Saturday, January 15, 2011

RIP Trish Keenan

Woke up this morning to the rotten news that Trish Keenan, of Broadcast, has died. Apparently from pneumonia (who dies from pneumonia in 2011?). It is often thought that Stereolab and Broadcast had much in common. Now they have one more thing: they have both lost core members to non-rock'n'roll-related deaths.

I cannot really express how sad this news makes me feel, nor how much Broadcast have meant to me. I first heard them back in 1996, when Bart gave me a copy of their Wurlitzer Jukebox single "Accidentals / We've Got Time". I have been with them ever since; every album bought and paid for. (They were way too special for internet downloads.) In fact, their first album (actually a collection of singles), "Work And Non Work", was the last new record I bought on vinyl, on account of its cover being so tactile and lovely in its 12" iteration. That was when we were still living in Alma Road. Much later, I managed to convince an employee of Red Eye, in Sydney, to sell me a copy of "HaHa Sound" a couple of days before it was supposed to be put on the shelves.

As the years went on, and the band reduced in size to its ultimate core of two, and the music became more strikingly avant-experimental (their last album, a collaboration with Ghost Box's The Focus Group, was Wire magazine's album of the year in 2009) they never lost sight of the pop side of the equation.

I am so very, very sorry. I don't know what else to say.

Here is a wonderful example of the Broadcast sound: