Death in Vegas

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Death in Vegas
Simon Hanson death in Vegas.png
Background information
Origin London, England
Genres Electronica, neo-psychedelia
Years active 1994–present
Labels Drone
Members Richard Fearless
Past members Tim Holmes
Steve Hellier
Dominic Keane
Ian Button
Simon Hanson
Moses Kirkland
Terry Miles
Danny Hammond
Mat Flint
Seamus Beaghen
Dave Neale

Death in Vegas are an English electronic music group, headed up by Richard Fearless.[1] Influenced by a wide range of musical genres including psychedelic rock, electronica, krautrock, dub and industrial, the band's sound is constantly changing, moving between live rock sounds, electronica and minimal techno. The band was formed in 1994 by Fearless and Steve Hellier and signed to Concrete Records under the name of "Dead Elvis". However, there was an Irish record label of the same name at the time, and Dead Elvis became the title of their first album instead.

History[edit]

Dead Elvis[edit]

The first album, Dead Elvis, was a mixture of many musical genres, although most of the tracks are predominantly based in electronica. Shortly after the release of the album, Hellier left the band and was replaced by Tim Holmes, who had already been involved with mixing and engineering tracks on Dead Elvis.[1]

The Contino Sessions[edit]

The band's second album, The Contino Sessions (1999), marked a slight change in direction with more attention to live instrumentation than their first and the inclusion of guest vocalists (including Dot Allison, Bobby Gillespie, Iggy Pop, and Jim Reid).[1] Although predominantly rock-influenced, the album still retained some electronic elements, in particular the opening track "Dirge" with its drum machine-based rhythm track. "Dirge" was featured on a Levi's jeans commercial, as well as the second installment of the Blair Witch Project, and was used in the trailer for the 2006 film The Black Dahlia. The song was also used in the trailer for the 2013 film Cheap Thrills. The song was also used at the end of the 2009 remake of The Last House on the Left, near the end of the Being Human episode "The Longest Day", and in the second episode of season two of Misfits. Along with "Aisha" (with vocals from Iggy Pop), "Dirge" helped the band gain more recognition, culminating in a Mercury Music Prize nomination in 2000. The song Dirge was subject of a lawsuit by the band Five or Six, as it borrowed extensively from their song "Another Reason". The matter was settled with Five or Six receiving writing credit for Dirge. "Aisha" was a top 10 hit in the UK and also featured in the PlayStation 2 title Gran Turismo 3: A-Spec.[2]

Scorpio Rising[edit]

In September 2002, the band released their third album, Scorpio Rising, after almost a three-year gap. During their time off, the band had toured and briefly returned to their techno roots with the track "Scorpio", which, although not appearing on any album, was included as the B-side of "Hands Around My Throat", the first single from Scorpio Rising. Scorpio Rising takes its name from the cult avant-garde film of the same name by Kenneth Anger. The lyrics of the title track (featuring vocals from Liam Gallagher) reflected the controversial nature of Anger's film. It also continued to attract attention from advertisers and filmmakers with "Hands Around My Throat" being used in a Sony Ericsson advert and appearing on the soundtrack to The Animatrix, while the track "Girls" was used on the soundtracks to Sofia Coppola's Lost in Translation and Angela Robinson's D.E.B.S.,[3] as well as in an episode of the TV show Veronica Mars and a commercial for BBC's most recent production of Sense and Sensibility. This was their last studio album for Concrete Records. Concrete released a best-of album, entitled Milk It, in 2004.

Satan's Circus[edit]

Death in Vegas set up their own label, Drone Records, and released their fourth album, Satan's Circus, in 2004.

The melody of Kraftwerk's "Trans-Europe Express" is featured in the track "Zugaga". Unlike the previous two albums, Satan's Circus did not feature any guest vocalists. The album was also released as a limited edition double pack including a live CD, recorded on the Scorpio Rising tour at the Brixton Academy, London.

Trans-Love Energies[edit]

The band released their fifth studio album, Trans-Love Energies, on 26 September 2011 in the UK. The album featured vocals by Katie Stelmanis of Austra and Richard Fearless.

Transmission[edit]

Death in Vegas' sixth studio album was released on May 27, 2016 on Fearless' label, Drone. The album features vocals by writer and porn star Sasha Grey.

Work for other acts[edit]

Away from Death in Vegas, Ian Button has produced various upcoming acts including Extradition Order, Char Johnson, the Beat Maras, David Cronenberg's Wife and Paul Hawkins. Button plays drums in Hawkins's backing band Thee Awkward Silences and also in D.I.V bassist Mat Flint's band Deep Cut, as well as playing guitar for Dot Allison. Button releases his own material under the name of the Anthony Anderson Project and is credited as Anthony Anderson on Dead Elvis.

Keyboardist Terry Miles has also played with Bernard Butler, Denim and Go Kart Mozart (the latter both fronted by former Felt frontman Lawrence Hayward).

Bassist Mat Flint sang and played guitar in early 1990s indie band Revolver, and is currently guitarist in Deep Cut.

Members[edit]

Current members[edit]

  • Richard Fearless - producer, writer, electronics (1994-present)

Former members[edit]

  • Tim Holmes - co-production, engineering, mixing (1996-2004)
  • Steve Helier - co-production, engineering, mixing (1996-1999)
  • Ian Button - guitar (1996-2011)
  • Terry Miles - keyboards (2002-2004)
  • Danny Hammond - guitar (2002-2004)
  • Seamus Beaghen - keyboards (1996-2002)
  • Mat Flint - bass (1996-2005, 2011)
  • Dave Neale - drums (2011)
  • Dominic Keane - bass (2011)
  • Simon Hanson (Squeeze, Planet Funk) - drums (1996-2004)

Discography[edit]

Studio albums[edit]

Year Album details Peak chart positions
UK
[4]
FRA
[5]
NOR
[6]
1997 Dead Elvis
  • Released: 10 March 1997
  • Label: Concrete
52
1999 The Contino Sessions
  • Released: 13 September 1999
  • Label: Concrete
19 72 39
2002 Scorpio Rising
  • Released: 16 September 2002
  • Label: Concrete
19 22 22
2004 Satan's Circus 117 79
2011 Trans-Love Energies
  • Released: 26 September 2011
  • Label: Portobello
57 141
2016 Transmission

Compilation albums[edit]

Singles[edit]

Year Single Peak chart positions Album
UK
[7]
ITA
[8]
1996 "Dirt" 79 Dead Elvis
"Rocco" 84
1997 "Rekkit" 91
"Twist And Crawl" 81
"Dirt (Slayer mix)" 61
"Rocco" (reissue) 51
1999 "Dirge" (feat. Dot Allison) 135 The Contino Sessions
"Neptune City"
2000 "Aisha" (feat. Iggy Pop) 9
"Dirge (Slam mix)" (feat. Dot Allison) 24
"One More Time" (feat. Bobby Gillespie) 163 single only
2002 "Hands Around My Throat" (feat. Nicola Kuperus) 36 Scorpio Rising
"Scorpio Rising" (with Liam Gallagher) 14 30
2016 "You Disco I Freak" (feat. Sasha Grey) Transmission
"—" denotes releases that did not chart or were not released.

References[edit]

  1. ^ a b c Strong, Martin C. (2000). The Great Rock Discography (5th ed.). Edinburgh: Mojo Books. p. 250. ISBN 1-84195-017-3. 
  2. ^ Roberts, David (2006). British Hit Singles & Albums (19th ed.). London: Guinness World Records Limited. p. 146. ISBN 1-904994-10-5. 
  3. ^ "MusicBrainz D.E.B.S. soundtrack page". Musicbrainz.org. Retrieved 2014-04-17. 
  4. ^ "The Official Charts Company - Death in Vegas". The Official Charts Company. 5 May 2013. 
  5. ^ Steffen Hung. "Les charts français". lescharts.com. Retrieved 2012-10-05. 
  6. ^ Steffen Hung. "Norwegian charts portal". norwegiancharts.com. Archived from the original on 4 March 2016. Retrieved 2012-10-05. 
  7. ^ "Death In Vegas - UK Chart". The Official Charts Company. Retrieved 2 March 2015. 
  8. ^ "Death In Vegas - Italian Chart". italiancharts.com. Archived from the original on 2 April 2015. Retrieved 2 March 2015. 

External links[edit]

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