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Monday, 14 February 2011

Burning Over - Ministy vs The Klaxons vs Grace


Ministry 'Burning Inside' vs The Klaxons 'It's Not Over Yet' vs Grace 'Not Over Yet'

Written by Al Jourgensen, Paul Barker, Bill Rieflin, Chris Connelly, Paul Oakenfold, Steve Osborne

Arranged by IronicHide

© Sire 1989, Polydor 2007, Perfecto 1995

Ah, Ministry, you crazy chumps.

I love Ministry. That is, I love The Land Of Rape And Honey, The Mind Is A Terrible Thing To Taste and Psalm 69. Most of what came before and afterward, well, kiddo, it all gets a bit samey once you're my age.

I had The Mind Is... on cassette back in 1994. It was a time when kudos in movies was earned by referencing Vietnam. And kudos in music was earned by referencing those movies.

I wore out my cassette of The Mind Is..., specifically from rewinding it again and again to listen to the first track, Thieves, and it's samples from Full Metal Jacket. There are two things I never appreciated back then: Good tape heads and Burning Inside, the track after Thieves.

(The fact that NWO, the opening track of Psalm 69, had samples from Apocalypse Now in it didn't matter, I'd upgraded to cds by then. Because I'm big time, kiddo.)

The Klaxons, on the other hand, are probably more your thing, really, aren't they? They're a bit Shoreditch to me. Meaning, they get more attention from girls and probably have really tight jeans on. However, as things that are a bit Shoreditch go, they're on the amenable end of the spectrum.

Like the Electricity Showroom bar. Not like T4 presenters.

But this is all guff and chaff. Back in 2007, in a basement lounge in Ealing, when I was first poking at tunes like rodents in a shoebox, seeing if I could prompt them to fight, I resurrected my love of industrial music. Largely because of the repetitive instrumental sequences with precision-tight timing. Useful for a mashup.

I had a few mashups going but the first to catch on and demand to be worked on was this one, welding the rattling 16/8 main riff and drums from Ministry with the nee-nah guitar phrase from The Klaxons.

Maybe I was wrong in 1994 and right in 2007, looking back through the slew of opinion pieces on industrial music - and you're lucky I took that bullet for you - I realise that Burning Inside was much more respected than Thieves. Then again, I reckon Hizbollah is the best thing on The Land Of..., so what do I know, bubba?

Plus, Totom had already hit the ball out of the ground with his Thieveshake mashup.

Plus, plus, I already knew and loved Grace's original version of Not Over Yet from the 1990s. Yes, I so totally did. Getting the samples from Grace took longer than should have been necessary - downloading all five remixes, legally, I assure you, recasting them as a Wav file, playing with that in my editing software, finding the 29 seconds (of over 30 minutes) I would use, then exporting that as an MP3.

Still, the bit when her synths collide with Will Rieflin's drumroll around the two-minute mark sounded like a little bit of magic to me and was, I admit, more fluke than design, but one of the few moments I'm proud of in these first early mashups.

Although most of this track was done in 2007, I only added the Klaxons vocals in late 2010, taking out some of Grace's. I probably spent more time getting their amplification where I wanted it in the mix (and I'm still not happy) than I did chopping together the Ministry instrumental skeleton.

This was also the first mashup I made using what I think of as the Lego block method - chopping tracks in to four or five clips to be used (each being four, eight or sixteen bars long) before even starting a mix - building the resulting blocks together to make a rough edit.

So there you go. The first mashup I've made available. Not the first I intended to make available, though. A record label have taken their ball and gone home with it. So no jazz-electro minimalism for us today.

Thoughts, comments, threats, etc, are always welcome.

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