In perfect time for Halloween, Anchor Bay have released this super-cool 'Phantasm' sphere DVD box set, prompting my quick 'Most Creatively Packaged DVD Box Set' top 5 with one simple rule - the TV show/film itself has to be damn good viewing:
4. Limited edition furry Bear's Tale, without a stiff woody you RASCLART!!!
3. Hellraiser Puzzle Box. Pinhead packaging could have rocked too but there's enough other Pinhead items like masks out there to be getting on with. Made me also think that if there was a 'Basket Case' Box Set, it could have come in an obvious Harrods-esque hamper with what inside? YOUR BROTHER!!!!
2. Book Of The Dead, what a read, couldn't put it down....
1. No messing with this Alien Head item where you prise open the top and place all 9 discs from the 'Quadrilogy' into its brain!!! The even more limited Japanese edition came with cute mini-Kubrick alien doll!!!
Anyway, back to Phantasm - as a kid the Tall Man terrified me and this film was too cult for its own good; I loved it. Those silver-spheres that landed in, then drilled thru the middle of human heads - just f*cking bonkers!!! So bonkers, those new Hugo Boss ads. with male hunks chucking silver Boss-balls is freaking me)
Phantasm introduced me to the whole appeal of 'DVD Extras' via my mate Jamie Caring. When he told me about footage of the Tall Man (Angus Scrimm) reciting his limited lines ('Boyyyyy!') at horror conventions to rapturous audience applause, I needed to check all this bonus material.
All this gratuitous 'bonus material' that gets lovingly lapped up is what Craig & I often call 'the Starbucks effect', nothing really to do with the coffee-shop chain but slightly long-windedly, named after a 'Solid Steel' radio show and its in-depth micro-analysis of Steinski and his 'Lessons Of Hip-Hop'.
In that Solid Steel/Steinski show, it was all those peripheral details, irrelevant yet so relevant, that we couldn't and still can't get enough of, to almost absurd levels; stuff along the lines of Steinski reminiscing about how the legendary records was produced, "Well, on the way to the studio that morning making the record, I stopped off for a Starbucks where I didn't have my normal 3 sugars...blah blah....That night, my wife slept on the left side when normally it's the right. I had a blister on my big toe....blah blah....". Essential on-point trivia.
When you're really into a particular piece of 'Pop Culture' (film/book/artist/classic album/director etc.) you can easily soak up everything and anything that surrounds your fixation.
Papers market this all the time, finding any loose 'exclusive' thread to re-hash another angle, normally on an celebrity icon - "I was John Lennon's gardener and boy, can I tell you some stories etc."
Similarly, record companies re-issue albums with a 'lost track', demo version, or by really exploiting the fanbase, bring out the same album adding an 'essential, never heard before' out-take. Yes, an out-take, that no one at the time probably wanted to or needed to hear but if we, the exploitative record company can get away with it, the fans are sure to buy it again (Mini Disc or SA-CD anyone?)
Film companies follow suit with DVD though it's slightly more forgiveable: Fincher's 'Fight Club' smacked me hard with hours of rushes breaking down the making of this terribly under-rated masterpiece (those CGI effects e.g. Ed Norton sucked out of the aeroplane window; serious presshah indeed!!) The numerous Matrix collections, climaxing in the 10-DVD Box set with dissections ad nauseam though cheeky/clever commentaries from people who hated the trilogy!!!
I've just bought 'Psycho' on DVD for about the 3rd time. Why? Wasn't the 'Psycho Collection Box Set' good enough? What about 'The Masterpiece Collection'? Um, no. It's not the "Ultra-premium Velvet Packaging" or Region 1's 'Anamorphic' transfer that's turned me on again; I think it could be the 15 minute extra 'featurette', the 'AFI Salute to Alfred Hitchcock'.
I can be a sucker when it comes to re-hashing, if, as I've said before, you absolutely LOVE the product in question. Take DJ Shadow's 'Entroducing', one of the most ground-breaking albums ever, appearing in all manner of 'best/favourite/essential/must have/all-time' lists. So, yesterday, I get the Starbucks effect' and impulse buy Eliot Wilder's book all about the making of 'Entroducing'. I want to find out what Shadow had for breakfast before/during/after making the album. Any coloured weather report pie charts to reflect his moods that may have affected some of the tracks?
If this book hits 2nd edition and offers a 1-track CD where Shadow farts for 2 seconds, I'll pre-order it now. Any hints of further re-presses with a bonus disc of Shadow coughing slightly on a re-discovered hidden track, it's on my wish list.
Alain De Botton's 'Status Anxiety' did much of the same; I bought the book, the DVD and the CD (often mixing in Alain's dulcet tones off the CD over techno on my Xfm Rinse Radio shows). I even got 'Status Anxiety' from all these different variations on a theme - when was the desk diary or toilet paper going to come out?
A combination of being a hardcore collector + the Starbucks effect can be lethal. Luckily I'm in recovery but for some, possibly still in denial, there's no cure and my thoughts are with you & your family. I've stumbled across loads over the years, from the guy who's been checking web prices of Black Sabbath records every day for the last 5 years to another guy compulsively having to own every audio format of every Bruce Springsteen recording, not forgetting the different covers/releases from all countries releasing records from The Boss.
Ebay's rife with this pathological level of psycho-geek - this guy snapped up anything touched by his god, Jean-Michel Jarre. Like the Britney's trapped fart bidding brigade, the Jean-Michel Jarre dude would probably monitor sales of the French synth wizard's stray pubic hair, left over food etc. given the chance.
Lately though the 'Starbucks effect' hit the 11 out of 10 mark thanks to the 2nd batch of 'Directors DVDs'. For those not in the know, these are DVDs mainly showcasing pop promos from leading players in this field. Having worked at MTV for over 12 years, I devoured pop vids. morning, noon & night, on average, clocking 85 new ones a week, most of those during the Tuesday playlist meeting, so I still crave the clip; it's in my blood!!!
Richard Brown & his crew who have painstakingly produced these get my full props. Each 'Directors DVD' comes in a good-looking box with a book of sketches, storyboards & notes from the particular director. As for the 'extras', game f*cking over!! Starbucks in FULL EFFECT!!! There's commercials, film clips and interviews/commentaries from the RIGHT talking heads not some wack-ass D-list pretty boy/girl TV presenter saying, "Ooo, I like this" in an effected regional accent!!!!!
Craig & I dipped into Mark Romanek's DVD the other night, particularly wanting all the juice from Jay-Z's '99 Problems' clip; we got what we wanted with Rick Rubin etc. dropping sound-byte science on this Brooklyn black & white banger.
'Palm Pictures' of course deserves props too for continuing to support a DVD series like this; so many obvious reasons why the 'Directors Label' is so essential:- inspiration to indsutry Creatives, an important digital document of our times, educational etc. etc.
If the Palm headz or Richard stumble across this blog whilst googling, let me suggest further Directors DVD installments from Godley & Creme, Jonas Akerlund, Wiz, Vaughn Arnell, Steve Barron, and self-indulgently Jean-Paul Goude, the unique vision behind much of Grace Jones' image plus New Order's 'True Faith' & FYC's 'She Drives Me Crazy' clips.
From: Angela Singh
Sent: 31 October 2005 11:44
To: James Hyman
Just wanted to say a massive thanks for sending me the summer mix and the
tarantino mash-up. They are fantastic and they have inspired me to become a
mix tape dj.....now i just have to get some decks, vinyl, mixer - well the
whole lot really.
Anyway thanks again and if you would like some chocolate, jam or crisps
please let me know and i would be happy to post some to you.
Friday, Yoda tells me he's got something very special for me, "Very ebay friendly", he says smilingly . So, en route to a 4PM Soho meeting, we hook up briefly, me with new mix-CD, Yoda with his suprise, both of us ready 'to you show me yours, I'll show you mine'. Yoda whips out his 3".......CD single which is actually a 3" vinyl CD if ya get me?
Simply genius and a format-first I'm sure.
The CD, sorry vinyl is a 5 minute mix of Yoda's new eagerly awaited album on Antidote, limited to a run of 100. What's next? 12" CD singles? 8 Track i-Pods? Cassette Mixing, er actually don't laugh - big up this guy, DJ Artyom doing just that, with the nut-nut pictures of him in action here.
If you wanna get nog, of course, 'Final Scratch' & 'Serato' are seriously Bronx; long gone are the days of lugging crates of records around to gigs, unless you still enjoy that. Plus, having literally thousands of tunes 'virtually' at your fingertips is so where it's at. Check the Numark/I-Pod DJ Mixing set up too (pictured left) - D-d--d-d-d-d-DOPE!
...just who is (still) one of the best at the 'mash-up' art-form out there? In my opinion, (apart from an obvious bias to Audio Shrapnel of course!!), it's Mark Vidler aka 'Go Home Productions'. The combined quality & quantity of his 'bastard pop' productions rank very highly.
Back in May 2002 when Eddy & I first discovered Go Home Productions (GHP) by airing 'Genie's Revenge', his response to another CLASSIC boot, Freelance Hellraiser's 'A Stroke Of Geneius', I knew Vidler/GHP had class, cheekyness and talent to go a long way, just like Freelance has with Sir Paul McCartney etc. In just under 2 years, GHP went on to work with Bowie for 'Rebel Never Gets Old'; I rest my case.
Like Shrapnel's surreal fusions (cutting Marillion & Rakim's lyrics together for 'I Know You Got Fish'!!), GHP's Productions can be so effective that whenever I hear one of the tracks somewhere else in isolation, a reflex kicks in and I can't stop hearing the ante-upped by my brain playing me back the blend as compared to one of the tracks on its own; that really is the bullseye of a 'mash-up' doing its job very well, as compared to average or shite! (aka a 'plopper'!)
Specifically, take 'Rock With Addiction (Awww)', that blended the dirty guitar off 'Just Because' by Jane's Addiction with Ashanti's 'Aww Baby'. If I hear either of those on their won as you'd normally expect to hear them, 'bastard pop' mode kicks in, over-riding any conventional aural association. Duran Duran's 'Notorious' is now ruined beautifully via 'Notorious Trick' with added Kelis. Similarly David Bowie's seminal Nile Rogers-produced 'Let's Dance' (as a single) is no longer what I used to imagine it ever since Liberty X took over in 'David X'. Bowie again with THE legend, Freddie Mercury for 'Under Pressure'; do I hear 'Ice Ice Baby'? Not any more, it's the bomb, 'Jacko Under Pressure'. I could go on and on. Just rummage around and download the bastard back-catelogue from GHP's site and you'll get it if you're new to all this.
November 14th sees GHP follow the legitimate 'bastard pop' path of Richard X when 'Rapture Riders', a mix of Blondie's 'Rapture' & The Doors 'Riders On The Storm' gets an official single release and inclusion on yet another (!) 'Greatest Hits' through EMI. Sharp-eared 'Rinse' listeners will remember 'Rapture Riders' getting its world premiere play on 'The Rinse' back in 2004 (January 23rd to be precise) under the 'AllenDean' guise. Furthermore, it was track 16 on 'James Hyman/DJ Mix Vol.2' which I think came out Summer 2003.
Anyway, I've often said in interview that it's 'Survival Of The Fittest' when it comes to leaders in this musical niche (i.e. the mash-up/bastard pop/bootleg scene); GHP's certainly evolved in those last 3 years and looks like staying firmly on top of the game.
As an acetate of Britney Spears' 'Everytime' single struggles to sell for 50 pence on ebay (item no. 4779433142), at the other extreme, music manager Andrian Adams is auctioning his share of the copyright on the same song with ebay starting price of £15,000. Andrian hopes it will reach about £100K and was quoted as saying,
"I'm selling my share in the song because I want to do other stuff with the money. I thought it would be wonderful to offer this opportunity to the millions of Britney fans all over the world - people who would never normally be in a position to make this type of acquisition."
Am I missing something here? Just how many Britney fans are "in a position to make this type of acquisition"?!!!! On second thoughts, fans supposedly bid & bought Britney's farts plus used 'Spear-mint' (!) chewing gum.
Around 9:30PM tonight (2 November) with about 1 hour left to go, I got a call from Andrian after he'd been googling; it hadn't clicked/I hadn't remembered we knew each other, having met & lunched together several months ago with a mutual composer friend. Andrian wondered if this item would reach £30K, well look, by the end it trebled it!!!! This could be the start of a very interesting trend.....
Certainly the end of the British Pub Quiz, as we know it now, with Google-application gadgets like this, 'nuff cheating!!!
Digging deeper and more practical, check out John Batelle's book, "The Search: How Google & Its Rivals Rewrote The Rules Of Business & Transformed Our Culture" with extract below - welcome to the future!!
Our tribute/on-line obit last year was here - lest we forget Peel's sincere, passionate contributions to the industry so we urge you to join in the Peel events, buy the imminent tribute CD or the awesome autobiography, (written by the woman who knew him best, er, his wife, Sheila!) And if you're Jewish, we urge you to atone for your sins!!!!
Caught up with Paul Weller last week at Xfm when he was in for 'Music Response'. His 'As Is Now' album's a serious, spendid return to form, punching back at the recent 'young upstarts' (Libertines, Maximo Park, Kaiser Chiefs, Paul Epworth etc.) who've stolen some Weller/Jam thunder, obviously and unavoidably having been influenced by the man himself.
Weller geeks/collectors are advised to buy their album from Virgin who are giving away a bonus 2-Track Remix CD (in-store only!) and talking of Remixes, big up Weller's knob-twiddling on the Ordinary Boys next single.
Noticed CustomImages a few weeks ago in the Daily Mail weekend so I thought I'd get in touch and let them 'vectorize' Kate & me for our 2nd anniversary together (celebrating today!). The results are excellent. Below shows the before & after with the Pop-Art similar to Lemon Jelly's cartoon images and more obviously, Blur's 'Best Of' album whose ace artwork was designed by Julian Opie. Julian's site is the 'Mac'-daddy!!!
This is just one way CustomImages can create a cool contemporary print from photos of you & your loved ones.
Quick, slick, friendly service and they'll put your masterpiece on various finishes; canvas strongly recommended!!
CDS: J.R. Tolkien's 'The Hobbit' (Radio 4 adaptation), Bill Hicks 'Rant In E-Minor', one of my 'Covered' comps, The Mercury Songbook of 100 Jazz Vocal Classics, a 4-CD Cuban 'I Am Time' Box Set (shaped & styled like Cuban cigar box!), a cheesy 'This Is Eurovision' compilation, an Immediate Records 60s 2-CD comp., Toots & Maytals 6-CD Trojan Box Set, Inside Deep Note 2 (1970's Adult Cinema Music!), The Archies & Marillion - The Singles '82-88'.
Saturday's shopping spree rounded off with Birthday presents for friends/family then final stop Camden Church for a rare occasion to flick 'n' pick up some semi-random vinyl (pretty much CD for me these days) in this case, 'Angela Rippon Reading Black Beauty', 12" white label of Gorillaz "Feel Good Inc." (with all parts i.e. acapella & instrumental) plus self-titled 1970 Barry Humphries LP (featuring early Dame Edna).
Time will tell.
Just how hot is this intro, Prelude' on Pendulum's album? Heat baby!!! This is a sizzla too, Phil just tipped me on it ("Beyond essential", he said!) and it's a 'Buy It Now', symptomatic of our 'instant gratification culture'.
The real street heat though, and focus of this blog is 'Baile Funk'. Last August, Shellshock sent me this insane 'Favela Booty Beats/Rio Baile Funk Vol.1' compilation - its energy was too damn hype. Standout tracks were De Falla's "Popozuda R'N' Roll" & MC Jack E Chocolate (!)'s "Pavaroty" with Os Tchutchucos' "Chapa Quente" the real cruise missile; such a scorcher I slammed it on my 'Best Of 2004' mix-CD in December. The same month I visited NY and dropped in to Turntable Lab and picked up Diplo's "Favela On Blast" mix-CD which again I had to air on Xfm's 'Rinse' pretty pronto. Diplo's keeping Baile Funk flava ghetto red with production on M.I.A's album and his new "FabricLive 24" mix out now with bonkers stuttered yodelling (!) on MC Joe's "Melo Do Piddle Le He He"; e-e-s-ss-s-ential!!!
Similarly Senor Coconut's 'Coconut FM - Legendary Latin Club Tunes' has Baile bangers, such as Malha Funk's "Nova Danca" with its (c)rude James Brown punctuated screams and Vanessinha Picatchu sampling Jack Marshall's quirky Munster's TV Theme for "Pega Pega".
So what's Baile Funk all about and why the fuss? You could describe it as Brazilian Booty Bass with a pinch of 'Planet Rock' that's ruffer than 'Reggaeton', but, hey, let me simply point you in the direction of these 2 articles that'll have you on the next plane out to Rio/Brazil sharpish! - Cliffy's "The Funk Phenomena" in the latest 'South American' issue of the continually outstanding free 'FACT' mag (boy, I love it's fresh smell!!) and last month's Observer Music Monthly had these wise words.
Read, research then get your KRUMP on!!!
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