Some people have too much free time

Hey there! No, we’re not dead, as Nuno suggested in his last post. No, we’re just utterly occupied… Half of us are now working, and the rest are either looking for a job or finishing their degrees, so there is not a lot of free time.

As you might have noticed, I am an huge music lover. What you don’t know, is that I also like science, engineering, etc.. My post today joins two fields that interest me: music and robotics.

Take a look at the amazing work that this guy did with a bunch of step motors, solenoids, scanners and printers, and some real instruments.

Neat uh? You’re not that into Marilyn Manson? I’ll leave you then a cover of the most famous Gotye song, Somebody That I Used to Know.

You just have to love the old Scanjet singing Gotye’s lines!

The last but not the least, here‘s a treat for Ganço, as he seems to love to dance to this song, and another to all the Queen fans out there! There’s a lot more where these came from, check them out here.

Revivalism, variations and humans

Retro foreverHumans tend to reinvent themselves. History has a strange tendency to repeat itself too. Put it all together and you get the retro/revivalist/whatever movement of the past decade, where cars like the BMW Mini, the Volkswagen New Beetle or the Chrysler PT Cruiser where recreated (and somewhat successful), bands like Wolfmother, Astra, etc have been born, and many other manifestations of the love for the antique (not old) have been present. I myself, as 60’s/70’s/80’s music lover, don’t have any problem with revivalism, especially when it brings something new to the game. The band that I’m to speak about today has done precisely that – they took 30 years old unpublished songs and refurbished them onto something very enjoyable.

I’m speaking about the short-lived Portuguese  project Humanos (humans in portuguese), who joined together the male fado-singer (remember fado?) Camané, the pop-rock vocalist Manuela Azevedo from the band Clã and the very well know pop-rock singer-songwriter David Fonseca, along with a couple of musicians to complete the band. Their job was to use demo tapes from the late António Variações (variations in portuguese), one of the men that helped the well-built pop genre rise in the Portugal of the 80’s, and that died too soon. Check the geniality of the man in what is probably his best known song, O Corpo é que paga (the body pays it all) or the not-so-known-but-equaly-good Erva Daninha Alastrar.

In 2004, Humanos recorder a full album with previously unreleased songs from Variações, and it was an instant hit. In 2005 they played in one of the most famous concert houses in Portugal, the Coliseu dos Recreios in Lisbon – concert that they recorded for posterity. I absolutely love that show, also because they also made versions of hit songs that Variações had released in his time, like the referred O Corpo é que paga (this time Humanos’ version).

But enough talking. I leave you with two of the songs I like the most from this show, Estou Além and Quero é Viver, hope you like them too!

Pull the plug!

As I said in my previous post, I’ll pull the electricity plug and present some acoustic sounds today. Everybody knows a big rock band that has played an acoustic set sometime. Well, I know at least 5 😀

One of the interesting things in the so-called unplugged concerts is the way bands reinvent themselves in order not to lose the touch of the songs that only overdrive/distortion offers.

There are two bands that really transformed their songs while playing acoustic: Metallica and Nirvana

Amazing, huh? The last song is a cover of a David Bowie‘s song. Other acoustic concerts worth mentioning are Scorpions’ Acoustica or Moonspell’s Sombra.

Astounding Songs, Amazing Covers

With Pedro’s last few posts containing covers by himself or his friends (and also David’s), I decided to show him what real covers are like. No, I’m not making them myself, maybe another time 😛

It is obvious that I’m just messing with him, the covers he posted are very well done, especially considering that they’re home-made. But, when I listen to a cover by a proven artist, I expect to hear something of his own in the version. So, don’t expect to hear here copies note by note, but rather very personal interpretations of some good songs. Some are even better than the originals! But I’ll leave that assessment to you..

I’ll start with a song I thought no one could or would cover, Starless by King Crimson. I came across this version by the Unthanks in Pete Sinfield’s (KC’s old lyricist) facebook page, and I was instantly blown away.
(Covers on the left, originals or most known version on the right) Enjoy 🙂


If any of you wants more information regarding the bands on the left, just leave a comment! Most of them have more amazing covers 🙂