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Categorically Unavailable, Bejar

Pitchfork's Destroyer interview today taps plenty of nails, even if it's faith that'll hold the house together in the end. (Funny, then, that Bejar characterizes Neutral Milk Hotel's In the Aeroplane has having "a mystic element and a sustained tone of catharsis"--something I'd ascribe to Bejar's own stuff [right down to the Cantorial vocal vibes of Rubies] even if that catharsis would require some modding/light redefinition.)

Anyway, the best part of the conversation has to be

Pitchfork: Why do you think more musicians don't write about being musicians? Recently, self-reflexive rock music seems to be all the rage, but it seems fairly logical that musicians would be interested in talking about making music.

DB: Most musicians don't write about being a musician cause most musicians aren't writers. I also don't think that it is a worthy subject in and of itself. Really good musicians don't think of "self-reflection" in those terms. I can't really comment on all that, since I'm not really a musician.

Anyway, the staying power of these themes seems unproven. They seem like a good springboard to other concerns, at best.

So, writers are not the same as musicians (in fact, they're exclusive). Just like Eno said he wasn't a musician or Warhol messed with what it meant to be an artist.

And like Warhol, Bejar worms his way out of the question entirely by basically saying that he's not only a bad musician, but he's no musician at all, making any answer he might give on the question of reflexivity in music totally pointless.

All of that could be relatively expected from Bejar, but the last line -- "They seem like a springboard to other concerns, at best" -- is getting me right now.

Bejar unknowingly jumps in on the critique will eat itself pile, but, like his fan Carl, he knows that this stuff isn't an end in and of itself, but damned if he's going to say -- or whether he even knows -- where all of it could go.


Blogger blackmail is my life said...

I think it's amazing that one day he condemns musical collectives and the next he forms a new one. That said, I'd like to believe in Swan Lake, but truth be told, I'm not much for Wolf Parade, so I prefer the idea of Swan Lake.

7:26 AM  
Blogger Mike Powell said...

I think that I'm an idealist in the most literal sense, so I'll agree with you. Furthermore, I think Bejar's intrinsically a loner and I confess that I've never even heard Wolf Parade. So.

10:04 AM  

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