Archive for the ‘remixes’ Category

Beck Sucks I Love Beck

Tuesday, February 24th, 2015

Sorry for totally breaking my one post a week rule. Life has gotten very interesting as of late.

Interesting in a good way! But interesting in a way that has made it difficult to dedicate time to writing. Still and yet, I did manage to get one more installment of my Scrunged series up, this time looking at Bush. Take a look if you’d like to read my thoughts on one of the most forgettable multi-platinum rock bands of all-time.

Beck
Jack-Ass (Butch Vig Mix)
Devil’s Haircut (Remix By Mickey P.)
Okay, I need to rant about Beck winning album of the year at the Grammys. I know I’m late but I need to Kanye this shit.

That Beck album is garbage. Hot garbage. It’s sad bastard bullshit music for sad bastards. I’m sorry. I tried to listen to the entire thing but I just couldn’t. It’s boring, musically, lyrically, thematically, just about in every damn way imaginable. It has to be Beck’s worst album since Sea Change, another overrated piece of trash that critics have needlessly gone gaga over ever since its first release.

Beck’s best album is Midnite Vultures. I mean it.

What the hell is so special about Sea Change and Morning Phase? Both records could just be renamed Sad Man Sits In Front Of A Microphone And Whines.

Whoop.

De.

Shit.

Midnite Vultures, on the other hand, is a work of a wondrous genius. It’s Beck taking Prince and doing Prince better than 90% of Prince’s output for the past 20+ years. Taking funk and injecting it with an utterly leftfield production style and some of the strangest lyrics ever committed to tape. “Sexx Laws,” amazing. “Nicotine & Gravy,” funkified masterwork.” “Peaches & Cream,” down and dirty funk of the funkiest funkitude. And don’t even get me started on “Debra,” easily one of the greatest slow jams in history.

Midnite Vultures remains an entirely unique record not only in Beck’s discography, but in popular music. It’s a damn tragedy that it’s fallen to the wayside. First to Sea Change and now to Morning Phase.

Fuck sad beck. Funky beck for life.

Nirvana
Smells Like Teen Spirit (AV8 Remix 1)
Smells Like Teen Spirit (AV8 Remix 2)
Bootleg hip-house mixes from 2009. The first is rather standard, and just injects some added beats and an inane MC. The second is far more…well, I was going to say “interesting,” but maybe I should just be honest and go with “stupid.” It’s not even a remix as it is an entirely original rap track with the backing track of “Smells Like Teen Spirit” haphazardly plastered over it.

I mean, I love it, but I think Morning Phase is bullshit and Midnite Vultures is one of the best albums of the 20th century, so I’m obviously not one who should be trusted in the slightest.

Obscure Remixes By Oscar Winners

Friday, February 13th, 2015

High-caliber talent tonight.

12 Rounds
Pleasant Smell (Rethought By Trent Reznor, Keith Hillebrandt and Clint Mansell)
Pleasant Smell (Rethought By Charlie Clouser)
Pleasant Smell (Sniper’s Rit n Run Vocal Mix)
Pleasant Smell (Rethought By Clint Mansell And Keith Hillebrandt)
Pleasant Smell (Sniper’s Regular Specials Dub)
12 Rounds is a lesser-known industrial rock act from the mid-90s. They released two albums, Jitter Juice in 1996, and My Big Hero in 1998. That second album was on Trent Reznor’s Nothing Records and in fact the group went into the studio to record a third album, which was to be produced by Reznor, but it was never released.

I should probably point out at this time that 12 Rounds is singer Claudia Sarne and Atticus Ross, the latter of whom you may recognize as a frequent Trent Reznor collaborator. He produced/programmed every Nine Inch Nails album since With Teeth; was a member of Reznor’s side-project How To Destroy Angels; and served as co-composer with Reznor for the Academy Award winning score to The Social Network, as well as the scores to Gone Girl and The Girl With The Dragon Tattoo.

Pretty big step up from “dude in a band that opened for Sneaker Pimps.”

It’s funny that two of these remixes feature Clint Mansell, who also was a member of a lesser-known rock/industrial act (Pop Will Eat Itself) before abandoning the pop world and becoming an incredibly successful composer who has worked on films such as Requiem For A Dream, Black Swan, Moon and, um Doom. I sincerely believe it’s just a matter of time before he wins an Oscar as well, which will definitely make that remix the only alt-rock/industrial track featuring the work of three Academy Award winners.

Ryuichi Sakamoto
Heartbeat (Dance Mix)
Heartbeat (Tainai Kaiki II) – Returning To The Womb
Heartbeat (Ambiant Mix)
I’ll be honest, I’m just including these remixes tonight so I can say that this post has not one, not two, but three Academy Award winning composers (Sakamoto won for The Last Emperor). Also, that last track name isn’t a typo, it’s “ambiant.” I don’t know why.

 

Remixes I Forgot I Bought

Monday, February 9th, 2015

Time to clean house with shit I’ve had in my backlog for over a year.

DJ Rap
Good To Be Alive (Johnny Vicious Short Epic Mix)
Good To Be Alive (Johnny Vicious Dub)
Good To Be Alive (Dronez Vocal Mix)
Good To Be Alive (Dronez Dub)
I will be entirely honest and say that I know very little about DJ Rap. I know she’s immensely talented, and that most of her popular work (house/dance music) has little in common with most of her actual work (drum and bass/jungle). I also know that this song was in the film Go, a movie that I have to re-watch someday to see if it has become a wonderful time capsule of the late-90s or a horribly dated Pulp Fiction rip-off. I suspect it is some combination.

Anyway. Yeah, even at the time that I bought this I neither knew much nor cared about DJ Rap. In fact, I don’t even know when I bought this record. I know I recorded it to my computer near the tail-end of 2013, but that just means I recorded it during my marathon recording session in which I digitized every single record in my collection that I hadn’t yet. As the clock was ticking before I packed them all up in storage before my big move to Japan. I suspect I probably had this record in my “to record” pile for over year before I actually recorded it.

Thinking about it now, this record very much serves as an example as how I used to buy records, and serves as a contrast to how I buy music now.

When I was living in Pittsburgh, in a rather large house, I was buying records like no tomorrow. I lived right by Jerry’s Records, the largest vinyl-only record shop in the world, and had vast amounts of disposable income and time (for reasons that I am not getting into).

Turns out that time + money + space = far too many needless purchases. Some of this worked out for the best. I would have never discovered Slow Bongo Floyd, Fay Ray, The Hitmen or countless other forgotten acts if it wasn’t for my nearly indiscriminate record buying habits.

But at the same time, it kind of turned listening to music into a chore. When you buy anywhere between 10 and 30 12″ singles and LPs a week, it doesn’t allow for much time to really absorb music. My turntable became a revolving door, and making the time to actually set aside music to review became increasingly difficult.

Now, with limited space and time, my record buying habits have drastically changed. With rare exception, I find myself buying no more than three or so LPs a day, and they’re usually albums. And my reasons for buying music has changed as well. Before I was often grabbing music solely because I thought it was out-of-print or hard-to-find, making it prime fodder for this blog. That was regardless of whether I thought I would like it or not (this explains why I at one point owned 12 Leather Nun records). Now I actually buy music because I think I’ll like it. I know, a crazy concept. Although I still do buy a hefty amount of records and CDs simply because I think they’re stupid, weird or idiotic, how else would I have bought that Hulk Hogan LP?

But yeah, I did buy this single, and I recorded it. So I guess I should finally share it. So to the one person out there who wants it, enjoy!

The Shamen
Make It Mine (Hilltop Mix)
Move Any Mountain (Progen 91) (Land Of Oz)
Move Any Mountain (Progen 91) (Rude)
Move Any Mountain (Progen 91) (Bang To The Beat)
Move Any Mountain (Progen 91) (Beltram Dub)
Move Any Mountain (Progen 91) (The Bones Break Mastermix)
The Sound Of Pro-Gen (Horns, Guitars, Keyboards, Chorus, Bang, No. 1)
Everything I just said about the DJ Rap single does double here.

 

Game Music Disco

Friday, January 30th, 2015

I think my new thing will be to post tracks from artists who have as little in common as possible from now on. So tonight, here’s some 80s disco by a soul diva and a remix to a video game theme song.

Sara Dash
Low Down Dirty Rhythm
Low Down Dirty Rhythm (Radio Version)
Low Down Dirty Rhythm (Instrumental Version)
Been a while since I posted some Patrick Cowley produced disco, so I thought I’d dig this one up out of the vaults. And by “the vaults” I mean my massive iTunes playlist of songs I’ve been meaning to share here for the past few years. I really have to work on thinning that thing out. I’ve had some Shamen and DJ Rap remixes in there for over two years. Does anyone want Shamen and DJ Rap remixes?

Anyways, Sara Dash. She was in LaBelle, although her solo stuff never reached the heights of “Lady Marmalade.” She has a hell of a voice, and this is a damn great dance tune.

Konami
Contra (魂斗羅) Super Sweep Remix
I’ve been buying a lot of game music in Japan. Too damn much to be exact. So in an effort to justify my insane habit I’ve started reviewing old game soundtracks over at my other blog Mostly-Retro. So far I’ve put up two; one on the very first game music release Video Game Music, and another on an obscure Konami Compilation. I like writing them and I plan to keep at it for some time. So if that’s something that interests you be sure to check them out.

This bizarre remix of the music from Contra isn’t really from a game music release proper. I found it on a mini-CD that came with a PS2 repackaged version of Contra, which also came with a DVD that I have yet to play. I guess the package, which is titled Oretachi Game Center Zoku: Contra, is pretty damn rare, so I’m pretty stoked about finding it for 10 bucks.

 

Prince San

Friday, January 16th, 2015

I bought another Hulk Hogan album. At least, he’s on the picture disc. Stay tuned for the horrors I might find within.

Prince
Mountains (Extended Version)
Alexa De Paris
Whenever I buy a Prince single I end up being entirely blown away by the everything of everything on it. I really need to buy more Prince albums.

This remix of “Mountains” is ten freaking minutes long. That’s 10 minutes of Prince at peak funk. Be careful while listening to it, that much Prince peak funk has been known to cause injuries.

“Alexa De Paris” is a guitar solo by Prince. If you need more information that to download it then I don’t know what the fuck is wrong with you.

Ryuichi Sakamoto & Robin Scott
The Left Bank
The Arrangement
Just About Enough
Once In A Lifetime
I’ve talked at length about Sakamoto on this blog before, so I’m not going to say anymore about him. But I assume most of you don’t know who Robin Scott is. At least, you probably don’t know him by his actual name.

Robin Scott is the dude behind the group M, meaning he is the person who brought us “Pop Music.” And now that song is stuck in your head and I apologize.

I don’t know how this collaborative effort with Sakamoto came to be, but I do know that it birthed a complete album, and not just the 12″ single from which I grabbed these tracks. I’ll have to find that sometime, as these songs are quite good. They kind of sound like mid-era Japan, which is not surprising at all, as Scott is doing his damnedest David Sylvian/David Bowie impression on these tracks.

Frankie for the New Year

Sunday, January 4th, 2015

Happy new year’s everyone!

This week marks my one year anniversary of moving to Japan! Holy shit! It’s been a year already and it only feels like…actually, it feels like it’s been a year. With all the amazing highs and shitty lows (most of which are behind me yay) I went through since I moved here, I’d be lying if I said it was all roses, or that it was so great that the time just flew on by. However, it has been, and continues to be, the most amazing and incredible experience of my life and I can’t wait to continue it for years to come.

And there are so many great records stores here! See what I bought?!

Frankie Goes To Hollywood
Welcome To The Pleasuredome (Urban Mix)
I recently bought that gigantic Inside The Pleasuredome box set. I liked it, but found it lacking in really rare and worthwhile bonus material. I wonder who will have to die for us to get a really complete and in-depth Welcome To The Pleasuredome box set. I wish ZZT would just do the right damn thing and put out EVERYTHING Frankie in one massive box set instead of doling it out piecemeal, with a couple of tracks on one compilation, a few others on another. I would gladly pay hundreds of dollars for a comprehensive Frankie Goes To Hollywood box set, and I know I’m not the only one. Besides, the longer they hold the good stuff back, the more assholes like me are likely to share what they’ve accumulated over the years.

This track is from the 1985 Japan-only compilation Bang!, not to be confused with the greatest hits album of the same name. Bang! is a six-track EP, and includes three album cuts, “War (Hidden),” “Two Tribes (Hibakusha)” and the above remix. Everything on the EP is now in-print and easy to find, save for the one I’m sharing tonight. Why has ZZT never bothered to re-release it? Probably because they need it in their vaults for another compilation they’re readying. Wankers.

Kavinsky
Protovision (Sebastien Tellier Version)
The original version of “Protovision” is from Kavinsky’s album Outrun, which, despite Kavinsky’s dreams, has nothing to do with the Sega arcade classic of the same name. It is a quality album though, and I suggest you pick it up. I scored this off of a 12″ single that had several other remixes of the tune as well. However, they’re all available digitally, so you’re only getting this one here. Buy the rest if you like it – they’re really good!

Primal Scream
Stuka (Two Lone Swordsmen Mix)
Stuka (Two Lone Instrumental Swordsmen Mix)
Primal Scream is insane popular in Japan. I have no idea why. These are from a 12″ single.

Transcontinental Remixes

Tuesday, December 16th, 2014

I’ve bought so much music the past two weeks I don’t know what to do with it. I mean, besides listen to it. I know I should probably listen to it. But you know what I mean.

Busy times! Apparently Japanese people want to learn English before New Year’s. At least that’s what it feels like, as I am hella busy with work at the moment. There was also an election this past week, so everyone was talking about it.

And when I mean “it” I mean they were talking about the “big erection.” I heard how the “erection is mostly for show” and that “older people mostly care about the erection.”

Pronunciation is important people! Just last week I was trying to teach how to schedule meetings and one of my students kept saying “I have a slut available around 1pm.”

The best is when their English is good enough so I can actually explain what they’re saying, then they get a laugh out of it too. While those kind of mistakes are fun, I do remember that these people can speak English far far better than I can speak Japanese, and that I can make my own pronunciation mistakes as well. For example, last week I was trying to say “you are good looking” in Japanese, but instead I ended up saying “you got a nice pussy.”

So yeah, mistakes happen.

Speaking of mistakes, I wrote about Seven Mary Three and Paw last week.

Björk
Bachelorette (RZA Remix)
Bachelorette (Mark Bell “Blue” Remix)
Bachelorette (Mark Bell “Zip” Remix)
Bachelorette (Mark Bell “Optimism” Remix)
My Snare
I got these mixes from a CD-single/VHS tape box set that I bought for about three bucks. That means that since I arrived in Tokyo I’ve bought CDs, LPs, VHS tapes and even a pair of cassette tapes. I know it’s just a matter of time before I go full dumbass and buy a freaking laserdisc or betamax tape. Sigh. Someone stop me before it’s too late.

Madonna
Bye Bye Baby (N.Y. Hip Hop Mix)
Bye Bye Baby (Madonna’s Night On The Club)
Bye Bye Baby (Tallahasee Pop)
Bye Bye Baby (Rick Does Madonna’s Dub)
I own over 60 Madonna singles now. Japan’s been a great place to find some of her lesser work, like this forgotten single from the Erotica album. I really love the effects they put on Madonna’s vocals for this tune. She sounds like she’s singing through a tin can, but in a cool way. I enjoy the club mix the most, although all the dance beats and effects layered onto it really make the vocals sound out of place.

Yellow Magic Orchestra
Firecracker (Main Mix)
Firecracker (Beats Mix)
Technopolis (The Readymade Darlin’ Of Discotheque Track Dub Version)
Okay, real talk. These remixes aren’t that great. But I was really committed to this “three continents of remixes in one post” idea that it got the better of me. Sorry.

Kinky Go
Gimme The Love (Vocal Version)
Gimme The Love (Instrumental)
Gimme The Love (Radio Version)
Special italo disco request for the Pope. Well, a dude named Pope. Not the pope. At least not yet.

Obscure Remixes for Social Justice

Friday, December 5th, 2014

I took a week or so off because the world was too horrible to write about music. But here we all a week later and yo shit’s still horrible so I guess I’ll just keep plugging away at this silly little site

But seriously, I’m not depressed.

The fact that I’m not depressed kind of worries me, but hey, gotta live I guess.

I also realized that I’ve posted nothing but wrestling albums, Prince and Madonna for like forever and that it’s time for me to mix that shit up a bit.

Franz Ferdinand
Take Me Out (Naum Gabo Remix)
Take Me Out (Daft Punk Remix)
One of the funniest things I’ve seen in recent history was in 2013 when several reputable news outlets reported on this Daft Punk remix like it was brand new when it was, in fact, from 2004. I love it when shit like that happens, because it shows that the majority of online “news” reporting done these days is just site after site ripping each other off in a quest for the most hits possible. Original research be damned.

Anyways, I guess I really couldn’t blame them all for covering it once they discovered it. It is a pretty solid remix after all. The “Naum Gabo” one ain’t half bad either. I got these both from a 12″ single.

Bjork
Hunter (μ-Ziq Remix)
All Is Full of Love (In Love With: Funkstorung Mix)
Apparently you can’t upload a file via FTP if it has the “μ” character in it. Things you learn.

Purple Motherfunker

Tuesday, November 18th, 2014

I went to a horribly bad “game music” concert last week and wrote about it over at Mostly-Retro. Read it and be flabbergasted at how badly an organization could fuck up something that seems like such a no-brainer.

Then get purple and funky with Prince.

Prince
Gett Off (Urge Mix)
Gett Off (Urge Dub)
Gett Off (Flutestramental)
Gett Off (Thrust Mix)
Gett Off (Thrust Dub)
Gett Off (Rosie’s Dub)
Gett Off (Urge Single Edit)
Gett Off (Purple Pump Mix)
Gett Off (Housestyle)
I want to buy every single Prince album. Every single one. And then rank all of his songs in order of horniness. Even modern day Jehovah’s Witness Prince is a tiny purple horndog. His new song “PRETZELBODYLOGIC” is about a threesome that was so hot the people involved can’t defend themselves from being robbed. At least, I think it is. I don’t know, maybe I’m taking the lyrics too literally – but it’s definitely about boning.

Of course in terms of horny Prince songs, “Gett Off” is kind of the king. A few weeks ago I featured “Get Off” (notice the singular “t”) which is a pretty sex-fueled little number, but it can hold a lubricated candle to it’s misspelled cousin here. For any other artist this would be the most sexual single of their career, but for Prince, who released tracks like “Let’s Pretend We’re Married,” “Do Me, Baby,” “Do It All Night” and “Little Red Corvette” (spoiler:  the title isn’t about a car) it might not even make the top 10.

So here we are with nine mixes of the track, because why the fuck not. The dubs and instrumental mixes are interesting, but I’m only including them for the sake of being a completionist. The “Urge” and “Thrust” mixes are good, and definitely worth repeated listens, but they’re not as intense as the original version as they strip out the hard and heavy industrial beat that made the that such a powerful tune. That’s why the “Purple Pump” remix is probably my favorite of the bunch, as it’s just an extended version of the original. Hot.

The first six mixes are taken from a 12″ promo single I scored in Chiba  few weeks back, while the remaining three are from a CD single.

Additional Prince incoming soon.

The Most Beautiful Blog Post In The World

Monday, November 10th, 2014

His name is Prince. And he is funky.

And from what I hear he’s rather finicky too. But “My name is Prince, and I am rather finicky” isn’t a good lyric.

Prince
The Most Beautiful Girl In The World (Beautiful)
The Most Beautiful Girl In The World (Staxowax)
The Most Beautiful Girl In The World (Mustang Mix)
The Most Beautiful Girl In The World (Flutestramental)
The Most Beautiful Girl In The World (Sexy Staxophone And Guitar)
The Most Beautiful Girl In The World (Mustang Instrumental)
I’m on a big Prince kick right now, thanks largely to his two new albums, well mostly just one of them. Because while Art Official Age is pretty good, PLECTRUMELECTRUM is fantastic, easily one of my favorite records of the year. Prince’s guitar work on the album is otherworldly, and it has some of his best songs in decades. “PRETZELBODYLOGIC” is the hottest song ever named after a baked bread product, that’s for sure. You should buy that record.

Prince’s two new albums are also noteworthy because they’re his first albums with Warner Bros. since 1996, and supposedly signal a new relationship between the artist and the label that will see the re-release of all his old albums complete with bonus tracks. First up on the docket will be Purple Rain, and oh my god a 3CD deluxe edition of that album just might kill me with awesome.

Although if they fuck that up I might kill someone.

Anyways, “The Most Beautiful Girl In The World.” These mixes are from a 1994 EP entitled The Beautiful Experience. As the title suggests, its nothing more than various mixes of “The Most Beautiful Girl In The World,” the six remixes I’m including above, as well as the single version.

Does the world really need six remixes of “The Most Beautiful Girl In The World?” Eh, probably not. But I’m in a Prince mood so here’s Prince. Expect more Prince soon. Prince.

Prince.