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.

Published in: on 12 September, 2008 at 10:13 am  Comments (2)  

Scene in a Honolulu courtroom

Last Tuesday, September 2, in the court of District Judge Helen Gillmor:

Justice Department attorney Andrew Smith: OK, let’s assume that there was a NEPA [National Environmental Protection Act] obligation, and maybe there’s a NEPA document out there, maybe there’s not. But we don’t even need to get there. Plaintiffs’ complaint says they have to be injured by this project. Their only claim to injury…

Judge Gillmor: … is that the world might blow up, and so we shouldn’t get concerned about that. You’re right. Why was I even considering it? Mr. Smith, I mean, I really find that, you know, I don’t know if there’s anything to this case, but that’s just not a great direction to be going.

Smith: I’m not following you. I mean, if their only claim to injury is that the world’s …

Gillmor: That they might die.

Smith: Right.

Gillmor: Yes.

Smith: So they have to show that that’s a credible injury. Is it actually going to happen? I can’t just go into federal court and say, you know, ‘the United States is participating with Israel to launch a nuclear missile, satellite that has nuclear material in it, and that nuclear material might land on my house in Albuquerque. They didn’t do NEPA. I have standing.’ That’s what this case is about.

Gillmor: I understand what you just said, that hypothetical, but that’s not his [Wagner’s] hypothetical. His hypothetical … I mean, and you know, his hypothetical is that the world would be made into a, you know, hard iron rock, which is different than ‘I might be an unintended casualty of something that’s happening half around the world – way around the world, but the person next door wouldn’t be.’

Published in: on 10 September, 2008 at 7:32 pm  Leave a Comment