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Pessimism of the Intellect, Optimism of the Will, Anxiety​-​Riddled Queasiness of the Stomach

by Vatul

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Improvisation: how to deal with the terrible news climate we are submersed in, with apologies to Gramsci for the title.

Recorded December 1, 2017 at the end of a very long year.



Here you can imagine a series of charts that show the world is actually getting better in many ways. Less people in extreme poverty, great progress on many low-hanging diseases.

You can stack them up, in your mind, against all the inequality and the awful 24-hour-news-network predictions of what the future holds. All the broken ridiculous things that humanity just seems to fail at.

Neither way of seeing is necessarily more correct, or easier to live with. We gotta be realists, right? You and me, baby. We're hip to the real groove of the universe. Not deluded. Totally not at all. But is it possible that the scares we were tuned by evolution to see are driving us nuts for less purpose now?

The dissonance of all the strange biases bubbling out of us leaves a strange afterglow in my eyes as I stare out to sea, sitting next to you on a bench. (The bench represents our shared experience, or maybe it represents a social network replacing our actual shared experience with the illusion of such, composed entirely of a fractal surface of interstitial advertising.)

Then you and I can go inside to play a game of Monopoly. This game will symbolically determine which corporation is going to rule over our dried-out bones. The board of directors won't really care if our skeletons are optimistic or pessimistic about the future they own.


released December 15, 2017
Scott Gordon: Synth guitar, regular-ass guitar.
Dan Fitch: Pedals, trumpet, mouth, throwing drums down stairs.




Vatul Madison, Wisconsin

all is flux

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