Monday, January 12, 2009

Pump Up the Volume

When I was in high school I had a bit of a crush on Christian Slater.
I didn't care that he was a Jack Nicholson wanna be. I just thought he was hot.

Recently I revisted the movie "Pump up the Volume" because I thought it would be a little nostalgic journey.

I can honestly say that it hasn't really stood the test of time. The acting is poor, the teen angst storyline has been done a zillion times and it is pretty implausible.

For those of you who have never seen the film it is about a teenager who moves to Arizona and has zero friends. He has a short wave radio set which he uses to become his night time alter ego -pirate radio DJ Happy Harry Hard On.

The one thing that has stood the test of time is the soundtrack.

Some tracks and artists from the film include:

"Kick Out The Jams"
Performed by Bad Brains with Henry Rollins

"Wave of Mutilation (U.K. Surf)"
Performed by The Pixies

"Titanium Expose"
Performed by Sonic Youth

"Everybody Knows"
Performed by Leonard Cohen
Also performed by Concrete Blonde

Performed by The Beastie Boys
(I give this movie props for including the Beastie Boys track "Scenario" as it was an unreleased track until it appeared in 1998 on a bootleg called "Original III".
I would feature this track if I could find a decent recording of it. If anyone is out there who has this track drop me a line.)

"Freedom of Speech"
Performed by Above The Law

Performed by Soundgarden

"Tale O' The Twister"
Performed by Chagall Guevara

"Dad, I'm in Jail"
Performed by Was Not Was

I have a number of favourites from the soundtrack.

One is Leonard Cohen's "Everybody Knows" which is currently being used in Australia in a cancer council commercial. It's really enjoyable listening to Leonard while images of clogged arteries being squeezed are flashed on your TV :( (Just as an aside am I the only person who hates these ads?).

So here is the track minus the clogged arteries

"Freedom of Speech" from Above the Law is another track I love.

"Now what's really known as a radio cut?

When you can's say (shit) and you can't say (fuck)

I really think you wanna hear it

But the radio stations, you see, they still gonna fear it
Yo, I thought this country was based upon freedom of speech

Freedom of press, freedom of your own religion

To make your own decision, now that's baloney

Cause if I gotta play by your rules, I'm bein phoney
Yo, I got to cater to this person or that person

I got to rhyme for the white or the black person?

Why can't it all be equal?
Music is a universal language for all people."

The last track I want to mention is "Wave of Mutilation" by the Pixies.
I recently saw Frank Black (lead singer of the Pixies) boasting live on stage that he was one of the first people to mention "El Nino" in a song.
Well Frank, Flock of Seagulls mentioned the Aurora Borealis in one of their tracks and they didn't bang on about it :)

Regardless, it is a great track. Take a look

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