- Warren Ellis thinking out loud is always extremely fascinating. Which is probably why he’s been able to put together compilations of these “brain dumps” — he calls them — POD them, and sell them via the Net. (For example) And probably why he’s a sought-after speaker at tech shows and idea conferences. Check this out:
“And mostly missing the point (especially when calling it “an art movement”): it’s already happened. Bruce Sterling termed the NA tumblr a “gaudy, network-assembled heap made of digitized jackstraws,” which is a very Bruce Sterling way of handling James Bridle’s flat declarative “(it’s a) series of artifacts,” But it surrounds the actuality, which is that it’s raw reportage. It’s an unsorted Wikileaks dump of evidence that The New Aesthetic has been here for years, and it slid into view so insidiously that we didn’t even notice it. We were all looking at tiny bits of it. Everyone (in the fringe-y design-y tech-y circles that I exist on the outermost edges of) has gone nuts about it because so few people had had the massed raw evidence presented contextually to them like that.
The New Aesthetic may indeed have an ever changing (or at least oscillating) pattern of vibratory activity, but I don’t think whole thrust of the NA aggregation really supports the notion that it’s conscious. And ferreting out a specific psychic reality may lead you down the path of machine awareness and cosmic layers of psyche, but I would suggest that that gets you only a few years of fun in a Weimar Cabaret bierkeller while your neighbourhood’s been marked up for drone vision.”
- Last night after work I grabbed a slew of new music I had never heard of before. If you’re wondering: I troll the AllMusic site quite a bit. I look up things I’m sampling in my own music, I read reviews and entries in their blog, I use the “Followed” tab to get me into things my favorite bands like or were inspired by. But every month (sometimes a few times a month) I’ll check THIS LIST. The editor’s choice albums never really seem to disappoint, if you’re open minded enough. There will be things I won’t like from time to time, of course, that’s only natural. But I still feel looking into the stuff I’m not gaga for isn’t a waste of time. It’s valuable, actually. Anyways, last night I downloaded (legally…mind you; I do a pay-per-month deal):
Quakers - Quakers. This will be making it’s rounds on my stereo, for sure. In fact, next time I’m at a legitimate record store (nope, Best Buy doesn’t count) I may have to just pick up the hard copy. It’s essentially a hip-hop compilation from the label Stones Throw, which does great work regularly. Calling it a standard rap-label compilation though — as I kinda did — is a titch deceiving. The album is much more cohesive, interesting, and plain good than that label implies. 41 tracks, clocking in around 70 minutes. It’s an odd beast of a thing. Heavy electro programming, MPC-type sampling, and more rappers than you think you know. One to check out at least, if you enjoy hip-hop at all.
Carter Tutti Void – Transverse. Got this thing on right now. At first I thought, “well that’s kind of a weird for the sake of weird name”… then I read their very short bio on AllMusic: “collaboration of two generations of dark British electronic/industrial musicians, Carter Tutti Void features Throbbing Gristle’s Chris Carter and Cosey Fanni Tutti, and Nik Void of Factory Floor”. Yep, just their names. Apparently this group made lots of noise doing some improvised sets somewhere over the pond, which led to this album’s creation. At you can hear it in the tracks. They feel improvised the way certain Jazz albums do: not over-produced, and it sounds like a single take. There’s 4 tracks, each about 10 minutes. “V1″-”v4″.
And it has the best cover of the bunch (don’t have a seizure please):
Black Dice – Mr Impossible. This is some bat-shit crazy stuff. I’m talking a Grant Morrison goofy-70s-Batman-was-on-Acid level of craziness. In fact, this album might be good to read his “Batman & Robin” saga to. Interesting. Anyways, the quickest and easiest way to describe Black Dice is by saying they are “Electronic”. Which isn’t wrong, but they borrow from such a grab-bag of genres and generations and movements it seems unfair to use one word to describe it. There’s a track on “Mr. Impossible” where this Industrial type pulse is going, and I don’t think it is 4/4, then there’s this very old-school wah’ed out funk guitar providing the melody (kinda) over the top. So what do you call that? Electro? Industrial? Funk? Funk-Industrial?? I find that genres a lot of times just get in the way.
Chano Dominguez – Flamenco Sketches. This is can classify, easily. Jazz, Jazz, Jazz. In such a pure form. This guy is a pianist, tried and true. And listening to him play is a pleasure to the ears, I’d imagine seeing him live is a real treat. He’s been around for a long time, originally working in groups; he started his solo career in the 80s after leaving a group called CAI. He’s been making critically aclaimed Jazz albums for years, but “Flamenco Sketches” is a little different: it’s a reimagining of a classic LP of the genre, Miles Davis’ “Kind Of Blue”. The last song on that album was titled “Flamenco Sketches”. I’ve seen some purists dog Dominguez for both going down this path and his execution of it (you can’t complain about both). I laugh at that. Not to say music cannot be sacred, most of it is, I think I just see “sacred” as something else entirely.