Saturday, May 09, 2009


On another blog, I was recently called the extremely "creative" appelation, "Obamarobot" because I didn't hate Obama. I suppose it's more fuun to be an Obamarobot than a Cheneyroid or a Limbogre. At least I have hope.
All this robot talk made me want to hear the 1963 hit by the Tornados, ROBOTS!
Here is the original promotional video, years ahead of its time conceptually and musically. Nobody would go where Joe Meek had gone until the advent of DEVO in the late 70's!
The Tornados were a British rock instrumental group best known for their huge international hit, Telstar. The real brains of course, was the tragically bizarrely brilliant Joe Meek who wrote and produced the music.
Meek was totally unique, he invented his own techniques of dubbing individually recorded parts, compressing and clipping sound. In a way he was the complete opposite of Phil Spector, who recorded everything at once, even doubling instrument parts live to achieve his wall of sound.
Meeks was able to produce a more precise, but still mamouth pop sound. A very good example was perhaps his last big international hit, The Honeycombs, Have I The Right?
Meeks had a brief career with a tragic end. He was in his late 30's and his pop empire was beginning to dissolve. He was a lone gay man with a history of depression and a very dark side. In 1967, in an insane act, he killed his land lady and then himself with a shotgun.
We still have his legacy of absurdly brilliant futuristic pop to remember his genius with.

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