Sparks of Hope : Impressions of Early North American Anarchist Newspapers: words by Barry Pateman; music by Devin Hoff. [CD Review]

Barry Pateman is a great speaker, combining passion and knowledge with wit and wisdom (what more could you ask for?) These pieces are very thoughtful, reflecting not only that he knows an awful lot about the subject, but also the respect he has for it: An imaginative effort is needed to understand the past, to comprehend these lost worlds.

In talking about these anarchist newspapers, he can quote plenty of dramatic material. Would you have found a quote about ‘the supreme daring of liberation’ to sum up Luigi Galleani’s Cronaca Sovversiva (Subversive Chronicles)? But he has, and it does.

Devin Hoff uses his double bass to make music that is haunting or driving, and sometimes both together. These pieces (to me, anyway) would make a good soundtrack to an anarchist film, being tense and dramatic. This tension means words and music complement each other. I look forward to hearing more from Devin Hoff. And much more from Barry Pateman, whether spoken or written. How can we encourage him to keep talking?

The CD is available from the KSL for $7.00/£5.00