James Kirk Is Not on the Case: Transmission 27, 2013 April 17

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danielledaxbbcsessions.jpegTonight we get a little bit "darker" and, in our Thatcher send-off early in the program, maybe a bit more mean-spirited than normal--which I hope is not saying much. Bombast is filling time, earlier in the evening than expected, fulfilling its nominal promise to be the unimportant stuffing that accompanies the relevant programming. The show is also sitting in for "The Dark Parade," a show that usually fills the Wednesday 9-11 time slot. We planned on 90 minutes, but due to "technical difficulties" we got 150. I hope that's alright with you.

"Seems like a decade ago...time has flown so fast." For someone to whom words matter, I can be downright incoherent at times. What I meant to convey at that moment was that stuff is very different for me, the station, and the program than it was back in January. An elaboration on that will have to come in pieces, as it seems to have done up to this point. Anyway, sheesh, there's a reason why I always end these posts by saying "enjoy the music"--the talking leaves much to be desired.

arkaneportrait.jpegI would like to say a word about A.R. Kane, and I am always down to publicize the Agonies of Saint Catharsis.

As I was trying to plan this particular program, the Hall of Legends Induction Committee was strongly considering A.R. Kane's candidacy, and the doors to the Hall nearly swung open tonight. Nearly. The Committee [consisting entirely of myself] ultimately decided that: (a) A.R. Kane just didn't record enough excellent music--even the 90-minute time slot that we assumed I would fill would have exhausted pretty much all of it, and I couldn't have devoted 2.5 hours to them alone, so thank goodness I didn't find myself in that position; (b)--and this is really sad--my gut just told me that 90 minutes of A.R. Kane wouldn't be the best inducement for first-time listeners to follow me over to Saturday afternoon. I KNOW. That is awful, isn't it? But "operating with transparency" is part of our mission, so as the saying goes "there you have it." I realize that I could avoid such torment by revoking my "anti-rotation" policy, and maybe also by outgrowing the need to care how many people are listening. You know, just a few minor adjustments.

arkanelollita.jpgAnyway, A.R. Kane burned so very brightly--you would be hard-pressed to find a band active between 1987 and 1989 that was doing more groundbreaking and influential stuff, or getting less credit for it, a tradition which I carry on here. They were initially dubbed by the English music press as "the black Jesus and Mary Chain," which says more about the JAMC being a reference point for just about everyone from England who used a fuzz pedal in the 1980s than it does about the actual music anyone made. Like My Bloody Valentine, A.R. Kane took the JAMC's basic (re)discovery--that a thick fuzzy chord, like happiness itself, was its own reward, not needing to be justified on any other terms--and applied it in a unique, incomparable way. A.R. Kane's addition was the summery, languorous quality of their melodies, and the boominess of machine beats and dub bass.

arkanemilksnatcherlabel.jpegWhen journalists either got tired of mentioning A.R. Kane's blackness or got wise to the fact that the band was creating something new, they dubbed this music "dream-pop," and I don't really know why--at any rate A.R. Kane became a new reference point for later acts that found more success, all while only about 500 people [a rough estimate] were actually listening to A.R. Kane records. They started a label of their own and were probably hurt by the demise of Rough Trade in the early 1990s--they resurfaced on Luaka Bop / Warner a few years later and were not the same. The lesson, as it so often is, is not to lift your nose from the grindstone. Or maybe it's not to sign with major labels. Or both. Anyway, common mistakes.

I don't underestimate their genius--it was just so concentrated, and so brief, that a "tough decision" had to be made w/r/t a full tribute. It is, after all, the Hall of Legends, not the Hall of Justice. I freely admit to being "part of the problem." The silver lining is that I still have a bunch of great songs in my holster, to be deployed at other opportune times. When else could I have dropped "Baby Milk Snatcher," required listening for any would-be A.R. Kane fan? What would a future induction program, if I change my mind about this, be without that number? How can I abandon the precious anti-rotation policy? Do you see what I'm talking about? Agonies.

About whether I think a heavy dose would appeal to marginal Bombasticons--I have lived it, son. Write in and tell me if you think I'm wrong.

Did I really write the phrase "summery, languorous"?

BOMBAST playlist, 2013 April 17, 2000-2230:

  1. Cy Dune: "No Recognize" [Family Tree]
  2. A.R. Kane: "Baby Milk Snatcher" [One Little Indian]
  3. UB40: "Madam Medusa" [Virgin]
  4. Danielle Dax: "Fizzing Human Bomb" [Dutch East India Trading] / "Physical Evidence"
  5. Karl Bartos: "The Binary Code" [Bureau B]
  6. D Tiberio: "Raver 5" [Time Table]
  7. The Human League: "The Black Hit of Space" [Caroline / Virgin] / "Listening Parlour"
  8. The Cannanes: "Molecule" [Explosion Robinson / Lamingtone]
  9. Danielle Dax: "Pariah" [Dutch East India Trading] / "Physical Evidence"
  10. Mogwai: "Wizard Motor" [Rock Action]
  11. Pickwick: "Myths" [self-released]
  12. Telekinesis: "Wires" [Merge]
  13. Danielle Dax: "Ostrich" [Dutch East India Trading] / "Physical Evidence"
  14. Lapalux: "Strangling You with the Cord" [Brainfeeder]
  15. Monokle: "Slower" [KI]
  16. Gems: "Logan's Run" [Don't Be a Lout]
  17. Wire: "Reinvent Your Second Wheel" [Pinkflag]
  18. The Clash: "Train in Vain" [Epic] / "Listening Parlour"
  19. Borko: "Hold Me Now" [Sound of a Handshake]
  20. Danielle Dax: "Numb Companions" [Dutch East India Trading] / "Physical Evidence"
  21. Vondelpark: "Come On" [R & S]
  22. Kelpe: "Bags of Time (Neon Jung Wormhole Remix)" [Svetlana Industries]
  23. The Besnard Lakes: "At Midnight" [Jagjaguwar]
  24. Helado Negro: "Illumina Vos" [Asthmatic Kitty]
  25. Steve Hauschildt: "Constant Reminders" [Kranky]
  26. Benoit Pioulard: "Hawkeye" [Kranky]
  27. Bill Baird: "Big Sur Reverie" [Pau Wau]
  28. Lansing-Dreiden: "Dividing Island" [Mexican Summer]
  29. Breathless: "Just for Today" [Tenor Vossa]

p.s. How great is Danielle Dax?



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