Not Not a Negation Concatenation
Please note: MP3s are only kept online for a short time, and if this entry is from more than a couple of weeks ago, the music probably won't be available to download any more.


Angels of Light - "Untitled Love Song"

Imagine you are being serenaded by a lover. It's approaching sunset and you two were out all day - walking, holding hands, eating food from each other's plates. Not a word was uttered between you. On the wild lawn in behind your home, your lover sits you down, pulls out a ukulele; he or she whistles and is joined by a band. There's a Hawaiian with a slide guitar and is that Dabney Coleman on bass? In the background there's a drummer in a white suit and a Bermuda hat. He's laying his brushes on a snare drum, he's lightly kicking a kick drum, he's clapping two high-hat cymbals together. By parachute, an accordion falls slowly from the sky into your lap.

What a lovely song your lover is playing - a love song, and for you. You squeeze your squeezebox and sing along. Except that there's obviously something wrong. Your lover hasn't looked at you once, is clearly distracted. Not from the song, which seems to be at least as much a reflection of the distraction as it is of your lover's love for you, but from his or her affections. The source of this distraction? Perhaps pressing chores or the pressures of work or something small and practical that slipped your lover's mind? Dabney Coleman shakes his head 'no'. No, perhaps he's sinned - killed someone or thieved. Dabney Coleman won't dignify that with an answer. Maybe then it's existential and metaphysical concerns, questions of theodicy or even godlessness and of the human body and what, if anything, beyond. Dabney Coleman plays the notes b-i-n-g-o on his bass.

Angels of Light - "Black River Song"

Six years later, and now that the tenderness has receded, the otherworldly romanticism gone, the metaphysical obsessing taken on new dimensions, you think maybe you shouldn't have married your lover. Sometimes your spouse asks you to play chess and you think this might be an opportunity to reform a connection, but then, inevitably, he or she plays the indefensible English Opening and brings his or her queen out eccentrically early. The lover you once had is no longer, and only the thinker, however opaque, remains. Still your spouse serenades, though you no longer think this is for you. The imprecision of love has given way to the exactitude of heaviosity; the hardness that first appeared in the eyes is now instantiated in brutal riffs; the melodicism that once carried questions, discarded for a purer discourse on the corporeal and the transcendent.

[Buy 2001's How I Loved You, the new We Are Him]

Posted by Jordan at September 26, 2007 4:53 PM
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Sean Michaels is the founder of Said the Gramophone. He is a writer, critic and author of the theremin novel Us Conductors. Follow him on Twitter or reach him by email here. Click here to browse his posts.

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