GP-O “Prepared To Go That Bit Further”

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The following article is from today’s UK newspaper, The Guardian

Body politics

Mark Paytress finds some musicians prepared to go that bit further …

Saturday October 7, 2006 – The Guardian

When Psychic TV’s Genesis P-Orridge walks out on stage at the Astoria this evening, on a rare visit to London, those who’ve followed the career of rock’s most notorious provocateur might notice a change or two.

"I’ve had all my teeth replaced with solid gold replicas of the originals," he says, "beauty spots tattooed on my face, silicone injections in my lips, cheek implants, laser hair removal, breast implants …"

P-Orridge, once on the receiving end of a "This man corrupts kids" tabloid headline, is no longer a man but a self-styled "pandrogyne". "Or a hermaphrodite by choice, if you like," he says. Gone are the Charlie Manson T-shirts and military fatigues. Now, he favours a blond, Bette Davis bob and lingerie. The man who invented industrial music with Throbbing Gristle, founded the Temple Of Psychic Youth, guarded his HQ with axes and a pet python and stood at the forefront of acid house, now prefers tending his "English-style garden" in New York. The final frontier now, he says, is to surrender his physical body to art.

Those who remember P-Orridge as a keen advocate of ritualistic sex magick might be surprised to learn that finding true love provided the catalyst for his new path. "It took me until 1993 to find my other half (Lady Jaye)," he says, deliberately avoiding the words ‘wife’ and ‘spouse’. "She’s so beautiful, so perfectly complicated that I just cry tears of blissful love," he says of his partner and fellow pandrogyne. "We’re fortunate to have met and become one."

Less surprisingly, for someone who has worn his private preoccupations so publicly, P-Orridge regards pandrogny as a crusade. "It’s inevitable if we’re going to evolve as a species," he says. "Our perception of the world is binary: right/wrong, black/white, male/female. We live in this miraculous technological environment, and yet our human behaviour is still governed by basic impulses from prehistoric times." Replication through science, P-Orridge insists, would help change human behaviour completely.

The newly-configured Psychic TV reflect P-Orridge’s positive philosophy. "We really rock out now!" he explains. "I’ve finally made the record I want to hear at home," he says of the band’s forthcoming garage/psych-influenced set. Nostalgia seems an unlikely home for the flamboyant frontiersman. "Yes, but the 1960s was one of the few times in human history when the species saw the possibilities of change," he retorts. "And if you don’t believe in that, then art is just entertainment."

· Psychic TV play the Astoria, WC2, Sat 7. A new album, Hell Is Invisible … Heaven Is Her/e, is out on Kill Rock Stars in January, 2007

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