Posts Tagged ‘Chemical Brothers’

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Heavy Rotation V. 58: The Chemical Connection Edition

January 16, 2011

Featuring The Loops of Fury, the Chemical Brothers, Kasabian, Renegade Soundwave, the Prodigy and Spiritualized. If you’d like a track removed, contact me at 2timegrime@gmail.com.

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Learn something new everyday. Giles Turnbill did.

“November 6 – 6. When your son asks “What is electricity?” it’s wise to stop and think for a moment—or consult an encyclopedia—before launching into an answer that may grind to an unfortunate and, for the questioner, unsatisfying halt.”

Literal New Yorker Cartoon Captions. Misses about as often as it hits, but this one is a keeper. As is this one.

Something more for RF and SM to fight about: FuckYeahMenswear.

Kasabian – Underdog (Loops of Fury Refix).mp3

The actual second coming of the Stone Roses (unlike the Second Coming of the Stone Roses, which was underwhelming, to say the least), Kasabian whip up some mighty fine swaggering dance rock. Concerned that there was perhaps too much “rock” and not enough “dance” in this mixture, Loops of Fury take over on production and crank this up into a bigger, beatier frenzy, triggering looping vocal samples and house-quaking bass in a very close approximation of the Chemical Brothers, from whom they have borrowed their name.

Chemical Brothers – Loops of Fury.mp3

Released very early on in the ChemBros’ career while they were still d/b/a the Dust Brothers, a name that they had, in turn, borrowed from an American production duo who at that point were most famous for producing the Beastie Boys’ classic second album, Paul’s Boutique.

Flattering tribute or not, the original Dust Brothers told the upstarts, “Thanks and all, but we’d like to keep the name,” perhaps fearing these Brits would surpass them, what with Paul’s Boutique not exactly flying off the shelves.

So Tom and Ed relented, becoming the world famous Chemical Brothers, issuing the wryly titled Exit Planet Dust as their debut. The Dust Brothers went on to produce albums for Beck, Santana and craft the Fight Club soundtrack. Sometimes everybody wins.

The Prodigy – Voodoo People (Chemical Brothers Remix).mp3

While we’re still in the general vicinity, let’s discuss the Chemical Brothers’ godawesome remixing skills. This particular remix takes hold of The Prodigy’s hyperkinetic breakbeats, which had more in common with proto-drum n bass than the Chemical Brothers’ own mixture of hip hop breaks and rock attitude, and morph it into a shitstorm of city-levelling bass and beautifully triggered vocal samples.

Listen to that bass. Turn it up enough and you’re no longer hearing it. At top volume it becomes an omniscient force, a godlike pulse that consumes the air around it.

The Chemical Brothers know bass.

Renegade Soundwave – Thunder.mp3

So does Renegade Soundwave. One of the pioneers of acid house/breakbeats, Renegade Soundwave entered the scene in late 80s along with Meat Beat Manifesto, taking their musical cues from industrial music and post-punk acts like Killing Joke and converting them for the dance floor.

The Chemical Brothers have specifically cited this track as an influence, stating they wanted their bass to sound as badass as this does. As evidenced above, they nailed it.

Spiritualized – I Think I’m in Love (Chemical Brothers Remix).mp3

I’ll leave you with this: proof that the Brothers can also do unimaginably pretty when not targeting your central nervous system with low-level sub-bass carpet bombing.

-CLT

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Top 50 Tracks of 2010: Chemical Brothers – K+D+B

November 17, 2010

46. Chemical Brothers – K+D+B.

46. Chemical Brothers – K+D+B.mp3

In which the Chemical Brothers get back to the business of making music they like, rather than making music they think others will like, resulting in their best album since 1999’s Surrender. A decade-long run of pop chart chasing almost made me give this one a pass, figuring I was in for more salmon dancing and other such bland electronica.

But the Brothers redeem themselves with drums, drums and more drums, building to a percussive dreampop climax, reaching the heights of the sole lyrical interjection: “Higher.”

Get your Chemicals here.

The rest of the Top 50.

-CLT

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Heavy Rotation 48

June 13, 2010

No theme this week, which should equal fewer words and more time for you to surf around the net while enjoying the finest in music via the Heavy Rotation.

[Another brief note: all tracks featured in the Heavy Rotation can be downloaded by right-clicking on the song title and choosing “Save As…” Just throwing that out there in case anyone was wondering.]

Browse here (all links will open in a new window, per Scott’s instructions):

http://www.hammacher.com/Product/78609?promo=Home&catid=0  (via Dubious Quality)

http://thinkstank.tumblr.com/post/664617570/nine-inch-niles-the-seattleward-spiral  (and he’s got a million more great ideas… check out the whole Thinkstank site)

http://shitmykidsruined.tumblr.com/ 

Previous volumes here, mostly sans links:
The Heavy Rotation Archives

Rraaiillss – SPF85.mp3
First there was the Jesus and Mary Chain. And they were awesome. And as most bands do, they started strong and faded but were divisive enough to be considered influential, what with all their feedback and darkened outlook. But for a long time, bands called them an influence but gave no musical reason for us to believe them.

Suddenly, twenty + years after their feedback-drenched debut, bands all over the place are sound like JAMC meant more to them than just something to say to music journos. A Place to Bury Strangers, the Young Boys, Nikoo, etc. And now, the cat-on-the-keyboard-named Rraaiills.

However, Rraaiillss follows the less noisy path, with one-man band Adam Anderson staking a claim somewhere in the middle of Darklands, the milder sophomore album by the Scottish noise boys. It’s all understated distortion, hummable melodies and a bleak-as-the-great-Scottish-outdoors outlook. (You can pick up his entire 4-track ep for FREE here: http://rraaiillss.bandcamp.com/ )

The Jesus and Mary Chain – Nine Million Rainy Days.mp3
This one is for comparison. From the second album by the Jesus and Mary Chain, in which they mostly turned their back on walls of feedback, but didn’t quite do an entire 180 and start looking their audience in the eye. An atmospheric broken hymn to a collapsing relationship and the attendant exposed nerve endings of obsession.

Liars – Cycle Time.mp3
Unfolds like a bar fight. The first half is the buildup, instigated by the wrong thing said or the stare that goes on a beat too long. The chips fall off the shoulders at 1:06, leading to a chorus that hits like a swung bottle. It’s over as quickly as it starts, leaving behind nothing but bruises, blood and the echo of footsteps escaping the scene before the cops show up. Check out more from the Liars here: http://www.myspace.com/liarsliarsliars

 

autoKratz – Kick (BANKSY Mix).mp3
Banging away at your psyche with brooding efficiency, autoKratz’ dark tech/prog house banger (like they made in the good old days) features some icy, industrial-esque vocal distortion and an assortment of haunting electronic hums and ping-ponging scary noises.

The 4/4 thump and bass thrum move the track along with enough singlemindedness to get asses on the floor, where it proceeds to scare the bejeezus out of anyone chemically-addled enough to get too close to the bassbins. A lot like Front Line Assembly’s best work.

Chemical Brothers – K+D+B.mp3
Los Hermanos Chemical are back! Thank god. And I don’t just mean they’ve released a new album. No, they’ve done plenty of that recently with middling effectiveness and an annoying reliance on guest stars to aid in their quest to abandon their fanbase and acquire the kind of listeners who have shown a distinct tendency to pick Lady Gaga or whatnot instead.

No. Not just another album.

They. Are. Back.

Further is easily their best album since 1999’s Surrender, which is fitting because this album sounds a whole lot like that one. And I couldn’t be happier. It’s melodic. It’s thumping. It’s the underground we all wanted to be a part of. It’s the 4am set that turns to bliss as the sun rises over 20,000 dancers in a field, celebrating a primal togetherness that can only be explained by hamfisted writing and botched metaphors.

K+D+B is all that in one 5-1/2 minute track. Starting with some drums right out of Fleetwood Mac’s Tusk, the ChemBros kick up the pace, relying on not much else but the syncopated beats. Around a minute in, the keyboards and samples kick in, bringing the track into the daylight and warming everything around it. 1:43: something that could be called an electro-bagpipe kicks in. A buzzing burst of treble noise, but calling it “noise” does it a disservice. It adds rather than distracts.

Builds and builds and builds and why the fuck not? The sampled singing keeps telling us “higher.” I’m only making things worse by attempting to express the pure euphoria and enchantment that two guys with a room full of switches are capable of evoking. Just listen.

-CLT

[Want a track removed? Think I used the words “electro” or “fuck” too much? Just say so (but nicely): 2timegrime@gmail.com.]
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Heavy Rotation Vol. 13

September 6, 2009

Suggested new titles:
Heavy D and the Rotation
Heavy’s 5-Man Rotation
He Ain’t Heavy, He’s My Rotation
Rotations Are Heavy
(apologies to L7)
CLT’s Tastemakery & General Condescension

Previous volumes available in the Heavy Rotation Archive (for the low, low price of a mouse-click).

chembros

Chemical Brothers – Private Psychedelic Reel
Last track off their masterpiece Dig Your Own Hole. A monumental build leads to all hell breaking loose and some masterful tweaking of builds and drops all the way thru. Named after the Beatle’s rumored “music to take drugs to” collection. The Brothers routinely close their shows with this headcrusher, which is truly best experienced live.

Two vids (album version and live video):

 

deathinvegas

Death in Vegas – Aisha (featuring Iggy Pop)
Iggy joins the Richard Fearless production collective (sans peanut butter) to deliver some very dark lyrics about serial killers over the greatest cycled riff since metal lost all of its hair. Nothing subtle about this. Just great rocking fun, all huge riffs, killer drums and menacing vocals. Rock like rock should be.

Embedding disabled by fuckmook label executives. Please click thru.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=cOsonaQMy-E

 

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Fischerspooner – The 15th
Electro-weirdos Fischerspooner take on a Wire track with some unexpectedly amazing results. Begone angular guitars! Make way for some perfectly lovely synth pads and vocal reverb. Beautifully done. Wouldn’t look out of place soundtracking some sort of heartsick montage in an ’80s teen romance flick or being belted out by everybody and their mother in Paul Thomas Anderson’s latest (if that latest is Magnolia… it would seem terribly out of place in There Will Be Blood).

 

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Hardknox – Fire Like This
You know this song. You just think you don’t. Once you click play, it’ll all come rushing back. Another breakbeat/big beat group from back in the early ’00s, when heady young record execs thought techno would take over the US. Needless to say, MCR, Nickelback, Limp Bizkit, Britney Spears, Black Eyed Peas, etc. Still, an enjoyable track that asks nothing more than to get your ass on up out of that chair, whether to bust a move or bust some heads.

 

bannerkod

Kitchens of Distinction – Quick as Rainbows
Those of you who grew up like I did (white, suburban, mid-30’s) will immediately be transported back to the MTV of yore, whose Sunday nights were essential viewing, what with 120 (fucking) Minutes playing the music you actually listened to. Chiming guitars, airy vocals, soaring synthwork. All this added up to college/alternative rock that actually was still the “alternative.” A gorgeous heartbreak of a song.

All files in one easy-to-abuse zip file: Heavy Rotation Vol. 13 (link opens in new window).

-CLT

[All music posted on Fancy Plans… is kick ass and too awesome to be contained. All music is also posted temporarily and, due to it’s high level of ass-kicking, should not be distributed without a prescription and care should be taken while operating heavy equipment or dancing around the living room (clothing optional, but do remember that the blinds are open/kids are still awake).
Should you wish to have your brilliant artistic statement forced back into confinement, please email me at 2timegrime@gmail.com. Feel free to leave a comment, as that will probably be noticed sooner.
By all means, if you like what you hear (and you will), please support the totally rocking artist(s) by purchasing some music or heading out to see them live.]