Ž [ku00A]

by rhyzomatic

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    releases 10 November 2014

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heaven sea (original recording)
day of anger (version 1984)
(theme from) bolderbud



1. heaven sea (original recording) 10:30
2. day of anger (version 1984) 10:37
3. pan 09:11
4. bimbo 05:20
5. deluxe 06:30
6. maid 03:57
7. (theme from) bolderbud 03:44
8. heaven sea (2) (bonus) 05:51
9. satellites of fear (original recording) 07:12
10. ad noisia 04:22
11. heaven sea (completissimo) (bonus) 13:10
12.. (theme from) bolderbud (reprise) (bonus) 03:44

"the proletarians have nothing to lose but their chains. they have a world to win. WORKING MEN OF ALL COUNTRIES, UNITE!"
hello, my name is benjamin silva-pereira. back in 1983 i was 17 years of age. i had just discovered tangerine dream, can, and especially kraftwerk, a wondrous world of different hypnotic strange sounds and ways to make music, therefore a new way to perceive, understand and enjoy, listen to music. 'radioactivity' was the first electronic album i ever heard, after the deluge of releases on a music starving country portugal was; before 1974 there was not many foreign music published there. from 1974 to 1984 my reason and tastes grew like a space rocket elevating itself from the earth. my inquisitive and explorative mind fell in love with all the stuff becoming available. falling in love with duran duran was a very short affair, though. i wanted more than makeup. unable to play music, nevertheless i couldn't stop this fascination with sound, rhythm and music itself.
when a pen pal friend of mine sent me from britain a 12 inch maxi-single (as we called them at the time) i wasn't expecting my world to change, at all. not only my view of my existence changed utterly forever, my practices and realisations uploaded into maelstrom and a beautiful labyrinth. welcome to the world of stereo, and music production. and please do not think that when i say 'changed' i am exaggerating. not at all. it 'changed' me because there is a before and an after that record. before that one there was pop, portuguese, spanish, italian, caruso, amália, duo ouro negro, opera nova, da vinci, josé cid, roberto carlos, led zeppelin (not even classical music at that moment...) and commercial music, that was it. dr. mabuse was a slap in the brain, in the mind, and in the body. it had the virtue and ability to metamorphose pop into something whatever else.
i was lucky enough to have a rich, i mean, really wealthy friend whose tastes equalled mine in many circumstances. actually we were born in the very same day, different years, i the older one. he bought a synthesiser (kind of...), something i never thought about seeing, much less put my fingers upon. he was one of the capitalists, i one of the sons of the proletariat. but we went along well and we started to investigate this machine. that took us to find recording, if primitive methods. i still remember well his passion and love for 'architecture and morality' by orchestral manoeuvres in the dark. and then he had the shock of his life when i played him the vinyl: das testament des dr. mabuse, by PROPAGANDA. if my life was changed forever, his was too, maybe more than mine. i loved '(the ninth life of...) dr. mabuse' and 'des testament des mabuse', he adored 'femme fatale'. he had money, i had ideas. i was communist at the time, he was a lump of lard masturbating on the rocks on august afternoons, i mean a slob rich cunt. we went well together. he was fat, but clever. he got 'married' and i stayed gay.
so we decided to start a band, rhyzomatic at my insistence. I loved deleuze at the time (now i think he was another lump of cerebral fat and nothing much comes out from his teachings, yes, as if, the same regarding to mister freud and acolytes, the wasters of time...) but we were a band, an instrumental band. a par the pet shop boys, soft cell, OMD, blancmange, etc, without the vocals, that is. and we couldn't play music. or sing, obviously. we spent one year (or just a little bit less) wasting ourselves recording throughout endless nights on un-releasable stuff. we done so many things. dubbing tape after tape, buying the first mixer (him), three tracks, then eight (him again). analogue, just like tape and glue and scissors. i loved it, he gave up quite quickly. i thought we were doing something jolly and terribly avant-garde. he said it was bollocks. i was not in the mood to argue. i am not in the mood for that, anyway... we recorded and finalised a few tracks. we made tapes and gave them to friends and send them to record labels in portugal. no feedback, no surprise there at all. they were bad, the tapes? maybe not, i though:. the music was sublime, for me. he gave up, i didn't. i kept playing the tapes over and over again.
when i moved to england in november 1995 i brought the tapes with me - along with time, little knowledge and lots of patience i transferred them the best i could to digital media, with the idea of doing something about them. i didn't until now: and still i love them. full of mistakes; and music per se is not abundant. maybe there are just the memories.
no, we didn't have sex, we were a different kind of gay. (yes, men of the same sex have sex amongst themselves...) no loops. no samples. maybe i, us/we were ahead of our own time (not). it was PROPAGANDA, the band, that really opened my hears and my eyes (it would be some years until i saw anton corbijn's video clip of the track, and if it was any good, it didn't impress me.) until today anything i do is based on the teachings of that magnificent 12 inch, DAS TESTAMENT DES MABUSE. the production and the 'writing', the teachings of trevor horn and associates and, above all, the cosmos of that band, or for what matters, that track. extended paradise, long dub visions of an eden in sound, variations of the dark classic composers transposed to pop music, dance music, that musical anathema. the 'drums' i produced and performed are so very much influenced by african rhythms as by the last section of mabuse. of course i couldn't and can't play even the triangle, but lowering the volume on the mix of the synth's percussion i thought i could disguise the lack of savoir faire. it works.
did you notice how many basses are there in the mix of 'dr. mabuse'? did you noticed how they tell a powerful story with changing of rhythms, tempo and variations of the same themes going left to right, right to left in the stereoscope field? did you notice how claudia bruken voice is really shite but that she says a phrase in german and 'it' almost makes the whole track? did you noticed how the percussion and the drums tells of another story even more powerful, ever changing throughout the composition? did you notice that the lyrics refer to the novels and films about that eternal manipulator of people, das doktor mabuse? did you notice that you do not even need the lyrics for anything, as powerful as it is the music? did you notice the subtle use of electronics and electronic effects? and that beginning, gosh, gosh'es, god, gods! a coin twisting never sounded that good, not before, or after, until today. did you notice that the drums, very eighties, loud in the mix, are actually one of the only examples of drums 'high on the mix' that really do not bother anyone, because they are part of the storytelling? if you flip to side B of the maxi-single, and forget about lou reed's tune first, you find a 'version' of DAS TESTAMENT that actually is more than a dub or remix. it is a piece in itself that survives excellently without the 'original'. it is. that suffices. that's sufi. that's noise and dodecaphonic, dada, excellent. it is the other verse of the coin, is it not? the coin that stars and starts the A side, ends up in the end of B side (wherever you remember vinyl or not, learning time, right?)
someone told me that track was wagner pop. without the valkiries and the pomp, and the boredom, and the endless myths and screeching, well, not wagner at all, i say. paul morley told his friends that propaganda were abba on acid, it glued into being.
along the years i always listened to the 'album' we made (titleless), and several outtakes, a myriad of reinterpretations and versions, à lá ztt records' fashion we loved so much (frankie goes to holiwood, 808 state et al...) no track was ever completed. it couldn't, it was impossible, we didn't know how. we didn't know how to play, how to mix. it was fun, it is fun to be had, to have still. '(theme from) thurnderbud' has got at least 2 hours worth of material. 'day of anger' has got so many tempos and arrangements that i start to believe that we actually had some kind of skill and knowledge only allowed to real master musicians. GAY MUSIC MADE BY GAY MEN IN A CATHOLIC WORLD.
in 1985 ztt released a remix album, 'wishful thinking' (ztt 119 cd) that included reworks from 'a secret wish' (salvo mdcd14 ~ ztt element 11) in 8 DISTURBDANCES. before that was released we were doing our own MASTURBDANCES ~ we decided to copy some tapes, make a good sleeve and write some notes even. we used just one photograph by kurt reichert (1935), very teutonic. we created a record label, a tape label: Ž.
Ž was the secret code Tchaikowsky used on his correspondence with other homosexual fellows. it made a certain sense. it is a pity i lost the only tape i had with the notes. i presume it was some kind of quotes from karl marx and engels' 'the communist manifesto', but i am not sure. maybe it was some sentence by deleuze, who will know now. like lazarus returning to the fastness i decided to show these 'reels' again to the savant public, and into oblivion, as per usual.
his name was carlos lima. he is dead. i am not.

Benjamin silva-pereira, Richmond upon thames, may 2014


releases 10 November 2014



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