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Wednesday, September 22, 2004

Carl Howard & Space Patrol

As you may have noticed this blog has a special feature devoted to Luxuriamusic.com in general - and to Carl Howard's SPACE PATROL in particular. Here's a short Introductory interview (by mail) with your one true SPACE PATROL host himself:

"Z - Hi Carl! Why are you doing this?

C - I produce SPACE PATROL episodes in order to prevent myself from having to think about having not been properly employed since god knows when. Except for The Lounge King and his confidante Special Agent 69, currently no other Luxuria host has had the free time to compile, research, and present an original, pre-recorded program at the rate of one a week, and I completely understand why. Even Chuck Kelley's "Heroes & Villains" program, which he spins live to DAT much as he used to spin it live at the original Luxuria, requires preparation, and now, post production. Both he and Paul Kennedy,the host of "Nightscape", tried at first to do a show a week, but quickly realized it was impossible, and cut back to one new show every month. It's a good thing that Luxuria has an active robot playlist currently exceeding 4,500 tunes - they're needed!

Z - What music in particular are you into? Any favorite artists?

C - For the Luxuria format I get in a diverse cross section of listening that is somewhere between a furious swath of destruction and a spurious swath of destruction, but there is music I enjoy which clearly doesn't fit. One can hear some of it in early episodes of SPACE PATROL when it wasn't exactly clear what outlet would wind up broadcasting them: there was more punk-period DEVO, John Foxx with Ultravox, Captain Beefheart, and horrific oddballisms by the likes of The New Creation and Wee Willie Shantz. These days I basically keep the PAIN content of the show to the closing track, where one will still hear misguided crooners like Wing (a very sweet lady, by the way), Anna-Lisa Ingemansson, Florence Foster Jenkins and so on. The PAIN segment, sometimes referred to as PAIN ALLEY, is a tribute to the novelty records show at the original Luxuria presented by the DJ Strike, who strangely enough hasn't been heard from since the end of Luxuria I in April 2001. You're also not going to hear space rock, free jazz, or analog-style electronic music on SPACE PATROL - they're not appropriate. But it doesn't mean that I'm not listening to them.

Z - What does eclectic mean to you?

C - Alterna-yuck doesn't mean anything to me. I've been through enough phases, absent perhaps extreme hardcore power noize, and perhaps what used to be called EBM in some parts of Europe, to have a sense of what I simply don't care about. I have no problem with a retro sensibility, for several reasons, not all of them necessarily rational. But one reason is, if something has been done before and it has obviously been done so right that younger generations now want to pay it tribute by sampling the life out of it, that means the original likely has an indisputable merit which deserves to be kept in view. So for example, I'll take a hefty slice of French library funk by Mat Camison or Eddie Warner - something which from the outset was intended to be sold as background music for a car chase sequence and later became breakbeat fodder - and play it from beginning to end solely on its own merits. That makes me, in a sense, not only an obscurist but atraditionalist. And a snob too.

Z - Who is Carl Howard?

C - None of your business!

Unconscionable fraudmeister, at yourXXXX at my service."