XXJFG


14th March 2011

Total Eclipse of the Quark

Contrary to what you may think, the 20jazzfunkgreats diaspora likes to keep informed, and from time to time, participate in the key debates of that ‘real world’ of yours which floats parallel to the alternative dimension from which we broadcast. We still care for all you fleshers, left behind in a universe of scarce resources and crippling entropy. Today it’s the Great Stagnation that concerns us.

To simplify a lot, the ‘Great Stagnation’ thesis argues that median salaries in Western economies (and particularly the USA) have stalled because you have picked all the lower hanging fruit that was available for growth -  you have exploited the land, educated your population and reaped the rewards from technological breakthroughs earlier in the century. And now things are getting harder, and slower. Being the sci-fi aficionados that we are, we are of course interested on the technological bit of the argument, and its future implications.

We must say that, from the Lagrangian standpoint of post-humanistic singularity where our space station orbits, your future surely isn’t what it was cracked up to be. Yes, you have digital tablets and motion user interfaces, but no flying cars. Yes, you can access all of mankind’s imprecise knowledge base for free, but you still rely on notoriously unstable sources of energy. Yes, you have deciphered your genome, and will soon be able to engineer beautiful babies in abandoned oilrigs standing over fraught international waters, but you will be doing it for all the wrong reasons.

You are still stuck in this planet, all your genetic eggs in the same basket, waiting for the endogenous or exogenous conflagration that will erase you from the face of the universe. You need to sort it out, for your sake and ours– if you go, we are going to be stuck without human culture to devour and retransmit across the galaxy. For all its faults, your species is at its average amusing, at its best inspiring.

We would love to hook you up with the novel scientific constructs and amazing alien artefacts that we play with every day, but the protocols of the Cosmic Confederation to which we are bound forbids technology transfer to proto-civilisations under level Sigma-5 of evolution. You aren’t ready for contact yet. Either you swim or you drown.

If you are to create the knowledge that will take you to the next level, much needs to be done. We think that music has a role to play in inspiring new generations of curious youngsters to join the ranks of science, challenge established paradigms and break down those disciplinary boundaries that stand in the face of radical discovery. Trendy cop-out’s that merely nick Omni mag’s visuals without a deeper appraisal of its substance won’t suffice. No-one said this would be easy. No, we are talking about music that explores the potentialities of space, time and matter, and conveys its mysteries, something that requires a purity of intent, and even a knowledge of the subject.  Why shouldn’t a phD in physics be a meaningful pathway into pop stardom? As we reported last week, it happens in TV. So it should for music, otherwise your future is gronked.

Here you have some exemplars of music with the right stuff.

Emmanuel Tegel’s Solaris is featured in Love OD Communications release for ‘Earthbound – Surfing the Apocalypse’ transmedia project. The world needs more Utopian disco celebrating the moment when humanity stares at its reflection in the enigmatic mirror of an alien intelligence. If anyone was to re-issue Eduard Artemiev’s transfixing soundtrack for one of the most definitive classics of science-fiction ever made, they should seriously consider including this tune as a bonus. That is a seriously cool compliment in our book of Tarkovski/Lem worship.

Emmanuel Tegel – Solaris

Antoni Maiovvi’s Hot Biology EP packages the transcendent thrills of information exchange and extropic emergence which unfold at the micro/meso/macro level (quantum/cellular/cosmic) in a literally hi-NRG package that should be discussed in STEMNet afterschool clubs across the nation, not least because it sounds like Giorgio Moroder producing The Chase after a levitational epiphany over the dorky crop-circles of Fermilab’s Tevatron.

Antoni Maiovvi – Hot Biology

We embrace science as the collective trial-and-error adventure through which mankind makes sense of its environment, and crucially, learns to transform it in a non-short-sighted, non-destructive way. In doing this we don’t simply look forward, but also backwards and sideways, accepting that metaphysical constructs developed in cultures that some may disdain as ‘scientifically primitive’ have much to contribute to our understanding of the universe.

Maria Minerva’s stunning ‘Noble Savage’ EP, out in the brilliant 100% Silk Not Not Fun dance offshoot seems delivered from a Pacific atoll where slim priestesses have bootstrapped their belief system into a logically consistent, empirically sound cosmology through pure thought experimentation, and psychedelic revelries acquired after keen observation of the cycle of the tides and migration of the species at a pristine beach expanding as far as the eye can see.

The proof is sketched on the white sand, footprints that describe complexly choreographed festivals through which the tribe completes the universe, to the beautiful drone of a primeval techno anthem.

Maria Minerva – Hagasuxzzavol

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