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Posted on Friday, November 24th, 2006

They don’t celebrate thanksgiving in France you know.
So ungrateful, huh?
Here we are way further into the month than I imagined, my floor covered in small scraps of paper, blown from my wall calendar as if a window was left open, just like in the movies. In fact the whole year has been like that but, hey, what a productive year I’ve had. The sheer volume of music that I’ve written or produced or worked upon in some way supersedes any year I can remember and it’s not over yet. I’m a 20GB a day man…. I thought, foolishly perhaps, that as one gracefully slid well into their forties that things perhaps became easier, and you know, perhaps some things do. But then again some things don’t. Dealing with the business of being Robin Guthrie doesn’t get any easier, the balancing act of work and family doesn’t get any easier. Taking time out to do other things, you know, things which don’t involve being in the studio or online becomes difficult when I’ve set the bar so high for myself. Somewhere I have one of those time management for retard books but I’ve never taken the time to look for it. Conversely, some things become easier. I find that my musical output becomes more in harmony with my self than it has been before, I feel less insecure about most things, I feel more and more gratitude to be able to do what I do and I ‘m generally not as hard on myself when I can’t quite reach the targets that I’ve set myself. Hey middle fucking age, it’s great. It’ll be my birthday in a month or so and I’ll be halfway to ninety. How cool is that?
Anyway, here’s what’s up. Annie Barker is here, working on finishing her album. I’m taking the liberty to write this on her time as she is jetlagged and sleeping somewhere while we should be working. But I’m not being hard on myself, right? lol .. She has a very infectious enthusiasm for her work which is really nice to witness and I’m really happy to be part of it. Actually it’s nice to have someone in the studio as for the last few weeks I have been working in isolation, putting the finishing touches to the work that I’ve been doing with Harold Budd. It’s pretty much all done now and is just awaiting sequencing and mastering. I’d like to play it to people to have a reaction but as Harold himself hasn’t heard it I’ll wait for the moment. It’s quite simply heartbreakingly beautiful. I’ve not really ever made a record that has touched me in the way that this has and it seems a shame that because it’s instrumental it will always be categorised as so, and sure to be found incomplete by those people who’s minds are not fully open to what emotion can really sound like without having a human voice to act as a guidebook.
What else? I’ve a couple of remixes coming up when I can slot in a moment, things that I’ve been needing to get done but haven’t – see time management for retards – and a trip to California in January. The one thing that I’ve not had a chance to do for a while is some music of my own. I have no doubt that when I start some new things for myself they will act as a tonic, for a while, for all my other little bitchy complaints about life, somewhat like a drug addict being reunited with his drug of choice after a period of abstinence. One takes what pleasures as one can, these days, being halfway to ninety, don’t you know?

20 Responses to “Thanksgiving….”

  1. The Lullaby League

    They’re not “incomplete”. They just remind me of death, which, I’m not ready to deal with, halfway to seventy-six.

  2. mike_in_york

    can we not just hear even a short snatch of your music with Harold? guess politeness of course decrees otherwise and we shall have to patiently wait for release news … glad to hear that you are as productive as you describe – more lovely outpourings for us to drool over! bon chance!

  3. starfish

    I’ll be dead of anticipation at thrice past puberty by the time I get to hear your new record with Harold Budd. Continental is just so moving and deep to me that to hear you say the Harold Budd record touches you the most makes the wait even harder to endure.

    Best wishes to you and your family!

  4. starfish

    Ah, that was supposed to be thrice times puberty. I assure you, I am old enough to legally enjoy adult contemporary instrumental music.

  5. Eric

    …They don’t celebrate Thanksgiving in South America either. (for a good reason)

    Keep up the music.(tell Moose to make a new album too.)


  6. melanie

    hey robin. i cant wait to hear the new stuff.
    and california? hope to see you.

  7. bobby

    Halfway to 90 is only 1/4th the way to 180, so get some perspective, old man! 😉

    I’m listening right now to Snowfall… This track has a timelessness to it that bowls me over (and over and over), so even if you’re feeling time creep up on you, the work you put out hasn’t aged a day. Or if it has, it’s been like my favorite wine, and I can have as much of it as I want and never puke or shit myself trying to puke. Um. You probably know what I mean to say.

    This Thanksgiving, I’m grateful for the fruits of your labour (hey, I spelled it all Euro-like) from CT to now and in the future. And I keep stuffing myself full of it, will I burst?

  8. mateo

    hmmm, “Halfway to Ninety”…
    in MY crystal Ball, it reads like a heck of a good lp title.

  9. gaelle

    ”’Actually it’s nice to have someone in the studio as for the last few weeks I have been working in isolation”’ =>you should just have asked, i could have helped … :p

  10. Anonymous

    “I’ve not really ever made a record that has touched me in the way that this has and it seems a shame that because it’s instrumental it will always be categorised as so, and sure to be found incomplete by those people who’s minds are not fully open to what emotion can really sound like without having a human voice to act as a guidebook.”

    Look at all the work by Namlook. All instrumental and so much of it is just breathtakingly beautiful. Or the previous record you did with Budd or the Eno stuff or Klaus Schulz or Tangerine Dream. The list goes on and on of beautiful instrumental music that gets put by the wayside because people are finicky. Whatever. Just keep pressing the killer shit and who gives a fuck about what other people think. Cool, JG.

  11. The Lullaby League

    Well, fuck you, too. And while you’re at it, try reading a bible. “Thou shalt compass me about with songs of deliverance”.

  12. Anonymous

    happy b’day in advance Robin. And welcome to the half way to 90 club. who knows, with medical advances and a following wind we could be a 1/3 to 135…. nah…. but maybe our grandkids will :o)

  13. Highmonkey


    Though depression may make great tunes. Happy Happy, Joy Joy makes a great Robin. Doctor’s appointment?

    Thanks for my Happy Happy Joy Joy!

  14. Opaltide

    Happy Thanksgiving Robin, I was thinking of you recently…I wrote and edit some cd reviews on your work and I will go on with your last masterpieces (I am on overdose with Continental and Mysterious skin). Any chance to see you again live in Italy? We met last time after Violet Indiana gig in Venice dry land…you were very kind kidding on teaching guitar to me :)Kisses, Gina

  15. Bernie Thomas

    Come to Cleveland Ohio some time and say hello if you are ever able to. The last time I actually ever seen you was in maybe 1992 or 1993 and you and Liz and Simon were at a club in Detroit doing a tour for Four Calendar Cafe and you were with The Veldt at that show. The Veldt sang a slow Pearly Pearly Dew Drop Drops, and then eventually after they were finished you guys finally came out. The show was of course greats and still sticks out in my mind to this day now in 2006

  16. Amber

    Really looking forward to the Annie Barker album, the tracks on Myspace are beautiful!

  17. sfjim

    someone once said that the human voice is the perfect instrument. i would assume that means for humans…anyway, since you have one of those, too, you might want to experiment with it…!!!!

  18. Indyenna (Ian)

    They don’t celebrate Thanksgiving in France. You could start a trend, as always. Well, I hope that the Guthries celebrate Thanksgiving. There is a lot to be thankful for.
    I am thankful for every person–good and bad–that I’ve encountered and will encounter.

    I am glad that you are keeping things together. That is all one can do. I am 36 years young.

    Keep on doing what you are doing. “Time Management for Imbeciles” is a great read. I have it in my personal library as well.

    Going back into my studio. I am a 20 MB man. I am happy with the size of my file. As long as it works…and my system doesn’t crash. Hehehe.

  19. eran westwood

    hey robin…
    happy to read your on the mend….
    turkey holocoust day was horibl’e dry meat that makes you sleepy…yummy 🙂
    cheers ew

  20. lao

    Hey Robin 🙂
    I did not even know you were still making music before i found your blog. I immediately zoomed over to bella union and got your albums, velvet indiana 1&2, and your Imperial.(I did not find Continental). Imperial is very beautiful, it moves me like the best of the Cocteau twins tracks. I always thought Lazy Calm was the best song , and the first 2.17 minutes of it (the instrumental bit) to be the best music i have ever heard. To give you an idea, me and my wife are both artists, and have done together a photography series called ‘crystal world’ which is our view of beauty of existence, translucent landscapes revealing a deeper immaterial grace. Lazy Calm IS the sounds of what dreams we tried to catch on film, (we did not hear it untill later) and Imperial is the continuation and evolution of this. Thank you Robin, you have felt much beauty, and done the magic act of conveying it into sounds. The sounds from Milk & Kisses (superbly prodused) and Imperial, chilles me, it really touches me deep. i am a big supporter of yours, your instrumental music stands back for nothing,