Sunday, October 17, 2010

Sounds Like Lipstick Traces

Greil Marcus' book Lipstick Traces: A Secret History of the 20th Century has long been a touchstone for many sessions of intense, questing and often drunken sessions of intellectual debate. The book is an obsessive examination of the birth of punk rock, traveling on the wings of philosophy, history, conjecture and copious research to visit parallel movements of cultural rebellion ranging from Dadaism to French Situationism to Anabaptism.

In addition to its scholarly breadth, the cult book also makes copious musical references which provide a scorching backbeat to the fiery energy of its obsessions. The bloggers over at Lucky Psychic have unearthed a soundtrack to the book released by Rough Trade in the UK back in 1993.

It's a smart and powerful collection of music that takes you a 60-minute journey from The Slits "A Boring Life" through the 1948 recording of The Orioles "It's Too Soon To Know," past a wild recreation of "L'amiral cherche une maison à louer," composed by Tristan Tzara in 1916 and performed at the Cabaret Voltaire, past an utterly unexpected reading by Marie Osmond of a Dada sound poem by Hugo Ball and back to "Boredom" by the Buzzcocks. It's terrific played alongside the book, but it also stands on its own as an awesome mix tape that presents familiar punk bands in a way that makes them fresh again by placing them in a context of original, primal alienation.

Download the whole thing here. You can also download the original record sleeve with quotes from Greil Marcus, and liner notes by Jon Savage. Good stuff.


Mark said...

Would love to hear this, but the link to the download isn't working.

Gurldoggie said...

Oops. Sorry 'bout that. Try it now.