Vague Hippie Shit: A Note to Roel van Diepen, editor at Lebowski Publishers
Recently you needed to bring some stuff - art, actually - to our designers Dog & Pony.
Being the kind of guy who only travels by public transport, on a 'grandmothers bicycle' or by foot, it must have been quite an experience for you to drive in my luxurious Ford Focus...
When you returned, I asked whether you enjoyed the ride. You did, you said, but made a remark about the cd that was playing while you were driving, calling it: "Vague hippie shit'.
Yes, I know, most people love singer/songwriters, or 'guitar bands', or popular (often Indie) stuff.
I never did.
I always liked noise, experimental stuff, off beat music, progressive, unsettling but also atmospheric music. Music, to me, was always about mood, about introspection, often sad and melancholic (that's life) - a mirror of the soul.
Dancing on music, a ridiculous concept.
I like Aphex Twin, an eclectic electronic punk wunderkind, a mad professor without dub.
Especially this track, from Chosen Lords, called Fenix Funk 5.
Or here, 15 minutes of relentless noise, live in Paris, back in 1993.
I like electronics, ambient music, soundscapes, everything Orb-like, or Kraftwerk, or should I say Eno, Byrne, Frippertronics... Here's Robert Fripp, with King Crimson, in its second incarnation. A follower of Bennett, who himself was a pupil of Gurdjeff, Fripp has always been ahead of his time. Check the guitar, the lyrics, the 10 (!) snare bassguitar.
I only recently came across Boards of Canada, and bought all their cd's (yes, you can laugh now): intelligent music, great titles: Everything You Do Is A Balloon, Chromakey Dreamcoat, Chomsky / Telephasic Workshop...
I like Thomas Fehlmann, who not only played with The Orb but also worked with Fripp. This track is a mix of ambient (Eno style) and modern classical music.
I listen to Recondite and the moody techno of Roman Flà¼gel (Wilkie, from the album Happiness is Happening).
Sad? Yes. Vague hippie shit? No. And I like Jon Hopkins, especially this track, a quite bonkers version of "Wire" (here's the mesmerizing studio edition).
At the London Book Fair, in the company of your colleague Selin Kuscu, I met Jacques Testard from Fitzcarraldo Editions (and editor of The White Review). He advized us to listen to the Fuck Buttons, described by him as 'pure noise'. Dear Roel, I hereby declare that Surf Solar by Fuck Buttons is now the official Lebowski anthem (beats starting after two minutes).
Next time I lend you my car, bring the noise.