Sometimes I need to be loud. I don?t mean jamming your stereo at home or your ipod as you ride the tube. I mean loud. 150 decibels of raw audio. Not the recording of the act but the act itself. What is it about the desire to create tremendous amounts of brutal sonic fabric that draws certain people like a moth to flame?
There is a sense of power, of magical energy, that surrounds the act of creating amplified sounds. The volume knob has unlimited capabilities at creating a dense wall of distinct form and content – like a sonic tornado thats focal point is the performer. Those in the near field of the live creation of loudness can experience an ‘almost similar’ experience to that of the performer. But the performer’s neural system is in the feedback loop of listen and respond. Any movement is amplified, all sound is equal.
There is no wonder that most of the practitioners of magick (in whatever form) I know are musicians. Some of them professionals that make a living at it, others who pursue music making as a hobby after work. But many many magickians make music and though they do not realize or know it all musicians practice magick. Making music is making magick occur.
But back to loud. Why so damn loud? I feel inhabited, possessed, when I am creating live sounds at very high volumes. It is as if the enveloping wall of sound is an extension of my form, a morphing analog field of energy that is projected by my movements in whatever direction I face the speakers.
I have been to some very loud shows. Slayer at Blondies in Hamtramck, The Jesus and Marychain, Ministry in Detroit, Melvins with Jucifer opening (both amazingly loud), Wolfeyes in dozens of places, more recently My Bloody Valentine at the Roundhouse. The hands-down loudest most intense show I ever saw was Lightning Bolt play Grandmas House in Oakland, where Randy Lee lived and I was staying at the start of a tour. That show wasnt even real. I dreamt it and still everyone I was with got two years taken off their hearing.
[The best places to be loud are at venues and recording studios. Both are in acceptance of the religion of loud. One of them deals it to you, the other exploits you when you are on it.]
So tonight I will be loud for the first time in months. It will be good to stretch out.