Sunday, January 27, 2008

Armageddon/Pearly Gates

I’ll probably sound like an obsessive obscurantist, but there’s this moment in this song called Sometime World on this album by Wishbone Ash called Argus. Upto the point this moment arrives the song is a fairly stately balladic effort, vague lyrics interspersed with some ‘70s guitar. Around the two minute mark cymbals are rattled, voices fade and the song appears to wrap up. But then guitars are heard again in the distance, this time much faster. And the bass starts…

There is no bass line in all of rock ‘n roll like this one. It comes careening in out of nowhere and just moves up and down, up and down the scale, each individual chord distinct and rich. The band takes this as a cue to go nuts around it for about three minutes; they could have spent thirty and it would still have been interesting. Its unlike any bass line you’ve ever heard. It can be played solo, you can put a piano in the background, or guitars, or a fucking brass band - the effect would be the same. It sounds simultaneously unhinged and logical as clockwork. It can be played when Armageddon finally comes or when one is nearing the pearly gates. It makes you wish it was being played behind John Coltrane, so he could have improvised around it. It makes you want to play it yourself, even if you can’t play bass. It makes you go “Do do do do do do” because you can’t play any damn instrument, and you can’t really sing either, but there’s no other way to convey the brilliance of what you’ve just heard to your puzzled friend at the other end of the telephone line. It makes you want to stop reading this article and download the damn thing so that you can write back and tell me that you’ve heard a thousand better bass lines. Go ahead. I doubt I’ll agree, but will still feel content in the knowledge that I’ve done my bit towards making this world a better place.

Wednesday, January 23, 2008

Hikaru, raised with love

8 months back I was a Research Executive (hushed voices heard saying over power lunches "He has it in him to be the best we've seen here since, i don't know, 2003...")

Then, 3 months ago, I became a Research Associate (voices echoing in the corridors of power "He has that indefinable quality thing going for him. He must be groomed")

Today i find out that I have become an Associate Research Manager

If you're startled how somehow can move up the corporate ladder with such astonishing rapidity, you really shouldn't be. My designation hasn't changed since the day I started working here. They've just re-designated the designation.

And yeah, no pay rise.

Go figure.

Tuesday, January 15, 2008

Haiku Blues

Does the man become the work?
Or does the work become the man?

Its worth considering

Becoming my work
would necessitate
my turning into
a zombie of death
or a corporate stooge
or, even worse, an unoriginal
or, worst of all, an unoriginal corporate stooge who is also a zombie of death

Whereas my work
becoming me
would transform
into something
which would find sense in the Deleuzian time-image analysis and its relation to Tarkovsky's Zerkalo
and would fall
in the general sonic environment
of punk rock