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Lucas Schleicher

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Lucas Schleicher has been writing for Brainwashed for nearly 10 years. He is from St. Louis and misses living there a lot. In 2010 he graduated from Boston College with a curiously unmarketable M.A. in Philosophy. He is very happy this happened. Many things were heard, seen, experienced, and read in 2010, some of which are shared below.

Header for 2010 list

 

  1. Jack Rose passed away. He is one of my favorite guitarists. His last album, Luck in the Valley, was one of three releases I listened to constantly throughout the year. The Things That We Used to Do, a DVD with Glenn Jones, and Ragged and Right with D. Charles Speer & The Helix were the others. I am sad I'll never get to meet him, see him live, or hear another of his records.
  2. Jaga Jazzist released One-Armed Bandit, which has persisted in being my favorite album over the last 12 months. In retrospect, this might have been an omen of my current obsession with jazz and classical music.
  3. Swans toured again, just like Michael Gira had told Brainwashed they would. Their new album, My Father Will Guide Me Up a Rope to the Sky, is definitely great, but their show at the Middle East Club in Cambridge, MA was infinitely better. Anyone that loves Swans has never heard them until they've heard them live. Please tour again, Swans. Please.
  4. I watched a lot more movies this year than I have in the past, among them Fritz Lang's "complete" Metropolis and Carl Theodor Dreyer's The Passion of Joan of Arc. The first was excellent, the latter changed my life. The Criterion edition of Joan of Arc is coupled with a stunning soundtrack by Richard Einhorn and should be sought out at all costs.
  5. Also on my movie list was Werckmeister Harmonies, directed by Béla Tarr. Its opening scene is the best opening scene in any movie ever. You can watch it on Youtube by visiting this link. I suggest watching this movie ASAP.
  6. I've known it for a long time, but the Disingenuity EP is as good a reason as any to say it again: Keith Fullerton Whitman is the best musician in Boston and one of the best in the world. He's constantly playing superb live shows, releasing awesome music, and acting as a general source of inspiration. Somehow he finds time to manage Mimaroglu while he's at it. I hope I get to see him a lot more in 2011.
  7. Charles Gocher, percussionist for Sun City Girls, passed away fighting cancer in 2007. The band released their final album, Funeral Mariachi, just this year. It's a beautiful and sad record, and it has compelled me to go searching through the rest of their discography. Had it been released sooner, I'm certain it would have eclipsed One-Armed Bandit as my favorite record of the year. I wish I would have started paying attention to them sooner.
  8. Soon after getting my degree from Boston College, I picked up a copy of Alex Ross's book, The Rest is Noise. After years of reading Kant and Husserl, I was ready to catch up on a huge reading list. I finished it right at the end of the year and it's a stupendous book. It's made my preoccupation with classical and jazz music much stronger, and it gave me all the context I could ask for when it comes to 20th century composition. I bet most people have already read it, but if you're someone who hasn't, go pick it up. Be prepared to go diving through the classical section at your favorite record store afterwards. I found so many great records for a dollar at the local shops, you wouldn't even believe it. Apple and iTunes can suck it.
  9. Speaking of classical music: Mahler. Lots and lots of Mahler. How am I supposed to get through Stockhausen and Cage when Mahler is always calling my name?
  10. Henryk Górecki's Third Symphony is a whole lot more devastating than I remember it being. After he died on November 12th, I went back to that work and was turned into a soft, whimpering mess by it.
  11. My girlfriend bought me a copy of Charles Mingus's East Coasting and a friend of mine recommended Black Saint and the Sinner Lady around the same time. For at least two months they were the only records I wanted to hear. While everyone else was keeping up with a pretty great 2010, I was doing my best to digest Mingus's best records. I now think they're among the best in my collection. I'm not sure how I ever got along without him.
  12. Sun Ra took over my life around the same time Mingus did. I went from owning exactly none of his records to having eight. Lanquidity and the Heliocentric records are up there with all the great Miles Davis and John Coltrane records I own. If Mingus doesn't break my bank in 2011, Le Sony'r Ra will.
  13. I went swimming in the Atlantic Ocean for the first time since I was a very small child. I did it in Maine, in fairly cold water, and it was a ton of fun. I see now why some people love the beach so much.
  14. Captain Beefheart will be missed. He hadn't released any new music in a long time, but Trout Mask Replica and Safe as Milk are works of total genius and insanity. Shiny Beast and Doc at the Radar Station are pretty great, too. He's an American giant, and his music has no equal.
  15. Western New York is a golden place. New York City is great, but Steam Valley is greater.
  16. Niagara Falls is a miracle. Ride the Maid of the Mist if you visit, just standing there and looking at it is nothing compared to having the falls almost swallow you whole.
  17. A personal message to the members of Emeralds: I met you very briefly. You were all very funny and very nice, but I swear to God you guys need to slow down with all the good music you release. I can't keep up at all. I am selfishly requesting that you send all your music to Brainwashed.com for comprehensive review coverage just in case slowing down isn't desirable. That is my only hope of making sure I hear everything you do. Also, Does It Look Like I'm Here? rules.
  18. Jon Whitney introduced me to the music of Robert Haigh. I love his music and his 2010 album, Anonymous Lights, is spectacular. Now, I listen to him on an almost daily basis. Thanks, Jon!
  19. Boston crowds can be terribly noisy, especially when perfectly great opening bands are on stage and beer is available. Will you all please shut up? I'm sure there are better places for you to get drunk and gossip.
  20. I miss St. Louis a lot, especially my friends and family, whom I love very much. After living in Boston for 4 years, I've come to the conclusion that most cities are what you make of them. When I was a teenager and in my early 20s, so many of my friends talked about getting out or getting away, but there are days when all I want to do is get back. Being home for the holidays made me appreciate where I come from and where I could be going. It also reminded me that Vintage Vinyl is one of the best record stores in the country and that the Arch is beyond cool. Seriously, have you been in that thing?! Surreal.
  21. Twisted Village in Harvard Square closed after 14 years of service. I was only around for four of them, but it was an awesome place to dive through records and the staff was always helpful to me and extra nice. I miss you, Twisted Village. Nothing in Boston compares.
  22. "Let me tell you the story of Right Hand, Left Hand. It's a tale of good and evil. Hate: it was with this hand that Cane iced his brother. Love: these five fingers, they go straight to the soul of man. The right hand: the hand of love. The story of life is this: static. One hand is always fighting the other hand, and the left hand is kicking much ass. I mean, it looks like the right hand, Love, is finished. But hold on, stop the presses, the right hand is coming back. Yeah, he got the left hand on the ropes, now, that's right. Ooh, it's a devastating right and Hate is hurt, he's down. Left-Hand Hate KOed by Love." Do the Right Thing cooked my brain.
  23. Hey Jen and Wilson! I love you guys. Thanks for being there for me. I mean it.
  24. Jumping out of an airplane is the most frightening thing I've ever done. And the most stupid. I had nightmares about it even after I jumped. The sound you make falling to the ground is awesome (and terrifying), though. Glad I did it. I'll never do it again.
  25. I watched the Wikileaks scandal unfold, and now I think about it almost daily. Assaults on free speech and other constitutional rights are growing and it scares me. Some say I'm paranoid, and I hope they're right, but moving out of the country keeps looking more and more attractive.
  26. NASA held a press conference about bacteria that incorporates arsenic in its DNA. I held my breath hoping they had found alien life somewhere in the universe, but wasn't totally let down. I can't help thinking that in 20 years, if the human race is still around, this will be one of the greatest discoveries ever. Dear God, please send us (friendly) aliens.
  27. Giuseppe Ielasi will be on my radar in the future. His (third) Stunt and 15 Tapes EPs are excellent. I had heard some of his music before, but never gave the rest of his work the attention it deserves, mostly because I assumed his output was one-dimensional ambient stuff. Obviously I was wrong.
  28. Peter Christopherson passed into the great beyond this year. He left an enormous and unequaled body of work behind him, as well as many friends and admirers. Among musicians, he had more influence on me than almost anyone else. Throbbing Gristle might be his most celebrated project, but Coil thoroughly changed my life. The music he made with Jhonn touched me emotionally and intellectually, serving as the catalyst that propelled me into the wide world of experimental music and exotic philosophies. I can honestly say Coil taught me something about the world and myself, which sounds corny but is absolutely true. When I met Peter during Brainwaves 2008, I was happy to discover he was a somewhat quiet, obviously tender human being who cared immensely about music and the people around him. He was good humored enough to de-curse my illegitimate copy of Horse Rotorvator and exhibited the kind of humility I wish I had. I'm thankful I found his music and told him what it meant to me. I only wish I would have had the time to know him more.
  29. "And if you have taken a wrong turning, then to go forward does not get you any nearer. If you are on the wrong road, progress means doing an about-turn and walking back to the right road; and in that case the man who turns back soonest is the most progressive man."

 




Last Updated on Tuesday, 04 January 2011 23:25  


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