File spoon-archives/postanarchism.archive/postanarchism_2003/postanarchism.0307, message 71


Date: Sun, 27 Jul 2003 17:05:27 -0700 (PDT)
Subject: [postanarchism] Constellation Records / Godspeed: Fuck Post-Rock!


I just wanted to compliment that last essay with this
short statement from Montreal's Constellation Records
which rejects the term "post-rock" as coined by Simon
Reynolds, who is also the author of the "Mille
Plateux" essay I posted...some of these folks are in
the anarchist music collective Godspeed You! Black
Emperor which is has a rather rhizomatic style as
well. 

***

Constellation began releasing experimental rock music
in Montreal in 1997, seeking to enact a mode of
cultural production that critiques the worst
tendencies of the music industry, artistic
commodification, and perhaps in some tiny way, the
world at large. We have attempted to evolve one
possible model for the recovery of an independent
music ethic, hoping to summon some real sense of indie
rock in spite of its reduction to a branded slogan
through corporate co-optation, its laissez-faire
attitude towards the market and the means of
production, and all the facile irony that helps pave
the path for these content-negating trends. Together
with the musicians who release records on the label,
we have worked to rekindle a critical rock music
cognisant of geography and social conditions; to
reflect these concerns both musically and practically
by building self-sufficient local structures for
performing, recording and releasing work; to hold fast
to the beautiful promise of independent rock as a
perpetually nascent musical form capable of uncertain,
unstable, unassimilable, untarnished transmissions.
This is our 'post-rock' -- a term that must be
construed politically in equal measure to its
referencing of some diffuse 'instrumental' or
'deconstructed' musical aesthetic. 'Indie rock' was
never a genre and its bastardisation as an aesthetic
category was one of countless elegant
corporate-intellectual coups during the 1990s. Sadly,
all too many hipper-than-now taste-makers were happily
complicit, ready to replace 'indie' with 'post' and
thus help extinguish any abiding concern about the
economies that ground and contextualise rock music. So
fuck post-rock, and the smooth untroubled consumption
it enables. Independent rock as a utopic analogue for
social organisation is our mandate. The world has not
changed. Evil cowards rule the world and terror
prevails on all sides. We go on mucking about with
instruments and cardboard and test pressings and
distribution deals in ways that we hope will avoid or
at least minimise corruption of the work, all the
while knowing our freedom to do so is soaked in the
blood of innocents. Music means very very little in
all of this, but if it can somehow speak to THIS, we
humanise ourselves a little along the way. 

===="The world is the natural setting of and field for all my thoughts and all my explicit perceptions. Truth does not 'inhabit' only 'the inner man' or more accurately, there is no inner man, man is in the world and only in the world does he know himself."

 Merleau-Ponty, Phenomenology of Perception, 1945

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