Sunday, 20 May 2012

Mente Errante

Sorry for the recent dearth of postings, I've just been a little uninspired to write lately. But I seem to have regained the urge, so here I am. I'm halfway through a massive musicological appreciation of the superlative* reissue of Sleep's Dopesmoker - you can hear what notes Al's playing! it doesn't sound like slurry anymore!! - still, for my money, the benchmark against which all Doom/Sludge/Thingy should be measured and by an accident of fate, was reissued in the same week as my birthday, a coincidence which slipped me by but was pointed out as very appropriate by a number of my good friends. I'm quite sure I have no idea what they mean... Fuck me it's good tho'.

One reason I haven't written much is music. After the smoking demise of my old (hi-fi) amp, it's replacement** proved to be so fucking amazing that every time I've sat down to write, I've been dragged back to the sofa by the music, so clear and beautiful is the sound, unable to concentrate on anything else, and then found myself completely unable to remember what the fuck it was I was going to write. Well, at least I've got a good soundtrack as Europe sails inexorably towards the economic event horizon lurking somewhere in the near future...

Eleh's Radiant Intervals is filling the room at the moment. One advantage of the place I live in now, is that it's fucking old, proper brick shithouse military architecture. I mean, the place was originally part of the Royal Artillery and is located in the parkland the army used to train people to lug and fire massive battefield artillery pieces, so unless you throw open every window, there's almost no leakiness at all, and that means I can listen to Eleh at the correct volume level. In other words, stupidly fucking loud. I love Eleh's music, ultra-minimal, like a sub bass obsessed cross between Elaine Radigue and Alvin Lucier, and the way it works as much on a physical level as a sonic one, absolutely filling the listening space with palpable density, seemingly giving the air that it's moving weight and substance, a thick, gooey sonic treacle permeating every corner of the room, making the whole place thrum as the high end oscillations tickle yr eardrums like starlight twinkling through the atmosphere. You can almost see and taste the waveforms. And (Dopesmoker has this effect too) when it ends, it feels like the pressure in the room has actually lowered, like the molecules of the air itself have been allowed to fly loose again, the sensation that a huge, unseen presence has left the building. It's akin to the delicious way the air feels after a massive thunderstorm, uncanny and wonderful and unusual.

The other thing I admire about Eleh is their? her? his? insistence on, and ability to maintain, absolute anonymity in this multiply-connected world of ours. Eleh have been around for 13 years, put out a fair amount of records, and still no one seems to have a clue who's behind it all. No websites, no interviews, no photos, no names, no nothing except the music itself. I like that.

Also, did you know that if you watch four Resident Evil films in one sitting, yr intelligence level slips lower and lower by the minute. I had to ring someone to find out how to work the fucking kettle after the third film...

Anyway, enough of this rambling foolishness, I've just got the first series of Archer on blu ray and I feel like laughing until my lungs fall out.

And one last thing, Dr C, tak for de lægemidler og solbriller, du kender mig for godt.

*Not a word I bandy about with great frequency, and certainly not towards Southern Lord, whose shit to good release ratio clocks in at around 10:1 (and growing) these days. They did this right though.

**It's a Rega Mira3, in case you were nerdy enough to be wondering. I won't have any other make of stereo gear in the house (speakers excluded - it's Tannoy all the way for that side of things).

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