<= 2002.05.09

2002.05.11 =>

the will of its inquisitor

One must not let the First Noble Truth obscure the Third, and I feel it would be far too dangerous to admit that the Heart's only possible trajectory is from Pleasure to Excuse to Anodyne (though it rings true, doesn't it?), that the best we could hope for is to die wanting nothing—but I am perverse, and the weeping philosopher is ingrained in me so deeply that I may never get him out.

At one time everything seemed absolute; sadness was epic, inherently unbearable. But no. Time dulls its edge, and you start to realize that sadness, like gravity, is actually woven into the fabric of spacetime, that so long as you regulate your dose and allow yourself only a small amount (arbitrarily small, an epsilon) at any given moment (dx/dt), over time you can ingest a staggering amount and still walk on.

At this point I should talk about last night's Guided by Voices show, which certainly was fun. I had no idea that they were such a Midwestern bar band when playing live, but there was Bob Pollard onstage without an instrument so that at any break in the song, no matter how short, he could behave like the world's most unlikely rock star—swig his beer, get someone in the audience to light his cigarette, twirl his microphone on its cord, pump his fist in the air. I haven't been to a show this raw and this enjoyable in a long time. Crank the power chords! Pass the whiskey! Who's more drunk, the audience or the band? Who cares? It's rock and roll! The set was long, and since the songs only lasted two minutes they must have had thirty or forty all told. For some reason, the one that really got the crowd going was "Cut-Out Witch," and after that it was all over. Of course they played "I am a Scientist." The closer was a loud, loud cover of the Who's "Baba O'Riley," of all things.

These cover recordings I'm posting are from maybe a month ago, when I had some spare time. There are first albums—and Elvis Costello's My Aim is True is one of these—that get their greatness from their remarkable fidelity to the emotions of adolescence, coupled with the sort of fluency that every adolescent wants: an intelligent way to express the id. Mystery Dance (mp3, 1.86 mB) hits it right on.

 

<= 2002.05.09

2002.05.11 =>

up (2002.05)

The Warm South
The Roof Rat Review