If you’ve ever been to Dublin you know it’s a dark place at the best of times. It’s wet, it’s never stops being wet, the Liffey is just another shower in between the rain. People are addicted to drink, to drugs, to life, to death, the collective memory is laced with psychosis. Nobody trusts the sun. We have a lot of words that begin with O – O’Reilly, O’Bannon (grrrrrr), O’Neill – but optimist isn’t one of them, so you can imagine my state of mind when I hadn’t heard anything from Gerry after a week or more. I knew his high altitude balloon was resilient but …well. I tried not to dwell on it, found a bottle of gin on the shelf, poured a large shot…..spat it out the window. It wasn’t gin. The window wasn’t open. Face soaked in turpentine…I went to light a cigarette, thought better of it and sat down to put the week together…I’d done pretty damn well considering…we had 14 fantastic new tunes from Jesca Hoop, The Marbles Jackson, Kumisolo, Wy, Frànçois and The Atlas Mountains, Pom Poko, Viva Suecia, Bedford Falls, Les sueques, The Suicide of Western Culture, Tamikrest, seeme, Sonic Visions and Sophie Lillienne.
I’d nailed the interview with Nick Triani of Finnish label Soliti.
We got some insight into the music that Swords sharpen their blades to.
The album of the week by The Man From Managra – Half A Century Sun (Inner Ear Records) – was just superb. I said “The Man From Managra rhymes forgotten with autumn. He paints a perfect Constable and then parks a Cruiser tank on the lawn. The songs are instantly familiar, like an old china cup but look closely at the patina, it’s all the minuscule cracks that let the strangeness in. You know, all these weird little glitches ticking away under the surface, the chorus in the background, it veers off the road and back on, a drunken ride in the moonlight. It’s a dream on a summer day when you fall asleep in a hay-field and heaven opens up and calls you in, Nick Drake’s hand reaching down from the silver-lined clouds. It’s the walk home down the dusty lane, the white wine making everything impossibly bright. Impossibly bright.” See what I can get away with when Gerry’s not around?
The new picture by FAON FAON in the Galleria De La Switeria (Méduses/Jellyfishes) was exceptional. I wandered down to the gallery later and sat there in the dark, a little drunk, a lot maudlin, shining the light of my phone up on the canvasses…I’m pretty sure Gerry had hung a few of them upside down. Not that I’d noticed before.I got back to the office and pulled out the unfinished manuscript for my new book “Mister Music Man: The DJ Inside Me”, I couldn’t stand the silence so I flicked on the box…the news was reporting something about a NASA probe on a mission to Mars..it had discovered the most extraordinary thing…what appeared to be as astronaut floating in space….there was a grainy photograph….could it be….? Galactic Indie Tunes? Could SWIT turn into GIT?