A Bit Of This And That

Just watching this Happy Mondays gif loop on and on makes me smile. Better follow it up with some Happy Mondays. On Monday.

Many people think Loaded was Andrew Weatherall’s first remix but it wasn’t- Hallelujah, done with Paul Oakenfold, was the first to bear his name. I love the opening- the belted out vocal and the monks singing followed by the massive bassline and then those piano chords.

Hallelujah (Club Mix)

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Mediafire have removed Technova’s cover of Atmosphere. Bit random isn’t it?

One of my brothers, currently working for a large international sportswear corporation in Nuremberg, has got into the habit of sending me a Youtube link every Monday. The only rule seems to be that it has to be connected to Monday. One of his emails prompted me to post the wonderful cover of Blue Monday by The Times several weeks ago. Yesterday I got sent Happy Mondays performing Hallelujah on Top Of The Pops back in 1990. That episode of TOTP has grown in status, which tells us something about pre-internet, pre-satellite TV (let’s face it, no-one I knew had MTV at home). It seemed like a genuine ‘stop what you’re doing’ moment- Happy Mondays and The Stone Roses appearing on the same show, signifying a seachange in tastes and musical and clothing styles. The idea that one pop TV show could have that importance seems very odd now.

The Mondays bit is hilarious. Shaun makes no attempt to pretend he’s singing live, lipsynching with the mic held at arms length and clearly slightly worse for wear, Bez doing his saucer eyed Bez thing, and Kirsty MacColl doing backing vocals at the front of the stage. Kirsty dressed down in jeans, denim shirt and Reeboks, the Mondays dressed up. Hallelujah was a chaotic, messy song but brilliant with it, especially the guitar part. When Vini Reilly first came across the Mondays he stomped out, stopping Anthony H Wilson to tell him Horse’s guitar playing was hideous and unlistenable, but possibly the most interesting and original guitar playing he’d heard for years. Hallelujah niggles it’s way inside your head frazzling brain cells. The rest of the Madchester Rave On e.p. was equally messy and they never really sounded like that again. After Hallelujah they became more streamlined, more radio friendly, and more polished, Steve Osbourne and Paul Oakenfold’s production nous ensuring Pills ‘n’ Thrills was a hit album (and a really good album) but at the expense of the some of lunacy of their sound- six men sounding like they’re playing four different songs at the same time, while a drunk shouts and mutters brilliant nonsense over the top.

Hallelujah isn’t on the hard drive at the moment and I can’t be bothered ripping and uploading so I’m posting the Club Mix, remixed by Paul Oakenfold and our old friend Andrew Weatherall. Weatherall’s first time in a studio I think. The Club Mix starts with a high pitched vocal scream, then some lovely monastic chanting before bringing the bass drum well to the fore, some house piano and then pumping up the bassline. Again it loses some of the ramshackle charm of the original but it’s a quality remix of a band about to get big.

Hallelujah(Oakenfold & Weatherall).mp3