Saturday, April 11, 2009


maintained at a constant frequency, galvanized, provoked,
squeezed, machinery is tired.

When quality replaces quantity, that is, when tunes are
overshadowed by promotional distractions, when inundation
becomes saturation then we'd expect some sort of revolt. If it were
simple, then a song sung from the heart would mean something
somewhere, it would mean something over and above the interests
of the breadheads, but what is singed away in public view by the
band is clawed back under the table by the accountants. Sadly it
seems that the truth of pop has nothing to do with either lyrical
good intentions of stylistic heresies; its truth is economic and
structural, and was realized in the destruction of autonomous
popular culture (pigeon fancying, spam for Sunday tea, model
making, wearing hats and dressing like your parents), replacing it
with mass culture organized according to the commodity form.
Even so, the value of pop music has declined, and it would seem
appropriate if, when confronted with the fare of this naked lunch.
consumers spat it out and rose up like lions out of the slumber and
demanded better pop. If the explicit call to pop revolution was co-
companies, then why not, when confronted with the utter banality
of pop's current content, rise up against it? But the fans are not
consumers, they have made no decisions - they merely follow, as
a vaguely defined workforce, the dictates of economic forces which
barely appear in the register of their understanding; the decline in
product quality has been accompanied with a similar slippage in
the subjective consciousness of the object, which means pop-
product can now be finished under-tens (fashionably called
tweenagers) whilst their parents, just taller children, recondition old
material via subjective nostalgia (we saw a display recently in a
bookshop consisting of books of photographs entitled Paris in the
Sixties, New York in the Sixties, London in the Sixties.
That digital
technology is primarily about the storage and retrieval of
information is a dull but accurate peg, but next year greater
magnification will accelerate the book, The Latin Quarter in the
and the following year and zooming in still closer, Le Cafe
de Sartre in the Sixties
- mass cultural production is a satellite
photograph, it aims to focus on a lit cigarette from a thousand
miles up. Information technology is a mining operation, a juicing
machine, it is deployed to squeeze out the last drop; recycling is
the systematization of the mudlark and because our moment is

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