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Mogwai – Hound of Winter (2011)

Where the line blurs between glib, pretentious self-absorption and genuine inspiration I have not figured out as yet in the two and a half years of maintaining this space. The quoted paragraph below is from James Joyce‘s short story The Dead from his collection The Dubliners published 98 years ago, in 1914.

I have not read the story nor I have I ever read any Joyce so as a trademarked Irishman, I am a cultural disgrace, a fibber, a chancer, a thief, a blaggard, a deceiver and a whore.  And I have yet to see expratriate Hollywood director John Huston‘s 1987 film of said story or the 1999 Broadway Musical version starring Christopher Walken or indeed, the 2010 low-budget zombie film of the same name.

Despite having lived around the corner or near the James Joyce Tower & Museum aka Martello Tower in Sandycove, County Dublin, a setting featured in Joyce’s Modernist Avant Garde masterpiece of the 20th Century Ulysses and where Joyce himself spent several nights, my philistine eyes have yet to fix their gaze on a single letter, syllable, verb, noun of the books supposedly experimental prose style. I am a fibber, a charlatan, a bleedin liar and a phony.

Place  a stark, whispery Scots led rock lament with a poetic, evocative scene of wintry Irish ,melancholia and a recipe is conjured from the arses of angels.

“A few light taps upon the pane made him turn to the window. It had begun to snow again. He watched sleepily the flakes, silver and dark, falling obliquely against the lamplight. The time had come for him to set out on his journey westward. Yes, the newspapers were right: snow was general all over Ireland. It was falling on every part of the dark central plain, on the treeless hills, falling softly upon the Bog of Allen and, farther westward, softly falling into the dark mutinous Shannon waves. It was falling, too, upon every part of the lonely churchyard on the hill where Michael Furey lay buried. It lay thickly drifted on the crooked crosses and headstones, on the spears of the little gate, on the barren thorns. His soul swooned slowly as he heard the snow falling faintly through the universe and faintly falling, like the descent of their last end, upon all the living and the dead.” –