The second-to-last volume in the ten-part CREEL PONE SOUND STUDY SERIES—-a sequence of chapbooks inspired by the reissues of historic electronic-music albums from the 40’s through the 70’s on the Creel Pone label—- is now available, KSE #109, ELECTRONIC MYTH by Stuart Crutchfield and Bill Shute, Creel Pone Sound Study #9. The musical catalyst for this one is Jürgen Karg’s 1977 release “Elektronische Mythen”, written about by Julian Cope in his “Unsung” column at Head Heritage( http://www.headheritage.co.uk/unsung/review/1021 ). The little-known Mr. Karg played bass on a Wolfgang Dauner album and has obscure connections with the furthest-out branches of Krautrock, but his album is one of those works that seemingly comes out of nowhere, creates a unique and mind-bending alternate world, and then vanishes having covered up all footsteps. We’ve used the music in different ways in creating the other Creel Pone chapbooks: sometimes the structural elements of the music are transposed to the poetry; sometimes thematic concerns are adapted to the poetry; sometimes the music becomes a soundtrack for the film in my/our head, which gets transcribed onto the page; sometimes the juxtapositions and counterpoint within the music inspire similar juxtapositions and counterpoint in the poetry; other times we’ve used other methods. This time, Stu and I did a kind of scrying with the music as our mirror, producing eight different angles of vision into the murky depths of that musical mirror, a swirling series of shards of narrative, offering the readers the tips of the icebergs, but letting the readers navigate the waters themselves. When the eight pages are over, you’ll feel like you’ve just emerged from the funhouse at the amusement park: eyes getting used to the light, awkwardly un-latching the seatbelt and stepping out of your cart back into the “real” world, overfull with vivid imagery and the sense of having been taken somewhere, with feelings both familiar and disquieting. If Ted Berrigan, The Red Crayola, The Faust Tapes, Jean-Luc Godard, or Pere Ubu’s “New Picnic Time” interest you, this chap is up your alley. If you’re unfamiliar with those references, don’t worry—you’re seeing an Altman film with eight subplots and a consistent musical score tying it all together. We’ve just taken away the musical score.
Working with Glasgow’s Stuart Crutchfield is always a pleasure, and it’s good to have him back in action again after his “missing period” in Australia (written about in his soon-to-be-soldout chapbook OZZIFIED). Remember, Stu’s band SMOKE JAGUAR have a cd out called “The Old Toll”, and they should be issuing more over the next year. Here’s the Volcanic Tongue write-up on the album:
Debut release from this Glasgow-based guitar/blood/drums duo featuring Kevin McCarvel on bass and guitar and Stuart Crutchfield (who has already had a few poetry books published by Bill Shute’s Kendra Steiner Editions) on guitar and drums. They play the kind of supremely wasted rock demolition jags that would see guitars torn to shreds of fuzz and static ala The Dead C’s Russell/Morley tag-team balanced with the kind of primitive prog/psych disembowelment of Bryan Ramirez’s Ex-Cocaine, Dead White, Skullflower, Ashtray Navigations et al. If you like your guitars running on translucent electricity and plugged into huge fangs of fuzz then here’s your mainline. So jack the f*ck up. Edition of only 27 hand-numbered copies on their own label in hard card sleeves and hi-quality plastic slips. Recommended.
Congrats on that, Stu. As for me, I’ve been taking a hiatus from the poetry world, both writing and publishing, for the last two weeks. Every once in a while I need to put it away and then come back to it with a fresh eye and a new enthusiasm. I’ve been working with A.J. Kaufmann on a suite of poems inspired by the TIBETAN BOOK OF THE DEAD, and both of us have been filling our respective notebooks with lines and phrases and ideas; AND I’m working with Christopher Cunningham on the final details of his new chapbook IN GAMBLER’S BLOOD, an incredible poetic study of poker and by extension gambling and by extension life. This is KSE #110, and it will be available within a week to ten days. Each one will come with an original artwork by Mr. Cunningham, and all for just four dollars US/five dollars overseas.
We definitely offer a diverse catalog of chapbooks at KSE. Look at #108, 109, and 110: Debbie Kirk’s visceral BROKEN, then the experimental ELECTRONIC MYTH, then the diamond-sharp understated tension of Christopher Cunningham’s IN GAMBLER’S BLOOD.
As Arthur Magazine once said about KSE, we are looking to get people interested in and excited about poetry as a living vibrant flexible and ever-becoming artform, and we want people to get into it without having to spend much money or to associate themselves with any clique or to swallow any aesthetic agenda. There are many fine small presses out there doing fine work: Bottle of Smoke, Erbacce, Scintillating Editions, Concrete Meat, Xerx, Effing, Ugly Duckling, Chuckwagon, and hundreds more. Check them out. Buy their offerings as you can afford them–along with KSE’s of course. Lend them to your friends. Plug them on your blogs. I’m 110% behind any outfit following its vision and making that vision become real, leaving a legacy of solid and distinctive work that will continue to grow and will provide the seeds that will inspire younger poets to pick up the baton and run with it. That’s what it’s all about.
As always, thank you for your orders and your support. CC’s new chapbook will be KSE #110, and right now we still have the most recent 12-15 still available, so check the “Available KSE Poetry Chapbooks” page to your right for ordering information. Our early books from two years ago are already selling for $10-12 in collectors’ circles and will surely escalate beyond that. Even my first Word Mechanics book TWELVE GATES TO THE CITY is already selling for $22.40 on Amazon (cover price in 1996 was $8.00). So act now or pay someone else too much later.