“I’m Afraid of Americans” is a song and single by David Bowie from the 1997 album Earthling. The song, co-written by Bowie and Brian Eno, was originally written during Bowie’s studio sessions for the 1995 album Outside but was not released until a rough mix appeared on the soundtrack to the film Showgirls, and was subsequently remade for Earthling. Bowie describes the feelings behind the song: “It’s not as truly hostile about Americans as say “Born in the U.S.A.”: it’s merely sardonic. I was traveling in Java when its first McDonald’s went up: it was like, “for fuck’s sake.” The invasion by any homogenised culture is so depressing, the erection of another Disney World in, say, Umbria, Italy, more so. It strangles the indigenous culture and narrows expression of life.” “I’m Afraid of Americans” originally appeared as a rough mix on the soundtrack to the film Showgirls (in which the chorus is “I’m afraid of the animals” instead of the later “I’m afraid of Americans”) and was subsequently remade for Earthling. This version and two of the Nine Inch Nails remixes were released on the bonus disc of the Digibook Expanded Edition of Earthling in 2004. The song is sampled for a remix of Company Flow’s “Patriotism” when El-P performs it. A CD single for “I’m Afraid of Americans” was released in the United States. The single did not include the album version of the song; instead, it featured remixes of the track performed by Bowie’s former tourmates, Nine Inch Nails, and drum and bass artist Photek.
Ozzy is the world’s biggest Beatle fan. “I Just Want You” started out, on the original demo recording, with a “Strawberry Fields” flute motif cycling through the verses, eventually building to a heavy chorus with drums and guitars (listen to the “demo version” above). Ozzy fought to keep those elements in, but producer Michael Beinhorn erased all Beatle references when he cut the studio version of the song. [Source]
Ozzy Osbourne: vocals
Zakk Wylde: guitar
Rick Wakeman: keyboards
Michael Beinhorn: keyboards
Geezer Butler: bass
Deen Castronovo: drums
Produced by Michael Beinhorn. Recorded by Paul Northfield at Guillaume Tell Studios (Paris), Right Track Recording (New York), Bearsville Studios (Woodstock), Electric Lady Studios (New York). Mixed by David Bianco.
From the ‘inspirational cassette tape’ (that also included Nine Inch Nails) that Michael Beinhorn sent to the writers:
Ambient music fans check your pulses with this mesmerizing and ethereal interpretation of Big Black Delta’s new single “Betamax” by SONOIO. Clocking in at it’s mere 9:13, the solo project of Italian musician Alessandro Cortini (of notable Nine In Nails fame), takes the reigns of “Betamax”, lifting listeners through high and low crecendi of cinematic soundscapes with his dramatic mix of permeating melody and orchestrated noise. Big Black Delta’s new single “Betamax” will be released on November 5th, and a collection of remixes via Kove, Deft, Climbers and more will become available digitally and on vinyl November 19th. Expect Big Black Delta’s aticipated follow up to the successful BBDLP1 LP in early 2013. [Source]
Veteran producer Adrian Sherwood has manned the boards for acts like Nine Inch Nails, the Cure, Blur, and Primal Scream. On August 21, he steps out with his third solo album, Survival & Resistance, via On-U Sound. [Source]
In 1956, eccentric bluesman Screamin’ Jay Hawkins released “I Put a Spell on You”. On it, Hawkins sounds unstable, possessed. “I don’t care if you don’t want me, I’m yours right now,” he rips, probably causing his object of affection to freak the fuck out. Legend has it Hawkins blacked out during the song’s recording session. More than 50 years later, he still comes off stupendously totaled. Matthew Dear’s “You Put a Smell on Me”, from his fine new LP Black City, sounds nothing like “I Put a Spell on You”. It rolls on a sleek S&M thud descended from Depeche Mode and Nine Inch Nails’ “Closer”. Dear’s low monotone is as in control as Hawkins’ is undone. But there’s a constant: arch menace. In a way, “Smell on Me” is even more frightening than “Spell on You”, and there’s no hope for the object of Dear’s desire. The drums hypnotize. The purr soothes. While it seems like Hawkins’ prey has a chance of escaping his whiskey’d grasp, Dear’s steely precision leaves no room for error. [Source]
[via Mark Jensen]