Saturday, 1 November 2014

The Incredible String Band - Be Glad For the Song Has No Ending

It would seem appropriate to usher November in with the autumnal melancholic strangeness of the Incredible String Band, via a suitably idiosyncratic documentary called Be Glad For the Song Has No Ending.

A first reading of The Incredible String Band would lead to the conclusion that they embody every cliché of psychedelic-folk-world music-lentil inflected-commune living-naïve mystic hippydom. This film may not dispel that thought. I, however, would concur with Rob Young’s view that more than any other band of the pivotal late 60’s/ early 70’s epoch they “captured that elemental essence of music as an intimate rite in the flickering light, imparting sacred mysteries to rapt ears in the sapphire deep of night … the music consumes everything thrown into it in a blaze of inspiration.” To me their sound and imagery conjure thoughts of damp leaf-litter strewn woodland walks, candle-lit fireside chattering, seasonal folkloric ritual and my meadow-bound childhood roamings; sonic transportation to place and time rememberings.

I know nothing of the films origins and do not feel compelled to find out; I would simply recommend that you watch it and, if you are not already a devotee, seek out their unique music. 

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