25 April 2010
Sheer Hellish Miasma - Rock As Pure Energy, Live
I have been listening to three key archival releases recently of three seminal rock acts of the past 3 decades. There are 3 things which hit me whenever I press play on my player and the first noise emits from the speakers which cause the membranes covering the cones to tremor and shake involuntarily for the next hour or so. First, the 3 CDs are about the pure manifestation of rock as catharsis, to purge oneself of the decadent and materialist grime which we have been accumulating since birth; secondly, rock as disruption, to upset the status quo of the current staid music scene of the moment, to shake everyone up; and lastly, rock as molten energy released by a group of individuals cohering together for that brief moment on stage. We are talking about rock as transcendence basically.
Even if we discuss the three groups in more or less conventional rock instrumentation of guitar(s), bass, drums and human vox, we are actually witnessing rock as avantgarde's drive towards excess and ecstasy. The Stooges, Harry Pussy and the various Grindcore/Earache bands at the BBC epitomise rock's ability to move millions in the first place since the 1950s. But the 3 groups took it one step further by pushing rock upwards to volcanic release of human psychic and physical tension.
I regret to say that, today, I can't seem to find such energy in rock. I am of course not being retrospective for the sake of it as we all understand that even back in the 1970s, 1980s and 1990s, it was difficult to find rock bands similar in calibre of the three above-mentioned. But I am looking forward to see the rise of another rock act who can show me the way in the new decade of the 2010s.
3 Essential Live Recordings:
1. The Stooges - You Don’t Want My Name You Want My Action: 1971 The Missing Link
2. Various - Grind Madness At The BBC: The Earache Peel Sessions
3. Harry Pussy - You Will Never Play This Town Again