Sunday, July 31, 2005

beta invents the remix, engages in riddim warfare

i finally motivated myself to return to Central Park for the first time since i shivered under the slalom arches of the construction cone-colored Gates. the most money i ever paid for a concert was the Stooges, or as the Ticketmaster ticket read: "Iggy Pop at Tommy Hilfiger's" and so i figgered that i'd even things out by seeing the MC5/DKT3 summerstage show for free, my longing for Michigan's rock's sordid past, my moth-like desire to draw nearer the flame of such times, to see prunish legends time-machine me back, would be satiated. perhaps to partake in dope, guns, and fucking in the streets courtesy of the now-gray panthers. or, as time continues to devour itself in the 21st century, serpent tail inserted, past pushing into the present, much as the codices and ancient cultures predict, and blah blah blah to have such pungent nostalgia itself get remixed.
and who better to map out such a hapless conceit than dj spooky? although i'd like to blame my tardiness on saturday afternoon baseball and the shitty MTA service, a good deal of it my tail-dragging was in the hope that i could somehow avoid seeing that dude make a single utterance. it wasn't enough that i fell for the early reports of him being dubbed "the John Coltrane of Turntables" back in the mid-90s, spending too much money to own "Songs of a Dead Dreamer" on vinyl (full disclosure: i just re-listened to an old radio show i had on KSYM back in '96 where i mixed together Lee Ranaldo, Sun Ra, and dj spooky. that shit was ill-bent.). i also saw him twice on his heinous riddim warfare tour, where he not only kept flashing his copy of this and telling the audience every five minutes that they were all djs but he then proceeded to introduce all of his band as "djs": his drummer was "the drummer dj"; his guitarist was "the guitarist dj." that subliminal huckster then pretended that he could 1) play the electrik bass stik and 2) rap. and not only rap, but do it like Kool Keith did on his album. unforgiveable. especially since the second time around, he pulled the same schtick and said the same spiel, rote for rote.
sure enough, not even one minute after Marshall Allen and the Arkestra have left the stage in a line-dance, spooky is on the mic, telling me to look around at "the diversity and appreciate that. Put your hands out for that shit." spooky then implores the sound guy to turn up the turntables, his boosting hand apparently signalling for just high-end, as his ennervating backspins are now at an ear-puncturing level. "Kick out the Jams" goes into some skanking, a sped-up version of "In Da Club" that had Robert Davis Jr. spinning rapidly in his grave and a looong version of "Intergalactic." get it? okaaaay, it's all the same music to you, haplessly spun together to prove some point that it's all good or something. why is he unable to just 'kick out the jams'? and then wouldn't you know it, he starts djing Hendrix's "Star-Spangled Banner" just like the time Yancey saw him some five or more years ago! as i was not stoned, it really felt like it lasted thirty minutes.
i just kept praying that he wouldn't introduce Wayne Kramer as "the guitarist dj". wouldn't you know it though, just when i thought he would abdicate quietly, he told everyone that "it's all just a mixtape. it's about fucking remix culture." as if he fucking invented the mixtape. okay, okay, maybe he did invent remix culture.


Post a Comment

<< Home