Tales From the Bitface (Posts about new wave)https://devilgate.org/enContents © 2020 <a href=”mailto:martin@devilgate.org”>Martin McCallion</a> Thu, 11 Jun 2020 11:57:49 GMTNikola (getnikola.com)http://blogs.law.harvard.edu/tech/rssThis Is Memorial Device by David Keenan (Books 2018, 24)https://devilgate.org/blog/2018/09/08/this-is-memorial-device-by-david-keenan-books-2018-24/Martin McCallion<p>I don’t know where I learned about this. It’s been sitting on my Kindle for a while. I have a feeling that a friend recommended it on Facebook. It’s subtitled “An Hallucinated Oral History of the Post-Punk Scene in Airdrie, Coatbridge and Environs 1978–1986,” which annoys me, but only because of that “<strong>An</strong> Hallucinated.” Not because it’s a subtitle. I like subtitles.</p> <p>And this subtitle describes its book extremely well, especially with respect to that incorrectly-articled vision. It’s the fictionalised biography of a band called Memorial Device. Or at least that’s partly what it is. It verges on magic realism at times. It’s presented as a series of interviews and parts written by other contributors (as opposed to the supposed author, “Ross Raymond”). The actual author does a fine job of presenting those different voices and making them <em>sound</em> different. The whole thing reads like an actual music biography where the author has drawn on the experiences of a range of people as well as their own experience.</p> <p>The hallucinatory part comes from the way some of those people speak, or write. They are variously damaged or otherwise otherworldly, and their mental strangeness comes across well — or is it the world that’s strange?</p> <p>Airdrie is in the west of Scotland, not far from Glasgow, so it’s very much the same part of the world I grew up in. This feels very realistic: there was a similar swathe of bands inspired by punk and the post-punk/new wave/new romantic scene around Dumbarton and environs. None of the characters were as much larger-than-life as some of the members of Memorial Device — or at least not that I knew — but that’s why this is fictional, I guess.</p> <p>Not the best thing I’ve read this, year, but not bad.</p> Booksbooks 2018electromusicnew romanticsnew wavepost-punkpunkhttps://devilgate.org/blog/2018/09/08/this-is-memorial-device-by-david-keenan-books-2018-24/Fri, 07 Sep 2018 23:22:50 GMT