LUCY VAN #4: The Clouds 2

Artwork by Kitty Chrystal

Put simply, apropos of nothing I thought of a man.



And then I changed the radio station.


Sorry, Raskolnikov! wherever you are!



it struck me that my thinking had been all wrong. I stood there at the show, a scary couple of decades later: it’s actually very strange that this



lots of dissonances based around 4ths, which seem borrowed from medieval and early modern music. Lots of breakdowns into 6/8 or 3/4 time. Very tight arrangements based around weirdo chord changes. A shitload of attitude.


The right attitude’ drummer, smiling his way through blissed-out fills. Jodi and Trish swinging their guitar and bass like giant schlongs, so dapper and swagger without being butch, virile rather than sexy


I’m a bitter, twisted soul

But they don’t understand


And the only reason this matters


this virtual copy of the past (and incidentally, Jodi looks exactly as she looked when I saw her play in 1996)


I was able to move from nostalgia to time travel. It was like breaking a physical law, or a universal taboo. After intermission I passed a middle-aged couple engaged in an ersatz waltz; I presume they’d seen the band when they met in the previous century; it hovered around them as they smiled into each other’s long grey hair. They were remembering hearing it all the first time, while hearing it exactly as it was the first time. ‘This shouldn’t be allowed’ I thought to myself. Memory is obscene. It should remain private, obscured. As I stood there during the sets, refusing to finish my Carlton draught, the waves of pleasure I felt during certain chord changes and bridge distortion reminded me that I was no different from this waltzing couple, forgetting the horizon to wallow in the shallows of memory.


Post script: Neither Raph’s cousin nor I could remember the fourth person on stage that night, a tall man shredding away between Jodi and Trish whom they called Dave. Dave? Who the fuck was Dave? The lovely thing about memory is that it omits what’s not necessary. And the trouble with time travel is that it’s too accurate.