8th september 2008|
stupid prick gets chased by the polis and loses his slut girlfriend
the mix of 'batcat' is different to that featured on the hawk is howling
international release dates|
usa: 9th september 2008 (vinyl and download only)
uk/europe cd: pias/wall of sound [WOS037CD]
uk/europe 12": pias/wall of sound [WOS037T]
usa 12": matador [ole-827]
previously-unreleased material, recorded during the sessions for 'the hawk is howling'. 'batcat' and 'stupid prick....' were both recorded by andy miller at chem 19 (feb 2008) and mixed by gareth jones at castle of doom. 'devil rides' features vocals from roky erickson, and was recorded by tony doogan at castle of doom (summer 2007), with roky's vocal recorded at wire recording by stuart sullivan and mixed by gareth jones at castle of doom. 'devil rides' lyrics and music written by stuart.
single first mention by stuart in a posting on mogwai's website on 14th april 2008, having been mastered the previous week. 'batcat' confirmed as the lead track at the glasgow show on 26th april 2008. did not reach the top 100 of the uk singles chart on release.
a couple of articles appeared online in 2006 mentioning a collaboration between mogwai and roky erickson, former 13th floor elevators frontman.
stuart interview, la weekly, august 2008:
i asked roky to sing after hearing that he’d been doing some shows around austin. we tracked him down using our batman detective skills. i grew up listening to the elevators and loved the idea of getting a legendary musician back in the studio after years of no one knowing what he was up to.
stuart, july 2008:
'stupid prick gets chased by the police and loses his slut girlfriend': last summer we were commissioned to score a film called paraiso travel. after we explained that we had a short space of time to record the music we recorded and delivered the rough mixes only for them to be rejected and us to be sacked without receiving any money towards our costs incurred. it was without doubt the most unprofessional way that we have ever been treated and we are still owed a substantial amount of money from the film makers. the song title is a description of what happens in the opening scene of the film. 'thank you space expert' (a quote from a news anchor) was also written originally for the film and by rights should be called stupid prick finds that his slut girlfriend has gone the whole hog and become a prostitute and now lives in a trailer park in somewhere shite in america. ha, i've just given away the ending of their rubbish film. lynn fainchtein the music producer is a deceitful liar.
oh, mogwai. so much to say after all we've been through.. but i'll save all that for the album. it's preceeded by this 'batcat' ep which is a real mixed bag. if you loved the immense 'glasgow mega snake' from mr. beast and hoped for more along those lines you're shit in luck because 'batcat' is it's closest relative, it's not right up there with it but it's pretty tidy. five minutes of balls-out rock riffing and squalls with a highly satisfying bass sound cutting through the chords to assault your poor wittle speaky weakers. the comically appallingly/brilliantly titled 'stupid prick gets chased by the police and loses his slut girlfriend' passes by fairly uneventfully with the usual arpeggio action augmented by pretty piano twinkles, melancholic organ drones and an almost dancey syncopated drumbeat, it's nice enough but nothing more. 'devil rides' is the big disappointment, that it's not as good as the hammer horror classic 'the devil rides out' probably isn't that surprising but the fact that a collaboration with roky erikson (former frontman of the wonderful 13th floor elevators) which seems so interesting on paper has turned out to be almost painful to listen to is a real shame. i wasn't a fan when i first heard it and sadly the office now agrees.. chris reckons it sounds like michael stipe dying. the cracked voice of an old fella can be an affecting thing and that's obviously what they were going for with the highly mournful lyrics but it doesn't really work for me. still, what the fuck do we know. we've got about 7000 orders for this one so be quick to avoid disappointment etc. etc.
‘batcat‘, the latest single from glasgow mega rockers mogwai is taken from their impending album, ‘the hawk is howling’.
the new album was described on the band’s website as a “howling hawk” of a record (a hint at the title) and to surmise from the evidence shown in ‘batcat‘, that wouldn’t be far wrong. ‘batcat‘ is, oddly, evocative of queens of the stone age in places with a dirty, grimy, sleazy rock feel to it and is in a similar mould to mogwai tracks of yore such as ‘ratts of the capital’, and ‘like herod’.
the bbc music department seem to be well into their post-rock at the moment, having used ‘explosions in the sky’ on the advert for a recent nature documentary, and employing mogwai’s ‘mr. beast’ album at every opportunity on top gear, so expect to hear ‘batcat‘ in the new series when they talk about the most brutish car in existence, for this is exactly what this song is, a brute.
the rhythm section is what drives this song. the bassline like a river; a sinisterly meandering little stream to begin with, but it soon bursts down the mountainside, exploding into a torrent of noise, the drums pushing it along like a tidal force, culminating in its arrival into the sea, where it smashes a ship against the rocks.
stomping, crushing and destroying. the track is five and a half minutes long (give or take a few seconds) and mogwai manage to pack so much intensity into those five minutes that it feels like you have just wrestled with a hurricane, and won (or survived the last half an hour of a recent my bloody valentine concert all over a again).
‘batcat‘ is a ferociously powerful track thoroughly capable of pissing off the neighbours, probably by shaking their house to the ground.
limbering up for their imminent full-length offering the hawk is howling, mogwai release this excellent ep, featuring two exclusive tracks. the main draw, 'batcat' is a thunderous piece of instrumental metal with an inscrutably hefty bottom end and softly wailing guitar leads threaded underneath the mighty riff scaffold. next comes (brace yourself) 'stupid prick gets chased by the police and loses his slut girlfriend', which in direct contradiction to the title, is actually really quite beautiful, packing in electronic tones and glistening guitar arpeggiations, all threaded together by big, sweeping chord changes. finally, roky erickson of the 13th floor elevators supplies a guest vocal on 'devil rides', a typically brooding slow jam, with a bit of xylophone thrown in to brighten up the gloomy tangle of guitars. highly recommended. ...
brilliant! crunching guitars are the main feature of this sheer sonic, heavy metal-ish onslaught.
an excellent way to spend five minutes. or 10 if, like me, you play it again immediately after listening to it the first time!
**** [gurdip thandi]