Last year I was a given a novel called Nod by a friend. It’s a dystopian affair that tells the story of what happens in society when suddenly, over night, almost everyone loses the ability to sleep.
The blurb says: after six days of absolute sleep deprivation, psychosis will set in. After four weeks the body will die. In the interim, panic ensues and a bizarre new world arises in which those previously on the fringes of society take the lead.
When I look around me at the moment I see so many elements of Nod’s hallucinatory chaos and despair.
Nod was written by a bloke called Adrian Barnes (born in Blackpool). In an author’s note at the end of the book entitled ‘My cancer is as strange as my fiction’ he confides that as the book approached publication, he was diagnosed with an aggressive brain tumour.
He says, ‘As both the disease and my novel progressed I began to notice eerie similarities between the two, even down to the physical similarity between the eye on the book’s cover and an image of the tumour itself, with its vein-like tendrils spreading out across my brain […] I began to see the end of everything. I was going to slowly lose the people I love, as Paul [the protagonist] did. Insomnia made the world insane to Paul, just as my damaged brain has made the world insane to me.’
In the final paragraph of the novel, the character Paul says:
So this is my final entry. Time to say goodbye to it all, to the world and all of the words I’ve loved so much. Goodbye to it all.
I go to my bed and lie down flat on my back.
Goodbye to chocolate and puppies and hard ons and old running shoes and used books and Christmas morning and crisp newspapers and babies and Coca Cola and sunburned skin and white cotton sheets and bad moods and late night eating and high speed internet and Charlie Brown and ice cream and Beatle music and Beach Boys harmonies and fruit smoothies and thrift stores and black and white photos and favourite books and cold beer and snow storms and heavy rain and meals in restaurants and arriving and departing and exhaustion and the need to piss and tiredness and bicycles and cars and kisses on the neck and stretching and arguments and water and salt and painting and shade and Dickensian waifs and waxy pine needles and hot sand and the smell of cedar and every line Shakespeare ever wrote and shaving and sore muscles and crunching ice cubes and mail boxes and popcorn in movie theatres and pay cheques and the smell of limes and
But what has this got to do with the mix of music below?
Just a feeling.
Marcus Hamblett – Vibraphone Piece
Raphael Doyle – I Come From Ireland
myageisdigital – Vanish
New Tutenkhamen – Tutankhamen Theme
Jospeh Malik – Love Bound
Chrysta Bell & David Lynch – Swing With Me
Isabelle Mayereau – Orange Bleu
Penguin Cafe – Chapter
Jon Hassell – Dreaming
Corinna Repp – Release Me
Comments by Abigail Ward