This post started off as being the next in my Late Night Stargazing thread, but as I was writing it, it struck me it would be much better served resurrecting another old thread.
I think we’ll start by breaking this one down into it’s composite parts.
Firstly, the main vocal part of the tune is provided by none other than Miss Nina Simone, the song lifted from her ground-breaking 1961 album “Forbidden Fruit”:
Nina Simone – Rags And Old Iron
Next, the bass line is stolen from this bunch of wonderful nerdos:
Devo – Mongoloid
In the words of a now disgraced and imprisoned antipodean, can you tell what it is yet?
Layo & Bushwacka! – Love Story (Original Version)
Anyone who thinks DJs, remixers, call them what you will are not talented musicians in their own right need to have a word with themselves. It takes a very special creative mind to hear a Nina Simone record and think “You know what that needs? A bit of Devo, that’s what!” and then to pull it off with such aplomb. Chapeau, Monsieur Layo et ton ami Monsieur Bushwacka! (No idea where the French accent has come from, by the way. I seem to have come over all ‘Allo! ‘Allo!. Their real names are Layo (no, really) and Matthew, which doesn’t really have the same impact, even if you do add an exclamation mark after it.)
Anyway, released in 2002, “Love Story” takes me right back to a club in Cardiff that me and my buddies used to frequent. Now closed, due, I think, to some alleged misdemeanour over fire regulations, The Emporium to my mind was the best club in the city. Not especially big, but just dark and dingy enough that you could get lost in it – or lose yourself in it, if you prefer – it was spread over two floors and three rooms; as you entered there was a funky little bar, which by the end of the night had inevitably turned into a chill-out area; in the corner was a spiral staircase leading up to The Attic, where things usually got a little harder and faster, across to the opposite staircase, stopping only to warn those on the way up to “Mind The Step” (right at the top there was one step which was slightly higher than the others, and it was a rare event when you walked up or down it that you didn’t see someone trip over it and end up spread-eagled on the floor outside the Ladies – not a good look), and into the main room.
The great thing about the main room – well, one of the many great things about the main room – in The Emporium was that it had a sprung wooden floor (the club itself was situated above a row of shops, so we’re actually on the first floor now) so that when the bass kicked in on any particular tune you could really feel it. Often the combination of that and the crowd going mental meant that you were, literally, bouncing, almost to the point where you began to fear the floor would give way and we’d all be hurtled down into the shop below. At which point you’d realise you were heading into a paranoia hole and decide now was probably a good time to pop another pill, sniff another popper, or whatever your stimulant of choice was. After all, they’d never survive the fall, would they? Best make the most of them now, eh?
“Love Story” was most definitely one of those tunes, especially if the DJ knew to crank the bass up just as it kicks back in at the 05:40 mark.
A year later, “Love Story” took on a whole new lease of life, when Tim Deluxe did one of them there mash-up things, taking this:
Kings of Tomorrow (feat. Julie McKnight) – Finally
and added it to “Love Story” making this:
Layo & Bushwacka! – Love Story vs Finally
Much as I love that version, it’s the original that does it for me every time.
Guess I’d better go and dig something out for the Late Night Stargazing thread then, hadn’t I?