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Demon forum / INTERMISSION 2: ELBISREVERRI
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Steve Watts 2001
134 posts
Reg: 5/12-11
Posted: 2012-09-11 14:04   » Email
P.S. DISCLAIMER

The films I've listed in this months' blog are recommended for those with a seriously hard constitution and a mind open and willing enough to allow them-selves to be exposed to images of extreme graphic violence and concepts of a disturbing nature.

These are NOT films in which the viewer should approach in any way lightly for the prospect of "entertainment" or for a cheap thrill.

Please be warned. These films are extremely disturbing. I've no wish to sound patronising but I would advise anyone wishing to view them to think long and hard before doing so.

I take no personal responsibility what so ever for anyone brave enough to journey along this path by viewing the films I have listed, but wish you the very best should you choose to do so.

Remember - once viewed it is impossible to go back.

I"ve uploaded the original vinyl version of Ivory Towers to YouTube at:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=zbRq_4fd13k

For a full catalogue of Demon songs featuring the work of Steve Watts visit

THE DEMONOLATERS YouTube channel at:

http://www.youtube.com/user/TheDemonolaters?feature=mhee

As ever - Enjoy!

Steve Watts 11: 09: 12

Next Transmission 11: 10: 12
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"TIME KILLS EVERYTHING"...hmmm...I'm not sure that I agree with that...I think it depends on the perspective you take. In my opinion, the darker the hour, the ray of hope shines at it's brightest. I listen to the best of these old Demon songs and other music from my youth, (and music from today), and something stirs inside me, a hope not so much destroyed, but more often than not, forgotten, and repressed.

"Ivory Towers" is one of my very favourite songs from the Demon back catalogue and deserves in my opinion, great respect. Not only for it's subtle complexity, but also for it's fabulously deep lyrics (certainly Dave's best on "Hold On To The Dream"), it's beautifully understated performances from the then band line-up, and also...because it gave me "HOPE"...which is after all, something truly worth searching for.
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The Saxophone solo in Ivory Towers was I think, something of an afterthought and appeared mainly because we had never actually used a Sax before in any Demon song prior to this (it's possibly the only time we used a Fretless Bass as well). Being ever the opportunists, we commandeered the help of a Mr (Rev) Ken Duckers, who happened to be recording in the studio next door to us. I kind of got in the way a bit here, and made a bit of a nuisance of myself (earning one of Dave's more gradually insidious side-shooting "hard-looks") for my efforts to extend the Sax solo and get more from the performer.

In retrospect, the end result works very well I think. It's a beautiful section that heightens the sense of melancholy, loss and loneliness of the character that provided the original inspiration.

Listen repeatedly to this section and you will realise that the chords are exactly the same as John Phillip's classic 1967 Monterey Pop Festival hit, "San Francisco (Be Sure to Wear Flowers in Your Hair)"; listen again and you will hear that Ken's improvised Saxophone solo is also very close to the "Mama's & the Papas" vocalists, original vocal line from "San Francisco".

The Saxophone solo becomes a reverb drenched voice and a sorrowful lament to the spirit of that youthful adventure.

Coincidence...surely not! Subtle eh?

I took a slightly more literal approach with the intro and outro sound-design, pragmatically latching onto the

"I remember Africa
Where millions all roamed free
And little kids drew pictures
Only innocence could see"

Here I created a soundscape of cascading waterfalls; chirruping birds and insects; primal flutes and tribal drums... a Nirvana of sorts...or an Elephants graveyard, where old mammals go to die. Heavy Man.
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Well, we had a verse and chorus and a collection of superb lyrics that amplified I think, Dave's initial inspiration gained from bumping into an old acquaintance on the street:

"I saw you standing on the street last night
You looked so all alone".

We now needed to arrange these ideas into a full song. I had been working on ideas of my own for some time outside of Demon, I think to Dave's chagrin.

My "Plan B" as it were was called "AN ADOLESCENT FANTASY", and one of the songs within it (later to be titled "Its Message Is...), contained a big emotional middle vocal section the first part of which is still in the DDR Vol 1 version:

"Time Bomb ticking, Life Time running down"

The second section of this had a fully composed vocal melody line with complete lyrics:

" 'Live for love' the old man cried
A blinding flash wiped everyone's tears away
'Live for love and life and don't dismay...
It's the only way' "

(Yeah- ok! I was 16 when I wrote it!)

Anyway, back then for whatever reason, I decided to drop this section from "Its Message Is..." and after a change of lyrics; this piece of music now forms the middle section of "Ivory Towers"

"Are the tears we shared in vain?
There's a million reasons to ask
What its' all about"

Apart from the lyrics, everything is exactly the same- even the big female choirs and crash guitars that form the backing track.
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Anyway...this is how it went...

I had a meeting with Dave in "The Vine" pub in Stoke (well we're musicians - we don't meet for coffee...) and after a heart to heart I said I wanted to leave the band. After more talking, Dave persuaded me to stay on for another album, which, he said, contained some very strong new material he had been working on, and if I still felt the same after we had finished it, we would part company. I agreed.

Throughout the albums progress, I kept on nagging Dave regarding "Ivory Towers", but I had to wait...I was a willing donkey. Dave had presented the songs' verse and chorus, and I was immediately hooked. For me, the song had all the essential ingredients for where I would have wished the band to go after "British Standard Approved" and that I think we so desperately attempted to achieve on "Heart Of Our Time" in a naive attempt to replace Mal, and also in a continued attempt to direct the bands perceived new direction
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"Ivory Towers" was the first song I heard to be included on the new Demon album and was (rather cruelly I thought) used as a carrot to get me to wade through a lot of crap - (sorry - I don't think that "Hold On To The Dream" is one of Demon's best albums, although I do think it contains some of the bands best songs) - before I could get to the point of actually working on it.

I thought then (and still do) that the snippets that I heard were superb, and if the entire album were of that standard then we could perhaps succeed in surpassing "Taking The World By Storm" or "British Standard Approved"...who knows?

One lives in Hope...perhaps...just perhaps? We have to don't we?
_________________________________________________


In the film "Irreversible", (as well as his other works) director Gasper Noe presents "hope" as an almost pointless and naïve aberration; something to which human beings cling in a desperate attempt to prevent themselves from going mad- a pretense in which to indulge the illusion that the world in which we live makes some kind of sense and that everything will turn out for the best.

Grim isn't it?

When Dave cast out the life raft that was "Ivory Towers" in an attempt to get me involved in "Hold On To The Dream" after I declared I would be leaving the band post "Taking The world By Storm", I clung to it (however naively) - in hope.
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"Ivory Towers" is I think one of Demons finest songs that like "Remembrance Day" before it, leaves me with that feeling of hope. Unlike "Remembrance Day", it doesn't wallow in a sometimes over-blown triumphalism...it's much more subtle than that. It has within it, a melancholic listlessness which later erupts into an angry defiant shout that although admits there is "no way back", also declares:

"The spirit of our youth still lives
In the Heart of the few"

That after all and through everything...there is still hope. Does that sound naive?
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Well...I'm a huge film fan, and the vast majority of mainstream cinema just doesn't cut it (no pun intended) for me anymore...or...perhaps I'm a latent serial-killer who's suppressing dark, hidden, psychotic tendencies (that's a joke by the way), or...

Perhaps I'm looking for that ray of hope, even in the darkest, dankest dungeons that the human mind has to offer? I prefer this explanation - it's more comforting.

Its like...I experience the worst (cut to cliché film sequence)...and after that extremely challenging experience, I watch my kids playing (cue cliché sentimental movie music) and I see that ray of hope...and I have a feeling that all is well...or at least, could be.
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I've also found myself questioning why it is I watch extreme films. In fact I've spent a lot of my summer break exposing myself (hold on...I'll re-phrase that...serial killer AND flasher is a bit much) indulging in... an uncut collection of the most extreme and previously banned cinema that it's possible to watch:

Nekromantik; Mermaid In A Manhole Cover; A Serbian Film; Flower of Flesh and Blood; I Stand Alone; Maniac: Gummo: Irreversible: Enter The Void; The Butcher: Nightmare in a Damaged Brain: Snuff: Ichi The Killer; Three Extremes; Mordum; Inside; Salo; The Human Centipede (Parts 1-2); Funny Games; Men Behind The Sun; House at the Edge of the Park: Black Sun; City of the Living Dead; Cannibal Holocaust; Extremities; Aftermath; Possession; Begotten; Incarnation of Evil; Martyrs; Grotesque; Imprint...

Films so disturbing and downright frightening that they either leave you reeling in disgust or hiding behind the settee...films that really, really push the boundaries (and your mind) to the edge of acceptability. Yep...I really rode the Rollercoaster...why?
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A few days before watching "Irreversible" I was wondering about which Demon song to write about and for some reason I immediately latched onto "Ivory Towers" - I don't know why...perhaps I'm still looking for that "peace of mind" that the song enquires of it's aging generation who were "born in hope" enjoying a "time of love and peace".
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"Irreversible" is a film that pulls no punches. I'm not going to go into detail here, but like his other films, French director Gasper Noe's second film, contains images of extreme graphic violence, pornography, and gore, along with mind-bendingly complex philosophical ideas and visual presentations, that, if you really allow yourself to be immersed in, stay with you long after the film has ended...

or rather, in the case of "Irreversible", started - as the film actually begins at the end of the story and through thirteen scenes, gradually works it's way backwards over 97 minutes to the beginning.

It's very bleak, very disturbing and you need a lot of patience, a strong constitution, and a very strong stomach to watch it.

Its central premise is "TIME KILLS EVERYTHING"

Like in Roger Waters' later work ("The Wall"; "The Final Cut"; "Amused To Death") there is in Noe's films though...if you care to look for it...a ray of hope. Perhaps this exists only in my imagination, perpetrated by some animalistic will to survive, or by some pseudo-intellectual necessity to rationalise the "life is shit and then you die" nihilism that runs throughout these challenging, artistic works.
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I can't stop thinking about this film I watched the other night called "Irreversible".
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IRREVERSIBLE

Hello - Steve Watts here...

Here I am again one month on, smoking Camel cigarettes; same pub; same beer (still very nice) my trip abroad fast becoming a distant memory; looking for some inspiration to write this months Demon blog.

The sun is in one of those loosing battles with the swarming Pennine clouds...its just "One of Those Days in England" again...everything seems quite...normal...except...
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[Edited 2012-09-11 14:47]

dEMON dUDES rEVENGE
VERY SOON...
7 posts
Reg: 4/7-12
Posted: 2012-09-12 13:11   » Email
"SNOWBLIND" (Demo Version)


Hello all - Steve Watts here...due to the massive amount of work involved in the production of

DEMON DUDES REVENGE "AN ADOLESCENT FANTASY" (VOL 2)

I've decided to give you a sneak preview of the opening song "Snowblind" due to the fact the second DDR CD will now not be finished until at least the middle of 2013 and also I think...

You might quite like it!

Loads of work has been done on the second album already, but I've decided to extend it to a whopping one and a half hours - making the entire "Adolescent Fantasy" album 2.5hrs long!

Why not? We think it will be worth the wait and hope you will too.


You can listen to rough working demos of the new album at:

http://soundcloud.com/demon-dudes-revenge/sets/demon-dudes-revenge-an/


...and of course purchase Demon Dudes Revenge: An Adolescent Fantasy Vol.1 from:

http://demondudesrevenge.com

The CD is also available as unique, individually pressed editions from AMAZON-ON-DEMAND U.S. at:

http://www.amazon.com/Adolescent-Fantasy-Vol-1-Demon-Revenge/dp/B008TZXD3E/ref=sr_1_1?s=music&ie=UTF8&qid=1344427463&sr=1-1&keywords=demon+dudes+revenge

and also worldwide as an MP3 album and single tracks from all major Digital Distributors (see DDR website for details)

Hope you enjoy the new material.

Best for now, Steve Watts 12: 09: 12
[Edited 2012-09-12 13:16]

Giles
Cheshire
746 posts
Reg: 5/5-06
Posted: 2012-09-12 14:09
Hey Dude! Like the Snowblind track ( a bit 'Floydesque'). Also 'King For a Day' on there too - I've got a good feeling about that, I can almost hear the melody! Wink

Giles
Cheshire
746 posts
Reg: 5/5-06
Posted: 2012-09-13 09:42
"Here I created a soundscape of cascading waterfalls; chirruping birds and insects; primal flutes and tribal drums... a Nirvana of sorts...or an Elephants graveyard, where old mammals go to die. Heavy Man. "

It's a beautiful intro Steve - really beautiful.
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