If you were coming up in the days when albums couldn’t be downloaded at the click of a button, you definitely weren’t coming up in the days when obscure horror flicks could be obtained just as easily. Without wanting to get sidetracked into a “kids these days” rant, there were few things more exciting to a teenager high on industrial in the mid-’90s than renting a schlocky old zombie or serial killer flick and suddenly recognizing a particular line of dialogue or shriek from a beloved industrial tune. Samples, as well as providing extra texture and atmosphere to tracks, represented a sort of secret handshake or communication from bands to their audiences. “Oh man, the guys in Von Neumann Infantry watch Full Moon movies, too? Fuckin’ sweet!”
That said, Matt from Caustic is right: it’s time to stop sampling Full Metal Jacket. In fact, there are plenty of films, all great in their own right, which industrial bands really need to stop going to the well for. I’ll list some of those, then break down some newer flicks which we think could serve as some great sample bait.
(This post is of course dedicated to the memory of the classic sloth.org Sample Source List: abandoned, but not forgotten.)
“Disconnect Me” – Sample Sources To Retire
The grand-daddy of them all. Whether it’s either version of the “I want more life” line, some passages of Vangelis’ opening fanfare, or, of course, Rutger Hauer’s monologue, I doubt there’s a moment of this film which hasn’t been jacked by someone at some point. As much as it pains me to say this about my favourite film, enough is enough.
“Horror…has a face. And you must make a friend of horror. But you mustn’t wear out that friendship by constantly revisiting its greatest hits, lest it lose its gripping existential terror and gain all the banality of your roommate who never cleans the bathroom and still owes you fifty bucks. Smells like…complacency.”
“Dance, motherfucker!” We’ve all danced to that motherfucker countless times, whether in tracks by Ministry, Doubting Thomas, or VNV (or Absent Minded, apparently, who I’ll cop to never having heard of – expect Alex to give a detailed breakdown of how awesome they were in a near-future installment of 199X!).
Okay, Network itself isn’t one of the most heavily-sampled films, it’s just one of the most disproportionately sampled ones. Paddy Chayefsky’s script is a masterpiece of finely wrought, sardonic social criticism, but all that ever gets yoinked from it is Howard Beale’s infamous “I’m as mad as hell” speech (Snog’s “Corporate Slave” being a notable exception). Boo. (Let’s just set aside the fact that, much like Fight Club, the film’s broader messages and subtler critiques are lost when its messianic ranting is taken out of context.)
The Alien franchise rules. I know it. You know it. Dogs know it. Dialogue from the films has been so heavily sampled that FLA, 242, and Meat Beat all opted to sample equally recognizable sound effects instead. One of the biggest acts in this scene jacked their logo from it twenty years ago. It’s done. In the words of Vincent K. McMahon, let it be over. Let it be over!
“Long Live The New Flesh” – Fresh Sample Bait
Hobo With A Shotgun
Nearly thirty years after seeing things us people wouldn’t believe, Rutger Hauer makes a bid to reclaim his pile atop the sample heap. Sure, there are plenty of awesome one liners like “I’m gonna sleep in your bloody carcass tonight” and “I have to wash this guy’s ass off my face,” but there’s also poignant reflection to be found in this Canadian grindhouse masterpiece: “You can’t solve all the world’s problems with a shotgun.” “…It’s all I know.” Breathtaking.
I’m pretty sure Grendel and The Retrosic could each get an album’s worth of samples without any overlap just from this scene alone:
Punisher: War Zone
Ray Stevenson’s iteration of Frank Castle is nothing if not catholic in the selection of targets for his particularly over-the-top brand of vigilante justice: “Sometimes I’d like to get my hands on God.” Hard as hell.
Rorschach’s nigh-psychopathic, affectless misanthropy is already sympatico with a large portion of industrial’s current lyrical content, and Jackie Earle Haley’s gravely delivery is the perfect accompaniment to a synths-only bridge before a big, beat-heavy chorus comes crashing back in. “Man goes to doctor. Says he’s depressed. Says life is harsh and cruel. Says he feels all alone in a threatening world. Doctor says, ‘Treatment is simple. The great band Velvet Acid Christ is in town tonight. Go see them. That should pick you up.’ Man bursts into tears. Says, ‘But doctor…I am Bryan Erickson.’ Good joke. Everybody laugh.”
Got another movie yr sick of hearing while just trying to listen to the new Die Sektor record in peace fer chrissakes? Wanna plug the awesomely gory and quotable flick you just watched this weekend? Let us know in the comments!
I try to avoid sampling dialogue from well-tread sources….my personal favourite moment was sampling dialogue from “Xanadu” twice in the same song. 😉
Nice! A friend in high school used “Why are you always wearing black?” from “What About Bob?”, which I thought was cute.
“than renting a schlocky old zombie or serial killer flick and suddenly recognizing a particular line of dialogue or shriek from a beloved industrial tune.”
Shit, I still get a kick out of showing people Shadow of a Doubt and watching their reactions to “They’re alive, they’re human beings.”
I’m actually surprised that The Matrix series isn’t on here (not because i think you guys overlooked it). I would’ve thought that, that too would been sucked dry.
I remember Deathline sampled it on their track “Destroy!”, but nothing else pops to mind. This bears further investigation.
i could’ve sworn that listening to a few VAC tracks basically summed up the first movie… but it’s been, well, many a year now and my actual catalogue of VAC tunes is limited to samplers.
I’m painting with a bit of a broad stroke of course, as in my head it’s perpetually the late 90’s / early 2000 and poking fun at VAC’s expense is still cool and relevant.
Jokes at the expense of VAC will NEVER go out of style. 😉
Cool article Bruce. 🙂 A few years back, I was playing around with sample-heavy sets made on computer around some themes. I was pretty happy with that I found an audiobook for “Canticle for Leibowitz” to pillage and rejig. I’d admit to shaking down Mad Max and one of the Planet of the Apes films too, though.
Nice! I’m a fan of sampling audiobooks and “Canticle” would be a doozy.
Videodrome and Jacob’s Ladder as well.
What about the Hellraiser movies?? I’m surprised they’re not on the list…
Oh, good call. Looks like a Hellraiser fan has even set up a page listing sample uses (though they’ve missed the “Fascist Jock Itch” one): http://www.vexen.co.uk/hellraiser/samples.html