January 04, 2010

TEB Music in Werner Herzog film "Fata Morgana" (1971) - Part 2.

After ten minutes from the beginning of the film, Glen Sweeney's tablas introduce "Ghetto Raga" while Sahara desert footages fill the screen.
Upon the music, Lotte Eisner's voice reads the beginning of ancient sacral text "Popol Vuh" (the full English version is available on the Web at http://www.meta-religion.com/World_Religions/Ancient_religions/Central_america/popol_vuh.htm)  - a sort of obsession to Werner Herzog (that used often German group Popol Vuh for his soundtracks...). 
The Lotte Eisner reading (originally in German language) it's about the creation of the Earth and the Man:

"There was only immobility and silence in the darkness, in the night. Only the Creator, the Maker, Tepeu, Gucumatz, the Forefathers, were in the water surrounded with light. They were hidden under green and blue feathers, and were therefore called Gucumatz. By nature they were great sages and great thinkers. In this manner the sky existed and also the heart of E Alom, literally, those who conceive and give birth, e Qaholom, those who beget the children. Heaven, which is the name of God and thus He is called. Then came the word. Tepeu and Gucumatz came together in the darkness, in the night, and Tepeu and Gucumatz talked together. They talked then, discussing and deliberating; they agreed, they united their words and their thoughts. Then while they meditated, it became clear to them that when dawn would break, man must appear. Then they planned the creation, and the growth of the trees and the thickets and the birth of life and the creation of man. Thus it was arranged in the darkness and in the night by the Heart of Heaven who is called Huracán. The first is called Caculhá Huracán. The second is ChipiCaculhá. The third is Raxa-Caculhá. And these three are the Heart of Heaven. Then Tepeu and Gucumatz came together; then they conferred about life and light, what they would do so that there would be light and dawn, who it would be who would provide food and sustenance. Thus let it be done! Let the emptiness be filled! Let the water recede and make a void, let the earth appear and become solid; let it be done. Thus they spoke. Let there be light, let there be dawn in the sky and on the earth! There shall be neither glory nor grandeur in our creation and formation until the human being is made, man is formed. So they spoke. Then the earth was created by them. So it was, in truth, that they created the earth. Earth! they said, and instantly it was made. Like the mist, like a cloud, and like a cloud of dust was the creation, when the mountains appeared from the water; and instantly the mountains grew. Only by a miracle, only by magic art were the mountains and valleys formed; and instantly the groves of cypresses and pines put forth shoots together on the surface of the earth. And thus Gucumatz was filled with joy, and exclaimed: "Your coming has been fruitful, Heart of Heaven; and you, Huracán, and you, Chipi-Caculhá, Raxa-Caculhá!" "Our work, our creation shall be finished," they answered"

An great, impressive sequence, with a wonderful music played by an extraordinary group, in a really miracolous and rare interplay:  the modal Paul Minns improvisations on oboe and the iterative, vivid violin by Richard Coff, gems of one of the best track ever, a modern Western raga to foretell the end of Western civilization... A strongly poetic & political Werner Herzog film with a touching TEB cameo.

(to be continued?)

no©2010 Luca Ferrari

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