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musique, non-stop…

December 3, 2009

Over the past 6 months, I’ve been collecting artefacts from the 80s revival. The ones which looked good are all in the Powerhouse Museum’s The 80s are Back exhibition, which opens next week. The ones which sounded good, but didn’t look like anything (songs, noises, interviews), are all here, for your listening pleasure. It’s a mixtape – although I suppose in the 80s they would have called it a Megamix. It’s 40% vintage synth-pop, 30% 21st century robot rock, 20% seldom-heard voices from the vaults, and 10% stuff I taped off the TV. My friend called it ‘cultural theory you can dance to’, which is the best I could hope for, really. Enjoy!

2 Comments leave one →
  1. John Robertson permalink
    January 8, 2010 1:27 pm

    Hey Craig, Love the Mega Mixx! It’s the best. I heard heaps of Art of Noise in there, a group that is seldom mentioned but I believe had a huge influence on music in the 80’s

    I have one question for you: At 2 minutes 20 sec there is a grab of a song I have heard you use a few times. The lyrics are: ‘this is what you want, this is what you get’. Can you please put me out of my misery ant let me know the song and artist it’s been bugging me for weeks!

    Once again thanks heaps for all of this, I just wish I was going to Sydney or the exhibition was touring to Brisy! ???????



    • January 11, 2010 12:12 am

      Hi John,

      I think you’re right about Art of Noise. There was a period of a couple of years in the 80s where all the big pop and dance records seemed to feature some variation of the AON signature sound – the big sampled horn stabs and orchestral wallops, the crashing drum loops, the digital dada syllable cut-ups. They had a huge influence on Hip Hop as well – I seem to remember reading that ‘Close the Edit’ and ‘Beat Box’ were both big records for breakdancers. DJ shadow has talked in interviews about how they opened his young mind up to the possibilities of sampling, but also gave him the idea that you cut use sampling, cutting and mixing to build moods and suggest emotions (as AON did to such great effect on ‘Moments in Love’ and In Visible Silence.) And then there’s the Prodigy’s ‘Firestarter’, ‘and that famous ‘hey!’

      The track you’re after is ‘The Order of Death’ by Public Image Limited. I put it in because I love the mood it creates, but also because it forms part of sub-plot running through the mix about Wants and Needs – both big pop themes, and something I’ve been thinking about a lot since writing Hey! Nietzsche!. It begins with Michael J Fox saying ‘all I want is a Pepsi’, and then includes…

      Order of Death (This is what you want, this is what you get)
      Money for Nothing (‘I want my MTV’)
      What You Need
      Needy Girl
      Do You Want More
      Money (‘I Want Money’)
      Audacity of Huge
      Sweet Dreams
      The Things that Dreams Are Made Of

      Thanks for writing – and stay tuned for news of the Powerhouse show touring – I have heard talk…


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