Saturday, December 27, 2014

'Searching for Cioran' by Ilinca Zarifopol-Johnston.

Unfinished sympathy. First part is great. Cioran's youth in Rasjinari. But Ilinca Zarifopol passed away before she could finish the full biography. So, the rest is really some unfinished parts put together by her husband Kenneth R. Johnston. Two chapters about 'Romania's Transfiguration' and Cioran's so-called 'fascist' sympathies. And then there is the part about Ilinca visiting Emil in the hospital. An ailing old man with Alzheimer. Cringeworthy. It gets better when she travels herself to Romania. Not to find out stuff about Cioran, but to look for her father and her uncle Paul. It's all very sketchy. That's the part where i am now. She does write a lot about the republication of 'Romania's Transfiguration' in 1990. But Emil was not stupid. He quickly hurried to republish the book after the Romanian revolution in 1989. Opportunistic? She hardly makes that link though. Yes, in the 2nd part of the book. She plays on sentiment. But Cioran was never about 'sentiment'. Notes written by a woman in love. My conclusion is that we need a biography of his lifelong partner Simone Boué. She was the complicated part in the life of Cioran. Looking after the master with care for 40 years. For whatever reason. Love, maybe... Her story is a tragic one. She killed herself 2 years after his death. Drowned in the sea.

PS: Just skipped to Appendix 2 'Articles by Cioran Reflecting His Experiences In Germany', on E.M. Cioran's very outspoken and Nietzschean 'sympathy for a young Hitler' in 1933-1934. Shivers!!!! He was wrong! So wrong! And he knew it! What does the author want to proof by publishing this 'wrong' article though? In perspective: it was hard to see what was going to happen in 1933 and 1934. A lot of people stepped willingly or unwillingly into the mass hysteria of the moment as Cioran explained later as an apology. It was hard not to be swept away by the fascist tsunami that was about to come. But the fact that Cioran gave permission to republish the book in 1990, meant that all through the years he clung to the same ideas. So, no apologies...

You can forgive a young man for having these ideas in 1933-1934. You cannot forgive a skilled writer & thinker for sticking to the same ideas in 1990. Then it's indeed Tschüss, Emil.

'Searching for Cioran', by Ilinca Zarifopol-Johnson, edited by Kenneth R. Johnson, foreword by Matei Calinescu, Indiana University Press, 2009.

Saturday, December 13, 2014

My Favourite Albums of 2014.

Valerio Tricoli - 'Miseri Lares'

Antoine Chessex - 'Chamber Works'

NO BULLSHIT - tribute to Zbigniew Karkowski

Scott Walker + Sunn0))) - 'Soused'

David Sylvian + Franz Wright - 'There's a light...'

Franck Vigroux - 'Centaure'

Mica Levi - 'Under the skin' (soundtrack)

France Jobin - 'Infinitisemal'

Yvan Etienne - 'La Lueur'

Zbigniew Karkowski + Tetsuo Furudate - 'World As Will'

Gintas K - 'Old man tales'

Otomo Yoshihide Quartet

A Singing Comet

Kenney/Kang/Park - 'At Temple Gate'

A-Symmetry - 'I Am Life'

reissues: Jon Hassell, Fripp + Eno, Eyeless In Gaza,...

Thursday, November 27, 2014

‘There's a light that enters houses with no other house in sight’ by David Sylvian.

The voices deliver the strangest music nowadays. First we had the wonderful Scott Walker album with SunnO))) and now here is one by the great David Sylvian. Not enough suffering in his music, said the one about the other once. But here is some suffering anyway. 'There's a light...' is a collaboration with long suffering poet laureate Franz Wright. I know many fans from the first hour were appalled because it is not David reciting the words but the old man Wright. And it is poetry, not songs. What can I say? A difficult album. And that's mildly put. But we love 'difficult', don't we? Especially the last 20 minutes are very captivating... "If you liked being born, you will love dying..." Did you spot the change in tone in Franz Wright's voice towards the end of the album? The humoristic and playful is suddenly gone. A crack in his voice when he starts to sound utterly desperate and lonely. It's a breathtaking moment. The cleverness disappears. Human warmth slips in. The piece almost becomes 'emotional'.... It's the best part of the album. I thought I heard Dai Fujikura somewhere, but he is not on the album. Sylvian is not the one to sit still. He is continuously looking for new adventures and collaborations. This time it is Toshimaru Nakamura and veteran Otomo Yoshihide delivering the samples. Musically, the album even holds out without the poet's voice which comes unobtrusively in the way of the freeflowing brushes of music once in a while. I can enjoy David Sylvian's new album to a certain level, but I'm sure he has become some kind of muscian's musician. There are certain aspects of 'There's a light...' that will forever escape me. That's normal. Is it really necessary to know where every note every snippet comes from? The whole history of contemporary music that was crammed into one piece of music? I'm surely not the one looking to understand everything. BTW, I seem to be a poet's poet myself. I know all about it. The things I put into my poems will not necessarily be recognised by readers. Maybe only by connoisseurs. And then what? I don't expect anybody to fully understand what I've written. Dedicated DS fans will be chewing on this. Ha...

PS: One would hope that Scott and David will work together one day. At least here is the whimsical proof that there is a lot of suffering in David Sylvian's work anyway.

'Centaure' by Franck Vigroux on Cosmo Rhythmatic.

FRANCK VIGROUX - CENTAURE from dautrescordes on Vimeo.

Listening to the music of Franck Vigroux is a musical experience comparable to reading Cioran. It's intense! I was reading and rereading 'Le Lyrisme Absolu' by E.M. Cioran from his book 'Sur les Cimes du Désespoir' and then inadvertently I switched to listening to Franck Vigroux's new album on the brand new Berlin based label Cosmo Rhythmatic. I suddenly saw it before me and I immediately made the link. Like an epiphany. Vigroux in 'Tempest' cooly hunched over his instruments while Antoine Schmitt projects ever evolving, stellar algorhytmical projections on the videoscreen behind him. Amidst all the bad art being made in the name of Cioran, this seems to be the real thing. It felt like a total experience and the absolute lyricism we are looking for and that Cioran wrote about. Then after that I took a look at the stunning 'Croix' videos and I had to think about the words 'le lyrisme absolu est celui des derniers instants' from the same chapter... On his new EP 'Centaure' Vigroux even goes one step further: the noise, the abstraction, the experiment on 'Centaure', '2024' and 'Vesuve'... I don't know if you ever read 'Le Bain de Feu' by Cioran? It's about the most intense hair-raising philosophical text ever written. I feel like that too when I listen to the new album. Vigroux puts you head down in a scorching bath of fire. Vigroux is probably the most intense musician of the moment. But then, in comes Shapednoise to scrape together your remaining ashes with different abstract shapes and forms of rhythms. Vigroux never lets us down exploring this experimental way or that noise way, but 'Centaure' is surely the most powerful thing we heard from him since 'We (Nous Autres)'. Brilliant! Video by Gregory Robin.

Music by Franck Vigroux, Label Cosmo Rhythmatic,,

Wednesday, October 15, 2014

A-symmetry: I Am Life 2014 - Life 1.

life 1 - A-symmetry: I Am Life 2014 from agf Pro on Vimeo.

Here's a splendid video from A-symmetry, the collaborative project of Georgian based Natalie Tba Beridze and AGF (Antye Greie-Ripatti). The track is from their forthcoming album on Morr Music called 'I Am Life'.

Sunday, June 08, 2014

NO BULLSHIT - A Sonic Tribute to Zbigniew Karkowski (Bandcamp edition)

Friday, May 30, 2014

NO BULLSHIT - A Sonic Tribute To Zbigniew Karkowski (1958-2013)

'NO BULLSHIT - A Sonic Tribute to Zbigniew Karkowski (1958-2013)' is ready for release. It's an audio DVD of 5 hours commemorating one of the greatest experimental artists of all times. The piece I sent for the DVD was made together with Korean experimental artist Una Lee and is called 'MUTATIONS'. It was loosely based on 'Mutation', a relatively quiet soundpiece by the late great Japanese sound artist Aube and by Zbigniew Karkowski. They are two giants of noise music who passed away last year. The spoken poem itself is a mashup of parts of Armand Marie Leroy's book 'Mutants : on the form, varieties and errors of the human body'. For more information about the upcoming release check here:

Saturday, May 24, 2014

Pink Floyd @ the UFO Club London 1967 - Excerpt from 'DOPE' by Flame Schon & Sheldon Rochlin.

Flame Schon & Sheldon Rochlin made the delicious 'DOPE' film in 1967 with rare images of early Pink Floyd in the UFO club in London. We worked with this 60s legendary filmmaker on a brand new videopoem with sounds by Una Lee and a rework by Gintas K. It's an hommage to the rippling still Mylar images by our mutual friend, the late poet, artist & filmmaker Ira Cohen. In the end, we made something different...

Tuesday, April 29, 2014

PARIAH - All my European friends have Asian girlfriends (copy/paste for John Duncan) - video

" it's / as real as anything else / so it's just as absurd to critizice

anyone with such a limit as being / personally / or / socially /

/ weak / "

(John Duncan, excerpt from an interview in the digital version 'MicroBionic - Radical Electronic Music & Sound Art in the 21st Century' by Thomas Bey William Bailey, A Belsona Books publication, 2012)

Thursday, March 27, 2014

Antoine Chessex: "Ritournelle Fulgurante (for Leo Mingrone)".

Antoine Chessex: "Ritournelle Fulgurante (for Leo Mingrone)" from Physicofsounds on Vimeo.

Antoine Chessex special on Saturday 3 May between 6pm and 8pm on university Radiocampusbruxelles. Tracks will be featured from the new MONNO album, Chamber Works, Dust, Errances, Multiple (live at Cafe OTO) and lots more...

Monno - III (from 'Cheval Ouvert').

Is everybody already running wild about the new Swans song 'A Little God In Our Hands'? Haha... Me, I'm more impressed by this new album by the combo Monno. Here's a crazy & ultraspeedy track produced by Roli Mossiman, the former Swans drummer....

Saturday, March 08, 2014

'Idioticon' by Kris Verdonck, words by Peter Wullen.

'Idioticon', videopoem by Kris J. Y. Verdonck. The soundtrack is 'Koladé Spirit' by David Toop, with kind permission. 'Koladé Spirit' is a track from 'Mondo Black Chamber', the new David Toop compilation album on Sub Rosa. The original was included on 'Konstantin Raudive - The Voices of the Dead'. A Raudive celebration including unpublished material by Scanner, Paul D. Miller aka DJ Spooky/That subliminal kid, Calla, Lee Ranaldo (of Sonic Youth), Ensemble, Ramdom Inc., David Toop, Carl Michael von Hausswolff and Brett Dean. They have all composed an exclusive piece of music based on the Raudive material. It goes from a close examination of the material itself (CM Von Hausswolff, Lee Ranaldo) to a more evocative mood (Calla, Scanner, dj Spooky). The last piece, for viola solo, is a global homage to all the explorators of the unknown.

Friday, February 07, 2014

Two completely new Sappho poems discovered.

[ … ] But you always chatter that Charaxus is coming, His ship laden with cargo. That much, I reckon, only Zeus Knows, and all the gods; but you, you should not Think these thoughts, Just send me along, and command me To offer many prayers to Queen Hera That Charaxus should arrive here, with His ship intact, And find us safe. For the rest, Let us turn it all over to higher powers; For periods of calm quickly follow after Great squalls. They whose fortune the king of Olympus wishes Now to turn from trouble to [ … ] are blessed and lucky beyond compare. As for us, if Larichus should [ … ] his head And at some point become a man, Then from full many a despair Would we be swiftly freed.

Wednesday, January 29, 2014

'Black Canary' by Chris H Lynn, voice: Una Lee, words: Peter Wullen.

Black Canary from chris h lynn on Vimeo.

The aim of a poet is not to win prizes. To be famous. To be popular. Even not to produce books. That's left for the others to decide. The aim of a poet is to leave as much traces as possible during a lifetime. Like seeds we blow in the wind. Like water we flow in all directions. We project fire. We consume everything before we are consumed ourselves.

Wednesday, January 22, 2014

'MUTATIONS' by Una Lee & Peter Wullen.

We have our contribution to the 'NO BULLSHIT' tribute to ZK. It's loosely based on the piece 'Mutation' by ZK + Aube. I wrote the cutup poem 'MUTATIONS' as a starting point. Una Lee created the startling soundscape with sounds she found in Belfast. There's a dramatic breaking point in words and sounds in the middle of the sound poem which makes it breathtaking. It's a blast. It's LOUD. It's NO BULLSHIT....

Saturday, January 11, 2014

Interview in Meander.

"Een verhaaltje vertellen is een oeroude drift, maar het is helaas niet meer van deze postpostpostmoderne tijd. Om een groot publiek te bereiken moet je nu eenmaal een verhaaltje vertellen. Dat zie je ook in de gedichten van de jonge generatie van dichters. Er wordt weinig afgeweken. Maar ik wil daar resoluut van af."