12.25.2005


*Jon Brion
Unless you've been living under a rock this year, you've witnessed the magic of Jon Brion's production. Kanye West's breakthrough hit "Golddigger" has been everywhere you turn. His entire album, Late Registration, has been ranked in the top 10, many times #1, for this years best albums. It has even been nominated for a Grammy, in the "Album of the Year" category. Then there's Fiona Apple's Extraordinary Machine, ranked #4 in Rolling Stone's Top 50 of 2005. Many are unaware of the story behind EM, which was originally began in spring of 2002, when Apple spoke with Brion about making a new album. Brion, at the time, was working on the score for Punch Drunk Love, and in the middle of greiving. His 5 year relationship with comedian Mary Lynn Rajskub (star of Punch Drunk Love) had abruptly ended during the shooting of the film. Brion, producer of Apple's Tidal and When the Pawn..., begged Apple to let him help with her new material. "Please, please make another album" begged Brion, "I need work that can save me." Brion went on to produce what was the original version of Extraordinary Machine, which was shelved by Sony, deeming it unmarketable. Fiona re-recorded the album with producer Mike Elizondo, keeping only two of the original Brion versions for the final versions of EM. In early 2005, the "bootlegged" (Jon Brion's) version of Extraordinary Machine leaked onto the internet, gaining a cult following. The album was officially released on October 4th, featuring a good portion of the re-recorded tracks. Some have looked deeper into the album, looking for hidden clues, perhaps commentary on Sony's reaction to the album. In "Please Please Please" Apple sings “No more melodies/They lack impact/They’re pretty/They’ve been made up already." It is a major misfortune for the general public not to be exposed to such an amazing album, and only being offered a stripped away, watered down version of the original. Regardless, Jon Brion will remain an amazing musician and producer.

"Kanye West - "Gone (featuring Consequence & Cam'ron"
"Kanye West - "Addiction"

*note:
I'm doing my best to find the Jon Brion version of Extraordinary Machine uploaded online to post. Worst comes to worst I will upload it myself. Either way, it'll get posted eventually.

4 comments:

matt said...

great Brion post. love the photo header for your blog. keep up the good work.

Anonymous said...

I have spent days looking for the Brion version, and all I've found is a thousand dead links. I'd be undyingly grateful if you would post it!

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