In times gone by, I often experienced dawn whilst leaving a club or a party. Thus visual joy tended to be coupled with an unnatural high. Sometimes I was between two states – neither fully sober nor completely cocooned in an altered state of consciousness. At other times I was probably so away with the fairies that the concept of dawn was lost to me but no less beautiful for the lack of reference point.
There was an occasion when dawn descended from a garden in central Manchester. A hidden green space, juxtaposed against the grey urban landscape. I remember there was a boy riding around on bike. I think he had been delivering papers or maybe he was waiting for McDonalds to open. If memory serves, which it probably doesn’t, my friend had some really massive pants with him. Gigantic comedy pants they were. The kind you could sleep under, if a blanket was unavailable. It’s entirely possible that this was a story shared in the Manchester garden and I never actually saw those pants. They may have been the giant pants of my imagination - and it doesn’t get much more surreal than that. This is quite fitting given our reasons for being in Manchester.
We had travelled there to experience the mind-altering brilliance of The Orb. This was the first time I'd seen them live, and, as it transpires, the last. I remember that they played Little Fluffy Clouds – we all felt it, as much as heard it. It was one of those times where sound, light and body combine perfectly. The room was unified - from The Orb themselves, to their viewing public. Strangely I cannot recall if they played Perpetual Dawn. Yet I’m sure they must have. It is one of The Orbs more bouncy tracks thus would have been an appropriate choice. Memory can become so fractured over time. Artificial highs tend to ‘help’ with that. I can remember the flowers on my boots, the long haired hippies, the blues of the light show and even the patterns on the toilet wall but I cannot recall Perpetual Dawn. Although memory probably fails to supply: my mind’s ear enjoys the brilliant Perpetual Dawn, as dawn broke over the Manchester garden.
Let the dawn play ever on.