2002 – New Forms III

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At New Forms III

7th June 2002 – New Forms III – Roots en Rituelen, Theater aan het Spui, Den Haag, The Netherlands

Set List

  1. Anarcadia: All Horned Animals (Extended Version)
  2. The Gimp/Sometimes
  3. Amethyst Deceivers (Version 2)
  4. Broccoli (Version 1)
  5. Backwards

Soundcheck

  1. Backwards (Audio Track)
  2. Backwards
  3. Amethyst Deceivers
  4. The Gimp / Sometimes

Touring Background

Brainwash recounted Coil’s live news from John on May 5, 2002: “We play den Haag on June 7th. A “Ritual” themed festival (New Forms III presented by Paard Op Hol). We are planning an ANAL communion cup and wafers. Transfiguration. Alongside Julian Cope. Pagans are GO! Thighpaulsandra is back aboard the mothership too, hurray! And we will have our Zürich Black Sun Pan Dancers Pierce Caliban Cock and Massimmo along too, so a full on live onslaught, hopefully. Russia again – Moscow and St. Petersburg – and probably Krakow, Poland, and Stockholm too in September/October this year. Plans for USA Spring 2003 but we desperately need a reliable promoter!!! Can anyone help??? And then Mexico, Brazil and South America after that. And a full COIL 6 hour event at the Shepherds Bush Empire in London as soon as we can get slotted in.”

A lot of interesting new conventions were introduced at this gig. Firstly, Thighpaulsandra rejoined Coil live. Apparently, he returned just as Mike York left for currently unknown reasons. I’m guessing the rest of the band were getting somewhat tired of the material of this phase by this point, so Thighpaulsandra never played (or learned to play) “Slur,” “A Cold Cell,” “Paranoid Inlay,” or “Sick Mirrors” with the band – the only four songs played live he ever missed. Consequently, Coil would play a tighter set for this show and the next, such that you can hear just how much Thighpaulsandra changed the dynamic of the material, as Peter began constructing what would become the “Live Four” material set.

Massimo and Pierce also rejoined the band and would tour with them all the way through to the end of the “Live Four” phase. Their choreography became much more rehearsed and deliberate from this gig onward.

Concert Background

Feeling: Reflective

“Backwards / The Remote Viewer” phase. Final live performance of “Broccoli (Version 1)”

Other acts: Von Magnet, Biosphere, Christian Fennesz, Hazard, Little Axe (featuring Doug Wimbish, Skip McDonald, Keith Leblanc and Adrian Sherwood), John Wozencroft, Hector Alveilos, etc.

Cliff Stapleton applied a new phasing effect to his hurdy-gurdy on “The Gimp/Sometimes” and “Backwards.”

Anarcadia: All Horned Animals/The Gimp/Sometimes

To compensate for Mike’s missing bombarde, John yelped into the microphone periodically.

Following its usual ordinary 5-minute structure, “Anarcadia” mutated into a lengthy improvised jam – the first of only two times this happened. John improvised cryptic lyrics and Thighpaulsandra re-edited samples picked up from his microphone. Midway through said jam, John sang “Sometimes, I hate myself,” among other lines, which harken back to the song “The Gimp/Sometimes,” released in August 1999 on the Hate People Like Us compilation. Whether the jam was deliberately intended as a version of that song is unclear, but the lyrics would later be reincorporated on the similarly named “The Gimp (Sometimes)” of the “Black Antlers” phase. Make no mistake; in all three iterations, they’re very different songs, but the lyrics all tie them together thematically.

Oh…Ooh… [John hisses]

Dr. Livingstone, I presume
Dr. Livingstone, I presume
Well, the Victorians presumed everything, didn’t they?
Well, the Victorians consumed everything, didn’t they?
Well, the Victorians glorified everything, didn’t they?
Their way [repeated]

Dr. Livingstone, I presume
Well, the Victorians presumed everything
Well, the Victorians viewed everything
Well, the Victorians consumed everything
Dr. Livingstone, I presume

Well, the stones have sunk under the water
The stones have sunk under the water
The stones have sunk under the mater

Mr. Livingstone, Mr. Kidney Stone in the middle stone
The boy was found on the Ceresit #5
The remains of the boy were found on the Ceresit #5
Dr. Livingstone, I presume

[John incantates]

Well, I’m searching for a whole, the White Nile
I’m following a white line across a map, a map, a map
Following a red one
A red book [repeated]
A Biblical book
A text, a text, a text…
[John incantates]

It wasn’t a hieroglyphic, it wasn’t a hieroglyphic, it was not a high, whee, lala, ooh
Oh no, no, no, no, whee, yow!

Black Nile
White Nile
Black Nile
White Nile
Black Nile
White Nile
Denial
Denial, in denial, in denial, in denial
Black Nile
In denial
Denial, denial

Just think of all the books they burned
Just think of all the books they burned
Just think of all the books they burned
Of all the things they could have learned
Of all the things we could have learned
Sss…

Sometimes, I hate myself
Sometimes, I hate myself
Sometimes, I hurt myself
Sometimes, I hurt myself
Sometimes, I hate myself
Sometimes, I help myself
Sometimes, I help myself
Sometimes, I hate myself
Sometimes, I hate myself
Sometimes, I hate myself
Sometimes, I hate this wealth
Sometimes, I hate this wealth
Sometimes, I hate this wealth
Sometimes, I hate this wealth
[John makes shivering noises]

Sometimes, I hate myself
Sometimes, I hate myself
Sometimes, I hate myself
Sometimes, I help myself
Sometimes, I help myself
Sometimes, I hurt myself
Sometimes, I hate myself
Sometimes, I hate myself
[John incantates]

Sometimes, I hate myself
Sometimes, I hate myself
Sometimes, I hate myself
Sometimes, I hate myself
Sometimes, I hate myself
Sometimes, I hate myself
Sometimes, I hurt myself
Sometimes, I hurt myself
Sometimes, I help myself
Sometimes, I help myself
Sometimes, I help myself
Sh…Oh…

Sometimes, I hate myself
Sometimes, I help myself
Sometimes, I hurt myself

The “Dr. Livingstone, I presume” lyric either references the man himself, Dr. David Livingstone, a famous explorer who contributed to the “Scramble for Africa” movement, or the Moody Blues song of the same name. The “hieroglyphic” lyric is possibly a reference to Einstürzende Neubauten’s Kollaps band logo or the similar icon from Coil’s previous song “Something.”

At the beginning of the song, Massimo and Pierce walked onstage in front of distorted mirrors on either side, then slowly raised their arms upward, holding them until the end of the song. This must have been difficult, as on all video recordings, Pierce is seen panting heavily after the song.

Amethyst Deceivers

John: “Yes, I am needy. Yes, I am greedy. Take me to your leader! Yes, I’m needy, yes, I’m greedy. Take me to your leader.”

So pay your respects to vultures
So pay your respects to the vultures
Pay your respects to the vultures
And pay your respects to the vultures
As they peck, peck, peck, peck, peck, peck…
Peck [repeated]
Peck, huh [repeated]
Peck

And feed the birds
Feed the birds only tuppence a bag [repeated]
Yo, feed the birds only tuppence a bag
You gotta feed the birds
You pay only tuppence a bag
Yeah, feed the birds
Oh, tuppence a bag
Only tuppence a bag
Only tuppence a bag

You pay the Harridan city by the statue and fountain in the ebby financial districts
London’s financial districts fucked
London’s financial districts fucked
London’s financial districts fucked
You’re not gonna get much for tuppence, there
You’re not gonna get much for tuppence, there
They take credit cards, now
They take credit cards, now
Amethyst deceivers, amethyst deceivers, amethyst deceivers
Amethyst deceivers are now in the hands of the receivers
So you better wait for a letter through your door, to find out how much you can claim back

The “tuppence a bag” lyric is a reference to a song from the movie Mary Poppins, which later appeared on some performances of “Black Antlers (Where’s Your Child?).”

Broccoli

John: “Thank you, thank you. Can we have a little bit more, uh, rather, a little bit less, uh, sort of bright light on the stage, please? It’s sort of swamping us with yellowness.”
Peter: “More moody.”
John: “More moody, more moody, please, so we’ll give you a few moments to arrange that, thank you. This next one is about answer were, ancestor worship, uh…It’s about how I don’t get on with my mother, and I don’t get on with my stepfather. I get on with my father, I don’t get on with my uncles and aunts on one side. I sort of respect them, but pretty scared of them on the other side because they do weird things, but not weird in the way I like. They don’t get wired, and they’re not really weird. They don’t get wired, and they’re not really weird. Wise words, wise words, come from the skies. So take a few moments each day to remember your ancestors. They were why you are here now. Like it or not, and I’m not sure I do, I’m not sure I like it, and I’m not sure I don’t.”

This version is notable for both Thighpaulsandra’s synth notes and John’s “You never had!” bridge. At some point during the song, Massimo become covered with fake blood – I’m not sure when or how this happened.

Wise words from the departing
Eat your greens, especially broccoli
Wise words from the departing
Always wear sensible shoes
And always say “Thank you”
Especially for broccoli
And remember to say “Thank you”
Especially for the things you’ve never had
You’ve never had

Wise words from the departing
Eat your greens, especially broccoli
And always remember to say “Please” and “Thank you”
Especially for the things you’ve never had
You’ve never had
You’ve never had
You’ve never had
You’ve never had
You’ve never had
You’ve never had
You’ve never had
You’ve never had
You’ve never had
You’ve never had
You’ve never had
You’ve never had
You’ve never had

By working the soil, we cultivate good manners
By working the soil, we cultivate our own vegetable kingdom
We cultivate our own heaven
It is in the vegetable kingdom
Wise words from the departing
Eat your greens, especially broccoli
Always remember to say “Please” and to say “Thank you”
Especially for the things we’ve never had
You’ve never had
You’ve never had
You’ve never had
You’ve never had
You’ve never had
You’ve never had
You’ve never had
You’ve never had
You’ve never had
You’ve never had
You’ve never had
You’ve never had
You’ve never had
You’ve never ha-

You’ve never had
You’ve never had
You’ve never had
You’ve never had
You’ve never had
You’ve never had
You’ve never had
You’ve never had
You’ve never had
You’ve never had
You’ve never had
You’ve never had
You’ve never had
You’ve never had

Wise words from the departing
Eat your greens, especially broccoli
Always wear sensible shoes, always wear sensible shoes
And always say “Please” and “Thank you”
Especially for the things you’ve never had
You’ve never had

Death grows, death flows, death knows
Death knows, death flows, death flows like a river
Death knows, death knows, death grows
Death knows, death grows, death flows like a river
Like a river

Backwards

John: “Thank you, uh…Me and my shadow, me and my shadow, me and my shadow, the black shadow of Cher. Me and my shadow, me and my shadow, me and my shadow, the black shadow of Cher. Me and my shadow, me and my shadow, me and my shadow, the black shadow of Cher. Beware, beware, the black shadow of Cher. Beware, beware, the black shadow of Cher. Oh, it’s electricity pulsating through the voltage, electricity pulsating through the voltage. Gotta go back, you gotta go further back, further back and faster. Anita Pallenburg said to me, ‘You’ve gotta further go back, you’ve gotta go further back and faster. You gotta go further back and faster. In fact, you’ve gotta go, when you’ve gotta go, when you go, when you gotta go, you gotta go backwards. Backwards. Backwards. Yeah, backwards. Backwards. Backwards. Backwards. Backwards.”

To extend it to over 20 minutes, Peter permutated the backing audio track climax to come sooner than normal, then go back to the verse, then to a second climax. Both climaxes feature elements of “Constant Shallowness Leads to Evil.”

Massimo and Pierce made a show of eyeing each other up throughout the first five minutes of the song, and at a certain point crawled up to each other and started making out, spitting fake blood onto each other, beating each other on the butts like drums, and even giving each other hand jobs. During the first climax, the two of them crawl onto John and hump his legs incessantly, forcing him to the ground and coating his white suit in the fake blood.

Well, out-of-phase hammers disconnecting the brain
Out-of-phase hammers disconnecting the brain [repeated]
Backwards

Black squids, black pariahs
Black squids, black messiahs
Black Madonna, black messiah
Black Maria, black pariah
She’ll have your eye out [repeated]

Ugh, I feel loved
I feel loved [repeated]
I feel loved, but it’s backwards
But it’s backwards, but it’s backwards
I feel loved! [repeated]

Me and my shadow, me and my shadow
It’s just me and my shadow [repeated]

This is the first version of “Backwards” in performance that makes me think it’s about coming to terms with being gay. John had sung the “I feel loved” lyric before, but coupled with Massimo and Pierce clinging to him, it makes me think the song was about John’s personal journey throughout his life of coming to terms with being gay, despite being raised in a very conservative/repressive English household.

John’s closing words: “Thank you very much. We were Coil, thank you. Goodnight. And you better pay close attention to Julian Cope. You better very, very close attention. In fact, you may allowed be even to take notes. I’m not sure. I think you should.” This was apparently a slight against Julian Cope, who had then-recently criticized Thighpaulsandra for some sexual imagery in his solo works.

Line-up

John Balance – vocals, sleigh bells on “Anarcadia: All Horned Animals”
Peter “Sleazy” Christopherson – Ableton sequence, video projections, Clavia Nord Modular Synthesizer
Thighpaulsandra – Fenix Synthesizer, Clavia Nord Modular Synthesizer, Electro-Harmonix on John’s vocals (with 16-second delay, modified by Kanwal Dulay)
Simon Norris (Ossian Brown) – Clavia Nord Modular Lead Synthesizer, sleigh bells on “Anarcadia: All Horned Animals”
Cliff Stapleton – hurdy-gurdy
Massimo Villani – Black Sun Productions’ “Ghost Boy” performance art
Pierce Wyss – Black Sun Productions’ “Ghost Boy” performance art

Advertisements, Backstage or Related Promo Material

Ticket Stubs

Please contact us if you have any ticket stubs from this event: info@live-coil-archive.com

Venue

New Forms III Festival
Theater aan het Spui
Spui 187
2511 BN Den Haag
Netherlands

Gallery

Attendee Recollections

Marcel de Cocq attended this gig and remembers: “Den Haag was super intense because of the spectacular performance of Pierce and Massimo. Nobody expected to get that on top of the music.”

Known Recordings

Tapes owners/taper:

AUD #1 – Markus Karl Phlippen.
EDIT #1 – comprised of AMTs owned by DraZen (onstage, AMT #2), Paul Klaui (background), and Claus Laufenburg (front of stage).

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