Corby's Orbit

Corby's Orbit
Listening in All the High Places illustration by John Kricfalusi

Sunday, January 31, 2010

Butterfly Ballad

When I compose you by night
By brushing so lightly
Mumbling lyrics by heart
Eyes closed, not tight
Inside the dark where
The veil of my lashes embarks on,
The cascade erotisme of light
When you emerge from the edges
Of solitaire columns
Hazy ribbons like saffron
Curl the flavor,
The violet creation,
That purges your purple of frozen fright.


Saturday, January 30, 2010

Space Icicle Storms and Cosmic Snow Squalls Prorogued by Roots Music

Big Rude Jake made the studio ring live, Friday at 11 a.m., with the rush of his blues and his carnivorous lyrics. Freezin' Julian Fauth arrived early, carrying a biography of Earl Hooker and played us a quieter, more melancholy blues on his second instrument after the piano, an old Gibson f-hole guitar, evoking pre-war roadhouse intimacy. He selected a rare Memphis Slim / Roosevelt Sykes track from the Orbit Library to play, and sang a delta-style Happy Birthday to a friend who turns 90 today. Then Greg Lawson and the Governor General beamed up with some fine exotic reggae, paying respects to the late Lynn Taitt and Yabby You, in support of their monthly gig, ruling the Embassy in Kensington on final Saturdays. Informative background on the artists and songs sent out wow radiations back through the stratosphere, contributing to a climate change that brought out the sun in everyone tuned in.,

Friday, January 29, 2010

Penderecki Wields In Toronto

Winona Zelenka

I caught the first installment of Krzyzstof Penderecki's chamber repertoire at Walter Hall Wednesday. I walked in at showtime and sat in the front row. Only in Toronto.
The Maestro was in attendance: he is Artist in Residence at the U of T music faculty this week. A major choral performance at Metropolitan United Church Saturday night and Sunday afternoon will climax his fertile tenure.
Both major cello solos were featured: the second, more gregarious composition written for Slava Rostropovitch opened the show; played by Winona Zelenka with a knowing and trusting smile, her sincerity and sensitivity obeying the amoebic flow of the composition as she seduced Penderecki's muse openly and lovingly. The 1953 Sonata for Violin and Piano that followed was a tight negotiation between the predatory motions of piano and the tidal gradients of the violin, which evaded the columnar obstructions of harmony with billowing sails of semitonal bouyancy.
The revolutionary 1968 cello solo that followed ( Capriccio per Sigfried Palm )brought all of the composer's anti-totalitarian forces into play: pre-Walesa dockyard uproar, the narrative fragmented into mathematical intervals, bestial queries, boatwhistles and seagulls, and a sudden sweet Spanish C arpeggio motif of intimate clarity, followed by bowing on both sides of the bridge, the cello verite approach bringing out the furniture voices of the instrument, requiring the full breadth of the hand, making contortionist demands upon David Hetherington's temperament, fulfilled with both abruptness and candor, bouncing and scraping, and ending with a long true foghorn tone bowed ON THE TAILPIECE.
Building in complexity and ensemble size, a Quartet for Clarinet and String Trio followed with long rich tones flowing from both reeds and strings, the clarinet inviting the strings into a conversation with a minor third query resulting in airy diminished flights of commentary, ghost-whispering from a violin and melancholy ruminations on the part of the cello. Breathy nostalgia and perhaps hopefulness are the responses of the clarinet, followed by excited pizzicatos, a rise into a waltzing celebration without traditional resolutions, like a nightmare polka that leads into a release from the turmoil of opinion into a communal certainty. Really good music.
Finally, a triumphant performance of the Sextet for Clarinet, Horn, Violin, Viola, Cello and Piano ( which Penderecki himself has "rarely heard performed so well"), exemplified the composer's poetic claritas at its best. The strings and sequestered horn negotiate, in increments of minor seconds, a very delicate proposition, forming allegiances and then overriding rhythmic constraint and restraints with gestures of humourous or obstreperous abandon until a descending theme crystallizes to dominate the second movement. The verve of the performers galvanized the audience into a tumult of applause, and the Maestro came to the stage for joyful embraces and cheek kissing. The flowers of his imagination had filled and decorated our faces and hearts like they were antique vases stuffed with fresh bouquets.
The smell of oranges, tingling, sweet and complex with the vigour of acidity.
The waxing frigid moon in the steamy exultation of a clear obsidian sky.

Sunday, January 24, 2010

Song For Haiti

,Dear Pat Robertson,

I know that you know that all press is good press, so I appreciate the
shout-out. And you make God look like a big mean bully who kicks people when
they are down, so I'm all over that action. But when you say that Haiti has
made a pact with me, it is totally humiliating. I may be evil incarnate, but
I'm no welcher. The way you put it, making a deal with me leaves folks
desperate and impoverished. Sure, in the afterlife, but when I strike
bargains with people, they first get something here on earth -- glamour,
beauty, talent, wealth, fame, glory, a golden fiddle. Those Haitians have
nothing, and I mean nothing. And that was before the earthquake. Haven't you
seen "Crossroads"? Or "Damn Yankees"? If I had a thing going with Haiti,
there'd be lots of banks, skyscrapers, SUVs, exclusive night clubs, Botox --
that kind of thing. An 80 percent poverty rate is so not my style. Nothing
against it -- I'm just saying: Not how I roll. You're doing great work, Pat,
and I don't want to clip your wings -- just, come on, you're making me look
bad. And not the good kind of bad. Keep blaming God. That's working. But
leave me out of it, please. Or we may need to renegotiate your own contract.

Best, Satan

Friday, January 22, 2010

Airborne Patrol : Skindred and Kool Keith feat. Tom Waits


"Spacious Thoughts" NASA feat. Kool Keith & Tom Waits from Fluorescent Hill on Vimeo.

Raucous politico-musical solar winds of change permeating the Orbital frame with the burning refrain: Stand For Something...Or You'll Fall For Anything.

Ravi Naimpally From Tasa Goes Tabla-Galactic on Today's Show

About Tasa
Toronto’s Tasa is celebrating ten years as one of the country’s leading Indian world fusion ensembles by creating its most contemporary sounding fusion yet. On its brand new album, Alchemy, the group builds on its intricate Indo-jazz jam sound to create an even more sophisticated musical mélange that wouldn’t sound out of place in the Buddha Bar.

Saturday, January 16, 2010

Brill Ska!!!! Tokyo Ska Paradise Orchestra And Desmond Dekker

Flightpath: Winter in Sweden

Midwinter in Sweden from Henning S on Vimeo.

Immoderate Orbital Visitations

As promised, if the Orbit is rockin', don't bother knockin'...JUST COME IN!!!
On a musical spree for three hours Friday the 15th, the live-ication to the people of Haiti and a long conversation with Danny Marks opened the show. Danny revisited some high and low spots in his career (turning Robert Plant's amp off at the O'Keefe, learning from Rough Trade's Kevan Staples a secret guy-trick)and he played two songs live, including his tribute to Lonnie Johnson. Then Gary, a First-Nations activist arrived to name names and detail his attempts to find justice for the generations of residential school victims.catl arrived and pivoted the Orbit into a country blues trajectory with a preview of their show at the Silver Dollar; a version of Goodnight Irene drew out the fine vocal contiguity between catl and Sarah. (By way of spreadin' musical rumours....
I went 2C catl on Friday..people were dancing and SNEAKING CIGARETTES in the public darkness and th singer was saying very bad words and singing about death and girls loudly and Sarah had a purple sequin dress like on the cover of NOW spinning in tambourine ecstacy and the drummer went off like a machine gun with a heart.
Kiosk ESL students present in the studio were then treated to LIVE Acoustic Funk ( is that even possible? YESSSSSS!) from K.C. Roberts, Melodica Tod and Cajone Chino from Live Revolution.
The show was followed by an interview from Stuart Feedback Andrews with Reverend Ken Arnett, who has produced a documentary on the perfidy of the United Church in its treatment of residential schools. A circular spiritual orbit with jam and sprinkles.

Wednesday, January 13, 2010

An invitango to inner times and outer spaces.

The thrashionable verticulture of guitarbage and chicken nudist soup giantizes iconography to obliterate the small prince and the minds between the lines. As you try to pop your lips off the bubblepack, try to seek out CKLN 88.1 this Friday for infusions of the future, to detweak your pique with Danny Marks at 11:30 talkin Maple Blues and Winterfolk, and current Now cover - punks catl in live stampede at12:30, then K.C. Roberts and friends for a convivial inside track on his Revival gig at 1. Computer access @CKLN.FM Listen Live and Cable 947. Be there or laissez faire!

CATL @ Dakota from NOW Magazine on Vimeo.

Friday, January 8, 2010

Trans-Elvis Hootenany Mixpod Tapecast Remix

XLNS of the new year's second show wih a light frosting of bass metals and folk tongues. Howard Gladstone visited and played and I read the African story about God leaving us with hearts to seek Him, a propos of \Elvis' 75th birthday and the passing of Lhasa, Montreal's chanteuse du \soleil.

Thursday, January 7, 2010

“We live lives based upon selected fictions. Our view of reality is conditioned by our position in space and time – not by our personalities as we like to think. Thus every interpretation of reality is based upon a unique position. Two paces east or west and the whole picture is changed.”
Lawrence Durrell

Nightlosers Vampire Blues

"In Bucharest, with a few hours to kill, we found a big music shop.
They had five copies. I bought two. When we got back, I hit the internet
in the hope of contacting the band. To the strains of "Pretty Thing"
(played with a rumba beat) and "Stormy Monday Blues" (given a slinky
cowboy feel) I located a site that told me Nightlosers had hardly ever left
Transylvania, just making it to a festival in Budapest once. Unfortunately,
their e-mail didn't work. So here am I with one of the weirdest, most beguiling
CDs of music I've ever heard and I can't tell the group they've now made the
papers in Britain. But one thing I know for sure: put them on at the next Meltdown
series and they'll steal the show." -THE INDEPENDENT UK
Even Transylvanians get the bluesNightlosers
Tonight Thurs Jan 7 @ Lee's Palace
doors 8pm - 2 sets - no support
Tix @ ROTATE THIS, CIRCUS BOOKS & MUSIC (Danforth @ Jones)
and and the door

Tuesday, January 5, 2010

"We will all die soon enough. Why not take the short time we have on this delicate planet and figure out some really interesting things we might do together? I promise you, God would be happier. So many people are always trying to speak for God - I know it is a very dangerous thing to do. I tried my whole life not to do it. But this one time is an exception. Because there are so many people crying and scarred and confused and complicated and exhausted right now - it is as if we have all had a giant simultaneous break-down. I beg you, as your distant Arab cousin, as your American neighbor, listen to me. Our hearts are broken, as yours may also feel broken in some ways we can't understand, unless you tell us in words. Killing people won't tell us. We can't read that message. Find another way to live. Don't expect others to be like you. Read Rumi. Read Arabic poetry. Poetry humanizes us in a way that news, or even religion, has a harder time doing. A great Arab scholar, Dr. Salma Jayyusi, said, "If we read one another, we won't kill one another." Read American poetry. Plant mint. Find a friend who is so different from you, you can't believe how much you have in common. Love them. Let them love you. Surprise people in gentle ways, as friends do. The rest of us will try harder too. Make our family proud." naomi shihab nye

Monday, January 4, 2010

Top Ten 2009

1 The Wheat Pool Hauntario
2 Rose Cousins The Send Off
3 Louwop the Dirty General The Great Escape
4 Terry Clarke It’s About Time
5 Neko Case Middle Cyclone
6 Warsaw Village Band Infinity
7 Skindred Shark Bites and Dogfights
8 Jay Aymar Halfway Home
9 KC Roberts and the Live Revolution Parkdale Funk vol. 1
10 Parlour Steps The Hidden Names

Transparent Underground Orbit

Something new for the Newest Year

You're only as good as your last show, and January first was as good as it has yet to get.
Everymusic is my specialty, and aside from a vintage Stevie Wonder vinyl that sent the stylus aslide, every song was one that rose to the occasion, the inception of the year that calls itself a '10'.
No guests, that's understandable, post-party coma strikes most musicians on the first day, but a mix of Otis and Carla's New Year's Resolution and a Tribute to a King brought the first call in, "Man you don't know what you just did for me". Developing through a smoove soul set to a rock climb at noon (Dinosaur Jr. broke my hangover-friendly pledge with Farm's jagged thunder), followed by a sensitive tour of on-scene singer songwriters, Laura Nyro's And When I Die live, and a reading of Charles Simic's Mystic Life over Jewels and Binoculars' Fourth Time Around,
I got my balance of touchin and scorchin. A last minute reggae ride, prompted by a New Year's greeting from dj Chocolate (CKLN Mondays 2:30-5) ended with 4 Hero's Twelve Tribes and one more trip round the black ice with Stevie Wonder's A Place In The Sun.
The upcoming weeks hold a wealth of promise so lock me up on the Favorites and check back when you next need to format your Orbit.