A Life’s Arc in an Instrumental Piece

Whatever David Gilmour’s thoughts were during the creative process, Pink Floyd’s instrumental composition “Terminal Frost” (1988) is expressive — in its musical narrative — of the arc of a man’s life over its natural stages.

The piece begins tentatively, evoking the delicate trials of childhood with each instrument testing its power. Virile youth bursts on recklessly at 2:00 and its harmonies crescendo at 2:45 with the saxophone solo. Those are a man’s best years, the intersection of peak strength and emergent maturity. Some men give up at twenty. Donald Trump’s peak years are right now, at seventy.

By 3:10, reflections toward wisdom begin but there is much more left to be done. Reaching his contemplative years, a man asks himself: did I give the important things everything I had? And what more can I do? After 4:20 the amplitude ebbs, yet the instruments are as familiar as they were at the beginning. Then the strains settle toward contemplation and peace, until shortly ahead of judgment only soft echoes remain.

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41 thoughts on “A Life’s Arc in an Instrumental Piece

  1. If this much meaning resides in Floyd’s instrumentals, wait until Debussy’s truly reckoned with!

  2. Pingback: A Life’s Arc in an Instrumental Piece | Reaction Times

  3. I was at a concert the other night and the two guys behind me kept talking about David Gilmour, Pink Floyd, and something about an airplane.

  4. Here’s something a GenXer has over you all spring chicken Millennials – I saw Pink Floyd live while in junior high at the (now non-existent) Miami Orange Bowl…in the rain. I was too young to be there, older sisters do that sort of thing, but it made all future concerts stale by comparison. (Well, except maybe slam dancing to GBH at Cameo Theater, but that was more performance art ;))

  5. OT – Anyone familiar with David Foster Wallace? I see many of his premonitions playing themselves out to a T — lots in Infinite Jest, but some of his short work is much more prophetic. I enjoyed Infinite Jest, but it fails the criteria of a masterpiece : would one ever re-read it? I’d say you can count the people who’ve read it multiple times on two hands. It’s hard for me to respect men who annihilate themselves in the face of danger or despair. This fails the Saxon Standard.

  6. Most experienced nationalists find they have to turn to the 1980s or earlier to find anything they like in music or film. I’ve experienced that also, PA.

    It is very important for WNs to get out of 2016 mentally. This isn’t a white time or a white country anymore. One can’t draw much inspiration from this time.

  7. Most experienced nationalists find they have to turn to the 1980s or earlier to find anything they like in music or film. I’ve experienced that also, PA.

    Seeing the recent previews for Ben Hur just makes me laugh. I just can’t believe we are seeing yet another movie with Morgan Freeman as the numinous negro. It’s nauseatingly formulaic but Hollywood doesn’t seem to care at all.

  8. I agree about the 80s and 2016. A way to look at it though is that we’re in a cultural night. In Falling Down, Michael Douglas’s character made a comparison to Apollo 13 going around the moon and currently being on its dark side, cut off from radio contact. Good metaphor for our present time, cut off from our own identity.

    The ubiquity of Blacks in incongruous roles is so over the top that it’s a joke.

    As to pop music, my favorite era is hard rock from late 80s-early 90s and grunge, but first half of the 80s had some gems, lots of very nice one hit wonders. Current music I like (other than SWPL’ish country like Isbell is Foo Fighters and Muse. Muse’s “Invincible” is great. Lots of overt red pill lyrics, intended our way or not.

  9. That’s just one example of the degradation in art. You can’t watch a screen today without a mino being all over it.

    I liked Morgan Freeman as a nigger-pimp in “Street Smart.” It was a much more fitting role.

  10. I’m still amused by my own quip about how race is portrayed in Breaking Bad:

    Whites are complicated
    Injuns are gentle
    Mexicans are scumbags
    Blacks are oncologists

  11. One has to be as careful with one’s media consumption as the food he eats.

    Too much modern media is toxic to the white man. A WN has to mostly stick to media where whites are the hero, which means pre-1992.

    The comparison is exact. Modern media has alot more stimulants in it; they use alot more camera cuts, everything is faster, more senses engaged. It is highly processed, like crack cocaine.

  12. Muse is a decent example of the spirit appropriating mass tech and keeping within somewhat subservient bounds. They work entrancing lights playing live like P Floyd did, that sort of thing. They nonetheless ape a particular quality of oblivion that’s too artificially frenetic for my liking. In their striving to transcend spectacle ‘as such,’ they only become confinedly linear in a rather womanly, romantically-manic way. “Our time is running out!!” etc. And forget about actually understanding their lyrics without having to read them elsewhere than their electronically-muscled clamor. My favorite: again, perhaps their only instrumental — ‘Bedroom Acoustics.’

  13. They described Gus Fring as “Italian” though, at some point. I guess kinda the same way that the “tanned German” shot up that shopping mall in Munich last week.

  14. Muse had a big fiasco with Glenn Beck using their music, but they claim to not understand (or want to understand) American politics.

  15. ***It is highly processed, like crack cocaine.***

    The yayo of entertainment is very commonly laced with garbage beginning around 1800.

  16. “Most experienced nationalists find they have to turn to the 1980s or earlier to find anything they like in music or film. I’ve experienced that also, PA.”

    I bet the WN’s in their 20s and 30s haven’t ‘experienced as much’ that widely. Every generation finds a rational explanation for why today’s this-or-than is so inferior to that of yesteryear.

    Getting older is a bitch but is something that really is universal and cuts across race and gender. 🙂

  17. Too much modern media is toxic to the white man. A WN has to mostly stick to media where whites are the hero, which means pre-1992.

    Actually, it’s getting Taboo to have any entertainment that is too exclusively white.

    Even Downton Abbey has a black character.

    That movie “Boyhood” from 2014 got the highest-ever rating on Rotten Tomatoes but caught all types of flack for having no black people. I guess they should’ve has one sister run off to become a stripper and have a mulatto child out of Wedlock or they should’ve had Morgan Freeman as the sage old advisor passing secret life wisdom to the white kids as they grew up amongst their white family in Texas.

  18. “I have to admit that Giancarlo Esposito was quite believable as Gus Fring, though.”

    Here’s my fave clip of ‘Gus’ BEFORE he was ‘Gus.”

    Bonus quiz points: name the young, then-unknown black comedian seen behind Giancarlo’s right shoulder in the later half of the clip.

  19. p.s.@PA:

    I meant to post the Giancarlo quip in the previous ‘wisdom pt.4’ post, therefore following the ‘no O.T.’s”-in-current-posts policy.

    My bad,, but not my intention; so pls feel free to move or delete.

  20. ***…then-unknown black comedian seen behind Giancarlo’s right shoulder…***

    Martin Lawrence is legit in my eyes because of one of his lines that deeply resonated w/ me—

    “Life is short, man. Ride this mothafucka ’till the wheels come off.”

    Or something to that effect. I ran track in college alongside a guy that was a spitting image of him. Smoked him every time.

  21. “Life is short, man. Ride this mothafucka ’till the wheels come off.”

    Well yeah, black folks always live by the “get rich or die tryin'” code. It’s what makes them pretty crappy as neighbors and fellow citizens.

  22. I confess to living by this code, minus the drive-byes and rented Escalades with 24s/spinners. This was also the Gold Rush, Columbus, and Hernán Cortés in a nutshell

  23. “Current music I like (other than SWPL’ish country like Isbell is Foo Fighters and Muse.”

    PA, have you listened to Old 97s? Another alt-country band, but they sing mostly about getting wasted and shit. Recommend starting with “Blame It On Gravity” album.

    Representative tune:

  24. @PA, peterike, et.al,

    Damn P.A.,

    We’re already on tangent here —–but i have a Old ’97s tale from a trip to Dallas in ’03 or so and a GREAT Ray Davies personal anecdote.

    But: I’ve blown my wad in re. to the pop fluff past in recent weeks. And I insist on remaining principled and in good form in that regard, dammit!

    As for Mus and other aggro-angst-alt-metal-rock-etc.-ad-infinitum, blah-blah…… Not my cup of tea but i know there’s various quality levels there; i tend to put a ‘corn-on-the-macabre’ label on that stuff too quickly, i readily confess.

  25. “Martin Lawrence is legit in my eyes because of one of his lines that deeply resonated w/ me—”

    Ha! That’s pretty good; i wasn’t totally sure til i looked hard at that part of the clip. Didn’t know that til i saw it now; it’s funnyhow these bigtime ny directors go out of their way to use the same actors, forming their signature ensembles, i.e. Lee, Scorsese, and lesser-knowns such as Ed Burns.

  26. EPG: “They nonetheless ape a particular quality of oblivion that’s too artificially frenetic for my liking. In their striving to transcend spectacle ‘as such,’ they only become confinedly linear in a rather womanly, romantically-manic way. “

    That perhaps is how I would articulate my ambiguity and somewhat dismissive attitude toward a lot of that aggro-genre rock;….Well, not ‘dismissive,’ as I readily admit my predisposition toward that rock……. Maybe there’s a core racial divide there; it’s hard for NAMs to get that, umm, existentially angsty ——- their aggro-pop postures tend to be more practical, as in ‘ ‘mo money, mo’ bling, etc.’ lol!!

  27. “‘Rock ‘n Roll’ — The most brutal, ugly, desperate, vicious form of expression it has been my misfortune to hear.” -Frank Sinatra

    Looking back, I’m compelled to add hip-hop, techno, and most of jazz to this. I’ve tangoed a bit with them all. Final verdict: degenerate. I should have stayed true to my initial instincts as a small child. What would Sinatra think of Marilyn Manson? He’d be embarrassed that he didn’t stick strictly to the dealings of the Mafia.

  28. Alt-righters blame “the poz,” “the elites,” “eskimoes” for their personal failures and squelched hopes. Truth is, it was The Rolling Stones/Beatles. Look at what they do when Trump cops their “music.” No artist would do that. Long live Handel

  29. The democratization of the arts was initiated by Mick Jagger. I dare not say he “lit” the confusion. He played with microphones, yet identified with fire. Scriabin lived in the flames, and wouldn’t touch a microphone even if you offered to pay him a couple billion to.

  30. These things are probably cyclical though. Can’t the Good Lord think of a more interesting pattern for his children to be fated to enact over and over throughout eternity? PA I apologize for this t-daddy-esque stream of comms.

  31. My favorite singer is still Tammy Wynette. Here’s Tammy rejecting feminism (from the 1971 album “We Sure Can Love Each Other”) with the song “Don’t Liberate Me(Love Me)” :

  32. Here’s Tammy Wynette singing about the Antebellum South in 1976 on the album “You and Me” with the song “Dixieland(You Will Never Die)” :

  33. PA, the bad guys in Breaking Bad are these:

    Mr. White
    The White Family
    Mr. Pink Man

    The good guys are the Jew DEA agent and his wife mouth bass faced Jew wife.

    The newspaper in the show says “Feds Attack the White Family.”

    Lolzozozoz

    Only antiwhite propaganda in a popular show worse than Breaking Bad is Walking Dead, a ridiculous portrayal of diversity squads and white bad guys.

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