on life, music etc beyond mainstream

2017 25 Jun

From Morrison Planetarium, San Francisco

von: Michael Engelbrecht Filed under: Blog | TB | Tags: , Comments off

Stephen: I’ve always been chanting „Michelle“ with wrong words, never been keen on getting the French and English right. All I needed to know it’s that love song with this floating melody …

(noises on the tape, a kind of xylophone in the background, a hole of six minutes)

Anne: Sam Genders‘ voice is strongly rooted in a long and winding and very English road of delivering vocals – slim, clear, small brush, kind of. Most of the words I got from first hearing, though my Kentucky accent is slightly different.

David: „Dorothy“ is quite an addictive experience. He really put the poems of Dorothy Trogden into motion opening up quite different landscapes, soundwise…

Anne: Ha, yep, I think hearing these poems from a classically trained female soprano voice adding a string quartet with a knack for the Second School of Vienna, oh me, there would be no shivers down the spine …

David: This pair is a perfect match. Allow me to recite this one, called „Everything“ – „Only connect, Forster said, and I remember moments under an umbrella on a wet city sidewalk, my arm locked in another’s, our steps in sync. I lived for that even as I knew its passage. Everything is on its way to being something else, beginning or undoing, brighter than it was, or darker.“

Anne: Beautiful in its simplicity. And now really becoming something else, transported to a kind of folk idiom, neither traditional nor weird. You are literally drawn onto these these „wet city sidewalks“, everyday motives with a twist, seductive in a silent way.

Stephen: From the point of view of one of my current favorite song albums, Sam’s songs have a tiny little bit in common with Grandaddy’s recent album, that „mellow yellow“ vibe, sun-drenched, loving to let the lyrics dissolve in whispered melodies …

Anne: Hush, hush! Is it on „Winter River“ where the musicians move, for a short passage of time, into Ennio’s wide prairie territory? There are small surprises everywhere.

Stephen: There are only 50 seconds I don’t like too much, with that electric guitar at the end of one track. But, ha, even on „Sgt. Pepper’s“ there’s one whole song I don’t like, the one with the chickens in the morning.

Anne: Hopefully it will work on the new stereo mix, Stephen, You really are a Beatles maniac. „Dorothy“ feels, in moments, like stepping its toes in early English folk moods from the late 60’s. More breezy and rolling than rocking. Remember the pilgrimage of Vashti Bunyon.

David: At least that’s what they do have in common, a journey!

Anne: By the way, what are we looking at here? In this old exhibition?

Stephen: I’m not too sure. They have no guide here in the morning. It’s a stunning view, isn’t it? Mrs. Trogdon’s lines come to mind: „So just let me watch the cinema of my perceptions, let me
 catch them and let them go.“


– excerpts from a tape recording at Morrison Planetarium, San Francisco. Morrison Planetarium shows are fueled by cutting-edge scientific data, resulting in stunning visualizations of the latest findings, discoveries, and theories about our Universe. Every star or galaxy a viewer encounters in the planetarium precisely mirrors a real-world counterpart, and when this virtual cosmos is projected onto Morrison’s 75-foot-diameter screen, the dome itself seems to disappear, resulting in a uniquely immersive experience. You might have similar sensations listening to Diagrams‘ „Dorothy“.

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