Magma : De Futura
This year my company moved to modern, anti-septic building and adopted an open-space office environment. My desk is no longer mine. My mind is no longer my own. There isn't a conversation going on that I can't overhear or an image on my computer screen that five other people can't see. So my new best friend is a pair of Bose noise-cancellation headphones and my huge library of 1976 recordings.
But what should I play? I can't write with Al Stewart chirping lyrics about Bogart movies in my ears. I need either instrumentals (Tangerine Dream's Stratosfear ? Pat Metheny's Bright Size Life?) or lyrics in a language I can ignore ( Harmonium's L'Heptade? Popul Vuh's Letzte Tage Letze Nacht).
I may discuss all these albums in the future but the album that makes the rest of the world vanish immediately is my current obsession, Magma's Udu Wudu. Led by jazz drummer Christian Vander, Magma is a french progressive rock band that doesn't sing in French. They perform in a made up alien language called Kobaian and they sing about Earth battling an alien planet called Kobaia. Udu Wudu is dominated by bass player Jannick Top and is highlighted by the near 18-minute Side Two track "De Futura".
It sounds like something orcs would listen to before going to battle. And isn't that what we all need when we're surrounded by co-workers ?
It all sounds like something from a long lost time but just last year Magma toured the United States and performed at Seattle's Crocodile Cafe. Did I see them? No. But I wish I had. Especially now that they're helping me get my work done.