Tuesday, October 24, 2023

Overground Obedience

Who knew that Underground Resistance had a sub-label dedicated to some of the most bouncy sunny-side up piano house around? 

Happy Records! Songs about sunshine and love for all the world! 

Mad Mike even renamed himself Glad Mike for this perky little number (not really - but he should have)

Such a warm, bright, yellow-y sunflowers sort of sound. 

I was hoping for a Doors sample in that one. 

A lot of the organic-y keyboard sounds remind me of "Plastic Dreams", one of the not-hardcore tunes of that time that I really loved. Fantastic record, but very far indeed from the extremes of militancy elsewhere brewing, from jungle techno to gabber to UR themselves.

It's doing my head in a bit - these are the people who did "Death Star" and "Rage" and tracks dedicated to things like the U-boat crews's unchivalrous torpedo-without-a-warning approach to victory at all costs! 

Then again, I suppose - really quite soon, with the Martian releases and Galaxy 2 Galaxy and "Hi-Tech Jazz" and that kind of thing, Mike Banks would be outing his secret George Benson-loving side, within the UR-the-label discography. Not shunted to a sub-label. 

Divas n' all!  

Did they just fancy a bit of that Crystal Waters crossover action?

This next one is by the son of James Jamerson Jnr, aka the mighty bassman on all those Motown eternals

sad-not-glad ending to his story, though - "found death in Denver, Colorado on April 2006 (aged 39)"

A typo (presumably meant to write ''found dead") that is unexpectedly poetic... 

Wednesday, October 18, 2023

one more chance for Autechre?

Inspired by this really interesting, long-long-long interview with Autechre by Droid, I thought I might give them boys another go....  

Would be the third time of trying, if we count the initial back-in-the-day listening.

Got rid of nearly all the CDs years ago - where shall I start?  Tips, playlists, beginner's guide to , all very much welcomed.

Bear in mind, though, my entrenched position is 1/ no grooves 2/ no tunes 3/ no discernible emotions or even moods.... so evidence proffered to the contrary is unlikely to be persuasive... 

Much more likely to be swayed by extremes of abstraction.... absolute unhuman inhospitable uninhabitable inclemency...  the kind of unreachable alienness gestured at in the devastating denouement to Stanislaw Lem's Fiasco...

I do remember being quite impressed by Confield, for instance...

Did I quite-like Oversteps

Thing is, I can't remember. And that is the main issue, I just find their stuff resolutely evades memory. There's no element in it, on any level, that sticks. 

Woebot had a great description of Autechre's inutility and extraneousness -  something like "a pipesmoking breakdancer"

That momentarily made me think, "something I'd like to see-hear!"

Any group that could inspire this degree of precision-loathing eloquence has got to have something going for it... 

Friday, October 13, 2023

jittery in the jungle

jelly-wobbling vocal science, running a shudder through a very familiar sample

 (heard at around 6.07 below)

Not familiar (to me, and nor to most I should imagine) from the original Jocelyn Brown tune, however -  but from an earlier teknorave tune that sampled JB and transformed a soul-moan into a wraith-like shiver-sound.

 (first wuthering iteration at 1.01)

Thursday, October 5, 2023

Midnight Girls


Second panel in the sublime triptych "Now I Need You / Working the Midnight Shift / Queen for A Day", the continuously mixed song-suite that takes up side 2 of the double album Once Upon A Time. The absolute zenith of the Donna Summer / Giorgio Moroder / Pete Bellote synergy, this shimmering  electrodisco captures the lonely beauty of the city -  Kraftwerk's "Neon Lights" shot through with the desolation of Burial's "Night Bus". 

I'm just a working girl, just earning a living

When the city's waking up, I'm going home

While my friends are all out

They've all gone out dancing

They're out having fun

Working that midnight shift

For that extra little something

The things that are out of my reach

I need so bad

Seems like I'm always leaving

When all the others arrive

My body still carries on

But I'm dying inside

Six years later, Dislocation Dance, Manchester postpunk discofunkish outfit, did this reinterpretation of "Working the Midnight Shift" as "Midnight Shift", the title track of their third and final album. They have brought out a buried implication, or at least possibility latent in the original song: street prostitution.

Thematically this remake could be a fusion of Summer's 1977 "Working the Midnight Shift"  and her 1979 smash "Bad Girls"

Or a bridge between Summer's original "Midnight Shift" and her last big hit "She Works Hard for the Money"