Dominic Bevan Wyndham Lewis Enemy Speaks

Enemy Speaks
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Item:  LTMR 2411
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CD Details

  • Released: April 2, 2007
  • Label: Ltm

Tracks:

  • 1.When John Bull Laughs
  • 2.End of Enemy Interlude
  • 3.Song of the Militant Romance
  • 4.If So the Man You Are
  • 5.Crisis of Thought
  • 6.Essential Purposes of Art
  • 7.Apes of God [Extract]
  • 8.Sympathy

Product Description:

Wyndham Lewis' position as an English artist (in both the visual and written sense) has always been one under constant review, with defenders and detractors on either side. For this compilation, LTM label head James Nice comes down on the side of the former. Having produced an open-ended series of discs providing intriguing overviews of continental European avant-garde art of the early 20th century, Nice turns his focus on Lewis for the first British entry in said series. As the detailed liner notes indicate, Lewis was known mostly for his painting and various novels and nonfiction efforts, while his abilities as a speaker often came in for criticism. However, while there are both stumbles and too-speedy deliveries on the selections here -- taken from a range of BBC recordings in the last twenty years of his life, aside from three brief, roughly recorded extracts of poetry from a 1940 Harvard University appearance -- Lewis' understated voice sounds relatively comfortable. It's possible he preferred speaking into a microphone in a silent studio as compared to an audience. Of the BBC selections, three are essentially spoken essays on art and life -- the first, "When John Bull Laughs," is an idiosyncratic but extremely entertaining exploration on the English sense of humor in both positive and negative senses. The concluding selection, in contrast, is from his novel The Apes of God and is done as a dramatic performance, a bit overripe but no less effective. As an interesting bonus, the final track is a 1917 recording of a Broadway musical number, "Sympathy," which Lewis heard far too often for his own liking while on the front line in World War I, complaining about it fiercely to friends in letters cited in the liner notes. ~ Ned Raggett

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Product Info:

  • UPC: 5024545449228
  • Shipping Weight: 0.25/lbs (approx)
  • International Shipping: 1 item

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