Wednesday, March 14, 2007

Black and/or White

Pretty rare that one encounters a novel that is so full of interesting ideas. I have read that Aronofsky is preparing a movie based on this book. You would hope he did not.

Once again I was led back to my current obsession. As much as there have been theories about film over the last fifty years (they all get treated quite succinctly in Flicker), still not one satisfying theory about popular music has been proposed (I was reading Adorno's take on the subject recently and I almost laughed). Always theories about music are drawn inexorably into the sphere of cultural theory. Granted music is culture but if there is such a thing as film theory, then why, I ask you, is there not such a thing as music theory?

Sometimes I think that it may even be too late to come up with such a theory. The extreme process of democratization that has been ushered by the internet, where every single taste is covered by a niche, that, in turn, will defragment into smaller niches if necessary, will never again allow a unifying theory.

If the antithesis and cross-feeding between overground and underground once could have been a starting point for a sort of dynamic, then that time is surely over. The overground is no longer declared enemy of the underground. They just live seperately, with the overground sometimes absorbing the more effete characteristics of the underground (see Banhart or Coco Rosie as so-called "free folk"), the ones that are deemed not too overpowering for the general public.

Innovation thus seems a trifle point, it remains ever underground, amazing the few, but never reaching the masses, except in an extremely honed, and thus devoid of all critical, form.

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