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Joemus album nearing completion - click opera
February 2010
 
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Tue, Aug. 12th, 2008 07:29 pm
Joemus album nearing completion

A slight dearth of entries at the moment because I'm recording music for the forthcoming Momus / Joemus album. No, wait, it's the other way around! I'm usually blogging simply because I'm not making music!



I think I now have a final running order for the record, which should be delivered to the various record labels in September, for release... well, when they see fit, really.

I think it's officially called Mr Proctor (or possibly Vaudevillian or possibly Punky Like a Tribble) and I think it runs something like this:

1. Birocracy (2.59): Lots of backing vocals, kind of glam nonsense lyrics, Joe blipping and drumming and taking the solos with samples jumping out all over the place. "I would play my big bassoon on the moon... to glitter the culture".

2. Widow Twanky (3.12): Basically inspired by Cliff Richard and big melodramatic 1950s ballads, this is the tale of a man who becomes a transvestite in order to incorporate the lost woman he loves. Joe blows a plastic sax solo in the middle. There's already an Idle Tigers cover version of this, though it's a bloody odd one.

3. Mr Proctor (2.37): This one -- the title track -- you know, because it's already on YouTube. It's also on THRASH'R, the new album from Germlin, Joe's solo project on ADAADAT records, though the version on the Momus record is a bit different.



There's a character coming through on the slow bits (my bits) in Mr Proctor, someone who sounds like Tony Newley. This character emerges in some other songs on the album, which turns out to be persona-driven, and to use lots of electronic processing on my voice -- as well as Cockney and Scottish accents -- in order to bring these characters to the fore.

4. Thatness and Thereness (3.09): This one is also already on YouTube. It's my cover of Ryuichi Sakamoto's 1980 song, and I like it enough to put it on my own record. But rather than post that here again, I want to post this wonderful cover sung by a Yamaha Vocaloid 2 song robot called Miku Hatsune. The video is by Jahshaka. Gorgeous! Reminds me of Delaware's Graphic Designin' in the Rain, somehow.



5. The Jah Wise Hammer of the Babylon King (3.51): This sounds like 8-bit T. Rex. Joe made it without even knowing about it, because it's bits of another song we made together chopped up and spliced together in a completely new order (a starting point for quite a few songs on the album, in fact) with new lyrics and melody on top. The lyrics are inspired by the film Rockers, and the walks of the various reggae musicians who play themselves. Many of them are named in the song.

6. The Next Time (2.57): My cover of the ballad Cliff sings in the Summer Holiday movie. I don't know why this song became so important to me in the run-up to making this album, but it's something to do with wanting to be torchy and sentimental-absurdist.



7. The Cooper o' Fife (2.58): The folk song called the Cooper of Fife was something I remember loving in music lessons at the Edinburgh Academy. Miss Newman sang it to us with such articulation -- this story of a man who married a lady too refined to work. My version is more The Wife of Bath's tale; it's a jig (resembling a folk song played by a computerised Bay City Rollers) about someone who "married the man with the handicap that put St Andrews on the map" -- and about fifty other men too, including said cooper.

8. Ichabod Crane (3.14): The legend of sleepy hollow set to music that Howard Devoto's magazine might have made in 1979. The first version was just a Spiral Scratch parody, but I couldn't get the Manchester-punk accent right. There's a great Joe prog-blip hoedown at the end. Every time you think it's ended it pipes up again.

9. Strewf (2.46): This is Cockney rhyming song, sort of Chas and Dave in a Victorian workhouse singing road gang songs. If they made bubbling, clicking digital musicals, this one would be in a Lionel Bart Dickens adaptation. As the song says, "Who'd put it past a plastic person tugging on the larmey jacket? Spilled all yer elly kippens darlin, porrocked 'em over yer ciggy packet".

10. Dracula (4.18): Momus and Kyoka (who has a new album out!) enact some kind of vampire sex scene, except the vampire is too old to get it up and Kyoka is "the kind of girl who does not take rejection lying down". As thunderstorms flicker and Kyoka "has orgasm in Kyoto", the odd couple try to get even -- until the song suddenly becomes a sort of batcave dance from the Prince Batman soundtrack.

11. The Mouth Organ (2.57): This is a new version of a song that appeared on the Milky album I made in New York with my ex-wife Shazna. It's about a witness in court describing a hit-and-run accident using only a mouth organ, and it's about the difficulty of ushering in a post-car age, as well as the difficulty of recreating human experience using words or anything else, for that matter. The arrangement is wonderfully quirky-staggery, yet the melody ensures it never loses its balance.

12. The Man You'll Never Be (5.56): The newest song on the album -- written and recorded this morning, in fact -- is the one I like best at the moment (but the latest always is). Over a Pachelbel-like cycle of fifths, a woman (me in electronic voice drag, as I was in Widow Twanky) tells a man that she doesn't care who he is or what he does, because to her he'll always be "the man you'll never be". Because of the uniqueness of who he'll never be, she tells him, she loves No Other -- and No Other's brother, and the art school lab technician too.

13. Fade to White (4.28): Imagine an 80s Italian disco diva reciting T.S. Eliot while mouldering in an early grave. That's what this song sounds like. Stabbing, nagging synth riffs never sounded so decadent and delicate.

14. The Vaudevillian (4.24): Another very recent song (last weekend). This song takes the music hall cliché of the sad clown who bids his audience adieu forever into grimly grotesque parody. It's the final appearance of the Tony Newley character who first appeared in the Mr Proctor song, in fact. As he rots into the sunset, lying in his red plush coffin, the character leaves an ear-worm in your head even as the worms start to consume his own flesh. "Some lament while others disinfect".



And there it is, nearing completion, fourteen songs, fifty minutes, from fast to slow and back again, the eighteenth studio album from Momus. Co-written and co-produced by Germlin, aka Joe Howe, a young Glaswegian (from Perth, actually, and soon Aberdeen) born the same year Momus was (1984), and 24 years after Nick Currie popped out of his mother's womb in Paisley.

28CommentReply

dogsolitude_v2
dogsolitude_v2
dogsolitude_v2
Tue, Aug. 12th, 2008 06:01 pm (UTC)

Have you ever tried making music with this sort of stuff?

http://blog.lilyapp.org/lily/demo/

I was looking for some info on Reaktor, got distracted, found this and thought you/Joe may be interested.


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imomus
imomus
imomus
Tue, Aug. 12th, 2008 06:15 pm (UTC)

I was hoping the New York Times would sound more like Charles Ives!


ReplyThread Parent
dogsolitude_v2
dogsolitude_v2
dogsolitude_v2
Tue, Aug. 12th, 2008 06:25 pm (UTC)

It sounds like Ives dropping cutlery down concrete stairs...

I've downloaded the kit anyway, as the subsequent clips on the blog showed some really interesting-looking music interfaces. I'll see what I can do with it at some point when I get some time (bit preoccupied with other matters atm)

Good luck with the album release!


ReplyThread Parent

(Anonymous)
Tue, Aug. 12th, 2008 06:05 pm (UTC)
Strewf!

first to post. Yay!

Sounds amazing, am looking forward to its eventual release, hope it's going to be this year...

Are you settled on releasing it under the name Joemus, or Momus?

The Mouth Organ is the second best song on the Milky LP; I love Invisible Man and Jackie O...

And another thing, I've asked before - is there any sign of seeing 'Book of Jokes' published in my native English, this year?

James x


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imomus
imomus
imomus
Tue, Aug. 12th, 2008 06:23 pm (UTC)
Re: Strewf!

Cherry Red insisted it should go out under the artist name of Momus.

I'm semi-resigned to The Book of Jokes only coming out, at least initially, in French and German, but maybe La Volte will manage to interest some enlightened and adventurous Anglosphere publisher. They're working on that now and, having sent it to just one British publisher (to very little effect), I'm leaving them to it. French and German editions are due in October 2009.


ReplyThread Parent
sm255
sm255
sm255
Tue, Aug. 12th, 2008 06:07 pm (UTC)

I like Vaudevillian... or Vaudevillain...


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imomus
imomus
imomus
Tue, Aug. 12th, 2008 06:13 pm (UTC)

I think every Momus album has had Vaudevillian or Vaudevillain as a possible title -- but this time there's a song to go with it.


ReplyThread Parent

(Anonymous)
Tue, Aug. 12th, 2008 06:23 pm (UTC)
fuck you you are my type

who done the writing on the wall ?
that picture is beautifull..
i love you both...........
xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx


ReplyThread Parent
imomus
imomus
imomus
Tue, Aug. 12th, 2008 06:24 pm (UTC)
Re: fuck you you are my type

I dunno who done it, it wiz close to Chai Ovni in Glesga.


ReplyThread Parent

(Anonymous)
Wed, Aug. 13th, 2008 10:35 pm (UTC)
Re: fuck you you are my type

I'm glad it's real, it looks too perfectly color coordinated aka planned-like

-different anonymous than the one above


ReplyThread Parent
brokenjunior
brokenjunior
Tue, Aug. 12th, 2008 08:42 pm (UTC)
Re: fuck you you are my type

かわいいいい!


ReplyThread Parent
electricwitch
electricwitch
For anything, oh! she´ll bust her elastic
Tue, Aug. 12th, 2008 06:47 pm (UTC)

"until the song suddenly becomes a sort of batcave dance from the Prince Batman soundtrack."

Holy shit, this had better deliver, Momus, or I will never love again.

Cliff Richard. lol you're such a Bolan fanboy.


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eptified
eptified
H. Duck
Tue, Aug. 12th, 2008 07:20 pm (UTC)

It strikes me how much "the next time" sounds like an early momus demo.. wonderful, wonderful..


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(Anonymous)
Tue, Aug. 12th, 2008 07:55 pm (UTC)

Momus,

I found this, your 18th studio recording, disappointing. The sound was artificial. I didn't get the sense that there was a band of musicians playing together in a room. I thought your lyrics overly impersonal. Where is the real Nick Currie, I seemed to ask?


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imomus
imomus
imomus
Tue, Aug. 12th, 2008 08:08 pm (UTC)

Ha! A lovely parody of rockist criticism!


ReplyThread Parent

(Anonymous)
Tue, Aug. 12th, 2008 11:03 pm (UTC)

couldn't disagree more, I think ocky milk is a complete masterpiece, probably the most eclectic and musically brilliant momus record to date, I think the oskar trilogy are momus' best albums to date, all three are just incredibly good


ReplyThread Parent

(no subject) - (Anonymous)
imomus
imomus
imomus
Tue, Aug. 12th, 2008 08:35 pm (UTC)

My version is less hetero-normative. There's no return to male dress at the end.


ReplyThread Parent
count_vronsky
count_vronsky
Tue, Aug. 12th, 2008 08:54 pm (UTC)

Can't wait momus!

And speaking of the Vaudevillian,

I went to see a psychiatrist yesterday and told him that my wife thinks that she is a refrigerator.

"Relax," he said, "it sounds like a harmless complex."

"I know, I know, but she sleeps with her mouth open and the light keeps me awake!"


ps - I'm in love with a girl, finest girl in the world...

pss - go Team USA Badminton!








Edited at 2008-08-12 09:52 pm (UTC)


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kineticfactory
kineticfactory
this is not your sawtooth wave
Tue, Aug. 12th, 2008 10:45 pm (UTC)

I can't wait to hear the finished album.

The description of Widow Twanky made me think of Genesis P-Orridge and Jacqueline Breyer. Did their story influence you at all?


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imomus
imomus
imomus
Tue, Aug. 12th, 2008 11:03 pm (UTC)

Actually, I do often think it fits them -- I thought of mentioning that in this post, but had second thoughts, because it's so much bigger and more serious and real in their case.


ReplyThread Parent
qscrisp
qscrisp
Tue, Aug. 12th, 2008 11:02 pm (UTC)

I'm looking forward to it. The album, I mean.


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(Anonymous)
Wed, Aug. 13th, 2008 12:37 am (UTC)

Looking forward to it!

Love from hot Tokyo

Antonin


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akabe
akabe
alin huma
Wed, Aug. 13th, 2008 02:59 am (UTC)

excellent; sounds really good, seriously looking forward ... bb..but.. shouldn't you now be blogging about the japanese female soccer team and the link between the girls' scoring power (as opposed to their male counterparts inability to even find the goal) and amaterasu vaginarchy and all ,, instead of fiddling with sound equipment.


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petit_paradis
petit_paradis
erik
Wed, Aug. 13th, 2008 08:23 am (UTC)

your description of the songs sound like its "the ultraconformist" of the 21century. (all the vaudiville and cockney personas)


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digitalheir
digitalheir
Wed, Aug. 13th, 2008 01:35 pm (UTC)

It's coming along nicely for what I can hear, though I can imagine getting a bit of a headache listening to the hardcore noise from the likes of 'Mr. Proctor' for too long.


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cap_scaleman
cap_scaleman
cap_scaleman
Wed, Aug. 13th, 2008 06:33 pm (UTC)

Sounds like this album will be a whole lots of fun.


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(Anonymous)
Wed, Aug. 13th, 2008 10:32 pm (UTC)

Any House remixes in the pipeline? lol


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thomascott
thomascott
Thomas Scott
Wed, Aug. 13th, 2008 11:07 pm (UTC)

Now this is something to look forward to.
Love the idea of a Devoto-styled Momus telling The Legend of Sleepy Hollow.


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