Black Monk Time

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Mixmaster Shecky
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Black Monk Time

Postby Mixmaster Shecky » Wed Jun 11, 2008 12:21 am

<embed src="http://www.youtube.com/v/T3fAzQzgeSc&hl=en" type="application/x-shockwave-flash" width="425" height="344"></embed>


<embed src="http://www.youtube.com/v/nXKQSxsEAEQ&hl=en" type="application/x-shockwave-flash" width="425" height="344"></embed>

<embed src="http://www.youtube.com/v/fGDD-eMkwoU&hl=en" type="application/x-shockwave-flash" width="425" height="344"></embed>

O!
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Postby O! » Fri Jun 13, 2008 1:00 am

Love those haircuts! Is that an AMPLIFIED banjo!? Sweet.

Tom4
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Postby Tom4 » Fri Jun 13, 2008 11:59 am

I thought this was going to be a Thelonious Monk thread. It should be. As a matter of fact....THREADJACK.

<embed src="http://www.youtube.com/v/LyoHb2eEgaA&hl=en" type="application/x-shockwave-flash" width="425" height="344"></embed>

MF
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Postby MF » Sat Jun 14, 2008 9:29 pm

Speaking of Thelonious Monk, David Remnick had a lenghty (and I do mean lengthy) piece in the New Yorker a few weeks ago about Columbia University's radio staion - WKCR - specifically Phil Schaap's jazz program, "Bird Flight"

It included this beautiful anecdote:

During a Thelonious Monk festival, one of the d.j.s went on about how Monk created art out of "wrong notes." Monk, who rarely spoke to anyone, much less a college student, called the college radio station and, on the air, declared, "The piano ain't got no wrong notes."

The piece can be read here: http://www.newyorker.com/reporting/2008 ... upforflash

although it may take multiple sittings...

Ad
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Postby Ad » Tue Jun 17, 2008 10:43 am

Tom4 stole this thread from Shecky. I'm stealing it back.

Don't know why I didn't check out these videos earlier, but thanks for posting! The Monks were fucking great. Certainly one of the weirdest bands out there. If you like garage rock and don't own a copy of "Black Monk Time," you should probably get on that.

Jake
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Postby Jake » Thu Jun 11, 2009 7:45 am

The Monks always seemed a little too mature and arty for my idea of garage rock. I've always prefered my 60s punk to be made by snotty American teenagers trying to be the Stones. But I've recently been listening to Black Monk Time, and it's definitely cool. You can tell that they were "manufactured" by a couple of weird German artists. I think they have a lot more to do with the Velvet Underground and the Fugs, actually, than the garage rock scene. These videos are great.

creepy
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Postby creepy » Thu Jun 11, 2009 10:43 am

I've got the Monks documentary on the TiVo right now. I really need to watch it.

D. Phillips
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Postby D. Phillips » Thu Jun 11, 2009 12:16 pm

Jake wrote:The Monks always seemed a little too mature and arty for my idea of garage rock. I've always prefered my 60s punk to be made by snotty American teenagers trying to be the Stones. But I've recently been listening to Black Monk Time, and it's definitely cool. You can tell that they were "manufactured" by a couple of weird German artists. I think they have a lot more to do with the Velvet Underground and the Fugs, actually, than the garage rock scene. These videos are great.


Yes, because "Cuckoo" is just too serious for the garage rock set.

Jake
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Postby Jake » Thu Jun 11, 2009 1:15 pm

D. Phillips wrote:Yes, because "Cuckoo" is just too serious for the garage rock set.

Ha. Maybe not "serious" but deliberately silly (to the point of dadaism).

From that documentary's press release (PDF):

In a collective effort the 7 monks [band + 2 German managers] invent totally “new music”. They are looking for zero point. They idea is to deconstruct mainstream pop music. And by doing so they experience the “novelty”. The music is based on simple rhythms and repetition of rhythms. Instead of playing 4 bar or 8 bar changes the band plays 13 bars. They are working for tension points to make the audience nervous. Song beginnings, middles and endings are erased. Everything is one pure "überbeat": minimalist, aggressive, raw and dada. The lyrics are reduced to a simple framework of slogans- cynical, provocative and filled with cold war angst.

And that, to me, is pretty much the opposite of suburban teenagers just trying to impress chicks.

First they did it with the Beatles in Hamburg; a couple of years later they did it with the Monks: how much influence did German art students have on our rock and roll?!?!

Ad
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Postby Ad » Sat Jun 13, 2009 3:15 am

Jake wrote:The Monks always seemed a little too mature and arty for my idea of garage rock. I've always prefered my 60s punk to be made by snotty American teenagers trying to be the Stones. But I've recently been listening to Black Monk Time, and it's definitely cool. You can tell that they were "manufactured" by a couple of weird German artists. I think they have a lot more to do with the Velvet Underground and the Fugs, actually, than the garage rock scene. These videos are great.


Interesting. I knew they formed in Germany but didn't know that they were "manufactured," as such. I also find it interesting what different people lump into the broad umbrella of "garage rock." Like everyone else, I include all of the Back From the Grave and (the less psychedelic) Nuggets stuff in there, but I always throw in bands like The Monks, The Fugs, and even early (Safe As Milk-era) Beefheart in that category, too. The thinking man's garage rock, if will you will. But I do get that there is a world of difference on every level btw "Rats Revenge pt 1&2" and "Cuckoo." Any way you slice it, though, the Monks are fucking awesome.


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