x Lord Sir Dragon * June 2016
“The Casio-psychosis of a moral dyslexic squeezing out songs like glue to hold himself together. The act of picking cigarette ends off the floor because you like the taste of cheap lipstick. Love crafted from a night in with Teletext and Benylin. A suit, stained with the amphetamine sweat-beads of your worst porno nightmare. A stolen suit, a borrowed suit, a dead man’s suit, a dead-skin mask. Dance with me, you syphilitic tramp. I love you. A silk cravat, a painted rope. Hysterical, literate, blackened by the sun. Pop svengalis pissing blood into bronze buckets. The very idea of a Masterpiece. Ancient orders, first religions, Old Gods. Tascam Porta-7. Sex for small change. Thrillingly lo-fi, absurdly ambitious. Man as blind abacus. Man as performer; touched by the hand of Thoth. Man versus the world; woman as insect. An enormous insect that you want to be eaten by. Eat me: keep me warm. Keep dancing. Did I tell you to stop dancing? Locked in the cellar: We have always been here. Bontempi nights: the moon is in control. Pulling to the sea pulling violently like a green disease from within ever-living divine but violated, blind more to come tonight. In the War Against Sleep winning is not even the issue. It’s the cheating that counts. Now dance, damn you. Dance until you are on fire.”Nick Talbot (Gravenhurst ) 2003
This is a 36 track take on the 36 parts to the 1907 James Joyce poem. Includes contributions from War Against Sleep, Gravenhurst, Peter Buck (REM), Steve Shelley, Lee Ranaldo (Sonic Youth), Mike Watt, Jessica Bailiff, Willy Mason, Bardo Pond, Mary Lorson, Jeff Kelly. Double CD, Double Vinyl.
shall surely be remembered a hundred years hence – Culture
should be heralded as one of the great interpretative works – PLAYLOUDER
- Chamber Music (album cover)
- Available from www.firerecords.com
01. Wider Than Wisdom
02. A Kind Of Family
03. Big Eyes
04. Simple Life
05. Morning Star
06. World Of Creation
07. Aura Of Endless Fear
08. Do What You Do
09. Lucky Lady
10. I Believe
11. Are You Still Waiting For Me?
12. This Is The World
13. You Wait A Long Time
Silent Age Records is proud to present the fifth album from War Against Sleep, the work of songwriter and psychonaut Duncan Fleming. His most accomplished work yet, ‘Versus Time’ presents us with the question ‘if everything is bullshit, what really matters? What happens after meaning has melted down?’. Meditating upon this theme he takes us on a journey through a world where the golden palaces of classical culture have fallen and their crumbling remains have been fashioned into crude totems by idiot savant children, legoman cowboy builders and effete, laudanum addled dandies. We find ourselves trapped in a Choose Your Own Adventure story where everything is possible and all paths lead to death.
We realise we are God, and then feel bewildered when we realise everything else is too. ‘Versus Time’ celebrates that which is liberating about nothingness; ridiculing our own absurd attempts to articulate wisdom and make sense of life, our failed attempts to resist the utter devastation of time, entropy and change. Fleming concludes that the religious instinct is an attempt to leave a breadcrumb trail leading back to sublime states, but there is no substitute for direct experience. The breadcrumbs have all been eaten by creatures of the night and are gone by morning.
Despite the sublime lyrical themes, ‘Versus Time’ makes no demands upon the listener, who can choose to simply enjoy a set of thirteen humorous, moving and brilliantly crafted pop songs. The influence of Alice Coltrane, Barry White and Luke Haines’s Baader Meinhof comfortably occupy the same archetypal status as the Corpus Hermeticum and the Splendor Solis. War Against Sleep lyrics have been filtered through decades of occult fiction and The Pan Book of Horror Stories vols 1-30. Suffice to say Duncan Fleming is a song writer who draws from a broad and pleasingly demented creative palette. (Nick Talbot, Gravenhurst 2011)
Our family had just moved into a large but derelict detached house. My wife was weeping because the new house wasn’t clean enough to let our babies crawl around so I agreed to ride my pushbike to the shops and buy some cleaning materials.
It was exceptionally sunny so I wore a big brimmed hat and dark spectacles. As I approached the shopping precinct I noticed a commotion and saw that a pop band were coming to the end of an outdoor warm up concert. It was apparent that they were there to promote their bigger show later that evening at a local venue. I could hear people in the audience saying that they still sounded good even though their lead singer had not appeared on stage. I liked the music too and was intrigued to find out the name of the band. I rested my bike up against a wall and made my way through an old stone archway which led into a covered walkway. I was surrounded by a jostling crowd of people all eager to make their way forward through the passage. I asked some of the people ‘what’s the name of the band?’ but nobody answered me. We reached a barrier and the door staff began issuing numbered tickets which were being used as a lottery to allow a small number of people to pass beyond. I said to one of the door staff ‘I just want to know what the name of the band is’. Inexplicably they gave me a conspiratorial wink and let me through the barrier.
I found myself in a large marquee decorated with ornate topiary. Waiting staff were giving out free drinks and snacks. At least four of the people in the room wore gold masks. Some were sitting on plush red velvet furniture. People who I assumed were part of the entourage greeted me as if I was an old friend – I just kept quiet in case they realised I wasn’t supposed to be there. After a while I was told to put on a gold mask and was ushered through a long tunnel which led out to a stage. I was ushered towards a microphone stand at the front of the stage and looked out at the audience. Apparently I was the singer in the band. I wasn’t quite sure what to sing, or even if I could sing but actually the music seemed strangely familiar so I just sang what came into my head spontaneously, which happened to be fully formed lyrics, and it all sounded quite pleasing to me. After one or two songs I gradually remembered that this was a self-hypnosis trick I was playing on myself every night of the tour, with the collusion of band members and friends, in which I had been giving myself post hypnotic suggestions to take on a false identity and have total amnesia, and yet be able to find myself on stage each night without a hitch.