Duck Down

I don’t know what to blog about these days, things don’t seem worth writing about, or I want to write about something that it doesn’t seem possible to write about.

For example, recently I’ve begun to get around this mental(?) block I had where I knew what notes to play on guitar or keyboard but always messed them up. I knew I could play the thing (whatever it was I was trying to play) cuz when my mind began to wander sometimes my hands would just move to the place they were supposed to be, a bit like typing a password. I’ve drifted from my point — I’ve begun to be able to not completely mess up everything I play and I wanted to write about that, then realised I have no idea how to do that.

Also I don’t want to build a little nest for myself and feel trapped by it, or have to leave a string of abandoned homes in the wake. It’s enough to have one physical home without having to represent yourself on the web, mebbe it would be easier if I was making very imaginary things/ places.

I bought some new musical stuff recently, was going to post about that (guitar, soundcard, microphone) and have been watching stuffs on YouTube that I could have blogged about (e.g. A few weeks ago I was listening to Serbian, Croatian and Yugoslavian bands on theYouTube, I found many that I liked). Then I felt like — Every way that I can imagine writing about these wonderful discoveries sounds so boring I’m not going to. Cos the excitement is in the doing but writing about it — bleh.

I might try posting again, some things that I don’t think are worth posting and see how ridiculous I feel.

A few years ago I thought, for a change, I’d venture into the world outside and get involved in stuff that was happening, meet people and do stuff; blog, make things. I thought I enjoyed some of the things I was doing, but now I have no idea what I enjoyed/whether I enjoyed anything/what enjoyment is. I’ve tried to re-evaluate everything that is evaluateable but I’m no clearer about anything.

I don’t know what to do with my time/self, I’m back to the idea that even were I healthier, any sort of life I’d want to live is impossible, things that I’d stumbled upon that seemed promising now seem so small and pale and thin; a trick masquerading as a treat; waking hours feel like they’re spent killing time until I go to sleep. What am I going to blog from here?

I’ve been in hiding/extended hibernation for a few months, I haven’t been anywhere, haven’t spoken to anyone (besides my mother and the occasional apartment maintenance person). I haven’t had the energy to do much, besides making/listening to music/watching web stuff. I’ve been more consistently unwell lately that I’ve been for a couple of years. The thought of having to meet anyone or go anywhere makes me anxious, the idea of blogging or tweeting or sending an email makes me nervous, all this is familiar territory.

I spose I haven’t posted about this cos 1) in hiding, 2) it seems somewhat melodramatic and goes no where — all of this is a dead end.

Anyway, that’s the “Why I haven’t been posting lately” post.

I have been making more songs; here are 4 I put on Bandcamp as a sort of EP, as they feel related.
I like these songs so much. They’re kinda scrappy, I’ve realised I like lo-fi sounds and that the lo-fi ness is not only cos of my lack of skillz. There were times that things became too shiny sounding which I did not like, and undid.

I’ve had the songs hanging around for a while, growing slowly like little plants. They have many vocal layers, sometimes I think the sound of my voice is the main thing going for my making of music. I’ve managed to come up with some album art too. I’m still using the same set up, just my voice and Logic MIDI instruments and am not even using the computer keyboard to input MIDI notes, I’m just using mouse clicks. I’m rubbish at playing instruments, some mental block situation I’ve not figured out yet.

"Falling In Line" is the first track, it has bell sounds (I like resonant metallic sounds) and the lyrics consist of "falling in line again" and oohs and aahs with punchy overamplified drum sounds underneath. It sounds somewhat like the way I’ve been feeling over the Winter period. I called it "falling in line" cos at the time I thought it sounded as though I was singing "falling in love again", which — just no.

"Remains" is the oldest song, a little bit shoegazy, I had stuff like this Demontré - Lorenheim in my head at the time and was listening to things that had that large hazy sound going on. It has an actual instrument on it (bass guitar) tho it’s not very obvious. The title is cos it was taken from part of anther song I had been messing with — the remainder of another thing.

"Lush (Ordinary Day)" is prob. the catchiest one, lots of layers of voice. Me trying to sing the chorus as tho I were Amy Winehouse kept causing microphone clipping cos I’m still using the Blue snowflake mic . The title is from my time of naming files by the first band that came into my head.

"Sherbet" is the short one at the end, also the most recently made; feels a bit similar to the opening song. Yes it is supposed to sound as tho I’m half asleep here. The title is cos I was trying to make a song that was kind of bubblegummy/lethargic and I had been reading about sherbet on Wikipedia. I’m not sure that the song is bubblegummy tho.

Bandcamp asks you to put in lyrics, but I still haven’t decided what they are or whether to make up words as an approximation of the sounds/put in all the variations of things I was singing/don’t put down any lyrics.

The songs are also on audioboo, here http://audioboo.fm/KCanard

I feel there have been many typos.

Another song. I am still learning the ways of Logic Pro 7 and other music related stuff.
Of those that I’ve made, this song is one of my favourites so far. I haven’t made anything that is kinda danc-y before, I don’t think.

The title “X It Down” is cos most of the song I was singing … it down; I can’t really remember what (“Burn it down, tear it down, let me down, hand me down” that kind of thing), I was making it up as I went along. And also in the chorus the words alternated between things like
“Don’t sit how you would”, “dancing hollywood” etc.
but I think the second line is definitely
“You’re going on, you’ve got a goat on”, tho it sounds at time like “you’ve got it going on”.

I suppose the reason I’m going on about the words is that I feel somewhat as though I’m not doing things in a legitimate fashion, just making things up. I have tried coming up with lyrics pre song and hasn’t worked so far.

As an aside, it”s the first time ever really noticed the effects of mp3 compression.

And I have to point out this song that I heard a few days ago for the first time. Kap Bambino - New Breath

Anyway, I am now returning to hibernation.

Link to audioboo page is here

I tried to keep a note of every song that “played” in my mind throughout one day (while awake). I only noted songs that hung around for more than two minutes or so. I might have missed some as I don’t always notice them. Some songs recurred, but I only noted each song once.

__ Saturday 00:00

Pop Muzik — M
City Of Angels — The Distillers
Beat Your Heart Out — The Distillers
Trash — The Whip
My Puppet Pal —Tiger
A Fond Farewell — Elliot Smith
Laura — Scissor Sisters
Time Tunnel Cellar — Tiger
Calcutta — The Names
Tick Tick Boom —The Hives
Hollaback Girl — Gwen Stefani
Milkshake — Kelis
Would I Lie To You — Charles And Eddie
Drain The Blood — The Distillers
Metal Guru — T-Rex
Isobel — Bjork
Close Your Eyes (‘Xxx’ Mix)— Acen
Beverly Hills — Weezer

__ 10:00, I went to sleep

__ 14:00, I woke up

Little Boys Blue — Kinky Machine
Call Me Names — Echobelly
Gooseberry Fool — Kinky Machine
B Is For Brutus — The Hives
Antidote — The Hives
The Bends — Radiohead
Myxomatosis — Radiohead

__ 18:00 Fell asleep again and didn’t wake up till about 03:00 the next day (i.e. Sunday).

—-

Just re-read the above. It sounds terse. Am I usually terse? I don’t know.

And after discovering music which was not only the stuff on Top of The Pops, the temptation was to become a music snob, as a defence mechanism, and sneer at “the mass” and set yourself up as the member of some kind of cognoscenti. But I couldn’t manage that cos lots of stuff I liked was very popular, but mainly cos I couldn’t take pleasure in sneering at the music that other people genuinely enjoyed.

The music newspapers (and magazines) used to upset me (cos they were full of sneer) but I still bought them and cut stuff out which I stuck on my wall. Below is a picture of my bedroom circa 1993 (edit: I think it’s 1994). Posters/cut out things include Nirvana, Oasis, Suede, Manics, Tricky, Morrisey, Echobelly, PJ Harvey, Weezer, Smashing Pumpkins and others (there’s a picture of that Paul Whitehouse character that sez everything’s “brilliant”).

The reason I go on about popularity of music is cos it was only the Blurs and the Pulps that I could mention to my friends, otherwise they were like “who?”, which simultaneously pleased and disappointed me.

Previous related post.

When I was little I had this naive idea that the reason anyone was writing in a national newspaper, or had a book a in good bookshops everywhere, or had CDs in high street record shops was cos they deserved to be there, they were not only good but they were the best. This made the fact that I didn’t like the most of this stuff even more upsetting. The implication of their ubiquity was that everyone likes this stuff, why don’t you, what’s wrong with you?

The attention, or the implied attention, of all those people (the public) made mass media entities seem like unassailable authorities to me. It took the internet to help me realise that newspapers, book publishers, record labels, movie studios, music journalists were not what I’d thought; were not the arbiters of good judgement/taste, the people who held culture in their grasp, without whom we’d live in a wasteland. Creativity and skill weren’t as scarce as I’d come to believe.

Tho, I still have a problem even knowing when I like something. I was brought up to ignore my own liking or disliking or indifference (that sounds a bit like a joke, but isn’t).

Today I have delusions of adequacy. Probably won’t last long.

This past year I have been mostly —
Dismissing myself, especially my former self. Trivialising what I loved and what mattered to me. Cuz now you’ve “grown up” and you get praise for “growing up”, doing adult things, pretending you endorse values that are “good and proper and necessary” but make you sick, cuz, y’know you’re supposed to “put away childish things”.

And the impetus for any “grown up” behaviour is actually my desperation to get acknowledgement/praise from others and to fit in (which don’t seem like very grown up motives). And also the fatigue from justifying my behaviour to myself (or others) cuz the world indicates that this behaviour x is not normal/healthy/correct/worthwhile.

With a fear that this is the way you have to live — directing yourself by precepts that you despise — if you want to live in some kinda physical comfort. Although I’m telling myself that this isn’t true and hating myself for cowardice.

I’ve lived so long thinking that the best I could ever hope for was a pat on the head — good dog.

I’ve been suppressing this realisation — the emptiness of praise/acknowledgement and the worthlessness of pursing it. Suppressing it cuz I know that this is my automatic method of conducting myself and I don’t know how else to behave.

I’m not sure how much of the past 2 1/2 years have been a bad idea. A lot. Lots of picking up of habits that seemed like “improvements” but were only partially so. Were I well enough I’d be looking for a new city in which to live. Or country.

Tired of trying to reconfigure the pieces, now I’m like, fuck the pieces; I want to throw everything away. (I have discovered much amazing musics in the past 2 and a half years, so was not all rubbish.)

'Scuse any LOLcattery in my writing. All the seriousness of previous posts is boring me now. I'm doing non sequiturs, keeping on track is rarely satisfying and sometimes feels contrived, but not anything else (e.g. contrived but clever).

There are tenets/presumptions, that like memes I’ve willingly allowed myself to be infected by. Despite several “god, what the fuck am I doing?” moments of supposed realisation there’s still a sense that things are horribly wrong.

I have much reassessing to do, and (metaphorically speaking) a manifesto to re-write.

I spent most of yesterday playing my guitar and bass, in the making up of songs (I’m not very good at playing guitars, but I enjoy it). I have at last acquired an adapter thing, so I can plug the guitar into the line-in audio thing on my Mac.

I spent far too many hours doing this playing of the guitar; now am tired. Hours after I put the guitars down, I’m still thinking of songs, and trying to move bits around, add bits, change this or that section etc. I can’t relax or rest.

I have a habit of turing a very fun thing into a horrible chore and pain. There’s this compulsion to continue, that something awful will happen if I stop. This usually leads to me becoming ill. I can’t say “OK enough, finished for now”. Running away from a thing only to find you’ve run headlong into it. Cos it’s not out there at all, really, so attempting to flee is kinda silly.

Silly.

Being around people who have a tale about themselves, have roles in the world, I realise I don’t have a role, can’t tell you a tale. Without one I am currencyless. Can’t indicate that I would be of value to anyone. “What do you do?” — Many things, mediocrely.

I don’t know whether I’m fed up not having a decent tale, or fed up with this desperate search for one. Or both.

I’m tired and yet restless and anxious.

Yesterday night, when I’d usually have been awake and probably writing, I was ridiculously tired and nauseous; the way I used to be when I had “work” weighing on me far too heavily. I went to sleep at around midnight (I think). This sorta thing is often a sign of ill at ease.

I’m trying to figure out what yesterday’s goodbye feeling was about. I have a few ideas — none of them pleasant, it’s making me nervous. I’m scared to (possibly) be saying goodbye to things I value.

For the past few days I’ve gone sortof numb, and everything’s very quiet, feel as though I’ve got earplugs in. I’m like “My god you’re boring”. I’m kind of scared that my mind has stopped working. This usually means I’m in information sponge mode, or working-things-out mode.

I have a feeling that something is coming to an end. Tho I don’t know what.
This isn’t a cryptic, coded message, I just sense that something is almost over. A goodbye feeling.