Playlist Notes: Novas 5.2: Alleys That We Run Through Act 2

(previously: Novas 5.2 Act 1)

Novas 5.2: Alleys That We Run Through

Act 2: Flames

I’m a princess carved from marble, smoother than a storm. And the scars that mark my body, they’re silver and gold.

09 Lorde – Yellow Flicker Beat (2014, USA/New Zealand)

I'm a princess carved from marble, smoother than a storm
And the scars that mark my body, they're silver and gold
My blood is a flood of rubies, precious stones
It keeps my veins hot, the fire's found a home in me

I move through town, I'm quiet like a fight
And my necklace is a rope, I tie it and untie it
Now people talk to me but nothing ever hits
So people talk to me and all the voices just burn holes
I'm done with it, huh

This is the start of how it all ever ends
They used to shout my name now they whisper it
I'm speeding up
And this is the red orange yellow flicker beat
Sparking up my heart

We're at the start, the colours disappear
I never watch the stars, there's so much down here
Still I just try
Keep up with the red orange yellow flicker beat
Sparking up my heart

I dream of you but they're not the sweet kind
And the shivers move down my shoulder blades in double time
Ooh now people talk to me, I'm slipping out of reach
Now people talk to me and all their faces blur

But I got my fingers laced together
And I made a little prison
And I'm locking up everyone who ever laid a finger on me

Susan after the riots.

Okay yes Lorde and the Hunger Games theme okay so it’s not quite 1980s New Wave or small bands but in my defense picture the fire burning a hole through space and time and

okay it’s just that they’re really good songs that had the right punk-ish energy I needed to put the rest of mosaic together.

10 The Black Seeds – Fire (2004, New Zealand)

Fire burning out there in the dark
Fire burning out there in the dark

Fire
(it's getting hotter)
burning
(me inside it)
out there
(that's where I wanna be)
in the dark

Fire
(rising higher)
burning
(feeling stronger)
out there
(that's where I wanna see you)
in the dark

Fire
(I can see it)
burning
(in your eyes)
out there
(I can see them dancing)
in the dark

Fire
(I can feel you)
burning
(me inside)
out there
(that's where I wanna see you)
in the dark

Fire burning in your eyes
Oh what a beautiful sight
Fire burning in your eyes
(burning)
Burn through me all night
(all night)

Fire
Fire
Fire
Fire
Fire

Jack after the riots.

Another Kiwi song. Hearing this one on the car radio somewhere mid-2000s and going ‘what IS that??’ And now I’m happy to have found it a home.

I just love this kind of construction and it’s very rare. A phrase that expands into something like an acrostic on each word.

11 Occult Chemistry – Fire (Destroy Create) (1980, England)

Trudging back together, tempers flare
The heat of penetration through your hand to your heart
Heart felt moon flowing taking over the
Blood white sky, shadow
Blood white sky, shadow

Forces magnetic pull
Forces magnetic pull
Heatbeat mystery
Heatbeat mystery
Destroy create
Destroy create

Cling to me gently sweep the body along
Dance of death enchanting, my finger in the light
Hide in your eyes bask in pure emotion now
Blood white sky, shadow
Blood white sky, shadow

Forces magnetic pull
Forces magnetic pull
Heatbeat mystery
Heatbeat mystery
Destroy create
Destroy create

Run into the field head down to your knees
Knees buckling under now the blood pressure down
Fire is raging and your body is a margin of
Blood red sky, shadow
Blood red sky, shadow

Forces magnetic pull
Forces magnetic pull
Heatbeat mystery
Heatbeat mystery
Destroy create
Destroy create

Skin is burned to ashes, scattered to the wind
Return to distant sea through the sky and the trees
The darkness that surrounds you is flowing taking over the
Blood white sky, shadow
Blood white sky, shadow

Memories of the Simulation came flooding back. So many lives. So many ends of the world.

I’m glad this one has become a kind of urban legend because I remember (again, how?) discovering it on a compilation tape. Maybe early 90s, not 80s? Name stuck in the mind because it was shortly after I’d read about the 1919 Theosophical book of the same name.

12 Suicide Squad – New World In The Morning (1980/84, England/Australia)

Everybody talks about a new world in the morning
New world in the morning so they say
I myself don't talk about a new world in the morning
New world in the morning, that's today

And I can feel a new tomorrow coming on
And I don't know why I have to make a song
Everybody talks about a new world in the morning
New world in the morning takes too long

I met a man who had a dream he had sense he was twenty
I met that man when he was eighty-one
He said too many folks just stand and wait until the morning
Don't they know tomorrow never comes

And he would feel a new tomorrow coming on
And when he'd smile his eyes would twinkle like a bomb
Everybody talks about a new world in the morning
New world in the morning takes too long

And I can feel a new tomorrow coming on
And I don't know why I have to make a song
Everybody talks about a new world in the morning
New world in the morning takes too long

Jack makes plans. They might not be good plans.

A cover of a 1970 song by English/Kenyan singer Roger Whittaker, though I’m sure the Whittaker original had ‘his eyes would twinkle up in thought’ and the cover… does not. I think the change improves it, at least with that dash of 80s cynicism.

Perhaps my memory is playing tricks on me but I also have a memory of this one… at least, that cover image (which is from ‘I Hate School’, 1979, a song I don’t remember other than the title).

13 Martha Reeves and the Vandellas – Dancing In The Street (1964, USA)

Calling out around the world
Are you ready for a brand new beat
Summer's here and the time is right
For dancing in the street

They're dancing in Chicago
Down in New Orleans
In New York City

All we need is music, sweet music
There'll be music everywhere
They'll see swinging, swaying, records playing
Dancing in the street

Oh, it doesn't matter what you wear
Just as long as you are there, so come on
Every guy grab a girl
Everywhere around the world
There'll be dancing in the street
They're dancing in the street

This is an invitation across the nation
A chance for folks to meet
They'll see laughter, singing and music swinging
Dancing in the street

Philadelphia, PA
Baltimore and DC now
Can't forget the Motor City

Way down in LA, every day
They're dancing in the street
Let's form a big strong line, get in time
We're dancing in the street
Across the ocean blue, me and you
We're dancing in the street

Fighting fire with music.

And you may ask why I didn’t do the obvious and use the 1985 Bowie/Jagger cover. Wouldn’t that be more authentically 80s? And the answer, for me, is that the 1985 version just isn’t… serious the way the 1964 original is. It’s drowning in the ironic detachment that was the worst side of that decade, about nothing and doing nothing. The original is weaponised, stealth protest music; sweet and melodic yet with a steely edge to the lyrics and that alternating dissonant ‘siren’ tone that never quite resolves, leaving you tensed and keyed up for action. It is a song that knows precisely what it’s doing and takes no prisoners.

14 Oingo Boingo – Wake Up (It’s 1984) (1983, USA)

Wake up, won't you listen to me, won't you listen to me

Big Brother's watching, we watch him back
We see right through his disguise
He tries to scare us with angry words
But we all know that they're lies
Whole world is waiting
Just see the fear in their eyes

Whole world is watching, observing every move
Is it beginning or the end
Just like a chess game but so intense
That I just don't understand
Anticipation
It's much too big to pretend

Wake up it's 1984
Wake up but we've been here before (here before)
Wake up it's 1984
Wake up but we've been here before (here before)

Big Brother's screaming but we don't care
Cause he's got nothing to say
Think of the future, think of the prophecy
Think of the children of today
Big Brother's marching
So we all stand in his way

Open your eyes to your sisters and brothers
Neatly disguised, so far away
Open your heart, try to remember
Two worlds apart, but so close

Wake up it's 1984
Wake up but we've been here before (here before)
Wake up it's 1984
Wake up but we've been here before (here before)

All our lives leading up to this day
Watching and waiting
Wake up, wake up

The underground assembles.

Oingo Boingo was Danny Elfman! Five years before he did that Batman theme for Tim Burton.

I can’t actually see this one being an actual Bond theme – a little too fiddly – but it is so very close. And Bond films have certainly run with much, much worse. (Spectre.)

15 Adele – Skyfall (2012, England)

This is the end
Hold your breath and count to ten
Feel the earth move and then
Hear my heart burst again

For this is the end
I’ve drowned and dreamt this moment
So overdue I owe them
Swept away, I’m stolen

Let the sky fall
When it crumbles
We will stand tall
Face it all together
Let the sky fall
When it crumbles
We will stand tall
Face it all together
At skyfall
At skyfall

Skyfall is where we start
A thousand miles and poles apart
Where worlds collide and days are dark
You may have my number, you can take my name
But you’ll never have my heart

Let the sky fall
When it crumbles
We will stand tall
Face it all together
Let the sky fall
When it crumbles
We will stand tall
Face it all together
At skyfall

Where you go I go
What you see I see
I know I’d never be me
Without the security
Of your loving arms
Keeping me from harm
Put your hand in my hand
And we’ll stand

Susan is betrayed by Jack as the Company closes in.

Mandatory Bond Theme #2!

There’s a very nice rhyme, I think, between ‘This is the start of how it all ever ends’ (Lorde) and ‘This is the end’ (Adele).

16 Jefferson Airplane – Volunteers (1969, USA)

Look what's happening out in the streets
Got a revolution
Got to revolution
Hey I'm dancing down the street
Got a revolution
Got to revolution
Ain't it amazing all the people I meet
Got a revolution
Got to revolution

One generation got old
One generation got sold
This generation got no destination to hold
Pick up the cry

Hey now it's time for you and me
Got a revolution
Got to revolution
Come on now we're marching to the sea
Got a revolution
Got to revolution
Who will take it from you
We will and who are we

We are volunteers of America
Volunteers of America
Volunteers of America
Volunteers of America

The revolution begins.

Another 60s anthem, which is becoming kind of a mini-motif. Sorry / not sorry.

End of Act 2