soundclash: nietzsche vs. buddha

30 July 2005

Many of the innovations in music for the past several decades happen in the more agressive, energetically active forms. Metal, punk, hip-hop, techno, jungle (hardcore), dancehall/bashment, grime. Nietzsche would be proud: the strong succeed, leading the way. The Appollonians may complain, back in their chill out rooms or up in their pop charts, but they follow the leader. Further down the line they sweeten the style up once its cooled off.

War presidents think this way too. Apollonian nations fall behind. The people don't want to fight wars, but it invigorates the folk and the economy. In South Park terms its Dicks and Pussies.

I like breakcore, and noise and really crunchy tracks. Lots of my friends are in the current scene; everybody is really quite sweet. Jason Forrest née Donna Summer, Society Suckers, Aaron Spectre, Dormouse. (Sorry, but you guys are all pussies though you pretend that you are assholes) The music isn't an expression of their fucked up lives, its more of a grasp for that vital energy. If you had a really fucked up life, you wouldn't need to make *core. Rupture and Criterion flavor their stuff or associate (DJing / distribution) with breakcore for that vital spice without their own music actually being breakcore.

I've tried to make breakcore, and rarely succeed. I'm not really aggressive; or I don't remain single minded enough or I slip in other wrong elements. Recently I'm finding all my (mildly) aggressive music fails, but when I release the over-focusing (the will to succeed) and let the sound flow, it succeeds. By succeed I mean that I like it, other people like it, it gets listened to more. Maybe its the better position to be in. Ego and the Will to Power may lead, but maybe I'm actually using THEM to do the dirty work. Let the aggressive people in dancehall etc. define the form. I just want some area to work in. If I innovate, off in the fringes, it doesn't connect other than as a "misc" record.

Innovation ? That's always been so important to me, but the outer-casing of music styles is distracting. Its the vessel, the delivery system. Its just some costume to put on while we do a play that really communicates on another level. Its the egotism of "I came up with something" and its what journalists pay attention to (the surface) because they can't talk about the internals of music. That is when journalists aren't blabbing on about how amazingly significant the geographic-location/gender/orientation/attached-political-reference is.

I made music that had no genre, or avoided genres. Some people like that; people like me search for stuff that isn't always treading the main arteries. But, we have to admit that the main artieries exist, and you interact with them both by treading or avoiding them. Genres aren't about innovation so much as about the coalescence of innovation; its structure; the dough sticking together. Neither water nor flour will make good bread; you need both -- and don't forget to bake it.

But is it important ? No. Is progress important ? Its getting less important as things speed up. Soon progress will bundle past us, leaving us dumb-ass humans to wonder what just happened. Its an un-winnable asymptote. Its fascinating and nerve racking. Most of the music buying public stopped caring about progress a long long time ago. Why have I always been obsessed with the future and how things change ? It takes away from the now.

I always declared myself Dionysian, and now I vaguely worry that I'm getting like old, self-secure and Appollonian. The danger of an overly ordered life is introversion. Being at peace dissconnects you. But in fact, this is only a stage until you learn to engage creatively with the world and still remain unattached.

Nietzsche disses the Buddha for being Appollonian. Damn peaceniks never accomplish anything. The Buddha disses him back because Nietzsche only understands the possibility of opposing these qualities. From the viewpoint of a Buddha its petty squabling between Gods—and crappy greek copies of hindu ones at that. Overly tranquil (tamasic) is an error, overly agitated (rajasic) is an error. Sattva is the ideal balance (as in Sativae). You strive to be neither active nor passive. Like Jet Li poised in peace but ready to kick your ass at any second.

Inspired by:
The Kubrick Site: '2001' & The Philosophy of Nietzsche

wherein he notes that the ape becomes man by killing and the development of tools

and then here:

Kubrick 2001

nearly dies at the hand of his tool (Hal). "You nearly got replaced by your tool, replaced by your container, by the extension of your own body." (paraphrased)

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