The past few weeks or so I've been doing the Last.fm while I'm using the computer. It's alright, it seems to always play the same handful of songs which are pretty much all songs I like so it's not so bad.
It's more a boring than long story as to why if I have multiple gigabytes worth of music I'm doing the Last.fm, I don't know, I always have some issue or other when it comes to either space or RAM, this has to do w/ my RAM issue, BLAH!
The above photo and the B/W one below, I scanned from the "Spaced" linernotes
Whatever, it's been nice listening to music again when I'm using the computer. Anyway, the best (one of the best, listening to more of the late great Ivor Cutler, is another thing to come from all of this but that's for another post!) thing to come out of my Last.fm adventure has been a new found love for the Robert Wyatt era Soft Machine, particularly their second album, "Volume Two". I have pretty thoroughly listened to all of Robert's solo albums, his earlier work I avoided for a long time, I don't know, it always seemed way to Prog Rock for my taste. And my few attempts at listening to his earlier stuff, "The End of an Ear" (his actual first solo album although nobody seems to count it as such) and the first Matching Mole album pretty much proved my prejudice. Aside from a few tracks on the Matching Mole album, the rest I just found way too prog boring. B/c of my lack of interest in those two albums I didn't really even consider bothering w/ any of his Soft Machine material. Then last year somehow I became completely addicted to his Soft Machine era magnum opus "Moon in June" (from their third album naturally titled "Third") and all of it's different versions. That song for the most part is his first solo song, he played all of the instruments for the majority of the song. That pretty much broke the ice for the rest of it though, somehow from there I started listening to the second Matching Mole album, "Matching Mole's Little Red Record" and I in turn became completely addicted to that as well. What I really enjoy about "Moon in June" and the second Matching Mole album is the stream of consciousness quality to the lyrics. I love their banal-ness, they are almost anti-lyrics and b/c of that they become more evocative in a way? From there I'm sure I listened to more of the Soft Machine albums but they were more cursory auditions and nothing really came from them, I enjoyed the albums but moved on to other things?
The above personal listening history isn't entirely true, I forgot, I really got into the Soft Machine album "Spaced" and have liked it for some time now. It's somewhat of an oddball album for them, it wasn't released until 1996 and it's not really like any of their other albums (and I'm just talking Wyatt era) in that it's all instrumental and loop based.
Back to the Soft Machine's "Volume Two" and Last.fm, for some reason the version of "Volume Two" that Last.fm plays is just one long track that's the entirety of the album, which is a little over a half hour long. So whenever it comes up, I have to listen to the whole thing (and I usually do), actually I'm usually trying to get it to play next. Again it was the banal stream of consciousness of Robert's lyrics that has really hooked me. All of the songs meld together really well so listening to the entire album as one long track has been nice. Anyway I wanted to post the lyrics to a few of the choice songs (as they come up in order). —
Terrible album cover BTW.
HIBOU, ANEMONE AND BEAR
In the spring, I think of sex and means to ends Summertime, I like to sit upon the grass Autumn nights I go to parties with my friends Winter time is when I think about the past
But of course I do all those things all year 'round I mean, all the good things are there to be found It's all here, pick-a-bag and get to work If you don't, your life in fact will surely go berserk Or indeed be bored to death, which is worse? If something's not worth saying Not worth saying Not worth saying Say it...
THANK YOU, PIERROT LUNAIRE
In his organ solos, he feels 'round the keyboards Knowing he must find the noisiest notes for you to hear
And when I know that he's found them It feels so good... but I still can't see Why people listen, instead of doing it themselves
But I'm grateful all the same You're very kind and I don't blame you I don't mind if you just watch In fact I'd welcome it, welcome it, welcome it...
AS LONG AS HE LIES PERFECTLY STILL*
Here's a song for 'clean machine Kevin Majorca' He's found his own way of 'live in Majorca' Don't walk, don't drink Don't talk, just think Heaven on Earth he'll get there soon
Kevin's highly unlikely to get ill At least as long as he lies perfectly still He eats brown rice and fish - how nice Heaven on Earth, he'll get there soon
Good and bad go so well together in his tunes He wrote a song and called it the weather - or not He's Lucky or Pozzo, Estragon and Vladimir Waiting for something that's already there Heaven on Earth or is it the moon?
Why, why, why is he sleeping? Why is the trumpeter weeping? Kevin maybe asking to get back into my dreams His voice is so weak now and the customers are screaming Heavens above, we can't hear what you're saying
We've got something to tell you Hold on we wanted to thrill you Reckons it's so nice and it will make you feel better Something in the nature of a Lullabye Letter
Kevin on Earth there'll be one Kevin on Earth make room for one Kevin himself he'll be in Kevin on Earth, be here Or you could be now Or is he found, in Herne Bay...
DEDICATED TO YOU, BUT YOU WEREN'T LISTENING
Famous parabolic versions Songs that promise: Beauty, sleep, love, sadness. Do I dream that something's missing? Hungry, thirsty, open off-peak mind Give me the truth, give me the truth, give me the truth, tell me...
Songs and verses, Handy captions, Photographs of: Real-life action, horror, madness. Can it be that something's happening? Wash me, paint me, but please don't taint me Give me a chance, give me chance, give me a chance...
When I was young, the sky was blue And everyone knew what to do But now it's gone, the telly's here Mass media, the sewer too
Universal maximillion Eight rare cases Chickenpox and crawling gladness Seemingly it's nothing happening Cure my doctor don't swallow him down Give me the cure, give me the cure, give me the cure...
The night was cool, the moon was bright, The air was clear with oxygen The stars were there, and in my eyes Were thousands of chrysanthemums
Don't use magnets - Geophysics carry you back Wholesome, healthfood, homepride Satisfied Something outside gives out hunger Face my mirror Electricity...
All of the words to the above songs are by Robert Wyatt except the last song, I just noticed it has words and music credited to Hugh Hopper
On a sad side note, Hugh is currently in battle w/ leukemia, so send all good vibe his way!
GET WELL SOON HUGH!
* This Song, "As Long as he Lies Perfectly Still", is a nice little ode to Kevin Ayers who had recently left the group. It always makes me think of another sort of ode to Kevin Ayers later in his life written by John Cale That's not exactly so nice —
The bugger in the short sleeves fucked my wife Did it quick and split Back home, fresh as a daisy to Maisy, oh Maisy And the twelve-bore it stood in the corner Quite operatic in its self disgust It blew him all over the living room floor Like parrot shit, parrot spit, parrot shit was shot
Now suppose it was someone familiar Someone we all would know Embarrassing denouement, ne c'est pas? Familiar hyperbole
And there would go the secret plot The piss had missed the hole in the pot Like that ancient teenage dream From soul to poison soul to poison soul
Guts, guts, got no guts And stitches don't help at all Guts, guts, got no guts Holes in the body, holes in the legs Holes in the forehead, holes in the head Holes in the body, holes in the legs There should never be holes at all There should never be holes at all
So: kill all you want or more Make sure, do it right
BTW "Hibou, Anemone and Bear" is the new name of my imaginary band, "falseTRUE Lovers" is out!?!
I just read that Davey Graham died the other day. I'm not really even that much of a fan, I just know his work from the classic album he made w/ Shirley Collins, "Folk Roots, New Routes" (I did a long embarrassing post about it, here). Actually when I first was listening to that album his guitar playing annoyed me, I found it too flashy. But after many more listens it started to grow on me and that album has become one of my most favorite Shirley Collins albums. I also think it's really one of her strongest and most easily accessible (I wish they could've at least made one more). You really can't call it a Shirley Collins album though b/c Davey Graham's guitar presence on it is very much equal to Shirley's voice.
On a related note, a few weeks back I was trawling thru the archives of some blog or other and could not believe the amount of truly great people that had died this year, it was nuts. I was thinking they are going have to do a second night of the Oscars which will just be the montage of dead people!?!
While loading up my image banks w/ MISTER WHATEVER fodder about a week or so back I tapped into this vein of images that seemed to be their own piece and I started to get really excited by images w/ subtitles and how when re/arranged randomly they opened up the door to new meaning?
Of course that's no new discovery, even for me, that's exactly what I was doing w/ the little youtube movie I made. I'll take it where I can find it though and just enjoy discovering again what I already knew.