I’m not really doing my blogga-playa bit for the US elections, but I am reading up on political dirt and lying tactics in the Arrogance of Power
by Anthony Summers. If you want political low-brows and sweaty, stumbling dissembling, you gotta go right to the source. I’ve read Hunter S. Thompson and Philip Roth on Nixon, and I thought to go for the legitimate biographical source. And how remarkably close that is to the fictional approach! It starts with the lies right on page one. And it keeps on getting crazier, dirtier, deluded and deranged as it goes along. Fascinating.
It’s not very often that a remix album sounds better than the original; it ain’t very often that I listen to remix albums with high expectations; in fact I hardly ever bother seeking them out at all. Producer’s and DJ’s cash-ins, I always thought, with of course certain marginal and mainstream exceptions — the Cure Mixed Up, or whenever my hero Brian Eno does a mix. To my ear, all them remixes end up sounding like disco, marrying whatever temporal shade of techno rules the dance floor to an attitude of cutting-edge ultra-hip chic marketing, and extended endlessly into tripe variation and boom-boom. It’s musical barrel-scraping within (what used to be) 12 inches, the kind of bottom-dollar trendification that drives the music industry, just like Sinatra descended to the Twist and Disco (yes) in addition to Budweiser commercials. The tired adherence to commercial pan-flashes and teenage demographics. They’re all clichés because the clichés are true. But then, I’ve always had a weakness for Dub. Simply because it’s never been a seasonal trend driven by dancing teens. Dub was always darker in its interpretation of (initially, reggae) music, riddled with ghosts and shadowy echoes and a deeper rhythm. Starker, crazier, rawer in its approach. Everything that DJs think sets them apart and above real musicians today was first developed and explored by the mad producers: Lee Perry, King Tubby et al. It was also one of the first true studio-based musical modes, the first instances of how we now define “remix”. The album in question here is Spacemonkeyz versus Gorillaz – Laika Come Home
. It’s good. It sounds like original analogue dub (though not as dirty and fuzzy). It’s far more interesting than the Gorillaz source album, it’s far removed. It doesn’t sound digitally tinny and disguises its ProTools very well. It’s got real instruments. It’s got some warped and dope effects. It’s a little nuts. It’s got acres of bottom. It’s consistent.