"This city is on my side..."
D. B. Rocca | Parkland, FL United States | 04/05/2004
(3 out of 5 stars)
"First off, let's state for the record that this is a "spoken word" only CD, so those looking for music must look elsewhere.
Jim Carroll is one of my favorite poets, and so I concidered myself lucky to find this CD at my favorite used CD shop. Unlike Carrols other CD's, which are more spoken word and attempts at singing set to music backdrops. Here, Carroll is recorded live in various venues and recites everything from monologue to prose to poetry to amusing anecdotes; now, he's not the best monologuer in the world, but he has a unique cadence and imbues emotion into the sundries he presents.
"Tiny Tortures" is a monologue about an impromptu "performance act," and attacks pretentious artists and critics. Another longer monologue is "The Loss of American Innocence," in which a pre-teens first masturbation is paralleled to the death of John F. Kennedy (believe it or not). "Just Visiting" explores the last thoughts of a bank robber in vivid prose. As with most of the work on the CD, these piece explore sexuality, and how sexuality is an under-current in our everyday lives. Also, the CD is VERY sexually explicit, so be warned.
The stand-outs are still his poems, which reflect the influence of symbolists like Rimbaud. "For Elizabeth" is about a young girl who overdosed on heroine:
This place where I have put you now,
It is a cursed season, an awkward
line, a flawed circle. A snake of fire
devouring what, tomorrow, it will itself become."Praying Mantis" is a great compliment to "Fear of Dreaming," Carroll's selected poems. It's not the best spoken word CD ever made, but you gotta love a man who revises Nietzsche: "What does not kill me only serves to make me sleep until 3:30 the next afternoon.""
Not a toe-tapper!
Seanthompson | 07/14/2006
(3 out of 5 stars)
"no, there's no music on this cd. but the guy's a poet, not a singer! i prefer this to most of the band stuff. then again, i'm a big fan. have been for nearly 20 years. "just visiting" and "loss of am. innocence" are my faves. for completists or carroll uber-fans? noooo! that distinction goes to "pools of mercury".that's how i feel, anyway."