Apollo Four Forty – Electro Glide In Blue (1997)

FrontCover1A ’90s dance act unafraid to throw a growing variety of styles (and samples) into the mix, Apollo 440 hit the British Top Ten in 1997 by sampling Van Halen for the single “Ain’t Talkin’ Bout Dub,” and big-band drummer Gene Krupa for “Krupa.” The group was formed in 1991 by Howard Gray (a former studio engineer), his brother Trevor, classically trained on the piano, and their Liverpool schoolmate Noko, formerly the guitarist in Howard Devoto’s Luxuria. The group was initially influenced by Britain’s acid-house explosion, and worked as remixers (sometimes under the name Stealthsonic Orchestra) for U2, EMF and Shabba Ranks before making the leap to actual recording. The single “Astral America” appeared on the group’s own Stealth Sonic Records in 1993, followed by club hits like “(Don’t Fear) The Reaper” and “Krupa,” both of which used an often formulaic hook borrowed from obvious musical classics of the past. Apollo 440’s debut album, Millennium Fever, appeared in 1995, followed two years later by Electro Glide in Blue. The group resurfaced in early 2000 with Getting High on Your Own Supply. ( by John Bush)

Apollo440_01Electro Glide in Blue is the second album by the British electronic band Apollo 440. The album features Charles Bukowski, Billy Mackenzie and a tribute to Gene Krupa; all three of whom had died by the time of the album’s release.

On the day that Princess Diana died, BBC Radio One suspended its regular schedule out of respect and spent the day playing more understated music; the track Stealth Mass in F#m was played several times.

The soundtrack for the American comedy thriller film, Homegrown used “Electro Glide in Blue”.[2]

The title of the album, and of the song, is a reference to the movie Electra Glide in Blue. (by wikipedia)

Apollo440_02A more satisfying album than their previous Sony effort, Electro Glide in Blue sees Apollo 440 moving closer to straight-ahead techno and away from commercial pop, a good move considering the electronic atmosphere of the times. Whether it’s the Sony Playstation video-game track “Rapid Racer” or an incredibly well-done duet with former Associates vocalist Billy Mackenzie on “Pain in Any Language,” Apollo 440 proves they’re no strangers to the dancefloor. (by John Bush)


All instruments: Trevor Gray – Howard Gray – Noko – Ewan MacFarlane – Cliff Hewitt –  Michael Cusick – Ashley Krajewski
Keith Holden (harmonica on 03.)
Billy Mackenzie (vocals on 10.)

01. Stealth Overture (T.Gray/E.Gray/Noko) 1.00
02. Ain’t Talkin’ ’bout Dub (E. van Halen/A. van Halen/Anthony/Roth/Noko) 4.30
03. Altamont Super-Highway Revisited (Noko) 6.33
04. Electro Glide in Blue (T.Gray/H.Gray/MacFarlane) 8.36
05. Vanishing Point (Noko) 7.27
06. Tears Of The Gods (Bukowski/Noko/T.Gray/H.Gray/Creaux) 6.18
07. Carrera Rapida (Theme from “Rapid Racer”) (Noko/T.Gray/H.Gray/Hoxley) 6.48
08. Krupa (Noko/T.Gray/H.Gray) 6.15
09. White Man’s Throat (Noko/H.Gray/Hoxley) 4.54
10. Pain In Any Language (Noko/MacKenzie) 8.40
11. Stealth Mass in F#m (T.Gray/E.Gray) 6.35


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