Photo by Ted Di Ottavio

Wednesday, March 3, 2010

As writ in The Wire

Are you familiar with The Wire, the rarefied British music magazine for adventurers in modern music? We have to admit we were not. Then Hal Willner called Janine to ask if Flutterbox "wanted a bit of an ego boost." Certainly. He proceeded to explain, by way of introduction, that the magazine is pretty much his bible, but warned that to get into it is a "deeply humbling experience" since they write exclusively about music "we know nothing about."

Turns out that on page 8o of the March issue, there's an informed and entirely enthusiastic review of the Tuli Kupferberg benefit show at St. Ann's Warehouse in January. In the last paragraph of Byron Coley's review, Hal continued, it says,

"The vocal/bass duo Flutterbox did a JAWDROPPINGLY GORGEOUS rendition of Morning Morning

"Could you repeat that?" Janine said, same as Neill said when he heard (adding, "Am I dreaming this?").

Days later, while Janine was out in Vancouver for the Willner Olympics, Hal showed her the actual print issue (just procured this week in New York at Other Music and not yet online). She told a few of the other players about The Wire mention, including the Glaswegian amazer, Alasdair Roberts, who is on the cover. The routine response was little short of astonishment – not that anyone would say our music is jaw-droppingly gorgeous, because it is, but because The Wire said so. Apparently, The Wire doesn't exactly favor a gushing tone. This rapturous squib is a very big deal. Thank you, People of The Wire! We will never forget that the British don't hyphenate "jaw-dropping."

Neill always says, when asked why we play so quietly (so much of the time), "I like to be able to hear the sound of their jaws dropping." Byron Coley of The Wire has ears good enough to hear it too. Ed Sanders said to Janine that night, "We always knew that was our `beautiful' song, but I never heard it really be beautiful before!"

Richard Gehr, over at The Village Voice, went with "luminous."