The Null Device
Posts matching tags 'cocteau twins'
The Guardian has a rare interview with Elizabeth Fraser, the singer from the Cocteau Twins, in which she talks about the breakup of her relationship with Robin Guthrie and the disintegration of the band, her subsequent relationship with Massive Attack's Damon Reece, and her gradual return to music:
She and Guthrie were lovers for 13 years, during which time the difficulties any relationship faces were compounded by being in a band together. "We were so close, but certain responsibilities were too much for us," Fraser says. The birth of their daughter Lucy-Belle in 1989 "didn't impact as positively" as she'd hoped.
There were resentments on both sides, she says. They were "outgrowing each other" and Fraser was increasingly unhappy in the band. She resented "doing what people wanted all the time" and began to break free, a process documented on the unusually direct lyrics of the 1993 album Four-Calendar Cafe. The situation was sharpened by Guthrie's dependency on alcohol and drugs, revelations (which came from him, after the band's split) that shocked fans. But Fraser's own unhappiness was unnoticed by her colleagues.
Reece understands that the process of putting her back together as a singer is an ongoing process. "I feel sorry for the general public because I hear her singing in the house and it's truly amazing," he says. "But she's absolutely genuine in every way possible. Which can be very frustrating, but is an amazing attribute to have. I've worked with many singers, and a lot of them are fake. The world is a sadder place without Elizabeth singing."
Much has been said about the legacy of David Lynch's Twin Peaks; now WIRED has a piece on the series' musical legacy, specifically on the shoegazer genre:
The series made a major impact, admitted Swervedriver front man Adam Franklin recently to me during an interview on the reunion of bands from the late '80s and early '90s, including those who have yet to announce a comeback. "Everyone was watching that show," Franklin says. "Angelo Badalamenti had a huge influence on the shoegaze sound."
Meanwhile, Cocteau Twins' architect Robin Guthrie and ambient composer Harold Budd's score for the underrated 2004 film Mysterious Skin sounds like it came right out of the Twin Peaks playbook. But the feedback loop isn't that simple: The Cocteau Twins collaborated much earlier with Budd on the 1986 classic The Moon and the Melodies, whose haunting, majestic track "She Will Destroy You" sounds like it was specifically built for Laura Palmer. And it's well-known that Lynch was a dedicated fan of the Twins before Twin Peaks existed. He made it official when he inserted This Mortal Coil's chilling "Song to the Siren," ethereally delivered by Cocteau Twins vocalist Elizabeth Fraser, into his 1997 film Lost Highway.
And on: L.A.-based Hypnagogia Films is working on a documentary about the shoegaze sound, called Beautiful Noise, and has conducted scores of interviews with My Bloody Valentine, Cocteau Twins and many more bands from the either side of that splendid period. Hypnagogia principals Eric Green and Sarah Ogletree recently told me in an interview that they are hard at work chasing down Lynch for a chat, one that may put the puzzle of the period together for them at last.
Robin Guthrie, the guitar-pedal wizard from the Cocteau Twins and pioneer of all things swirly and æthereal, has now had a hand at filmmaking. You may not be surprised to find that his first film appears to be the visual equivalent of his music:
It has been exhaustively assembled with the same craft which Robin has used in the sonic world for years, an interweaving and layering of images, creating distinct moods which are reflected by the music being played - "improvised within the framework; dictated by the visuals", relying on layers of treated guitars, textures and sumptuously cyclic melodies"From what I hear, Lumière is basically swirling, dissolving blurs of coloured light. And it comes with Guthrie playing a live soundtrack on guitar.
31/12; 7 hours remaining (cont.):
Favourite CDs of 2000:
- Cocteau Twins - Stars and Topsoil
- A collection of some of the Cocteau Twins' best material from 1982 to 1990. Has some great songs, like Aikea-Guinea and Heaven or Las Vegas
- Radiohead - Kid A
- Yes, it was over-hyped; the press wouldn't shut up about it and your local Sanity/HMV had stacks of it. And yes, others said it was a load of wank. But once you get past that, you have an interesting album. Some have compared it to The Cure's Pornography, perhaps fairly, only with more of a Warp influence and some odd time signatures. Favourite track: probably How To Disappear Completely.
- Minimum Chips - Freckles
- An EP from a local act, in a sort of Stereolabish vein; hope they do a full album soon.
- Baxendale - You Will Have Your Revenge
- Electronic pop (though not synthpop) with tongue firmly in cheek. Some of the songs get boring after a while, but I Love the Sound of Dance Music is a classic.
- Stone Roses - The Remixes
- Some great reworkings of the Stone Roses, ranging from Rabbit in the Moon's acid-rave remix of I Wanna Be Adored (which sounds as if they could have done most of it with ReBirth) to Kinobe's mellow reworking of Elizabeth My Dear.
- FourPlay String Quartet, The Joy Of
- Their second album, with some great tracks, including a dub/klezmer two-part and a vicious-sounding PWEI remake. Their remix CD, slated for early 2001, will be something to look out for.
- Piano Magic, Artists' Rifles
- Arty and understated and hard to describe, though something I've been listening to a lot.
With honourable mentions going to Broadcast, Extended Play Two, Björk, SelmaSongs, Beulah, When Your Heartstrings Break, Deepchild, Hymns from Babylon, LTJ Bukem, Journey Inwards, Yo La Tengo, And Then Nothing Turned Itself Inside Out and Black Box Recorder's various EPs (mostly for the B-sides), (Note: this is counting only CDs I acquired this year.)