Tuesday, February 19, 2008

Singles Going Steady 18: The Chemical Brothers


In the UK at least, all the UK press coverage of the Grammys was firmly focused on Amy Winehouse. Fair enough I suppose, here was ‘our girl’ cleaning up at an American awards show, and it was Troubled Amy of course, being let out of rehab to do what she does best. In all these tales of redemptive awards and covered-up tattoos, I almost failed to notice that the award for best electronic/dance album went to The Chemical Brothers. It just seemed a bit odd really, like it should have been ten years ago or something. My first thought was that the Grammy organisers must be lacking a decent pool of electronic/dance albums to choose from, but now I see that the shortlist included Sound of Silver, the decision seems just nuts.

Not that I don’t like The Chemical Brothers though. In fact, they’ve provided the soundtrack to various parts of my life. It’s just that these parts seem quite far in the past now. Maybe it’s just musical fashion and maybe it’s our national British fickleness that's meant that over the 13 years since they emerged with their first album Exit Planet Dust, the inital mountain of acclaim has gradually but definitely diminished. Maybe that’s why even if there was a best electronic/dance award at the Brit Awards, it the Chems probably still wouldn’t be on the shortlist. Or maybe it’s just that they really aren’t as good as they used to be.

For me at least, with the Brothers, it’s all about time and place. Exit Planet Dust was at the vanguard of the mid/late 90s big beat scene which saw my arrival in London and immersion into parts of the London club scene. I’ve never actually seen the Chemicals ‘properly’ live, but have danced a-plenty to their DJ sets at the likes of the Heavenly Jukebox at Turnmills. I still remember the last night of that club, still dancing to Tom and Ed's records after the lights had gone up. Good times.

With that in mind here's some prime Chemical Brothers from the only CD singles I have of theirs - and Underworld reworking of the single Leave Home from Exit Planet Dust, and two tracks from the follow-up to that album, the Loops of Fury EP.

Download: The Chemical Brothers - Leave Home (Underworld Mix One)
Download: The Chemical Brothers - Loops of Fury
Download: The Chemical Brothers - Get Up on it Like This

3 comments:

Anonymous said...

their newest "we are the night" is a great great album, a trip a high and a comedown. brilliant.

hedmekanik (at) gmail.com said...

The Time: 1995
The Place: London
The Tunes: Exit Planet Dust.

The Result?

A broken ceiling for our downstairs neighbour. (Sorry, Mr Perkins.)

Oh yes.

Must say their sound has listed to the houseboard side somewhat in the last few years but they still drop a filthy beat.

Cheers

The Daily Growl said...

Yeah, I must check out we are the night sometime. I really enjoyed their Glastonbury set last year (on TV). Though I can't believe that it's better than Sound of Silver!