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The Witching Rod

diamonds hadder deaf forever magazine germany interview

Image: A still from the 408 dayz.

Good morning. The owl is talking to me… “rise and shine johnny, fire up the war room, Fire up the War room!!!” Each morning I now cross a creeky wooden stairway descending the twisted oaks to the canyon floor. As I walk I hear the great owl hooting in the darkness. He knows something is coming, as I do as well. Lets talk a bit about Diamonds Hadder.

408: I feel like I’m living in a dream. It’s a quiet calm that’s fallen on me here at the oaks. Boxes and trinkets and wires are all spread out in strange rooms and I’m trying desperately to complete the vinyl artwork amongst the ruins of my move. This week I’ve settled into the final stages of the Photo college I’ve been designing for the insert. Images are thrown about my pine floors… ink jet light cards documenting the years I spent making the breakers record… coated in soot and ash from my nightly living room campfires. It’s a collection of images spanning the life of the record. I don’t really have a choice but to do this. Last night I was watching a documentary on “Mutt” lange and I was reminded that the things I’m doing now, the art for the vinyl, the process, the time spent… it’s all for the cause of this record. Although I’m very humbled and emotionally grateful for anyone who listens to it, this record is for me, I’m not making it for you. Sometimes we can get lost in what we think we’re doing. The initial reason can get blurred over time because we just want things to be done sometimes. Let’s face it, it’s just so damn hard to stay the course on a dream over extended period of time. Time is a real killer. However, although I feel like I’m trapped in the calm and solitary moments of quiet art under my new oaks, I do see a pleasant storm coming this spring and so I must batten down the hatches so to say, soon. This week I arrived at memory lane, down by the 408 images. What an interesting time that was during the record. There are things that happened at that time that I wont really ever discuss, but I will say it was one of the most productive moments of the breakers record in terms of tracking. It was there that I reopened the original version of the “Ballad of Dead Rabbit”. The original version was recorded in the home I lost to the fire. When I first played it in that tower, it spoke to me. Those vocals I recorded in that room downstairs that was now lost. I soloed the tracks and could almost here the room and house in the faint background noise of the track. It was like a ghost talking to me, Mr Evermore perhaps, as I think he was around me a lot back then. I was a bit troubled at the 408. Skirting the line between reality and a man who possibly was going mad. Luckily I had a purpose, “The Breakers”. I recorded “City of Fire”, “Rivers End” and the initial stages of the new “Dead Rabbit” re-write there at the 408. I also shot and edited the video for stargazer, recorded the Ramsay/Evermore tracks and wrote most of the novel there. It truly was a tower of inspiration. My own Frankenstein. By the end of my time at the 408, I was certainly confused as to what the hell I was doing, and ready for a place where I could step away and gain some new insights and perspective on what I had created up until them. That was when I moved to the LEX and finished up “Long is the Road and my re-write of the “Dead Rabbit”.

New Patterns: Well like I said a few weeks ago, the new seeds I’ve planted are starting to sprout. It’s a very small start to something I sense will soon overtake the floor bed here under the oaks. I’m back at the pacific, tracking the makings of breakers #2 during my morning ride into the city, much like I did when I started “Evermore”. My voice feels like a witching rod, leading me to new phrases and words and ideas by the hour. My days are filled with choirs and harmonies while my nights are spent chopping wood and filtering images for the vinyl insert. I’m now in the throughs of something special. Although the graphics computers are alive and well and computing, my war room is still powered off. I’m waiting for a few new pieces of hardware needed to fire it all up. It’s there I’ll finish up the music videos for the Breakers record. The new tower is fairly grand compared to the LEX. I have a tall roof now with true firelight and 4 moon windows above me. Windows for the great owl who I hope will impart some wisdom through his peering eyes. He sits on the arms of the oaks as I work. My own canyon Bubo.

The Cave:

Lyndear “John, there’s one more thing I should show you. I don’t really advertise it, but your welcome to use it.”

John “Ok, what is it?”

Lyndear “Let’s take a walk. When I was building this place, I wanted to have an area away from the house, a special place to store things and to work on projects. Me an Tom we decided to dig into the mountain and create a room nestled in the earth. We framed it with concrete and filled it back with dirt on the outsides when we were done with the foundation. We did our best but the water still seemed to find its way into the room so we eventually abandoned the idea of it. Oh, here it is… watch your step.”

(John and Lyndear come upon a large red door protruding from the mountain slope. A cave like doorway flat against the canyon wall leading to a secret room cut into the earth of the mountain. John opens the doorway and walks in with a little smirk on his face.)

John “Hmmm.. interesting space… “do rea me fa soooooo”… it has great acoustics. Does the electric work?”

Lyndear “No. At one time it did but it hasn’t worked in years. We tried a few things to see if we could stop the water from getting in but we gave up on it. Your welcome to do what you want with it.”

(John’s eyes were gleaming in the dark, the reflection of the red doorway could be seen in his irises. A sneaky grin crossed his lips as his gears were turning so fast you could almost see smoke pouring out of his ears. He turned to lyn and said.)

John “I think I might have a use for such a room. Perhaps in the spring.”

Well that’s all for now. I’m close to releasing the Vinyl artwork. A few twists and turns now and I’ll get back to my videos for the breakers record while the manufacturing elves do their things inside the closing weeks of winter.




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