Friday, August 22, 2014

Kirkegaard's Church, Auditorium, Swimming Pool, Gymnasium




From Bryce's show yesterday today, a sort of tradition on Saturdays (Friday nights when I accidentally hit publish instead of save after forgetting to save for 2015 so I don't accidentally publish), here's a description of the pieces:

This work is a sonic portrait of four abandoned rooms inside the 'Zone of Exclusion' in Chernobyl, Ukraine. Recorded in October 2005, the sound of each room was evoked by an elaborate method: Kirkegaard made a recording of 10 minutes and then played the recording back into the room, recording it again. This process was repeated up to ten times. As the layers got denser, each room slowly unfolded its own unique drone of various resonant frequencies.

Jacob Kirkegaard's method  is inspired by Alvin Lucier's work "I am sitting in a room" [1970], who recorded his voice in a space and repeatedly played this recording back into that same space. In Kirkegaard's work, however, no human voice is being projected into the rooms: during the recordings he left the four spaces, to wait for whatever might evolve from these seemingly silent spaces themselves.

Holyfuck, I love this stuff. Love love love. Love. I'm Kensington to Frederick to Hagerstown to Hancock to Cumberland to Morgantown to Washington to Wheeling to Zanesville to Gambier with Planet on Monday and backwards by myself Tuesday, Earthgirl staying behind because school starts and she has to teach, good holyfuck, I wish she was with me, I will love the music I get to play LOUD!

Oh, the post title? It's Saturday Friday Night in Dead Blegsylvania: sure it's a Cheap Trick:

Debussy Plays; Trucks Flounder Past Like Gods Who've Lost Control of Their Machines, or: Born One Hundred Fifty-Two Years Ago Today

Forgive me, I love Claude Debussy's music, especially, as always, the solo piano pieces.


Mark Tredinnick

Every year the moon inches away from us. In time she’ll swim too far out
to anchor us at our habitual angle to the sun, and that will be the end
of the well-tempered and recursive wildness
                                                             that conceived and suffered us,
and that will be the end of us. We have just two
billion years to thank her for our time here. Eternity has a use-by date
But it’ll be up long before that, and in the meantime,
I sit on the cold step of the cowshed and watch the world throw its shadow
on the moon like a horseblanket;
                                                             in the meantime the moon reddens
in the refraction of all our dawns and sunsets, in a kind of transfigured cosmic
smog. An apocalypse that lasts three hours until it’s time to go to bed.
And in the meantime on the floor of my shed, blue planets sing in the hands
of children as they once sang in war. Two small worlds forged to cry terribly down
like creation unravelling upon one’s foes now
                                                               make a peaceful clangour on my secular desk.
One spins from its orbit and quakes and chips its cerulean shell on the floor
of heaven. The tectonics of play. We are loved like this, and this is how it ends.
I’m arguing a lot with death these days. And last night I found myself
in court poised to clinch the case against the absurdity of life.
Certainly, this was sleeping and certainly
                                                            I was dreaming and I’d been losing the thread,
but all at once I saw where my argument must run, and I was running it there
when my small boy cried and woke me and I went to him and now I’ll never know.
Spring now, and the river has drawn back her bow. The lark ascends
from the cd-player, and black ducks sip brown ditchwater in the yard.
Everything’s in bud or leaf, last of all
                                                              the silver poplars and the Osage Orange,
trees flaring even now in the backyard of the childhood of my friend, the poet,
the poet’s son. The world happens twice. Draw the linen string taut and shoot.
One lives in paradox. Debussy plays; trucks flounder past like gods
who’ve lost control of their machines. In between one makes one’s life up.
The sound is the price you pay for the sight
                                                             that meets you every morning and half
of what you paid for the house. The shed puts the perfect sky in her pocket,
and possums rut in the roof. Eternity is in rehearsal, and this is its soundtrack.
Brad mows an acre an hour. A general at ease on his machine, a banker
in overalls, he’s rationalised our small republic on one tank of gas. And this now—
cutgrass at four o’clock—is how
                                                              hope smells. Some days I can see no way out:
the body of the world in entropy. But today I sit among the ruins
of the afternoon, and I cannot see how it can’t all go on forever.
Meantime the moon has made herself new again, and there has been rain.
The Marulan hills, which had almost forgotten the taste of the word,
are spelling green again this afternoon,
                                                             and there’s water in a lake that’s been a paddock
for a decade. Three black cockatoos, and then three more, fly over as I take
the southwest road. And into all this panoply of hope, the new moon falls.

Thursday, August 21, 2014

Born Sixty-Two Years Ago Today

Holyfuck, I love that song. One of my Clash stories: in 1982 Pete Townsend asked Strummer if The Clash wanted to open for The Who for stadium shows in support of the Who's Who Are You and in September Blondie and me and Skevin Kinner got in my green Ford Valiant and drove to JFK Stadium in Philly for the show. Good blotter was involved, just a quarter tab for me (I was driving after all), two full for Blondie, who knows how many for Skevin, he was the provider, that and beer his gas money. Blondie promptly disappeared into the stadium crowd after seeing one of the hundreds of thousands of best friends she had - this was her act; what charmed me was the once in a while she ditched others to be with me - and Kinner ran into a friend w/blow and disappeared (I was invited, but this is true, loved ones can vouch - blow never worked on me. Zip, zero. I'd tell people this and they would lay out $$$'s worth of lines and I'd say, you're wasting your money, and they'd dare me: they wasted their money) and I didn't see Blondie for two weeks or Kinner for three. I had a good jangle, my car keys, I didn't freak out, I got down near the front on the infield. I'd seen The Clash before, had seen them when they were on and into the show; they were neither on or into the show. Who fans booed them. Joe said, leaving the stage, Fuck You, Philadelphia. I stayed on the infield for The Who - I am not a Who-hater, though they have not aged well for me (or me for them), but it turns out it was Moon's last US tour before he died, and he was who I watched at Who concerts.

UPDATE! Well, I conflated Who concerts. Good friend davidly points out in Kindly in an email that Keith Moon died in 1978, the same year Who Are You was released. I credit the hallucinogens and elapsed time between then and now. The rest of the story of that day is true, or as true as I can make it.

But that's about me. About Strummer: once, youngsters, The Clash were not the only band that mattered, but they did matter.

Here's Terre's tribute show from 2002 just after Strummer died.

Here's Diane's tribute show from 2002, just after Strummer died.

Lots of Clash at those two. When I put Strummer on the iPod now, it's the Mescalaros.