Music to paint to, The Clangers & Azathoth

My earlier posting on Painting Tables, noted that both Rich & I have radios/iPods on the table. It’s also a fairly common topic that crops on the Steve Dean Forum as well (as does posting pictures of paint desks).

I often find if I’m not listening to music, or the radio, then my focus drifts and I end up staring blankly at the pile of lead/plastic/resin in front of me. On the other hand, if I put on the wrong music I get distracted by the music. So it has to be the right type of music.

So far my favourites for listening whilst painting are:

  • Skinny Puppy, especially the Brap sessions CD
  • Killing Joke, the re-mixes on the various Pandeamonium era singles especially Millenium
  • Fields of the Nephilim, the really long remixes like Sumerland (Dreamed version)
  • The Sisters of Mercy, again all the really long remixes like Lucretia that weighs in at 9.51
  • Barry Adamson, his earlier stuff which is like a sound track to a film noir/gangster film
  • Alien Sex Fiend, especially Nocturnal Emissions
  • Portishead, again singles remixes
  • Terminal Power Company
  • New Order, remixes
  • The Sisterhood
  • Anything by James Ray, though in particular Hubris (25 Men), the album that wasn’t released and won’t be in that version

Hmm, there’s a pattern there – lots of stuff to zone out to whilst still receiving aural stimulus (that’s aural not oral, stop sniggering at the back !).

Rich commented:

Listening while painting…

The radio is mainly for sport. Sport commentary, sport news, sport opinion, sport speculation, sport quizzes. Almost any sport (except rugby, obviously!). You could argue that sport is best spectated via TV, but then I’d never get anything else done. I managed to only watch about 15 minutes of the Olympics on TV but listened to 5 or 6 hours a day, which is a lot of modelling / painting / messing about on the web time saved.

For music, I have my PC adjacent to my painting table, which, apart from being a gateway to the dastardly distractions of tinterweb (like this blog, for example), is also home of my music. I don’t have specific favourites for painting, but instrumental or mellower sounds are good if you are trying to concentrate… for example…

And So I Watch You From Afar
Explosions in the Sky

or older / less obscure…

The Orb

So again, something to stimulate the brain but not enough to distract from the painting at hand.

Now, when I got back from Colours I commented: best of all I came home to a new CD of music….more of which later… it was in fact a CD of The CLangers music:

The Clangers was a 1970’s children’s TV programme made by Oliver Firmin with music by Vernon Elliot. I’d bought it because one of my cats, Black Jack, whilst always very chattery, has now been doing very good impressions of The Soup Dragon (@5.30), burbling and chattering away to himself (he is my alarm cat and gets me up every morning by doing this outside my bedroom door). So I thought I’d get this CD so I could listen to it whilst painting.

But what’s this ? The Music of the Spheres, the last piece of music on the last episode…a thought emerged in my brain cell, and after some research my hunch was confirmed. The Clangers, are actually connected to Azathoth !

Price sees another inspiration for Azathoth in Lord Dunsany’s Mana-Yood-Sushai, from The Gods of Pegana, a creator deity “who made the gods and thereafter rested.” In Dunsany’s conception, MANA-YOOD-SUSHAI sleeps eternally, lulled by the music of a lesser deity [Skarl] who must drum forever, “for if he cease for an instant then MANA-YOOD-SUSHAI will start awake, and there will be worlds nor gods no more.” This oblivious creator god accompanied by supernatural musicians is a clear prototype for Azathoth, Price argues.

and Dunsany goes on to comment:

Some say that the worlds and the Suns are but the echoes of the drumming of Skarl

The Music of the Spheres, is clearly, unequivocally linked to this:

The Music of the Spheres incorporates the metaphysical principle that mathematical relationships express qualities or ‘tones’ of energy which manifest in numbers, visual angles, shapes and sounds … Pythagoras proposed that the Sun, Moon and planets all emit their own unique hum (orbital resonance) based on their orbital revolution

So there you have it, not only is the sound track to the Clangers suitable for painting to, but helps keep Azathoth at bay by the repeated musical ability of The Clangers !

3 Responses to Music to paint to, The Clangers & Azathoth

  1. Stuart Priest says:

    I’m going to blow this wide open. I listen to the tv. I usually paint in the living room with my other half.

  2. Yeah, but are you watching The Clangers on TV ?
    These are the things we need to know !

  3. Stuart Priest says:

    No. Normally a heady mix of the Hairy Bikers (food), Great British Bake Off (food), American Guns (gun toting lunatic Yanks) and Celebrity Juice (smut).

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