One of the milestone moments of 2012 was the death of my Father, Derek Newport. At some point I’ll post something about how I feel about his death, but its not the time at the moment with the world stuck in the winter blues.
However two music related pieces that struck me cold this morning.
One of my favourite musicians Wilko Johnson is talking on the BBC about how he feels now that he’s been diagnosed with Terminal Cancer.
“The things that used to bring me down, or worry me, or annoy me, they don’t matter anymore – and that’s when you sit thinking ‘Wow, why didn’t I work this out before? Why didn’t I work out before that it’s just the moment you’re in that matters?’
“Worrying about the future or regretting the past is just a foolish waste of time. Of course we can’t all be threatened with imminent death, but it probably takes that to knock a bit of sense into our heads.”
Meanwhile another one of my favourite musicians, and friend, Keef Baker has a new lp out inspired by the death of his father last year, under his Nimon moniker which is him doing ambient using only a guitar.
Keith ‘keef’ baker has been a musician for over 20 years and has worked in a very wide range of styles. his output of side projects since the last ‘keef baker’ release shows just some of the stylistic range. ‘sharps injury’: powernoise, ‘ocdc’: complextro, ‘crackpuncher’: grindcore, even comedic ebm: ‘mandro1d’. not to mention various micro-projects and collaborations. but nimon is something different, something much more personal. written at a time just before and not long after the death of a close family member when nothing was soothing his soul except the intensely pure sounds of brian eno, sunn o)), stars of the lid, christian fennesz and their ilk. the intention behind nimon was to create ambient music by deploying the limitless potential of the electric guitar as the only instrumentation, pouring the pain he was feeling into his playing and then tearing those recordings into pieces using sound design, reversing, pitch manipulation, time stretching and a whole world of both standard effects and maxforlive modulations resulting in deep, majestic ambient compositions, developing dense worlds of ethereal, dreamy atmospheres. with ‘drowning in good intentions’ nimon manages the remarkable feat of channeling deep emotion into a sound that’s uncompromisingly advanced and cerebral. a constant flow of superior, shimmering drones, melodic and cinematic with a dark, but sweetly sorrowful elegiac quality. ‘drowning in good intentions’ is a simultaneously a trip into despair, grief and hope.