Interviews

Mene, Mene, Tekel u-Pharsin

April 30, 2009

Or, the writing on the Wall…

Just a quick pointer to the new issue of ParisTransatlantic that amongst other goodies contains my interview with John Wall. There are some interesting points raised within it that might be worth further discussion. I do want to publicly thank John for his patience and co-operation with this though. I can be a real pain to work with, just ask Dan 😉 The interview is here, the rest of the magazine here.

Comments (9)

  • Brian Olewnick

    April 30, 2009 at 1:16 pm

    Nice job, Richard.

  • Doug Holbrook

    April 30, 2009 at 1:34 pm

    A very good read Richard..

  • graham halliwell

    May 1, 2009 at 4:41 pm

    “There are some interesting points raised within it that might be worth further discussion.”

    Doesn’t look like it Richard. John has raised too many ‘home truths’ about the music, musicians and critics under discussion for any of us to have the balls to respond.

  • Phil Julian

    May 1, 2009 at 5:38 pm

    Hard to disagree with any of it. John makes his case(s) extremely well (as he always does in person).

    The interview is great, thanks Richard. You’ve manage to distill a lot of his concerns and caught a nice snapshot of where he is at the present moment. Superb.

  • graham halliwell

    May 1, 2009 at 5:57 pm

    Agreed. Soberingly, and inspirationally, pessimistic.

  • Phil Julian

    May 1, 2009 at 6:08 pm

    As is clear in the interview, it’s pessimism as a result of being stuck in the quandary of finding much of what is around you useless, dishonest and lazy but still stubbornly refusing to give up on it.

    Not an easy place to be, particularly when you’re attempting something creative.

  • jon abbey

    May 1, 2009 at 8:15 pm

    “it’s pessimism as a result of being stuck in the quandary of finding much of what is around you useless, dishonest and lazy but still stubbornly refusing to give up on it.”

    it’s funny to me that my extremely similar perspective results in a lot more anger than John’s, probably because it’s more public, I guess, or maybe because I occasionally name names. I agree that John’s self-imposed standards have put him into an extremely difficult position as an artist, I really hope he emerges at some point with something that he feels adds to his earlier work.

    I have a different macro perspective on John’s work from Richard, FWIW, as a long-time observer and a casual acquaintance of his (since maybe 2001 or 2002?). Richard says in the interview: “Something I find very interesting is that as you began to take longer and longer over putting the pieces together, with each album getting shorter but taking considerably longer than the one before it to create, the music also somehow manages to sound progressively more natural, more organic, if you will.”

    my impression as a listener is that John was gradually approaching nothingness, squeezing his own work into oblivion, shorter and shorter with less and less content, and for me, my favorites are the last two full-lengths, Fractuur and Constructions I-IV (my taste in general is towards full-length CDs over EPs, so I’m sure that factors in also.) the last time I listened to them all in a row was just after Cphon came out, so I’m due to revisit them sometime.

  • jon abbey

    May 1, 2009 at 8:16 pm

    and I should say also, thanks for doing this, Richard, very worthwhile read and I’m glad it’s out there.

  • billphoria

    June 7, 2009 at 12:13 am

    Thank you for interview and piquing my interest enough to purchase some of Wall’s discs…;absolutely LOVE this music;reminds me quite a bit of Alfred 23 Harth’s somewhat similar work,especially some of his less “jazz”-based music,such as, “Seoul Milk”…

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