The Story of Zebra

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Random Tox
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The Story of Zebra

Postby Random Tox » Wed Jul 27, 2005 9:49 am

Dance Floor Music With A Yello Twist


YELLO, the Swiss duo who invented the core electronic dance movement with the first continental rap record 'Bostich' 13 years ago, are still on the top of the cutting edge of dance music with the arrival of their highly anticipated first album in 3 years, ZEBRA.

YELLO - masters of the dance beat - the innovators who brought you dance classics like Vicious Games, I Love You, Oh Yeah and The Race continue to revolutionize the never-ending 'Rhythm Divine'. The proof is 100 % black & white beating drums running wild in the tropical jungle of exotic dance fare. ZEBRA is a funky affair.

YELLO continue to transcend the parameters of outstanding dance music, and now they are gradually expanding their horizons into the world of vision. Based on Boris Blank's unconventional samples and innovative musical arrangements, self-confessed renaissance man, crooner extraodinaire Dieter Meier is not only telling stories in dance music, but together, YELLO have created an untamed creature for the 90's - ZEBRA - a ground breaking dance floor album, a fantastic audio-visual environment.

The band still sound fresher and more unpredictable than they ever have before. Somehow it's hard to believe ZEBRA is YELLO's tenth studio album.

How does YELLO continue to be cutting edge of dance without losing the magic?

"There's always been an ambient sensation to YELLO's music," reflects vocalist/narrator Dieter Meier. "Some call it the human touch of electronics. That's what Blank is all about. He plays electronics and samples like other people play real instruments. For him it is an organic process."

If you are discovering YELLO for the first time - they are the undispute innovators of European dance floor music. ZEBRA is an outstanding dance orientated collection of tracks ranging from mesmerising, psychedelic dance numbers destined for dance floor heaven ie. Night train, Move Dance Be Born,The Premix, Do It - to haunting ambient, ballads I... I'm In Love and Tremendous Pain.

"When people listen to Tremendous Pain," observes Meier, "it might be an outstanding track stylistically, but it's still danceable. Like any track, it has to make its own way. Once people discover it's a YELLO track, they'll suddenly begin to realise it's the guys who founded this whole movement, who were out there with Bostich, who were played by Frankie Crocker on WBLS In New York City back in '81 - who opened the doors for a whole new movement."

Do not be fooled by the black and white stripes of the ZEBRA. This is only a form of camouflage. The narrative is 100 % Dieter Meier. The pulse of the moment is 100 % Boris Blank. This is dance floor music with a YELLO twist.

YELLO are relentless. Anyhow, anywhere, anytime... YELLO will stop at nothing on ZEBRA. Influences and inspiration are welcomed from around the world. About the uptempo be-bop big band instrumental S.A.X. Dieter Meier describes it as "A nightshift in Tobago where Glen Miller finally accepts the kiss of the Spider Woman".

On the Indian flavoured New Deli(ish) closing track Poom Shanka, YELLO witness a comtemporary Buddha fall down a gangway at JFK, out of a plane from Dusseldorf. Although he swears he is not drunk, everyone knows it is a lie, including a smiling monk who is listening to the music which only he was able to hear.

On Fat Cry reggae meets the Eiffel Tower while YELLO insist on dragging it back to Kingston Town. "Rhythm Divine" makes a cameo appearance on backing vocals in 93 degrees in the shade while the raga rhythms melt into five million cans filled with ice cold beer.

ZEBRA is YELLO's first global dance floor album where melody and rhythm interlock in one big passionate kiss. This is an album that radiates an ethereal, ambient half-man, half-animal intuition. The machines and the sampling are still prowling around the wilderness of the deepest jungles of dance culture.

On ZEBRA YELLO persevere and push the outer limits of dance music into an altogether new galaxy of sound and vision. ZEBRA is almost like a dance floor travelogue; it's an exploration of new sounds. It boldly gies where no other dance record has gone before. ZEBRA covers new territory.

There's a wonderful dance anthem on the album called Move Dance Be Born. One get's the impression it's almost as if YELLO are gracefully blowing away the ashes of the rave scene in exchange for the spirituality of dance music. Surprisingly enough, the song revolves around a group of whirling dervishes at a rave trying to find a solutions as to how to bring back the first dog sent into outer space!

The first single taken from the album is a jazzy digital brass pop song entitled HOW HOW. YELLO have mixed their own alternate version entitled The Premix (HOW HOW) which is also featured on the album. YELLO consciously set out to investigate the dance floor possibilities of HOW HOW, and in the process, discovered that it had another life of its own.

The same premix technique applies to the ballad Tremendous Pain. YELLO decided to kick off the album with an alternate version which they re-titled Suite 909.

Says Dieter, "Suite 909 is an original track by Boris Blank elaborated over a period of a couple of days. Technically and aesthetically it isn't a re-mix. It's the same track but YELLO have managed to re-investigate new possibilities the track has to offer that weren't investigated in Tremendous Pain."

"For YELLO it's always interesting to see how a re-mixer is going to interpret our original track," continues Meier. "What is even more interesting is to see how YELLO can expand on a track with their own unique approach to ambient sounds, song structure, arrangements and rhythm. When Boris finished the premix of Tremendous Pain, we totally flipped out."

Suite 909 like the entirety of ZEBRA will certainly wake people up. It isn't techno and it isn't house. ZEBRA is uptempo, gorgeous, it's new and it has a fresh sound, and what's more it's still recognisably YELLO.

***
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Trillian-Arno-
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Postby Trillian-Arno- » Fri Jul 29, 2005 4:34 pm

And for me Zebra is the worst Yello album. :roll:
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Random Tox
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Postby Random Tox » Sun Jul 31, 2005 10:56 am

I am just listening to an old MIniDisk I compiled YEARS ago, kindof a Bestof Vol1 - and .. well i havent listened to some of them in a long time

La Habanera
Blender
Hawaiina Chance
Rhythm Divine
etc

those are just levels above the things on Zebra. it seems.

but then again zebra is really not to be called techno or house... its much more

and Boris is so much more than an ultraprofessional sound sampler, he's a story teller, unlike any other he manages to "talk" to my brain with his music, i can sooo easily see pictures and scenes from his music.

you shouldn't let yourself being "distracted" by the beats underneath.. use them as a train, a means to transport you thru the sound.. then listen to waht boris plays...

I also never forget to which degree dieter's texts are unprepared, he just gets them when Boirs plays around (he once said)

genius. no wonder so many bands tribute to them.

I really like the vocal and melody house from "Little Louie Vega" and he uses so much yello (dont bother, one ca hear he knows what to do with it)

cool

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