We’re pleased to premiere a collection of tracks from the upcoming release of Waywords and Meansigns, an international project setting James Joyce’s Finnegans Wake to music.
Written in idiosyncratic dream-like language, Finnegans Wake may well be the world’s most psychedelic book. Terence McKenna said the book is “as close to LSD on the page as you can get.”
Compiling over 100 musicians, readers and artists from 15 countries for their May 4th, 2017 release, Waywords and Meansigns will undoubtedly alter your consciousness, melting minds across the musical multiverse. Our premiere of select tracks features an all-star cast of musicians, including Old Fiends, a collaboration between Jason Merritt (Whip, Timesbold), Kenneth Griffin (August Wells, Rollerskate Skinny), Jason Sebastian Russo (Mercury Rev, Hopewell), and Paul Dillon (Lotus Crown, Mercury Rev).
Jason Sebastian Russo described Old Fiends by saying, “We’re four old friends who long ago learned to work from a distance. Featuring two coasts, two Irish Americans, two Jason’s plus field recordings from the toxic Northwest industrial district of Portland, Oregon and the slums of Brooklyn.”
The second track is Little Sparta with readings by Sally Timms and Martin Billheimer. Both Sally Timms and Little Sparta bandmate Susie Honeyman are also members of the legendary punk collective the Mekons.
The third track is from Seattle’s Kinski, the heavy psych rockers signed to the Kill Rock Stars label. This recording also features a reading from Matthew Reid Schwartz’s mom.
Neil Campbell showcases his advanced mumbling techniques on the fourth track. According to The Wire, Neil Campbell “provided the map co-ordinates for much of what passed for a post-punk UK underground during most of the 80s and 90s.” This is Neil’s second release with Waywords and Meansigns, having recorded an entire chapter of Finnegans Wake in 2016.
The final track is from Switzerland-based composer and pianist John Wolf Brennan. Known for a range of work, including his rendition of Bach’s Well-Prepared Clavier as well as his work with the avant-garde jazz group Pago Libre, Brennan’s recording turns Joyce into a joyful Bohemian dance.