Julian Cope presents Head Heritage

March Drudion

March 2001ce

I’m sitting here with the snow falling on the Downs, the livestock of Britain are burning to death and AVEBURY IS CLOSED! The north, south, east and western quadrants are all pasture to local sheep so the monument is totally off limits. Foot and Mouth is tearing Wiltshire apart, so, after BSE and the like, incinerating a few thousand animals seems to be the standard procedure, just as having them dine on their own ordure seemed a good idea for years. What can I write that wouldn’t be met with the reply: “No shit, Sherlock!” The roads around me are strewn with disinfectant hay from drivers tearing too fast through the Foot & Mouth checkpoints. Always too much to do too soon, always some place to go and now now now! It’s all such a Temporary Thang!

Speaking of temporary, even though I've made my rock‘n’roll mantra “Education Education Education!!!”, and even though Dorian is a school governor, and even though our entire future is reliant on the way our children are taught, still the fucking tight government placed the value of teachers on such a low rung of the Captalist Totem-pole that they are having to fleece the new South Africa of its best staff in order to provide adequate teachers for our future generations. Oh, un-forward-thinking Reactionary Mofos!

As I daily earwash my brain with the strains of stomping space rock‘n’roll, I become evermore convinced that Beethoven’s argument for music as the higher authority should become a radical educational policy. Enough la-di-da hymns in our schools by bogus clerics such as Alvin Stardust (no shit!) – Enough clerical pessimism – No more Riff cliched! Let’s reach for the stars for ourselves and for our children. I’m currently gorging myself on the double-live CD by Les Rallizes Denudes. These guys are the Japanese Velvet Underground for sure – they take a riff like “Sally Go Round the Roses” and punish it for 20-minutes until the lead guitar has sweated out all the cliches and returned it to the pure enlightenment of the earliest folk song. Let’s do the same for education, sweating out all the carved-in-stone taken-for-granted Romanism and replace it with the glowing self-evidence of language and the land. What the Romans Did For Us is as slim a volume as George W. Bush’s My Journal of Holidays Abroad – I'm a cultural refusenik and I will not take their mindless and groundless abuse. U-Know!

Now, Les Rallizes have subsided and I’m bathed in the Cluster-ised glory of Extrem Musik a la Ping Pong’s Phase 1 LP – a lost Krautrock bliss-out in the Neu 75 meets No Pussyfooting tradition of Novelty. This music should win prizes. But hey, instead pudgy corporate knobhounds like M&M win awards for their malformed Quasimodean muse. Why-O-why? As the National Lampoon once asked, has he never been boned up the ass for being a wise guy? The uninformed hate dripping out of that drooler creates fallout all over the teenage wasteland, whilst kiss-ass liberal hacks fall over themselves to write a Guardian appraisal of that cyclopean prostitute. Crying “Free Speech! Free Speech!” is their one method in their defence of his art. Well, Free Speech comes with Responsibility, Motherfucker. M&M ain’t never said a single thing he really meant, or his pussy posse would shaft his soggy ass fer sure! M’s doing it for the bucks and he’s living in lux! Supporting M&M is like supporting McDonalds – it ain’t exactly the radical act the hacks would wish it to be. No, though I guess calling him a Veritable Dictionary of Tosswank could be!

Me? I’m playing with Acid Mother Temple in May, after their leader Kawabata Makoto invited me to contribute to some new recordings and a coupla shows. I’ll be trying to get to the Stirling gig, and I’ll be DJ-ing some rare Japanese space rock at their London show at the Garage. U-know! Donneye is here at the moment, programming and preparing for the April tour and learning lotsa new songs. And as the Brain Donor artwork nears fluorescent meltdown (especially the 7" picture disc!), the L.A.M.F. album is close to Ur-punk completion and features a couple of particularly ripe heavy rock samples. There’s lots going on at the moment – even my prospective British Museum festival seems to be easing on down the road, and has been tentatively marked down for October this year. I just hope we’ve still got food to eat by the time they burned up the landscape – at the Dutch customs they were even confiscating packed lunches from any casual Brits Abroad! Maybe we should quit while we’re still ahead.

Indeed, I’ll quit now while I’M still ahead,

Love on y’all,

JULIAN (M’Lud Yatesbury)