The word may once have been a healthy neural cell. It is now a parasitic organism that invades and damages the central nervous system. Modern man has lost the option of silence. Try halting your sub-vocal speech. Try to achieve even ten seconds of inner silence. You will encounter a resisting organism that forces you to talk.
That organism is the word.
William S. Burroughs, The Ticket That Exploded (1967)
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- Jay Allison ‘The Neighborhood Freaks’ (4:52)
- Adam Cornford and Daniel Crafts ‘Fundamentals: Musical Preachers’ (Excerpt) (2:07)
- Greg Whitehead ‘If a Voice Like Then What?’ (2:45)
- Susan Stone ‘Langue Etude’ (1:58)
- The New York IPS (Jay Allison, Janice Bail, Katie Davis, Karen Frillmann, Portia Franklin, Lou Giansante, Charlie Gilbert, Alan Gingold, Karen Pearlman, Marjorie Van Halteren) ‘New York City: 24 Hours in Public Places’ (Excerpt) (2:40)
- M’Iou Zahner Ollswang ‘Mosquitos’ (1:30)
- Ginna Allison ‘La Llorona’ (5:35)
- Marjorie Van Halteren ‘Dead of Summer’ Produced by Marjorie Van Halteren and Lou Giansante. Read by Russell Horion (2:03)
- Lou Giansante ‘Balloon Man’ Written by e.e. cummings (1:30)
- Karen Michel McPherson ‘Postcard from Marna Springs’ (1.28)
- Barrett Golding ‘Cityphony’ (2:00)
- Rick Harris ‘Is This Real’ (Excerpt) (3:42)
- Janice Bail and Portla Franklin ‘Crime of Silence: The Sexual Abuse of Children’ (3:39)
- Melanie Berzon ‘And they never corne back… life after our parents have died’ (Excerpt) (2:08)
- Edward Haber ‘Citizen Kafka – Abbott and Costello Meet the Anti-Christ’ (2:53)
- Steve Jones ‘House of Dogs’ (Excerpt) (2:14)
- Helen Thorington ‘Stella Nova’ (Excerp) (4:30)
- Ginger Miles ‘The Day That Buddy Holly Died: A Portrait of the Fifties’ (Excerpt) (5:20)
- Karen Frillmann ‘The Long Journey of Poppie Non Gena’ (Excerpt) (5:22)
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A gathering of independant producers for public radios, this cassette release attest US radio art’s creativity ca. 1985, presenting extracts from radioplays by professionnal actors (Steve Jones, Helen Thorington) along contemporary art’s stake on the style by the likes of sound poet Susan Stone or Gregory Whitehead. The former (pictured with daughter Caroline) launched Radio Schizophonia with Whitehead, 1979. ‘The Sound of Radio’ sounds like an ode to the good old disc-jockey turned storyteller. Stand out tracks for me are Susan Stone’s lecture on cutting complete with disgusting surgery noises; the well known medical sound poetry of Greg Withehead; the excellent interviews on mosquitos collated by MZ Oliswang; the all too short illbient track ‘Cityphony’ by Barrett Golding; Steve Jones’ funny rendition of Antonin Arthaud ‘Le Cenci’ is quite deranged; the cassette ends with a griot story about african wedding customs, putting the radio network in perspective with black oral/ancestral culture: it’s Karen Frillmann’s Long Journey of Poppie Non Gena, a lively and engaging story.
By the way: excellent sound quality, just so you know. One final note: is it me, or do I ”hear” the shadow of Tony Schwartz over this cassette?