Friday, 11 March 2011

35: Part-T-One (vs. INXS), “I’m So Crazy” (no.19, 2001)

Not so much a pop song as a sustained philosophical assault upon the very idea of language. Turning their attentions to INXS’s 1983 song “Just Keep Walking” - an inoffensive slab of Aussie AOR that only really wakes up around the chorus - two Italian DJs (let’s call them the Umberto Ecos of the club scene) decided to reject standard operating procedure. Rather than cheekily pinch riffs and samples, they would break their source’s lyrics down to their constituent syllables, then strap each of those with gelignite, just to see what happened. Stand well back.

At a time of unprecedented blandness in dance music - with the soporific dance-prog of trance just giving way to the charmless lo-fi gurning of two-step garage - “I’m So Crazy” arrived from nowhere as one of the most wholesale, violent and violently dynamic deconstructions of a pre-existing recording ever pressed to vinyl and stacked on the shelves of Woolworths; fragments of it would stick in my head all day like shrapnel. Punk house, they called it; they could have called it Dadaist house, or postmodern house, or - given the year of its release - terrorist house: in late 2001, this was about as sane, and as battily thrilling, as pop culture got.

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