Thursday, December 16, 2004

Julian Cope's Dancing Heads

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Julian Cope released what I regard as his best solo album in 1991. Peggy Suicide was a sprawling, 18 song cycle about the Earth and the destruction of the environment and love and the anti Poll tax movement. The record got played a lot back in those days - there's nobody who does stuff like Julian, and I was thrilled with the music he created. It came out in the middle of the heady days of "indie dance", when Brit rock bands were putting out cool remixes of their tunes by the likes of Andrew Weatherall and Paul Oakenfold. I was in love with all of that music, and when I saw an EP of actual remixes for Cope's tunes I was very enthused. He had enlisted Hugo Nicholson to do the remixes and the Dancing Heads EP was born. Hugo was a mix assistant to Andrew Weatherall - he worked on the classic Higher Than The Sun mixes for Primal Scream. For the EP he remixes Head, Beautiful Love and East Easy Rider, and he gives them all a pretty different feel. It's great stuff, so spliff up (if you do that kind of thing), kick back and enjoy the psychedelic space out...

Head (Remix) is not hugely different from the original - it features an extended vocal fadeout not on the first version.

Head (Long Meg And Her Daughters Mix) is a full on, beat driven beast. It's reduced to an instrumental, an is very much like something The Orb or Primal Scream were doing with it's dubby breakbeats and atmosphere. I love this groove.

Love (L.U.V.) (Beautiful Love Remix) was the "big hit single". This remix gives it a new, uptempo beat - kind of a jazzy shuffle, with a big bass line and some horn riffing added. The breakbeats at the end of this have a very Meat Beat Manifesto feel to them. To me this is another example of a "good remix" - the tune emerges as something quite different from it's origins.

Easty Risin' (East Easy Rider Remix) is a spaced out groove, again full of nice, dubby beats and spacey keys.

3 comments:

Anonymous said...

Julian Cope had a remix album? Wow! It's good, too!

Michael said...

Those were my thoughts when I first came across this all those years ago!

Ian66 (Disko Chimp) said...

You might like Hugo Nicholson's "solo" album, as Yellowhammer (came out earlier this year, I think). Sounds a bit like "new" 2 Lone Swordsmen having a crack at Tindersticks' back catalogue with it's tongue thrust firmly in it's cheek (I think).