25 May 2014

Sinnerman / AB/7A

You come back to this and you stay with it. Not simple, but propulsive. Everyone's heard the abbreviated, House-cat version (a house cat indeed) but not enough (i.e. not everyone) have heard it in its full glory. The message is the medium; these tinkling pianos and drums are just tinkling over 4 or 5 or 6 minutes; they need oscillation time, time to stop you breathing. Some tracks are bigger than others.

In truth, Sinnerman probably needs longer than this 10 min version but this is all we've got (that might not be true). The words need to be leeched out of the rhythms; extension is the primary quality (I think Locke said this first), the duration is its intensity.

25 years ago, a friend of mine, now sadly departed (not shuffled off, never that - roared out into that terrible room next door) made a long long long ('Europe Endless') version of Throbbing Gristle's AB/7A by cutting up and redubbing tape cassettes and it took him ages and we probably only listened to it all the way through once but if you can understand why it was necessary (I hope Chris Carter understands and finishes the job) then you can also understand that Sinnerman isn't the shortened version they use in films and adverts. That song is pretty, can sell scenes and things, can slip itself into the marketplace but isn't Sinnerman. Sinnerman is this.

Nina Simone - Sinnerman

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