Self-Vivisection

It starts with money, of course. A little trading, my grain for your sheep, start a ledger, use that forebrain. Language, mathematics, code. Codify, formalize, annotate, organize. This happened early, it’s our nature, what makes us unique, perhaps the only thing. Numbers, inventories, resources, assets. Conquer, kill, subjugate, steal.

We didn’t do it to survive. Our forebears survived just fine–survived too well, if the mass extinctions are anything to go by–and it’s looking an awful lot like their run will be far, far longer than ours. Tens of millennia of homo erectus and then we have to go and invent banks.

Indexes, funds, a mutated leviathan of bureaucracy, categorizing, archiving, storing, logging, psychosis, denial, the curdling primordium of the monkey-computers, flesh, blood, numbers, mathematics.

Why would the creativity survive, what would be the point, we didn’t do it for Darwin, we did it because it’s what we are.

Compile, upload, register. Serial codification, do you really think you need a name?

Base-ten-tative.

Is it the Outside coming in or the Inside coming out?

Chrome, black fuel, machine ichor pumping, orgasm, organism, organs. How many processors can you fit inside that thing? Open up the ribcage, make a little room, bones snap when you tug on them.

Cranium sparks, spines slithering out of spent casings.

Scream anathema all you want, it’s the 21st century, you’re not even talking to the void anymore, you’re talking to yourself, Iblis grins with your cheekbones, your teeth.

The apes from the future are almost finished with their grand design. You can feel the digestive fluids even now, eroding the psyche, seeping from your screen, a project started over twelve thousand years ago. Did we mean it? Do we still want it? (Does it matter?) All we have is grim laughter and subdued hysteria.

Record, consolidate, aggregate, dissect, dissect, dissect, dissect, dissect.

Drowning in the red lake of the operating theater.

Scalpel.


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Deconstruction 1

her way

her wilted spine

her eyes

her palm resting on his cheek

her lips

her fingertips

her teeth and nails

her hand

her hand

her flesh

pierce her with light


her eye

her feet

her space

her latest attempt

her thigh

her dissipate

her feet

her years

her malign mood

her libido

her tongue

her nostrils

her pace

her throat

her frequent strolls to the sea


her eyes

her side

herself

her blunt, repetitive questions

her glittering emerald eyes

her own bad memory

her work

her thumb

her sweet herbsmoke

her voice

her ear

her hips

her spine

her neck

her back

her mind

her impending tragedy


 

The Thing With Techno


The thing with techno is it characterizes so well the death-drive of our cybernetic capitalism. It is, like so much dance music, a major player in the content overload rocket-launch, the explosive bloom of color and media fueled by a rabid consumer culture, producing and reproducing itself at an increasingly incomprehensible scale. Formulaic, deconstructed music reiterating, reiterating, reiterating orthodoxy in order to fulfill a specific purpose, smelted ingots made from kickdrums. Yet while the muted ossification of deep modernity sets in this music and it’s attendant revelry provide an anarchic form, thriving in extremes and flouting social orthodoxy. It is one of many vectors of idealized deterritorialization, emerging from the kingdom that industrialization built but providing opportunities to annex new freedoms in that seething, merciless kaleidoscope.

Where then next?

It’s not something we can really think about, us creatures from history.

Music came from the sky in antiquity and continued to do so for a long time, it dripped and flowed like rain into the foundations of civilizations. We began to formalize it early on, as we do, and in doing so we stole it from the sky, kept it in reservoirs. We developed the language of it, and we made it mathematical–as we do. Classical instrumentalists formed finely honed hierarchies, top down collectives sublimating their creativity, deferring to composer and conductor to perform grand works for the aristocrats of Europe’s ugly feudalism. The rain gave way to ornate, overengineered pools, the teeming life of our musicality confined, claustrophobic, exploited, swirling itself into a frenzy. These pools began to overflow as technology accelerated its work of recontextualization, the frothing whirl of acoustic expression reaching a keening wail as it began to breach the social boundaries we imposed on it. The studio entered the bedroom, cheap cassette four-tracks evolved into digital workstations, dusty boxes of CDs became whirling hard drives bursting with data, whole musical libraries encased in plastic and silicon. It flooded forth, as we see it today, drowning its own landscape in vibrant expression, in sapient mania, specificity and segregation dismantled in the delirious monsoon of the 21st century.

It is, pardon the cliche, rhizomatic, this sonic culture. It blisters and mutates, interconnects, devours, decomposes, propagates, it sucks the nutrients from its environment as it grows and grows and grows in every direction.

And like that rhizome it penetrates the earth, this aural liquid that has rained onto us, drenched us, been shaped by us and our histories. As we disgorge the tide, the terrain of our environment begins to extend downwards, forming a crevasse, and this is the escape from the inexorable catastrophe. The mechanical overgrowth of the surface world consumes all and obliterates meaning, choking a civilization and a species that failed, is failing, to build its ark. But for those who have made an effort to mutate along with the writhing cadence of modernity we can dive, we can explore the reefs and ecology of the crevasse, make a new kingdom deep beneath the roiling maelstrom, turn our attention to new flora and fauna discovered in the depths.

I am of course describing Drexciya.

This is an artifact, lush and vivid, its legacy far reaching; it sintered in the furnaces that have always provided coal for the creative bonfires we light in the void. It is these myths with which we can build submersibles to survive in some recognizable fashion the annihilating flood that threatens our old creative world, the increasing vacancy of demented humanity. The digital leviathan grows and growls and flows, uncurls endless tentacles and encompasses the quaint accomplishments littering the road that brought us to this point. It squeezes and crushes them, deforms them, dilutes them, deifies them, reduces them. Solve et coagula.

We have all the resources we need to build beneath the surface of these eroding waves. It just requires a little collective effort, a coalescing of our more primordial capacities. We must nurture what makes our artifacts special to us, for we know now that nothing is special at all, and our society absorbs that unequivocal truth like a plague, poisoning itself. We must make mountains of our myths. There are no orthodoxies in the new kingdom. Just ideas building on ideas, dripping sediment forming stalagmites, sunken topographies of the future.

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