Click here for more information on this title:  Musics: A British Magazine of Improvised Music & Art 1975-79  edited by Steve Beresford, David Toop, et al., Afterword by Thurston Moore

 

Thurston on MUSICS

“…. In one of many interviews with free improvisation saxophonist Evan Parker he talked about his own desire to investigate the slight sounds that a jazz player would emit before entering a composition’s primary statement. Beyond any learned technique, whether self-taught or academic, there is a living and shared aesthetic of decision making, coding/decoding and concept of process. That process is the consideration of real time composition through the action of improvisation. ‘Composing on the tongue’ is how the poet Allen Ginsberg would reference his own free ‘first thought, best thought’ Buddhist-centric lines on paper. Evan Parker was one of the gentlemen responsible for suggesting to messengers Steve Beresford, Peter Cusack and David Toop the need for a magazine to exist where discussion could be had in regards to a music so elusive in contemporary journalism. With most devotees and practitioners barely living above a poverty existence it could only be a labour of love. Mr. Toop points to the publishing model of underground poetry by the late, great Bob Cobbing and his Writers Forum press. Cobbing published extensively and prodigiously. If a young poet had a ready manuscript it could, and would, be printed within a day and be ready for distribution to willing bookstores within a week’s time. The nexus of London bookstores dealing in underground missives in the 1970s and ’80s was Compendium Books in Camden Town. This is where one could find MUSICS. Like a great deal of literature in Compendium, MUSICS took on the role of attempting to describe and delineate art and music in direct action with the dialectics of freedom and liberation in the face of ensuing commercialisation and ambition towards wealth. All of which has since swept across Camden Town eradicating such luminous outposts as Compendium. MUSICS ran its course by natural growth and the collective expanded in varying, personal motivations. Punk rock comes kicking and screaming through the rubble and new beats, new rhythms, new wild waves dance along the lineage of experimental, visionary creativity. As we enter into a third decade of the 2000s and witness the fascination of young artists curious to the nature of what is always the avant-garde, both timeless and quaint, futuristic and antique, proper and perverse it is the documents that teach, enchant, intrigue, encourage and ultimately FREE the imagination. And so we present from the archives of the arcane every word inked by the writers, players and devotees of MUSICS where the ideas in their fire and foment engage the mind, heart and soul in perpetuity and all the while sharing the undying value of the collective: love. ”

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