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  • Writer's pictureJamie Varley

Unwilling to Stop and Unwilling to Learn



The Album

Trust in the Lifeforce of the Deep Mystery

Trust In The Lifeforce Of The Deep Mystery is like nothing I have ever heard before. It does not fit the confines of genre or even music. As the band’s name suggests, this music is not something that Earth has witnessed before. It’s fit in the current music scene is like a fragment of glittery space debris crash landing in a field of uniform crops spanning until the horizon.

The album is built around the fizzy woodwind musings of Shabaka Hutchings. It slithers around songs like a drunken snake, blatantly disregarding song’s structure or time signature – walking to the beat of its own drum. “Summon the Fire” sees the saxophone stumble off beat and blare out with the cadence of Ol’ Dirty Bastard on a grimy RZA beat.

That doesn’t mean that the backdrops don’t matter – the rest of the band clashes against the saxophone, not wanting to give up ground.

The closest genre this can be classified as is jazz, Comet does a wonderful job shaking off the dated reputation of the genre. It is jazz from an alternate reality where the genre never hit maturity and plateaued but continued to innovate and look forward. It is a welcome reimagining of the art form. It’s as if John Coltrane chugged a bottle of coke before picking up his sax, battling off the carbonated sting in his nose while puffing into his reed.

Lifeforce is deeply refreshing, an inspiration for any genre to shrug off the shackles of rules and precedence to just get crazy. It seemingly came out of nowhere but is built off of centuries of history and art. We’re lucky enough that today’s music scene was in the comet’s course, and we’ll be feeling the aftermath for a long time.

 

The Food



Orange and Coffee-Tinged Steak with Yam Mash

The dish paired with Lifeforce had to be familiar but unexpected, seeing flavours and textures colliding with each other to create a rich and memorable experience.

Step one is find the centerpiece of the meal, something rich and decadent to stand out amidst the conflicting flavours thrown at it. A New York strip does the job.

The three flavours that the steak has to compete with should be well known but never previously experimented with together. They should never overlap, with each enough to carry a meal on its own. The bitter smokiness of coffee grounds hits hard against the crisp sickness of the black pepper, with the orange slicing like a katana through the gravelly flavours presented before it. This dish tastes like each singular taste was thrown together at top speed in the Hadron Super Collider, birthing a brand-new element on the periodic table.

This experience is balanced out with yam mashed potato. They are airy and light but pull on the earthy tones of the potato and the creamy and sour subtleties of the buttermilk. To pull it back to the rest of the meal, the potatoes are topped with whatever coffee, pepper and orange didn’t make it to the main event.


Sprinkle orange zest over the plate for a sharper citrus flavour and an interplanetary feel.

Finally, sit an old-fashioned down to spark a smooth, sweet burn. Cocktails with the main dish are usually a faux pas, but just like the album, rules are thrown out the window for immediate and unexpected pleasure. The slight citrus and vanilla bite and richness of the bourbon tie the meal together while tastefully shattering it apart.

 

The Experience


This experience should light a fire in your belly. It causes a welcome discomfort, with a meal that walks the line between unsettling and satiating. It is an experience so unlike anything else, it seems like it can’t possibly be something from this world.

You are not alone if these descriptions sound unappealing at first. Most things outside of your comfort zone do. There are rules for a reason, because they are proven and provide order, so having an overwhelming mismatch of flavours is not something people traditionally enjoy. Same with the music too – the instruments battle when they should be harmonizing.

Try this to say you tried it, even if you don’t agree with it. Why not? Life is too short to follow the rules.

By forgetting the rules, a certain freedom takes over. It is satisfying to embrace a risk like this experiment poses, and unlike nothing else to see it succeed. This experience shows that it is okay to break the rules. It’s something we should try a bit more often.


So roll your eyes, shake your head, turn away and call me names

I'm okay with that, too proud

Unable to listen, we keep speaking

Moted by blood, unable to notice ourselves

Unable to stop and unwilling to learn


 
 

Recipes

Steak:

Marinate steak in salt, pepper, olive oil and orange juice for 2 hours. Leave your steak out until room temperature.


In a coffee grinder, mix coffee beans and peppercorns into a gravelly like mixture. Pat down steak with paper towel and press mixture into the steak. Grill until medium rare.


Coat with orange zest and serve


Yams:

Boil yams until soft. Drain and return potatoes to the pot. Mix in buttermilk (start small, mix until desired creaminess), salt and pepper, mash.


Old Fashioned:

Place a sugar cube at in your glass. Add two drops of bitters and a splash of club soda, muddle until mixed. Swish the mixture around to line the glass. Place a single ice cube in the glass, add 2oz of bourbon. Garnish with an orange peel.

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