Music Labyrinth Episode 079
Weird Fishes/ Arpeggi - Radiohead (2007)
Hello Listener, and welcome to episode 79 of the Music Labyrinth. 79, as it turns out, is the atomic number of gold. It is also the date (79AD) of the catastrophic eruption of Mt Vesuvius in Italy. Now, whilst that is patently not a good thing, I’ve read the tea leaves and examined the entrails, and I’m interpreting all that as a guaranteed eruption of absolute musical gold in the course of episode 79 of this program. And, what better way to deliver on that augury, than to place the responsibility for programming this episode into the hands of The Music Labyrinth Elves!? - which is precisely what we have done. All the music for this episode (with the exception of the opening track which carries over from last episode) have been chosen by The Elves, and all of the links between the songs have been researched by them. I’ve even been provided with a script, in classical Elvish calligraphy, so all of the cool observations and witty quips which follow, from the very end of the next sentence, will be entirely the work of The Elves. Here we go.
If you’ve been here before, thanks for coming back! If you’re new here, the premise is fairly simple: we begin each episode where we finished the last, finding new and exciting links to get us from one song to the other, only to inevitably arrive at Peter Gabriel (just a jape, Sir...)
Our opening track tonight was Weird Fishes / Arpeggi from Radiohead. Record producer Nigel Godrich has had a hand in all of Radiohead’s projects since they first collaborated on Ok Computer, but Godrich was absent for the initial recordings of In Rainbows, the album that our opening track for this episode comes from. The guitarist for Radiohead, Ed O’Brien, stated that it was to get the band out of their comfort zone, but Godrich has said he was just busy working with other artists, such as this one:
Go It Alone - Beck (2005)
That was Beck with Go It Alone. (A Dan certified classic!) Go It Alone is the opening track on the 2005 album Guero, which has a bunch of cool features and collaborations, including artists like Money Mark of the Beastie Boys and Petra Haden of The Rentals. But let’s keep it Dad-friendly. Perhaps the most noticeable part of Go It Alone is the bass, which is credited to Jack White. Let’s hear more from Jack with The White Stripes:
I Just Don’t Know What To Do With Myself- The White Stripes (2003)
Hello again! We just listened to The White Stripes with I Just Don’t Know What To Do With Myself. The music video for the Stripes’ version of the song is directed by Sophia Coppola, and features Kate Moss as an exotic dancer. And that’s about it. Kate Moss, the busy woman she is, appears in a lot of unexpected places. See if you can pick up the reference to her in this next song:
Tous les mêmes - Stromae (2013)
That was Stromae with Tous les mêmes. Now, you may have noticed that that song was not in English, or maybe you just thought ‘gee, this guy has a terrible cold’. The lyrics, however, are quite clever and tongue-in-cheek, and tell the story of a couple in the midst of a messy breakup. If you have good ears, you probably heard the line “Il n'y a que Kate Moss qui est éternelle” which translates to “only Kate Moss is eternal[ly beautiful]”.
Stromae, aside from being a fan of Kate Moss, is quite a successful hip hop and house musician in France, but received international acclaim when he collaborated with Kanye West on the track Alors On Danse. And, for a special elf surprise, let’s do a double play! The link between the next track, All Falls Down by Kanye West, and the one following it is a fairly obvious one, so we’ll play them back to back.
All Falls Down - Kanye West (2004)
Killing Me Softly With His Song - The Fugees with Ms Lauryn Hill (1996)
Welcome Back to the Music Labyrinth, where we listened to All Falls Down by Kanye West, followed by Killing Me Softly With His Song by The Fugees. All Falls Down featured a very prominent interpolation of Lauryn Hill’s song Mystery of Iniquity, so it seemed only natural to follow with more of Lauryn Hill’s work with her group, The Fugees. Ms Hill is something of a pillar of the hip hop community, and although her discography is frustratingly short, the quality is exceptionally high. Her solo album The Miseducation of Lauryn Hill won Best Album at the 41st annual Grammy Awards, and Hill set a record for most nominations received in one night. The 41st Grammys is often referred to as the Grammy Year of Women because of the high percentage of female artists in the nominee pool. Let’s hear from another female-led nominated act from that year:
I Think I’m Paranoid - Garbage (1998)
That was Garbage with I Think I’m Paranoid. The lead singer of Garbage, Shirley Manson, was a pioneer figure in the 90s post-grunge scene, and went on to inspire many successive acts. Hayley Williams from Paramore is quoted in an article by NME saying: “I remember seeing bands like No Doubt and Garbage when I was growing up – bands with strong, confident women at the forefront – and feeling like these were people I had more in common with than anybody I’d ever met in school. I looked at them and went, ‘I can do that, I have that in me.’” Pretty cool! Let’s hear from Paramore with their song Decode.
Decode - Paramore (2008)
Welcome back to the Music Labyrinth. That was Paramore with Decode. Now, when you think of the greatest film soundtracks of all time, what comes to mind? If you said anything other than Twilight, you’d be wrong! The song we just heard is included on the soundtrack for the first Twilight film, which went platinum twice in Australia. And for good reason! There are lots of very surprising contributions to the soundtracks of the Twilight pentalogy including Muse, Eskimo Joe, Thom Yorke, Iron and Wine, and this next artist.
Cousins - Vampire Weekend (2010)
That was Vampire Weekend with their song Cousins from the album Contra. Cousins was one of the singles off of the album, as was Giving Up the Gun (which has already been played, but Dad wasted it by taking a much less cool route). The music video for Giving Up the Gun features a whole gang of guest features, including Jake Gyllenhaal, Lil John, RZA, and Joe Jonas. Here is Joe Jonas and his group DNCE with Cake By The Ocean:
Cake By The Ocean - DNCE (2015)
That was Cake By The Ocean by DNCE. Now, we’ll go the safe route and assume the average listener of this program might not be familiar with Joe Jonas, and so for those who aren’t, Joe and his two brothers were in a band together called (funnily enough) The Jonas Brothers. The Jonas Brothers became popular through their appearances on Disney Channel in the early 2000s and eventually branched out to pursue solo careers. For example, Nick Jonas was recently cast in a proshot version of Jersey Boys, a musical based upon the lives of this next group.
Can’t Take My Eyes Off You - Frankie Valli and the Four Seasons (1967)
That was Frankie Valli and the Four Seasons with Can’t Take my Eyes Off You, released in 1967. In that same year, The Four Seasons released their version of the song Beggin’, which has been covered many times, but most recently in 2017 by the Italian glam rock band Måneskin. Let’s hear their version:
Beggin’ -Måneskin (2017)
Welcome back to the Music Labyrinth. We just Listened to Beggin’ by Måneskin. Earlier I mentioned that Måneskin is a glam rock band, which is a subgenre encompassing both music and fashion that originated in the early 1970s. There are many great artists of the genre, but what better way to capture the essence of glam rock than with the musical that cemented its place in the culture? From the Rocky Horror Picture Show, this is Dammit Janet.
Dammit Janet- Rocky Horror (1975)
That was Dammit Janet from the Rocky Horror Picture Show. The music from the film was all composed by Richard O’Brien, who also played Riff Raff. Rocky Horror is perhaps O’Brien’s most well known work, but he also had a recurring role as Lawrence on the Disney Channel show Phineas and Ferb. The theme song for which was performed by this next band:
1985- Bowling For Soup (2004)
That was 1985, performed by Bowling For Soup. As previously mentioned, Bowling For Soup performed the theme song for the American animated musical comedy TV series Phineas and Ferb, which followed along with an early 2000s trend of musicians recording theme music for Disney Channel shows. One such example of this is the theme music for another animated TV series The Proud Family.
The Proud Family - Destiny’s Child feat. Solange Knowles (2001)
Welcome back to the Music Labyrinth where we listened to the Proud Family by Destiny’s Child and Solange. In season 3, episode 4 of the Proud Family Mariah Carey makes a guest appearance after her pet monkey, Francois, gets switched with the Proud’s monkey, Mr Chips, at the vet. That’s just bananas! And is in no way pertinent to the next song, but still seemed necessary to share. The instrumental for the next track, however, can be heard multiple times throughout the episode.
Fantasy- Mariah Carey (1995)
That was Mariah Carey and her song Fantasy. Those of you with a good set of ears and a passion for 1980s new wave music probably picked up on the sample from this next song:
Genius of love- Tom Tom Club (1981)
That was Tom Tom Club with Genius of Love. That track is from their 1981 self-titled debut, which contains their most popular songs. A lot of great albums came out in ‘81, including Tattoo You by the Rolling Stones, Face Value by Phil Collins and Bella Donna by Stevie Nicks. But who wants to hear those guys? Beloved Swedish pop band ABBA released their album The Visitors in 1981, and here’s their song Head over Heels:
Head Over Heels - ABBA (1981)
Woohoo!! That was ABBA with Head Over Heels. Gee, why don’t we play ABBA more often? The music of ABBA is featured very prominently in the Aussie cult classic film Muriel’s Wedding. Also featured on the soundtrack is this tune by Peter Allen.
Peter Allen - I Go To Rio (1976)
Welcome back to the Music Labyrinth where we just listened to Peter Allen’s I Go to Rio. Peter Allen had a great musical career, including an Academy Award for Best Original Song and a visit to the Radio City Music Hall riding on a camel. Allen was also the first husband to Liza Minelli. They were married for three years before separating in 1970. Let’s hear from Liza Minelli in the musical Cabaret.
Money Money - Cabaret (1972)
That was Money Money from Cabaret. That musical is sampled several times in the Avalanches’ debut album Since I left You. Listen for it in the beginning of this next song which comes from that album. This is Two Hearts in ¾ Time:
Two Hearts in ¾ Time - The Avalanches (2000)
That was The Avalanches and their song Two Hearts in ¾ Time. The album, Since I left You, contains over 1000 samples, most of which are still yet to be discovered or disclosed. There are video breakdowns and websites detailing all of the known samples, which are very cool and definitely worth a look. Here is one more song sampled on Since I Left You:
Holiday - Madonna (1983)
You’re listening to the Music Labyrinth where we just heard Holiday by Madonna. Hopefully you’re feeling refreshed after that. What? No? Hmm, perhaps its time for another holiday. Let’s take one with Dizzee Rascal.
Holiday - Dizzee Rascal (2009)
Welcome back to the Music Labyrinth where we’ve just indulged in two separate holidays. We’ve also sadly come to the end of tonight’s episode because Dan has finally let us out of the basement he keeps us in while we write these episodes for him (legal disclaimer: thats not entirely true).
On a more serious note, we the Elves want to say thanks very much for letting us take over for the night. Thank you everyone for listening, we really appreciate you taking the time out of your evening and hopefully you enjoyed the journey. Your regular host will be back next fortnight to dazzle you with more musical trivia and his old man charm.
To finish off tonight’s episode, let's take a short leap. Dizzee Rascal has recorded and toured with the English singer, songwriter and actress, Lily Allen. Here is Lily with her track Littlest Things. Goodnight everyone!
Elves out xoxo
Littlest Things - Lily Allen (2006)