So maybe the PPG came back out sooner than I thought, but at least it was to lay down a faux bass on THE TRACK THAT SHALL NOT BE NAMED. And maybe at this point it might be wise to refer to it as THE TRACK THAT WON'T GO AWAY. Yes it's on its 7 iteration; but there's a reason for that. Which is: pay now, or pay later.
Pay now is: figure out the *general* constructs for this album (which seems more than a stones throw from MTAE) OR pay later: pull out one's teeth when you wonder if what you've done is some sort of living mistake.
Frankly put, it's all wrong until someone tells you otherwise. Or as Flood once said: "One man's meat is another man's snare drum."
The song, as is, has only gotten better by the hour, and is now complete enough in arrangement that we're tracking away (drums/synth/and bass on the helipad). Sound? Modern (whatever that is), with my trusty old drones firing away where needed. Your grandma's SP this a'int.
And that's the rub. Same, same, same or move, move, move. Same is working pretty well for most, so who am I to argue against it? Doesn't stop me though.
As Bloch said, "there's art and then there's kitsch." (I'm paraphrasing)
Art then, mostly, is worthless; if you do the numbers. But that which isn't turns out to be more valuable than any intellectual construct or monkey business (see bearded class smashing hamfisted power chords).
"Wait," says the punter. "You're giving them Joe's to much credit!"
Perhaps. and maybe 'tis true that they like their meat more than I like my synthetic snare drum.
But first, I'd be remiss to not mention the passing of legend Jack Bruce, who's music inspired me and countless others to both learn the blues and transcend them. May he sing as sweetly in heaven as he did here.
And in tribute to Jack I'd like to be able to tell you I know what I'm doing on this new album. For remember: Cream's 'Disraeli Gears' was recorded I believe in 3 days. But no. Howard's addition has only made the waters all that more murky.
"What are we doing?" he asks. As if we know. Before long, he's wondering where the excitement is. I'm having flashbacks. Etc. The song in question still THE SONG WHOSE TITLE SHALL NOT BE REVEALED. And believe me, if only I could write a song as good as this title!
So yeah, Herr H is in the other room supposedly building drums. But instead he plays me a track that sounds nothing like SP. "This is what I'm into." I point out there isn't a single guitar. "Exactly," he mimes, lips pursed. This, I guess, is my problem. Guitars.
But according to manager Pete Katsis, guitars are on the way back IN. And those Foo's just sold out Wrigley Field playing, you guessed it, loud guitars.
Personally, I'm with Howard, but not for the reasons he'd think. 'Cause I don't think guitars are the problem, nor do I think they're any solution.
Songs, I say, are king, and maybe that's because it's to my advantage to say so. And when I look around at what's 'happening': guitars, no guitars, kazoos, banjos, washtubs, and so on, it's the tune they're singing that makes the difference.
Sure, the public can duped with music production, and never more so than now. But I'll guess the half-wit songs don't last, and anyone singing 'whoa-e-whoa' goes to…
Pop heaven? No, no…
i jest. Start over. How about this: music production is like one's trendy clothes?
Ok, a bit boring and beige (subtle plug).
Where does this go? I'll tell you…
Rock and roll, spirit-wise, shall never die. But it's how one rocks that matters. And should you go about the same shite over and over and over, I believe there are tarpits that can't be seen; no matter how much the public celebrates that creative mediocrity. And this means you, if you consider yourself a consumer. And this doesn't mean you if you don't buy shite.
'Cause it's the buying or not buying that translates into 'votes' for the bean counters. And in rock and roll business, might is right, and right means nothing without commerce until your dead. At which point they'll harvest your corpse-catalog for something saccharine sweet; and so on…
DAY FOR NIGHT is, for now, a zombie walking. Avoiding light, and the soft rock that passes for rocka-rolla. Does that mean it's heavy or not heavy? NO. That means it's heavy of soul; as in rubber soul; plastic soul; or no soul. So if it lives, it'll live in the space between Howard's NoGuitarlandia and what was once my forte; now passed and passé. On that 3rd, middle lane; bleating unseen, unknown; and as yet unheard.
As previously stated, I was off in Euroland hawking the Pumpkin wares. And so in that I must confess that with all that talking I haven't felt like talking. But now I'm back, at the desk, ready to write more musicals, doomsicals, and Day 'Fer Nightacles.
Ah, DAY FOR NIGHT. Remember that record? That stop-starter that is fired anew? Yes, Herr Howard is back, but this time in a support role (for now). 'Cuz I just a'int ready to argue yet over aesthetic values versus pop. The album in mind, I feel, just beyond my grasp. And in my heart I want it to be more, but it keeps heading to shadowlandia…
Which is different with Portlandia in that there isn't a single beard or banjo in sight.
The kids have it, yeah, and they're alright; if they could right a tune that didn't make me want to slit my wrists from overjoy-overkill OR buy a car or hamburger. Pick 'yer poison, mate…
So, what's the list: CARDINAL RULE, FULLSAIL, BURNT ORANGE BLACK, CALX, SONG THAT SHALL NOT BE REVEALED, and that one that escapes me?
Judgement: not ye olde rock enough. That starts today with a new song called GODSPEED.
Berlin was fab, London swingin'. Did probably 40 interviews while there for MONUMENTS TO AN ELEGY. Said the same thing, too; again and again…
'Tommy? He was great!'
'Jeff's the man!'
Plus this nugget: 'All parties end. And disco always dies.'
But it was great to see and say hello to such legends as Boy George, Jim Kerr, Johnny Marr, and Nick Mason; all of whom I admire and respect for being: originals, pioneers, and cooler than cool. And that my friends supplants any generational need to define what can't be defined by today's success; or tomorrow's excuse.