The Seduction of Claude Debussy

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The Seduction of Claude Debussy
Studio album by Art of Noise
Released

June 28, 1999 (UK)

December 1, 1999 (JP)
Recorded 1998-1999
Genre Atmospheric drum and bass, electronica, breakbeat, alternative hip hop
Length 56:42
Label ZTT Records United Kingdom
Universal
UD-53235 United States
Producer Trevor Horn
Anne Dudley
Art of Noise chronology
Below the Waste
(1989)
The Seduction of Claude Debussy
(1999)
And What Have You Done with My Body, God?
(2006)
Professional ratings
Review scores
Source Rating
Allmusic 2.5/5 stars link
Hiponline 7.5/10 stars link
Q 3/5 stars[1]
Salon link

The Seduction of Claude Debussy is a 1999 concept album by Art of Noise, featuring a line-up of Trevor Horn, Anne Dudley, Paul Morley, and Lol Creme. Also appearing on the album are John Hurt, soprano Sally Bradshaw, Rakim, and Donna Lewis. The group blended the music of groundbreaking French impressionist composer Claude Debussy with drum and bass, opera, hip hop, jazz, and narration, and described the album as "the soundtrack to a film that wasn't made about the life of Claude Debussy."[2]

The album was announced in mid-1998 as being due for release by the end of that year.[3] However, it didn't come out until mid-1999. The album was only released on CD and MiniDisc formats. The UK edition was released 28 June 1999. The US edition was released 29 June 1999. The Japan edition was released 1 December 1999.

Track listings[edit]

Standard editions[edit]

The most widely available, commercial editions of the album were released in the UK, US, Canada, and France, and contained these tracks:

  1. "Il Pleure (At the Turn of the Century)" – 8:02
  2. "Born on a Sunday" – 4:40
  3. "Dreaming in Colour" – 6:42
  4. "On Being Blue" – 4:58
  5. "Continued in Colour" – 1:19
  6. "Rapt: In the Evening Air" – 4:21
  7. "Metaforce" – 3:44
  8. "Holy Egoism of Genius" – 7:56
  9. "La Flûte de Pan" – 2:45
  10. "Metaphor on the Floor" – 2:06
  11. "Approximate Mood Swing No. 2" – 2:14
  12. "Pause" – 2:30
  13. "Out of This World [Version 138]" – 5:27

US bonus disc[edit]

The first US edition of the album, released 29 June 1999, was a two-disc set, with the second disc containing the following tracks:

  1. "Metaforce" – 4:55
  2. "Metaforce: The Sighs of a Metaphor" (remix by Roni Size) – 6:37
  3. "Metaforce: The Size of a Metaphor" (remix by Roni Size) – 5:41
  4. "Metaforce: The Beat of a Metaphor" (remix by Rhythm Masters) – 6:54

Japanese edition[edit]

The Japanese edition, released 1 December 1999, was a CD-Extra containing the following audio tracks (some of which are slightly different mixes from the standard edition, despite similar durations):

  1. "Il Pleure (At the Turn of the Century)" – 8:02
  2. "Born on a Sunday" – 4:39
  3. "Dreaming in Colour" – 6:42
  4. "On Being Blue" – 4:58
  5. "Continued in Colour" – 1:20
  6. "Rapt: In the Evening Air" – 4:22
  7. "Metaforce" – 3:43
  8. "Holy Egoism of Genius" – 7:57
  9. "La Flûte de Pan" – 2:45
  10. "Metaphor on the Floor" – 2:05
  11. "Approximate Mood Swing No. 2" – 2:11
  12. "Pause" – 2:29
  13. "Metaforce – The Size of a Metaphor: Mix by Roni Size" – 5:40
  14. "Dreaming: Colour Green (Brothers in Rhythm via Art of Noise)" – 5:22
  15. "Out of This World [Version 138]" – 5:25

The CD-ROM portion of the disc contained the "Metaforce" video in a QuickTime format.

Pre-release promo[edit]

A promotional version, released several months in advance in the US, Canada, and UK (CD-R only in the UK), contained the same tracks in a slightly different sequence and with some mixing differences in "Born on a Sunday" and with "Dreaming in Colour" being one continuous track instead of split into two:

  1. "Il Pleure (At the Turn of the Century)" – 8:03
  2. "Born on a Sunday" – 4:37
  3. "Dreaming in Colour" – 8:33
  4. "On Being Blue" – 5:09
  5. "Rapt: In the Evening Air" – 4:21
  6. "Metaforce" – 3:44
  7. "Holy Egoism of Genius" – 7:56
  8. "La Flûte de Pan" – 2:31
  9. "Out of This World [Version 138]" – 5:16
  10. "Metaphor on the Floor" – 2:06
  11. "Approximate Mood Swing No. 2" – 2:14
  12. "Pause" – 2:31

Reduction[edit]

Reduction, released in 2000, was a limited edition album consisting mainly of outtakes from The Seduction of Claude Debussy. It was available as a separate item in some regions, or as the second disc in a 2-disc set in other regions. Most editions had the following tracks:

  1. "Identity Crisis"
  2. "Motive"
  3. "(New York London Paris) Spleen"
  4. "Saluting the point of no return"
  5. "Man And Boy"
  6. "Information"
  7. "And I Placed My Fingers On Her Eyes As Though I Was Touching The Silent Controls Of A Tv Set"

The version of Reduction in the French 2-disc edition added a remix of "Dreaming in Colour":

  1. "Identity Crisis"
  2. "Motive"
  3. "(New York London Paris) Spleen"
  4. "Saluting the point of no return"
  5. "Man And Boy"
  6. "Information"
  7. "Dreaming: Maroon"
  8. "And I Placed My Fingers On Her Eyes As Though I Was Touching The Silent Controls Of A Tv Set"

Custom CD offer[edit]

From 24 June through 30 September 1999, people who purchased the US edition of The Seduction of Claude Debussy from certain vendors received, by email, a code which could be used to order a custom CD-R containing 5 to 12 (initially, 5 to 10) previously unreleased tracks from the group's early years, with one of three titles, each with its own cover art. The titles available to choose from were as follows:

  • Bashful
  • Belief System
  • An Extra Pulse of Beauty

The tracks available were the following:

  • "A Time to Hear (Who's Listening?)" – 3:34
  • "Who's Afraid (of Scale)" – 4:38
  • "Resonance" – 2:14
  • "Beat Box (Diverted)" – 8:12
  • "Memory Loss" – 1:27
  • "Beat Box (One Made Earlier)" – 2:27
  • "Structure" – 1:14
  • "A Time to Clear (Up)" – 4:19
  • "Beat Box (Diversion)" – 4:09
  • "The Subject Has Moved Left" – 1:46
  • "Closer (to the Edit)" – 6:23
  • "Resin" – 3:20

Personnel[edit]