Dec 3, 2007

MYSTICAAL OBJECT AT NOON - Larkfall Gives It Up Like an Old Cougar

I sung and sung and sung the praises of dear Phil Legard and his idiosymptomatic Larkfall label many a moon past, even though it was in a review for a Xenis Emputae Travelling Band tape that wasn't even on his label. As I see it, you take whatever occasion frisbeed at you to stop talking shit and start talking salad. Right? And so I did.
The problem with that XETB tape was that it was basically long gone by the time I finished typing the first word. So y'all probably ended up thinking, "Oh. Okay. Fine," and went about your day. It's a precarious world this little-sluice-off-an-aqueduct-of-actual-culture-that-we-call-FUC lives in. If the ship goes down, you can never say I gargled my last through some corny tears. I'm fighting the good fight for good music, or at least what's left of it.
Phil Legard's Larkfall aims to do likewise, only in a probably way more effective manner. Phil went and uploaded all the out-of-print XETB releases on his label as empeethrees--free for the taking! Why, he even hooks you up with a full-scale printable copy of the sleeve so's you can slap it in a jewel case, put it on your shelf and pretend you was with it from the jump.
I dig the music itself plenty. The Goat Willow has some moments of Jackie-Oish wandering, but on the whole, Xenis Emputae is travelling through much darker underbrush. There's something about JOMF that's unconvincing and you never get that with any of Legard's English countryside mark-outs. Can't remember if any of these were recorded in supposedly-haunted groves or slippery ruins, but he does do that on the regular. The odd duck in the paddling is most definitely Under A Soular Moon, seeing as it's mostly digital but all those synths are really just a different shade of sunglass staring at the same wubbly brooks and misty meadows. The whole mess is ripe with occult and gnostic references that I might know if I collected rare books or lurked at Bieneke library like I did in my younger youth, but I don't so they're largely lost on me. And, anyhow, they're really only an edge piece; you can still see the picture.
Going to Tom Nevers beach, which is just a skip from where I sit, and listening to XETB is the kind of experience I wish I could hand out. Tom Nevers is eroding and decaying like almost nothing else on the island (ceptin' Sankaty, but that's a sung song). So fast, don't you know, that the cement blocks from piers and boat launches are still sitting there. Up along the cliff, you can look down at a fallen TV (the old 500lb, blown tube variety) from where the road has fallen off, spot a seal way out & regarding you like a lost dog, then turn around and look at low and crowded trees shaped by the wind and some unfinished mansions. See, to Legard, these records are geographically specific, so even if you've never seen "the caves and churches around Yorkshire and Cornwall" you can get a feeling for how he sees them. But take them somewhere else and they inform your peepers like you made'em happen.
Give it up for amorphous creativity. It could be the mark of longevity.
Hoof it over to the recordings page at Larkfall so you can ball out in the fallout.


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