A Head Full of Dreams by James Ardis
A HEAD FULL OF DREAMS by James Ardis is a collection of devotional hymns dedicated to the band Coldplay, and their 2015 album “A Head Full of Dreams”. Through traditional verse, maps, and TripAdvsior pages, the book’s narrator voices his unflinching faith in Chris Martin and the Coldplay boys. The project is dedicated to anyone who has ever loved a book or a movie or an album and could never find a way to properly describe it.
"I have to confess I've never heard Coldplay, so can't say what they sound like, but I know what James Ardis' book sound like: a consciousness filtered through the linguistic prism of wikipedia and the various styles of user-supplied content that inflects the language of the internet today. That oracular internet tells me that the band took their name from a book of poems (Philip Horky's Child’s Reflections, Cold Play [Minerva Press, 1997]), and so it seems appropriate that the trajectory returns to a book of poems. Like Horky's book, Ardis' 'collection of poetry escapes the stylistic and structural conformity to explore the psychological realms, combining the sureal wth [sic] the
natural which results in a startling and provocative ambiguity.'"
- Craig Dworkin, author of No Medium
"A Head Full of Dreams makes for a grody brain. In James Ardis's chapbook of the same title, the brain in question belongs to the late Riley Lazare, whose inexplicable obsession with Coldplay's brand of saccharine and globalist pop filled and fulfilled him. It also propelled him on a "world journey" from an undisclosed location in Oklahoma to various Canadian cities, producing in turn a fragmentary travelogue speckled with yearnings and myopic hymns. Of course, a grody brain suits a grody world of North American detritus—one rife with Dollar Generals, Pepsis, and the odd vintage issue of Playboy. Lazare's reports from the field show him dutifully playing the role of a promotional apparatus, albeit unreliably (e.g. he vastly mischaracterizes Beyoncé). In this way, his ugly proclivity for universalization mirrors that of Coldplay's flat and sentimental aesthetic, making for a cutting portrait of contemporary fandom. Here, fantasies beget delusions, the market consuming its consumers all the while. As Lazare's hero Chris Martin sings in 'Adventure of a Lifetime': 'I'm a dream that died by light of day.'"
- J. Gordon Faylor, editor of Gauss PDF
"I have heard precisely two Coldplay songs and enjoy neither, yet I easily recognize a part of myself in A Head Full of Dreams by James Ardis. The unwavering dedication its protagonist has for the group transcends the rank of fanboy and enters a realm of surreal idolatry. In the past and for various reasons, I was often somewhere between those two levels, erring at times toward the latter. While those embarrassments exist as footnotes in earlier chapters of my life, Riley Lazare’s lack of biographic detail renders him a cipher, representative of the manic pop culture worship all around us. In this newfound and rightful era of celebrity reproach, Ardis depicts the obsession of an unhinged follower as a reminder of the danger in lionizing those few we see as stars."
- Bill Ripley, editor of Another New Calligraphy
"James Ardis takes Coldplay's A Head Full of Dreams and turns it into a madcap journey for spiritual fulfillment through Trip Advisor reviews, wanton product placement, tourist traps, and glimpses of Chris Martin. A manic, inventive, obsessive ode to an album of sublime mediocrity."
- Simon Jacobs, author of Palaces and Saturn
* Includes 1 copy.
* These are hand-bound and hand-printed ~ Colors and editions vary.
Also available as an ebook here!