Category Archives: 4Ever Songs

4Ever Songs: Rheingold ‘Dreiklangs-Dimensionen’

Named after the opera by Richard Wagner, Düsseldorf’s Rheingold were part of Die Neue Deutsche Welle movement which also included artists such as Nena, Peter Schilling and Alphaville. Between 1980 to 1984, Rheingold released three albums ‘Rheingold’‘R.’ and ‘Distanz’, all working with the legendary Conny Plank.

Led by Bodo Staiger, the band also featured his now-wife Brigitte Staiger on backing vocals and Lothar Manteuffel on keyboards. Singing primarily in Deutsch, they also differed from their electronically driven contemporaries by having a more melodic vocal style and a distinctive rhythm guitar template.

Rheingold never performed live so have almost become a forgotten band whenever the history of German pop is discussed.

4Ever Songs: Jet “Are You Gonna Be My Girl” 

“Are You Gonna Be My Girl” is a song by the Australian garage rock band Jet. It was the first and lead single from their debut record Get Born, which was released in 2003. Upon the release, the song hit number 29 on the Billboard Hot 100, number 7 on the Mainstream Rock Tracks and number 3 on the Modern Rock Tracks. The song was voted number 1 in the Triple J Hottest 100 list in 2003, and is regarded as the band’s signature song.

4Ever Songs: Antony and The Johnsons ‘Hope There’s Someone’

Born in Sussex, England, Anohni also spent her childhood in Amsterdam and the San Francisco Bay Area before moving to NYC at the age of 19. Anohni emerged with her musical ensemble Antony and the Johnsons in 1998. In 2005 Antony and the Johnsons won the UK’s Mercury Prize for the album I am a Bird Now

4Ever Songs: Chic ‘Le Freak’

Chic was a group led by bass player Bernard Edwards and guitarist Nile Rodgers. Both were very successful writers and producers, combining to work on hits for Sister Sledge and Diana Ross.

It was New Year’s Eve, 1977, and they were invited to Studio 54, a very popular club in New York Cit. A singer named Grace Jones wanted Rodgers and Edwards to do some production work for her, and asked them to come down to the club as her guest. When they got there, they were not on the list, and couldn’t convince the doorman that they were the group Chic. All dressed up and nowhere to go on New Year’s Eve, they left and started writing this song as a reply to the doorman. They called it “F–k Off,” but when they decided to record it, Edwards wasn’t comfortable with the cursing, so they tried it as “Freak Off.” That title sounded lame, but when they made the opening lines “aaaahh Freak Out!” instead of “aaaahh F–k Off!”, they came up with a better title: “La Freak.”

Best Covers: Patti Smith ‘Horses’

Horses’ second cover, ‘Land: Horses / Land of a Thousand Dances / La Mer(de)’ follows a similarly fused format, this time offering almost 10 minutes of stream of consciousness-type rambling weaved among lyrics from Chris Kenner’s ‘Land of a Thousand Dances’. The track depicts a free-flowing elegy to the ill-fated Johnny, a figure loosely based on William Burroughs’ Wild Boys character of the same name, who is subjected to rape before committing suicide. Imagery of horses appears among the confronting themes illustrated within the song’s lyrics, leading to the common mistake of titling the song simply ‘Horses’ and causing its unanimous recognition as the album’s centrepiece.

4Ever Songs: Duran Duran “Girls On Film”

“Girls On Film” is the second track from infamous English new-wave band Duran Duran’s self titled debut album, released 1981. Duran Duran is made up of five men from Birmingham; Simon Le Bon (vocals), Nick Rhodes (keyboards), John Taylor (bass guitar), Roger Taylor (drums) and Andy Taylor (guitar). The band members wrote the track, and “Girls On Film” is what jet started Duran Duran’s music career.

“Girls On Film” discusses the exploitation of fashion and pornographic models. The track begins with the whirring of a motor drive, as well as cameras flashing. The song has an upbeat, almost punk feel to it, as well as never crossing its boundaries into pop fully.

4Ever Songs: The Church “Under the Milky Way”

The Church‘s “Underneath the Milky Way” is a beautiful yet elegiac minor key anthem that is somehow both about human significance and lack thereof at the same time.   The strangely named Australian alternative rockers have functioned continuously since their founding in 1980, regularly releasing warmly received albums and touring while many of their peers have broken-up, evaporated or self-destructed.

Appearing on their 1988 album, StarfishThe Church‘s first record to appear on a major label, the band did not really commercialize their sound, despite “Under The Milky Way” becoming their first and really only, Top 40 chart hit