Red Rose for the Sinking Ship

by Jeff Gburek Projects

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about

"Red Rose for the Sinking Ship", released originally by Triple Bath in 2007, and still available on demand, but in some sense out-of-print, re-issued here to coincide with the label's retrospective podcast 5.31.14 @ cafebar.radiobubble.gr

More about the album, review links etc. @
www.futurevessel.com/orphansound/projects/rose/

This is a remastered version and does differ slightly from the original CD.

My reflections about the work appear in the podcast along
with some excerpts.

Full text:

listening now in May of 2014... almost 7 years later,
in this very strange moment in Europe,

the crisis in Ukraine, the spectres of Socialist Revolution, Fascism,
listening now
to the now then
and the now before...

it was released on the Greek label, Triple Bath,
before the economic crisis hit,
when they felt all good and well

red rose for the sinking ship

it's a densely imbricated and delicate imbroglio, the sound, I mean.
and it's stacked with memory and places woven through with time

it's woven around the details of daily life and then I was in Berlin
I'd found these very fascinating Maoist propaganda prints
from the 50's at the flea-market on the Bergmanstrasse
and I had them up, on display in my flat
and my flat had been functioning like a gallery
so I would often find myself reflecting on the history
history within the pictures and the history of living in that border
between the old East and West,
of the city of Berlin, of Germany, of the Cold War World, of my own ideals,
how some city like Berlin embodied and crushed those ideals all at once into a pestle
and as the European Socialism slowly seemed to transform

the title came as a kind of dream-phrase
"red rose for the sinking ship"
the rose the flower
the rose the rows of people waiting for something
the rose of "row, row, row, your boat"
and it's was towards this sinking ship of Europe and socialism I was rowing
old Mao old Stalin old Lenin and Marx rippling in the waves of history
and now the present and the night that cannot be located in the middle of that ocean
masses and waves and people unknown living or dead tides of

whatever mortar and pestle, weaving into the sounds,
flashes of these images mused or wept over indifferently
repeatedly searched critically for sense mirages

they were titled originally 'thresholds'
just thresholds, and whatever rages or oozes through them

well it rose up gently enough, track 1, merging and melting until marching comes.
and the second track, threshold 2, erupts into zones of conflict
i find it a bit frightening now as then
strafing runs, sonic booms, terrible silences--- it seems like that to me still,
like I was able to color the silences with terror, silence that doesn't have any color --
suddenly between those roars the silence obtains a hue of horror

but why would you want to do that? I've asked myself
and so I ask Goya and all other painters of what's horrible why
in order to get my answer

by the end of threshold two we are moving into the ruins, into the rubble,
reprisals and hallucinatory trauma and then the elemental forces balancing, healing,
fizzle of water, cracklings of re-stabilizing, murmurs, soothing,
ever across shifting grounds, unstable but more gently unstable, organismic

deja vu and mnemic triggers however to reminiscence and resolve,
maybe even foolish new convictions,
multiple and contradictory surfaces meeting, sliding, co-existing

dull plodding of trains, announcements, wheeling of squeaky carriages, bustle

and then somewhere in there sounds played on the day of Derek Bailey's death

mixtures of too many things perhaps and yet such is life
a lot to chew on, so wan with ghost and beating with so many unknowable hearts
to pull through the thread of dense material what is ongoing and intangible

and the finale, a fragile coda, the fairy tale music box,
cranked uncertainly to defamiliarize the melody
then to play the familiar strains which should be stirring, rousing
only to find them infantile, sweet,
the infantile internationale, the lost ideal
heard on the night of a full moon

thank you, Themis, for asking, for letting it go out there
into the Triple Bath of the world

Jeff Gburek
Poznan, Poland
5.31.14

credits

released May 31, 2014

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about

Jeff Gburek Projects Poland

guitarist, composer, improvisor, sound artist, prepared guitar, unprepared guitars, stones, found objects, phonography, electronics, digital manipulation.studied Javanese and Balinese gamelan music, developed as a percussionist studied the theories of Partch and Xenakis while working in the dance/theater/butoh project Djalma Primordial Science.STEIM residency and Darmstadt summer. ... more

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Track Name: Red Rose for the Sinking Ship by Jeff Gburek. Introduction to the work for theTriple Bath Podcast, 5.31.14
text for the podcast:

listening now in May of 2014... almost 7 years later,
in this very strange moment in Europe,

the crisis in Ukraine, the spectres of Socialist Revolution, Fascism,
listening now
to the now then
and the now before...

it was released on the Greek label, Triple Bath,
before the economic crisis hit,
when they felt all good and well

red rose for the sinking ship

it's a densely imbricated and delicate imbroglio, the sound, I mean.
and it's stacked with memory and places woven through with time

it's woven around the details of daily life and then I was in Berlin
I'd found these very fascinating Maoist propaganda prints
from the 50's at the flea-market on the Bergmanstrasse
and I had them up, on display in my flat
and my flat had been functioning like a gallery
so I would often find myself reflecting on the history
history within the pictures and the history of living in that border
between the old East and West,
of the city of Berlin, of Germany, of the Cold War World, of my own ideals,
how some city like Berlin embodied and crushed those ideals all at once into a pestle
and as the European Socialism slowly seemed to transform

the title came as a kind of dream-phrase
"red rose for the sinking ship"
the rose the flower
the rose the rows of people waiting for something
the rose of "row, row, row, your boat"
and it's was towards this sinking ship of Europe and socialism I was rowing
old Mao old Stalin old Lenin and Marx rippling in the waves of history
and now the present and the night that cannot be located in the middle of that ocean
masses and waves and people unknown living or dead tides of

whatever mortar and pestle, weaving into the sounds,
flashes of these images mused or wept over indifferently
repeatedly searched critically for sense mirages

they were titled originally 'thresholds'
just thresholds, and whatever rages or oozes through them

well it rose up gently enough, track 1, merging and melting until marching comes.
and the second track, threshold 2, erupts into zones of conflict
i find it a bit frightening now as then
strafing runs, sonic booms, terrible silences--- it seems like that to me still,
like I was able to color the silences with terror, silence that doesn't have any color --
suddenly between those roars the silence obtains a hue of horror

but why would you want to do that? I've asked myself
and so I ask Goya and all other painters of what's horrible why
in order to get my answer

by the end of threshold two we are moving into the ruins, into the rubble,
reprisals and hallucinatory trauma and then the elemental forces balancing, healing,
fizzle of water, cracklings of re-stabilizing, murmurs, soothing,
ever across shifting grounds, unstable but more gently unstable, organismic

deja vu and mnemic triggers however to reminiscence and resolve,
maybe even foolish new convictions,
multiple and contradictory surfaces meeting, sliding, co-existing

dull plodding of trains, announcements, wheeling of squeaky carriages, bustle

and then somewhere in there sounds played on the day of Derek Bailey's death

mixtures of too many things perhaps and yet such is life
a lot to chew on, so wan with ghost and beating with so many unknowable hearts
to pull through the thread of dense material what is ongoing and intangible

and the finale, a fragile coda, the fairy tale music box,
cranked uncertainly to defamiliarize the melody
then to play the familiar strains which should be stirring, rousing
only to find them infantile, sweet,
the infantile internationale, the lost ideal
heard on the night of a full moon

thank you, Themis, for asking, for letting it go out there
into the Triple Bath of the world

Jeff Gburek
Poznan, Poland
5.31.14