Tuesday, July 18, 2006

Henry Flynt-“Purified by fire”. [1981] 256 kbps; Henry Flynt and the Insurrections – “I don’t wanna”; [1966] @192 kbps-Heidegger as a Hillbilly

Ok this is a tuff one… Henry Flynt: philosopher, art activist, instigator… Musician.

Born in 1940 in Greensboro, North Carolina, this man got the best of 2 worlds: as an academic/artist he was member of Fluxus -art movement noted for the blending of different artistic disciplines, primarily visual art but also music and literature-, philosopher, friend of La Monte Young, Yoko Ono & John Cale -among other-, critic of modern conceptions about art and reality. As a North Carolina native/musician he was deeply interested in his musical roots plus an interest with non-conventional musical structures.

I'd like you to get an idea of this character’s uniqueness with the following story: Someday Velvet Underground’s John Cale got sick, so he asked Flynt -who’s mutual friend was LaMonte Young- to replace him as fiddler for a while. Cale’s request was accurate -Flynt wasn’t only a violin player but a connoisseur of VU droney violin structures- well, the day came when Henry meets Lou for an update about the band… quoting Flynt’s own words:

“Reed taught me their repertoire in about five minutes, because basically he just wanted me to be in the right key. At one point I got in a fight with him onstage because I was playing a very hillbilly-influenced style on the violin and that upset him very much. He wanted a very sophisticated sound; he didn’t want rural references in what was supposed to be this very decadent S&M image that they were projecting.”

The story didn’t end here, Flynt play with them for a while (“play” is a nice word that could be changed for “fight”, hehehe), and when the situation became hard, the band resolved that instead of gave him money as payment, they payed him with some guitar lessons by Reed Himself.

Now the lp’s:

Henry Flynt and the Insurrections-“I don’t Wanna”
Could be Flynt 60’s early “garage rock band”, but believe me, this aint a “garage rock band” as the traditional sense implies, don’t expect “We the People”, or “the Troggs” or Even “the Monks”. As usual, quoting my friends at Aquarius records: “…with The Insurrections (with Walter de Maria on drums, later famous for his Lightning Field sculpture in the New Mexican desert) Flynt plays guitar instead of fiddle. It's weird country bluesy drone protest rock as only an academic hillbilly Fluxus artist could conceive. The Velvets meet a jug band at an acid test? Not quite, but close.”

Henry Flynt- “Purified by Fire”
Again quoting Aquarius:
"Purified By Fire is much like a sequel to the much-loved Flynt album C-Tune. Like that album, Purified By Fire features Cathrine Christer Hennix on tamboura and Henry Flynt on amplified fiddle. Over the steady metallic drone of Hennix's tamboura Flynt weaves together Hindustani and Appalachian modes in a 40-minute improvisation. At the risk of over using a tired homily these really are two great tastes that taste great together. Bringing together the modal droniness of Appalachian folk music and classical Indian music in a completely unpretentious way"

Well Kids it’s time to know if you love or hate Mr. Flynt I’m certainly among the first ones, let me know which group you belongs.

Keep Listening!

Link in the comments

Henry Flynt & the Insurrections-go down
Henry Flynt & the Insurrections-jumping


Algarnas said...

Here are the links

Henry Flynt and The Insurrections-“I Don’t Wanna”

Henry Flynt-“Purified by the fire”

Anonymous said...

bom.i certainly love h, flynt especially with the insurrections ,whatever that means.as a player in this musical phenomena i think he´s one true innovator.julian copes introduction on head heritage is quite interesting.

Anonymous said...

fabulous posts, both of them--I think there may be some album jpegs in the purified folder that go with another album ?

Algarnas said...

Glad you like it!!

Certainly Cope's intro is essential , I used it myself for this review. I check and all the jpegs on purified seems to be from that lp.

Algarnas said...

You are right, all the jpegs with the face of a woman are not from "purified" thanks

Anonymous said...

Well this is interesting - I thought from the description that I'd prefer the Insurrections but here I am liking purified by fire. Both are great - thanks. Has he also done some sound collage stuff, by chance?

Algarnas said...

It's nice to see Flynt's enthusiasts! I don't remember a properly "sound collage" by Flynt, but remember that he was member of Fluxus, and most important Friend of George Maciunas, who once claims: "We have the idea of indeterminacy and simultaneity and concretism and noise coming from Futurism, like Futurist music of Russolo. Then we have the idea of Ready-made and concept art coming from Marcel Duchamp. Okay, we have the idea of collage and concretism coming from Dadaists... They all end up with John Cage with his prepared piano, which is really a collage of sounds"...

So I think all of ther musical creations -Including Flynt's- were collages in a Bigger sense.

Pls. if u got suggestions for future posts drop them. see ya.

Anonymous said...

I must be thinking of Flynt's 'hillbilly tape music' - but I may be getting it confused with something else entirely.

yd said...

Could you please re-upload those records (especially "I Don't Wanna")? They are really hard-to-find.

Rui Carvalho said...


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