Surely everyone has got hold of the King Midas Sound album now? So you’ve all been enjoying Roger’s vocals and lyrics to the full for your winter soundtrack.
Perhaps it’s also time to curl up by the fire with a good book?
Adventures in 3D (Lubin and Kleyner, 2002)
A collection of short stories. Some nice themes including someone being scared of splitting up with their girlfriend because she is a sixth dan in karate, making your own crop circles, office politics, blood fetishes, weed dealing. I think it’s really well written – not overtly “extreme” despite some of the subject matter. Some nice wry observations.
Suitcase (Waterways, 2004)
His first collection of poetry. You know how I really don’t get on well with poetry, right? Well Roger’s stuff is the exception (along with Tim Wells). I guess this might be because he covers topics which resonate with me or because there is a subcultural/sonic association. Or maybe I am (gasp!) simply getting into poetry.
It helps a lot to be able to hear Roger’s voice in your head when reading this, I think. (Same as William Burroughs, innit). I like the powerful quietness this book conjurs up.
Lots of well observed, well crafted poems about girls, growing up, Trinidad, England. There is nothing extraneous here – nothing flowery, just precise evocative words making pictures for you.
“Uncle Robert’s letter to my Father” is an incredibly powerful tale of a young Caribbean man who happens to fancy other men.
Suckle (Waterways, 2009)
His latest collection of poems. Similar themes but maybe more emphasis on music:
“In 1984 my sister was serious about dancing.
She was the only girl dancer in the Emperor’s
dance crew. Probably the only girl breaker
Trinidad, but that wasn’t enough for her…”
or how about:
“Uncle Clyde had acquired a collection
of old calypsonians on shellac 45s.
Each started with a pr0longed scratch
and hiss. As the orchestras kicked in
and the singing hit, you could see him
doing the silliest of made up dances.
Not for my entertainment; that
was what the music made him do…”
(The Urgency of Sound)