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February 8, 2012 @ 12:00 amGet Tickets - »
Thurston Moore first saw Beck way back in the early 90s when Beck was mowing lawns with an amplified hand-push ill-blade mower at a backyard BBQ on Toul Avenue in Westwood L.A., a coconut’s throw from the 405 freeway. Beck only sang a couple of songs, both about TV destruction and toxic inhalants, before he lifted a German Shepherd over his head and threw it into the crowd. I was from NYC and had never seen a real live canine fly before but I caught the beast and he licked my forehead and whispered into my ear, “Beck’s a good dude, wait until he grows into the #1 sweater anti-surf rider of Malibu and let him read your mind.” Cut to the late summer of 2010 and sitting with Beck on his back porch where I’m slowly eating a pack of basted tobacco Darks n’ Blues with honey-raw crèmes and Beck looks up from the pools of silver-jello burbling around his open-toed snoopz and exclaims, “yes. Thurston. i. will. Produce. Yr. record.” So I fly out with a paper lunchbag of tunes all written over a 2 year period of time moving between a movie screen displaying the tone-poem cinema of Robert Bresson and a cathode ray emitting the sex-diary investigations of Catherine Breillat. On day one I played the first song sitting in front of a Beck-wired microphone, its design informed by the cut of Joseph Beuys’ cerebellum. The jam is called “Benediction”, where the camera records the adult girl reading a love letter written on the back blank pages of her hymnal where he knew only she could find it. On day two I played the second song, “Illuminine”, in a field alive with sheep, bells tinkling to the sky from their necks, surrounding me as I sang into a specially-prepared dirt-mic, where the resonance becomes richer the more prone the performer’s body is to the earth. Lyrics of salvation through lonesome meditation of nature and its reflection of animal magnetism. Surrendering to spirit desire. On day three I played the third song, “Circulation”, while sitting in the middle seat in the front of a 1978 AMC Pacer with Sparks’ Russell Mael driving, Ron Mael with his window closed (it was 103 degrees out) constantly fiddling with the side-view mirror. Beck was in the back holding a shotgun mic and recording the basic track, already pre-recorded, as it played through the Pacer’s sick system, while I sang live the lyrics, trying to focus on the lust-rust blood scent of a city girl on a holy other coast On day four I played the fourth song “Blood Never Lies”, while hitchhiking to Venice Beach on the PCH. I set out 30 minutes early to get a “head” start before Beck came whizzing by in a rented British six-cylinder Triumph TR6, one hand on the wheel, the other whipping a whip-mic over his head and every time it came close to my mouth I would sing the lyrics that came to me as my thumb beckoned psychedelic housewives to consider taking me into town.