Thursday, January 29, 2009

more Pearls Before Swine

Pearls Before Swine - The Complete ESP-DISK Recordings (lala) - I'm rather smitten with this band, and I think a lot of it has to do with Tom Rapp's lisp. Lou Reed has a similar allure in his brazenly flawed vocal delivery, they are working aberrations to an advantage. But this collection is a cave, as you go deeper, terrestrial concerns like quality of voice are no longer of any great concern, giving way to that delicious brand of paranoid anxiety that only psychedelia can deliver.

Even when Rapp sweetly twitters I shall have peace, as leafy trees are peaceful when rain bends down the boughs in the epic "I Shall Not Care" after a particularly heady organ-grinder boogie-freakout you know its because he doesn't have it now and that now is perpetual down in the dark cave, and when your eyes go out from uselessness in the dark, the unforgiving walls then just make your harpsichord or lute or organ sound all the sweeter. When "The Surrealist Waltz" swings around, you mouth breathes in darkness and sings it back out, humming from passing through your lungs and heart. It's a blind cave snake vining up your leg, and you know its there, but you can't see it anyway, so why look? Just keep wading in that cold cave water until you have to swim, and then swim in it until you can wade again, or you can't swim anymore. But keep going, because that cave might open up to the sun any moment, and though you are now blind, the warmth of the sun will register on your pale, cold skin and you, bent like a tree in the rain, will be again in the embrace of the surface, and will have peace.

It should be noted, I suppose, that our lisping Dante Tom Rapp did emerge out of this cave into the embrace of the University of Pennsylvania Law School and is now an attorney in Florida. And you thought I was going weird places with this story....

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