Wednesday, September 28, 2005

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Unknown - "Oh Girl, Stand Up"
Unknown - "Pride of the Nation"

I've pondered the Sublime Frequencies label before, be it in Burma, India, or Sumatra, their dreamworlds aswirl in my cloudy head. In discussing the music of Iraq and N. Korea down in Miami though, it was hard to remain swaddled in such sonic reverie. Stuck inside the fences and boxes provided (be it on TV or in the delivery service), it's tough to be roused awake. For once, SF eschews dream collage for ever-waking reality. Call it Mission Accomplished.

Where do these discs fit in though? Is the label trying to be relevant? As Alan Bishop put it in a recent issue of Arthur magazine: "Don't be fooled by the fear patrol out there who say that terror is only a minute away. It's all an illusion…The fear of terror being spread is a tactic employed as a mirage to keep the herd from experiencing phenomena beyond the pasture." Rather than trade in sensationalism, it reveals these highly-pressurized, brutally repressed cultures and how music comes forth under such duress. Both the Iraq and Pyongyang discs resound in the present rather than in dream. Which is a somewhat chilly way to have to wake up these days.

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