A text inspired of the atmosphere
of iST's CD (buy it)
Bleed : Lying down in bed, Astrid feels
her lover hands firmly and inexorably descending from her face towards
her throat. Chained to his kisses, to his embrace, Astrid smiles
at him. The determined hands stop at her throat. A vermilion trickle
flows from Astridís nose. Sheíd like to say to her lover that a
toy doesnít bleed but her voice is choked. The bed whirls round
in all directions and falls unrestrained, endlessly at a frantic
speed. Not far from there, a narrow platform, where the three members
of iST play, is doing the same thing. Involuntarily, Astrid slips
off the bed taking the sheet with her and uses it as a parachute.
Before long she lands on an earth thatís soft like jelly. She gets
up and tries to flee but the guardian blocks her way and from his
deformed face comes a word : "Kapu", in a harsh groan.
Astrid tries to calm him down by giving him the silk sheet. The
guardian raises his threatening arms. Astrid doesnít stay long.
The guardian puts the softness of the silk Astrid gave him to his
16 mm : Astrid takes refuge in a movie
theater. As she enters, someone gives her an empty bottle. She would
like to understand, but she doesnít stay too long and she is now
part of the audience. An old black and white movie is showing. Astrid
sits down without thinking and starts to stare at the screen. The
scratchy film touches the still tender hearts. IST is the accompaniment.
The scene shows a couple pulling each other close, like magnets
of opposite polarity. Tears run down Astridís cheeks. They flow
past her trembling lips, roll on her chin and fill the bottle she
holds in her hands. The kiss is imminent. She cannot refrain from
shouting. We receive this frozen cry like a knife blade. Rewinding
back to the moment when the couple pulls together. Astrid, shouting,
runs towards the exit. Outside, the guardian obstructs the exit.
"Kapu". Astrid offers him the bottle filled with her tears.
The guardian smells it and pulls a face - revealing his filed teeth.
Astrid goes back into the audience, falls on her knees, closes her
eyes and puts her fingers in her ears. Nothing is changing. The
scene is forever in her head, now. Astridís cry, like a multitude
of sewing needles, chills the audience to the bone. The guardian
plays, like a child, watching at his fingers growing bigger when
he looks with amazed eyes at his hairy fingers through the bottle
Drag Race Face : Now, Astrid, like some
Paniolo, rides a roaring customized horse. Along the way, the big
tires burn up the road. Impossible to turn back. A spark reaches
the side of the road where iST plays. Caught in the fire, iST remain
unperturbed and continue their frenzied music. Astrid runs towards
her lover, to the love he gave her. She never suspected such high
intensity love possible. Astridís bowels are still trembling. None
of her previous lovers had loved her like this. Her brain is burnt
forever. Her love is a Poka-Lolo multiplied over and over. The road
is infinite. The leaves slap Astridís face. She accelerates. The
needle of the speedometer is at its maximum. The glass break on
the speedometer. Prisoner of her obsession. Astrid doesnít see that
the road stops. Does she know that sheís falling ? No. It will soon
be the end of her run. Look out ! Astrid falls into a taut sheet
which hung vainly out to dry in this marshy country. The motorbike
was not as lucky, itís lying down on the ground giving its last
dying breaths, after which it is swallowed by the quicksand. Astrid
is face to face with the guardian. Astrid, although she can say
"Kapu" too, isnít against new experiences. Right now,
however, sheís sickened but she hasnít really the choice. She comes
to him offering him her body. The guardian doesnít know what to
do with this unknown nudity that he finds repugnant. So, he chases
Lemming Song : Astrid, exhausted, finds
refuge in the shadow of a hillock in which a colony of lemmings
goes about its daily life. A lemming stops digging, an unusual thing
for a lemming. An incredible rush appears in the line of lemmings
blindly following him. The troublemaker addresses his followers.
Follow me my friends. Good lemmings that you are, I will lead you
to the sea. Go if you want to. The reflections of the straw-coloured
moon on the sea will blind us from the danger. Get out of our way
or get back to work. My friends, I canít live without you. Doesn't
the course of the sun enlighten your mind ? Take the joystick of
your own life ! Donít wait any longer. Follow me to the sea. iST
plays on the mound. The bass drum is a wheel, spinning with the
effect of the little lemmingsí legs. Our adventurous lemming, alone,
finds himself on a cymbal. The whack of a drumstick catapults him
onto Astrid who is asleep. At once, Astrid leaves the dream. Close
by, squatting on a rock, an imposing dark form with two piercing
eyes discover her. In one bound, the guardian is next to her. Astrid
gives him the lemming which is still stunned, and she tells him
that the lemming is good to eat. The guardian screams. Astrid runs
away. The guardian fondles the lemming. The bulky eyes of the monster
meet the small eyes of the animal. Something happens between them.
The guardian puts the lemming on his shoulder.
Mars Hall : Astrid leans over towards the
painter. She plunges a finger into the open wound from which blood
bubbles away. New feeling. Strange feeling. Astrid takes pastels
and some Ingres paper. The trickles of blood she paints are compact,
thick. They stand like elegant trees of a forest streaming out from
an earth that had no choice but to generate them. Astrid found her
lover again. She remembers that. You are with a woman. Another woman.
As beautiful as me. You didnít notice me. I follow you secretly.
Elevator. You go up to see the panorama. Empty hall at this hour.
Red Mars and its tiring scenery of aggregates. Its sky is red also
but dirty as a muddy veil of mist than nothing ever breaks through
or washes away. Languorous love kiss. Suddenly you move away from
her, your mouth is covered with blood. I donít understand. The girl
falls down with a dull thud. You stand close to her and you look
at her. I donít understand anything. You turn over. You didnít seem
to have noticed this painter who fixed the landscape on canvas.
I did. You go to him, determined. Itís at this time that I see the
knife in your hand. I stay in the shadow, paralysed. Time goes by.
I am alive. You didnít see me. Astrid considers her finished pastel.
The different layered views seem to give the feeling of rising upward
towards the top from where blood springs. A crude but diffuse light
hurls us into the heart of the scene. I remember being passionately
fond of a European forest. iST played there. Called elevator is
just coming. The guardian stands in front of Astrid who offers him
her red pastel stick. He licks it and spits. Astrid goes to the
backstairs, climbing seventy five floors while repeating the whole
time : "Bunderbos".
Danís Chest : How is it that the guardian
is also on Mars and should he know Danís secrets ? those are the
questions that come to Astridís mind as sheís climbing the last
flight of stairs. At the top of the stairs, a hand violently pins
Astrid against the wall. Hello Dan. Happy to see you again. Dan
is in fetus position on the bed. Astrid is close to him. Dan, I
found your trace, your room. I enter to wait for you. A chest, so
big that someone can stand inside, made of rough and mahogany wood,
interests me. I open it. I slip inside. The chest closes. I see
a light near my feet. A hidden door. A stair goes down. I go down
it. I arrive to what seems to me to be another planet which could
be Mars. I see you at once. Curled up in the bed, Dan gives a sickly
cry while listening to Astridís story. He knows whatís coming, what
heís done. The bed slowly keeps on drifting on the mirror-lake.
It wanders, like "Les enerves de Jumieges" on the Seine
river, at the mercy of the waves. The band iST plays on a thin small
island. Astrid asks Dan to stare right in her face. Dan is in pain.
He chose a painful short cut to live his life. Astrid bends Dan
to the surface of the mirror-lake to show him who he is now. Dan
falls down. He breaks the mirror-lake as if he was a hammer. Dan
doesnít reappear. Astrid calls, holding out her two hands towards
the gaping hole. Astrid takes a piece of broken mirror and while
hoping to see Dan again, inspects it. Some drops of blood bead on
it. My friend, my friend. A mass seems to come close to the surface.
Astrid is delighted. But itís the guardian who appears. He clings
to the boat-bed, and catches Dan knife. Astrid confronts him with
the breaking of the mirror. Frightened by his own image, the guardian
rushes out into the black water. Astrid is alone in this lugubrious
scenery. Only a tiny cracking breaks the silence. Itís the mirror-lake
which forms again.
Butterfly Species # 42343 : Astrid, hidden,
watches all the guardianís actions on her camcorder screen. Close
up shot of the guardian who sharpens a piece of wood with his new
knife, in the light of some glowing embers. Wide angle shot of the
lagoon and the outline of a sinister fragment of the moon. Dan still
hasnít reappeared. Something, other than the usual bats, is moving
in this landscape. Astrid focuses. Close up shot of the object.
Itís a mothman, itís flight lumbering and miserable, that moves
towards the guardianís fire. Astrid switches on the brilliant light
of her camcorder. The mothman diverts his trajectory and lands close
to Astrid. They take cover. The guardian, intrigued, is already
in the zone. Astrid points out to the mothman, whose name is David,
the guitar which he has on his back. David forces himself to tell
his story. Iíve come back from the country of the light. I manage
well with my guitar and I have there a kind of success. Over there,
you have to start by going through the rite of selling your soul.
To play my music, I had to take off my wings because theyíre too
dark. Hollywood sells dreams and bursts the dreams. In majestic
wings beats, David carries Astrid towards a coffee shop where his
girlfriend is delighted to see him again. However, she knows she
wonít join her David in Hollywood. Forward travelling shot of the
small stage of the coffee shop where iST plays. The few customers
have their back turned towards them. They look at the latest fashionable
pop video on a screen. David, your hopes melted away with the sun.
You dug and filled three grooves. So what ? A sapphire will never
caress them, a diamond will never enrich them. Your girlfriend wants
to live here with you but can you accept this idea ? David gives
his guitar to Astrid who refuses to take it. David insists. Astrid
is outside with the guitar facing the guardian. She smiles at the
sight of him. If she didnít meet him right now, she would have been
extremely surprised. Cut.
Massacre At Central High : Astrid comes
to the Central High village. She hears a tragedy has just taken
place. A wave of emotion has unfurled on the country. Poor children.
During the break, two children wander from the school complex. They
are Tieman and Skyman. In ambush, they spy on nasty monsters coming
from another galaxy who develop their massive destruction weapons,
and which hold the band iST prisoner. Tieman and Skyman counted
them. There are twenty three. The children exchange knowing smiles
and, like super-heroes, take their fluorescent ray laser guns out
of their capes. This monster with tentacular arms and this one with
the dusky hair have had it. Thatís two less, twenty and one are
left. The cyclops dwarf is agonizing in turn. Twenty left. The general
panic among the monsters doesnít allow them to react efficiently.
Still three less. Among the assailants, victory is assured. Suddenly,
members of the evil coalition insidiously attack the two children.
Severely manhandled by sinister, enraged monsters, they are disarmed
and led to the headquarters located behind the moon. These two children
wonít see Central High again for a long time. Among ammunition and
cases left by the two children, Astrid picks up an half-eaten package
of cupcakes and hangs it over its shoulder. Three seconds are enough
so that the guardian appears and takes it. Without turning back,
Astrid joins the schoolyard down below where the charming portrait
of the six souls which taken before their time precociously is already
hung on the front of the building.
Spaceship : Astrid walks along the banks
of the mirror-lake. Like a ripe fruit, Dan falls, at her feet, from
a tree where he had taken refuge. The reunion is hot. Of course,
they need it and they had it ! Dan is a different lover, as if his
soul had been washed during his bath in the mirror-lake. Astrid
has everything she could wish. She explains to Dan that her spaceship
is very close to here, but itís on the guardianís territory, and
he forbids her access. Astrid points out a star in the sky. There
is a planet which is dedicated to art, sex, music and magic near
this star. From here, that star seems rather cold and bloody. But
beyond the atmosphere of this cursed planet, this star shows its
real face to its sincere friends. It will radiate thousand bright
fires if you want to join me. Both move towards the spaceship. On
the way, they meet David and his girlfriend. They invite them to
leave their clothes, to leave all that reminds them of this world
and to follow them for a new star. The guardian blocks the way to
these four stark naked humans. Astridís nudity, which has been twice
exposed to him, interests the guardian. But this time, Astrid isnít
having any of it. She offers him a daisy that Dan had put in her
hair. The guardian lets them go through towards the spaceship. Astrid
looks at her star once again. A long way to reach this galaxy. Astrid
sees this dirty-looking sky bursting with a thousand stars. She
shrugs her shoulders. Or even this star of third kind. The guardian
smells the daisy, and murmurs, a tear in his eye : "Mahalo.
Mahalo nui loa". In front of the band iST, the guardian dances
voluptuously, holding the flower delicately as if it was a person.
Silence : The airlock of the spaceship
is closed on Astrid and her friends.
Drag Race Face (Astrid, solo, acoustic) : Astrid
gets the spaceship ready to fire off . The guardian and the band
iST wave them bye-bye. The vibration of the engines shakes the spaceship.
The passengers are stuck in their seats. Astrid holds her hand out
to Dan. Now she needs his love, as the most incredible that she
has experienced. But Dan turns down her wishes because heís trying
with all his might to withstand the violence of the force thatís
crushing him. The spaceship starts to pull itself away off the ground.
The plants in the marsh cling obstinately to the spaceship, which
finally succeeds taking off with a jolt. Astrid gets on to Dan again,
but he still neglects her need. The spaceship reaches the thick
crust of the sky made of a viscous consistency, difficult to penetrate.
The spaceship begins to rip the surface. The penetration is laborious.
Astrid gives an acceleration. The sky, in reaction, pushes back
the spaceship. Astrid begins the operation again. An opening has
been made, the drag will be less significant this time. Indeed,
the spaceship begins to leave this sticky membrane. But suddenly
its advance is blocked. From the marsh, a plant still holds it back
at the level of the spare tank. Now, it pulls the spaceship towards
it. The spaceship moves back. Astrid wishes that Dan would take
her in his arms. Dan doesnít think of doing that. Astrid pushes
flat out the engines. No change is noticed because the plant branches
out and for this reason the power of its hold increases. The spaceship
pushes further into the sky. The sky reacts. It spits the spaceship
far from away it. Now the spaceship swims towards that star. Or
Modern Love (David Bowie) : Three passengers of the spaceship are already in hibernation. Astrid has orders to verify by herself the validity of the last parameters. She remembers the clip which was shown in the coffee shop, over there on this planet that she sees moving away so quickly through the porthole. She takes her twelve-string guitar, and holds close to her her Pignose lap slide, her percussions and her organ. She begins to play all these instruments and mix them with parsimony, the acoustic way being the Master. She plays for a sleeping Dan and her friends. She plays for herself. The more we remember a happy and restless Bowie with his wonderfully light Modern Love, the more Astrid send us the shivers, as her Modern Love is a ballad in which the modern love isnít obtained without being hurt. The pain ensuing from these wounds, although itís held back, hurts us too. Astrid, I bleed. Her sad glance is amused. She opens a bottle of wine. The contents spread throughout the cabin in multiple volatile clusters. Astrid has fun gathering them with her mischievous lips. The spaceship moves away going towards that star.
Thanks to David's checker/arranger