Quote of the week

Johnson used to at least be able to give a passable imitation of being Boris Johnson. Now he can’t even manage that. The gags and the mannerisms that used to be his calling card, now just fall flat. A one-trick pony whose one trick everyone knows. The surface has been stripped bare to reveal a core of molten need. Someone who craves attention and fears he wouldn’t exist without it. Someone whose narcissism leaves him devoid of empathy. Incapable of either giving or receiving love.

John Crace
The Guardian
20 June 2010

Phillip Glass was part of a whole generation of composers – Terry Riley, Steve Reich, John Adams – who became tired of western classical music’s incessant need to “go somewhere”. They found themselves attracted to non-western forms that resolutely refused to go anywhere at all, settling into a rhythm, or a groove, or a drone that had its own distinctive effect on the listener. Their subsequent work has been informed by their respective epiphanies, and they are among the most popular of all contemporary composers. We need to adopt the same approach to the vuvuzela. Its defiant monotone is a reminder that music does not need to go anywhere to make a statement. Its puffed-cheek player announces to the world: “We are here. The World Cup is here. Who would have thought it? Don’t forget it. Not even for one second.” It is a joyous, life-affirming sound, of a nation entranced in pride and celebration, and expressing it through its own culture. – Peter Aspden, arguing in that radical, politically correct, newspaper, the Financial Times, that opposition to the Vuvuzela is a cut and dried case of cultural imperialism.

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