WHY WAS IT IMPORTANT TO STAMP THESE BOOKS IN BLOOD? I put out cassettes and you do this really personal thing with your music and then you package it in this random plastic box. There are hundreds of them and then [when] you give it to someone, it doesn't feel as personal as it did when you did it. This [book] was just this insane physical and psychological process and then you mass-produce it and you give it to somebody, it just feels like a newspaper. [Laughs.]
CAN YOU TELL ME ABOUT THE NEW READING SERIES? You can't go to, say, a music show in a basement where there's five bands that are all extremely loud — everybody's drinking, it's late — and break that hypnosis and ask for silence to do a reading. You just can't. I was also upset because a lot of musicians can play [very easily in Providence]. There are like three shows a week, minimum; sometimes there are three shows a night. If you're a musician and you want to try out your music, you just say, "Hey, I want to play this show," but you have dozens and dozens and dozens of writers who hide in their rooms and think that they're writers but they're not performing. When it's time to read their work, they're nervous, they don't know how to control an audience. And I sort of think I enjoy forcing writers to perform. Because I don't think music has any more value as a performative art form than writing does.
Copies of The Madness of the Canary are available at Ada Books and AS220 Project Space and via negativepressprovidence.wordpress.com. The Empty Room No. 2 will take place Friday, March 22 at 9 pm. Email firstname.lastname@example.org for details. Humanbeast will appear in the RISD Museum's "One Room" experimental space this summer.
: This Just In
, Ada Books, AS220 Project Space