Forced Vacuum

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From Ric Ocasek’s interview with The Onion A.V. Club,

AVC: It’s hard to pinpoint any hard influences on The Cars besides old-time rock and maybe krautrock. What were you listening to then?

RO: As a songwriter, oddly enough, my influences were people like Bob Dylan, The Velvet Underground, and Buddy Holly. Some psychedelic stuff, too. Back then, there wasn’t a lot of press on bands. There was Creem and Rolling Stone, and that was about it. There certainly wasn’t the Internet. You would stay in your basement and create something and then come out. You didn’t have anything to rub off on. You didn’t know what the band down the street was doing, because you couldn’t look it up, and you couldn’t see it on TV. I think people tended to come out with things that were different because they weren’t influenced by their environments as much. I find these days, you almost have to force yourself to stay in a vacuum to become different; if you really want to be different. Maybe you have to have something different inside of you as well.

I recognized something of myself, and of MFR, in what Ric is saying.  As much music as I listen to, I’m very isolated from the pop/rock of the moment – I’m six months behind on indie stuff at least, plus I listen to a lot of older music.  I’ve never been immersed in a scene, save the Crete scene which was only us.  And I my two experiences of real musical vacuum, in Ghana, were highly formative.

We were talking about folk music a while back, and there are some ways MFR functions as a tiny culture with its own indigenous music.  When it comes to Tape / echoes shows, I certainly treat it that way, mixing songs from all our artists AND their non-MFR projects!  Especially Cory and I, working together and also separately (but in parallel & conversation) – I think we’ve written and recorded ourselves out into a sort of vacuum; a bubble in which we have our own aesthetic dialect of pop/folk/rock.

That’s maybe what I most dig, and am most proud of, about this wild beast.  -h

One thought on “Forced Vacuum”

  1. Dude, I’m doing some XMAS tunes again this year, if that’s okay. You just might sh*t in your panties.


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