existentialism – mekons (new edition)

In July 2015, the mekons recorded an album of new songs, existentialism, at the Jalopy Theater in Red Hook, Brooklyn, with the help of 75 "mekoristers". The recording took place in real time using a single microphone, in accordance with the notion that a record need not take more time to record than it does to listen to. Rather than release the album with the usual packaging, for the first 1,000 copies the band put together a book of writing and art that responded to each of the 12 tracks, with the CD included in the package. Contributors to the book included mekons past and present, but also artist pals such as Jock McFadyen, Jo Claewaert, Martin Billheimer, and Helen Tsatsos, and writer friends including Megan Abbott, Johnny Dowd, Jeffrey St. Clair, John Williams, Emma Bolland, and Wendy Frith.

Those thousand copies are long gone, but to satisfy continuing demand for the book, Tract Home Publications has published a second edition, which doesn’t include the CD but does feature an additional 16 pages with the complete song lyrics in handwritten and annotated form, which were not in the original book and are not included the booklet of the current CD.