original photograph by gaolst
Audio excursions your editor has recently enjoyed.
Quiet Night Falling Moon
•This Patch of Sky / The Immortal, The Invisible • • A Fire Through the Dark • amazon * •
Warren Ellis – Broken Strategy
Warren Ellis is an English author of comics, novels, and television.
“This year has been about four projects for me: the experimental “augmented reality” comic SVK, the talk on “digital cities” and history that became the forthcoming short volume GHOSTBOOK, the crime novel GUN MACHINE and an unannounced graphic novel with the working codename “Project Z.” All four projects were, in some sense, all about the same things: hauntings and invisible maps. What follows is a slice of the soundtrack that’s been accompanying the writing of these works.”• † † † A Brief Interview with ghoulnextdoor • • • When did you realize you were creating a series of mixes that ultimately became a quintet?
Initially I had only planned to make an eerie, unsettling mix for Halloween time, just one. Something somber and ghostly, wistful and haunting. That uncanny sort of melody that causes the hairs to rise at the back of one’s neck, that song of deja-vu, that moment of thrilling, exquisite fear before something happens that, you know, genuinely scares that shit out of you.
It’s probably sort of trite or obvious, but horror film scores and soundtracks were my immediate sources of inspiration for this seasonal project and in searching for the type of music I had in mind I came across so many gorgeous pierces I knew that I could never fit them all into one mix! This spawned a second mix, and by the time I finished the third, I figured I’d make it challenging for myself and do one more. I ended up making a fifth because I was just feeling ornery, I suppose! By the time I was through it just made sense (to me, anyhow) to share them as a darkly seasonal series.• • Could there possibly be too many lone, melancholic piano pieces in the world? Will there ever come a point when, collectively, as a species, we will all say, “No more sad piano pieces, ever.” Do you fear that day more than any other?
No —never! As far as I am concerned there will never be enough of these mournful, moody sounds! Every musician/composer/piano tinkler who ever was or ever will be, from here to eternity, is going to have a gloomy day, a pensive mood, a grim bout of angst, etc. — and I will always be eager to hear their artistic interpretation of these bleak, joyless times. There is something about “cheery” music that I find profoundly irritating, it really grates on my nerves! I suppose my spirits are soothed by dreary tunes; how selfish am I, that I take comfort in the product of someone else’s melancholia! • Ghostly Possession by lyon – Howard Lyon – CGHUB • Your mixes are hardly ever light-hearted fare. But these are unremittingly dark. What was happening when you made them? • Oh, I guess like anyone else, I’ve got my rough patches and dark times. I try not to wallow or feel to sorry for myself, I mean I am not the only one to have suffered heartache or to see future plans fizzle and fail, right? There’s really no point to mooning about, my problems are no more special or significant than the next persons….and I feel almost as if talking about them overmuch presents them in a light that I’d rather not. I am not even sure what I mean by that… I guess I am just prefacing my statements with a “yes, I’ve been down and dark but these are not the worst things that have ever happened to a person and I am perfectly aware of that!”
At the end this past September I packed what I had left of the little life I had made for myself up north and traveled back down the coast to settle in the South, where I am originally from. And without going into too many details, the year before that had been exceptionally difficult – which is what prompted the move. I got rid of almost everything I owned – 15 years worth of stuff – and only moved with what I could fit into my small car. Said goodbye to the people who had become part of my life, who almost defined my existence. Became increasingly intimidated and terrified of a life that I had not really planned for. This culminated in bouts of despondency and heavy-hearted funks and a bittersweet outlook that I’ve yet to shake entirely. • designer’s portrait by *oprisco • When I started putting these five mixes together, right before I left, I was in bit of a state of mourning for all that I left behind that never quite came to pass. And alternating between euphoria and fright and sorrow and maybe a bit of hope – I guess I sought out and took comfort in the sounds that spoke to me on these levels. It is really little wonder then, that the outcome might be exceptionally dark… Ω