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Old Dec 05, 02
Celebrate or Suffer
Join Date: Nov 2001
SEAN! is a glorious beacon of lightSEAN! is a glorious beacon of lightSEAN! is a glorious beacon of lightSEAN! is a glorious beacon of lightSEAN! is a glorious beacon of lightSEAN! is a glorious beacon of lightSEAN! is a glorious beacon of light

holy shit man..i don't really like trance that much, but BT is an awesome producer, all his tracks are so tite, uplifting in only a semi cheesy way.

such a good producer..holy shit, theres so many different layers of sound to each track and they work so well together..fuck man, this is what all trance should be like.

im sooo high..hahah
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  #2 (permalink)  
Old Dec 05, 02
Join Date: Jan 2002
dkai is an unknown quantity at this point
I took this from xpander.nl ... sean cusick (sick dj/producer) wrote it. the guy may as well be the kingpin of menza .. anyways, if you have the attention span to get through the whole thing, he has some funny things to say about bt (and a lot of interesting things to say about everything else)


I have received quite a few emails from people since I started this column only one month ago and many of them wanted to know my opinions on why the scene seems to be dying. I’m not entirely sure but am confident that this is normal and how things usually go after a certain amount of time has passed. The pathetic battle cry that “Rock and Roll will never die” pretty much assured its death was not only imminent but closer than most people realized at the time. People will continue to dance. It is a perennial act and one that transcends both genres and “scenes”. I think many people are realizing that they don’t need to spend half a weeks pay at the door of a massive concert venue to go dancing. This I think is a good thing and opens opportunities for others. The era of the superstar dj definitely seems to be waning.

So this last weekend was my birthday and I partied pretty hard on a variety of stupid drugs that don’t mix very well together and washed it all down with vodka, xanax and beer. I had hoped to somehow put together an article that really explains why I think the scene is waning. Below is a farrago of the resulting drug and alcohol mish mash:

There must be large groups of mostly young people collectively and individually willing to destroy themselves physically and morally in a near self-sacrificial state for a musical scene to be dynamic and vibrant. To participate in something they can neither control nor understand, to give themselves over to it. Otherwise the music becomes an advanced form of auditory potpourri or musical incense and little else. The music must be able to ignite and fuel a fire in people's souls. Not just something to keep them warm when they can't sleep and are up late and feel a chill in the night. There must something lost or at least risked for anything to be gained. Where is the danger? Where is that one blinding flashing dark chance? Are there fans anymore, or is everyone now officially part of the “industry”? They go out to "network" in the scene and try to flaunt their guest list status to anyone who will listen and might be able to get them some drink tickets. They are walking status symbols but without the status. They’re like the city of Miami: all the pretense with none of the importance. The dance music scene has become a barely drunk Tupperware convention, an Amway recruit festival. Are there no young drug fiends? Or are they all only listening to The White Stripes and The Hives? Rock and Roll is still alive and well, I guess. So be it.

That the scene is so institutionalized is bothersome. It being melted down and tamed by people struggling their way up what is perceived to be a musical ladder doesn’t help anything either. It's not so much as the path has been blocked as that the trailhead has been hidden or obscured by greed, arrogance, superstition and fear. Within the progressive house community of America there is a feeling that everyone involved is part of a pyramid scheme and that when you "got in" has a direct correlation to where you are now and everyone must "pay their dues" etc., etc. This sort of drivel and dimwittery has created a feeling among so many producers, djs and artists that there is little sense in trying and the only way to the top is by appeasing the gods above you with your humble burnt offerings on cd-r. Listen; don't make records you think Sasha and Digweed might like. Make records so great they'll be embarrassed not to be playing them and wonder why they didn't know about it first.

Are people tired of dancing? I doubt it. Is ecstasy passé? Maybe, but I hope not.

Is the punk spirit dead? Or did it ever even really exist in this culture in the first place? Maybe DIY alone is an insufficient stance to maintain an entire subculture. Perhaps it was only a by-product of the times rather than an ethic formed by people truly disenchanted with things as they were/are. Where are the musical rebels? I find some people's music and posturing an affront to much that I value. That the world chases and applauds certain people brings me a fair amount of physical discomfort and spiritual uneasiness, it feels like I feel asleep with pennies in my mouth. Disturbing. This is because I love music though not because I hate idiots. My dissatisfaction with things as they are is a by-product of love not just the ranting of an angry disenchanted man. That’s an oversimplification I suppose. Listen to the music around you. In it I hope you might hear the residue of pain, desire, rage or confusion. I find these feelings to have some inherent beauty in them and I don't think I'm alone in this feeling. They are not the only feelings that matter, but without them what is left? Peace, Love and Crappuccino. These feelings alone are insufficient for me and I’m assuming they are for others as well.

Music and my love for it have brought me moments of unforgettable joy. Happiness so intense that there were moments that I contended with and accepted my own inevitable death, or so I had thought at the time. It might sound funny to admit that now but all of this gave me a more profound sense of life and living. "and time won't take my love away" -Black Box

Music is a powerful force, or it should be. So much music now sounds like the people who made it put about as much effort into it as they put into their answering machine messages. Sonic drivel, with little intent behind it. The best part about most tracks that I hear now is that they eventually end. Sure not all music is suppose to transport you to the far reaches of the musical galaxy or even cause you to slip down inside yourself to a dimension of your soul that you hardly even knew existed, one that cannot be shared, a personal place beyond the poisoned arrow smiles and barbed-wire hugs of our times. Not all music should produce the same or even similar effects. Some music is there only to make you shake your ass. Whatever keeps the little girls giggling and the panties wet in the bandstand.

There is a commonly held belief that words are poor vessels of meaning and are misleading by nature because the sound of the word has an indiscriminate relationship to its meaning. Words are little self contained miniature lies strung along by blind men weeping, wailing and moaning at the gates of the city in the night. It is not the fault of the words themselves but is a by-product of representation. The same is sometimes true for music. It can be used to elicit false emotions. Music can be a lie, falsified by people who know how to use it. Do you think Paul Van Dyk really believes in Angels? I hope so, he’ll need their help to answer for all that bad music he’s made. My idea of hell is pretty much summed up in that majestically awful track of his, white girls riding clouds. Music can be used to manipulate people who are privy and eager to "getting lost in the music" and others who simply feel that this is what they should be trying to imitate - holding their heads back in an advanced state of rapture, convulsing with each new triplet arpeggio that descends on them from the glorious dj booth of their local dying mega-club. I've heard people use this phrase (getting lost in the music) to describe the feeling that some music gives them. I've gotten lost in the music myself a few times and am no stranger to being systematically and ritualistically disoriented but I know that it was more than just accidentally falling between a kick drum and a conga loop and not being able to find my way out. There were hidden crevices and mysterious far-away fields inviting my attention, naked women singing on the rocks, calling my name… maybe it was just the e....

This scene is made strong and sustained by the efforts of individuals willing to give themselves over to an anonymous whole. Sure, to generate interest for most outsiders and even far too many "insiders" there may need to be what is perceived as "heroes". But ultimately that sense of the hero and the assumed “heroic” that goes along with it is what gives the scene part of its sense of both tragedy and identity. It is part of what makes many of us feel like it may be all over or at least waning... ...our heroes are fat and lost, they must be replaced to keep the village healthy and strong. The harvest is dying and the wolves have come down from the hills…

Any species ability to survive is based not on intelligence or strength but its ability to adapt. So says Darwin anyway. But adaptation alone will not insure survival. Dance culture is not exactly a “species”, but I think it’s an interesting way to look at what’s happening. Take it or leave it.

I fell in love with the anonymity of the entire culture and the force of the music and drug combination and a few other things that I can’t seem to remember any more. There was a club that I used to go to in 1989 in Orlando, Florida called the Beacham Theater. In the very early days of this club it was difficult to even really tell where the dj booth was at first or even whether or not there even really was a dj unless you spent a little bit of time looking. But there was a dj and his name was Kimball Collins and it wasn't long before most everybody in Orlando under the age of 25 knew who he was. The point is that this was no “flagship club” in a chain that was busy “branding” its way through the world of dance. It was just an old theater, a sound system and a bunch of drug crazed freaks. The disappearance of these type clubs has signaled the end of something vital. It is the death of anonymous escape. Clubs now are too busy trying to indoctrinate you to worry much about letting you do what you probably came there for in the first place. At least gay clubs haven’t forgotten this very important part of why people go out. “Some dance to remember some dance to forget”… Is there a decline in gay clubbing? I doubt it.

So, if heroes are what people require then where are they? Where are the new musical heroes? Certainly things cannot go on much longer with the bunch of aging and fat homeowners and investment bankers that we have now. Is there no possible return to anonymity? Will the world of dance music eventually be overrun with Steve Lawler's team of beady-eyed and salivating press agents, or perhaps it will be finally annihilated in the terminal marathon battle of the Titan DJ's? I can't help but feel that the majority of dj's that I've met get into it for reasons that differ from mine. Fair enough, I would hope that's the case. I don’t know Steve Lawler or his press agents well enough to hate them, I’m just using him as an example and he could probably use the free press. A legion of very connected and high speed morons will misunderstand my point and vehemently jump to his defense on any chat board that will have them. Watch…

So, we were talking about the scene:

We came together in the middle of the night and drank the wine and banged on the drums and gave ourselves over to the dark mysterious forces and powerful unknown impulses that lurked within us, the apparitions that haunted us and the places we loved and shared. What are we left with? Winter Music Conference and a top 100 dj poll…. Listen, everybody. Please. Please. Please… DJ’ing is not a sport nor is it politics. Don’t vote in these ridiculous things. It’s bad enough that the world of dance music is divided up into what may as well be described as tiny power hungry political factions. Don’t fuel that type of behavior by encouraging it with a popularity contest. And if you do, for the Love of God, please don’t try to tell me that Tiesto is a great DJ. I’ve heard him. He is truly the lowest common dominator and he plays music for people whose nervous systems no longer function properly. Every moment is one designed to shock you into sensation, to forcibly remind you that you’re still alive. For a laugh go to his website and read his embarrassing swill. www.tiesto.com “We think it can’t get any better than this”. Of course you do…Of course you do…Go, Go Trancezilla.

Where is the real red wine we were promised?

There are so many producers and djs that I either know or know of that have such a 'take it or leave it' attitude. In fact it has become quite trendy to possess a world-weary and detached stance towards even the music that you make or play. Perhaps it has always been this way and I am being naive, I don't know. I do know that for anything of real value to occur enthusiasm must overcome indifference. Warhol and his ilk be damned, enthusiasm is a key to expression. But I sense very little genuine interest or enthusiasm any more. It is the inevitable triumph of industry over inspiration. Excitement has given way to hype. Hype is the successful management of disproportion, it exists somewhere between cultural achievement and fantasy. It's the ability to project a manufactured idea of someone onto a willing audience. Dj culture could not exist in its current state without it but things are changing quickly and the hype is evaporating.

Speaking of hype. Somebody has told me recently that BT is now claiming he invented trance and "stutters". Has he never heard of the KLF? They did both before him. He is without doubt the biggest and blondest dried up tit this community is forced to suffer. He is a shining example of somebody who claims to be in it “for the music”. I question his motives and his music, but not his stuttering.

BT has invented his own mythology and very little else. Because he is repeating this completely ridiculous claim people will begin to repeat it and believe it. If nothing is done about it then it will become a commonly held belief and few will go through the trouble of defending the truth, if there actually is any left worth defending. Can you even imagine making that kind of claim with "trance" in its current state? It would be like claiming to have invented anthrax on the 6'oclock news. Gushing, blushing and bobbing as a reporter thrusts a microphone into his face. Bouncing around like a frat nerd jacked up on a spoonful of fame and geek steroids, agreeing with everything the reporter says and then saying, "Dude, I invented trance. I’m a pop tart phenomenon.” Tell everyone. I think BT and Jesse Saunders should be forced to fight to the death with pizza cutters and the winner can claim they invented skittles.

And if BT invented trance then I invented misspelling and diarrhea. I send BT an open invitation to an electronic history lesson anytime he wants. I would be happy to prove him wrong. We'll start with a record called, "What Time is Love" (Original Mix). Or maybe Force Legato, “System” (V 1.0). He's like a kid that stays an extra hour at school to clean the chalkboard and tells the teacher he can't wait until the class has moved on to the next chapter. He’s brown nosing his own fans to make them feel like they’re in touch with something that matters: his ever lengthening and wooden nose. Pathetic. He didn’t invent stuttering, he invented shamelessness.

Maybe BT will finally make it onto the cover of Rolling Stone magazine and the music world at large will be forced to acknowledge that dance is dead, that it fizzled out naked, gasping and gurgling. Covered in its own semen. Found in a hotel room drowned in puke like all great drum machines. BT will be fingering his butt-hole on the cover claiming that he invented masturbation.

I know I promised I would leave this issue alone but since the interview I did with xpander and the first column I did I’ve been getting loads of emails from people who all have their own little stories to tell about him. I have a weakness for it, I guess. I heard also that BT is slamming Paul Oakenfold now. I'm not the one who would normally run to Paul Oakenfold's defense but if I was forced to choose sides…. No, wait a minute. Stop it. I would scrape and gouge my own eyes out with a greasy chicken’s ass-bone before giving a vote of confidence to either of those fuckwits.

Okay, enough for now. Please forward all funny BT stories and hate mail to: q6@xpander.nl

Well, I forget where I was. The scene was dying, I think. Or is it? I don’t know. Maybe this is just a transitional phase. Well, I’ll try to get back to this subject later if it seems like I get any email that would warrant any further talk about it. Somebody please give me a reason to believe I’m wrong about all of this. Next month I hope to take back some of what I said in the xpander interview I did a few months ago. It was about bootlegging. I was probably wrong.

Also, just to clarify a few other minor details that have come up recently: there is another Sean Cusick who writes about John Holmes’s cock at a website at www.tufts.edu. This is not me. There is a dance producer from around Baltimore called Shaun Cusick (or Shawn, not sure) who sometimes uses the moniker "Q", this also is not me. Someone forwarded me a link to the Global Underground chat boards and somebody on there referred to me as "racist". This is also not me.

Thanks to everybody who sent me material to listen to, especially David Piekoz whose album “narrativestructurez” is worth hunting out and listening to. I had hoped to do a review of it as part of this column but am lazy and cannot be depended on for anything. It is not dance music but is great to have around the house when coming down from drugs or otherwise. One of the tracks really reminds me of Throbbing Gristle. Pretty cool stuff. Anybody who has a full albums worth of material and would like to send it to me for possible review in my column please email me and I will give you a mailing address to send it to.

More on the death of the dance scene later. I’m exhausted with all the things I probably shouldn’t be saying.

Bling Bling,

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