Sunday, 14 March 2010

Hold Everything Dear

After a long run of Huxley novels, I’ve finally broken the chain with John Berger, recommended by one of the Dark Mountain founders. The book Hold Everything Dear by Berger is a collection of essays on resistance and survival, which opens with the following poem. It struck me as acutely relevant, so sad and beautiful, I had to reprint and share it.

Hold Everything Dear

for John Berger

as the brick of the afternoon stores the rose heat of the journey

as the rose buds a green room to breathe
and blossoms like the wind

as the thinning birches whisper their silver stories of the wind to the urgent in the trucks

as the leaves of the hedge store the light
that the moment thought it had lost

as the nest of her wrist beats like the chest of a wren in the turning air

as the chorus of the earth find their eyes in the sky
and unwrap them in each other in the teeming dark

hold everything dear

the calligraphy of birds across the morning
the million hands of the axe, the soft hand of the earth
one step ahead of time
the broken teeth of tribes and their long place
steppe-scattered and together
clay’s small, surviving handle, the near ghost of a jug
carrying itself towards us through the soil

the pledge of offered arms, the single sheet that is our common walking
the map of the palm held
in a knot
but given as a torch

hold everything dear

the paths they make towards us and how far we open towards them

the justice of a grass that unravels palaces but shelters the songs of the searching

the vessel that names the waves, the jug of this life, as it fills with the days as it sinks to become what it loves

memory that grows into a shape the tree always knew as a seed

the words
the bread

the child who reaches for the truths beyond the door

the yearning to begin again together
animals keen inside the parliament of the world

the people in the room the people in the street the people

hold everything dear

19th May 2005
Gareth Evans

Saturday, 13 March 2010

No more fiddling around

I have some sad news to report this week. My good friend and band mate, Naomi Doran also know as Naomi De Kleined, will no longer be playing with the band. She has decided to call it a day with my rabble in order to dedicate all her spare time to her own art work, which has been causing quite a stir in recent months. She has been a delight to play alongside these last few years and her influence on me has been in no way slight. My sincere best wishes go out to her.

Wednesday, 3 March 2010

Secret Cinema: Wings of Desire

The weekend just past, the band and I were booked for Secret Cinema. As the name suggests, it was supposed to be all very hush hush regarding the details of the event. Now it’s all over I can reveal what actually happened.

Secret Cinema puts on classic films in unconventional venues, then themes the night around the film. The audience does not know what the film is until they arrive at the venue. The film that was screened last weekend was Wings of Desire, directed by Wim Wenders, set in Berlin in 1987, it follows a couple of angels that watch over some troubled characters. It’s all rather dreamy, and not a lot happens, but it’s a very beautiful film to watch.

Live at the Metropole

The venue was a disused theatre on Shepherds Bush Green, right beside the Shepherd’s Bush Empire. Inside the main hall where the film was being screened, there were some circus acts and a trapeze artist, which fitted in well with the contents of the film. They also had Fyfe Dangerfield playing a few deliciously romantic numbers before the film began, swamped in natural reverb and backed by a viola and fiddle player, “faster than a setting sun…”, the soundtrack to the weekend, I melt in recollection.

Outside of the main hall, Secret Cinema created a small Berlin night club called the Metropole, with a few rooms mocked up in 1980s German decor. I was to host this area, as the owner of the club, play with my house band, and introduce a few other acts. The other main act was This Is Laura, which were possibly the most appropriate act to put on, other than Nick Cave himself.

Well with 4 screenings, that meant music either side, making it a very intense 48 hours. Matinees and evening shows on Saturday and Sunday. The crowd would walk past us to get to the main theatre, or leave the venue. Thankfully, many would stay for a drink and watch and listen to me spitting about throbbing tumours and the like, and by the end of it they were screaming and hollering and dancing and leaping around.

Certainly a weekend to remember, plenty of camaraderie between my own band and This Is Laura. I now feel very toned, like a musical equivalent of Dolph Lundgren.

There will be plenty of post promotion of this event, which I’ll post up as I receive the links to it. Though you can see a slideshow of the event here to get an idea.