KLF - did they rock you?

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In their song "3am Eternal" the KLF claim that they "are gonna rock you". The question is, do/did they?

If you ask me, there isn't nearly enough Africa in their sequenced drum patterns and my personal response would have to be "Well, ever so nice of you to ask, but no you don't/didn't rock me in the slightest as a matter of fact". Am I getting old?

Chris, Friday, 22 February 2002 01:00 (nineteen years ago) link

No, but they excited and thrilled me. Is that enough?

Robin Carmody, Saturday, 23 February 2002 01:00 (nineteen years ago) link

geez, I was totally thinking about asking about the KLF on ILM today.

I think you are taking the KLF a little too seriously. They were a couple geezers up for a laugh, and they certainly had one. I thought their music was alright, but 1987(WHAT THE FUCK IS GOING ON) is an absolutely brilliant album. It is rare as hens teeth as it was only on the shelves for about a day before it was pulled due to copyright violations. A buddy of mine has a vinyl copy and it is absolute madness. Think of rabidly plunderphonic hip-hop as done by the beastie boys if a. they had not tried to sound even remotely influenced by NYC black culture, b. they were hell bent on career suicide, and c. if they had absolutely no flow.

It sounds like it would be god awful, but it is so intentionally bad and purposely clever that is breaks through into genius.

I always thought their writing was more interesting than their music. Check The KLF's Guide To Having a #1 Hit Single The Easy Way, also The White Room Script, and the story about spending 24 hours continously driving on the M03. Simultainously hysterical and insightful. They knew exactly what they were doing.

mt, Saturday, 23 February 2002 01:00 (nineteen years ago) link

I had a copy of 1987:WTFIGO? and it was pretty darned funny. I was never able to really be rocked by the KLF because of that. I know some people who swear by Chill Out, but I was always waiting for their followup to "The Queen and I".

Sean Carruthers, Saturday, 23 February 2002 01:00 (nineteen years ago) link

klf were cool.

ethan, Saturday, 23 February 2002 01:00 (nineteen years ago) link

bill drummond is cool.

paul, Saturday, 23 February 2002 01:00 (nineteen years ago) link

They were funny and subversive, they made a joyous cultureclash single with Tammy Wynette, a wonderful album in The White Room, and the best chillout album ever, Chill Out. Add the hilarious early sampling extravaganzas and the dumb gesture of burning £1m, and how can you not adore them?

Anyone remember Bill Drummond's great pre-JAMMs reply number, Julian Cope Is Dead?

Martin Skidmore, Saturday, 23 February 2002 01:00 (nineteen years ago) link

that was off of the creation album, wasnt it, martin?

paul, Saturday, 23 February 2002 01:00 (nineteen years ago) link

One of the KLF's great achievements was putting out, like, five singles from The White Room. The single versions are completely different from the album versions: generally faster, hookier - just more pop really. 'Last Train to Trancentral' is, to me, the epitome of this method: it's just hook after hook after hook, with a bonkers half-time breakdown and, at the end when it appears no more can possibly happen, a cameo dalek voice chanting 'Mu Mu'. Pop genius.

Ben Butler, Saturday, 23 February 2002 01:00 (nineteen years ago) link

"If you ask me, there isn't nearly enough Africa in their sequenced drum patterns"

Compared to what house/techno?

Tim, Saturday, 23 February 2002 01:00 (nineteen years ago) link

Yeah, you're getting old. KLF DID rock us, and not only that, they burned a million quid, which of course, makes everything else from here to eternity turn to shite.

cha cha, Sunday, 24 February 2002 01:00 (nineteen years ago) link

On my copy of "1987", The Queen & I is scratched and the needle jumps. How annoying is that?
Has anyone got/heard "Edits", the 'legal' version of the LP? So short, it retailed at the price of a 12" single + came with instructions on how to recreate the original record. I could never decide if this was classic or dud.

Jeff W, Monday, 25 February 2002 01:00 (nineteen years ago) link

Bill Drummon - great pop thinker, great pop hitmaker, great pop manager, superb writer, totally inspirational, and responsible for some of my favourite ever records. None more classic. And yes they did rock me.

Tom, Monday, 25 February 2002 01:00 (nineteen years ago) link

I often think that the best album never made was "The White Room" but with the 12" single mixes replacing the album cuts and the addition of 12"s of "It's Grim Up North," "America: What Time Is Love?" and the B-side of the latter "America No More." Now would that be the greatest album ever or what?

Marcello Carlin, Monday, 25 February 2002 01:00 (nineteen years ago) link

Oh, AND the Extreme Noise Terror version of 3AM Eternal as well as Wynette on Justified and Ancient, needless to say.

Marcello Carlin, Monday, 25 February 2002 01:00 (nineteen years ago) link

The very definition of having rocked me. Though sometimes I think I want to be Bill Drummond, so I would say that.

RickyT, Monday, 25 February 2002 01:00 (nineteen years ago) link

I think a KLF box set with all the mixes, side projects and other assorted madness is urgent and key. Even if they never released anthing they'd still be better than most groups. Me, I'd love to hear the Scottish world cup song as imagined in 45, that would surely rock me.

Billy Dods, Monday, 25 February 2002 01:00 (nineteen years ago) link

Oh God yes. They ruled.

stevo, Monday, 25 February 2002 01:00 (nineteen years ago) link

"I think a KLF box set with all the mixes, side projects and other assorted madness is urgent and key" you need to get ed to burn you his mp3 cd that he bought in russia which had every thing the klf has ever done on one or two cds. it is of course totally illegal.

can you burn cds of mp3's?

he also has evry kraftwerk release via the same method

alternatively. fly to russia/bulgaria/somewhere like that and buy a copy. they cost 50 roubles. (1 pound 25). maybe 60.

ambrose, Monday, 25 February 2002 01:00 (nineteen years ago) link

Will, Ed be my special fwiend and do that? Would work out cheaper than flying to Russia methinks.

Billy Dods, Monday, 25 February 2002 01:00 (nineteen years ago) link

I think Ed should be all our friends.

Ned Raggett, Monday, 25 February 2002 01:00 (nineteen years ago) link

You are, of course, all right.

The KLF were utterly (utterly utterly) BRILLIANT.

"Three-ay-ee-am; Three-ayeee-ay-em; Three-ay-ee-ay-em-ETERN-UA-AL!!!"

You know the score.

William Blake said he wasn't interested in what could be made "explicit to the idiot" - what on earth was he on about?!

Good for you Tom btw, I didn't think it was possible to adore the Smiths and the KLF...

Where is Drummond when his country needs him?!!!

Chris, Monday, 25 February 2002 01:00 (nineteen years ago) link

seven years pass...

picked up a copy of the america...what time is love? 12" today - for the hell of it and cuz it was cheap. not something you often see in the us, though i imagine it's a dollar-bin staple in the uk. never was a fan (they never made a dent in the us charts) but this is insane and hilarious and truly truly great. a parody of american excess? i dunno, but it has rocked me.

a dimension that can only be accessed through self-immolation (contenderizer), Wednesday, 25 November 2009 05:15 (eleven years ago) link

That's my favourite KLF track. It's so over the top it's incredible. Brilliant cover too, both of them - the one with the sitars and also the longboat one (different in the US).

everything, Wednesday, 25 November 2009 06:06 (eleven years ago) link

mine's got the longboat cover, which IS great and suits the music perfectly. listened to it 3 times in a row.

a dimension that can only be accessed through self-immolation (contenderizer), Wednesday, 25 November 2009 06:13 (eleven years ago) link

they never made a dent in the us charts

"3 a.m. Eternal" was big in the US and wikipedia says top 5 Billboard.

And oh yeah, they rocked me. One of the greatest ever groups/artists/acts etc etc of all time.

Spencer Chow, Wednesday, 25 November 2009 07:55 (eleven years ago) link

i think you missed the subtext in my earlier remark which might be dumbed-down as, "they never made a dent in the us charts during a period when i was paying more attention to the billboard charts than to my toenails and hey check out this insane sloth."

subtext

a dimension that can only be accessed through self-immolation (contenderizer), Wednesday, 25 November 2009 08:16 (eleven years ago) link

/unfunny

it kinda blows my mind that they made #5 in '91, cuz at that point i WAS at least half aware of radio pop and i missed it entirely.

a dimension that can only be accessed through self-immolation (contenderizer), Wednesday, 25 November 2009 08:18 (eleven years ago) link

I guess it was a hit because it mentioned "Rock"

Mark G, Wednesday, 25 November 2009 08:47 (eleven years ago) link

plus i lied earlier abt not being a fan. i now remember owning and loving the shit out of their cover of the dr. who theme once upon a really long time ago (late 80s sometime, basically in my childhood). so i guess the truth is that i not only now but always have loved the klf. so what must i hear next?

a dimension that can only be accessed through self-immolation (contenderizer), Wednesday, 25 November 2009 09:28 (eleven years ago) link

"If you ask me, there isn't nearly enough Africa in their sequenced drum patterns"
what on earth does this mean?

just finished reading the 17 and was left feeling disappointed, drummond has turned into little more than a grumpy old fart. standing in front of a class of schoolchildren and telling them music is irrelevant seems unhelpful and dickish. plus i don't feel the whole 'recording 17 people going hmmmm then deleting it' is quite the genius idea he thinks it is.

NI, Wednesday, 25 November 2009 10:20 (eleven years ago) link

i fought my way through the 17 book recently as well.
enjoyable in parts, but yes, he needs to lighten up.
i ended up agreeing with his mate at the end who bluntly tells him on one of their traditional journeys that the whole 17 thing is crap basically.
the breakdown of his life on a year by year basis is rather fascinating though.

mark e, Wednesday, 25 November 2009 10:30 (eleven years ago) link

Yeah, just got to finish it about 2 days ago.

Seems like the dude's rich enough to just fanny around thesedays.

Mark G, Wednesday, 25 November 2009 10:33 (eleven years ago) link

weren't the klf & co the biggest selling act in the world in 1991 or thereabouts? playing huge stadiums in russia etc. burning £1m probably wasn't probably as big a kick to his bank balance as you'd expect

NI, Wednesday, 25 November 2009 10:59 (eleven years ago) link

part of the current wealth reason : the ongoing success of the Proclaimers

he admits as much re their chart topping charity single for which he refused to let go of the royalties

mark e, Wednesday, 25 November 2009 11:02 (eleven years ago) link

http://www.youtube.com/user/klfcommunicationsnet

^AMAZING RESOURCE

SBing Crosby (haitch), Wednesday, 25 November 2009 11:30 (eleven years ago) link

it is - just wasted an hour there. "doctoring the tardis" turns out to be more goofy than revelatory, tho fun. and i realize now that i also used to own the "justified & ancient" 12-inch (or an album it appeared on, something like that). more or less the version featured in the vid. shit is bonkers yo - SO FUCKING GREAT tho i remember it being too fruity for me at the time.

i think i am a fan

a dimension that can only be accessed through self-immolation (contenderizer), Wednesday, 25 November 2009 12:10 (eleven years ago) link

Their last public appearance before retiring always raises a smile from UK types of a certain age.
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Vgaik2as06c

everything, Wednesday, 25 November 2009 18:30 (eleven years ago) link

I feel compelled to recommend Drummond's AMAZING early solo album The Man on every KLF thread.

Spencer Chow, Wednesday, 25 November 2009 19:19 (eleven years ago) link

Yeah, it's great. Notwithstanding his current, well-earned curmudgeon status, I think he's a genius.

everything, Wednesday, 25 November 2009 19:24 (eleven years ago) link

one month passes...

Revive!

Where the hell are these chants of "MU-MU! MU-MU!" in "Last Train to Trancentral"?

Wigglypedia sez:
Splendid Magazine said of the LP version: "The cries of "Mu Mu! Mu Mu! Mu Mu! Mu Mu!" take on a strangely liberating, mantra-like feel. It's the essence of great pop music, of great dance music, wholly compressed."

Tom Ewing, in his Top 100 Singles of the 90s list, sez:
And then it fades away and the chanting begins – “MU MU! MU MU! MU MU! KLF!”

Mr. Snrub, Tuesday, 5 January 2010 22:38 (eleven years ago) link

Yes they did rock me.

Mr. Snrub, Tuesday, 5 January 2010 22:38 (eleven years ago) link

At the end of the Live from the Lost Continent version, it changes from "Woo-Woo" to "MU-MU"(?)

everything, Tuesday, 5 January 2010 22:48 (eleven years ago) link

I've been on a early 90s jamz kick and never realized before how much of an exact rip the 3AM Eternal single is of Snap - 'The Power', down to the Eastern European voice sample at the start. feckin brilliant - How to Have a No 1 the Easy Way indeed...

Fahrvergnügent (herb albert), Tuesday, 5 January 2010 22:58 (eleven years ago) link

I think 3AM Eternal came first though - the first version came out in 89, The Power was a hit in 1990.

I just remembered that in one of his books Julian Cope inspiringly uses "Bill Drummond" as an adjective, as in "David Balfe was Bill Drummonded to the tits". Made me laugh.

everything, Tuesday, 5 January 2010 23:04 (eleven years ago) link

Here is the "Last Train to Trancentral" video:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=aqxtBggVsi0

Now would that be the "MU MU!"s there at 3:24?

Mr. Snrub, Wednesday, 6 January 2010 00:12 (eleven years ago) link

That's what I was thinking, yeah. It's "woo-woo" up till then, then for the last chorus it's "MU MU!".

everything, Wednesday, 6 January 2010 00:16 (eleven years ago) link

Has anyone got/heard "Edits", the 'legal' version of the LP? So short, it retailed at the price of a 12" single + came with instructions on how to recreate the original record. I could never decide if this was classic or dud.
― Jeff W, Sunday, February 24, 2002

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=m-lDwwW7Ql0

naus, Wednesday, 6 January 2010 09:18 (eleven years ago) link

+ the instructions themselves:

http://www.flickr.com/photos/woolner/3339270412/sizes/o/

naus, Wednesday, 6 January 2010 09:21 (eleven years ago) link

consider me 100% rocked.

ABSOLUTELY NO SCRUBS WHATSOEVER, Wednesday, 6 January 2010 11:23 (eleven years ago) link

On Spotify now:
https://open.spotify.com/album/4fBvkZkBuPyo3k7ZogKFAo?si=RKwfz02NSYqCAIUcDN-LDg

Jeff W, Thursday, 4 February 2021 00:12 (two months ago) link

Acker Bilk seems to have gone. Elvis has left the album.

stirmonster, Thursday, 4 February 2021 00:26 (two months ago) link

It's a Chill Out remix, but it sounds great! Exactly what I wanted.

fbclid=fhAZ3l (f. hazel), Thursday, 4 February 2021 02:24 (two months ago) link

(the last third of it is markedly different from Chill Out)

fbclid=fhAZ3l (f. hazel), Thursday, 4 February 2021 02:39 (two months ago) link

it is indeed. i never thought i would enjoy listening to it again so much.

stirmonster, Thursday, 4 February 2021 02:47 (two months ago) link

lol havent got there yet but sounding perfect on track 6

nxd, Thursday, 4 February 2021 02:48 (two months ago) link

so happy

nxd, Thursday, 4 February 2021 02:48 (two months ago) link

oh them last train synths melt my heart every time

nxd, Thursday, 4 February 2021 02:52 (two months ago) link

I make myself annoyed by these fuckers recycling the same stuff over and over again but they disappoint me again by doing this stuff over and over ag..... oh fuck, this is great... OMFG

Heavy Messages (jed_), Thursday, 4 February 2021 03:01 (two months ago) link

they could just release a CD of Madrugada Eterna repeated ten times and that'd be fine

fbclid=fhAZ3l (f. hazel), Thursday, 4 February 2021 03:19 (two months ago) link

ditto

nxd, Thursday, 4 February 2021 03:21 (two months ago) link

Well, it’s got sheep sounds, train sounds, Tuvan throat-singing, and I’m only into track 3. I’m for it!

john shopkins (naus), Thursday, 4 February 2021 09:09 (two months ago) link

hot diggity damn

nashwan, Thursday, 4 February 2021 11:49 (two months ago) link

This is terrific, shame to lose Elvis and Acker, but doesn’t change the overall experience too much. Though it feels a shade darker than before.

Dan Worsley, Thursday, 4 February 2021 12:36 (two months ago) link

Just gave this a listen through decent cans and a cranked Subpac (chair subwoofer thing) and can confirm it is an awesome fully immersive experience and you should all do the same asap.

Great rework, nice to hear this stuff in pristine digital quality rather than a tape of a tape of a crackly old 12" :)

(the one with 3 L's) (Willl), Thursday, 4 February 2021 13:56 (two months ago) link

the Wax Trax CD remained in print past the 1990s tbf

shivers me timber (sic), Thursday, 4 February 2021 20:19 (two months ago) link

the CD actually sounds really good, I mainly listened to it in the car back in the day (sometimes driving along parts of the route described in the track listing) so I didn't know how well it was mixed!

fbclid=fhAZ3l (f. hazel), Thursday, 4 February 2021 20:37 (two months ago) link

(I had the cassette version from Wax Trax during the 90s, but bought the CD at some point later)

fbclid=fhAZ3l (f. hazel), Thursday, 4 February 2021 20:50 (two months ago) link

https://www.klfrs.com/

Jeff W, Friday, 5 February 2021 16:10 (two months ago) link

'Come Down Dawn' looks VERY promising.

Spencer Chow, Friday, 5 February 2021 17:15 (two months ago) link

It is. :)

stirmonster, Friday, 5 February 2021 17:20 (two months ago) link

I wish they'd just reissue their catalog on vinyl. This streaming release situation where the samples are removed is antithetical to their operating principals, although offering your music on streaming without having it available to purchase in physical formats is essentially the same as burning money, so perhaps they are still operating accordingly.

brotherlovesdub, Friday, 5 February 2021 17:39 (two months ago) link

maybe they'll press up a couple thousand on vinyl and then take them to Jura

fbclid=fhAZ3l (f. hazel), Friday, 5 February 2021 18:09 (two months ago) link

I put Come Down Dawn on repeat at low volume while I slept the past couple nights, it's amazing to wake up for a minute or two in the middle of the night and see where it's at

fbclid=fhAZ3l (f. hazel), Friday, 5 February 2021 18:11 (two months ago) link

I wish they'd start to release these on Bandcamp.

jvc, Friday, 5 February 2021 18:20 (two months ago) link

looks like i accidentally just posted 'come back fat as a rat' on the highest grossing actors of all time vote
but i guess it works there

nxd, Friday, 5 February 2021 18:26 (two months ago) link

I don't like buying bootleg vinyl but I'll make an exception for The KLF because it's so incredibly expensive and unlikely to ever get repressed

That said I've upgraded the chances from 0% to like...2% now

frogbs, Friday, 5 February 2021 18:29 (two months ago) link

I guess Bill and Jimmy don't need any money, which is good for them, I suppose.

brotherlovesdub, Friday, 5 February 2021 18:34 (two months ago) link

If there is a De La Soul sampling situation with Chill Out then could they then reissue the original album on vinyl if they wanted to?

PaulTMA, Friday, 5 February 2021 19:33 (two months ago) link

what

shivers me timber (sic), Friday, 5 February 2021 20:01 (two months ago) link

De La Soul can't re-release their back catalog digitally because the sample clearances don't cover downloads or streaming, only various physical formats.

fbclid=fhAZ3l (f. hazel), Friday, 5 February 2021 20:17 (two months ago) link

I wish they'd start to release these on Bandcamp.

― jvc,

exactly.
they would be able to burn another million if they did this.

mark e, Friday, 5 February 2021 20:35 (two months ago) link

The KLF, famously known for having diligently cleared all their samples for physical releases, of course.

shivers me timber (sic), Friday, 5 February 2021 20:37 (two months ago) link

It's not like they ever had to burn the entire run of an album, or surrender international performing name rights to the entire band, over uncleared samples.

shivers me timber (sic), Friday, 5 February 2021 20:38 (two months ago) link

Spotify, Bandcamp, or Apple being onboard with casual copyright infringement as artistic expression seems unlikely, however

fbclid=fhAZ3l (f. hazel), Friday, 5 February 2021 20:47 (two months ago) link

think the bigger question is if this is gonna culminate in anything new

frogbs, Friday, 5 February 2021 20:49 (two months ago) link

would be cool if they finished the Black Room and released it

fbclid=fhAZ3l (f. hazel), Friday, 5 February 2021 20:53 (two months ago) link

there is no way that would be good

shivers me timber (sic), Friday, 5 February 2021 20:54 (two months ago) link

oh, now you want new AND good!

fbclid=fhAZ3l (f. hazel), Friday, 5 February 2021 20:55 (two months ago) link

:D

They did something new like two years ago, it seemed great from reports and phone clips! They haven't made a good record together in about 24 years, and let's face it, a majority of Jimmy's music since then is pretty bad. (respect knux to the Token EP, but he dropped out of the band before they even recorded it)

And going back to try and put yourself in the mindset of a mental breakdown that almost saw you chainsaw off your own hand thirty years ago, in order to finish writing songs that scared you so much you stopped writing them thirty years ago and have not written new music under your own name since, to record them with a band who are now two-thirds dead, seems unlikely even it it would be cool.

shivers me timber (sic), Friday, 5 February 2021 21:15 (two months ago) link

oh yeah that Transit Kings album was pretty good but I kinda doubt Cauty had much to do with it

frogbs, Friday, 5 February 2021 21:17 (two months ago) link

He's only credited with writing on some of the songs that carried over from the EP and singles. AFAIK his only recorded work with them was the Boom Bang Bombay single-sided 12", released as Custerd three years before the TKs album, in a run of 75 copies.

(discogs says that version was also used as a TK b-side later)

shivers me timber (sic), Friday, 5 February 2021 21:23 (two months ago) link

I've long been curious about the composition of that album, since Cauty was out early, and neither Pratt nor Beken really have any original compositions to their name, which leaves....Alex Patterson??

frogbs, Friday, 5 February 2021 21:29 (two months ago) link

Guy Pratt had written multiple #1 singles, and the two of them had done the score for Spaced together

shivers me timber (sic), Friday, 5 February 2021 21:46 (two months ago) link

one month passes...

Solid State Logik 2 is now on Spotify

Mark G, Wednesday, 24 March 2021 07:14 (two weeks ago) link

It says "12" master mixes 1989-2017", it's mostly the "Live from Trancentral" long versions, a few skipped last time, the 7" "Kylie said to Jason", and "Jarvis joins the Jams" from 2017 it seems.

Mark G, Wednesday, 24 March 2021 07:23 (two weeks ago) link

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Rn_ysTc1fxk

john shopkins (naus), Monday, 29 March 2021 06:53 (two weeks ago) link

^^ the Rites Of Mu film in approx 9000x better quality than it looked on VHS

armoured van, Holden (sic), Monday, 29 March 2021 08:12 (two weeks ago) link

I followed the instructions in "THE MANUAL (HOW TO HAVE A NUMBER ONE THE EASY WAY)" and had a number one hit single.

messiahwannabe, Saturday, 3 April 2021 14:39 (one week ago) link

wow, that Rites of Mu film is great

StanM, Saturday, 3 April 2021 15:43 (one week ago) link


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