It's the last day of the year again, very early in the morning, and though it has been a busy month with concert- and DJ-performances in Copenhagen and at our own goth club here in Odense, I don't feel particularly tired at the moment. I suppose this is the time of year for looking back, for silently contemplating the time that was and, for the slightly more adventurous - or neurotic - spirits all over the globe, to think of times to come.
On a musical level I guess I spent more time focusing on concerts and DJ-appearances this year rather than producing new music, and I was of course happy and flattered to realise my concert at this year's Nakkefestival was the largest in that festival's history so far. However, I did also do a few new tracks, one of them, Ruth, a sarcastic song about the ghastly Christian fanatic, Ruth Evensen, who, earlier this year, had alternative music venue Ungdomshuset in Copenhagen torn down, received substantial airplay on student and underground radios around the country. I also received interest from an American label that wants to release my Digital Age album, and mastering on all the songs is just about ready, so I think it's fair to say the album will finally be released next year.
Enough about me - go and shoot off those rockets, blow a few fingers, pick some fights. And should you lose an eye, one way or the other, don't worry too much because you can always lose the other one in a year.
Legendary German avantgarde composer Karlheinz Stockhausen died a few days ago, 79 years old. He pioneered electronic music as early as the 1950s, working within serial, aleatoric, and microtonal strategies. There are those who would say he invented techno.
I met Stockhausen, at a toilet, back in 1996 when I attended a concert of his in Copenhagen. He was an elderly man in white suit and I looked like something out of Blade Runner, long trenchcoat and mohawk. As we talked and he told me about his wild, crazy ideas about music and space we were walking down a staircase and with each step, as his wonderful ramblings grew wilder and wilder, literally sending music into deep space, I had the sensation of him growing younger.
For my concert in Copenhagen two days ago I decided to open with a brief Stockhausen-inspired impro, slightly confusing the dark-clad goth-crowd who, nonetheless, applauded the strange sounds. Surrounded by synthesizers and music machines, it only seemed right to honour the resigned pioneer.
Something IS rotten in the state of Denmark, indeed. It's been about a month since Ungdomshuset, alternative culture and music venue in Copenhagen, was stormed by the police to make way for a fanatical Christian sect, Faderhuset, that only wanted to tear down the place which they eventually did. And we're talking the kind of Christian sect that preaches against homosexuality, against Darwin, against Muslims, you get the picture. I was supposed to give a concert in Ungdomshuset March 02 but the place was stormed by the police just one day earlier, so I went to Copenhagen instead to take part in the demonstrations and riots that followed, turning N�rrebro, inner Copenhagen, into what the media dramatically described as a warzone. Cars were on fire, stones flying through the air, angry police and demonstrants roaming the streets. Clearly the situation was out of control.
I went to Copenhagen to take part in the demonstrations and riots, not to throw stones at the police or burn people's cars, though I must admit I do understand the anger behind such actions. The right to use the venue had originally been given to the users back in 1982, as a gift, and now this gift had been sold behind their back, without their consent. In the days and nights that followed several hundred people were arrested, some violently, a good number were innocent, and a couple of houses were searched by the police without the proper legal backing.
A few days later I was contacted by national TV who'd heard my song Ruth, named after the ghastly woman who leads the sect Faderhuset. I was featured in a documentary about the riots and several people have since asked me why I don't have the program somewhere on my website. The answer is simple - copyrights. I appeared in the documentary but TV2 have the rights, so if I were to bring the program on my site, without their written consent, it would be a violation of their rights. However, I think the documentary can be found as pay-per-view somewhere on one of the TV2 websites for those who are really curious.
The underground is not dead, though. There have been demonstrations all over Denmark, happenings are still going on, and I know about at least two underground releases that have expressed interest in my Ruth song - hopefully something will happen. Until then, dye your hair and your mind some silly colour, get out there and make a change.
Copyright: Ras Bolding 2007