On 11 February 2019 I set myself the challenging of reading 1001 Songs You Must Hear Before You Die by Robert Dimery (ed.) and following the book’s advice to the letter. I’ve previously read 1001 Films… and started 1001 Albums… but felt 1001 Songs… would be a sensible place to start for what I have in mind here.
My challenge is to read about one song per day and listen to it (YouTube and Spotify, I need you tonight!) before sharing my own thoughts. Some songs I will love, others I’ll hate, and I’m sure there will be those that leave me perplexed but listen to them I shall.
I’ll also try, and most likely fail, to pinpoint the best song from the 1001 on offer but I’m nothing if not foolhardy. Instead of one song, I’m predicting I’ll have about 100 favourites by the end and may have to resort to a Top 10 so far to maintain any semblance of sanity.
So long as I post everyday (including Christmas) then this challenge should come to an end on Wednesday 8 November 2021. Staying with the Barney Stinson theme I am hoping that the whole experience will prove to be…
Leftfield-Lydon – Open Up (1993)
” Open Up” is a song recorded by Leftfield and featuring John Lydon (of Sex Pistols and Public Image Ltd.). It was released as a single on 1 November 1993. The single reached number 13 on the UK Singles Chart and number 39 in both Australia and New Zealand.
We’re staying in the UK today, dear reader, but leaving Manchester and heading south down to London. Formed in 1989, Leftfield were an electronic duo made up of Neil Barnes and Paul Daley. Focusing on performing the music, Leftfield tended to draft in guest vocalists for their songs. We join them in 1993 prior to the release of a debut album. Instead, the group have collaborated with John Lydon of Public Image Ltd, also once Johnny Rotten of Sex Pistols, to work on a new single by the name of Open Up.
Open Up had the music put together first, a painstaking process as Leftfield wanted something worthy of John Lydon’s time. When Lydon came in a lot of the lyrics were improvised and put together in the studio. The track seems to be in relation to making it big in Hollywood as an actor but towards the end it takes a dark turn with Lydon insisting that he wants to take Tinseltown and burn Hollywood to the ground. This isn’t literal of course but upon release Lydon was accused of this being so.
Leftfield is another name I know but, again, I could not name a single song. John Lydon has been on our list in both Sex Pistols and Public Image Ltd so it’s great to see him here again. Open Up has striking vocals from Lydon but the main plaudits have to go to the music which is around 6 minutes or so of electronic extravaganza. I can’t say this is usually my kind of music but I found this particular track absorbing.
Favourite songs so far: