Sunday, January 6, 2008

White Wire Man

I had an iPod for my birthday last year (a month ago.) This has little device been a revelation in many ways. I haven't even listened to music on headphones for a long time - probably since my Dad bought a pair for the family stereogram in 1974. (These 'cans' had a brass jack plug that weighed more than the iPod, and one couldn't wander more than a few feet whilst wearing them, listening to 'Switched on Bach' for its freaky stereo effects...)

Now I'm carrying an entire record-collection's worth of stuff, coming to terms with the weirdness of a subjective mobile soundtrack, the random selections of the Electric DJ Imp that operates the 'Shuffle' selection, delivering strange aural overlays to my movements, eg

'I See a Darkness' by Johnny Cash, while walking through a crowd of laughing kids outside the local Primary school;

'I am the Strange Hero of Hunger', a poem by Billy Childish, in the paper goods section of Tesco;

'Space Monkey' by Patti Smith, watching the clouds break open into light above the strangely hunched and provisional-looking buildings of Ormskirk.

I suppose I could seize control back from the Shuffle Imp, construct playlists to map precise moods - 'Leave the Capitol' as we roll out of Euston, 'Hit the North Pt 1' when we pass Stafford - but maybe I'll just let the randomness play on.

No comments: