Music into words

This evening, I listened for the first time to a piece of music called Realms by Adam Wimbush (who composed a brilliant piece for the Bird King recently). Whilst listening, I tweeted the words and images that Adam’s evocative piece put in my head. The exercise was like automatic writing, in that it was spontaneous and I had no opportunity to correct what I was writing as I went.

Below are the tweets, amalgamated and given headings (corresponding to the titles of the four tracks that comprise Realms) but otherwise unedited. Make of them what you will.

Realms can be downloaded FREE here.


Realm A (Rococo)

A silence, an almost nothing. Something moving, watery, deep, growing.

Then rains and something rasping. An electric falling, a collapse.

A small voice, plaintive, bird like, in the storm.

Hints of speech in yellow and black, nature’s danger colours.

Hammering hammering hammering in yellow and black, yellow and black.

Juddering fish.

Cut to an interior.

Your broken machines make milk, meat and faces. It’s close.

Can you hear the sea?

That nagging rhythm, sagging under the weight of water.

A beach – outside now – where the colours are gone. Metallic light on set sand.


Realm B (Under the re-plosion

A pause, a scene change.

The next realm is made of insects. They flutter & pullulate in my ear, in my hair, in my head.

Other things too, dropping from the sky. Machines or creatures.

I feel as if I’m being laughed at. The rhythm again, insistent, cold.

All the lines and graphs here look like words, a forgotten tongue. Peering closer, wasps in my ear.

An aluminium sheet covers a corpse.

A hive of industry, a nerve centre, a nervous centre of electrical buzzing.

Buzz buzz, metal wasps.


Realm C (The Permeated Anomaly)

Another breather. Another scene change.

The third realm seeps in like bad hypnosis, like a torrent, like light.

I can feel the wings of the mechanical birds as they flutter blindly across my forehead.

A voice chases them.

What are you saying?


Is that a gun? Why this furious activity?

Searchlights melt yellowing faces.

Then we’re processed. Their voices are indifferent. Orders, observations, conclusions.

Red light along the yellow and black lines.

What at first I took for a dialogue isn’t. Two hemispheres of one silicon brain exchange bursts of information.

Is this me thinking or you?

Finally we’re taken somewhere else. Units beep.

It grows dark.


Realm D (In Loquaciousness Lay Insanity)

One more realm. Under the waves, morse code.

People walk by, trying not to look at the chirping tangled angular shape hovering above us.

On the horizon, the sea is being hoovered up.

The chirp is not a message. Don’t listen: it will drive you mad.

The sea is gone. Look up: the sky is a mirror.

You look like an android.

Still that sense of being laughed at. The light goes again and the textures change underfoot.

Sonic beacons or will-o-wisps?

The sensation of sinking, very slowly. The hovering creature or contraption or phantom or god is still there, invisible but felt.

Being sucked into it, engulfed by it. Lunatic loops.

The brain of god is a cloud of insects.

Cold cooperation, metallic harmony, glazed eyes.

In the brain of god there is something like a thought or an idea or something trying to speak but unable.

Everything gets greyer, weaker.

At the end, just a beach, a disappearing cloud.

And a maggot on the grey sand.


All texts on this site are the copyright of James Knight. All rights reserved.

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