03 March 2006

Pink Elephants On Parade

...Calgon... Calgon... Calgon...normally songs send me to a world that forgets there is someone in a studio singing. Normally, I forget that there's an engineeer furiously waving their arms at the levels, a blank-eyed hanger on grinning like an ocelot at coke burns, a multi-chinned session muso picking at their nails with a Fender pick.

Normally, the music is immersive but some songs have the opposite effect. Advertising jingles, for instance, can't help but evoke a kind of eidetic false memory of thin white dorks banging out 5 min tunes in a studio in Hackneyed, of pure-bred StageSchool hounds baying at the mic, of (you get the picture).

Sun Ra's version of Disney 'classic' Pink Elephants on Parade is like this. I try to see the kaleidoscopic visuals, the psyched-out whirls and eddies, the cosmic runs, the star shpongled banners etc etc etc but all I get as soon as I hear it is Sun Ra's badass mudders in Native American Space Gear, sitting around with blank expressions, waiting for Sun Ra to baton-twirl them into action, waiting for their time to parp...

I can see their sad, puffy, little faces, sitting on stools, eye rolling to each other, itching under their Space headresses, adjusting and readjusting their jumbo Kaftan cuffs, trumpets hanging at their sides like withered limbs...

When they start singing this image gets worse and worse...overpoweringly like an odd Cosby show episode or something killed from the Prince Of Bel Air's College hoedown...I can't shake it, this dull clamour...it's ike I'm actually there retroscending all over the place, remote-viewing a scene of pure soul carnage.

And that's why I like this so much.

Sun Ra - Pink Elephants (on Parade)

A Yousendit File

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