I just went for a walk, and I found these songs.
I saw a tree shaken by the wind furious, its branches stretching feeble into the air like the bony hands of an emaciated white witch begging for a miracle from the elements. A trembling ray of sun was granted, and in the pool of light it created there was a glittering, but for an instant. I found a small stone of a green hue lying on the grass at the foot of this tree, which I put to my ear like it was a seashell far away from home, lonely.
This is what I heard.
Perhaps the echo of a melancholy tale whispered into the green stone, sad surrogate for the ears of a lover, a long time ago, buried into the earth with other sediments, every single one of them hurting to tell a story. But this is the one I found, only because a finger of light pointed me in its direction. I put the stone in my pouch and walked away from the tree, I looked back afterwards and saw it standing uncertain in the grey distance, like a mourner grieving silent at a funeral for dead memories.
The sky stretched wide populated by a tumultuous army of clouds. I surveyed this battlefield from a vantage point at the summit of the smooth hill, and commanded my forces with a stick like the ghost of Napoleon, surrounded by a squad of scarred hussars, or a deranged orchestra director trying to harness the crazed winds into a symphony.
We fought to the last man, I remember with fondness a renegade corsair which sailed redoubtable towards the enemy lines, a lightning bolt fractured the sky when it crashed against their mighty formation. Repelled every time, its crew scanned the daunting opposition for a crack, grim eyed and dry lipped like mathematicians chasing after the tail of that elusive variable that would solve the ultimate equation. Defiant and proud they howled and roared, pulling ropes, unfolding sails, mopping blood from the deck and loading cannons, busy aides making their lady presentable for a date with the maker, one date for which she was running late.
They sank to find what they they were going to find, and this is what they sang as they dissolved into the mysteries beyond.
I walked into the woods, but my path was interrupted by a forbidding fence of black barbed wire. I walked around its perimeter searching for some hole or gate, to no avail. I eventually came upon the fallen, rotting tree where I had started my circumnavigation, and accepted that if I was to continue this way, I would have to climb over spikes wicked like badly shaven hairs bristling demonic jowls, and this kiss would spill my blood. I was pondering upon what to do when I noticed the strange pattern in the fence. Odd objects, dead birds and flowers of faded colours, yellowed carcasses, mysterious debris lay impaled in it like notes purposefully arranged in the rigorous reticle of a music score.
I noted down those signs into a crumpled piece of paper which when reproduced into a player piano gave me the following song, and I present it to you now.
This is both a message and a symbol of what must lay in the misty highlands beyond that fence, beautiful corruption I should avoid visiting now, least I never be able to return to this side of the world again.
The moon had spread silvery fingers over the woods when I found myself treading the ground of a cemetery with gravestones raising in crooked angles as if they were standing on tiptoe so as to better behold that stranger leaving a trail of comically white footsteps in a soil the consistency of ash, what began on stone continued pale bone inside the mouldy coffin down beneath. A crow croaked from its turret on the trees above and jumped into the still air drawing the silhouette of a crow on the white moon a beacon in the blackness of the night, and I saw less for an instant.
At the end of the cemetery stood a cabin and inside it a pile of books shrouded in dust, I went through their crumbling pages, my fingers tracing down family lines like a shadow lagging behind death, turning them into dust erasing the memories of those who had been born and lived and loved and hated and come to rest under this ground, still together and guarded in their sleep by silent inhabitants of the woods who would never forget, I am giving you their song now.
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Medicine and Duty are a fucking legend. Their new album, Flags and Cannons is the best yet. They will be playing in Le Malterie in Lille on the 22nd of March with John Fucking Sinclair. Finally someone they won’t be able to outstage? I doubt it.
20Jazzfunkgreats Night on Saturday at the Penthouse (see above for a photo of Stuart on a strut to fetch a pint of sider), 8-1AM, Free entry, super-special guests and the usual bloody pastiche of noise, disco and 20-sided dice. You know how we roll.
Get tickets at Resident, Rounder or Edgeworld. Total winner.