Dynamic 12-Inch :: Trevor Horn – Part 1

trevor horn today

Image above provided by http://www.recordproduction.com/

Who is Trevor Horn?…

This is Trevor Horn… this is trevor horn
He’s the guy who produced and performed “Video Killed The Radio Star” world-wide smash-hit track. And he’s collecting millions of dollars of royalties from it. the buggles, the age of plastic
Who else is seen in that video (Killed The Radio Star) is no other than Hanz Zimmer. hanz zimmer in video killer the radio star
Hans is Academy Award winner and one of Hollywood’s best soundtrack composers for movies such as: Rain Main, Lion King, Bee Movie, Black Rain, Da Vinci Code, and the list goes on an on IMDB.com credentials. The fucker has an amazing personal studio. hanz zimmer in his studio

Let’s forget about Hans! I just wanted to show you the connection between him and Trevor Horn. Why is Trevor more special?

After The Buggles, Trevor Horn became to be one of the world’s best and most successful music producers of all time:

  • Dollar
  • ABC
  • Malcolm McLaren (Duch Rock album, “Two Buffalo Girls”, etc)
  • YES (Owner Of The Lonely Heart)
  • Africa Bambaataa
  • Grace Jones
  • Pet Shop Boys
  • Simple Minds
  • Paul McCartney
  • Seal
  • Lomax
  • Mike Oldfield
  • Tom Jones
  • Art Of Noise
  • Genesis
  • Lisa Stansfield
  • and more

What made Trevor Horn’s productions stand out was his unique and genius production techniques and the heavy use of state-of-the-art pro-audio gear, which made him become the torch-bearer for the kind of technology-led pop music which was hip and incredibly disciplined. Horn was influenced by Giorgio Moroder (for his distinctive sound) and Kraftwerk (The Man Machine album, for its non-use of traditional instruments). Horn rented the same modular synth which Giorgio used on all his records but found it very difficult to use.

Around 1980, along with Peter Gabriel, Trevor bought the very first digital sampler/workstation which was revolutionary at the time: Fairlight CMi. The Fairlight machine took over Horn’s life and rewarded him with the creation of a sound that had never been heard before. “There were landmark moments – like making the otherworldly backing vocals on Give Me Back My Heart by the Art of Noise out of a sample – that were mind-blowing. It was the birth of digital recording.”

Sampling laws had not yet been invented, and Horn stuck a skull and crossbones flag over the Fairlight to promote the image of being a pirate, stealing existing recordings and turning them into something new. He also pioneered the use of the Linn drum machine, which sounded the death knell for live drummers.

Fairlight III CMi sampler, music workstation.

Fairlight III CMi sampler, music workstation.

However, Trevor was one of the originators of the dynamic 12-inch remixes which were the best at the time … and still are the best. Most 12-inch remixes back then were either just extended verions of original songs and/or default disco/DJ arrangments which were too boring to listen to in and of themselves.

Trevor Horn’s 12-inch remixes were uniquely long (anywhere from 8 to 13 minutes in duration) and told stories which took the listeners through long instrumental journeys at the begenning of tracks until the climax is reached (around the 5/6 or 7 minute mark). After the climax, the original or alternate full vocal version of the track takes over from that point on to the end, lasting additional 3.5 to 5 minutes in length. Like a novel, each of Horn’s remixes starts off with the long RISE to hit the CLIMAX at the top. Once climax is reached, the track would SUSTAIN the music with the original/alternate vocal version until it DECAYS and fades out in the end. Mostl importantly, it was the rolling basslines which DRIVE the listener (in the passenger seat) from begenning to end.

trevor horn's 12-inch remix graph

trevor horn’s 12-inch remix graph

Most 12-inch or “remixed” tracks today are nothing more than extended DJ-friendly versions based on or bootlegged from the original sources. They are nowhere nearly produced as good and heavy as Trevor Horn’s past remixes, because they do not tell stories or go through carefully-arranged story-like journeys. They’re just dispensable and expendable pieces of garbage to my ears.

Read this Sound-On-Sound 2005 article on Trevor Horn

Listen to Frankie Goes To Hollywood dynamic 12-inch remixes…

I want you to listen to these tracks carefully all the way through … in front of big, beefy stereo speakers:

Rage Hard (12 Inch)

frankie goes to hollywood - rage hard cover

Frankie Goes To Hollywood – Rage Hard (12 Inch) (mp3)


Two Tribes (Annihilation Mix)

frankie goes to hollywood - two tribes (annihilation mix) cover

Frankie Goes To Hollywood – Two Tribes (Annihilation Mix) (mp3)


Two Tribes (Surrender Mix)

frankie goes to hollywood - two tribes (surrender mix) cover

Frankie Goes To Hollywood – Two Tribes (Surrender Mix) (mp3)


Relax (12 Inch Sex Mix)

frankie goes to hollywood - relax (12 inch sex mix) cover

Frankie Goes To Hollywood – Relax (12 Inch Sex Mix) (mp3)


Welcome To The Pleasure Dome (Original 12 Inch Pleasure Fix Mix)

frankie goes to hollywood - welcome to the pleasure dome (original 12 inch pleasure fix mix) cover

Frankie Goes To Hollywood – Welcome To The Pleasure Dome (Original 12 Inch Pleasure Fix Mix) (mp3)


Read Part-2 of this article …
I Love You Miss Robot :: Trevor Horn – Part 2

Heatstroke Moments: Man Parrish

Man Parrish album cover

Play Man Parrish Tracks…

Man Parrish Tracks…

  • Man Parrish – Hip Hop Bee Bop (Don’t Stop)
  • Man Parrish – In The Beginning
  • Man Parrish – Man Made
  • Man Parrish – Together Again
  • Man Parrish – Hip Hop Bee Bop (Don’t Stop Part 2)
  • Man Parrish – Six Simple Synthesizers
  • Man Parrish – Techno Trax
  • Man Parrish – Street Clap
  • Man Parrish – Heatstroke
  • Man Parrish – Hey There Homeboys
  • Man Parrish – Hey There Homeboys (Dub)
  • Man Parrish – Boogie Down Bronx
  • Man Parrish – Boogie Down Bronx (Dub)
  • Man Parrish – Heatstroke (Club)
  • Man Parrish – Hip Hop Bee Bop (Don’t Stop Remix)
  • Man 2 Man – Action (Dance Floor Action)
  • Man 2 Man – Male Stripper (Original 12-inch 1986)
  • Man 2 Man – Male Stripper (Out Of The Ordinary Techno Mix) (1989)
  • The Information…

    When I first started buying record albums and 12-inch singles in 1977, I was collecting all kinds of pop music such as Gary Numan, Blondie, Boney M, Bee Gees, Grace Jones, Grandmaster Flash, etc., throughout the following decade.

    There were only few handful of electronic musicians and music groups who’ve pioneered electronic music decades prior to the 1980s, such as Vangelis, Jean Michel Jarre, Jean Jacques Perrey, ELP, Tangerine Dream, Kraftwerk and others.

    However, the 1980s decade began with a backlash against disco music, and a movement away from the orchestral arrangements that had characterized much of the electronic music of the 1970s. Music in the 80s was characterized by unheard of electronic sounds accomplished through the use of synthesizers and keyboards, along with drum machines. This made a dramatic change in music. 80s pop music experienced a revolution driven more by technology and consumerism than any resounding political message. It was that new electronic sound from synthesizers, samplers and drum machines, enhanced with unprecedented leap forward towards advanced and new production techniques of the time, where both analog and new digital domains fused together as one.

    Fairlight III CMi sampler, music workstation.

    Fairlight III CMi sampler, music workstation.

    Roland MC-202, the ultimate analog bass machine ... blows away TR-303!

    Roland MC-202, the ultimate analog bass machine ... blows away TR-303!

    Linn 9000 digital sampling drum machine and 64-midi channel sequencer.

    Linn 9000 digital sampling drum machine and 64-midi channel sequencer.

    By 1982, I was already tired of the old disco sound but hip to the new “rap” genre (which were heavily produced by drum machines and synths) and in love with all kinds of electronic-pop and electric-funk styles. However I was still hungry for something more but wasn’t quite sure what it was. Something was in the air … or ON THE AIR for sure.

    After Malcolm McLaren’s release of Buffalo Gals in late-1982, I knew something bigger was coming along. 1983 saw the big shift in electronic dance music taking place. In Europe (especially Germany, England and Italy), electronic dance music was essentially electric-disco — 4/4 drum beats + 1/8th note basslines — such as New Order’s Blue Monday.

    However, in New York, electric-disco became known as “high energy” with a twist: a new sub-genre was emerging as “electro” which was a blend of hiphop beats with electronic dance arrangements.

    Examples of electro music releases were:

    • Freeez – “I.O.U.”
    • Man Parrish – “Hip Hop be Bop” (listen to track in flash music player above)
    • Man Parrish – “Heatstroke” (listen to track in flash music player above)
    • Man Parrish – “Boogie Down Bronx” (listen to track in flash music player above)
    • Mantornix – “Needle To The Groove”

    I was enrolled in a boarding-school back then in England and was still listening to New Order and Grandmaster Flash on the Walkman. There was this fuckin’ Jamaican kid in my dormitory — David Yakabu. One day, David ran up to me and said, “Hey mon! Chek dis Mon Pah-rish wikkidest sound!” I put on the heaphones, he pressed play, and my socks were blown off my feet.

    I was listening to Man Parrish for the first time ……… “Hip Hop Be Bop” and “Heatstroke.”
    HOLY CRAP – THIS SHIT IS FIERCE !! — was my impression.
    I followed and bought every release by Man Parrish.

    Man Parrish links…

    Read  below, Sean Cooper’s Review of Man Parrish…

    Link to original source.

    MAN PARRISH REVIEW by – Sean Cooper, All Music Guide

    This ground breaking 1983 Dance-Urban Synthesizer album is considered by many, to be a DANCE CLASSIC and a MUST HAVE in any serious collection. Man Parrish is said to have coined the phrase “Hip Hop” from this classic, electronic dance record.

    Although he produced only a handful of tracks of renown and disappeared into obscurity almost as quickly as he had emerged from it, Manny ( Man ) Parrish is nonetheless one of the most important and influential figures in American electronic dance music. Helping to lay the foundation of electro, hip-hop, freestyle, and techno, as well as the dozens of subgenres to splinter off from those, Parrish introduced the aesthetic of European electronic pop to the American club scene by combining the plugged-in disco-funk of Giorgio Moroder and the man-machine music of Kraftwerk with the beefed-up rhythms and cut’n'mix approach of nascent hip-hop. As a result, tracks like “Hip-Hop Be Bop (Don’t Stop)” and “Boogie Down Bronx” were period-defining works that provided the basic genetic material for everyone from Run-DMC and the Beastie Boys to Autechre and Andrea Parker — and they remain undisputed classics of early hip-hop and electro to this day. A native New Yorker, Parrish was a member of the extended family of glam-chasers and freakazoids that converged nightly on Andy Warhol’s Studio 54 club. His nickname, Man, first appeared in Warhol’s Interview magazine, and his early live shows at Bronx hip-hop clubs were spectacles of lights, glitter, and pyrotechnics that drew as much from the Warhol mystique as from the Cold Crush Brothers.

    Influenced by the electronic experiments of his good friend and co – writer Klaus Nomi and Brian Eno as well as by Kraftwerk, Parrish together with “Cool” Raul Rodriguez recorded their best-known work in a tiny studio sometimes shared with Afrika Baambaata, whose own sessions with Arthur Baker and John Robie produced a number of classics equal to Parrish’s own, including “Wildstyle, ” “Looking for the Perfect Beat, ” and the infamous “Planet Rock.” What distinguished “Hip-Hop Be Bop, ” however, was its lack of vocals and the extremely wide spectrum of popularity it gained in the club scene, from ghetto breakdance halls to uptown clubs like Danceteria and the Funhouse. After he discovered a pirated copy of his music being played by a local DJ at theinfamous “Anvil” club ( NYC ), Parrish found his way to the offices of the Importe label (a subsidiary of popular dance imprint Sugarscoop and Disconet DJ mixing service), which whom he inked his first deal. He released his self-titled LP shortly after, and the album went on to sell over 3 million copies worldwide. He was signed to Electra Records and managed by David Bowie’s notorious manager Tony De Fries and the infamous Main Man Ltd management team. Tony De Fries had managed careers of David Bowie, New York Dolls, Mott the Hoople, Mick Ronson and Dana Gillespie to name a few.

    Following a period of burn-out that followed, Parrish recorded and remixed tracks for Michael Jackson, Boy George, Gloria Gaynor, and Hi-NRG group Man2Man, among others, and served as manager for the Village People and Crystal Water to name a few. While Parrish’s subsequent material has achieved nowhere near the success or creative pitch of his earlier work, he continues to record from his brooklyn studio and is a frequent DJ at New York’s eclectic night spots and SM clubs. His Sunday Underground Party “Sperm” at the “Cock Bar” on New Yorks lower east side, is notorious, to say the least ! He is main DJ and co founder for a circut party called “Hustlerball” which has parties in many cities worldwide. He also has several adult websites and online businesses which keep him busy as a webmaster, and “jack of all trades”. His second LP, DreamTime, appeared on Strictly Rhythm in 1997.

    - Sean Cooper, All Music Guide

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