I’ve just released a 5 track digital EP and video for the Mountain King album track –
‘You Are Electric’. Below is a track by track breakdown and a link to the Music/Video page. Thanks for your support and I hope you enjoy the EP! – Craig
For track 1 of the EP and for the video, I created a more electronic mix of ‘You Are Electric’, replacing the orchestral instruments used on the album version with analogue synths. I was aiming for a more Kraftwerk-like sound on this mix. The lo-fi Speak & Spell toy samples of the original, always reminded me of Kraftwerk and I wanted to exaggerate this more on the EP mix. Perhaps it also sounds a little more like the tracks on the Monumental album?
The music for the EP Mix then inspired the concept for the video. I wanted to create a minimal / geekish / Kraftwerk style performance and I thought it could be fun to parody my gesticulations that were the essence of the Space Cowboy clip. So I set the camera up on the tripod in front of a green screen and did some ad lib performances (that is, without practice or really knowing what I was doing) and recorded five takes. From this, I cut together the performance and created the motion graphics in After Effects to accompany it – always the most time consuming aspect of the process. Yes, it’s another weird, graphical Space March video but interesting in its weirdness, I hope ;-)
On track 2, I cover the New Order song ‘Age of Consent’ which is the opening track on their second album – Power, Corruption and Lies. I had some great feedback from Facebook and Twitter fans on New Order songs to cover which helped me form a short list – ‘True Faith’, ‘1963’, ‘Crystal’ and ‘Age of Consent’. I chose ‘Age of Consent’ because it was least like the sort of song I would do and I wanted to venture out of my comfort zone and be challenged. ‘Age of Consent’ is two basic chords throughout the entire song (how do you keep things interesting for 5 minutes on two chords?); relies a lot on the bass guitar riff (can synths successfully replace guitars on a song like this?); is a very fast tempo (my songs typically fall between 100 – 127 bpm and this one clocks in at 152 bpm). As you can see – vastly different to the sort of song I usually do. Whilst I love the New Order version, I really wanted to make a creative interpretation and not sound like a New Order covers band! I did however, incorporate a few cheeky New Order touches into my version such as using an Oberheim DMX drum machine (Blue Monday) handclap sound, playing a live Melodica (that keyboard you blow into like a woodwind instrument used on a few early New Order tracks such as ‘Your Silent Face’ and ‘Love Vigilantes’) and the vocal noises on the outro with shades of ‘Temptation’. All in all, it was a lot of fun!
This track is a previously unreleased song called ‘The Ocean’. This is one of those songs which has been floating around for quite a while but for what ever reason, I could never complete. So I decided to finish it off for the EP. I’ll be interested to know what you think of this track – to me it feels a bit like a simpler sort of Goldfrapp song.
For track 4, I enlisted the remixing skills of the talented Sean Callahan aka nickelPUNK. With some tight drum programming, he’s really made the track quite dancey whilst still retaining the structure and melody of the original. This remix sounds both retro and contemporary, which is very cool. I particular like how he’s done that EDM style break for the second part of the vocal melody which adds interest. Check out his other music productions at nickelPUNK.com
And of course, track 5 is the orchestral, album version of ‘You Are Electric’ which I included for those new comers who are unfamiliar with the Mountain King album.