Friday, October 12, 2012

"We called it 'Kaning' the music. So-called perfect music, whatever genre - aims to remove these flaws, to have a true and complete, finished thing. The flaws leave a space, where the listener can still add something of her own, where she can sit and be.. Kaning means going to the threshold of creation, of maximum potential where all things are possible yet uncreated, the realm of Lucifer and the Dark angels, the shoreline where angels build sandcastles in defiance of the creator..  This is the level of creativity we aspired to, without having a bloody clue. But this is what drove us to make music, as ill-equipped as we were" -- from a riveting dialogue between Rudy Tambala and Neil Kulkarni at the Quietus, on the occasion of  A.R. Kane's The Complete Singles Collection being released by One Little Indian.

I wrote the bio for this double CD anthology. That text has also been issued by One Little Indian as one of their Collectors Booklets, which come housed in seven-inch sleeves. In it there's also another interview with Rudy that takes you through their discography release by release. The booklet is free if you buy the Singles collection as part of One Little Indian's Totem Series.


It starts like this...

It is tempting to describe A.R.Kane as the great lost group of the 1980s.

"Great" is spot-on. And "1980s" is more or less accurate (they did release some stuff in the Nineties but the late Eighties was A.R.Kane's recording prime). 

No, it's the "lost" bit that is misleading. It gives the impression that this was a group that was neglected, overlooked... if not utterly unknown, then certainly marginal in the scheme of things. And that is inaccurate.  

Not only were A.R.Kane renowned and revered, but, in certain quarters, they were regarded and written up as one of the central groups of their era. The singles and albums received rave reviews (and when I say "rave" I mean frothing at the mouth, purple-prose-drooling paeans). Their faces appeared on the front covers of the British music weekly papers. But A.R. Kane weren't just critics' faves either. Sixty nine, their debut album, topped the independent charts in the summer of 1988....

Off their debut single, a track I always thought was titled "Haunted"

And, not their greatest tune by a long shot, but who knew there even was a promo video for "Green Hazed Daze"?