Karlheinz Stockhausen

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“He has his moments.”
~ Oscar Wilde on Karlheinz Stockhausen
“You sir, are a fahget”
~ Oscar Wilde on Karlheinz Stockhausen during gay sex with Karlheinz Stockhausen
“I was horrible at everything I ever tried to do and people respect me. The American Dream has come true!!”
~ Karlheinz Stockhausen on Karlheinz Stockhausen

Karlheinz Stockhausen (August 22, 1928–December 5, 2007) is a modern classical composer who, despite his obvious lack of musical sense and complete inability to use or understand audio technology, is renowned for his innovation in the field of electronic music and musique concrète, as well as being a pioneer in human-donkey sexual penetration, cow-milking, and intellectual masturbation. He is often cited as having the “largest ego in the world” and is in a close race with Bill O’Reilly for the most “wrongfully attributed sense of self-worth.” Many modern musical historians have called him as the “most influential and longest lasting musical turd” in history.

edit Early Life

Karlheinz Stockhausen was born as the poor bastard son of Adolf Hitler and the famous drag queen RuPaul. In his teens he enlisted in the Nazi party and apparently committed some of the most “bloodthirsty” and “horrifying” atrocities of the entire war, torturing American soldiers as well as small German and Dutch children. When the war was over, his sadistic tendencies were reprimanded and considered “not entirely Kosher” with the new image of Germany during its Reconstruction. Letters from the time indicate that he was seeking and developing new forms of torture to inflict upon the masses, albeit in a much more covert and subtle way.

Ironically (or perhaps not), this is also the same time that he enrolled in his first musical studies. He entered the Hochschule für Musik Köln, a school built on top of the German equivalent of Indian burial grounds. Stockhausen reportedly found it inspiring that this place was a converted torturehaus from a pre-Napoleonic time-space.

Though he believed that his compositions were of superior quality at the time, his professors often referred to him as “borderline mentally retarded”[1] and “tone deaf, with no comprehension of even the most fundamental aspects of music.” He was, as some alumni of his graduating class recalled, the laughingstockhausen of the entire school. His compositions were often played over loudspeakers in the school courtyard every morning, but many of the students misinterpreted them as the air raid sirens warning of an invasion by the Scheiß-Amis (damn Yanks). Stockhausen, who had had a terrible accident involving an avocado, three crayons, and a soldering iron that had kept his mental capacity lower than that of the average dung beetle, mistook their contorted, grotesque reactions as general approval of what he was doing.

Unfortunately, Stockhausen, though not mentally all that sharp, did finally discover through some particularly witty bathroom poetry that he not only had “two dads” who had a total of three balls between them, but also that his compositions were the German equivalent of a poop joke to his peers. He immediately withdrew from the school, declaring a Total Krieg (total war) on the establishment. He was, however, included in the yearbook in an after-the-fact sense, as “most likely to die by human animal penetration.” If they only knew…

edit Career in music

After little Karl’s embarrassing public rebellion against his musical training and subsequent withdrawal from society, he took to squatting friends’ apartments, often eating inhuman amounts of food and drinking to excess without any offer of compensation. One night, after a particularly impressive Jägermeister binge, he composed the first of his “mature”[2] pieces over the course of an hour in a violent, drunken rage. Anyone that hears the work describes it as being completely devoid of any forethought and entirely lacking in any dramatic, harmonic, rhythmic, religious, compositional, mathematical, practical, theoretical, deferential, intellectual, shamanistic, sexual, philosophical, linguistic, dogmatic sense. The general concession at the time was that it was the worst piece of music ever written, a feat only attributed to Wagner before him (who he emulated).

edit Electronic Music

It was probably around the date of June 6, 1945, at 3:13 pm, in the bathroom of an Outback Steakhausen that Stockhausen discovered electronic tape equipment. From this time on his infatuation with the machines of audio recording and playback have caused more bad trips, more suicides, and more burst eardrums than any single event in human history. Giving someone like Stockhausen (whose IQ, as noted, is that of the average marmot) access to advanced electronic tape equipment and audio technology is the German equivalent of letting Adolf Hitler and Charles Manson near a major water supply with a vat of high concentrate LSD and full access to all broadcasting equipment in the world. Fucking Germans…

Stockhausen then proceeded — in a characteristically clueless rebellious manner — to make run-of-the-mill musique concrète for, oh, God knows how long. His major contributions to the field were Scheißehaus, Reihen Sie Quartett, für zwei Bandmaschinen und -eseldurchgriff auf, I’m a Slave for Du, Girl, and Stockhausen ist, er rulz das Beste. The style mostly consisted of seemingly randomly edited pieces of tape spliced over unharmonic piano chords. These pieces have no structure and are essentially unlistenable by most carbon-based life forms, as lab studies involving dogs, rats, marmots and Canadians have subsequently proven.

The absurdly unredeeming character of these pieces is now attributed to Stockhausen’s inability to operate even the simplest electronic equipment. Described by acquaintances as “harmless but stupid”, the encounter of a “fat, broody and boorish alcoholic” with “the IQ of your average paper clip” and advanced audio equipment proved to be dangerous. However, since the world at the time was a heaving mess of pretentious, over-confident twats with little to no talent and disproportionately large mouths and egos, Stockhausen got his foot in the door and managed to unite many untalented musicians under the title of “modernism” in a formation that would later be known as the Stockhausen Gruppen. The musical style of his compositions from this period convincingly reflect not only the advancements of his age, but also his musicians’ absolute incapacity to understand them. At the time, he was heralded as the vanguard of art music, despite simultaneous advancements in jazz, country, blues, and rock and roll. Foresight would have shown that real musicians would have embraced these forms as frameworks for experimentation, while Stockhausen’s brand of incomprehensible drivel would eventually be consumed by its own pretension and absurdity.

edit Ego, ergo sum

As Stockhausen’s music gained recognition, it fueled his primal instinct toward alpha male-ism. He soon began to lecture to music students about the complexity of harmony and structure in music… his own music. His self-importance flared into an atom bomb of pretention and donkey/male copulation that resulted in what is today considered to be the largest ego in the world. Stockhausen had finally justified his complete inability to write music by disguising it as pretentious experimentalism. Finally coming full circle, genuinely talented students were now subjected to studying his incomprehensible and pointless manuscripts, in the process draining any seed of genius that was there to begin with. It is often believed that the period of absolute infertility in modern art music that came before the 1960s was directly attributable to Stockhausen’s lectures, which prompted the largest withdrawals from music schools worldwide.

Karlheinz’ ego is a sore spot among even his most ardent fans. In 2001, one such fan, speaking on condition of anonymity, stated that he “hates how Karly tries to talk up his music with these like crazy, big-type words. I mean like, really, it’s not even noise, you know, it’s worse. I really only listen to him to learn how I can like, you know, seem more important and Bohemian. I actually think he’s rather shite.”

Stockhausen came up with some of the most abstract and unintelligible explanations ever encountered in the history of musical discourse to explain and justify his increasingly abstract and unintelligible pieces. During the course of one of his many world tours — which were carried out more as a German equivalent of a freakshowhausen — he picked up on the words: reality, cosmos, ephemeral, post-African, rhythmic, harmonic, explore, and helicopter. According to analyses conducted by Pierre Boulez, all interviews following this period (generally composed in advance by Stocki himself) are “nothing more than do-cacaphonic constructions built upon the entire gamut of possible serial permutations of Stockhausen’s somewhat modest English vocabulary. Putain mec, chapeau!”[3] Stockhausen paints himself as a seer of something more than just a normal human, for only someone who has access to higher realms, such as himself, or a depressed schizophrenic, would be able to translate the world he experiences into sound.

edit Helicopters

At some point in time, when Karlheinz’ 15 minutes were up, he made a desperate bid for attention somewhat akin to the German equivalent of a toddler throwing a tantrum. By 1970, the minimalists — who had a legitimately creative and innovative approach to music — had eclipsed him in almost every way, aside from ego and self-importance. Philip Glass recalls once “smokin’ a doobie” with Karlheinz, whom he described as “a real drag.” Glass, who jealously despised Stockhausen’s better-than-thou artiness, took to taunting him during their smoking session. Karlheinz became so flustered that he started making strange helicopter noises with his mouth, apparently in a primal fit to ward off predators. Unfortunately the technique didn’t work and Glass continued to taunt Karlheinz, to the point of daring him to write a piece of music involving four helicopters. As history would tell — and as might be expected, given the total absence of irony in the Teuton personality — this dare was taken all too seriously by the socially disconnected — and righteously stoned — Stockhausen.

Years later, Glass recalled suggesting the idea but said, “Come on, I didn't really mean it, I was just so high that it just sounded funny, you know? I actually thought it was the worst idea I had ever heard and simply suggested it to him because he had already had so many bad ideas up to that point, and well, it would be icing on the cake. It’s funny that he actually did it. I wonder how much he got in royalties.”

The Helicopter String Quartet, as the piece came to be known (Helikopter Scheißquartett in German), is his most famous (sic) work. It was written for string quartet and a quartet of helicopters to drown out the cacaphony of music (sic) that he wrote for the string players. At the time, it was considered to be quite a spectacle, but not really very clever. The piece has come to represent all the downfalls of modern music, both in its complete disregard of sounds that are pleasant to human ears and in its overreaching pretentious ambitions. The Guinness Book of World Records has awarded the piece the title of “The Worst Music Ever Written”, a feat only achieved by Stockhausen several years earlier. In addition, even the circles that once championed Karlheinz’ music now said of the seasoned megalomane: “Just because someone hasn’t done it before doesn’t mean it should be done, for Christ’s sake. Since the premier of this piece I have developed a nasty heroin and enema habit in an attempt to escape the memory of this atrocity towards mankind, and on behalf of all Germans überall, I apologize for this man, he is a disgrace, he is our disgrace.”

edit Legacy

Stockhausen has left a long legacy of mostly awful music and overblown self-importance. In the future, despite what most textbooks say, he will not be remembered for either his “innovations in electronic music” or his “complex style” but rather, as A) a fat old German putz who was stupid enough to write a musical piece with helicopters, or B) the retard who said post-African in the interview about Aphex Twin.

Finally, on some typically rainy, cold and dreary day somewhere in the western region of West Germany late in the year 2007, this fat-ass German turd finally paid off his father Adolf’s Holocaust debt by dying. Now that he is dead, scholars have ascertained that the influx of horrible music should soon come to a grinding halt and that the term “post-African” will finally be disregarded as “non-sensical” in the eyes of anyone who speaks any language. I do not think that this article speaks only for the author in saying, “Thank God you are dead, Stockhausen.”

As aptly noted by the American magazine, Stockhausen did not really accomplish anything in music, since Schoenberg and Stravinsky beat him at pretty much everything by thirty-some years. He left behind a legacy of millions, if not billions, of offspring (a form of insect commonly known as the silverfish) to which he left his life earnings of 700 yen.[4] Furthermore, the closing of the hole in the ozone layer, the cure for aids, and the end of the reign of George W. Bush have all immediately preceded his death. Many people feel that this convergence of events is the collective sigh of relief experienced by humanity upon realizing that no more music requiring helicopters as an instrument would ever be written.

edit Quotes

“My music is an expression of the cosmos, of reality. I avoid post-africanism as much as possible and try to explore new avenues of rhythmic and harmonic structure. Helicopter.”
~ Stockhausen on his music, ca 1959, to which the interviewer replied “I think Africa is still a country. Oh wait, Africa is a continent. I also am a retard.”
“I… was the first person… to live in Kürten.”
~ Stockhausen speaking about Stockhausen at the Stockhausen Courses 2008, in Stockhausenhafen (previously known as Kürten, near Cologne).

“Harmonic and rhythmic sense of cosmos and reality. I try to avoid repetition and explore the efermeral nature of reality in my music, it is as natural as nature is natural and as efemeral as efermeraure”

~ Stockhausen’s personal memoirs, entitled “Helicopters.”

“I had anal sex with a donkey, sue me.”

~ Stockhausen’s final statements in court regarding an animal cruelty charge.
“I heard the piece Aphex Twin of Richard James carefully: I think it would be very helpful if he listens to my work Song Of The Youth, which is electronic music, and a young boy’s voice singing with himself. Because he would then immediately stop with all these post-African repetitions, and he would look for changing tempi and changing rhythms, and he would not allow to repeat any rhythm if it were varied to some extent and if it did not have a direction in its sequence of variations.”
~ Stockhausen on the music of Aphex Twin. to which the interviewer replied: “If Africa is still a country, how can anything be ‘post-African’? Shit, once again, Africa is a fucking continent, not a country. Your retardation has officially infected me.”

“Post-African....” (sound of a helicopter)

~ The dying words of Stockhausen.

edit References

  1. This phrase was, at the time, commonly accepted as a legitimate medical diagnosis.
  2. The term mature is of course used here in only the most generous and loose sense.
  3. Pierre Boulez, “On Musical Analysis,” in Queer Orientations (Faber and Faber, 1986), pp. 116–18. “… analysis remains an academic exercise, perfectly painless, but perfectly pointless.”
  4. Roughly $6.60 USD. Stockhausen converted his estate’s worth into yen in order to make it sound like more than it really was.

edit External links

  • Mockhausen. Cartoons taking the piss out of Stockhausen referenced on the website of the Stockhausen Verlag, a publishing company founded by Stockhausen to publish the Gesamtwerke of Stockhausen.
Decomposed German Composers
Johann Sebastian Bach | Ludwig van Beethoven | Johannes Brahms | Paul Hindemith | Gustav Mahler | Felix Mendelssohn | Robert Schumann | Karlheinz Stockhausen the Turd | Richard Strauss | Richard Wagner
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