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Medical Grade Music

Medical Grade Music

by Steve Davis, Kavus Torabi
Medical Grade Music

Medical Grade Music

by Steve Davis, Kavus Torabi


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The story of two outsiders and obsessives whose collision prompted an evangelistic alliance on the furthest frontiers of underground music.

Steve Davis first met Kavus Torabi - guitarist with Gong, Guapo, Cardiacs and Knifeworld - in the mid-2000's at a gig by French underground rock legends Magma. Over the next few years, this unlikely duo's shared affinity for visionary psychedelic music would become the foundation of not only a firm friendship, but also the most infectiously inclusive broadcasting style since the much-mourned death of John Peel.

In their weekly radio shows and a one-of-a-kind live DJ roadshow which included a legendary appearance at Glastonbury, Steve and Kavus mapped out a musical landscape of rare enchantment, where the only passport needed was a pair of open ears. No-one, least of all Davis and Torabi themselves, was expecting the 6-time former World Snooker champion and a British-Iranian underground rock musician to become one of the most trusted brands in British alternative music.

As Steve and Kavus were starting to get to grips with the challenge of their newfound status, events took a further unexpected turn. Suddenly they found themselves in a band together. And not just any band ... as two thirds of Britain's (if not the world's) leading harmonium, guitar and analogue synth power-trio (with Michael J.York of Coil)The Utopia Strong, the two friends found themselves plunging into a vortex of spontaneous compositional excitement.

How Steve and Kavus pulled this off is just one of the many questions MEDICAL GRADE MUSIC will try to answer. Part sonic memoir, part Socratic dialogue, part gonzo mission to the heart of what makes music truly psychedelic this book is the first work of joint autobiography to ever trace the evolution of a life-changing friendship through the discographies of Gentle Giant and Voivod. From the chip-shops of Plumstead to the the wildest shores of Plymouth's nineties thrash scene. it's a funny and fearless buddy movie of the soul, with a soundtrack that will make your eyes bleed.

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Product Details

ISBN-13: 9781474619493
Publisher: Orion Publishing Group, Limited
Publication date: 04/12/2022
Pages: 336
Product dimensions: 6.37(w) x 9.62(h) x 1.25(d)

About the Author

Steve Davis is a six time World Snooker Champion, BBC snooker 'pundit' and well-known enthusiast for out-there music. Kavus Torabi is a member of Gong, Cardiacs and many other underground psychedelic bands. They met many years ago and forged a friendship through a shared love of cult experimental music. They became DJs - both on the live circuit and on their monthly 'Fire Shuffle' show on NTS - and they are now The Utopia Strong, a band with a celebrated album release and many gigs behind them. This is their story.

Table of Contents

Introductions 1

Chapter 1 Magma 7

Chapter 2 Stray Cats 15

Chapter 3 Man 23

Chapter 4 Iron Maiden 31

Chapter 5 Gentle Giant 39

Chapter 6 The Smiths 47

Chapter 7 More Magma 57

Chapter 8 Frank Zappa 75

Chapter 9 Charles Hayward 83

Chapter 10 Voivod 91

Chapter 11 Yet more Magma 101

Chapter 12 Cardiacs 113

Chapter 13 Gong 121

Chapter 14 Pink Floyd 135

Chapter 15 Surgeon 141

Chapter 16 Die Laughing 155

Chapter 17 Mixmaster Morris 167

Chapter 18 More Die Laughing 177

Chapter 19 Henry Cow 187

Chapter 20 Yet more Die Laughing 195

Chapter 21 The Utopia Strong 205

Chapter 22 The Monsoon Bassoon 219

Chapter 23 More The Utopia Strong 227

Chapter 24 More Cardiacs 235

Chapter 25 Spacemen 3 245

Chapter 26 Mercury Rev 253

Chapter 27 Yet more The Utopia Strong 263

Chapter 28 XTC 273

Chapter 29 The Gasman 281

Chapter 30 Leonard Cohen 291

Afterwords 307

Appendices 317

Acknowledgements 329

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