Wednesday, November 05, 2008

beautiful freak to beautiful freak

Hands up everybody who remembers the Green Monkey Music Project.

Remember? They were those awesome interactive playlists that Splotchy used to mastermind? I believe I even reached the exalted level of GMMP Master, which is sort of like being a Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtle, only cooler.

Well, they are being resurrected. Beth and Splotchy have teamed up to host the first new GMMP in some time, the Six Musical Degrees edition. Beth developed the rules (connect six musicians, or songs or covers) and Splotchy collected all the songs from all the participants and made one mother of a playlist, available for your listening pleasure. You can download all the songs here.

Mine is called From Bjork to Yorke. It's no secret that I love both of these awesome freaks, and that they have mutual admiration for each other. They have worked together in the past, many years ago on the Dancer in the Dark soundtrack and again recently on Nattura, for which Thom sang backup from a hotel room in Germany while Bjork recorded the rest of the song from her hotel room in (I think) Japan. Proceeds from the song will help the Nattura organization provide seed money to environmentally sound Icelandic companies as alternatives to planned aluminum factories.

Of course one degree of removal does not a list make, so in a more circuitous route to connect the awesomeness of Bjork to the awesomeness of Thom Yorke, here are Bad Tempered Zombie's Six Degrees of Bjork to Yorke:

1. Human Behaviour - Bjork
- one of my favourite Bjork offerings, and certainly among her more accessible songs, this features some incredible rhythms and that wonderfully other-worldly voice.
"There's definitely definitely definitely no logic to human behaviour"

2. Human Behaviour - the Decemberists
- I have to thank my friend, the lovely and talented John Mutford, for not only alerting me to the existence of this cover, but for delivering it to my grateful ears. Colin Meloy sings Bjork -
how perfectly surreal is that?

3. National Hum - the Constantines
- Canada's hardest working and hardest rocking band (cliched, but true) played the Sasquatch Festival in beautiful Washington state (one of my favourite places) on the same bill as the Decemberists in 2006.

4. Chorus of Wolves - Woodpigeon
- in an inspired billing of opposites complementing each other, local heroes Woodpigeon, with their swooningly gorgeous orchestral harmonies, shared the stage with the Constantines at the inaugural Sled Island Festival in 2007. And Sled Island instantly cemented its reputation as the indie festival we have all been waiting for.

5. While You Wait for the Others - Grizzly Bear
- year two of the Sled Island festival boasted musical pairings just as inspired as in the inaugural year. In 2008, both Grizzly Bear and Woodpigeon crammed the tiny stage at Central United church for a night that was so sublime it was almost spiritual. I'd start going to church if it was always like this.

6. Talk Show Host - Radiohead
- in the initial North American leg of 2008's concert tour of the year, Grizzly Bear opened for Radiohead. We saw Liars as openers, and they were really enjoyable, but Grizzly Bear would have added a completely different flavour to the evening.

- I have been asked about my favourite Radiohead song before, and I cannot give a definitive answer. Come on, people, that's like asking me to name my favourite child! Okay, that would actually be easy, since I have but one. But Talk Show Host has been falling into favourite territory for quite a while now, and shows no signs of loosening its grip on my heart.
"You want me, fucking come on and break the door down".

I would urge you to not only pick up some great new songs over at Splotchy's, but also to check out the Six Degrees rationale of the other participants. They are much more imaginative than my "I saw this band play with this other band" strictly linear approach.

I never said I was an abstract thinker.


Splotchy said...

Nicely done, Barbara!

I hope to see a future GMMP mix helmed by you!

Allison said...

Nice list! I shall have to check out the others...and may have to play along.

This also reminded me I still have a tag of yours to complete. So many things in blogland to keep one busy. :)

BeckEye said...

Can you now connect Bjork and Yorke to Mork from Ork?

Barbara Bruederlin said...

Thanks Splotchy, I think that can definitely be arranged. I will send you some ideas.

It can become a full-time endeavour if you allow it, Al, and it is soooo easy to allow it.
I'd love to see your list!

Of course I can, Beckeye, they are all dorks from Cork who raise storks and eat pork with a fork (except Bjork, who uses a spork). And they listen to Quirks and Quorks on CBC radio.

mister anchovy said...

I have a fairly low tolerence setting on the Bjorkometer. I'm not sure what it is that grates the wrong way with me. I should like her work because it's inventive and well crafted and quirky, but I don't. I think it's kind of like the irrational fear of cheesecake that I harboured for years. I got over that one. Maybe I can overcome Bjorkophobia one day too. Who knows.

John Mutford said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
John Mutford said...

The Bjork to Mork from Ork connection is fine, but aren't we supposed to rhyme her name with "work"? (I know. I don't either. But I think Jian Gomeshi told me that once.)

glassmeow said...

I'm embarrassed to be from Portland and not known that The Decemberists ever covered Bjork. Thanks for that - I love it!

mellowlee said...

I love your Bjork to Yorke mix! Yays for the return of Green Monkey Music Project! :O)

Bridget Jones said...

I'm with Mr Anchovy up there, which is kind of amazing. NOt that MR. A and I disagree, but because you and I Barb, almost always agree.

It's that Bjork big bird thing (dress). Still have nightmares about it...

Barbara Bruederlin said...

I hope that someday you can sit down in a cafe with Bjork somewhere and share a nice piece of cheescake, Mr Anchovy. That is my dream.

Acch! What does Jian Ghomeshi know? Um, probably quite a lot, actually. I'm still pronouncing my way, John, at least until Thom tells me otherwise.

Hi, Glassmeow, welcome! I just learned it quite recently myself. Do you ever run into Colin Meloy at the grocery store? I'll bet he lets people cut in line.

It's good to see the GMMP back, isn't it, Mel. Hope you are having a great Friday.

That swan dress will live in infamy, Bridget. But she sort of pulled it off!

Dale said...

Yesterday, I spent a good deal of my transit time listening to Bjork's track Earth Intruders again and again. Nice linkages and it's truly fantastic that Splotchy's pet is back up and making the rounds. It's a hit!

Dale said...

Just finished listening to yours and loved it Barbara and now I'm on to Beckeye's! Good times!

Barbara Bruederlin said...

Thanks Dale! I think you will agree that my list kicks Beckeye's list's ass. But don't tell her or she'll kill me.

glassmeow said...

Hi back! :)

I never run into Colin Meloy at the grocery store, I think he lives in SE Portland and I live in NE/nearly North Portland "NoPo", but I have friends who know him well.