!yadnoM cisuM yppaH or, in forward terms, Happy Music Monday! Today Scott's turning things around and taking a good, hard look at the most scaaaaary of musical options… the dreaded backmasking. In the wrong hands, it's an annoying little game, but in the right hands, it can be kinda neat. For example...
Steve Vai - Whookham
It says something about the talent of Steve Vai that he put together an almost Queen-like song simply by reversing one of his pieces. Of course, playing it normally gives you a rather boring little prayer, which could be why nobody ever condemns this one publicly.
It's catchy, but there's more to come, including Scott's favorite backmasked song. !pumj eht retfa ouy eeS
"Weird" Al Yankovic - I Remember Larry
For all the teasing Al gets, he's long since proven himself as a showman and true musician, a master of nearly every style. So it's no wonder he decide to hide his own version of backmasking in this rarely-played track. Listen to it forward and be underwhelmed and insulted.
Prince - Darling Nikki NSFW in 1983
Obviously you're not gonna find a Prince song online, so I had to use this lovely Princess cover. Thankfully they're kind enough actually cover the famous backmasked part as well (jump to about 3:10 or so) so you get the whole experience! When the original song is flipped you can hear a very polite Prince sing you a little gospel song. Such a polite young man!
The Beatles - Strawberry Fields Forever
This one arguably started it all, when a flippant "cranberry sauce" turned into the clues that unlocked the whole "I buried Paul" controversy for the world. Interestingly enough, play the song backwards and it's still quite pretty, which might have something to do with a couple instrument tracks being reversed on the final forward version. Complex, right? Hey, it was a crazy time.
David Bowie - Move On
"Move On" is a lovely piece of Eno-tinted experimentation from Bowie's famous Berlin Trilogy. It's also a great example of how Bowie's not scared to cannibalize himself in the name of his art. Take a gander at the unreversed version and note how it is, in fact, a backmasked version of an old Mott the Hoople song that Bowie wrote early in his career. This right here is my favorite backmasking. Now, what's yours?
Let us just remind you: some images come from the corresponding Wikipedia page and are here under fair use. Now give us some of your favorite reversals of fortune! And see you next week.