02 giugno 2020

E' stato chiamato il cantante dei Pixies, Black Francis, a dar forza al brano Die! Die! Die! - in sintonia straordinaria con l'esasperazione e l'ira dei tempi attuali - che fa da apripista all'imminente Metal, Meat And Bone, ma la furia richiestagli dai Residents per l'interpretazione lo ha messo un po' in difficoltà: "It was pretty intense. I almost felt like I wasn’t going to be able to do justice or something. It was so dark, I didn’t know whether or not I was going to be able to pull it off. So after I got over that first hump of shyness or whatever, I was able to kind of get into the murdering kind of frantic mode. You know, it’s been a while since I’ve recorded something so frantic and angry-sounding." Per utile confronto, sul lato A del singolo c'è la supposta versione originale di Dyin’ Dog, ovvero Alvin Snow. Chi è fortunato ne trova una copia presso Psychofon Records, altrimenti c'è il video, eloquente anch'esso: https://ResidentsDieDieDie

Avant-garde collective the Residents recently teamed up with the Pixies’ Black Francis to craft a searing indictment of U.S. President Donald Trump: the fiery cut, Die! Die! Die!. The video for that song is filled with imagery of the coronavirus, the president and “666,” otherwise known as the number of the beast. The Residents claim that the song was originally written by a long lost bluesman named Alvin Snow - a.k.a. Dyin’ Dog - in the mid-Seventies. The version they created with Francis, then, is a cover. “The group felt the song’s relevance was more compelling than ever, but they pondered the writer’s motivation. What betrayal damaged Snow so deeply that he wished to see his transgressor die?” the group wrote in a statement. They continued: “Then, without warning, the world was quickly captivated and consumed by the Covid-19 health crisis. And as the pandemic grew, eagerly enveloping an entire civilization both physically and emotionally, one voice stood out from the cacophony generated by a world gravely stricken with suffering and pain. And for the Residents, something about that voice was familiar… not the actual voice itself but its tone… larger than life, sneering and utterly empty of empathy, love and compassion. And in that moment, almost 50 years of reflection back to the Seventies was complete. Die! Die! Die! became Now! Now! Now!. A perfect parallel with its all too eager protagonist snidely and indifferently turning his back on a world whose approval he so desperately sought.”

01 giugno 2020

A rinfrescare la memoria a proposito della Brass Band di Mike Westbrook a cavallo degli anni Settanta e Ottanta aiuta anche la ripubblicazione - però solo in digitale, tramite Bandcamp - del doppio album Polydor tratto a suo tempo dai concerti parigini del maggio 1981 presso La Chapelle des Lombards. In formazione con Mike e Kate Westbrook c'erano Phil Minton, Chris Biscoe, Alan Wakeman e Dave Barry: The Paris Album.


31 maggio 2020

Come da non perdere è il documentario Music in Progress-Mike Westbrook, jazz composer prodotto da Charles Mapleston per l'Arts Council of Great Britain e Malachite nel 1978, ora in visione nella rassegna The WestbrookJazz Moving Picture Show curata da Chris Topley presso il sito web dei Westbrook. Protagonista è la storica Brass Band di Mike, con Phil Minton, Kate Westbrook, Dave Chambers, Paul Rutherford e Trevor Tomkins; nel filmato si vedono in azione anche Nisar Ahmad Khan, Brian Godding, Roger Potter, Alan Jackson, Paul Nieman, Alan Sinclair, Alan Downie, Trevor Barber e David MacRae.

"Tender love", "The fields", "Piano link", "Wheels go round", "Lady Howard's coach" by Mike Westbrook; "Holborne suite" by A. Holborne, arr Paul Rutherford; "Wheel of fortune" by Mike Westbrook, Phil Minton, John Fox, sung by Phil Minton; "Bartlemy Fair" by Mike Westbrook, Peter Stark, Roger Savage, sung by Phil Minton; "Serpent maigre" (trad.), arr Dave Chambers; "God bless the child" by Arthur Herzog Jr, Billie Holiday, sung by Kate Westbrook; "Kanonen song" by Kurt Weill, Berthold Brecht, sung by Paul Rutherford, Kate Westbrook; "Wheels go round" by Mike Westbrook, Phil Minton, sung by Phil Minton; "I see thy form" by Mike Westbrook, William Blake, arr Adrian Mitchell, sung by Phil Minton; "Hot jamboree" (trad.), arr Mike Westbrook.