There are certain people that bring out your most creative side.
The side that busts out the kindergarten craft supplies or decides to whip up a quick rosée sauce, or decides to paint the living room couch with abstract flower patterns (fact: my grandmother did this a lot).
These people are crucial for bringing out the things we don’t usually get to express in our day-to-day lives.
Many people have jobs that are rather stifling in terms of imaginative output, so it’s important to find someone who brings out the weirdest, wackiest side of your personality just to balance things out.
And hey, musicians need inspiration too. Today’s spotlight is directed at Glasgwegian chamber pop seven-piece Belle and Sebastian, who took inspiration in the classic guitar licks of Thin Lizzy and wound up inspiring Mates of State and The Avalanches.
Sleep The Clock Around – Belle and Sebastian
The original – Belle and Sebastian from The Boy With The Arab Strap, 1998
The cover – Mates of State from Crushes (The Covers Mixtape), 2010
The cover and the original don’t sound too different, though the Mates of State’s version is certainly livelier. There’s a stronger female harmonization, undoubtedly attributable to the powerful voice of Kori Gardner, which completely upstages the shadowy, breathy vocals of Belle and Sebastian’s Sarah Martin.
Onto the next! Up next we have another Belle and Sebastian original followed by a remix executed by the most unlikely of remixers: The Avalanches!
I’m A Cuckoo by Belle and Sebastian
The original – Belle and Sebastian from Dear Catastrophe Waitress, 2004
Fun fact: the guitar samples used in this track were taken from The Boys Are Back In Town by Thin Lizzy, and you can hear Belle and Sebastian mention them in I’m A Cuckoo’s lyrics.
The Boys Are Back In Town – Thin Lizzy from Jailbreak, 1976
Onto the remix.
More of a myth than a reality, The Avalanches have long whispered rumours of putting out a second album. However, just like the parent that promises ice cream if we can just be good, The Avalanches have probably deemed us all to be not good enough for another scoop of their trademark smooth, creamy, sample-rich tunes.
Ted Greenwald of Wired put out a brilliantly informative article on the production that went into this remix, and I strongly suggest that you check it out.
The remix – I’m A Cuckoo – Belle and Sebastian (The Avalanches Remix), 2007
African pan flute and ten thousand variations of bongo? Check. Chorus of smiling tribal villagers? Check. Sunset on the horizon silhouetting a gazelle leaping past a baobob tree? Check.
So, my message to you? Find the person that inspires you and stick to them like glue.