Synth echoes and organ notes waver amid the sound of cymbals. It’s something like the sound of weightlessness. In this sound, time floats like it’s surrounded by sound. Or we float as if surrounded by time, time that behaves like sound. But the sound is underwater and so sounds as if it comes at us from all directions at once, like time. These sounds and that surrounding kind of time stayed with me as I, engrossed, read Mark Neal’s labyrinthine meditations in Black Ephemera. In the title, Mark calls it: The Crisis and Challenge of the Musical Archive, and as I read I thought about these words. Maybe the musical challenge is about how, and why, any moment can also be a “sonic moment,” one that sounds like something. And then your mission—should you accept it—to connect those dots means a heightened, challenged, and maybe empowered level of...
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Book Review| March 03 2023
Black Ephemera: The Crisis and Challenge of the Musical Archive
Black Ephemera: The Crisis and Challenge of the Musical Archive, by Mark Anthony Neal
New York Univer Sity Press,
2022. 232 Pages. ISBN: 9781479806904 (Paper), $27.00.
The Langston Hughes Review (2023) 29 (1): 109–114.
Ed Pavlić; Black Ephemera: The Crisis and Challenge of the Musical Archive. The Langston Hughes Review 3 March 2023; 29 (1): 109–114. doi: https://doi.org/10.5325/langhughrevi.29.1.0109
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