Mash ups – 1980

‘Mash ups’ or dubbing different souonds onto existing film footage have become all the rage since Youtube became popular.

But they’re not new, really.

This was done by Not the Nine O’Clock News, circa 1980, with a speech by Northern Ireland protestant leader Ian Paisley, the sounds of Northern Irish band Thin Lizzy, and – for reasons which are not clear – a bit of footage from Rod Stewart’s band of the time.

Waters that fail

Lamentations. Nothing to do with the unemployment data released this morning, just some of the most achingly spiritual music ever composed.

Inspired by the Book of Lamentations, traditionally attributed to the prophet Jeremiah. At one point Jeremiah shakes his fist at God and asks him – in biblical language, of course – just what God thinks He’s playing at.

This is a kind of Old Time Religion I think we should have more of.

NZ book month 04 – Selected Poems, Allen Curnow

Fourth, entry, day eight of the NZ Book Month challenge….will catch up by the weekend.

Not a massive Curnow fan, and not a fan of poetry which is self-conciously about ‘nationhood’ or anything like that.
But I love ‘The Unhistoric Story’, one of Curnow’s early poems. The continued refrain ‘something different, something nobody counted on’ does, it seems to me, say something about New Zealand.
Here’s the first and last stanzas (I love the last stanza):

Whaling for continents coveted deep in the south

The Dutchman envied the unknown, drew bold

Imagers of market-place, populous river mouth

The land of Beach ignorant of the value of gold:

Morning in Murderers Bay

Blood drifted away.

It was something different, something

Nobody counted on.

After all re-ordering of old elements

Time trips up all but the humblest of heart

Stumbling after the fire, not in the smoke of events;

For many are called, but many are left at the start.

And whatever islands may be

Under or over the sea

It is something different, something

Nobody counted on.

Another Girl another planet

It’s a flying fish, this song. Or an acrobatic dolphin. The build up is like something large and fast coming to the surface of the ocean: then it bursts through in an incredible rush of speed and exhilaration.

The Only Ones was the band, and they were the one-liest of One Hit Wonders. This mob burst on the charts, came and went in the sort of rush the song captures, sometime back when I was in the fifth or sixth form (I don’t remember exactly). 

I don’t think they did anything else to excite record buyers, but this song puts them right up there as turning out one of the best singles of all time.

OK, maybe I’m getting carried away there. But only a bit.

It also has to be in the running for Best Guitar Solo Ever, but the rhythm guitar, base and drums provide the landing strip for the solo to take off from.

Because that’s what it does: it soars, this song. And the soaring is all from the playing, ‘cos the vocalist sounds bored, almost catatonic.

Maybe because he’s just trying too hard to be cool singing a song about the exuberance, the sheer giddy goofiness of adolescent love.