Saturday, February 17, 2007

Spaced Out, Glazed Over

Primal Scream - Screamadelica

Which came first - the song or the album title? That is the question that I am posing today, by posting two songs named after classic albums, which didn’t feature on the albums themselves. Or was it the other way around? And does it really matter? Probably not, though I’m pretty sure Primal Scream’s ‘Screamadelica’ came out of the recording sessions for the seminal album. Following ‘Screamadelica’ was always going to be a near-on impossible task, so the band headed to Ardent Studios in Memphis, Tennessee with Weatherall in tow and recorded ‘Stone My Soul’ and a cover of Beach Boy Dennis Wilson’s ‘Carry Me Home’, both smacky strung-out blues numbers with Gillespie in full comedown mode. These two tracks, along with ‘Movin’ On Up’ and the aforementioned ‘Screamadelica’ made up the ‘Dixie-Narco EP’, which was released in 1992 on Creation Records, and reached #12 in the charts. ‘Screamadelica’ (the song) featured Leftfield’s Paul Daley on percussion, and was co-produced by Weatherall and Boy’s Own’s Hugo Nicolson. Over a sprawling 10 minutes, the only vocal of note comes from Denise Johnson (who also sang on ‘Don’t Fight It, Feel It’) though there are a few samples chucked in for good measure. The entire production feels more like a Sabres of Paradise track than Primal Scream, though the writing credits are given to Innes/Young/Gillespie so they must had a hand in somewhere along the line. There’s some lovely brass from the Kick Horns on the go, as well as a joyous flute. It’s basically a pretty fine summer track with a loping beat, made solely for Bobby G to clap his hands and dance around to.

Ride - Going Blank Again

In the case of ‘Going Blank Again’, the phrase was coined by the band as a sarcastic swipe at the critics who claimed they were vacant and had nothing to say. Perhaps they named the album first and then decided to write the song (”I’m glazed over, no one’s home”). Or maybe they wrote the song, planning that it would go on the album, but then it was left off. The song (an Andy Bell composition) is brilliant and could easily have fitted somewhere on the album, though I’m sure there was a good reason why it didn’t feature. It eventually popped up as part of the ‘Twisterella EP’, (also released on Creation Records in 1992), along with two other great tracks, ‘Howard Hughes’ and ‘Stampede’. Its three minutes of chiming Byrdsian guitar pop, with gorgeous harmonies between Mark and Andy, and some typically awesome drumming from Loz. I will always remember it for the lyric, “Chairs and tables move around, but I just stay the same” , as only a couple of days before buying the EP, I had moved all the furniture around in my bedroom during a bout of miserableness brought on by a difficult relationship I was in at the time. Of course, it didn’t make me feel any better, but then I heard the song, thus sealing my belief that Ride wrote songs just for me.

Buy Primal Scream from Norman Records
Buy Ride from Norman Records
Search eBay for the 'Dixie-Narco EP'
Search eBay for the 'Twisterella EP'
Primal Scream website
Ride fansite
Primal Scream My Space
Ride My Space