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click opera - Messing with Major Joe
February 2010
 
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Mon, Feb. 12th, 2007 01:09 am
Messing with Major Joe

At the end of January Kamal Ackarie, an artist I met at a Blow de la Barra opening last summer, sent me a mail about a box set of singles he plans to release, a sort of tribute to the music of the early 1980s.



Kamal was asking artists to cover tracks that had influenced them in some way. A dream ticket would involve Ryoji Ikeda doing, for instance, "Back in Black" by AC/DC, Carsten Nicolai doing Madonna's "Music", Fennesz doing AHA's "Hunting High and Low", and so on.

I said I'd like to do David Bowie's "Ashes to Ashes", but do it as a collaboration with Joe Howe from Germlin and Gay Against You. Joe, luckily, agreed. So I've been doing vocals and some instrumental stuff for our collaboration, and I have my own version of the track which Joe will be working on. He's totally free to throw away, add or alter whatever he wants, so it's going to sound nothing like this when it's done. He'll use different drums, for a start, and maybe even put them in time! Or even more out of time!

But I thought I'd sling up the demo here today just to let you hear the work in progress. It's going to sound totally different when it's finished. I'm hoping it'll blow this one out of the water.

Momus (pre-Germlin) Ashes to Ashes demo (stereo mp3 file, 4mins 7secs, 3.8MB)

18CommentReplyShare

iloveacomputer
-
Mon, Feb. 12th, 2007 12:40 am (UTC)

Joe had some good midi piano going on before I left the flat today, but I'm quite glad I wasn't around to chart the progress. He refuses to wear headphones when he's writing music and that bloody metronome pip on cubase is infuriating after an hour or five, aghh.


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imomus
imomus
imomus
Mon, Feb. 12th, 2007 12:43 am (UTC)

Ooh, that's exciting!


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dehumidifier
dehumidifier
that kid who had a report due on space
Mon, Feb. 12th, 2007 01:05 am (UTC)

my favorite bowie song!


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pay_option07
pay_option07
Mon, Feb. 12th, 2007 01:18 am (UTC)
Smashing

Luv the mix and Bowie too!

Any interest in "Man who Sold the World"+++++


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niddrie_edge
niddrie_edge
raymond
Mon, Feb. 12th, 2007 01:42 am (UTC)

Is that the all american family commercial for film from Man Who Fell To Earth?

Me I am a seventies whore mashing up Stomu Yamashta instrumentals.


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whirlings
whirlings
Nikolas
Mon, Feb. 12th, 2007 02:34 am (UTC)
nothing's going to touch you in these golden years

i very much admire your rendition of ashes to ashes. not much a demo unless we consider the absence of absinthe-drenched mandolins and subliminal man-love prose. i've been considering working with some bowie tunes. well, i've got my big momus concept album to finish first. recall that little ditty i sent you once? expect a few more to flood the vacant halls of dance.


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(Anonymous)
Mon, Feb. 12th, 2007 02:38 am (UTC)

Nice!


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xishimarux
xishimarux
ishimaru
Mon, Feb. 12th, 2007 02:40 am (UTC)

The drums sound a bit off.. or on... but I love the strings and vocals have the Momus charm which is always cool. I think you should break it apart for us "Bedroom Producers" so we can have a crack at it too :)


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akabe
akabe
alin huma
Mon, Feb. 12th, 2007 03:33 am (UTC)

very cool, a classic, somehow i feel I've heard this on the akashic records nice to see it take physical shape. (for goodness, 'pictures of jap girls in synthesis' etc were momus lines to start with wasn't it? )


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danser
danser
Eben
Mon, Feb. 12th, 2007 05:15 am (UTC)

Incidentally. Your track "Morality Is Vanity" off of Forbidden Software Timemachine is featuring as curtain call music for a student production of Stoppard's "The Invention of Love" at Williams College in Massachusetts. I hope that doesn;t come as a shock to you. Thanks for recording it.


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(Anonymous)
Mon, Feb. 12th, 2007 05:55 am (UTC)
rroland and you

Hey Nick, remember Rroland doing a super fantastic cover of Ashes to Ashes several times when we travelled and played with him a few summers back? I'm a bit surprised you didn't ask him to work on it with you as his rendition was even more interesting than the original...which is really something to be said and usually not at all the case, you know?
love,
John Flesh
ps-find my two new releases on two different labels in two different formats due out within the next three months, please and thank you.

fashionflesh.com


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mongoltrophies
mongoltrophies
yasser mohammed apoplipo
Mon, Feb. 12th, 2007 10:46 am (UTC)
More? I could picture you singing all of Low

"Always Crashing in the Same Car"
or "Oh! You Pretty Things"
please, as collaborations with... eh, you tell me.
I'd even be happy to hear the Momus version of "Young Americans." I hope you can play the saxophone.


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charleshatcher
charleshatcher
charleshatcher
Mon, Feb. 12th, 2007 12:25 pm (UTC)

Some friends and I produced a Bowie tribute CD a number of years ago. I did a somewhat lugubrious, distorted and ethereal version of Ashes To Ashes, The Vile Bodies provided a rather disturbing, nickcavesque, clip-chop recording of Scary Monsters (and Super Creeps), and Barry Cullen and his beauette, Sophie Cocault, submitted perhaps my favourite track to the collection, a franco-eletropop Andy Warhol.

The Lubricants -- Ashes To Ashes
Barry's Electric Workshop (feat. Anne Sophie Cocault) -- Andy Warhol
The Vile Bodies -- Scary Monsters (and Super Creeps)


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electricwitch
electricwitch
For anything, oh! she´ll bust her elastic
Mon, Feb. 12th, 2007 03:58 pm (UTC)

Brain says: Bowie with orange hair and cocaine figure = win.

That remix is mental. Good to dance to.


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(Anonymous)
Mon, Feb. 12th, 2007 05:09 pm (UTC)

What's the point in that?


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(Anonymous)
Mon, Feb. 12th, 2007 07:31 pm (UTC)

Though it is a seminal track, it has to be said -- I'm paying attention! -- that Madonna's "Music" isn't from the 80s...

Thanks for the demo!

FrF


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neve_azul
neve_azul
neve_azul
Tue, Feb. 13th, 2007 05:16 am (UTC)

I really enjoy the way you processed your voice to sound much like Bowie's.
Happy birthday, by the way.


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robincarmody
robincarmody
Thu, Feb. 15th, 2007 04:36 am (UTC)

The original has always been one of my favourite songs EVER, precisely because it effectively writes off the 80s before they even happened; it sounds like Bowie actively wanted it to be the last song any of us ever heard, the final message of a collapsing civilisation. Nothing else better encapsulates the sheer dread of 1980, and I'm ineffably proud of the fact that it was UK number one when I was born.

This version is recognisably ... *embryonic*. If you imagine that the Pet Shop Boys had originally recorded it many years later as a kind of tribute, with all the original context drained out (which is what it sounds like), it isn't bad. But it's clearly not a finished product. I can conceive of an interpretation which is both similar in *atmosphere* to the original and (of necessity) sonically different, if only because that mood - so distant at the height of my Momus fandom - has been hovering around us again for such a long half-decade-ish now.


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