seedarklyxero: SDXeroEye with glow (Default)
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.

Well if you're angry at the world, this could be a good one to both kick off a summer for which you have no love and expel some rage:

Sirus - My Own Summer (Deftones)

Alt-metal rockers Deftones released their second album, Around The Fur, in October 1997. My Own Summer (Shove It) was its first single. The album was noteworthy for the way they incorporated new wave and shoegaze elements into their metal sound, a departure from their first. The track was not the most successful of their singles but despite its lack of chart-worthy sales it nonetheless resonated on alternative and rock radio (and MTV which was still playing music videos more prominently at that time.) Lead singer and lyricist Chino Moreno has said that he wrote the song in Seattle during a particularly hot summer in 1994. According to recounts, he would cover his windows and write in the dark, dreaming of an "apocalypse" that would empty the streets of people and shove the sun from the sky. The song is pretty straight forward in its description of his need.
My Own Summer also appeared on the soundtrack of The Matrix and has been covered by a small number of other artists, including Linkin Park, Atreyu, and Muse.

The label Digital World Audio gathered its stable of industrial artists to produce a covers compilation which they released in August of 2015. Covered In Darkness features covers of tracks ranging from 80's new wave, 90's alt rock, retro industrial, rap, and more. Artists on the album include C-Lekktor, Rave The Reqviem, Cygnosic, Technolorgy, and Terrolokaust (who contributed their previously released cover of Korn's Falling Away From Me.) Sirus (not to be confused with Sirius, the brightest star in our night sky,) a four member cyber-punk/terror EBM project from Australia, seemed to simply think of the album as "a crazy idea" but loved it and worked to offer fans something a little out of the ordinary from them with their cover of My Own Summer. While the band doesn't name explicitly The Prodigy as an influence, their approach to the song is remarkably evocative of tracks from The Fat Of The Land from start to finish. Their vocals distinguish them from that style however, with Josh Rombout leading with a refined yet slightly edgier take on the original while their backing vocalist Danielle McKay takes duty on a portion of the lyrics, melodically enhancing the whole with her interstitial presence.

It's a blistering revision of the source material, with every intent to shove you aside if you don't shove back!

The Cover:



The Original:



Next week:
With that out of our system, I've planned a fun entry in anticipation of a certain heroic homecoming weekend with something a little synthpop, a little trip-hop, and perhaps less dark than our usual titular fare would imply here.

Comments, suggestions, discussions, etc... welcome!
(You do NOT need a Dreamwidth account to comment, but all comments are screened for spam prevention.)

I spin next on Friday in Western Mass. Check my schedule for details. ^_^

Scream in darkness,
-Xero

Previous DisCOVERies

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)
May 21 - Sisters of Mercy - Gimme Shelter (Rolling Stones)

Directory of All Previous DisCOVERies
seedarklyxero: SDXeroEye with glow (Default)
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.

In order to accommodate last week's feature I swapped the scheduling for what would be my usual "Second Sunday Slowly" and Third Sunday Throwback entries, so that means this week we go down-tempo. "Synth Sunday Slowly" for the sake of my dopey alliterations. :P
Meld your mind to my mind, your thoughts to my thoughts, and enjoy this subtle re-vamp of an 80's synthpop favorite:

Null Device - What's On Your Mind (Pure Energy) (Information Society)

What's on Your Mind (Pure Energy) was the first single released from Information Society's self-titled 1988 debut album. The song was inspired in part by Peter Gabriel's Sledgehammer and a number of Duran Duran tracks that were popular at the time. The element that made the track stand out most however was its use of samples from the late 60's Star Trek series and the characters Mr. Spock and Doctor McCoy. The opening quote form McCoy came from the second season episode, I, Mudd. Spock's quote, which serves as subtitle to the track, came from the first season episode, Errand of Mercy. The complete line referred to a pacifist alien race of great power that reveal their nature near the episode's end, "Fascinating. Pure energy. Pure thought. Totally incorporeal. Not life as we know it at all."
InSoc did resort to using Star Trek samples in various other tracks, but none gained the popularity of what has become considered their "one-hit wonder."
There have been a few covers of the track; some of note include those by Tre Lux (Tina Root's post-Switchblade Symphony solo project,) Guggenheim & Gas-Mask, and this one by Null Device.

Null Device are a synthpop project based in Wisconsin that formed in 1994. In those 20-plus years they've covered The Ubiquitous Mr. Lovegrove by Dead Can Dance, Monkey Gone To Heaven by Pixies, and more recently, All You Fascists Bound To Lose by Woody Guthrie. They released their version of What's on Your Mind (Pure Energy) in November 2016. As self-proclaimed "InSoc nerds," the choice to cover one of their favorite InSoc songs came naturally. They say some of the inspiration for their take on the song came from when they "watched Stranger Things and thought it might be cool to re-contextualize the song as more along the lines of a darker, moodier theme inspired by that series." They describe the result as "a harrowing tale of psychic powers gained in a Cold War experiment gone wrong. Or… something."
Technically their cover is near-identical to the original in beats-per-minute but it minimizes percussion and syncopation in ways that stretch the sense of rhythm, giving it a suspenseful cinematic down-tempo effect.

The Cover:


The Original:



Next week:
Summer officially begins this week so we'll kick it off with some appropriately themed terror-EBM!

Comments, suggestions, discussions, etc... welcome!
(You do NOT need a LiveJournal account to comment, but all comments are screened for spam prevention.)

I spin next this coming weekend in the Boston area. As always the details can be found on my schedule for those who'd like to join! ^_^

Explore the darkness,
-Xero

Previous DisCOVERies

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)
May 21 - Sisters of Mercy - Gimme Shelter (Rolling Stones)
May 14 - Torso - Nijinski [Nijinsky] (Daniel Darc)

Directory of All Previous DisCOVERies
seedarklyxero: SDXeroEye with glow (Default)
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.

Today marks a special occasion for a special someone, so the cover featured is one of her favorites. As a result of the timing I'm forgoing my standard alliterative subtitles for this week and next (i.e. "Second Sunday Slowly" & Third Sunday Throwback") because that favorite falls into the "20th century" category and may not be considered entirely downtempo. Perhaps for its "shock goth" and "lurid lounge" sensibilities, I suppose I could get away with calling it a "Second Sunday Striptease" ;) :

Marilyn Manson - I Put A Spell On You (Screamin' Jay Hawkins)

Screamin' Jay Hawkins, (the "Jay" short for "Jalacy,") recorded but didn't release his original version of I Put A Spell On You in 1955. It was a lamenting blues ballad about the loss of an ex-girlfriend. It's said the producers were unsatisfied with it and, in search of something stranger, they threw a party during a recording session to change the atmosphere. Hawkins claims he doesn't actually remember recording the version that came out of that day, but somehow remembered the discovery that he "could do more destroying a song and screaming it to death." That version was released in November 1956 and was all but entirely banned from radio. The single still managed to sell over a million copies after the release of an edited version, which is said to have been tremendously popular with teenagers. The track was put on his first album, At Home with Screamin' Jay Hawkins, in 1958. When invited to perform the song live, he developed a shocking stage show to compliment the song: wearing a long cape, tusks jutting from his nostrils, coming out of a flaming coffin, a skull he would address as "Henry" mounted atop a stick, snakes, fireworks, etc...; his sensational antics were the beginning of a whole new performance style.
Many covers of the track have been released over the years by artists such as Nina Simone, Tim Curry, Annie Lennox, Nick Cave (and the Cavemen), and Bryan Ferry. Just last week, a cover of the track was featured on the sixth episode of the HBO series American Gods recorded by Brian Reitzell and Mark Lanegan (formerly of the Screaming Trees.) Most of these versions leaned into more jazz/blues/pop revisions; very few attempted to modernize the original's frantic "screamin'" style. Marilyn Manson, however, did.

Manson released Smells Like Children as an E.P. (though it had enough tracks for a full album) in October 1995 featuring his cover of I Put A Spell On You. It also featured his cover of Sweet Dreams (Are Made of This) by the Eurythmics, which was the only single released from the disc. Manson has said they wanted Spell to be a single but he thought it "was far too dark, sprawling and esoteric, even for some of our fans."
David Lynch included Manson's cover of Spell in his 1997 film, Lost Highway, as part of a scene where Patricia Arquette's character was made to strip at gunpoint for a gangster/porn producer. Manson himself got his acting debut in Lost Highway as one of the porn stars in that producer's films.
It's evident from Manson's entire persona that he was greatly inspired by Hawkins and his cover is both loyal to the original's aesthetic and also a dynamic evolution of the seminal "shock rock" waltz.

To that special lady: this one is yours... as am I, under your spell:

The Cover:



The Original:



Next week:
Third Sunday Synthpop Slowly! (Just because I'm swapping my schedule around a little doesn't mean I have to completely abandon my typical needless alliterations!) Something dark and downtempo and relatively new from an artist never previously featured here!

Comments, suggestions, discussions, etc... welcome!
(You do NOT need a Dreamwidth account to comment, but all comments are screened for spam prevention.)


I was scheduled last minute for a gig in Boston tomorrow night. My schedule has details on that and the other two events I've got on the books for later this month. Feel free to join if you can! ^_^

Explore the darkness,
-Xero

Previous DisCOVERies

Jun 04 - Siouxsie Sioux - These Boot Are Made For Walkin' (Nancy Sinatra)
May 28 - :wumpscut: - All Cried Out (Alison Moyet)
May 21 - Sisters of Mercy - Gimme Shelter (Rolling Stones)
May 14 - Torso - Nijinski [Nijinsky] (Daniel Darc)
May 07 - Faderhead - SexyBack (Justin Timberlake)

Directory of All Previous DisCOVERies
seedarklyxero: SDXeroEye with glow (Default)
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.

Two things I haven't done on this blog: featured live recorded covers or spoken with any confidence about the overall direction of DC Comics and their films. On the latter point, I think DC TV has gotten far more right than DC films have, films which I have boycotted seeing in theaters. However, in a couple of weeks I'm going to give Wonder Woman a chance and I hope I'm not disappointed by it as I have been by the previous DCEU films. There does sound certainly like there's reason to be hopeful this time.
I only mention it at all because one fun promo for the film (now at the box office) featured members of the female cast of Supergirl (again, TV being what DC does well, I'm a fan) including Lynda Carter (TV's Wonder Woman circa 1975-9) as her character, President Olivia Marsdin. The song in the promo (in fact the promo's whole theme) focuses on this super-heroine's iconic footwear and that song has been covered in concert in recent years by someone we could call fairly the "Wonder Woman of Goth":

Siouxsie Sioux - These Boot Are Made For Walkin' (Nancy Sinatra)

Nancy Sinatra's debut album, Boots celebrated its 50th anniversary last year, having been released in March 1966. Its first single, These Boots Are Made for Walkin', was released just the month before. It was written by the album's producer, Lee Hazelwood, who originally intended to record it himself (and later did.) Sinatra convinced him it required a younger, more feminine approach. In later years she said "when a guy sings it, the song sounds harsh and abusive, but it's perfect for a little girl." (She was 26 when she recorded it.) Hazelwood thought of it as not much more than "a party song" and "a joke" but in her voice it went on to be an international smash hit. In the 70's Sinatra said she regretted the success of this bit of psychedelic country go-go pop because it tied her to the "hard" image of its lyrical story and she felt that "wasn't her" because she was "as soft as they come."
Nevertheless, she inspired over 200 different covers of These Boots Are Made for Walkin' by a wide array of artists, including the likes of Boy George, Crispin Glover, David Hasselhoff, The Fixx, Kon Kan, Megadeth, Operation Ivy, Nick Cave with his first band The Boys Next Door, Former Bad Seeds members Anita Lane and Barry Adamson, and KMFDM.

Siouxsie Sioux, a post-punk amazon in stature by way of her legacy more than her size, began her solo career apart from the Banshees in 2004. Her 2009 concert DVD release of Finale: The Last Mantaray & More Show was recorded live on September 29, 2008 at KOKO in Camden Town, London. As the name suggests, it was the last show of her tour in support of her 2007 album, Mantaray. While not on any album, Sioux's adoption of Boots into her live performances may well have been inspired in part by her 2007 divorce from former Banshees band-mate, Budgie, but other than the coincidental timing, there is little on which to confirm that theory. It is also possible that she may have been sitting on the idea of doing the song from when she and Morrissey collaborated on a single in the 90's. Morrissey had sent Sioux a tape containing tracks by female singers he was considering they cover for their duet. It's said several songs by Nancy Sinatra were on that tape but it's not clear which. (They ended up picking Interlude by Timi Yuro instead.) Sioux is reportedly working on her next album so there's the chance it could include a studio recording of the cover.
Sioux, who turned 60 last weekend, and Sinatra, who turns 77 later this week, both happen to be Geminis - the priestess and the princess, sisters under the sign, immortal inspirations to generations of musicians, and all while wearing bad ass boots!:

The Cover:
(this recording may not actually be from the DVD or where it claims either, but it's the only source available for now.)



The Original:



Next week:
I'm far more a fan of Scarlet Witch and I've been, ahem, "spellbound"... in a manner of speaking. So for a special person and a special occasion I'm swapping the weeks of the usual Second Sunday Slowly and Third Sunday Throwback features this month to bring you some shock-goth from the 20th century.

Comments, suggestions, discussions, etc... welcome! (You do NOT need a Dreamwidth account to comment, but all comments are screened for spam prevention.)

I spin twice this month but the info and links to get details and RSVP will be updated on my schedule in the next day or two, for those local enough to join the fun.

Make Mine Marvel, d(^_^)b
-Xero

Previous DisCOVERies

May 28 - :wumpscut: - All Cried Out (Alison Moyet)
May 21 - Sisters of Mercy - Gimme Shelter (Rolling Stones)
May 14 - Torso - Nijinski [Nijinsky] (Daniel Darc)
May 07 - Faderhead - SexyBack (Justin Timberlake)
Apr 30 - Forevel - It's No Good (Depeche Mode)

Directory of All Previous DisCOVERies
seedarklyxero: SDXeroEye with glow (Default)
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.

Recently, a patron of one of the events I spin made a critique of me as a DJ that I never play the deep tracks of a particular industrial artist they always request. They went on to say, "I should have requested a COVER by them, THEN you'd play it," admitting they didn't really know if the artist in question had done any covers. Well... they have:

:wumpscut: - All Cried Out (Alison Moyet)

When Alison Moyet and Vince Clark disbanded their synthpop/newwave project Yazoo after only two albums, Moyet went on to a moderately successful solo career, predominantly in the UK. While she is due to release her ninth studio album in about three weeks, her first, Alf, was released in November 1984. Not to be confused with the TV series, ALF, which first aired in 1986, "Alf" was a childhood nickname of the Essex-born songstress. Her label encouraged that she embrace the musical style of acts like Bananarama & Spandau Ballet, who were popular at the time. To that end she worked with their producers Tony Swain & Steve Jolley on the album for a sound a bit more mainstream than her work on Yazoo. All Cried Out was her second single released the month before Alf. Moyet says they wrote the song in about ten minutes on their first day of working together. The single and album were hits in Europe, but didn't quite move in the U.S., hypothetically due in some measure to legal fall out between her and Yazoo's American label, Warner Brothers.

:wumpscut:, the brainchild of German electro-industrial artist Rudy Ratzinger, released his cover of All Cried Out on a bonus disc of new recordings he included on a compilation titled Preferential Tribe in 2003. The comp was effectively a 4 disc re-issue of the 1995 Preferential Legacy, the 1997 Music For A German Tribe, and other select rarities. When asked about his first cover, Ratzinger admits that his interest in the track came not from Moyet directly but first from the 2002 cover by the German pop act No Angels. He's said he's "not a die-hard fan" of No Angels and likes both versions of the track. His own version seems to have much more structurally in common with Moyet's while simultaneously being very different in its approach. He has indicated that this was "a wink" and that it would be "very funny to see the reaction" of those fans who hear it. In a somewhat poorly translated interview it appears that fans had been after him for years to do a cover and his hope was that this wouldn't be dismissed due to its "catchy melodies" that may be distinctive from his usual hard EBM style. Other songs he considered covering are Walking In The Rain by Grace Jones, Lady In Black by Uriah Heep, On The Rebound by Russ Ballard or Love To Love You Baby by Donna Summer. His cover of All Cried Out can also be found on his DJ Dwarf Three and Dwarf Craving v2 compilations.

When I considered that I would eventually spotlight Alison Moyet, I figured it would be to talk about a cover of Yazoo and certainly never expected the cover would be from :wumpscut:, but here we are: an insistent EBM dance version of one of Moyet's earliest hits with her soulful vocals replaced with the raspy growls of a mad man. Times are weird but at least this is the kind of strange I can totally get behind.

The Cover:



The Original:




Next week:
Something to make you wonder. Pretty likely by a woman. ¯\_(ツ)_/¯

Comments, suggestions, discussions, etc... welcome! (You do NOT need a Dreamwidth account to comment, but all comments are screened for spam prevention.)

Next dates I'll be spinning are in June. Details will be updated on my schedule soon. ^_^

Explore the darkness,
-Xero

Previous DisCOVERies

May 21 - Sisters of Mercy - Gimme Shelter (Rolling Stones)
May 14 - Torso - Nijinski [Nijinsky] (Daniel Darc)
May 07 - Faderhead - SexyBack (Justin Timberlake)
Apr 30 - Forevel - It's No Good (Depeche Mode)
Apr 23 - Trent Reznor & Atticus Ross w/ Karen O - Immigrant Song (Led Zeppelin)

Directory of All Previous DisCOVERies
seedarklyxero: SDXeroEye with glow (Default)
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.

It's the day before World Goth Day and this week's Third Sunday Throwback to the 20th Century focuses on an 80's goth rock cover of an iconic late 60's hard rock track that in some ways closed a particular chapter in music history:

Sisters of Mercy - Gimme Shelter (Rolling Stones)

The Rolling Stones released Let It Bleed as their tenth studio album in the U.S. in January 1969. Gimmie Shelter (later spelled "Gimme") was its first track and was praised by many critics of the time as their best song thus far. Its chorus featured backing vocals by gospel/soul singer Merry Clayton. The song was a chronicle of the times, speaking to the impact of the Vietnam War and the protests against it.
Later that year, The Rolling Stones planned to end their tour in conjunction with a free concert organized in part with Jefferson Airplane and the Grateful Dead. Held at Altamont Speedway in California, the event that was meant to be "Woodstock West" instead became known as "rock and roll's all-time worst day" due to significant amounts of violence, chaos, and several deaths. Most notable of the deaths was the wrongful slaying of an armed African-American by a member of the Hell's Angels biker gang. (The Angels were acting as ersatz "security" for the event, paid in the beer they consumed heavily while "on-duty.") A documentary of the concert, which captured the murder on film during the set by The Rolling Stones, was also titled Gimme Shelter, but their actual performance of the song is not shown.

Andrew Eldritch, front-man of the Sisters of Mercy, has indicated that the Altamont concert was influential in their decision to cover the song. In one interview he explained inarticulately, "Altamont's very important. If there's a part of history where rock music stopped for a second and we began. If there's a point where the seeds of what we do were sown, it's probably Altamont, cause it encapsulated everything wonderful at the time. The good things and the bad things, and a lot of both. It's when the trip turned sour and it's when the best music was."
The Sisters of Mercy version of Gimme Shelter was released in 1983, one of two tracks on the B-side of their Temple of Love 12-inch single. Later it was included on their 1992 compilation, Some Girls Wander By Mistake.

Where the Stones seem to intend the track as warning of the threat of continued warfare and violence in favor of the free-love attitudes prevalent in the counter-culture of the 60's, Sisters of Mercy's take is far more cynical. One of the unique elements of their cover is that they swapped the positions of the words "kiss" and "shot" in the lyrics, accentuating an idea that the threat so portentous in the original has already become our reality and even "free-love" could be a danger in itself. It's a dark and foreboding interpretation, heavy with all the gloom and gothic atmosphere that inherent to their signature style.

The Cover:



The Original:



Next week:
Recently, a patron of one of the events I spin made a critique of me as a DJ that I never play the deep tracks of a particular industrial band they always request. They went on to say, "I should have requested a COVER by them, THEN you'd play it," then admitting they didn't know if the band in question had done any covers. Well... they have. And next week you could be "crying" (possibly with laughter or in astonishment) when you find out which band and what they've done! ^_^

Comments, suggestions, discussions, etc... welcome! (You do NOT need a Dreamwidth account to comment, but all comments are screened for spam prevention.)

I'll be spinning in Western Mass this Friday again. As always you can find details and links on my schedule. ^_^

Explore the darkness,
-Xero

Previous DisCOVERies

May 14 - Torso - Nijinski [Nijinsky] (Daniel Darc)
May 07 - Faderhead - SexyBack (Justin Timberlake)
Apr 30 - Forevel - It's No Good (Depeche Mode)
Apr 23 - Trent Reznor & Atticus Ross w/ Karen O - Immigrant Song (Led Zeppelin)
Apr 16 - Type O Negative - Cinnamon Girl (Neil Young w/ Crazy Horse)
Apr 09 - PreCog - Pepper (Butthole Surfers)

Directory of All Previous DisCOVERies
seedarklyxero: SDXeroEye with glow (Default)
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.

Here in the States, we who are in a fight for the very "notion of our nation" applaud the French election and their resistance against Russian influence. We are simultaneously horrified by reports of Russia's inhumanly homophobic crimes against its people. Russia's escalating aggression toward its LGBT communities is among reasons why this very blog was forced to move from LiveJournal (where the Terms of Service of the site based in Russia became unwelcoming to portions of my content) here to Dreamwidth. As a point of subversive irony, this week, our Second Sunday Slowly feature highlights a downtempo darkwave cover of a French artist who was influenced by the works of a Russian dancer noted for his controversial choreography and sexuality:

Torso - Nijinski [Nijinsky] (Daniel Darc)
(It's possible some details found here may have been translated imprecisely from their French and Russian sources, but I've done what I could to be as accurate as possible.)

Daniel Darc, formerly of the New Romantic era French new-wave band Taxi Girl, released his second solo album in 1994. Nijinsky was the title track, inspired by a book about Russian ballet dancer, Vaslav Nijinsky. According to one account, Darc was just out of jail and in a subway where he'd picked up the book. While reading it, someone pointed out to him his nose was bleeding. It was as he saw his blood mixed with the pages that he decided he would devote this album to the dancer.
Nijinsky was regarded as the preeminent male dancer of the early 20th century. He became a founding member of the Ballets Russes in 1909, with which he had performed Scheherazade (which featured a multi-racial orgy) and had choreographed L'après-midi d'un faune (depicting erotic mythological creatures masturbating). Nijinsky, who was homosexual, found himself fired from the company shortly after his marriage to the daughter of a Hungarian politician. When the first World War began his Russian citizenship rendered him an enemy of Hungary and he was placed under house arrest until a prisoner exchange allowed him to come to the U.S.. He performed and toured again for a time but due to injury and stress, his skill deteriorated. His later years were plagued by mental illness and asylum stays. His diaries were published, though his wife had altered the original editions to exclude many details of his homosexuality and any unflattering remarks about her. The Diary of Vaslav Nijinsky was fully restored in 1999.
It is not entirely clear what book had inspired Darc but his thus-inspired album was received favorably. It was, however, considered an unfortunate "commercial failure," presumably because of generally low sales due to poor marketing.

But that isn't to say it touched no one.

According to Vincent Fallacara of Strasbourg, at the time lead singer of A Sordid Poppy, he was suffering another night of insomnia when he was struck by the song as it aired on TV sometime in 1994 or 1995. He felt as if he'd "just found an old friend who had been long lost." Years later after he and his brother Marco formed their French dark-wave/new wave project Torso, they recorded a cover of Nijinsky. It was the first track on their self-titled E.P. in 2004 which they appear to have only made available for download from their website (no longer functional.) Their cover went on to be included on a 15-track 2005 tribute to Daniel Darc & Taxi Girl titled, Quelqu'un Comme Nous.

When Daniel Darc died in February 2013, Unknown Pleasures Records collaborated with various French artists to produce the 17-track Tribute To Daniel Darc & Taxi Girl which was released in November that year. Torso's cover was included on the compilation, along with another more uptempo version of the track by Follow Me Not.

Torso, inspired additionally by The Cure, Joy Division, and Massive Attack, drop the tempo of Darc's generally poppy new wave rock track, which itself has more in common with Echo & the Bunnyman or The Church. While both adopt an almost western style riff, Torso's approach is more of a dark bassy saunter in stark contrast to Darc's more lively guitar gait. Torso also perform the vocals in a sort of spoken/sung echo or canon. At near twice the duration of the original, Torso have definitely expressed something unique and loving about their "old long lost friend."

The Cover:



The Original:



Next week:
Where this entry was about inspiration derived from a "mother" of sorts, the next will be about a track from the 60's covered in the 80's by some goth rock "sisters" for our Third Sunday Throwback to the 20th century.

Comments, suggestions, discussions, etc... welcome! (You do NOT need a Dreamwidth account to comment, but all comments are screened for spam prevention.)

I'll spin next in West Mass on the last Friday of May. Check my schedule for details if you'd like to join. ^_^

Explore the darkness,
-Xero

Previous DisCOVERies

May 07 - Faderhead - SexyBack (Justin Timberlake)
Apr 30 - Forevel - It's No Good (Depeche Mode)
Apr 23 - Trent Reznor & Atticus Ross w/ Karen O - Immigrant Song (Led Zeppelin)
Apr 16 - Type O Negative - Cinnamon Girl (Neil Young w/ Crazy Horse)
Apr 09 - PreCog - Pepper (Butthole Surfers)

Directory of All Previous DisCOVERies
seedarklyxero: SDXeroEye with glow (Default)
Welcome to SeeDarkly Sunday DisCOVERies: a weekly exploration of goth, industrial, & dark alternative cover songs!
Where they came from, who did them originally, and other strange trivia!

It's the Second Anniversary of DisCOVERies and if after 105 dark covers you think there's not much left to offer, you'll be surprised!
On the very first entry I explained a few of the reasons why the blog exists. Last year, on the one year anniversary, I revealed a few of the parameters I use to select tracks and prevent repetition. I intend to continue to operate under those guidelines, though I may decide to introduce a new cover of a track featured previously sometime later this year... we'll see.

One interesting phenomenon I've encountered over these past two years has been the occasional prejudice by some readers seemingly resistant to acknowledge the idea that the goth/industrial music they love may occasionally have its roots in contemporary mainstream popular music. Goth/industrial music didn't spring fully formed from the void, as darkly romantic as that notion may be. So when I explore the history of these tracks, I am not apologetic. Whether the song was performed originally by artists like Madonna, Michael Jackson or George Michael, it's relevant to the history and says something about the artists who chose to cover them. Love or hate pop music as anyone will, the origins of the covers can not be denied. Moreover, they shouldn't be. Creative inspiration, whether it be serious, in fun, or some combination of those motivations, comes from a variety of sources and sometimes those sources are unexpected, perhaps even guilty pleasures. So as I continue presenting these covers, I encourage readers to keep an open mind and consider the broader evolution of this music we call "dark"...

Speaking of "guilty pleasures," this week's entry is a great example of an artist inspired by such pop to recreate it in his own industrial futurepop image, and he seems to have done it all for the sake of a fan:

Faderhead - SexyBack (Justin Timberlake)

SexyBack was the first successful number one hit of Justin Timberlake's post-NSYNC solo career, released in July 2006. It was the debut single from his second album, FutureSex/LoveSounds, released two months later. Timberlake has allegedly described his approach to this EDM track as an attempt to create a song like James Brown's Sex Machine but through the rock sensibilities of artists like David Bowie or David Byrne while simultaneously incorporating new wave synth elements found in the music of acts like Tears for Fears or Human League.
The track was panned by a significant amount of music journalists who berated it as "the weakest song" of the album, "annoyingly dumb," "laughable," "irritating," etc... Despite such criticisms the single went multi-platinum in the U.S. and several other countries, and earned Timberlake a number of awards, including a Grammy for Best Dance Recording.

Faderhead, the stage name of Sami Mark Yahya, is an electronic musician/producer from Hamburg, Germany. According to accounts reviewed on social media, Faderhead had often considered covering SexyBack, but it wasn't until an exchange with a fan on Twitter that he apparently found motivation. In fact, on June 1, 2010, roughly three and a half hours after a few short tweets with the social media blogger known as "Miss Destructo," he had completed recording the cover and made it available as a free download for the subscribers of his newsletter. If you listen close you'll even hear him give Miss Destructo a shout-out half way through his version of the song.

Faderhead has done at least two other covers, (White Wedding by Billy Idol & White Room by Cream,) also as exclusive free downloads for the public.
Faderhead's take on SexyBack leans into the track's self-referential egotism. He performs all the lyrics, unlike the original which features guest vocalist and co-producer Timbaland, and seems to be making fun of the song and himself in the process.

The Cover:
(player is an unofficial source & starts @ :22 | will be replaced once [site community profile] dw_maintenance white-lists the ReverbNation embedded player. D/L available here )


The Original:



Next week:
Second Sunday Slowly! A downtempo track on the gothier/darkwave side of the aisle!

Comments, suggestions, discussions, etc... welcome! (You do NOT need a DreamWidth account to comment, but all comments are screened for spam prevention.)

I've currently one more gig for the month of May. Check my schedule for details. ^_^

Explore the darkness,
-Xero

Previous DisCOVERies

Apr 30 - Forevel - It's No Good (Depeche Mode)
Apr 23 - Trent Reznor & Atticus Ross w/ Karen O - Immigrant Song (Led Zeppelin)
Apr 16 - Type O Negative - Cinnamon Girl (Neil Young w/ Crazy Horse)
Apr 09 - PreCog - Pepper (Butthole Surfers)
Apr 02 - Aesthetic Perfection - She Drives Me Crazy (Fine Young Cannibals)

Directory of All Previous DisCOVERies
seedarklyxero: SDXeroEye with glow (Default)
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.

Once again it's time for Fifth Sunday A La Mode, when we focus on a cover of Depeche Mode. This down-tempo cover of one of their hits from the late 90's comes from a married couple out of Poland whose project was unfortunately short-lived.:

Forevel - It's No Good (Depeche Mode)

Depeche Mode released It's No Good, their 32nd European single, in late March 1997, two weeks in advance of its US release and the worldwide release of their ninth studio album, Ultra. The album was their first after the departure of Alan Wilder which, along with Dave Gahan's life threatening drug overdose, many thought heralded the end of the band's career. Gahan managed to clean himself up and elements of that struggle are heard throughout the album. On tour Gahan would skip attending after-parties and backstage meet-and-greets in order to avoid the possibility of even being offered drugs. (Fletcher and Gore confirmed this when I met them backstage after one such show in November 1998.)

Forevel was a dark trip hop project from Ewelina Zańczak-Sztaba and Łukasz Sztaba, a Polish couple married for over a decade, influenced by acts like Massive Attack, How to Destroy Angels, Sigur Ross, and, of course, Depeche Mode. Longtime studio musicians themselves, their cover of It's No Good marked their debut as their own act, which came after waiting three months for Depeche Mode to approve the recording (although as previously noted here, there was likely no chance Gore would turn them down.) They released their version online in April 2013 and their video for the single a month later. They were expected to follow up with a full length album featuring the cover along with ten original tracks. However, apart from another video for a single titled, Otworz oczy (Open Your Eyes), no further music has surfaced from the couple and most of their online presence has evaporated. Last October there was indication from a Polish tabloid source that they had split up due to the husband's alleged infidelity. Meanwhile, Łukasz Sztaba seems to be back at work in at his music production company with his brother, Adam.
It's a bit of a disappointment if the project has met its end in such a way. Especially so considering the seductive and rhythmically bewitching artistry of this rendition showed such potential for their original compositions. They have said their sound could be compared to "the silence before the storm, the dense air, the drowsiness." Their version of It's No Good builds anticipation melodically with gossamer minimalism leading to the first chorus when its trip hop percussion begins. From there it continues that gradual build with those blended elements, measure by measure, until its final instrumental closure. Ewelina's vocals are alluring and remarkably distinct in contrast to the original.

The song may say "you can't turn back the tide" but with the very album on which it is included, Gahan illustrated how possible it is to recover from adversity, so perhaps this isn't the last we'll see of Forevel.

The Cover:



The Original:



Next week:
It's gonna be May and the Second Anniversary edition of SDSD features a sexy EBM/futurepop cover quite relevant to that very meme!

Comments, suggestions, discussions, etc... welcome!
(You do NOT need a DreamWidth account to comment, but all comments are screened for spam prevention.)

I spin next in the Boston area this Friday. If you're in the vicinity and care to join me, get the details from my schedule and RSVP if we'll see you there! ^_^

Explore the darkness,
-Xero

Previous DisCOVERies
Apr 23 - Trent Reznor & Atticus Ross w/ Karen O - Immigrant Song (Led Zeppelin)
Apr 16 - Type O Negative - Cinnamon Girl (Neil Young w/ Crazy Horse)
Apr 09 - PreCog - Pepper (Butthole Surfers)
Apr 02 - Aesthetic Perfection - She Drives Me Crazy (Fine Young Cannibals)
Mar 26 - nTTx - Don't Stop 'Til You Get Enough (Michael Jackson)

Directory of All Previous DisCOVERies
seedarklyxero: SDXeroEye with glow (Default)
Welcome to SeeDarkly Sunday DisCOVERies:
It's a weekly exploration of goth, industrial, & dark alternative cover songs!
Where they came from, who did them originally, and other strange facts!
It has a new home here on DreamWidth where all previous entries have been imported, corrected, and updated.
(Notice a broken link anywhere? Please let us know.)
First time here? Click here for details from first entry.

So... that Thor: Ragnarok trailer, right?! Easily made that the single superhero movie for which I'm most excited this year (which says something considering I loved the first Guardians WAY more than the previous Thor films!) And while I may feel essentially the same as Jimmy Urine (of Mindless Self Indulgence, who has a role IN Guardians of the Galaxy V2) when it comes to the band whose music is on the Thor trailer, without a doubt that song was used to great effect for all the imagery it invokes. That isn't, however, the first time it's been used as part of soundtrack, in its original or covered form:

Trent Reznor & Atticus Ross w/ Karen O - Immigrant Song (Led Zeppelin)

Led Zeppelin kicked off a six-stop European tour on June 22, 1970, the first of their shows in Reykjavík, Iceland. Immediately inspired by the visit they wrote a track paralleling their experience to tales of Norse mythology, Viking voyages, and conquest. They debuted Immigrant Song in Bath on the second stop of the tour, just six days after the first. Immigrant Song was then included on their next studio album, Led Zeppelin III released in October that year, followed by its single release a month later.
The song has been covered at least four dozen times since; some of those covers by Queen, Cyndi Lauper, Incubus, Informatik and Red Flag. It's also been included on a variety of TV shows, documentaries, and films. Two noteworthy films featuring the track include the 2003 comedy School Of Rock and the 1998 sci-fi action Soldier (starring Kurt Russel who plays Ego in GotG-V2)

Filmmaker David Fincher, having previously worked with Trent Reznor (of Nine Inch Nails) and Atticus Ross on the soundtrack for The Social Network, called on them again to do the soundtrack for his American remake of the film adaptation of The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo. The film was based on the novel by Stieg Larsson, originally titled Män som hatar kvinnor (English translation: Men Who Hate Women.)
Their soundtrack is primarily instrumental with the exception of the cover of Bryan Ferry's Is Your Love Strong Enough? (by the Reznor/Ross side project How To Destroy Angels) and the cover of Immigrant Song, done in collaboration with Karen O of the Yeah Yeah Yeahs.
In several interviews Reznor admits that the idea of an "aggressive version" of the track with Karen O "wailing over it" was Fincher's. He didn't know why at first but came to understand how Fincher intended to juxtapose the song's lyrics against the character of Lisbeth to add some meaning in the opening of the film. Reznor, who likes Zeppelin, Karen O, and the song, was concerned he would open himself "up for criticism and failure" and wasn't sure what he could do "to give it justice." Trusting in Fincher's vision, he said they "wound up with something that I think works really well in a situation that wouldn't have been where my instinct would have led."

Karen O claimed complete ignorance of Led Zeppelin before being asked to do the vocals. She has been quoted as saying that the reason she "could muster up whatever it took to actually cover" the song was because she "didn’t have any reverence for the track as I didn’t really know it." She's also said she poured a lot of her own personal torment into the recording, which she found to be "primal" and "liberating."

"Primal" certainly describes this rendition with its appropriately thunderous industrial interpretations on the original instrumentation. Ride on to Valhalla with this dragon-spawned ragnarok'n'roll!:

The Cover:



The Original:



Another interesting bit of trivia tying the films together: Swedish actor Stellan Skarsgård played Martin Vanger in this version of The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo and, though he is not slated to appear in Ragnarok, he played Erik Selvig in the previous Thor, Thor: The Dark World and both Avengers films.

Next week:
Marks the entry before SeeDarkly Sunday DisCOVERies celebrates its Two Year Anniversary with another Fifth Sunday A La Mode; this time a downtempo dark triphop cover of Depeche Mode out of Poland and it's SO good!

Comments, suggestions, discussions, etc... welcome! (You do NOT need a Dreamwidth account to comment, but all comments are screened for spam prevention.)

At the time of this posting I'll be spinning next on Friday in Western Mass. If you can, join me! Details can be found on my schedule along with whatever's next. ^_^

Explore the darkness,
-Xero

Previous DisCOVERies

Apr 16- Type O Negative - Cinnamon Girl (Neil Young w/ Crazy Horse)
Apr 09 - PreCog - Pepper (Butthole Surfers)
Apr 02 - Aesthetic Perfection - She Drives Me Crazy (Fine Young Cannibals)
Mar 26 - nTTx - Don't Stop 'Til You Get Enough (Michael Jackson)
Mar 19 - The Prodigy - Fuel My Fire (L7)

Directory of All Previous DisCOVERies