With the death toll from the southern Asia earthquake continuing to rise each day, it's invaluable to remember how forces far beyond each and every one of us can alter the shape of your life in a moment. It seems that Nature itself is really the weapon of mass destruction that we cannot capture within our grasp. Christmas and the New Year are always a time of reflection and yet it's with an overall sense of optimism that I slip into 2005, with a past year of adventures, travels, love and inevitable loss. It's been a time of creative restless energy, collaborations and performances all around the globe. A year in which I've happily expanded my friendships and partnerships all over the map and continued to challenge myself beyond expectation.
I've just returned from Moscow with sub zero temperatures, the largest bootleg market I've ever experienced in my life and a chance to purchase all those crooked progressive rock CDs at bargain prices. A very entertaining show, Light Turned Down, with D-Fuse (http://www.dfuse.com) was the focus of my trip, though archaic flight systems and delayed planes meant that much of our time was spent in a detention center style hotel on the outskirts of Prague, where we were allowed one meal and one telephone call. I'm certain that prison offers superior conditions!
A trip to the picturesque and rainy city of Catania in Sicily in December also offered the chance to premiere material for my forthcoming collaboration with Rolf & Fonky on Persistence Records (http://www.persistencebit.com). Entitled Tinnito, it is a pulse raising, radioactive boogie record, which should be out soon. Perfect to work off those extra pounds you may have put around your waist and hips over the festive period.
Githead finally has its very own website (http://www.githead.com) You can read all about our antics, read the surreal lyrics and soon download some recordings exclusively available at this location. We are currently daily in the studio completing our debut album for release before the summer and then will be hitting the road in a traditional rock and roll manner soon after. Get ready to rock, though in an arty and funky style naturally.
Europa 25 (http://www.britishcouncil.org/brussels-europa25.htm) my alternative National Anthem for Europe, has been moving along handsomely, with radio features across the BBC about it and countless requests for CD copies. Don't forget to either download the entire project for free at the British Council website, or while stocks last, request your free hard copy to be mailed to your very own letterbox. Simply contact Roland Gulliver (Roland.Gulliver@britishcouncil.be) whilst you remember.
My little gift this month is a free download of the DJ Dangermouse mix of my Nemesis soundtrack for Random Dance. It was originally a very limited collaborative release, long before his star began to shine with his controversial Grey Album (http://www.illegal-art.org/audio/grey.html). Download it and enjoy. Speaking of which, 2005 will begin with a trip to Los Angeles at the end of January to perform with Random Dance at UCLA, catch a suntan and spend some weak dollars (sorry, but it's great for European's shopping in the USA), and will continue with all manner of projects, performances and even more CD releases throughout the year.
Have a fantastic 2005!!
::: listen :::
Manorexia: The Radiolarian (foetus.org)
David Grubbs: A Guess at the Riddle (Drag City)
Brazzaville: Hastings Street (Zakat)
Lawrence English: Transit (Cajid)
::: read :::
Philip Brophy: 100 Modern Soundtracks (BFI)
Jonathan Coe: The Rotters Club (Viking)
Pierre Huyghe: Monograph (Skira)
Catherine Lupton: Chris Marker (Reaktion)
RT-32 Acoustic Space Lab documentary DVD
Fado, Perdigão Queiroga, Portugal
Deconstructing Harry, Woody Allen, USA
Black Angel, Takashi Ishii, Japan
::: exhibitions :::
A cultural history of the voice as a medium
ZKM | Museum for Contemporary Art
19 September - 30 January 2005
A comprehensive group show exploring the human voice in art. Featuring works by Judith Barry, Joseph Beuys, Christian Boltanski, Marcel Broodthaers, VALIE EXPORT, Asta Gröting, Pierre Huyghe, Golan Levin, Katarina Matiasek & Scanner, Tony Oursler, Dieter Roth, Gerhard Rühm and others