Today I went to another AV10 festival event pairing legendary graphic novelist Alan Moore with Stephen O'Malley from Sunn O))), Thorr's Hammer, Burning Witch, The Lotus Eaters, KTL, Khanate, Stephen O'Malley (solo), Gravetemple, Ginnungagap, Aethenor, Teeth Of Lions Rule The Divine and Fungal Hex. Among other things.
Saturday, 13 March 2010
"Alan Moore will write and perform a new text responding to the energy of the two paintings: John Martin’s infamous The Destruction of Sodom and Gomorrah (1852) and a key painting by JMW Turner from the Tate Collection. Stephen O’Malley will create a new ambient soundscape, sonically melting in the radiance of the paintings."
It was heavy stuff and compared the paintings with the Romans coming to the North East among other things. Looking at the paintings it's easy to see similarities but Moore really linked them together. He was leaning over a lectern and spitting the words out with much gravitas. He sounded like he was at least 500 years old. He also looked like he was at least 500 years old. I was too scared to ask him to sign my League Of Extraordinary Gentlemen DVD*. I could have been killed.
Stephen O'Malley expertly soundtracked the proceedings with two half stacks and a lot of pedals. What looked like him stretching his guitar strap produced some ominous creaking noises. The poem was broken up by some loud heavy riffing which did a lot to justify the large amps. We were about two metres away from him sitting on the floor having come in just about last. On the conclusion of the spoken word O'Malley leaned his guitar against a speaker cab and went over towards the door, letting long loops (seemingly created earlier while he was doing everything else) ring out. It was like the instrument was playing itself. Everyone was left staring at the amps and you could feel that a connection between the paintings and the living artists in the room had been made. Awe inspiring stuff!
*I would never do such a thing