Go

He’s a funny character Moby- the veganism and the Christianity along with the love of 80s punk and hardcore, the flitting from one genre to another, the hardcore punk album and the multi-million selling Play where every song was licensed to sell one product or another. It makes him difficult to pin down, which is possibly the intention. Maybe it makes him just like the rest of us, a bag of interests and contradictions rather than a cartoon or a one dimensional media person. It may also explain why I only have a sporadic interest in his career. Yesterday’s This Perfect Life (from 2013) being the first time that I’d really paid any attention since Play (1999) although he did record a cover version of New Dawn Fades with New Order for the Twenty Four Hour Party People film. But I was pretty unfussed by that. The first time I encountered him was on his 1990 rave single Go, a classic of its kind. Sampling Laura Palmer’s Theme from Twin Peaks and vocals snatched from Tones On Tail and Jocelyn Brown it ┬áreached the top ten in the UK. The video is very 1990 and I don’t have the song on my hard drive right now so it’ll have to do for today.

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When You Had Me In Your Hands

You might remember that in 2013 (and 2014) I raved about Andrew Weatherall’s remix of The Perfect Life, from Moby’s album Innocents. Weatherall turned The Perfect Life into Another Perfect Life, adding house pianos, burbling synths, ecstasy and sheer sonic gold. The original isn’t too shabby either- acoustic guitars, gospel and a Flaming Lip. Moby wrote the song and then asked Wayne Coyne to sing on it. Wayne’s lyrics seem to be about the narcoleptic effect of drugs, a heroin user slipping away. Thus, I guess, The Perfect Life is not so perfect after all. I found a clip of Moby performing the song live in L.A. The woman with the big voice is Mindy Jones and she can definitely hit it. If you look closely Daenerys Targaryen from Game Of Thrones seems to be playing keyboards (Mother of Dragons, Breaker of Chains, Tinkler of Ivories). I’m also enjoying Moby’s slightly wonky guitar solo.

The Perfect Life

The video is equally feel good.

Bagging Area End Of Year List

This is my list, based on what has been played the most this year in the Bagging Area bunker, that was released this year. Judging by many of the names it looks like it could have been put together in 1991 and probably won’t have too many surprises for those that read this blog regularly. I really don’t seem to have stuck with new stuff by new artists this year. Two of my most played pieces of vinyl in 2013 have been Kolch’s Der Alte and Glass Candy’s Warm In The Winter, but both came out last year. I have gone for a dozen records (albums, singles, eps, ‘internet teasers’), plus a book.

Thirteen. Morrissey ‘Autobiography’
As Davy said, his best work for ages. Too much on the court case but the first half is superb. Far better than it could have been and full of music. And people he’s fallen out with.

Twelve. David Bowie ‘The Next Day’
But especially Where Are We Now, just as it was so unexpected. And so good.

Eleven. Two re-issues (cheating I know but it’s my list)- The Clash ‘Sound System’ and Bob Dylan ‘Another Self Portrait’.
Once you strip away the lovely ephemera and trinkets from The Clash box set you are left with the best re-mastering job I’ve heard. And the Dylan thing was a brand new look at some previously unreleased or unloved songs, beautifully played and sung.

Ten. Peter Gordon and Factory Floor ‘Beachcombing’.
Fifteen minutes of sound waves, rippling synths and Balearic loveliness.

Nine. Steve Mason ‘Monkey Minds In The Devil’s Time’. If only because in Come To Me and Fight Them Back Steve Mason released two of the year’s most affecting, emotion-laden songs, but in two very different ways.

Eight. Johnny Marr ‘Upstarts’.
A glorious upbeat guitar pop single from Mr Marr. The rest of the lp’s pretty good too.

Seven. Primal Scream ‘More Light’.
The more I lived with it, the better it got. Their best lp in a decade and though sprawling and heavy, it’s got depth, soul and invention, and they sound like they care again. Well done to David Holmes for the production job. It’s Alright It’s OK- the festival song it’s OK to love.

Six. Warpaint ‘Love Is To Die’.
New album in January. This is the best kind of advance warning- slinky, groovy dance rock from four girls who know exactly what they’re doing.

Five. Jeremy Deller ‘English Magic’ ep,
I love this- Voodoo Ray remixed by JD Twitch and Optimo. Steel drums, house piano, oh ooh ooh oh oh a ha yeah.

Four. A bagful of Andrew Weatherall remixes.
Emeliana Torrini’s Speed Of Dark, Jagwar Ma’s Come Save Me and Baris K’s 200. Spaced out dance pop, with dub basslines, indie -dance, eastern dance house. Taken together almost thirty minutes of far out bliss. But most of all the stupendous remix of Moby and Wayne Coyne’s Another Perfect Life. Still not out on vinyl. Why? Write to your MP now, start a petition, call the Omsbudsman. It’s a disgrace.

Three. Daniel Avery ‘Drone Logic’
Electronic music, techno and ambient and acid and all the rest, aimed the dance floor and the headspace. The last few songs are close to perfection, the first few will make you move your feet.

Two. my bloody valentine ‘mbv’.
What still gets me about this record is the sound- the way that some things sound dead close and some sound dead far away and how much thought has gone into this. How no one else sounds anything like mbv do. new you is beautiful. And wonder 2 is the sound of a helicopter taking off at a drum and bass night,  twenty years ago and today, simultaneously. Don’t know why he’s abandoned capital letters but with this record he can do what he likes.

One. The Asphodells ‘Ruled By Passion, Destroyed By Lust’.
Simply my most played album of the year- twelve tracks mixing up dub, early 80s punk-funk, John Betjeman, and acid house. Easy to lose yourself in, full of invention and the joy of repetitive music, I played it nonstop at the start of the year and I’ve been coming back to it ever since. Lovely packaging with the vinyl. As a companion piece the remix album was a beauty as well. It’s about time Weatherall and Fairplay took it out on the road.

Beglammered (Justin Robertson’s Deadstock 33s remix)

Another Perfect Life

I wasn’t planning back-to-back Weatherall posts but this appeared yesterday and I thought you’d be interested. A curious coupling (tripling?) of people here- Moby and Wayne Coyne (The Flaming Lips) remixed by Andrew Weatherall. House piano, female wailing, some gospel, bouncy bassline and bubbling synths, robotic vocals, an all round ’89-’90 vibe- it’ll put a smile on your face for sure. It did on mine.

>Select Shun

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I was rumaging through a box of covermount cds from music magazines when I found five that came glued to the front of Select, the late and not especially lamented Britpop bible. Select started during the glory days of Madchester but found it’s niche with the arrival of Suede, along with St Etienne, Pulp and Denim. It went on to feature Oasis, Blur and Menswear on a monthly basis but at least had the benefit of some good writers, a nice monthly feature with a suggested cover and tracklist for a mixtape and occasional forays into (usually British) dance music. The free cds (The Deep End, and then Revolutions One through to Five) had some tracks I’d forgotten about, with quite a few goodies. Here’s one of them.

Moby’s Play album sold several gazillion copies and every track on it was licensed to sell some product or other. It had it’s moments but familiarity bred contempt, round these parts anyway. Select got hold of this track and gave it away in May 2000- Moby’s Natural Blues remixed by Beastie Boy Mike D (centre in picture, as I’m sure you know). I’m pretty sure I remember reading that this isn’t an actual remix, and that Mike D and others recreated the track live instead. Which explains the busy, clattering drums, messy instruments, jumbled production and chanted vox. It’s actually very good, and sounds nothing like the rest of the Play album. More Select Shun’s to follow.

01 Natural Blues (Mike D remix).wma