Hum Along to Turing

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Days to the Bicentennial: 36,278

Out magazine reports that London-based band Fiction has a single called The Apple on their debut CD The Big Other that is about–and dedicated to–Alan Turing.

Band member Mike Barrett wrote the song and shared its genesis with Out:

Barrett shared that he first learned about Turing from reading his work on algorithms and his contribution at Bletchley Park—which during the WWII was the site of the UK’s main decryption establishment, the Government Code and Cypher School. “[I] subsequently read about his trial, and the circumstances of his death came as a bit of a surprise… Here’s a genius—a man that arguably invented the computer, who made a priceless contribution to defeating the Nazis—put on trial for his sexuality. Of course, countless others were tried in the UK, and continue to be around the world, but Turing’s story illustrated to me so graphically the sheer absurdity of prejudice, and ‘The Apple’ is a small attempt at understanding his personal torment at that time.”

The Out article seems to be set up to stream the song through Soundcloud, but the streaming isn’t fuctional as of this writing and I can’t find the song through a search of Soundcloud or on Fiction’s YouTube page. So while I look forward to hearing it, I can’t say anything about the sound of the song just yet.

Fiction

Fiction

The band sounds good overall, though, with a retro-futurismo vibe that calls to mind Roxy Music and certain strains of 1980s new wave, so I’m hopeful. And the Out article does provide the lyrics, reproduced below.

The Apple – For Alan Turing

They said Alan
they said listen, Alan
they said listen, Alan
you’ve got a simple decision
a simple choice
but it’s one or the other

so I had a choice
I had a choice
I had a choice

but they’ve been making my mind up
they’ve been making my body
into something it’s not

the algorithm was nothing special
I just took a bite
the code was really nothing much
and I just took a bite

they said it’s not right
they said it’s not right
they said it’s not right
and we can’t let you do that
we can’t let you get away with that

so I took a bite
I took a bite
I took a bite

because they’ve been making my mind up
they’ve been making my body
into something it’s not

the algorithm was nothing special
I just took a bite

You can find Fiction’s YouTube channel here.

The Big Other will be released on March 4, and Fiction will be on tour in the UK throughout March.

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