[T]he heart, thus giving thought and thus being memory, gives itself in thought to that to which it is held. --Martin Heidegger, What Is Called Thinking?
Good 'ole Martin certainly had a way with words, especially as regards thought and its role in worldly manifestations, no? That's the case for Disaster Amnesiac, anyway, and I must admit that I went right to my well-worn copy of the quoted book after receiving John Collins McCormick's new eh? Records cassette Healthy Alternative To Thinking. Maybe I was just trying to be clever, who knows, but that being said the idea of thinking and its analysis appeals to me, so there you go. This post should be about the music contained within Healthy Alternative, though. Let's hit on that. Just under thirty minutes of sound produced by up to eight subwoofers in drum stands, low frequencies, and "rattling odds and ends" makes for a sound that is Industrial, in that it's characterized by a rumbling, ceaseless low grade thrum, much like the sound of dental drill on a tooth or a jackhammer a few blocks down the street. The musical aspect comes from the overtones which arise within the mixture of the elements utilized by Collins McCormick. The listener is advised to be patient; they're there, but they don't jump out at first. This is not easy music to digest, but it hits that nerve that many people have, the one that can become entranced by simple sounds that repeat over and over again. Disaster Amnesiac has noted as well the engineering for Healthy Alternative, in that I'm guessing that John utilized close mic techniques for what I'd imagine is sound capture from a pretty delicate configuration. Dude is a sculptor, after all. To put that another way, this release doesn't scream obscenities at the confluence of large avenues, but instead whispers peculiarities from an (imagined) sitting room that is filled with books about Topics. Imagine Martin Heidegger pulling up rich, German earth with a powerful tractor, and you'll have a pretty good mental film with Healthy Alternative To Thinking as its soundtrack.