I brush the carpet

I thought it could be magic.
I clean the dirt out of it
The years,
the steps,
the last kiss.
I brush it
I strike it
I want it immaculate
without losing the dirty memories
The steps forwards, the ones backwards,
who cares for the direction
when stomping on a forbidden zone?
I wash it, I paint it again
– if necessary –
I paint a new frame
I weave it again
as all this were gone;
I paint it blue and green
like the once-had-a dream
I change it to change
the truth in vain
as if the water could wash from it the pain away.

Addiction

“A case study of the effects
of psychotropic substances
on grown-up middle-aged men”
by William Wordsworth.

That one will eat you
from inside out
reversing you like an
old holed sock
excavating your cheeks
defeating your age.
That one will instead
slowly make you its
own,
glowing in a singing swan
grasping your head like an
old deadly hag.
It swallows you up the same way as
it took in you its domain.
That one will teach you
it’s better not to
overdo, not to overdose,
if your mind cannot charge anymore
the path of your own, personal thought
– your proactivity –
in horror vacui slammed out.

The only one I know
though
has a liver and a heart
two lungs-wings
a fucking hot tongue.
What should I do when
already now I want the then?
Tell me the cure, give me the potion,
the secret ingredient that can
give me my candor back.

I feel safe in your fish eye
in the time you can’t define
I get joy out of denying
how dirty,
dirty rainbow am I.

Million faces blue
and my love, away,
the same colour too.

Addiction.
What I cause
What I accuse.

 

 

It’s easier to live under the blanket

I challenge myself in dreams
– never in danger, always on the alert –
I cannot die and even get touched
but
I run, I run, I fight, I’m chased
constantly, they’re closer, so near
I can feel my fear
without losing grace
I just focus and rise!

But I bounce here and there
my focus unfocused by fear
again, they are so near…

Now I’m awake
enough for tonight, challenge denied.

Untitled (about beauties and beasts and my naivety)

There are people with beautiful feelings
seeing people with beautiful feelings shining
like beautiful people hiding
beautiful feelings.

And there are people with less beautiful feelings
seeing people with less beautiful feelings shining
like beautiful people hiding
less beautiful feelings.

There are people with horrible feelings
seeing people with horrible feelings shining
like beautiful people hiding
nothing like beautiful feelings.

Following the body

Feeling feels somehow different now:
I don’t know if I can
– oh, sure do I; but
I mean if I really can –
translate the buzzes in my brain;
anyone gets an analyst nowadays
I am still waiting for mine to take
my dirty laundry, to wash it,
my dirty dishes, to lick it,
even though reluctant I fight
against my own unwillingness.

I cry for the dolphins
– is it egoism too?
I may be a folded pine
when the water’s so blue
caught in rifles of chloride:
like the last requested smile
on the pond,
before you
drown and, finally
get lost
freed by submission

Eh?

Don’t get lost

Submission is freeing me?
No, I don’t think so
I may be apologetic…
But no, I don’t think so –
I just look at the stars
– so far, so true –
they are alcohol and dope
I am far, if I can feel them too
so near, so bright,
yet dark as night
– that’s their meaning of existence:
feeling disconnected
to everything connected.


The title is an homage to Zanias, from the music track “Follow the body”, To the core EP, 2016. This record and her whole production are amazing, by the way.

The eclectic rock of Verdena: 20 years anniversary (and still I want more)

There’s a band, who wanted to be (the) Verbena but someone else got the name first, and so became Verdena, not the divine plant anymore, just the name of the best rock band I’ve gotten to know. With a lot of personal affection in it, yes.

Attonito, Wow, 2011

They started playing in 1995 in an old henhouse, just teenagers, two brothers and, couple of years later, a bassist. They started taking great inspiration from the grunge of Nirvana, publishing the first album, Verdena, in 1999, with the independent Italian Black Out, label born from the idea of promoting underground music with the means of a major, the owner Universal (and despite how it sounds, I would say it worked, considering also the other names supported).
Since their debut, and even before with their demo tapes, it is clear that Verdena have something special, a sound that is hard, melodic, complex, full of references from the greatest of rock, yet fresh and distinctive.

Il Gulliver, Requiem, 2007

Verdena grew up with me (or viceversa): I discovered them with their third album, Il suicidio dei samurai, and immediately started to listen to everything from their past. The result became an ongoing addiction.

Logorrea, Il suicidio dei samurai, 2004

Their cultural background is impressive but not surprising: they are big fans of the Beatles (that, ahem, I personally don’t like… yes I know, but), Interpol, Nirvana, Flaming Lips, to cite some. And every album expresses a new side, or maturity, of their sound, always carrying their timber, yet always unexpected and magnificent. When you think they have released their best album, the next one will change your mind.

Puzzle, Endkadenz vol. 1, 2015

So, what happened? Verdena, the first album, was grunge. Clearly. They were just 18, with introverted personalities, rebel: Kurt was the muse, their first inspiration. Solo un grande sasso (Just a big stone), the second album, is a new story: psychedelic and ambitious, with long complex tracks. The dark melancholy started with the second album gets emphasized in the third, Il suicidio dei samurai (The suicide of the Samurai), and almost disappears with Requiem, despite the title, that brings back their grunge but grown-up attitude. Then the double album Wow, Endkadenz Vol. 1 and Vol. 2… I prefer to leave (personal) descriptions aside and suggest you some tracks to listen to and get your personal idea.

Sotto prescrizione del dott. Huxley, Requiem, 2007

Since when I moved abroad, I’ve started to realize that, aside from the main genre, every country, even the closest ones (Austria and Italy, where I live and where I was born, for example), has a personal way to translate it, that implies that culture too. In my case, I am a big fan of the (old) Italian songwriters, I like that mix of tradition and sperimentation, that being politically engaged, poetic, idealistic; that decadent yet still brilliant flair of a brilliant yet decadent country. Lucio Battisti, Franco Battiato, Fabrizio De André, Rino Gaetano to cite a few. But I can also try (hard) to see it from an external point of view and understand that, together with the (indisputable) beauty of an execution, the emotional involvement plays a key role. That’s the best part of art. 

Fuoco amico 2 (pela i miei tratti), Endkadenz Vol. 2, 2015

 

 

Head image taken from rollingstone.it

Kunst am Kanal – Art into the (Danube) flow

As you may know, Vienna is a city that developed in the proximity of the Danube. A former arm of it, the Donaukanal (Danube Canal) delimits the city centre, and it is a cozy urban yet green place to hang out, especially during summer. Along its path there are free areas for making graffiti, public vegetables gardens, outdoor exhibitions, many small and bigger bars, and the most interesting clubs (for example Grelle Forelle, which I mentioned more than once previously). And many different music and art events take place here, free events where people can gather in a chill setting.

Couple of weeks ago it was Kunst am Kanal, Art on the Canal, organized by the club Das Werk in cooperation with its two art ateliers, Lichtbogen 334, the nest of the visual artists from the collective 4youreye projectionArt, and Dachsbau, a co-working space for artists to rent and exhibit their work. Das Werk means “the factory”, but also “the art work”, and that’s what this club promotes aside from music.

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA
Dachsbau and Lichtbogen 334, side on the Kanal

Contemporary art can be easily seen as snobbish, due to its hermetic messages and aesthetics, the high prices and the steered value, not necessarily based on pure talent (see my post about Roberta Sinatra and her study that analyses the trends in the art business). It’s the underground facet, instead, that can offer a glimpse of closeness to a wider audience and become part of a bigger context, integrating into the surrounding of music, drinks and good vibes. The final result is not individual anymore, rather a sum of different contributions, styles, perceptions, points of view; and the location, even if the same one, acquires each time a new unique appearance.

Moreover, these events can also give the possibility to minor and free-time artists, or simply creative talents, to express themselves: collaborations and projects can bloom, most likely not for decorating a fancy loft, rather for creating a collective experience.

Noemi
Noemi Kiss, Galerie Helmut, Das Werk (pic by Noemi Kiss)

The new huge graffiti of two hands exposing the teeth of a ferocious dog was mapped by the visualists collective 4youreye for projecting colourful visuals that gave a whole different feeling of it; at Werk a new exhibition space offered a solo from Noémi Kiss, an architect and philosopher (and woman that I deeply admire) who rose in the last six years as conceptual artist, using simple and poor materials (concrete, carpets as example) to give them new shape and purpose. In this occasion she presented five different reinterpretations of three-dimensionality recreated on beautiful antique Persian carpets hung on the walls, creating a door –or a window– for the viewer to look into.
And then much more is offered, involving all different forms of performative arts, and the music: live concerts during the daylight, dj sets at night, offering a wide range of styles and sound.

Eckhart Derschmidt
Kunst am Kanal 2019 (pic from Facebook by Eckhart Derschmidt)

A special paragraph deserves Lichtbogen 334, with its dark ambience particularly fitting to the projections introduced: a “digital mirror” altering colours and movement, that I already mentioned in the post about the Playground Festival; a panel with two plaster cast faces emerging out of it, one happy one sad, lightened by changing shapes and patterns; two lysergic skulls decorating the shutters that divide the exposition space from the storage for the 4youreye equipment.

20190810_005021

20190810_005033

20190810_005029
Haselbusch, Lichtbogen 334

The Kunst am Kanal festival takes place once a year, but still there are many other events where lights, colours and moods mix together to create the special atmosphere that characterises this part of the Kanal. All this arty melting pot just opposite to the District Heating Plant designed by Friedensreich Hundertwasser, a famous Austrian artist I will definitely talk about, and just adjacent to a complex of buildings ideated by Zaha Hadid, uncompleted due to financial cuts and changes that – rumors say – made the architect not satisfied anymore with the project to the point that she wanted her name dissociated from it. Still, these buildings are masterpieces here for us to admire and, thanks to these occasions, to rediscover in a different light.

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA
District Heating Plant, Friedensreich Hundertwasser
OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA
Zaha-Hadid-Haus, part of the building complex

Confessions of a minstrel

Dear readers,

sorry I am not a good blogger. I cannot produce constant content, I write only when something really catches my interest and my attention (and my inspiration too…). I write to promote good art, good music, good events. I overthink my writings, because I want them to be precise, well written, of high quality. On the Internet, as a blogger (although I don’t feel this label so much) among million bloggers, I choose quality over quantity. I choose to talk about what positively inspires me, I have no interest in openly criticizing something I haven’t appreciated, because I think there is already enough negativity and criticism around and I want to be on the positive side; maybe it simply wasn’t my taste, maybe I didn’t get it –therefore, I won’t recommend it to you.

This said (to slightly justify myself too), it’s summertime here, and I may have partially put aside my hunger for culture; you can still decide to scroll through the old posts and read about Mark Rothko, about the exhibition Beauty from the designers Stefan Sagmeister and Jessica Walsh, about the visionary architects and artists Lucio and Duilio Forte, about the interview with Electric Indigo. I am sure you will find something appealing for your taste.

I am taking this time also to rethink about my blog, about what I’ve learned, about what I would like to change or improve. It’s been a year now, and many things have grown!

I would like to conclude with a poem I’ve written some time ago (not yet inserted in my poetry page) that nicely fits to this post. It is still raw, sounds a bit like a song from a minstrel: and minstrel, rather than blogger, is how I feel.

All my gratitude if you have followed me through this, and my warmest welcome if you have just started to read me.

See you the next chapter.

 

How to avoid disappearing

I sit and listen to music.
Nothing more, nothing less.
Nothing
else.
I am wasting my time

because I technically do
nothing.

Tic toc tic toc
Time is running and you are not producing
Tic toc tic toc
Time is passing and you are still unmoved
Wear your coat, get to work,
don’t be absurd
about live for love.

I am totally with you,
I need my dreams to come true.
Reality is tough, though,
even worse than
silence in ropes,
even if I change,
I can’t change.
Even if I change,
why do I?
To conformize?
Why do I?

Modify my shape
Shape my body
Get healthier, more active
Stop compromising

I sit and listen to music.

The unbearable lightness of techno: SHXCXCHCXSH

I am still in awe about what happened last Friday. I was, as often, wandering in Grelle Forelle thanks to my sixth sense (aka Dead Sea Diaries together with Meat Market, the organisers of the night, which both are a guarantee of high quality music delivery); yet there was something new, something different in the atmosphere. I could only arrive when SHXCXCHCXSH started to play, but something went magical.

SLVRBBL, from the album “STRGTHS”, 2012, Avian

There is no way to find any common dancing move while listening to them: the bass is predominant, unpredictable, broken, visceral, the sound is cold, melodic, dark, magnetic; it is truly a whole new-level experience, for the ones like me who love deep and hard techno music; but also for people interested in new sounds, and with the right amount of emotional firmness… I cannot hide the obscure and gloomy intensity that soaks every track they produce (and only play during their sets, apparently), their appearance under a black hood resembling two dark knights, the repetition of the same loop like a growing mantra; but damn it feels so good…

Wading guise, from “Linear S Decoded”, 2014, Avian

They come from Sweden, and the comparison between the coldness of their sound with that of their hometown is banal…but reasonable. They debuted in 2012 with their first full-lenght album “STRGTHS”, presenting already their trademark sound with an opening (SLVRBBL) recalling something in between Gregorian chants and Irish fairy-tale music (Scarborough fair anyone?), then straight to a mechanical, vibrational strength. Surprising everyone with the second “Linear S Decoded”, still a powerful release, but introducing a different sound, more harmonious with respect to the first. SHXCXCHCXSH somehow remind me of Mark Rothko: the decision of not showing themselves, of being simply the means through which transmitting the music; and the unpronounceable name and choice for the last album  “SsSsSsSsSsSsSsSs”, the tracks named by increasing number of paired Ss. No wonder, though: there’s no need of titles, I would almost define it as a concept album, where every track is the prosecution of the previous one, in a growing pathos that ends up in a paranoid robotic sound that disturbs and doesn’t let go.

SsSsSsSsSsSsSsSsSsSsSsSsSs (13th track), from “SsSsSsSsSsSsSsSs”, 2016, Avian

Darkness, it is often called; and darkness is, we are deep in the lowest frequencies here, out of any melody resembling a whatsoever musical instrument, in the core of the sound of the machine, yet reaching straight the most sensitive parts of the body. The music gets to its essentials, to the emphasized beat, to the most touching of its appearances. And not in a minimalistic way, on the contrary: the lack of high melodies is balanced by the richness of the middle-lower frequencies, the sound getting at the same time grounded and alien. It is repetitive, persistent, cold; and coldness was a strong feeling for me too, during their live set, while I was overwhelmed by the constantly changes in the bass, by the biting and hypnotic sound that opened a hole under my feet and had me falling in the hell of heaven.

PCTSTSS, from “STRGTHS”, 2012, Avian

Of course, I’m a writer, I (love to) tell stories, I try to reproduce with written words what I experience with my eyes and toes (eyes being the mind, toes being the heart when it comes to music, An). I do also think that techno, but I can say music, but I can say art, brings out the best of me. It makes me feel good, positive, hopeful, honest; it makes me think we can still experiment, discover, share, love.

 

The head image is taken from the official Facebook page of SHXCXCHCXSH. The title of the post is an obvious quote of the book “The unbearable lightness of being” from Milan Kundera, one of my most favourite (book and author).

Sources taken from:

Resident advisor

Ondarock