Monday, December 18, 2017

not going gently, into that night of goodness. or similar.

so it seems that prophesy is unavoidable, and that which is done in dark jest is inevitably taken the most seriously. Z'EV, someone I worked with on many projects and for some years, has slipped away, and quite a bit falls from the lip-chamber, escaping as it should have a long time ago.

I first met him when I came to Amsterdam for the first Hafler Trio lectures. he sat in the front row and asked 'tricky' questions. I had wanted to meet him for years. and so I did. he was living close to the Central Station with his then 'partner' Dr. Dorothea Franck, and later we would become Mother Tongue. slowly but surely we saw each other most days and most nights; I did live sound for him so many times I lost count, mixed tapes, remastered cassettes so they could be released on LP, treated tapes so they could be further played around with, composed tracks for him with his material while he lay in bed with the 'flu, and delighted him when he arose, designed promotional material and record covers for him, and a great deal more, generally involving carrying odd-shaped pieces of metal and encountering difficulty with trains. we played Dutch billiards at a bar across the road from where I was living in a squat, very close to the centre of Amsterdam, the name of which I forget because we always referred to it as "The Second Office." we were pretty good. we listened in awe to the production on Neil Diamond's greatest hits. really. Z'EV and Doro were incredibly kind and generous to me in my ridiculous, self-imposed nightmare of a transition period of moving from the UK to Holland. I took his tsing-tsa (Tibetan hand bells) to London to record his composition "Geelgalayah" and they broke in the middle of the session. actually shattered into several pieces, without having being abused in any way. I tried to hide this fact, and he discovered the broken pieces before I had a chance to even try to replace the bells. it is impossible to convey how guilty and terrible I felt.

I saw Z'EV play many times, mixing, equalising and effecting his sound as part of the performance with him; and on a good night, I swear, there was nobody to touch him. nobody. what is a painful fact is that much of what was amazing either a) did not even record onto tape (the frequencies were so extreme that no cassette on earth would have held them) or b) were so badly recorded as to be useless. no amount of treatment could save them. I tried. really. a few made it through. so bear in mind when you hear his work that much that would completely blow you away is lost forever, and much of what you can hear was many times greater in actuality. it is of course possible to say that about many people, but in Z'EV's case, very much more than just true.

Z'EV had many stories, and I listened to all of them. this was a man who told me that he had seen The Doors perform before they were signed to a record label, after all, just to give one example. but some of them were somewhat painful. there was a double attitude; on the one hand, his pioneering work was truly neglected, and it was indeed obvious to anyone with half a brain cell that it had been copied wholesale and watered down for great career effect by others. however, on the other, there was an undeniable self-destructive side to him of which I could tell many stories but will not, that he himself revelled in, in a perverse sort of way. this was coupled with a bitterness which while understandable, was also clung to a little too tightly and paraded a little too often for comfort.

Mother Tongue once performed at the AIR Gallery in London; this was to have been a major opportunity to get a financial backer, and big things were going to happen. supposedly. Genesis P-Orridge (as was) videotaped the event, and captured a horrible, ugly, quite unbelievable fight after it between Z'EV and Doro, revealing the side that was desperate to have what "he deserved," and blaming anyone he could when it did not arise as he wished. I truly hope that tape does not exist any more. the "deal" never materialised, and a major breakdown took place which was a very disturbing thing to witness, which we all did for a day or so. so it can be said with certainty that I saw him at both ends of the scale and a great deal of what was in-between.

Your Humble Narrator, Z'EV, Doro Franck = Mother Tongue. photo by Esther Wollheim.



I sat with him and helped him edit his entire history up to that point, which became "One Foot In The Grave" and was his first real release outside the channels he had been 'stuck' in, his first real 'retrospective' and his first CD(s). I was still involved with Touch, and introduced him. I thought he deserved a professional, properly done package of quality to show how incredible some of the work he had done was (and is).  he nearly destroyed this by coming to the appointment to master it all with me and lighting a huge joint. after me strongly suggesting to him that dealing with the presentation of his life's work might be better served with a clear head, he left, and came back the next day. not under the influence.

gradually, I left Amsterdam, and eventually Holland. Z'EV went through a series of ever-more bizarre living situations, including a room which was surrounded by doors, and in someone's office, sleeping under a desk, so that he for the first time in his life worked office hours, I recall him telling me. he helped me understand the Qabalistic/Numerological processes and details so that "I LOVE YOU" (the third, unreleased part of the so-called "Sexual Trilogy") could be finished. (well, it isn't really, but it got to the stage that it could be presented live.) I learned that his hearing had deteriorated somewhat, which is not suprising, given the battering his shell-likes must have taken over the years. this was confirmed when I heard some work where I recognised the signs of top-end hearing loss that I had noticed with a few others that I had worked with, and heard from some mastering engineers that the tapes which Z'EV submitted were quite some work to make useable. but in the end, I think he knew this, and worked with it, and if anyone could make it work, it would have been him. after all, the sound was only a small part of what he was dealing with.

we planned to do a US tour in 2003. the artwork and an extract from the CD that was to accompany it are here:

http://simplysuperior.org/RANDOM/Z-MT/

and of course, like most of these things, it never happened. the title of the CD came from an actual toast I once heard in a Liverpool bar, and Z'EV truly loved it. it took years between me telling him of it and it getting used. and it didn't, eventually. and now it does. ironic, to be sure.

we also planned to re-release the Mother Tongue record "Open In Obscurity" with extra material on CD. Z'EV had it mastered by a friend of his in the 'states, and the dreaded and now defunct Phonometrography were to re-release it. again, some sort of offence was caused in the communication stream, and this never happened. a sketch for the typography for the sleeve is here:

http://simplysuperior.org/RANDOM/Z-MT/MT-cover.pdf

between this and today, something happened, and it seems I will never know quite what it was. a month or so ago, I wrote to him to invite him to have a conversation as part of the podcast "WWHWW?" the reply was so extreme in its hatred, that I was quite taken aback; I had been aware of some stories floating around, but nothing so savage that would generate such a response. and now, I cannot ask, and I cannot even try to repair any damage, real or imaginary.

I subsequently discovered that he had removed me from his history; Wikipedia page, home page, everything. he is not the first, and possibly not the last, but it is still very odd and unfathomable to me why such things happen, and that the erasure of someone from history is thought to be even possible, let alone desireable.

Z'EV was always someone that you were either 'for' or 'against'. there were no half-measures. principally from his side.

I was always 'for' him, even in the dark times. he taught me a huge, actually unquanitifiable amount, which I will never, ever be able to repay. my gratitude will endure.

it is not how I would have wished to have this story end, but that's how it has to be. he would have called everything I have written here "bullshit," but I hope that he would have been wrong about at least most of it, at least this time.




 (if anyone is interested in releasing the two items mentioned here, please get in contact.)

Wednesday, December 6, 2017

the proxy of agentism, by and for your leave. yes.

and so:

http://www.kontra-musik.com/portfolio/andrew-mckenzie/

like an old wrinkled olive in a basket of strawberries, your friend and humble narrator stands alongside others infinitely more beautiful and vigorous. however, you are entreated, nay, commanded to make use of this page to have organised Simply Superiority descend and envelop streets, houses, and hearts near or even in you, soon.

Tuesday, November 14, 2017

wish you weren't here.

I have been out of hospital nearly two weeks, after having been in there for two. I am actually much worse than I was before I went in, with no end in sight. while I was there, however, two thoughts - or clusters of them - assailed me (I had much, much time for reflection and reverie, O my Fuzzy Headed Friends). they might make some difference - at least that vain hope persists.

it does not matter much whether or not you 'believe' or trust the Western Medical Establishment and their concomitant system(s) - you are likely, at some point in your life (I address the people reading this as in the majority, citizens of "Western" countries) to have a situation in which the only mechanisms available to you are those under their purvey. for the last 25-30 years my opinion - based on much experience in a wide variety of fields - has been shrinking in terms of its positive aspect with regard to Western Medicine and its underlying assumptions and foundations. that is as may be. if I break a leg, I am not likely to reach for the telephone number of the local homoeopath, reiki practitioner or essential oils remedy peddler. for the purely mechanical, I would say that the systems in place can do a job not to be sneered at. the implications come later, but in emergencies, they have you pretty much covered.

while I loathe, believe it or not, to give advice, this will come close. I have not been insured anywhere for a very, very long time. the way I have existed in various countries has separated me from the systems which most people in those countries are automatically (for the most part) members of. the reasons and circumstances are far too complex and convoluted, not to say uninteresting, to relate here. if you are not insured, and something which requires the attention of such systems occurs, you will be very severely punished for it, as I have been before, and now to a mammoth degree a few weeks ago. this is not hyperbole or exaggeration; you would do well to equip yourself beforehand because the consequences of not doing so are severe. very.

while I was incarcerated in the hospital, the circumstances were dire, but left much time for considering how such an establishment runs. it seems to me very clear indeed that there are many similarities to the Western Education system, as well as a very valid comparison to many religious systems which might be applied.

a hierarchical system, it features a Priestly class, a worker class, and (the almost) untouchables. there are holy books, tenets, prescriptions of all sorts; there are procedures carried out blindly by the bottom level of the pyramid, orders issued from the top which are never explained, never questioned, and never examined, no matter how ludicrous, inappropriate or ineffective they might be. the lower the level in the structure, the more genuine, honest and willing the people are to do what is "right." they are exploited in a way which could be called 'gross' but this is tempered by the fact at that at a certain point, the realisation dawns that all of this is automatic, and at no level is there even the dimmest conscious thought involved.

this was and is a horrific uncovering and sparked in me waves of compassion, sadness, and anger at the waste of potential, resources and lives. at some point, everyone involved, I believe, joined this system to "do good" and to help other people. and yet all they were doing was feeding the machine. what can be clearly seen is a system (if we look at it through the eyes of Stafford Beer or even Norbert Weiner) like all systems ultimately, dedicated to the preservation of itself; 99% of effort, energy and resources being expended on maintaining homeostasis. originally begun in tandem with religion, oddly enough, medicine and then hospitals were designed to help and cure the sick. people were approached as unique, and examination meant just that; not, as it is today, a streamlined set of procedures where all anomalies and points that do not fit in with the expected are cast aside or cut off so that the square pegs will fit - come what may - into the round holes.

when I first went on aeroplanes, one was treated as a valued customer, whose needs were one of the primary concern of the airline; I have seen that, in my lifetime, turn into a situation where 'customers' are merely logistics, and problems to be 'solved' - woe betide the passenger who has a problem which falls out of the bounds of the guidelines.

so for all these monolithic systems, be they transport systems, health care, politics, education and so on almost ad infinitum, there is a perversion of the human capacity for kindness, caring and empathy, largely (but not entirely) created by a blind impulse arising from a construction which ends up serving its own purpose, and almost against the purpose for which it was constructed.

in recognition of this, I propose to incorporate the idea of "medicine" (in a very particular and somewhat unconventional sense) within the purvey of Complemation, seeing as how, it is almost too obvious to say, learning involves the idea of taking care of the precious human body which allows us to carry on the absurd things we are busy with, but also gives the possibility of hearing something which might lead us elsewhere.

lastly, I offer this: 20 minutes after I received an email from Cold Spring Records that the re-release on 12" vinyl of the Barry Adamson / Pan Sonic / Hafler Trio release "The Hymn of the 7th Illusion" had arrived, I got a new roommate in the hospital. I leave it to others to work out what is going on.






Tuesday, October 10, 2017

if you want to get a hat, get a head.

may it please the court:

https://groups.google.com/d/forum/simply-superior---a-magnetic-centre
[answering the question when applying to join is mandatory]

we do hope to have the extreme pleasure of your presence and insight.

Friday, September 22, 2017

all you can eat. consciously, mind you.

"ashes to ashes, dust to dust, the proof of the pudding is under the crust."

a paroxysm of prestidigitation produces the perpendicular product of pulchritudinous (perhaps, particularly parsimonious) perspicacity:

http://simplysuperior.org/NEABTYOH/

please place your paws pleasantly, perceptively and presently in pretty proximate proximity.

promote prodigiously!

pip-pip!

Thursday, September 21, 2017

loose lips and wagging tongues for your edification and utilisation.

delight, merriment and general joyousness abound here at Simply Superior Mansions, where we have popped many virtual corks on which we now float, resplendent not only in divergence but in the knowledge that the long-threatened and indeed promised manifestation of Complemation Conversation is now available to those outside these particular walls. please point your electronic apparatus of whatever flavour or persuasion to:

https://simplysuperior.podiant.co/

please spread the tidings far and wide, so that these efforts might illuminate as many dark corners as possible in this particular set of interlocking vales, and benefit and merit both accumulate and disperse. all at the same time. yes.

you are sincerely and profusely thanked for your attention, dear Fuzzy-Headed Personages.

[UPDDATE September 26, 2017]

squeaking with Mark Fell:

https://simplysuperior.podiant.co/e/35850765f429ce/

[UPDATE October 4, 2017]

communications, verbally speaking, from Heiða Eiríksdóttir:

https://simplysuperior.podiant.co/e/358ad8d39dbbda/

Sunday, September 17, 2017

*then*, we were 6.

discovered in the debris left from the disaster last year. I even drew the main man himself but was somewhat fanciful regarding the colour of his spacesuit. a taste of things to come, perhaps. presented for entertainment purposes only. maybe.



Andrew Mark Mckenzie, Gosforth Primary School. all his own work.


Monday, September 11, 2017

something (X) this way, comes.

"Nonunitarily conceptual, eternally self-regenerative, Scenario Universe's "here" differentialing, and "there" integrating complex of nonsimultaneous  and only partially overlapping energy inter transforming episodes and their interdependent effects complementations, always and only operate as (a) angularly convergent, gravitationally imperative, substantiative, structural-systems' concentrating, and (b) angularly divergent, radiantly extortive, entropic, destruction dispersing, and never in the always and only immutable frame of behavioural data reference of conventional education's  and academic science's three only omni-interperpendicularly, self-interacting sets of always only interparalleled, eternally extensive, absolutely straight lines, which straight lines are 180-degree angles. Nature uses only waves---never straight lines."
                                                                                                                                       R. Buckminster Fuller

hand-drawn sketch for forthcoming 'attraction.'

Thursday, August 10, 2017

frying pan, fire.

https://groups.google.com/d/forum/simply-superior

come and argue, ask, discuss, blether, and generally distend your thinking or non-thinking capacities way past their bedtime.

You Are Invited!

#######################################################################
NB - no one will be accepted as a member if they do not answer the question asked....!
#######################################################################

because he said so.

"when an artistic tradition reaches the point when literally "anything goes," those who want to be creative have a problem: there are no fixed rules to rebel against, no complacent expectations to shatter, nothing to subvert, no background against which to something that is both surprising and yet meaningful. it helps to *know* the tradition if you want to subvert it. that's why so few dabblers  or novices succeed in coming up with anything truly creative." (Daniel C. Dennett)

Monday, July 3, 2017

I wish you were here with me now.

alas, alack, nothing to be done.

Estonian project cancelled., due to lack of interest.

thanks, everyone.

Sunday, July 2, 2017

the meeting of tones.

for many years, I have been giving the example of "just intonation" as the Everly Brothers. such was their accuracy of intonation, I saw a documentary (which I have not seen for years) where they were performing in a clip, one of their famous tunes. the documentary then cut to them 30years later, and the song continued without any noticeable change.

their harmonies are unique in 'pop' music, and finally, I have encountered an example: here you have the brothers' harmonies (about 3mins 20 - and many examples later on) 'beating' with each other. not aware of any other examples. utter beauty.

(no, it's not the old recording, they did this many times)

https://youtu.be/lTYe9eDqxe8?t=181

Friday, June 30, 2017

last person to leave, please turn the lights off.

with great sadness and regret, the workshop and performance "'''''''" in Sweden has been cancelled, hopefully to be rescheduled at some point either later this year or sometime during next. I feel it to be so strange a situation as regards the fact that this is the third failed attempt to have this manifest in that country. no matter.

sincere thanks to all that expressed interest and all that tried to get this to occur.

Monday, May 15, 2017

oh yes it is.

as predicted (thanks to Aleksas for the link):

http://www.npr.org/sections/therecord/2017/05/11/527829909/the-mp3-is-officially-dead-according-to-its-creators

The liner notes state clearly that listening on headphones or compressing the recordings on Normally into MP3 format will render the music ineffective. I figured this was bullshit, but my attempts so far have supported this statement.

http://www.brainwashed.com/index.php?option=com_content&view=article&id=3188%3Athe-hafler-trio-qnormallyq&catid=13%3Aalbums-and-singles&Itemid=1 

many years ago, I had to read the entire documentation regarding the .mp3 format, as it was just being released. I could see then, that it was 'incorrect' - that is, there were a number of premises about hearing that were not feasible. and so we see that the truth will out. now, do I get anyone understanding one of the chief reasons I do not wish Hafler Trio material on .mp3?

Friday, May 5, 2017

"oh, you are sick!"

























just add gout for the perfect picture. and stop telling me it's all in my head. ok? and stop abusing / misinterpreting the word "karma."

yes, things do happen, even though...

"Never Eat Anything Bigger Than Your Own Head" = residential education instruction and design


demonstration of techniques involved, entitled "Sly Man's Pill" at both locations at the end of the course. 9-hours duration. in Estonia, this will take place at Raikkula Manor.

websites will be set up in the near future concerning these matters.   

      
"'''''''"
             The Pipe Factory, dates to be announced, possibly 23rd September.

Venjulega: soon. very soon. generosity has been forthcoming regarding supplying and funding the repair of damaged equipment, which has been holding up everything. all material has been re-done now 7 times, and that is enough, methinks. I heartily recommend transferring all your old DVD/CD backups to disk as soon as possible. I have lost many Terabytes of data because the technology that promised "forever" simply does not live up its promises. big surprise, but if it happens to you, then...

"How To Destroy the Past by Explaining It" = series of publications dealing with every single Hafler Trio release. exhaustive. formats not decided. comments invited.

A permanent location for the creation and manifestation of the Complemation principle is underway if you are interested in participating in such a venture, please inquire.

Thursday, April 13, 2017

not forgotten.

Mika, you are even now, missed.

you told me that Pansonic were formed after meeting Ilpo and he was playing one of my records in Turku.

you slid under the table and disappeared for a week.

not easy to do in Iceland.

I wish we had done more together.

you were the brother I never had.

2001, Reykjavík.

Thursday, March 16, 2017

all our yesterdays.

hunk(ee)y David Bunting Tibet as "bodyguard" in 1982 for the methadone-flop William S. Burroughs. and if you want to know more about that, you need to look elsewhere, or unlock the pathetic silence over this period. the same crap is going on today, as the histories are being written and swallowed by people that weren't even alive when this was happening. and of course, even the people that say they were there, weren't, and are the last people standing. so they create the 'truth'.

anyway, nice picture.

later that night (or one of those first two nights of Thee Final Academy, October 1992 1982)  - we sold the tickets for the last two because it was crap) I saw David at the Ritzy in Brixton with his then girlfriend Sue Catwoman (yes, her). I gave him a 1/4 bottle of whisky and he disappeared into the small lake of grey-shirted, sort-of-Hare-Krishna devotees, awaiting the first PTV performance, ever.

Wednesday, February 22, 2017

not forgotten.

the late and sorely missed Henrik Mxll and Rasmus Juel at Louisiana, 2009. includes h3o material. but is wonderful, even so.

http://simplysuperior.org/audio/Louisiana-070809.mp3


the last time I saw him. thanks to Lulu for the photo.

Wednesday, February 15, 2017

oh Ye of little faith...



are you sitting comfortably? then I'll begin...

once upon a time, long, long ago, but not so  long ago that it has faded into the quicksand of what I laughingly sometimes refer to as "my memory," there was an entity with the bright and breezy appellation, "The Hafler Trio." not for us to debate where that particular labelling arose at this time: all will become clear in the end, at some later date. their uncountable exploits and meandering attempts to free the universe of suffering will be recounted at tedious and overpowering length someday by someone better equipped to rouse the empathy required to even slightly comprehend it.

be that as it may (and it most certainly may), the various humanoids associated with the project were not limited to the three; nay, and indeed double nay. rather than less than a Trio, it was, in fact many. one of their number was a splendid, unsurpassed loony and man of loveliness rejoicing in the name Alan Cook. of this personage, a book could and should be written; it has been many moons since his whereabouts were known to Your Friend and Humble Narrator, and so that job cannot be done. but a man as large as life and twice as dangerous - a man who wished no applause or recognition for his incredible, jaw-dropping Dadaist acts and behaviour which was, apparently, impossible for him to turn off.

This writer was wont to partake of this stream of wonder in Sheffield, in person, from time to time, having been introduced by one Christopher Richard Watson, he having been an instigator of what was to become the h3o project, and so it was that one balmy day, after many adventures indoors and out, that we were whiling away the time between acts of nonsense on a grand scale and the departure of the bus back to Newcastle Upon Tyne. suitably lubricated by various methods and substances, as befits this period, ambling and yes, slightly stumbling along the Sheffield streets, lightbulb above the great man's head manifests: TO WESTERN WORKS WE JOURNEY!

and Lo, we were indeed on the edge of the area which in times past had been populated by The Little Nestors, the silversmiths of Sheffield in 'better' days, and was now home to The Western Works - the name of the studio where Cabaret Voltaire, well-known beat-combo of yesteryear of which the previously mentioned C. R. Watson had been a member of, had been established for some time [the legendary Robol was a bit further down the street]. "We'll go and see Richard and Mal!" quoth the tall, imposing, full-bearded Mr. Cook. and so we sallied forth. and would you Adam and Eve it? they were at 'home'! the ever-paranoid Richard H. Kirk and his gorgeousness Stephen Mallinder ["the best-looking man in Pop" according to Paul Morley] were indeed present, and having not seen Alan for some time, and not knowing YHN very well at all, the atmosphere was "weird."

backtrack: in the beginning of the h3o, Mr. Watson shared some items of the past with YHN. one of these was a tape of a soundtrack to a film called "Chance Versus Causality." although a small section of this was released as the B-side (how quaint that seems to type that now!) of a 7" single (ditto!) named "Silent Command" in 1979, the full, approximately 45min item had never seen the light of day. this, YHN enthused, could be done through the agency of Touch, the multimedia (for want of a better word) outfit that YHN had set up with Jon Wozencroft and Gary Mouat. CRW hummed and hawed, chastened to the extreme by his experience (unpleasant, that is) in the cesspool of The Record Industry, but YHN continued, as he always did, to badger the former about this again and again. as was CRW's style, he would put off actually speaking to his erstwhile former compares about the matter by saying he "was going to do it soon."

YHN had found the maker of the film, Babeth Mondini (now, here with the correct spelling of her second name) in Amsterdam though the mighty Z'EV, who knew her, after CRW said that CV had no idea where she was, and so permission to release would be difficult. obstacle removed, thus. Touch was dedicated at that time to excellence in audio and visual production, and so objections on that score were throttled at birth.

fast forward: YHN and The Very Reverend A. Cook stood before the other two-thirds of the equation as regards this potentially excellent release, and the former idiot opened his big fat mouth and asked if Chris had spoken to them about it. something was mumbled about them releasing it on their own label, Doublevision and exit stage right the largest two people in the room.

a week later, CRW 'resigns' the Hafler Trio operation with a letter which was previously published on the internet some years ago.

still reading? eye candy coming up. promise.

as the years drew on, YHN was approached by some that shall remain nameless to bootleg the item, after further negotiations with CV had failed - the project having never been released on Doublevision, that having collapsed under the weight of one Paul Smith, whose name should strike terror into the hearts of those with even the barest acquaintance with him. frustration ensued, and artwork and a master were prepared. and so, without further ado, and to finally get rid of this nonsense, here is the rough artwork prepared at that time (ca. 2002). don't ask for the tape. I couldn't give it to you even if I could find it. I leave it to the gentle reader to examine, should they have the inclination, and to work out the references and synchronicities involved with this apparently simple design. good day to all.

front cover



back cover

CD label