History will only repeat itself once more.
November 2, 2007 1:53 PM   Subscribe

Stereolab origins parts 1, 2, 3, and 4

It's youtubeishness, but I thought this was a really interesting way to show the influences of a band, especially Stereolab who celebrated their influences almost as much as they celebrated old synths. We're also coming up on the anniversary of the death of Mary Hansen in 2002
posted by sleepy pete (26 comments total) 34 users marked this as a favorite
Not bad.
posted by anazgnos at 1:58 PM on November 2, 2007

For the next volume, it should be noted that "Freestyle Dumpling" is a close cousin of The Fall's "Slags Slates Etc."
posted by porn in the woods at 2:04 PM on November 2, 2007

porn in the woods, there's a few that I didn't completely agree with ("Hallogallo" by Neu! is "Exploding Head Movie" by Stereolab as far as melody, not "Jenny Ondioline," which has essentially the same rhythm, and I don't think the Plastic Ono Band had much to do with Stereolab, although I understand why they're there), but I think you're right.
posted by sleepy pete at 2:22 PM on November 2, 2007

It's a bit depressing someone showing you how the magic tricks were done......
posted by sgt.serenity at 2:34 PM on November 2, 2007


youtuberance, please.

c'mon, I'm trying to start a meme here, people.
posted by dersins at 3:09 PM on November 2, 2007

No way! Popular music is vaguely similar to other popular music?!
posted by mubba at 4:05 PM on November 2, 2007

La première link est morte.
posted by TheNewWazoo at 4:56 PM on November 2, 2007

Part one seems to have been removed.
posted by Brian B. at 4:59 PM on November 2, 2007

Good gracious, mubba, Sun Ra is popular where you live? And The Silver Apples? Snapper? The kids all still remember The Archies and The Association there?

Stereolab is popular where you live?

You must reside in Chillville, boasting the largest per capita consumption of sorbet and bongo drums in the world, where the girls all go by in striped shirts waving coolly from Vespas and the men all cock an ironic but affable eyebrow as you pass. All the doorbells go la la la la la, am I correct? And the car alarms just whisper "Hey, man, I'm still making payments."

Put in a good word for me with Mayor Gainsbourg, would you?
posted by melissa may at 5:40 PM on November 2, 2007 [18 favorites]

Part 1 is here.

The person removed it and put it back up. I hope that doesn't happen to all of them.
posted by sleepy pete at 5:44 PM on November 2, 2007

Ono's Mindtrain is pretty much exactly copied, as I recall. Can't remember what Stereolab titled it, but yeah, that's the track.

I love me some old Stereolab, but it really ticks me off that they're trying to pass off other people's stuff as their own. The internet really showed this up in a lot of bands (Spacemen 3 are another offender), and that's one more value to it, I suppose...you can't rework rare vinyl & pass it off as your creation anymore, too many people listening, too many memories.
posted by stinkycheese at 5:46 PM on November 2, 2007

Fixed the link to part 1. Neat stuff.
posted by cortex at 5:57 PM on November 2, 2007

thanks, this is great. love stereolab... but i'm always bummed that Mary Hansen was killed back in 2002.
posted by joeblough at 6:01 PM on November 2, 2007

pretty cool - but it seems like Neu should have been mentioned sooner! Also, where can I find more Krysztof Komeda?
posted by space2k at 6:20 PM on November 2, 2007

Seek: "Flourescenses" EP, Switched On comps, Mars Audiac Quintet, Emperor Tomato Ketchup

Destroy: Cobra and Phases Group Play Voltage in the Milky Night, The First of the Microbe Hunters EP
posted by porn in the woods at 6:36 PM on November 2, 2007

It's Metronomic Underground that rips off Mindtrain (from the Plastic Ono Band's freakazoid double LP Fly). A lot of these are kinda hmm maybe, but that one is particularly shameful.
posted by stinkycheese at 6:46 PM on November 2, 2007

This is just more proof that Stereolab is way hipper than you'll ever be.
posted by mike_bling at 9:48 PM on November 2, 2007

True story: My wife an I got married in an old club in St Kilda in Melbourne. As the night wore on, there were more an more people there whom we didn't know - friends of friends and so on. I was approached by some English guy at some point who apologised for gatecrashing our wedding. I asked him who he was, he told me, and I asked him what he was doing in Australia. 'Oh, my band are touring at the moment'. Which band I asked? 'Stereolab. Have you heard of them?'. Lovely guy. I think we had the whole band there at one point. No-one had any idea who they were.
posted by tim_in_oz at 9:54 PM on November 2, 2007 [1 favorite]

Wow, nice. A real education for me. I had no idea one of my all time favorite bands was influenced by the Archies and bands I've never heard of of before.
Some smart programmer needs to create a spinning rhizome jukebox of musical influences so that I could waste my days away.
posted by PHINC at 9:16 AM on November 3, 2007

a compliment to the influences would be the band to whom tim gane (and, very late, laetitia sadier) belonged to -- mccarthy. both bands took different approaches to their music, but both were (are) quite political.
posted by moz at 11:30 AM on November 3, 2007

These are clever comparisons but isn't it post hoc to draw a conclusion? Besides, the more you pay attention to these things, the more you find out that practically everything sounds like something else.
posted by Rich Smorgasbord at 7:58 PM on November 3, 2007

I remember an interview on Morning Becomes Eclectic back in 1996 when they were touring to support Emperor Tomato Ketchup. Where they were explaining their sound to Nick Harcourt. They take a riff from say Charles Mingus, and play it and layer other riffs over the top of it...I remember Nick having quite a bit of trouble understanding this...

So i don't think they were ever trying to give the impression that they had 'created' these' riffs, they just compiled them differently.

One of my favorite bands ever, excellent post.
posted by schyler523 at 2:36 PM on November 4, 2007

By Nick Harcourt, i meant Chris Douridas...oops.
posted by schyler523 at 2:38 PM on November 4, 2007

schyler523, thanks for saying that. I was going to, but I didn't want to moderate the thread.

There isn't a lot of art that doesn't have an antecedent somewhere (modernism, and post-, relishes it; how many more years will Chuck Berry songs be remade?). With Stereolab, they were very forthcoming about their influences. The beauty of it all, and with others who do this, is that they took the ideas of others and used them to create their own pieces. Was it Gramsci or Althusser who theorized that this was the only way to create art (it's been years and I can't look it up right now since I'm at work). Oh well, I'll look it up later since I don't think anyone's reading this still.

Also, it looks like part 5 is up (although I'm getting a weird message at work so it won't play correctly).
posted by sleepy pete at 8:45 AM on November 5, 2007

The Jean Michel Jarre bit is utterly implausible, as are many of the others. Also, have you noticed (for older Stereolab at least) how much better they are than their purported influences?
posted by imperium at 3:27 PM on November 5, 2007

With Stereolab, they were very forthcoming about their influences.

I'm sorry, but this just isn't true. Or at least wasn't true. They credit themselves for stuff they are really very obviously ripping off. They may discuss these "influences" in interviews or whathaveyou, but the acid test is really the album credits, and any proper accreditation there is noteable only by its absence.

That said, some of the examples in the youtube clips are, admittedly, way off.
posted by stinkycheese at 10:27 AM on November 7, 2007

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