

User Reviews

Autoluminescent - Interesting, Good, but not Great
12 July 2015 | by kateskyeSee all my reviews

Rowland S. Howard is depicted as a bold, passionate, innovative and opinionated guitarist. The film covers quite a bit of his early career in Australia, London and Berlin with The Boys Next Door / The Birthday Party. Nearly the first half of the film is dedicated to this period.

The rest of the film chronicles his career and personal life, skipping over certain projects but giving a general picture of his music's evolution. There is no shortage of interviews, which include Nick Cave, Mick Harvey and Howard, himself. Many more valuable view points come from his siblings, ex-lovers, old friends and fellow musicians.

I would say this film suffers mostly from occasional vagueness, a loose time line and a lack of photos and footage from certain periods in Howard's life. Overall it's an interesting and fairly insightful watch for those familiar with his music and fans of The Birthday Party. However, I can't guarantee that it will entertain the casual viewer.

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Release Date:

25 April 2013 (USA) See more »

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Sound Mix:

Dolby Digital


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