The Safety Dance

The Safety Dance was released by Canadian band Men Without Hats back in 1982. According to Last.fm:

The writer/lead singer, Ivan Doroschuk, has explained that “The Safety Dance” is a protest against bouncers prohibiting dancers from pogoing to 1980s new wave music in clubs when disco was dying and new wave was up and coming. New wave dancing, especially pogoing, was different from disco dancing, because it was done individually instead of with partners and involved holding the torso rigid and thrashing about. To uninformed bystanders this could look dangerous, especially if pogoers accidentally bounced into one another (the more deliberately violent evolution of pogoing is slamdancing). The bouncers did not like pogoing so they would tell pogoers to stop or be kicked out of the club. Thus, the song is a protest and a call for freedom of expression.

The song’s video is well worth seeing, not least for the rather anachronistic medieval stylings, but I have to admit that I am rather taken by the more recent version recorded by and the marvellously named Danish band, The Asteroids Galaxy Tour.

What Is Love

What Is Love, as I’m sure everyone remembers, is a 1993 dance track by the singer Haddaway. The song was popular with club DJs and reached #2 in the UK top 40.

Skameleon is “Germany’s only Ska CoverBand.” They have a cover of What is Love.

It’s quite good, although I’m not entirely sure what is going on with the bassist.

The Magnificent

According to Last.fm:

The One World Orchestra Featuring the Massed Pipes And Drums of the Children’s Free Revolutionary Volunteer Guards is the name that The KLF went by for the recording of ‘The Magnificent’ for the Warchild charity album ‘Help’. The song is a drum ‘n’ bass cover version of the theme from The Magnificent Seven, with contributions from Belgrade DJ Fleka from Serbian radio station B92.

Having pulled a bunch of old cassettes out of the basement, I am now in the process of recovering and cleaning up a whole stack of old CDs. The CDs have been there for a while and we had a bit of a flood a few years ago, so drying out the disks and removing the mould is proving to be quite a slow process. But I am getting there and am discovering a fair few forgotten gems in the process. One of these has been the War Child CD help, which I bought back in the 1990s.

There are many outstanding tracks on this CD, including The Magnificent by The One World Orchestra Featuring the Massed Pipes And Drums of the Children’s Free Revolutionary Volunteer Guards, also known as The KLF.

Enjoy.

Whistling in the Dark

I mentioned last week that I had been clearing some junk out of the basement and, in doing so, stumbled across a number of my old cassettes. On Wednesday I caught myself humming a tune that I knew (obviously, I was humming it) but couldn’t place.

I have finally managed to identify the song: it’s Whistling in the Dark from the They Might Be Giants album, Flood.

It’s an annoyingly catchy tune that has been buzzing around my mind for most of the week. Now it’s your turn.

Birdhouse in Your Soul

While clearing out some of the junk we still have in the basement, I discovered a box full of cassettes, among which was the They Might Be Giants album, Flood which I bought way back in the 20th Century. It’s been a long long time since I have listened to anything from this band, primarily because all of the music I have from them is on either vinyl or cassette, so my sense of nostalgia took me to the next best thing — You Tube.

It was on YouTube that I discovered that Becky Buller Band have a Bluegrass Country cover of this song that really is quite charming.

Street parties, spaghetti westerns and my new favourite IPA

Kattenfeest is a street party that takes locally every year on the penultimate weekend of August. It’s a day of music, street theatre and kids activities as well as an opportunity for local clubs and groups to generate some interest and raise a bit of revenue that runs well into the evening. We don’t tend to stay overly late (young kids and all that) but it is a pleasant way to pass a sunny afternoon.

We ended up at a bar being manned by the karate club which had put a mat out in order to perform some demonstrations. Here they were serving a selection of local beers, which is how I came to be drinking a Schieve Hop from the Brouwerij De Schieve. I think I have just discovered my new favourite IPA.

Schieve Hop is a very pleasant dark blonde beer with a flavour that is hoppy, but not overpoweringly so. It went down very well, and was much appreciated, on the warm summer afternoon and is a beer I will certainly look out for again. I also loved the fact that the glass was almost as slanted as I was.

And so to my discovery of the day.

I have mentioned the music and this takes the form of a series of bands that play throughout the afternoon and into the evening. One of these bands (Taat Zot & Jasper, I think) was playing a series of 1950s and 1960s covers, including a rather good rendition of the theme from A Fistful of Dollars (or something very similar). This inspired a brief YouTube search and the discovery that this theme has also been performed by the Danish National Symphony Orchestra.

Enjoy.