Birdstar’ is a demo (although it still sounds pretty darn top-drawer to me) from the ‘Dubnobasswithmyheadman’ period. Many the track’s elements were subsequently used in other songs, right up until ‘Second Toughest In The Infants’, and also utilised in a number of classic Underworld remixes, including Bjork’s ‘Human Behaviour’ and ‘Black Sky’ by Shakespears Sister.
In January ‘94, Rick Smith, Darren Emerson & Karl Hyde released their debut album – Dubnobasswithmyheadman – on independent label Junior Boy’s Own. Up to that point, the three-piece were seen as something of a square peg. They crafted songs from transcendent dance music. They were clearly a band – complete with frontman/guitarist – yet they made records where the constituent parts and players were often indefinable. Musically, they took elements from the European techno underground & Balearic clubs and fused them with spliced up beat poetry and strung out ambient sounds. Really, they just weren’t like anyone else.
Underworld’s debut arrived as a fully formed statement of intent. Its’ nine tracks showcased the limitless possibilities of electronic music. Although born out of club culture, Dubnobass… defied the accepted genres of the time – equally suited to the dancefloor and the after party, it was as immersive an experience quaking through bassbins or headphones. Two decades on from its original release, it’s unarguable that Dubnobasswithmyheadman is one of the most influential British electronic records of all time; a signpost for everything from dance music’s easy relationship with main stages at festivals to the radio/globe-conquering EDM phenomenon.
To celebrate Dubnobasswithmyheadman’s twentieth anniversary, the record has been meticulously remastered at Abbey Road for a deluxe reissue by the band’s Rick Smith. Revisiting the original MIDI files, Rick uncovered a wealth of previously unreleased material and rare alternate mixes that sit alongside the record’s original companion singles and remixes and offer a fascinating insight into the creation of the record. The resultant release is the definitive version of one of those rare records that truly deserves to be described as a classic.
To coincide with the re-release of Dubnobasswithmyheadman, Underworld will play the album in full at a unique show at London’s Royal Festival Hall on Saturday 11th October 2014. This show will offer fans a unique chance to see Underworld in one of the capital’s most iconic venues playing this classic album in its entirety for the first time. Tickets cost £35/£30 and are available from July 2nd.
Dubnobasswithmyheadman is the first release through Universal Music’s exclusive worldwide deal for the band’s iconic collected works. Work is under way on plans for forthcoming future deluxe, remastered editions of each of the band’s classic albums.
Original album tracklisting:
1.DARK & LONG
2.MMM…SKYSCRAPER I LOVE YOU
8.RIVER OF BASS
Extra disc tracklistings:
4.DARK & LONG (DARK TRAIN)
6. CONCORD (3 Comp75 id9 A1771 Aug 93A)
7. CAN YOU FEEL ME? (from A4796)
8.BIRDSTAR (A1558 Nov 92B.1)
CD2 Singles 1991 – 1994
1.THE HUMP (WILD BEAST)
2.ECLIPSE (released as Lemon Interrupt)
4. DIRTY (released as Lemon Interrupt)
6.DARK & LONG (HALL’S EDIT)
7.DARK & LONG (DARK TRAIN)
CD3 Remixes 1992 – 1994
1.MMM…SKYSCRAPER I LOVE YOU (JAM SCRAPER)
2.COWGIRL (IRISH PUB IN KYOTO MIX)
3.DARK & LONG (MOST ‘OSPITABLE MIX)
4.MMM…SKYSCRAPER I LOVE YOU (TELEGRAPH 16.11.92)
5. DARK & LONG (BURTS MIX)
6.DOGMAN GO WOOF
7. DARK & LONG (THING IN A BOOK MIX)
CD4 PREVIOUSLY UNRELEASED RECORDINGS 1991 – 1993
1.CONCORD (3 Comp75 id9 A1771 Aug 93A)
2.DARK & LONG(1struffid3A15512)
3.MMM…SKYSCRAPER I LOVE YOU (A1765 Sky Version id4. Harmone6 COMP43)
4.MMM…SKYSCRAPER I LOVE YOU (After sky id6 1551 2)
5.CAN YOU FEEL ME? (from A4796)
6. BIRDSTAR (A1558 Nov 92B.1)
7.DIRTY EPIC (Dirty Ambi Piano A1764 Oct 91)
8.SPOONMAN (version1 A1559 Nov92)
9.ORGAN (Eclipse version from A4796)
CD5 LIVE JAM KYME RD (PREVIOUSLY UNRELEASED LIVE REHEARSAL RECORDED IN THE BAND’S HOME STUDIO IN 1993)
1.MMM…SKYSCRAPER I LOVE YOU
5.BIG MEAT SHOW