Mind the gap

Posted on: 6th October, 2014

Category: Arts & Entertainment

Contributor: West Cork People

By Mark Holland, Hunky Dory Music Shop, Spillers Lane, Clonakilty

There is no point eating on a full stomach. Hunger being the best sauce, a healthy appetite makes a freshly caught mackerel taste like it must have been stolen from the Gods. Remember that sandwich you had on the beach after a swim?

Likewise you need silence to hear music, to really hear the music. Sometimes, in well-crafted music, you can hear the silence in the music, the notes or beats that have been left out. Prepared for, but then only implied, for you to fill in yourself. It’s joy, internally, sub-consciously involving you in the composition of the piece. Very confident composers like Einaudi (if you haven’t heard him then treat yourself) build a sequence but seem to leave it unfinished for the listener to resolve for themselves in their own way, which can make it so satisfying. His music was used in the French film ‘Untouchables’, which if you haven’t already seen then treat yourself again!

The opposite approach to this is the ‘wall of noise’ technique, as espoused by such as My Bloody Valentine, and used very effectively by Cork band Elastic Sleep. Here you need to tune in to the sound to hear the melody and complex harmonies underneath. But, as above, when you do hear them it’s like you have discovered something secret, special, that not everyone will get. The wall of noise is much more reflective of the post industrial age in which we live, where there is never pure silence, there is always something whirring in the background.

Context is a factor in what can make music sound good or not, Heavy Metal doesn’t enhance the whole fine dining experience but conversely a nice meal can make a previously disregarded chanteuse sound like an angel to you. Environment is another factor; Bono, justifying himself to Dave Fanning on the radio, made the point that big 1970s American stadium rock sounded great in big 1970s American cars, as does Hip Hop today. And time of day is important; sometimes music that is almost perfect late in the evening can leave you stone cold in the light of day.

But you can’t hear anything without silences in between. You need a break, you need a gap, you need a rest.  Not just emotionally, but physically as well, your ears get exhausted. That’s why we keep turning it up to make it sound better, that’s when your poor little fla-ed out ears need a rest. They can hear perfectly well at low volume but now they are tired.

And that’s what I think is wrong with MP3 players, they go anonymously on and on through endless piles of unzipped audio files that, by the end of the day, can leave you feeling worn out.

Silence is golden, it doesn’t have to be passive, make space for your own little self, and at the end of it decide what you want to listen to and enjoy.

Coincidentally, The Script has just released its new album (September 12) ‘No Sound Without Silence’.

Hunky Dory stocks a huge range of instruments, accessories, CDs and vinyl. Contact Mark on 023 8834982 or pop in to have a listen.

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Bandon Walled Town Festival in looking for new ideas!
Would you like to get involved in the 2018 Festival?If you yourself would like to be involved in big or small way
email bandonwalledtown@gmail.com
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11th October, 2017  ·  

Submarines, American Sailors, and the Underwater War in Irish Waters, 1917-1918
by Dr John Borgonovo in The Parish Centre, Clonakilty
on Thursday Oct 26 2017 at 8.30 pm

In 1917, unrestricted submarine warfare by German U-boats brought the United States into WWI and created a crisis in Britain. To defeat the submarine menace, an American naval fleet was dispatched to County Cork, bringing about 10,000 sailors with it. This talk will explain the circumstances of this extraordinary event, and how Cork residents dealt with their unexpected American guests.

Dr John Borgonovo is a lecturer in the School of History at UCC. His publications include Spies, Informers, and the 'Anti-Sinn Féin' Society: The Intelligence War in Cork City, 1920-1921; The Dynamics of War and Revolution: Cork City, 1916-1918; Exercising a close vigilance over their daughters: Cork women, American sailors, and Catholic vigilantes, 1917-18; Something in the Nature of a Massacre: The Bandon Valley Killings Revisited (with Andy Bielenberg). His latest publication (with co-authors John Crowley, Donal Ó Drisceoil and Mike Murphy) is the highly acclaimed and magnificient Atlas of the Irish Revolution. In July of this year, he organised a very successful conference on Winning the Western Approaches - Unrestricted Submarine Warfare and the US Navy in Ireland 1917-1918.
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11th October, 2017  ·  

Apple Juicing Day in Clonakilty next Sunday Sept 30th. All welcome to bring their apples from 2-6pm to the Clonakilty Community Garden (on entrance road to Clonakilty Lodge).

Building on the success of its inaugural 2016 event, local voluntary environmental organisation Sustainable Clonakilty invites people to bring along their apples and press them to extract their own juice to take home, using the group's Apple Press.

Volunteers will be at hand to assist in the procedure. Bring along your apples washed; clean containers to freeze your juice (milk/juice bottles or cartons, plastic bottles with caps); clean, sterilised glass bottles to pasteurise with swing caps or suitable for 26 mm diameter metal cap.

A limited number of new 3 litres juice bags that are suitable for freezing and pasteurising, can be purchased for a nominal fee on the day also.

This is a free community event and donations will be welcome to cover costs.

For further information, please contact Xavier at xavierdubuisson@gmail.com or text at 086/0476124.
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26th September, 2017  ·  

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