Like many of you I'm sure, I have been dipping into the online Markhive - rereading favorite pieces and posts. Below are just a handful - well, a couple of handfuls - really an armful - of Fisher classics. Along with the fully-realised long-form work, there's a few more fragmentary things too - in some ways even more enjoyable and characteristic. Mark was in his element when pitching into the fray - arguing, agreeing (but always building on his interlocutor's point, pushing it further along). Some of his best insights and lines emerged out of the back-and-forth of these fractious spaces - Dissensus threads, the K-punk comments box. Jewels, exuberant with the sheer sport of thought, that are hard to disentangle from the discursive thicket of their moment. But in a way it was in these innumerable brief exchanges and interactions that Mark's mind flexed itself most fruitfully - and merrily.
From the CCRU era, an early classic tirade against postmodernism, co-written with Robin Mackay - "Pomophobia".
"Isn't hip hop the problem these days?" - a short thought from 2004
Far more K-punk kanonical - an appreciation of Japan's Tin Drum.
Literally the K-punk kanon - his Top 100 British Albums
The klassic piece on Burial - "London After the Rave"
And the unedited transcript of the Burial dialogue.
On Fleetwood Mac
Photo-illustrated posts on hauntology and landscape - Suffolk + Norfolk
Quick riff on the UK music press and their long-gone power to "dream alternatives". And one on the emerging blog network as its replacement / fruition in exile.
Pomophobia, Pt 2 (via Robbie Williams)
On Picnic At Hanging Rock
Posts on the wounds of class
On Michael Jackson
"Ontological rot" - a piece on the artist Nigel Cooke
Mark returns to this theme - the relationship between political dissent and pop - against the backdrop the student protests and riots of 2011 - in this Wire end-of-year piece. (I always felt he was trying desperately here to avoid the utterly bleak conclusion that the mechanism that once connected music and the real world, social energy, issues, etc, had now broken down irrevocably).
His controversial intervention "Exiting the Vampire Castle" (containing a celebration / defense of Russell Brand)
"The Secret Sadness of the 21st Century" - a piece on James Blake for Electronic Beats.
And a fantastic, ideas-packed, and wonderfully hopeful piece written immediately after the 2015 UK election and Labour's defeat - exploring the concept of "political retromania" and arguing for the role of pop culture in creating a sense that change is possible, not through explicit politicized agitation so much as through the "indirect action" of generating new narratives, new images, new structures, new modes of feeling.
"leaving some signs / now a legend"