Wednesday, February 25, 2009

(Youtube Events Archive No 1)

hereby archives it's 1st patch of Youtube Events to make room for some new audio-visual sparkle on the old sidebar. So take a trip down memory lane, rock out and relive the glitter! Also - this makes for an opportunity to throw in an opinion or few on the matter! How good was "Heartbeats"? Was it very, very, very good or just really, really good? Did you enjoy the naked ladies of "My Love"? What about Jacque Brel? Did he rock your world or what? And lastly - was "Allein Allein" an exquisite guilty pleasure or just a cringe-worthy episode, best forgotten?)


In what is sure to be a controversial move, ZA/UM now endorses a piece of contemporary disco-pop. You've no doubt heard this, pumping on the old FM, on your way to work, or in the aisles of the friendly neighborhood supermarket. So why'd you have to hear it on ZA/UM as well?
Polarkreis were a bunch of nobodies, from Dresden, Germany, doomed to make an appearance or few on VIVA and that would've been it. Until they came up with this piece of epic power-pop on their second LP and some commercially savvy people at Universal music took note.
Not only, they piled out what looks like well over a million euros for the video (quite exceptional nowadays). It's an otherwise ordinary landscape/performance video, except for the fact, that it's shot in the Alps and oh boy, do the Alps look epic in this! It's a sort of remake of Rammstein's "Ohne Dich", as well, but with gayish disco-poppers instead of Nazi alpinists. Where it trumps "Ohne Dich" is in the sheer quality of it's camerawork.
The song itself moves along the same lines - adding a bit of euro to a worn out formula and thus reinvigorating it. The chorus goes "Allein Allein / Wir Sind Allein", which is, of course, "alone, alone /we are alone". The rest of the lyrics, in a clever twist, are in English (and not utterly pointless either). But it's the idea of inserting a German line into an epic chorus that got our attention. And yes, "Allein" is a pretty word indeed.
Music-wise this is a cross between ATB and The Killers, all very teutonic, but with a twist of international gloss. The rather cheesy, but affectionate epics also bring to mind Sonique, that forgotten episode in British FM disco. Oh! And the production is supernatural in it's quality. The massive chorus is pretty much self-explanatory, so are the shameless synth-strings. And although the singer looks like he'll soon come down with that persistent cough and those itchy, orange things on the neck (it's because of the open-collar sweater - that always gives off an HIV vibe) in "Allein Allein's" case, this comes off as a strength. Doomed teutonic homosexuals walking the Alps while a one-hit wonder, power-disco number propels them into epic lonelyness - it's quite ´09 indeed.


Today is as good a day as any to pose the following question: "France - what happened to you?" Was it the failure of the revolution of ´68 that broke your spirit, or was it Euro Disneyland? It was Euro Disneyland, wasn't it? The real proverbial nail in the coffin... Whatever the case, it has resulted in French students marching the streets, with slogans like: "slightly worried about my future employment perspectives", rather than the famous Situationist wit.
An even better illustration comes in the form of one, Jacques Brel. There is nothing quite like the following, furious live delivery of "Amsterdam" to point out some obvious differences between you guys back then - and you guys now.
The chanson starts off with this creeping accordion accompanying Jacque, as he completely fails to pretend this will not become a musical approximation of a firestorm; no doubt starting at the ports, at night, so the flames can reflect on the pitch black water, and then - moving on to devour the entire city. Whirls of piano set in as monsieur Brel laments the whores, the sailors, the whiskey and the rotten fish heads; all the while he's doing this fucking insane thing with his body, a fragmented, sped up swing in the song's rhythm. Consider this is a performance of the highest caliber, put the video on full screen, crank it up, and then - in the end - notice the crowd joining in on what becomes perhaps the ultimate gesture - stopping the song in full swing as if it would otherwise threaten to explode and kill everyone in the room.



Here at ZA/UM we plan to keep our Youtube content to the bare minimal. After diving to the very depths of Youtube, for days on end, we retrieve only the shiniest of pearls, and then we deliberate. For a long, long time. Picture a round table, not much unlike the Pentagon war-room from Dr. Strangelove. Now imagine the minds of ZA/UM feverously debating the pros and cons of the following video: "The Knife - Heartbeats (live)" Does it live up to our standards of audio engineering? Does it represent a fantastic group in it's prime? We do not wish to post something that might not absolutely blow you away. So we only post the things we feel we must share - like ecstasy tablets, at a party, when you know you probably shouldn't, but you still hand them around the room because they're just that good. You should know - you just did four!
So here is "Heartbeats", a song by Swedish group The Knife, off their 2004 album "Deep Cuts". It's a live recording, of high audio quality, from Göteborg, 2006. And it's gorgeous. Crank this beast of a number up real hard before you press that button there. And then notice, how this meisterwerk of temporary love gains momentum. It's a slow burner, sure, but it's one of terrible resolve, set out to strain you across it's colorful, fluorescent landscape from the beginning on. An effect, that becomes fully apparant as Karin Dreijer's joyous hysterics reach breaking point on the song's penultimate chorus. Notice the background of synths swell up, all dry and swirling. And the lyrics mirror this perfectly - "to count on hands from above / to lean on / would not be good enogh / for me, no" This is surely one of those "songs about drugs" as well, with lines like "under the influence / we had divine sense / mind is a razorblade", but when done this well, it just illustrates the similarities between those two - music and medicine. LET THERE BE LOVE, A FUCKING PILLAR OF IT, A FLASHING PILLAR OF LOVE THAT REACHES UP TO THE SKY.


Just to show how much you meen to me, and also, to make it painfully clear that here, at ZA/UM, we are not indie nerds, voila! Justin Timberlake's "My Love", remixed by that disgusting big-beat, trance DJ, Paul Oakenfold. Let it be known that this particular remix of this particular song has taken on anthemic qualities at ZA/UM, or as Martin Luiga puts it: "It's not our anthem, man! There is no such thing as the ZA/UM anthem, that would be embarrassing... it sure does lighten up the mood, though!"
This massive, dumb, biohazard-class infectious remix of Justin Timberlake's otherwise lesser '07 single release boasts what one, extremely reliable Youtube commentary believes to be "the most phattest beat". In addition to this "most phattest beat" "My Love" also has incredible lyrics! (A discovery some reviewers might not agree with.) They are in fact so insencere,
so cliched (I can see us holding hands / walking on the beach / our toes in the sand) so exaggerated, (if I wrote you a symphony!!!) and delivered with such a nasal falsetto, that something reaches breaking point and these lyrics, they turn inside out, becoming a sincerely credible sentiment on everlasting love and devotion. Especially in this, remixed version. Because everlasting love and devotion is just as dumb, massive and disgustingly big-beat as "My Love".
It is also by no accident, that the following video features half-naked chicas, in bikinis, spreading their legs as the color scheme flashes from pink to acid green. That goes to show, that we at ZA/UM are firmly footed in the soul of the proletariat.


  1. Selle esimese kohta ütleb et "dieses Video ist nicht available in your country"

  2. Fuckwod fucktardsson fuckady fuckburg, kuidas ma ei kannata seda nahhuijaa maadepõlist video-available asja. Olete tähele pannud, kuidas mingi värdjalik natsiooni idee on internetti sisse sõitmas? Kuidas mingid "For Canada Only" tasuta passimisise leheküljed tekivad, või "For The States Only" nagu HULU... Nilbe ühesõnaga.
    Ma ei jaksa ka ümberarhiveerida, see on naljakas lugu ühesõnaga, kirjuta Youtube´i sisse ja vaata ära.