Friday, October 19, 2012

Natural Elements Demos Unreleased Still.

Now here are a couple of interesting items that hit EBay at the same time Chopped Herring released their Lost Demos and Instrumentals EP. This could be directly related to that release, or it could just be a timely coincidence. But either way, it's quite interesting for us Natural Elements fans. Demos! Here's the tracklistings for all three (taken from the auction descriptions):

Left: 1) Bust mine 2) Money and moves  3) We all f@#$%*g high
Center: 1) Live the life 2) Relax 3) Don't sleep 4) Puttin in work
Right: 1) It's a triple team 2) I gots it hard 3) Life ain't fair you only here for a minute 4) Every single day 5) Wishing on a star

Some of these titles are decidedly more recognizable than others... "Bust Mine," for example, is probably their greatest, best known hit; while "We all f@#$%*g high" is more mysterious. It's also worth noting that the tape on the left is specifically labeled as "joints for 97," so we know when that one's from. So let's see exactly how much we can glean from these track-listings, shall we?

As I said, "Bust Mine" is obvious. And the EBay listing description gives us a little extra info to go on: "Bust Mine was the only song to come out on Dolo Records single release." But "Money and moves" sounds familiar, doesn't it? That's probably because the hook to one of their other biggest hits, which just so happened to come out on the same Dolo 12" as "Bust Mine," uses that expression as the body of its chorus. The hook for "Paper Chase" is, "it goes money and moves, moves and money. Gotta make money, 'cause bein' broke ain't funny. On a paper chase, ain't nothin' for free. Everybody got a price; everybody got a fee." Color me cynical, but I think the odds are very high that "Money and moves" is just "Paper Chase," and the seller is wrong about "Bust Mine" being the only previously released song from there. Especially since, except for the middle one, I don't see any song titles written on the tapes. Which makes me think the seller listened to the tapes and guessed on the titles based on the music... and "Money and Moves" would be a very good guess for the title of "Paper Chase," if you didn't already know it.

The next one is an L-Swift solo tape. Here we're told (again in the item description), "Live the life was the only song to come out on a EP 12" single release." That would be absolutely correct if it weren't woefully out of date (remember, these auctions just ended under a week ago). "Puttin' In Work" was on Chopped Herring's 2011 Lost Demos EP, and the other two are on CH's brand new EP.

Now, the description for tape #3 doesn't tell us anything about its songs. But four of those songs are the first four songs on the Lost Demos EP, so not much mystery there.

Of course, without hearing them, any of these songs could, I suppose, be alternate versions. There is,  after all, more than one version of "Life Ain't Fair" floating around out there, as I've covered in a previous Natural E post. And hey, maybe "Moves and Money" isn't "Paper Chase." It probably is, but we can't be totally sure without hearing it.

So I'd love to be able to hear everything and find out what's what. But essentially, we're just left with two songs that are really compelling: "We all f@#$%*g high" and "Wishing on a star." Are these just screwy titles for songs we already know and love? Or are they awesome, never heard before killers? Maybe whoever won them will let us know. Or maybe they're currently being remastered for Chopped Herring's next vinyl release.

P.s. - Also of note is the fact that the same seller had a two-song Last Emperor demo tape up at the same time, which was all produced by Charlemagne. The titles were "Meditation" and "On!" "Meditation" later appeared on his compilation CDs, but I'm not sure what "On!" is...

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