it was always going to be like this
(Independent/Bandcamp) / Plus1
Andrew Fagan is a poet. Has always been a poet. In and around the albums by the Mockers and his solo fare there were books. And readings. Performance poet. Poet for the page. Taking poems to the people, putting poems on the stage. Andrew Fagan has a great voice for poetry. A mind for it too. Poetry is not cool. But he can make you feel like it is – and here he released 40+ poems on a spoken-word CD with some soundscape moments and sound effects to give it a feel. But the real feeling is in his voice.
He delivered a knockout opening set last year when sharing the bill with Dr. John Cooper Clarke. And this CD was created in time for that gig. I’m arriving to it late to write about – but wanted to mention it here in case anyone cared.
Spoken-word CDs are not for everyone, but I’ve always loved the story that happens when you listen to the human voice on record, tape or compact disc. We fill our ears with podcasts now. But as a kid I devoured stories and poems and then interviews and comedy on tape and LP.
And though a poetry album might be a hard sell I can thoroughly recommend this one. I’ve played it heaps.
I love the sound of Fagan’s voice. And I love his short, mad, wonderful, thoughtful pieces. He comes from the line of Sam Hunt, bardic, soulful.
And yes you’ll hear metaphors of and for the sea (“This vast surface of saline indifference, the empty theatre of human impermanence, no trace of traveller’s trail left out here, no signpost signals . . . that same horizon forever elusive never coming any closer always just out of reach . . .”) and he talks of offering a “verbal weather bomb”. Fagan might be happier at sea than anywhere else. But he’s certainly happy in his words here.
He even pays an off-beat tribute to Michael Hutchence and INXS (or at least cribs from their song Mediate) with his poem A Remote Option.