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just like a drummer

i wake up with the thunder of your typewriter, every night

 I am emerging like a wet, pink baby slithered from a womb, from the washy-drek of writing about Derrida, reading about Derrida and seizing in my sleep, to break my own rule and talk about a record that has absolutely no correlation to the Irish Music Scene whatsoever. I’ll leave it to whatever sort of beast reads this blog to flagellate, while inside my head the supposed epileptic tosses the furniture to David Koresh Superstar, the third and most ambitious album by Sussex band, The Indelicates.

I have had an obsession with cults since I was 15 years old and Mike Guard – a crumpled mole of a man hired by the governments of the UK and Ireland to assist in extracting people from the grasps of authoritarian religious sects – visited our school to blow about seven minds with his stories of kids JUST LIKE US who got caught up with the “wrong side of religion”. I won’t make this an essay on the ironies of bland and uniformed convent girls being lectured on the dangers of fundamentalism, because that would be too easy and not very interesting. Guard, however, was fascinating to those of us willing to stay awake through his white board experiments and strangely evocative discussions on how, yes, people will believe anything you tell them with enough conviction. Unlike the masses of vagina cladden teenagers with pierced tongues hanging spongy from their mouths, I was ripe for this and spent the next few months reading about Sharon Tate’s split belly, Kool-Aid spiked with cyanide and David Berg’s massive beard (actually massive).

One name that, interestingly, I didn’t come across until recently was David Koresh, dyslexic Texan and Branch Davidan sect leader that believed himself to be the prohpet and the man at the centre of a fifty one day siege at Waco, Texas. The attack on Koresh’s camp ended on April 19th, 1993 with the FBI broadcasting the elliptical, “David, you have had your fifteen minutes of fame… Vernon is no longer the messiah.” and the proceeding gas-aided gunfire that raged and killed the remaining Mount Carmel occupants at Waco, pissing all over agent Byron Sage’s promise that “this is not an assault […] we do not want to hurt anyone.” Seventy six people died in total over the course of 51 days, including sixteen children under 5, two pregnant woman and of course, Koresh, himself.

And that is the tiniest history for the massive backdrop that makes up ‘David Koresh Superstar‘, the Webberian concept record, which is, as well as history, crammed with crushing ballads (“The Woman Clothed with the Sun” and “Superstar” being those that draw most blood), theatrical and frenzied choruses and the almost lunacied conviction of Simon’s Koresh. The record also closes with a gospelly, call and response cover of “John the Revelator”, a perfect accidental for a record that rages and sooths in equal measures.

I think the thing that made me so obsessive about cults, in retrospect, was not the carnage or any degree of interest in the things these people actually believed, but rather the phenomenon that Mike Guard had told me at 15 and had with soft vowels and a slight midlandy lisp convinced me of; That these kids were just like me and that people would, and some needed to believe anything you tell them, with enough conviction. And almost every song on this album is, in that context, heart-breaking. There’s no smugness or overbearing irony, just really sad music about people who had really sad lives. Bad people, in some cases if you believe in that sort of thing, good people in others, but on a whole, pretty damaged people who lived damaged lives and were ultimately damaged by their tragic deaths. There’s a fuck bucket of politics too, and I could make BLANKET STATEMENTS about the policies of salty-bastard-Bill-Clinton, but I’m trying this thing where I don’t metamorphose into Bill Hicks at the drop of a topical conversation.

Anyway, the point of this post is that this is a delightful record. Once again I’ve failed to actually provide any critical information about how the violins are mad lovely and the vocals are, characteristically, mad lovely and how basses and drums do things I could never hope to understand so will not attempt to write about, ever. But I will do something of use now and tell you where you can get your hands on David Koresh Superstar, convinced as I’m sure you are, that it is the right thing to do. You know, fundamentally.

You can now officially order the record here and check out the tour dates on their website, here.

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