9 March 2017, No. 243, Level 42, ‘The Chant Has Begun (OOFT! Edit)’

OOFT! is Ali Herron out of Glasgow, and I have a few of his edits here in the record show. We covered his long edit of Keni Burke’s “Risin’ to the Top” at No. 74, though OOFT! and the editing are barely discussed. This coverage of No. 243, “The Chant Has Begun (OOFT! Edit)” by Level 42, will be another like that, since I don’t know the original tune or the group. I’m classing them alongside Gang of Four and Shriekback, post-punk stuff that later got a little too saturated with slap-bass to be tolerable for more than a song or two in a row. I think of that happening starting in the late ’80s, like 1987, but this song’s from 1984, and “I Love a Man in Uniform” is from 1982, so maybe Gang of Four and Shriekback are bad examples. APB, “What Kind of Girl Are You,” sort of also comes to mind, but no slap bass there. I think saxophones also figure into this sound I’m trying to define; it verges on INXS sometimes.

The only other thing is that I wish the titular line was chanted like “the spirit of the people / the rhythm has begun.” I like those chants (and any chants, pretty much), but I want to hear them chant “the chant has begun,” not just sing it as the trailing-off final line of a few vocal sections. I suppose I should write my own music, and then I could make it exactly how I want it.