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Music Consumption: godspeed you black emperor!
12/15/2000 godspeed you black emperor!: lift your skinny fists like antennas to heaven

I can't stop listening to this. Definitely a top 10 from 2000. I think my favorite sections appear on the second disc--"Broken Windows, Locks of Love" and "Antennas to Heaven," which are both the most nakedly emotional (and redemptive!) parts of this work. They only have their full power, however, in the context of the rest of discs. After all that, "Broken Windows, Locks of Love" (which starts something like 14 minutes into the first track on disc 2), is heartbreaking. It's an assertion of individual triumph even as the world says you've been defeated. It affirms the continued existence of a personal soul even as western science tells you there's no spiritual realm, and nothing awaiting you after death. It's a wordless "Howl" of victory in spite of all evidence to the contrary for our generation. Get with it.

11/07/2000 godspeed you black emperor!: lift your skinny fists like antennas to heaven

I had the chance to pick up the new godspeed you black emperor! release, lift yr skinny fists like antennas to heaven, and I have been deeply moved. Disc one surveys a darkened landscape of alienation and despair (the kind you'd expect from the capitalist tragedy illustrated in the gatefold). But amid all the apocalyptic gloom, there's hope--notably, that section starting around 18 minutes into the first track on disc 2 where the hip-hop-ish drumming kicks in like the sun breaking through the clouds. The glockenspiel duet is a great touch, as are the field recordings, and the quiet climax of disc 2 induces chills and cures them. But everything on this set is essential--truly one of the CDs of the year. More when I have the energy.

10/08/2000 godspeed you black emperor!: live

godspeed you black emperor! live! A very good crowd turned out for this one. My big mistake was coming a bit late, because I missed much of Comae's set--an electronics duo of Robert Hampson (ex-Main) and turntable guy Janek Schaefer. They were very impressive. Great sparse, sculptural sense of sound and silence. Toward the end, they threw in some loud subsonic waves--ingenious and amusing with great timing. Bardo Pond, the middle act, did little for me--there's a thin line between "dreamy" and "nodding." The low-frequency feedback on the bass was interesting, but it turned out to be unintentional. GYBE themselves were very good--dramatic, emotionally wrenching, and driven by a righteous moral indignation as well as sadness... Movie music for the end of the age. No projections that night--their projectionist was ill with kidney stones--but the music itself was the p-st r-ck equivalent of Ennio Morricone for me, and was cinematic enough. And this was before I heard the CD. It was definitely a stage full of Montréalers, though--there were more people smoking onstage than in the audience...which shouldn't be a surprise, because it was a nonsmoking auditorium. Ah, culture...