In the 1970s, Punk was on the rise, buoyed by the credo “Learn three chords, start a band”. Throbbing Gristle responded: “Why so many?”
Stephen O’Malley has taken this line of thinking to its logical conclusion: He has formed numerous bands and built an illustrious career, all with a single note.
Now the power of that note has transcended the very air which once dutifully transmitted it into the ears of the faithful, transcended into the world of the physical, the tactile, as energy made matter. Ladies and gentlemen, The Note you know, The Note you love, The Note that fixates your reptilian subconscious, reborn, as a pair of jeans.
O’Malley entered into a creative partnership with Norway’s favourite xenophobia-themed denim artisans Anti-Sweden to make this rebirth possible.
To welcome The Note writ new, a discrete ceremony was held in central Oslo at which only five video cameras were present. Rightfully attended only by fellow creatives, the mood was set by a visionary performance by O’Malley. Bedecked in the tools of his old trade, he let ring The Note, long had it been missed, via the propulsion of a metal wire through a magnetic field, and lo, The Note filled the air, heard for the last time. For in this last outing for The Note, the transformation did occur, lights dimmed, crowds hushed, The Note seemingly faded from the ears. But it had only attained a new, higher form. Once decibels, now denim, The Note hung before us on clothes hangers, ours for $300.
Some didn’t believe it was The Note: they cried malfeasance; they raved that The Note had been secreted away; this corporeal garm was mere distraction; bait and switch; a window of diversion allowing The Note to escape its Sisyphean life.
That was before some statuesque Scandinavian stepped forth from the shadows and began to undress: long golden locks tumbled past non-conventional piercings and sic (sic) tats as clothing fell away. Strong Scandinavian hands slid the slacks from the hanger and slipped them past socks and shins, squeezed over shapely buttocks, toned by years of Telemark skiing. As the figure turned, a gasp from the crowd, the doubters dropped to their knees, for, scorched onto the bum pockets, was the mark of The Note.
There could be no denying this eloquent proof of the persistence of The Note, reverberating in its new textile state. And the crowds turned to O’Malley, himself metamorphosed, holding no longer his guitar, but now the tools of his new trade, the tools he would require to tame The Note in its new form: a tape-measure, a selvedge loom, and a copy of French Vogue.
The crowd got it. I mean they really got it. An uncreative mind might mistake these amazing scenes for the latest step in a facile branding exercise, the pseudo-embodiment of the aesthetics and values of an entire artform, brazen self-promotion packed into a design so risible at its price tag that every scintilla of cycnicism ever entertained feels instantly vindicated. But the crowd saw past these heathen notions, to the truth, that O’Malley’s genius lies not in design, or creativity, or originality, or sincerity, but in his unique ability to tame The Note, and his prescient timing in releasing The Note. He is the keeper and gateway to the note, a profound and deep notion, that can now be acknowledged and displayed, stretched atop your buttocks, for a mere $300.