Saturday, July 28, 2007

Death Served Three Ways

David Holmes’s ‘Don’t Die Just Yet’ is basically a remix, or maybe even a cover version, of Serge Gainsbourg’s ‘Melody’. Whatever it is, Holmes does a damn fine job, adding an immediate, edgy sound to it, and opting to remove the lyrics. Released in 1997, it sits perfectly on the excellent ‘Let’s Get Killed’ LP. Job done then? Well, no, not when you can get a selection of the choice bands of the day to remix your remix, which is what Holmes (or the record label?) did for the single release. I like the way that even though it is essentially the same song, each remixer stamps their individuality on it, relative to the respective character of the bands. As well as the mixes I’ve posted below, there were also versions from La Funk Mob, the Max 404 Optimystic Disco Dub, as well as the lengthy ‘Don’t Chant Just Yet’ mix by Holmes himself.

David Holmes – The Holiday Girl (Don't Die Just Yet) by Arab Strap

Drunken, bearded, Scottish lo-fisters (!) Arab Strap do a brilliant arrangement of the song, transforming it into a standalone Arab Strap song by adding a typical Aidan Moffat vocal over the downbeat, piano looped track. In ‘The Holiday Girl’ Moffat tells the story of a romance that could have been at a hotel while on a family holiday when he was 13. “I was’nae into it. So I went outside an’ stood on the patio, looking at the night sea, trying to look deep.”

David Holmes – Don't Die Just Yet (Delakota Mix)

Delakota. Now there was a band. One minute they were pegged by all and sundry to be the next Primal Scream, and the very next minute they were gone. Hmm, maybe a post on them could be in the offing? Anyway, another solid effort, perhaps a little more plodding than the others and it is over seven minutes long, but it maintains the dark feel of the package, adding some sinister vocal samples with a violent story about a couple getting into a big stabbing match. “Don’t worry son, these two do this all the time.”

David Holmes – Don't Die Just Yet (Mogwai Mix)

Typically fierce, starting with a recurring looped voice sample, gradually drowning out the funkier bass elements of the Holmes original and lulling you into a false sense of security before bludgeoning you to death with a mass of loud white noise and feedback, and finally slamming you back down to earth with the end of the vocal loop. Again it is very Mogwai, which I guess is the point of this post.

Full David Holmes discography
Buy David Holmes from Amazon
Arab Strap RIP website
Delakota discography
Mogwai website