“The list could surely go on, and there is nothing more wonderful than a list, instrument of wondrous hypotyposis.” • Umberto Eco, The Name of the Rose
On daily to-do list: add ‘hypotyposis’ [vivid picturesque description] to long vocabulary list.
I started following Top 40 lists on pop radio stations when I was 8. Some are fascinated by the patterns we see in the stars, some in why autumn leaves turn brown, why love affairs go sour, why males are driven crazy by women’s breasts and why some bet on football games or collect Barbies in their original packaging, I was interested in the order of pop music.
I kept my own lists, ear flush to my red transistor, listening to ABC-AM or the WMCA “Good Guys” waiting for the announcement of the next song, scribbling it down in it’s position in the Top 40 on a lined page with a flashlight propped up on my pillow. I stole 9v batteries from the Acme Super Market to keep the radio going late into the night as if turning it off might mean missing a secret message from the ether about my place in the universe or a mantra that will lead to a level of nirvana accorded only the nerdy among us.
Urban Graffiti Mix #18 by Mark Mccawley on Mixcloud
Rare tracks. New tracks. Transgressive tracks. Poetry, fiction, monologues, spoken word, and music tracks. Tracks from decades past. Tracks from emerging and established bands, poets, and writers. With Urban Graffiti Mix #18, UG continues its ongoing quest to compile and archive transgressive material too often overlooked by mainstream media, all the while celebrating the independent DIY spirit of avant-garde artists and autodidacts internationally. Read more
in conversation with Mark McCawley
From left to right: Sam Ospovat – Drums; Kevin Thomson – Guitar; Pete Simonelli – Words/Vocals; Joe Goldring – Guitar. Photo Copyright © Lenny Gonzalez
That one finds the urge to twist and fugue to this music and Simonelli’s dark urbane tales is due to the collective gestalt and unique zeitgeist of this band which relishes pushing musical and lyrical boundaries of form and content and presenting them in an eclectic and exciting manner.
• Mark McCawley
Listen now as you read
“A silent man, walking in solitude by a mountain stream… We begin to see what is real and what really deserves our allegiance.” • Gary Snyder
The first disc I’d bring along to a deserted island is this one – along with The Gentle Side of John Coltrane and Ascenseur pour l’échafaud by Miles Davis. Never mind that I only have Shout on a poor-quality cassette. In 1999, I was asked to participate in an art exhibit entitled “Small Objects That Changed Your Life” in De Appel Arts Centre in Amsterdam. I placed this tape with the below self-made cover – a small detail clipped from a Bruegel painting in a magazine + a dried Paris leaf – into the exhibit with a short explanation. That I never hesitate to mention it when this question comes up is impressive since I have listened to literally thousands of songs and albums and whenever someone asks for a Top 10 of anything, I usually come up with a Top 25 + a mea culpa. There are so many deserving records, so many under-listened-to artists. And yet…