IMAGINE WAKING UP TOMORROW AND ALL MUSIC HAS DISAPPEARED

Imagine Waking Up Tomorrow and All Music has Disappeared
Bill_Drummond_holding_roller_after_completing_IMAGINE_Graffiti_under_Spaghetti_Junction__Birmingham__2014_ref_P4987_1402482450_crop_550x354
Art terrorist who burnt a million pounds on a bonfire, reluctant and confrontational rock star with the KLF one of the biggest bands of the early nineties who deleted their back catalogue and general all round provocateur are just some of the soubriquets that Bill Drummond has acquired in his time in the public eye. This film goes behind the difficult image and allows some insights into the man as he embarks on his project The 17, a conceptual choir made up if various contributors who are assisting in the making of a piece of music which will put all the disparate strands collected together in this film to be played only once and only to those who have participated and then deleted. Radical eh?
The concept behind this film, directed by Stefan Schweitert is in its title and it was borne out of Drummond’s observation that our lives are now so overly saturated with music that we can now carry our entire record collection around in our pockets on our phones resulting in the fact we all take it for granted and deny it the value that music once had both on and in our lives. It is indeed an interesting concept and one that I have often argued myself but Drummond decides that he wants to make a piece of music that is created after all music and all knowledge of music has been erased from our society- record/CD collections destroyed, iPods wiped etc- and how we would go about creating a piece of music without this prior knowledge or these influences to draw upon.
His solution to this is to travel around and ask different groups of people, all basically non-musicians with no musical knowledge, to contribute different three minute sections of vocal performances-some musical others not so much- in order to splice them together to create a whole that is refreshing and original.
With typical perversity –and ultimately frustratingly for the viewer- we are unable to decide for ourselves as Drummond does not allow us to hear the fruits of his labour at the films denouement as it is solely for those who have been involved in the process. Although it is frustrating it is also clever as the process and the samples we have heard along the way allow our minds to create its own version of the piece of music he has denied us from hearing. I am assuming this is the point and as such it is one well made.
‘Imagine Waking Up Tomorrow and All Music Has Disappeared’ allows Drummond to extend his reputation as a provocateur.
The people he encounters and engages with along the way provide different levels of assistance and resistance to his project but he always draws something out of them. A particularly amusing moment comes when a child confronts him about the burning a million pounds on a bonfire moment and one senses a feeling of slight regret over this as his own children have apparently questioned his reasoning regarding it. I must admit the long drawn out seascapes eventually became a little tiresome especially as they seemed to be setting the scene for a piece of music we never actually got to hear-except in our own imaginations- though they were exceptionally beautiful.

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