Mark Van Fleet (Sword Heaven, Face Place, etc.)
1. What have you been listening to lately?
Epic mid winter home improvement painting sessions means Country music LP comps, lots of YES (all periods), lots of CSN&Y, Leonard Cohen, Ray Charles, various soft rock LP's, etc. I really like the newest Haves n Thirds tape. Jen (my wife) and I have been listening to a lot of Tangerine Dream. I also think that Rusted Shut 12" EP on Dull Knife is amazing.
2. Have you been to any interesting concerts recently?
I try to get out to most shows, but the best thing I've seen so far in 2009 was My Left Uterus from Tampa FL.
3. Can you name a favorite film, or two (or a television program), from the last few months?
Just watched the final season of The WIRE on dvd. Jen and I watched all five seasons in the past year. Also, we watched the 4th season of LOST in like two weekends.
4. Have you read a good book lately?
I read The Road by Cormac McCarthy last week, which I thought was great. Pretty bleak book. Great simple dialogue. The son must ask the father twenty times whether they are about to die. Most of the book is Hemingway-esque description, and most of that description is about scavenging for food, or trying to make camp in the sleet and rain. Still, in all that description, there is a really powerful connection between the father and the son. It's tender too. Bleak and tender. I've kind of been thinking a lot recently about post apocalyptic sorts of scenarios, and I just borrowed a VHS copy of The Final Combat (aka Le Dernier Combat) which I haven't seen in probably ten years, but watched a bunch of times when I was in High School. Otherwise, I read magazines about sailing (like Cruising World and Latitudes and Attitudes) and almost never read books. That was the first book in a while.
5. Have you attended any recent art shows worth mentioning?
I work at an art museum, but sadly, I haven't seen much that really blew me away. The huge Warhol show at the museum I work at is pretty good though. I liked the After Nature show I saw at the New Museum in NYC in the fall.
6. Do you have any current obsessions of note?
7. Please tell me what recordings, projects (any medium), etc., you are working on right now, if anything
Finalizing a new Sword Heaven album (recorded in late October, mixed over the last month, hopefully to be released at some point this year) and Aaron and I are writing some new songs. I'm doing a project with the guy I borrowed Le Dernier Combat from called Group Birth. Somehow, it's informed by ideas about the Apocalypse. Face Place has not practiced in a half a year, but we talk about it sometimes. Face Place will be on two vinyl splits that will come out this year though. I've been thinking it might be cool to do some Face Place-esque collaborations. Maybe as part of a larger electro acoustic sort of group. I have some other ideas for bands/ formations which may never get anywhere. Maybe with Ryan Jewell. I formed a scum rock band called Bath House a few years ago which still exists though we've only played like 4 shows in 2 years. We were asked yesterday to play another one. We've talked about trying to record a 7" or something. Basement rock n roll sessions continue with old friends as they always will. I've been doing a print zine called Married Life. It's a quarterly, and the 4th issue will be out in the next month or so I think. I have all the material, just need to layout, print, and assemble.
8. What do you hope to accomplish this year?
I'd like to tour a bit. Hit some spots we haven't been to for a while, but it probably won't be real extensive. Release that Sword Heaven album. I guess I'm going to remodel my bathroom. Sail a lot this summer. Maybe work on some solo stuff?
9. Is there anything else that you would like to mention, announce, or hype?
I think I covered it already.