Friday, March 18, 2011

MacArthur's Park is Melting in Mark

Welcome to Friday, my Puddlers. The title of the post is a reference to this song, which I thought of because of the weather and my general nature of psychedelia. It is an absolutely beautiful day out there so I recommend that you haul that TV through the back window of your apartment, house or house-boat and find some sun and watch Day 2 of the NCAA Tournament on TV, while outside.  That is the American Dream after all is it not? Maybe get a burger wrapped in bacon and wrapped in lamb with a side of spicy waffle fries to go alongside it. A little beer? Some High Life maybe?

Anyway, since its Friday, we have Mr. Mark Jack (of Forest City fame) back in its regularly scheduled slot. And the changing of the seasons have Mr. Jack on top of his game as usual. So, without further ado, here is your favorite rhetorician of the road:

Just A Short One

Mark Jack

Just a short one, to ease you back from Forest City bliss…calm, slow, we have so much.

Strange, large events in the world since I’ve been gone from this page, and my understanding is soft and unsure. I feel a mushy dumbness hindering a more emotional response, and I remain only minorly excited or devastated, depending on the state of the East, middle and far, or where I look or listen. In a sea of troubles I hate my job, but then that just speaks to my overall health and I am only now returning from an inactive spate, literarily, and am attempting to find correspondence between my hours of observation and language. So far my progress is halting and clumsy. I have been listening morosely to an ambient album of sorrowful beauty by William Basinski, called The Disintegration Loops. I listen to this only when I am attempting a consciousness of a mood that while sincerely felt, is not so easily reified by conceptualized repetition. Thus, in beginning to think on this album I realize that another album has played a greater role in my life as of late.

Another William. William Onyeabor’s Tomorrow.

This guy is fucking incredible. There is not much info on him out there but that of course doesn’t detract from the pure, joyful funk. In Tomorrow, the synthesizer is wielded with a skill that speaks to the amazing proliferation of analogue synthesizers that were so completely used as to betray a childish glee. The sounds bounce around a great Nigerian funk beat and one of the better collections of bass lines I’ve ever heard. Volumes lift and fade sporadically but musically, as if, as another recently said while I played the album, Onyeabor sat and rode the faders during mixing. I can easily imagine this guy
bouncing around, playful at the controls of any electronic. Beyond the music, which is a difficult thing to say, his lyrics are amazing, simple but amazing. On Tomorrow, the title song, Onyeabar has a strange, positive sense of fatalism, twisting the often depressing assertion that no one knows what will happen in the future into a reason to “work hard.” Other examples of ethical lyricism can be found in the song “Why Go to War”, which is, by its title fairly obvious, but contains a great line that refuses to simple assert a weakly argued call for peace and instead, twists, again, an old negativity, eye for an eye, into a positive.

The weathers becoming springy, and even though the world is falling apart, we can squeeze a bit of enjoyment out of it. Now I’m going to the park.

No one knows tomorrow.