P R E V I O U S L Y I N
The face at the heart of the lightning storm above me snarls with a parody of viciousness. It appears Kurt has a dragon.
‘Calling?’ I guzzle beer on reflex. I’m Spiderfingers and taste is just a memory, 'Next time just text, the whole chainsaw through the brain idea doesn’t quite work for me...’
I down some more alcohol whilst using all my brain power to keep my drinking hand still.
‘It hurts? Sorry man. I’m sorry,’ he says sincerely, ‘what I can do, all this...it’s all still quite new to me.’
Those clear blue eyes that he has, they take in my left fist and the leash clenched within it. And he asks, ‘What’s going on with that?’
His quiet considered timbre is equal parts caution and curiosity.
Kurt’s rubbing my shoulder like a proud father who’s seen his kid through heroin rehab but I barely register the weight of his palm because all I’m thinking is: I should’ve felt this way after commanding Rooenn to kill whatshername. And I couldn’t have been more detached when I allowed the bastard to gut and scissor that D lister – Sheridan or was it Saul? Whatever. So then, before the last link can vanish through the trailer door I’m floor-diving - I’m shooting out an eager hand toward my shiny snaking thing. So precious.
‘Please tell me it’s a dog you got out there.’ says Kurt hopping off the bed to go look.
‘No, Rooenn’s no dog,’ I shout after him,
‘Listen...Kurt,’ and I add some extra bass to my voice as I continue,‘If I find out you’re some shape shifting minion out for my head -’
‘The last thing I want to do is give chaos head.’
He heads outside. His smutty joke is a good sign. Minions generally don’t have a sense of humour.
‘This guy I’m in is an actor called Lance Caesar -Young,’ shouts Kurt, 'He's playing me in Nirvana the movie - ’ his voice trails off. He’s seen Rooenn.
When Kurt returns to his place on the bed his face is expressionless.
‘This is a prop,' he says handing me a Gibson he's fetched from under the bed, 'a present from the director.’
Kurt says director in the same whiney way petulant teenagers say mother and man, this guitar - although it looks immaculate - it's useless to Kurt. The fucking thing is strung up for a right handed player. I nod toward the other axe, the teal green and Byzantium Fender laid out on his ruffled cream bedding asking, ‘What about your six-stringed sleeping partner?’
To this Kurt replies, ‘Before they fired him, David bought me this.’
My mind somersaults and I have to ask, ‘David as in Lynch?’
A full head of blonde shakes from side to side and says, ‘David as in Fincher.’
I open my mouth but he interjects telling me that no, I really don’t wanna know who the new director is. I take a big glug of beer looking at the Gibson then back at the Fender while Kurt says, ‘I’ve been stalling, faking illness, and not turning up on set...for weeks. I'm trying to fuck up the big Hollywood machine. Figured you'd want to join in?’
I’m English, but I am hanging out with Kurt Cobain...And I am in L.A, so I punch through the smoke that rises from my flaming hairdo screaming,
‘Let’s fuck Hollywood in the ass!’ And Kurt mirrors my smile too perfectly. He must have seen Rooenn raping the girl, so what does he make of me?
‘Hey man’, he says, 'Let’s celebrate, let’s jam? I got keys to a rehearsal space?’
I excitedly nod in this moment that would be quaint and wholesome were it not for the unremitting shredding, the biting of Rooenn’s chain chomping down on the front doorstep. The clinking bridle leading down and beneath our vehicle. Chomp chomp chomp it bites. I glare at the viciously, yanking metal as I visualise a wagging bleeding vagina. I envision inch-wide punctures shrouding a semi-dressed female torso. The grasp on my metal viper draws a little of my phosphorous goo for blood and I couldn’t clutch at it tighter.
You can’t just shut it out. And so, I haul myself into the passenger seat next to my dirty blonde divinity, my lengthening lead gripped fast as I watch my monster and its victim in the rear view mirror – a grey, pink, red horror that gets smaller and smaller with fuel and distance because Kurt’s foot is hitting the accelerator hard.
I’m thinking of bad poetry. I'm reciting Bowie lyrics to help zone out the confident rattle of Rooenn's chain hung tight outside my passenger window.
I bet I look nervous.
I'm sure I seem excited. Jumpy.
There’re questions to be asked.
For instance, I’m more than a little paranoid about the humming black rectangle on the wall. I ask Kurt about Sid ‘fucking-attacked-me’ Vicious.
‘Sorry about that, Kurt replies, ‘Sid really doesn’t like it when people touch me, not without permission anyway.’
A hi-hat some cymbals, two bass drum pedals, and more toms are hauled out onto the roadside because like any friendly musician, I’m pitching in with my fellow player, emptying his gear to the street while inside, I’m squirming. Each unpacked instrument accents the countdown booming my inner space.
Kurt's so jovial, tells me how he could focus on calling me, that he could sense me tracking him, but I’m zombie-nodding. I’m freaking out. The piece of piss chords for ‘Been a Son’ have slipped out the back-door of my recall.
My blonde god, he points at me and he says,
‘Look at you: Spiderfingers, god of chaos. You’re slick.’
‘The chain.’ he says as my eyes follow his line of sight to my ankle. I browse a quick-fire glance at my fist grasping one big hunk of nothing - nothing but a pocket of air.
I think of a barbed and spiked penis as big as a policeman’s truncheon. I see the weapon punch through and gorge out a female’s abdomen, the baton excavating rib cage and sternum through Caucasian skin. The silver snake round my ankle squeezes me and it’s not as if the horror-dick goes away. I still see it.
I fight but I can't help but view the ruined place it’s made bloody, and inches wider.
I am god inspecting vineyards whilst a sinner turns to salt.
I am The Almighty issuing Noah mathematical measurements whilst simultaneously reorganising valleys and weather patterns for ‘spring cleaning’.
I am the great I AM drawing new planets out of my bottomless imagination as nations go to war claiming to have my protection.
And I am Spiderfingers trying to recall the chord progression to the bridge of the Nirvana track Breed. I’m sure I’ll get it and that Rooenn’s cock cleaving out of the girls chest is in no way a distraction. The blood oozing down and off her legs reminds me of lava creeping down a volcanic slope – some documentary I saw.
Her blushing legs contribute to a firm and fixed picture in my mind because I’m an absent-minded charmer, looking down at my lustrous python weaving itself about me.
I’m onstage but I feel an altar should be up here with me.
I’m expected to tune up. Noting my difficulty, Kurt hops and skips over drum cases to help since tuning takes him a mere minute. A sensitive few turns of the machine-heads are all god needs before he lollops back to the kit, sticks snapping out militant rhythms against his thighs.
For all the vague monstrosities that clot my god memory, this kind of vulnerability is dizzying.
I scan the intensity of his face; my god the dead rock-star, busy, lowering his drum stool. Such a short guy. You wouldn’t know it to close your eyes though because right after his stool is ready, you’d be like me – your jaw to the floor. You’d be listening to drum skins take the severe thrashings of aggressive post punk.
Getting my levels right takes but a few frustrating minutes, it’s so much easier when you’re a two piece.
I’m glad he’s insisted on handling vocals. I don’t have to scream, sing or front, though it’s all there, alive inside me, hoping I’ll set it free, give it a chance to arrow-head a campaign of worship. Oh, that knowing smile. Fools your audience into believing you know something they really, really ought to.
Ooh! Don’t forget to be funny! All these little tools, they help construct belief. Now your words and actions have a huddle of curious primates determinedly digging away at their meaning. Hopefully, you think, fanatically and till the end of their lives. No, I’m happy that the microphones on Kurt, meaning my only focus is on chords.
I fling bolt after distorted bolt into his storm of a rock beat. It thunders. It halts. It struggles.
And then the amazing happens.
My fingers, the spidery fuckers, they unlock a new riff, a shadow of Bleach track Negative Creep. It’s in the wrong key but the tempo’s identical. The smirk Kurt blinds me with confirms what we’re both thinking.
I tread over uneven carpet, clumsily but without disaster till I arrive at Kurt’s mic, praying to Gaia I won’t be a fucking dildo and screw this up...
N E X T T I M E I N
S P I D E R F I N G E R S
WARNING: THESE COMMENTS INCLUDE SPOILERS.