Get SF Weekly Newsletters

Monday, July 23, 2012

Olympics 2012: Underworld and the Chemical Brothers Raise Hopes for Good Music at London Games

Posted By on Mon, Jul 23, 2012 at 10:12 AM

click to enlarge london_2012_olympic_logo.jpg

Having already established that official Olympics anthems are often tours de merde -- a reality that British maximalists Muse did more than their share to demonstrate with this year's contribution -- we'd all but given up hope for good tunes to soundtrack the sweat, tears, heartbreak, and triumph of the London games.

Let's not fret so soon. Today brings news that this Friday's opening ceremony will be overseen by the formidable audio-visual pairing of film director Danny Boyle and celebrated British electronic duo Underworld, which, hells yes. Boyle likes to use the music of Underworld in his films -- see the instantaneous ubiquity of "Born Slippy" after that awful/amazing Trainspotting toilet scene -- so having him serve as artistic director of the opening ceremony with Underworld music-directing the proceedings raises our eyebrows in a very optimistic direction. Underworld even plans to release Isle of Wonder: Music for the Opening Ceremony of the London 2012 Olympic Games on iTunes immediately after the event at midnight July 28, Pitchfork reports. We haven't heard a peep of it, but we'll bet you two bangers and a pint of lager that it'll show those five minutes of Muse cacophony for the awful bit of histrionics they were.

For some new Olympics music you can actually listen to, check out the Chemical Brothers' "Theme for Velodrome," a three-minute song meant to soundtrack the Olympics' six days of cycling events. Taking the high-speed repetition of cycling as its inspiration, "Theme For Velodrome" builds (with throwback-cheesy computerized voices) into a racy climax, its speediness implied until the beat hits halfway through, by which time you're definitely having visions of birdlike men in neon jerseys speeding through narrow streets in tightly packed groups and thinking you look totally just like that when you're hustling down Market Street, late to work, dodging big white buses and oblivious tourist cars double-parked in the bike lane. Okay, well sort of.

Check out "Theme from Velodrome" below, and read more about it and the Chemical Brothers' love of cycling and Kraftwerk over at the UK Guardian. Or, just play this and be happy that Muse won't be the only ones representing British music when the 2012 games begin this very Friday, July 27.

----
Follow us on Twitter @SFAllShookDown, follow Ian S. Port @iPORT, and like us at Facebook.com/SFAllShookDown.

  • Pin It

Tags: , , , , ,

About The Author

Ian S. Port

Comments

Subscribe to this thread:

Add a comment

Popular Stories

  1. Most Popular Stories
  2. Stories You Missed

Like us on Facebook

Slideshows

  • Phish at the Bill Graham Auditorium
    Phish is in the midst of a block of sold out shows at the Bill Graham Civic Auditorium (October 27-29). The Monday night concert featured a rare first set opener of “Walfredo” with the band members switching instruments for the song. The evening’s highlights included John Fishman and his iconic vacuum cleaner solo and favorites such as Chalk Dust Torture, Slave to the Traffic Light, Axilla, Rift, 2001 Space Odyssey, and Maze. The show also featured Phish’s debut of a, seemingly impromptu, version of “Take Me Out to the Ballgame” to with roaring approval of the, singing along, crowd. With Game 6 being tonight, partying Phish fans will join Giants fans in Civic Center Plaza where there will be a World Series viewing party on a large screen set up by the City. Photography by Jamie Soja.
  • The 4th Annual Masquerotica 2014 - NSFW
    The theme this year was Carnaval Mystique for the 4th Annual Masquerotica at The Factory. Attendees were entertained by strip dance, trapeze, and live music. Photographs by Calibree Photography.