Saturday, January 22, 2005

While eternity cycles wildly inside me

Download: ANTONY & THE JOHNSONS "You Stand Above Me (live)"

Ladies and gentlemen, we just may have the best record of the year already -- I Am A Bird Now by Antony & the Johnsons (and kudos to Kurt Reighley for writing the best press release in aaaaaaaages, yo.) First heard of Antony a little over three years ago when I went back to New York for the closing party for Tompkins Square Books and to attend CMJ for my then-employer. I was staying with my pal Joe Budenholzer, one of my favorite people ever, who records as Backworld and his new band in Glasgow is this super rad Roxy Music-ish affair -- shit I forget their name -- anyway the point is Joe couldn't shut up how amazing Antony was and how he was fully integrated into my scene of musician pals there and Joe played me the first Antony CD which had come out on not World Serpent but some label like that and I liked it but I didn't really totally get it. It's music you have to listen to a few times to really "get," I think.

Then 9-11 happened and with Joe I ran into Antony that day or the next day I don't remember which, and what a weird circumstance to meet someone in. We all huddled in cafes crying and trying not to think about what had happened while also totally trying to but it was like just so hard to even understand, then trying to figure out what to do 'cause we all wanted to do something, and once we learned they didn't need untrained help down at the site and they didn't need any more blood since the lines to give had been so long from the start, then we all felt like fuck, why are we artists and writers and shit -- why can't we be firemen and doctors and stuff? I still feel like some big part of me is still back there, on that day, standing on the corner looking at the smoke, trying to figure out what the fuck (I SLEPT through the first towers' collapse, having been out until like 4AM with Bill Bronson -- Joe tried to awaken me but that's not easy) . Anyway, this really has nothing to do with Antony and the Johnsons, does it? Sorry.

Recorded live at St. Olave's Church in London in 2002, at a show done with Current 93, this lovely little song is from what seems to be a very out of print EP that I wish I had but don't, so thanks, Soulseek. Antony's new album is total visionary shit, think Neutral Milk Hotel meets Nina Simone with touches of Blake and JT LeRoy or something -- no that sounds ridiculous. Anyway, this is the real deal and it's so nice to be this excited about somebody and not care if I missed the boat or not. See, as someone who writes about music it's so tempting to get all high on being the first to discover something (Matos opined that this must be the critic's cocaine in response to a question poised the other week by Sasha) or to pretend like you were -- God knows I've done both in my day. Sayyyyyy, did I ever tell you how Galaxie 500 would be nowhere without me??!!! Ohhh, little brother, we are in a messss.

10 Comments:

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mike, you have got to be kidding. this is awful. really. is this some kind of joke?
v.

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Blogger Luuc said...

Just great, thanks a lot for this. Ordered both cd's, very excited. Did I say thanks ?!

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