So despite my long absence from these parts Nate has tagged me with this very fun meme about music counterfactuals. Who would I like to have another album from? and who would I like to see live? with time machines available so they don’t have to reform and splutter out again tragically. And most fun of all, who would I like to see get together in a supergroup? Here is an interim report on the last question, breaking Nate’s rule about conciseness but picking up where he left off with the inspired Fugazi vs. Massive Attack.
Jimi Hendrix, Can and Brian Eno
Eno’s not exactly a guitar hero, but he is a great curator of the guitar solo. See Roxy Music’s ‘In Every Dream Home…’ and ‘Bogus Man’, his own ‘Baby’s on Fire’ and ‘Third Uncle’, and Talking Heads’ Remain in Light. Here’s how it happens: in 1971 Jimi and the Can boys jam for three days and four nights as house band in a GI coffeeshop in Berlin. Three weeks later Jimi’s found dead in a London bathtub and Damo Suzuki is a Jehovah’s Witness. Meanwhile, back in Vietnam, the frag rate starts to climb… A few years later Eno visits Bowie and Iggy Pop in Berlin. Their dealer says, ‘hey, I have some tapes you might be interested in’. Eno retires to the studio for four days and three nights with Suzuki’s discarded I Ching and a deck of Oblique Strategies. The rest is history.
Tom Waits, his wife Kathleen Brennan, and Einsturzende Neubauten
With found percussion, naturally. Lyrical themes include the collapsing, rebuilding and slow decay of various vintages of architecture; late 1940s letters written home by GIs stationed in Berlin to their wives; the last days of Weimar. Some covers of Brecht/Weill classics, including ‘Mack the Knife’.
Patti Smith and Television
This one kind of really happened since Tom Verlaine hooked up with Smith and played on and co-wrote some of Horses. But I love that guitar and those lyrics and want more, about a thousand dances under a marquee moon on Redondo Beach with that chick Gloria.
Mark E. Smith and Mouse on Mars
Wildman of the people post-punk extraodinaire with gentle German electronic twiddlers?? The Great MES belts out borderline schizophrenic rants and boasts about wandering the city and what he had for dinner, while the whimsical Westphalians ramp up the volume and the discordance and sometimes just let the machines take over. It would never happen… or would it?
Michael Jackson, Paul McCartney and Throbbing Gristle
Live at Disneyland. Heal the world.