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Squarepusher Manifesto
 

offline Xanatos from New York City (United States) on 2002-07-25 19:40 [#00324392]
Points: 3316 Status: Moderator | Show recordbag



Credit goes to entstr from the planet-mu board who did an
OCR scan of the inside cover of his Do You Know Squarepusher
2xCD

entstr
"The "manifesto" is white type on black paper, written in
the first person. The reverse side has the lyrics to, I
believe, the second track, black type on white paper. Both
sides have the "new squarepusher" symbol subtly overlayed in
gloss.

The first-person way it is written is very direct, hence
people calling it a "manifesto". It probably won't be on the
actual release anywhere, as it was expounding on the
artistic / musical process (more so, a justification of
his), how music is perceived, absorbed, and processed, and
can be read as a pre-emptive rebuttal to his critics. It's
an interesting read - I think he's pretty clear on his
views."


 

offline Xanatos from New York City (United States) on 2002-07-25 19:41 [#00324394]
Points: 3316 Status: Moderator | Show recordbag



The Manifesto

Some people would say. in looking at my career, that it
betrays a confused musical standpoint; optimistically it is
termed unpredictable. more derisively it is said to be
self-cancelling, in that within the wide aesthetic range in
the work, one part contradicts and undermines another,
resulting in something akin to the mixing of all the
different paints on the palette. This is an important point
to realise: I take no refuge behind standpoints. This has
manifested itself as part of my fundamental creative
aspiration- to see across as opposed to seeing from. At
first, there needs to be the presence both of a view rooted
in inherited opinion, effectively treated as transparent and
assumed to be inherently correct, and a will to play with
that view, to endlessly distort it and to ultimately be
prepared to destroy it. A kind of simultaneous faith and
critical ingenuity are required as, without the latter one
is bound to a reverential repetition of received wisdom, and
without the former ones sparks quickly die away once the
entrenched standpoint is supposedly vanquished. To make a
lethal attack on, say a musical standpoint, that standpoint
must first be loved, understood and accommodated before it
can be assailed, and this problem is exemplified with much
youth culture that seeks to destroy its perceived
antithetical enemy simply by contradicting it. It is not
enough to behead your enemy, they must first be invited in
and made to feel welcome in order to be comprehensively
destroyed i.e. they must be in some way incorporated. This
process should seem familiar as it is the time honoured way
of dissipating polarised energy away from musical movements:
by making them popular. What I am doing is turning this
system on its head: instead of incorporating isolated views
into mainstream equivalents, for the sake of destroying
culture in the name of the corporation, I incorporate
isolated views into my standpoint, indeed to the point of
seemingly
cancelling out a coherent view for the sake of destroyin


 

offline Xanatos from New York City (United States) on 2002-07-25 19:41 [#00324395]
Points: 3316 Status: Moderator | Show recordbag



g culture in the name of the corporation, I incorporate
isolated views into my standpoint, indeed to the point of
seemingly
cancelling out a coherent view for the sake of destroying
culture in the name of individual In .this sense advocate
completely respect-less exploitation of all forms available,
as this is the only road that could possibly render an
individual immune to being dissolved into mainstream
castration, insofar as the music industry as it stands feeds
most happily on artists with discrete viewpoints:
identity-cults can only be effectively generated from one
dimensional personalities. Personal identity must be
entirely subjugated and rendered formless in order to have
any sort of freedom in our era. A common error is mistaking
contradiction or negation of a consensus view for freedom:
this leads to phenomena symbiotic with mainstream culture
and equally poisonous i.e. movements who identify themselves
exclusively with a cynical commentary on the mainstream.
This is a dustbin for so called artists: diametrically
opposed to the mainstream, they are still very much obliged
to march to its tune, or of course its inversion. Being
conscious of the fallacy in their claim of independence, the
views always deliberately remain self-contained, and just as
a surfeit of cultural control gives rise to overweight smug
cretins, an almost total absence of it gives rise to the
revolting snide dinginess of the eternally subjugated. The
lesson is that no punks have yet been punk enough -
rejecting and negating the mainstream just as quickly
becomes subsumed in its own poisonous cliches, (thus often
becoming eligible for mass production). It is essential for
any creator to want to negate and to reject, but this has to
be coupled with a consummate understanding of the phenomena
one seeks to reject. Otherwise, not understanding the
language of negation, the object of the negating will
misunderstands what is being shouted at it. and caries on
regardless. I have learned to see inside every musician?s
head because, in order


 

offline Xanatos from New York City (United States) on 2002-07-25 19:42 [#00324396]
Points: 3316 Status: Moderator | Show recordbag



to have any sort of freedom in our era. A common error is
mistaking contradiction or negation of a consensus view for
freedom: this leads to phenomena symbiotic with mainstream
culture and equally poisonous i.e. movements who identify
themselves exclusively with a cynical commentary on the
mainstream. This is a dustbin for so called artists:
diametrically opposed to the mainstream, they are still very
much obliged to march to its tune, or of course its
inversion. Being conscious of the fallacy in their claim of
independence, the views always deliberately remain
self-contained, and just as a surfeit of cultural control
gives rise to overweight smug cretins, an almost total
absence of it gives rise to the revolting snide dinginess of
the eternally subjugated. The lesson is that no punks have
yet been punk enough - rejecting and negating the mainstream
just as quickly becomes subsumed in its own poisonous
cliches, (thus often becoming eligible for mass production).
It is essential for any creator to want to negate and to
reject, but this has to be coupled with a consummate
understanding of the phenomena one seeks to reject.
Otherwise, not understanding the language of negation, the
object of the negating will misunderstands what is being
shouted at it. and caries on regardless. I have learned to
see inside every musician?s head because, in order to
prevent myself from being fully incorporated into any
musical ghetto, I have to incorporate every musical ghetto
into myself. I aspire to make music useless as a commodity
i.e. a prop for the identities and personalities of the
mindless: and if this is all that music constitutes in our
era, then to maximise every conceivable parameter until it
completely destroys itself.
(signed, Squarepusher)


 

offline Xanatos from New York City (United States) on 2002-07-25 19:46 [#00324398]
Points: 3316 Status: Moderator | Show recordbag



Me
This is the most amazing thing I have read by any musician,
as far as I can remember, so I really wanted to share it
with all you non-µtants who probably haven't seen it. I'm
going to read it again before I discuss it.


 

offline Ctrl Alt Del from Ft. Worth (United States) on 2002-07-25 19:52 [#00324400]
Points: 2190 Status: Lurker



i think you win the award for longest consecutive post.


 

offline Xanatos from New York City (United States) on 2002-07-25 19:56 [#00324401]
Points: 3316 Status: Moderator | Show recordbag



Correction: Ignore the third part, it should go from
the second part to this (otherwise you end up reading a big
chunk twice):

to prevent myself from being fully incorporated into any
musical ghetto, I have to incorporate every musical ghetto
into myself. I aspire to make music useless as a commodity
i.e. a prop for the identities and personalities of the
mindless: and if this is all that music constitutes in our
era, then to maximise every conceivable parameter until it
completely destroys itself. (signed, Squarepusher)


 

offline Xanatos from New York City (United States) on 2002-07-25 19:59 [#00324403]
Points: 3316 Status: Moderator | Show recordbag



Some of this makes about as much sense to me as the end of
"My Fucking Sound" (i.e. I have no fucking idea what is
going on). But a lot I really agree with.


 

offline surrounded from it won't be hard anymore to li on 2002-07-25 20:04 [#00324404]
Points: 3787 Status: Regular



i can't read that... my english is not good enough :-( By
the time i got to like the 8th sentence i was already lost
;-) And forgot what the previous 7 sentences said. Hopefully
a lengthy discussion will follow in this thread, so that in
the end i get some idea what Tom wanted to say with this :-)


 

offline thethirdball from Polly Pisspot (Canada) on 2002-07-25 20:18 [#00324405]
Points: 1629 Status: Lurker



Don't worry it's just a punch of pretentious babble that
doesn't do anything but lower my opinion of Squarepusher.
Why say these things? I don't care - just release music you
twat.

Just my 2 cents.


 

offline Clic on 2002-07-25 20:22 [#00324406]
Points: 5232 Status: Regular | Followup to thethirdball: #00324405



No.


 

offline Zeus from San Francisco (United States) on 2002-07-25 20:29 [#00324408]
Points: 14042 Status: Lurker



wow

im gonna have to read this several times before I can
respond....


 

offline pachi from yo momma (United States) on 2002-07-25 20:46 [#00324421]
Points: 8984 Status: Lurker



is there a link?


 

offline Clic on 2002-07-25 20:49 [#00324423]
Points: 5232 Status: Regular | Followup to pachi: #00324421



Just go to watmm.com and look in SP's news articles. It's
there.


 

offline pachi from yo momma (United States) on 2002-07-25 20:52 [#00324424]
Points: 8984 Status: Lurker | Followup to Clic: #00324423



thx


 

offline Darth manchu from Cambridge (United Kingdom) on 2002-07-25 21:36 [#00324445]
Points: 1897 Status: Regular



i am really looking forward to this release. That manifesto
is a bit good.


 

offline Xanatos from New York City (United States) on 2002-07-25 21:42 [#00324450]
Points: 3316 Status: Moderator | Show recordbag



here

Oh joyrex just put it up i see


 

offline urb from Trondheim (Norway) on 2002-07-25 22:22 [#00324494]
Points: 568 Status: Regular



Drivel.

A joke for sure.


 

offline grinningcat from london (United Kingdom) on 2002-07-25 22:58 [#00324517]
Points: 1073 Status: Lurker



can anyone translate this stuff??! He's either very clever
or just taking the piss.

But im serious, can someone please summarise what tom is on
about??!



 

offline urb from Trondheim (Norway) on 2002-07-25 23:06 [#00324521]
Points: 568 Status: Regular



dudes.. you can't be serious

"I have learned to see inside every musician's head"

"I have to incorporate every musical ghetto into myself."

I too want some muscial ghettos to incorporate into myself
so that I can learn to see into every musicians heads.


 

offline Xanatos from New York City (United States) on 2002-07-25 23:27 [#00324531]
Points: 3316 Status: Moderator | Show recordbag



Urb: That might be drivel but I understand this perfectly:

"I aspire to make music useless as a commodity
i.e. a prop for the identities and personalities of the
mindless: and if this is all that music constitutes in our
era, then to maximise every conceivable parameter until it
completely destroys itself. "

even if he is "taking the piss" he's writing some
interesting things.


 

offline Xanatos from New York City (United States) on 2002-07-25 23:28 [#00324532]
Points: 3316 Status: Moderator | Show recordbag



I don't know what action one would take, in aspiring to
create that, but I can understand feeling that way.


 

offline Xanatos from New York City (United States) on 2002-07-25 23:31 [#00324534]
Points: 3316 Status: Moderator | Show recordbag



Actually I agree, most of it is artsy overanalytical
shit but I think what he says about Mainstream and
Anti-Mainstream being the same thing is really interesting
and really well phrased. And I agree with thethirdball too,
just keep releasing music, it says alot more than any words
can (that's what music is all about imo.)


 

offline OK on 2002-07-25 23:32 [#00324535]
Points: 4790 Status: Regular



we all know that tom guy's suposed to be nuts anyway... so i
believe that thing written was sincere.


 

offline Xanatos from New York City (United States) on 2002-07-25 23:33 [#00324536]
Points: 3316 Status: Moderator | Show recordbag



Have you listened to his music? It's alot more insane than
that is. He writes text kind of like music lol


 

offline grinningcat from london (United Kingdom) on 2002-07-26 00:11 [#00324586]
Points: 1073 Status: Lurker



do u think he quatises his words?


 

offline grinningcat from london (United Kingdom) on 2002-07-26 00:11 [#00324588]
Points: 1073 Status: Lurker



i think its good he's actually bothered to rite a bit, its
better than that shite/empty 'go plastic' cover!


 

offline titsworth from Washington, DC (United States) on 2002-07-26 00:20 [#00324593]
Points: 14550 Status: Lurker



terrific read, really enjoyed and agreed with the points he
makes. essays are supposed to be analytical, if you're not
interested in deep analysis don't read one. also enjoyed the
comments on it at planet mu, quite an intellectual bunch
over there.


 

offline Xanatos from New York City (United States) on 2002-07-26 18:23 [#00326065]
Points: 3316 Status: Moderator | Show recordbag



Some parts are too much for me, but

"identity-cults can only be effectively generated from one
dimensional personalities. Personal identity must be
entirely subjugated and rendered formless in order to have
any sort of freedom in our era. A common error is mistaking

contradiction or negation of a consensus view for freedom:
this leads to phenomena symbiotic with mainstream culture
and equally poisonous i.e. movements who identify themselves

exclusively with a cynical commentary on the mainstream.
This is a dustbin for so called artists: diametrically
opposed to the mainstream, they are still very much obliged

to march to its tune, or of course its inversion"

does. And so do a lot of other parts. Urb: maybe you
should reread it to give it a chance? Maybe I can translate
some into simpler english for u? =)


 

offline MrTenzin from The Concrete Jungle (United States) on 2002-07-26 18:52 [#00326095]
Points: 1184 Status: Lurker



WOW i got that in the email from someone really nice... who
ever you are thanks.. and wow what a great manifesto!


 


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