Thursday, December 07, 2006

Lilys Interview: Part One

The first I’d heard of Lilys, a pop group from Philadelphia, was their ‘Everything Wrong is Imaginary’ CD released earlier in the year. To my surprise it was their seventh! Gosh, I thought, if their back catalog was half as good as this, and I had a sneaky feeling it probably was, then I am falling over and laughing because ‘Everything Wrong…’ has sweetly slayed me for daze.

I was fortunate to interview their enigmatic frontman Kurt Heasley for a Melbourne weekly recently. My assignment was a piece considerably shorter than the 2,500 words I ended up with. Kurt rambled on for ages, totally off-topic, which is a rare thrill if you can find it. What Kurt was saying really tickled me and it compelled me to continue transcribing. The process was an arduous one and I often felt like I was typing out the manuscript to ‘Gravity’s Rainbow’ – searing insight amidst profound tidal waves of nonsense sweeping over me.

Kurt is tall (6’6”), psychedelic, loquacious and something of a mystical shamanistic dude. The pantleg part of his trousers has more talent than that jackass from Brian Jonestown Massacre’s entire body (and to think they made a movie about that guy). Kurt’s unyielding brain activity and blitzkrieg verbiage belies his spare pop songs, and in conversation his dogma is delivered in a hilariously grandstanding oratorical style that recalls Gore Vidal at his most didactic and highfalutin. There is no order, no pause in a Kurt Heasley interview, just a cursory mention of lunch and suddenly we’re cast-off into the otherworldly world of Kurt Heasley. This is the first of, I don't know, ten or so parts.

“So what are you going to have for lunch today?” he asks. I was thinking of picking up some Japanese. “A sushi roll?” Yeah, would you approve of that? “I would.” What are you going to have? “Well it’s 11.18pm and I’ve already had two or three different dinners and the uh, no, well...you know someone just asked me if there was someone downstairs and I’m like no, that would imply that the door is unlocked and there is way of getting in a locked door unless they smash a four and a half foot piece of glass, eighteen inches wide and you would hear that, you would hear that, probably long before you would hear anyone foot-stepping around so...you know I was having a dialogue with a former lawyer, also Australian. We were talking about guilt through omission, misinformation versus disinformation. I think it is implied that misinformation could say I was incorrectly informed or I read the briefing wrong. Disinformation means there are three blue dots in the line and four red dots and saying there are two blue dots and one red dot...

"So I asked him because we are coming up on our senate and congressional election. Very important. I’m not particularly of the democratic or republican view but more of ‘where are our voices of reason?' We have all these wonderfully eloquent extremists that can give hellhouse scenarios and really get people excited about the worst possible change of events, and fear mongering is valid, it worked for the Third Reich, several political machines have used it to fantastic success. We have a government and a media that is completely at ends with each other and this is why it’s very, very… but if one thing ties them all in together, they were born into a ruling family elite. I am talking about the exclusive. And I’m not saying that new money and new blood and new ideas are not coming out, they are coming out, people are rising to the top, new philanthropy is out there, people, you can’t really stop someone from finding it out but you don’t have to tell them where it all is."

to be continued...

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