Julian Cope presents Head Heritage

February Drudion 2002 CE

February 2002ce

Lay-deeez! Gennle-men!

February already and X-Mass seems so long gone. By now, I’ve walked miles across these fair Marlborough Downs in wind, rain and magnificent sunlight. What a weird time weez all living in – feel like James Brown said in his endless one-chord mantra "Mind Power": we’re living in the most crucial time the world has ever known.

But can this be? Or is it just that the linear Patriarchal world of Mutually Assured Destruction is destined to work only when we’re all so tense and on our toes that every moment feels as though it could be our last? Become a parent and the state owns your ass pretty much straight away. 1066 set the pattern when the Normans told the Saxons: "no, you are not slaves. We’ll just call it UnFreedom." Man, that chills me to the bones. 7 a.m. every winter morning I am unfree. Sun’s still waiting over the horizon, not even a whiff of Mithra there to herald its golden glow, and there’s Mom & Dad struggling to co-ordinate whatever. Now, this is me talking and I’m a forward-thinking Motherfucking lunar shaman who often wakes at 6 a.m. just to listen to abject sludge-ified rock’n’roll. In many ways, the very early morning suits me. But what is this doing to people who hate the morning – and most people do. Before the industrial revolution, people got up when it was light. Weren’t no point in getting up early because you couldn’t see fuck all. Don’t think I’m rambling – this is important kaka with no answers. At least not while the Man has us by the plums.

And what do I listen to at 6a.m.? Speed, Glue & Shinki – what else? Slow sludge without its own IQ. That’s just about the only thing that calls out to me in the mornings. Where are those headphones, I gotta listen to Joey Smith, the only singing drummer who combines Bill Ward throwing-bibles-at-the-sofa drumfills with the wingeing whinny of shit-period Ozzy singing "(They’ll Never Know Why) We Rock". Oh yeah, and "Future Shock" by Bang really does it for me at 6 a.m. In fact, I’m still looking for that perfect very early 70s Sludge LP to make Album of the Month. My mate Tatsuya sent me a copy of the soon-to-be-reissued DK Mushroom & Son album from 1973, and it’s slow enough and grating enough, but Joey Smith doesn’t bother singing on it! Bad show. And the problem with these modern Japanese bands is they’ve got the riffs but no sense of space. It’s not even in their vocabulary. Nishinihon just plaster over it with multi-noodling, whilst High Rise just ramalama all the way to the end. I’m looking for the kind of emptiness that Donor achieved on their slow songs, only slower. Shambling, trudging, dragging itself lifelessly and largactylled out of its already sub-normal mind. You know about some? Then gimme! I need!

Meanwhile, back in that which passes for the real world, it’s not easy to forget the sight of dozens of orange-clad blindfolded and cuffed prisoners in the dog-kennels at the euphoniously-named Camp X-Ray. Sounds like the name of a gay stripper. And what’s all this about an American military camp in Cuba? Isn’t that like the Taliban renting space in the twin towers? When does cycnicism become unshocking, or am I still a babby? What’s surely scarier is the fact that clueless American government officials thought the photos of Camp X-ray okay to send out to the world. Looks like they’re employing the Taliban’s PR company. Fuck me, these are some stupid people. The only good thing about being British is that we’re so long past our world supremacy stage that we can gasp along with everyone else when pre-school America changes playground alliances for the third time that day, and smears another big greeny on some lesser neighbour’s packed lunch. Americans are already more concerned about their economy than about the war. They have the attention span of a cadis fly larva. Reminds me of when Prince did that shit so-called concept album "Sign of the Times’. One song about the heavyness of the times and a bunch of filler about starfish and coffee, or somesuch shit. When I recorded Autogeddon, the American journalists who hated it asked me why we needed an entire album of anti-car songs? And even the ones on my side couldn’t handle that EVERY song was about the destruction of the world by automobile. But that’s America for you. Even a movie about Pearl Harbour has to have a love affair at its centre in order to sugar-coat it for dummies. Even the title of the Harry Potter book AND movie had to be changed from the ‘Philosopher’s Stone’ to the ‘Sorcerer’s Stone’ in case Yankee nincompoops thought it was about philosophers! Aaaaaaargh!

Now rock’n’roll suffered a coupla tragedies this month. Poor Florian Fricke from Popol Vuh died of cancer. But weirdest was the suicide of my ertswhile mate Jon Lee from Feeder. I dunno why but the poor guy hanged himself in Florida. John Lee was a dear guy and it’s almost impossible to believe that he did it at all, especially as he has a wife and child. Thighpaulsandra had known him since he was a teenager and knows his parents really well, and they are just distraught. As Feeder operates right outside the domain that Copean thought inhabits, you might wanna grab a copy of 20 Mothers and take a look at that sweet-looking guy – he’s there on the inner gatefold. On the upper level, to the right of the fold at the centre, you can see Lisa Bennett dramatically flinging her arms apart. Jon is the cute guy in the purple hat just behind her – may he rest in peace.

I’ll quit now, but before I do I noticed something extremely timely considering my many rants about the death of the world because of Monotheism. They just found Akhenaten’s sarcophagus lid in Germany and re-united it with his mummy in Egypt. Akhenaten was virtually the proto-daddy of Monotheism, the pharoah who dared to banish all the Egyptian Gods and Goddesses such as Osiris, Maat and Horus, and replace them with just the one: the Sun’s disc. It didn’t work and they kicked his dead ass and trashed his temples when he died. They even told his son Tutenkhaten to lose the –aten bit of his name and return to the good old days, hence Tutenkamun. But seeing Akhenaten’s sarcophagus lid being lifted into place this week, I couldn’t help feeling a twinge of sadness that the wanker wouldn’t have started all that bullshit if he coulda glimpsed forwards 3500 years. But hey, now that WOULD be hindsight.

I’ll clear off, kiddies,

Mr. DRUDE (M’Lud Yatesbury)