Songs About Fucking And Killing

Diamanda Galás. Photo by Bobby Talamine.

The Blues comes out of the soil, and it’s in our DNA—the same stuff as that of ancient peoples who worshipped even more ancient, strange gods. It’s bound tightly in our lizard brains. Galás sings from there, and that’s where she touches us, at a distance, with her voice. Evaluating her recordings and most specially her performances is pro forma and irrelevant. She sings the hell out of everything, and it doesn’t matter whether that’s good or bad, because either you crave the experience she gives you, or you fear it.

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I'm a composer and musician, and I write about music—I do that here, for the New York Classical Review, at the Brooklyn Rail (I edit the music section there) and any place else that will have me, like New Music Box and Music & Literature. I also wrote the Miles Davis' Bitches Brew book in the 33 1/3 series.