It is Easter Sunday around half past eight. My daughter has just finished a small Easter egg hunt around the lounge and is tucking into her breakfast. Her mother is still in bed, suffering from the same strand of flu that has blighted KC in recent weeks.
The sun is shining, it’s a beautiful morning, and I realise that for the last week or so I haven’t really spent much time with my daughter due to work commitments, she’s grown and I feel like I’ve missed something in her life. Thankfully the work situation has eased slightly and I decide for the next week or so she will take priority, everything else can wait for a bit.
“So what do you want to do on this fine Easter Sunday?” I say to her as she finishes her bowl of cornflakes.
She looks up at me and says “I’d like to climb a mountain and eat an Easter Egg on top of it”. She could have said anything, usually her go to response is ‘Playground’ or ‘Penguins’, but today she decides she wants to climb a mountain.
I’ve no idea where this has come from, but it doesn’t matter, I can do mountains. Well sort of.
“Well, I say, let’s brush your teeth and see what we can do”.
In ten minutes we are ready, I have a plan. We will drive to Dartmoor and muck around on the rocks up there. They are sort of mountains, I mean she’s four she can’t climb a mountain but she can jump off a few big rocks and munch some chocolate up there.
Before we go she looks at the box of Cd’s that I have still failed to put in the loft. “Daddy, can we have the one with beard?” I am momentarily confused, and then I realised she is talking about “I Care Because You Do” by Aphex Twin.
“Are you sure?” I say, fully aware that Aphex Twin is perhaps not the most child friendly artist out there.
“Yes, the beard” she says and pops her shoes on. I grab the CD and we head to the car.
The roads are deserted, usually it can be a real pain getting up to Dartmoor as lost tourists drive down narrow lanes in attempt to find some free parking. Not today, we see not one car between our house and the main road. A good five miles.
I ask my daughter what she thinks about the music playing. I don’t really think she has been listening because she been talking non stop about mountains, chocolate and the Easter Bunny for the last ten minutes.
“It’s Ok” she says, “I think it sounds like the Easter Bunny being chased by a fox, will we find the Easter Bunny’s burrow in the mountains?” she asks. I tell her that’s we might find it, but I didn’t know exactly where it was. I tell her we will definitely see horses and sheep though.
As the mountains of Dartmoor spring into view, we are a three songs into the CD, we’ve had
Acrid Avid Jam Shred – which is kind of what happens when Richard D James takes a David Lynch film soundtrack and sticks his trademark loops and beats over the top. It sounds like what the theme to the X Files would sound like if actual aliens have had their way with it.
Icct Hedral (edit) – You’ve got to love these Aphex Twin song titles haven’t you? This is more of the same, a more sinister sounding soundtrack and it was this track that sounded like the Easter Bunny being chased and you know what, it kind of does, you close your eyes, you can picture a slightly distorted looking bunny being chased by a weird fox with the Aphex Twin’s face. This tweaks and bleeps over the top of some sampled strings and folks it’s a pretty unsettling six minutes of music to be honest.
The third track is Ventolin (Video Version) which is just insane and starts with a piercing single note, which can be heard pretty much throughout the track. As it plays I look in the mirror at my daughter and ask her if she is ok – she nods. I worry because this of all Aphex tracks is the most unconventional, it’s that loud piercing bit running all the way through. It’s like having tinnitus, in a good way because the rest of the clunking and bashing you can hear is rather excellent, but whether a four year should be listening to it, I am unsure.
“This music just goes Clang Clang, Bang” my daughter tells me sagely, and thus cementing further my belief that she will one day be Head of Music for the BBC, and then “I can see a pony” she can indeed, because it’s standing in the middle of the road. This happens on Dartmoor. A lot. Perhaps she’ll be the next Michaela Strachan…
When we park up Mookid is playing, which is a much nicer piece of music, it kind of feels like a Dartmoor piece of music, laid back, and slightly sunny. We get out the car and head up to the rocks. My daughter face is beaming as she legs it towards the rocks, and I look across the vast open space and there is not a single person in any direction. It is pretty much perfect. I chase after my daughter and swoop her into the air, her laughter filling the massive open space.