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Monday, June 14, 2010

88. "Outlaw" by Mission of Burma

If nothing else, my record collection is, for the most part, acquitting itself fairly well in term of what The Machine has selected for me. There are many bands whose records might equally well be found in good and bad music libraries; Mission of Burma is not such a band.

This song, doubtless like numerous other Burma tunes, was extremely difficult to figure out, and then, having sort of done so, translate to the acoustic idiom. I was hoping to get it into some kind of spooky mountain-minor murder ballad shape, but neither my will nor my skill could quite take it there. The noisy guitar was a last minute concession... it's actually not a second guitar, just a copy of the first one with a cranky effect on it. I tip my hand as to that little trick in case it seems like the second guitar is supposed to be a "lead" track. It ain't, and if it were I would've done a better job of it. But the clock wound down on me, so file this under "Fail", possibly with the subheading "noble" according to your own taste.

Eden, Gen & Rex ~ Chain gang vocals
Rex ~ Everything else


  1. Yeah see this Roger Miller went to music school and all, where they teach you to play those Q-flat minor augmented 13th chords and shit. I'm pretty sure the verses of this are in the key of Beefheart, with a modulation to the key of Gang of Four on the choruses.

  2. Yeah, not easy. In a way it's good that the changes are fast... a number like "All World Cowboy Romance" where all those weird chords are actually sustained so you can, like, hear whether or not they're right. I got to just rush past 'em!