Thursday, May 28, 2009

Florence Welch: Cure for Cultural Boredom

Summer is an important time for self-exploration, so it's essential to find a good source of introspection or inspiration. Last spring, I rediscovered Florence and the Machine per "Dog Days Are Over" (which has a knack of making me cry, and did tonight out of NOWHERE as I watched the Maida Vale performance of it, which I highly recommend and is viewable here), and re-rediscovered her just the other day after stumbling upon her picture in the May issue of ELLE UK. Starting that day, I have submerged myself into Florence and the Machine, reading old interviews, watching old videos, anything and everything I can, and its provided me with a bounty of inspiration.

A good story is necessary in the summer, a time that can get so dreadfully boring that you want to do something extreme. I've read some of my best books in the summer, and year after year, the pressure is on to find worthy contenders to beat the greats of years past. I think that, perhaps, via Florence, I may have found even a SERIES of contenders for this year's dive into reading. Captivated as I was by her disarming ability to tell a story, I've Googled pretty much everything name-dropped in her bloggings and interviews, etc., to come upon some serious gold in the "magical feminist" author that is, the apparently classic one I'd never heard of, Angela Carter. Tonight, I've been drowning in works like The Bloody Chamber and The Magic Toyshop (neither of which I even own... yet), even their chapter names so full of strange poetry that the connections Welch draws from her work is immediately visible to a Florence fan. You don't even have to go in with a clear plot in your mind, and it's still interesting as hell.

It's almost enough to get ME writing again. Hopefully, you'll get the idea too from the Alice in Wonderland-inspired video for her wonderful upcoming single, "Rabbit Heart (Raise It Up)":


Valentina said...

AHHHH ANGELA CARTER. Crazy bitch. Oh god, how I never ever ever want to read anything related to or inspired by the Marquis de Sade again. Please dear lord, this is all I ask of you. I attempted to read The Sadeian Woman for one of my classes last semester, but I just. Couldn't. Handle it. Too many sexually explicit texts begin to wear on you after a while.

This being said, her works are pretty fucking great:) And I got mad love for Florence and the Machine. This just makes me love her even more!


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