2 July 2017

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Welcome to SeeDarkly Sunday DisCOVERies:
a weekly exploration of goth, industrial, & dark alternative cover songs!
First time here? Click here for details from first entry.

I'll admit what I'm about to present is on the out-most fringe of anything goth, industrial, or even dark. It's downright upbeat, fun, and I am barely able to justify it on the basis of its sound. However, even KMFDM once did an entire soundtrack to a video game of the titular wall-crawling webhead, so I feel certain many in the darker subcultures can appreciate this tune spun from IDM/trip hop as frankly one of the (ahem) "superior" covers of the theme. So face front, true believers! Next weekend may bring us a heroic homecoming, but this one brings you the theme that introduced the mighty marvel to motion media!

Urgess - Spider-Man Theme (Paul Francis Webster and Robert "Bob" Harris)

Spider-Man, the first ever animation series to feature the character, debuted on the ABC network's Saturday morning cartoon line-up on September 9, 1967. It was preceded by a single season of The Marvel Super Heroes cartoons that featured Captain America, Thor, Iron Man, Hulk, and Submariner, with no appearance of Spider-Man in any episode. Co-creator Stan Lee has said he originally hadn't thought about animating Spider-Man until the Grantray-Lawrence Animation producers came to him with the idea because they were actual fans of the character. "Smiling Stan Lee" & "Jazzy Johnny Romita" were credited as the show's story and art consultants. The theme for the series was developed and recorded by lyricist Paul Francis Webster and composer Robert "Bob" Harris who used an uncredited array of twelve vocalists on the track from the Billy Van Singers and Laurie Bower Singers.
After the Spider-Man cartoon debuted, Marvel celebrated achieving status as the top-selling comic publisher at that time, no doubt in part due to the show's reach to new readers. The cartoon series changed production hands to Krantz Films after the first season. Its original run lasted for a total of three seasons and spent many years after in syndication. There have been eight subsequent Spider-Man cartoons (with another series scheduled to air sometime this summer) and none have used any version of the original theme, though the theme performed by Joe Perry of Aerosmith for the 1994 Spider-Man series seemed to take some inspiration from the original.
The theme was used again in all three of Sam Raimi's Spider-Man films: covered by a couple of street musicians, Michael Bublé, and a marching band, but only in its original form for the credits in the first of the trilogy. The theme also appears as Peter Parker's ringtone in the second of the two recent "Amazing" films. Michael Giacchino, composer for the soundtrack of the upcoming Spider-Man: Homecoming film (opening next weekend), has revealed on twitter that his score will include an orchestral version of the theme as well.
Apart from its use in the film and television media, the theme has also been covered by punk-rockers The Ramones and the campy lounge singer Richard Cheese.

Ugress is the cinematic-electro brainchild of Norwegian musician, Gisle Martens Meyer. Meyer released his first full-length studio album after making a name for himself as a touring concert performer. Resound, which features his instrumental cover of Spider-Man as its first track, was released on September 9, 2002, exactly 35 years after the cartoon first aired! It seems that this version may have been taken entirely or in part from live performances and cleaned up in post-production. Given the timing, it's possible Meyer had been performing the theme live following the 2002 summer release of the Spider-Man film and after significant crowd response decided it should be included on the album, but there's really nothing to confirm that theory. Beginning with a sample of the orchestral fanfare that accompanied the original show's title, Meyer's version sounds like an eclectic assemblage of world instruments with roots in eastern musicality and trip-hop style. It captures the heart of the theme while giving it an energetic dance rhythm designed to make you move. Because if Spidey has taught us anything, it's that action is its own reward.

The Cover:

The Original:

Next week:
Second Sunday Slowly returns to its regularly scheduled time slot. Remember how the feature last week expressed a desire to shove the sun from the sky? The upcoming downtempo darkwave cover also revolves around seeing less of the sun.

Comments, suggestions, discussions, etc... welcome!
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Summer heat is putting half my gigs on hiatus so my next is at the end of this month. When details are available, you can find them on my schedule. ^_^

Explore the darkness,

Previous DisCOVERies

Jun 25 - Sirus - My Own Summer (Deftones)
Jun 18 - Null Device - What's On Your Mind (Pure Energy) (Information Society)
Jun 11 - Marilyn Manson - I Put A Spell On You (Screamin' Jay Hawkins)
Jun 04 - Siouxsie Sioux - These Boot Are Made For Walkin' (Nancy Sinatra)
May 28 - :wumpscut: - All Cried Out (Alison Moyet)

Directory of All Previous DisCOVERies


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DJ Xero, Operative of SeeDarkly™

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