Mixed Demos

 
first published: 11-03-2005 / last update: 18-03-2005

Overview

These are unreleased studio recordings that can't be properly dated or that do not belong to a specific album. 

Songs

Dos Amigos

date: probably '90s
length: 2.38 / soundquality: excellent

This was written and performed by Henk as background music for a documentary. It was released as an mp3 through the Nits website. The song consists of moody slow synths, very basic percussion, Spanish guitar and some children's voice samples saying 'Dos Amigos' and some other Spanish words. This is a very pleasant song to listen to, but there is almost no connection to 'normal' Nits music.

Eikehout

date: 1984
length: 2.46 / soundquality: excellent, but a bit muddled

This is a weird one.. It's not really a Nits song, but a single released by Robert Jan Stipstogether with a Lebanese person under the name Anotov Theater. The lyrics, which are often hard to understand, are about the Dutch province Limburg, but the song is completely sung and played in Arabian style. It features a girl singing the main lyrics and a men's choir singing the chorus. The music is based on a busy drum computer-like rhythm and many layered Arabian synth melodies. Lyrics include the lines 'Eikenhout is eikenhout. eikenhout is hout' (Oakwood is oakwood. Oakwood is wood) and 'Limburg mijn Vaderland' (Limburg is my Fatherland). 

Horror From A To Z (Part One)

date: could be '80s or early '90s
length: 2.37 / soundquality:
very good, there is some tape hiss obscure the more soft sounds.

A solo performance by Rob. It's basically a drum solo with a lot of varying percussion effects. This might have been written for a documentary soundtrack.

Horror From A To Z (Part Two)

date: could be '80s or early '90s
length: 3.05 / soundquality:
very good, there is some tape hiss obscure the more soft sounds.

Another solo performance by Rob. It uses different sounds and rhythms than part one, they mostly are a bit more wild and loud. There are sampled voices of (non-understandable) screaming and whispering people audible that take over the song towards the end. These songs might be from 1983/1984, since there is a song on the tape in between them from that era. The varied percussion indicates that they could also be from much later.

The Knife

date: probably  '90s
length: 2.46 / soundquality: excellent

This is a solo composition by Rob that was recorded for use as background music for a documentary. It was available as an mp3 through the official Nits website. The song is basically made up from various alienating, sweeping and echo-y sound effects. 

Master My Moods

date: probably 1984
length: 3.52 / soundquality: very good

A beautiful, typical melancholic Michiel Peters song. From the sound of it I think it's demo from the Adieu, Sweet Bahnhof period. It sounds a bit similar to some other songs (e.g. Villa Homesick) and maybe that's the reason why it remained unreleased. The music is mainly synth based in the verses with long soft chords and a simple synth bass. The choruses have a more intense feel to them and the electric guitar joins in playing some short touches. Michiel's singing is similar to songs like Infant King. Henk joins in during the choruses. A nice extended bridge section links two choruses towards the end. 

Nieuwjaarswens Uit China

date: recorded in 1982 for distribution near new year's eve 1982-1983.
length: 2.38 / soundquality: excellent

This is a funny recording the band made for people of their record company. The Dutch spoken lyrics are a New Year's wish from China with several references to communism and the Great Leader. Henk looks back on 1982 with all their European travels and he mentions at the end that Robert Jan will stay with the band. The music is mainly a bunch of a simple, slow drum beat with Chinese sounding synth melodies and voices with Henk's spoken text over it.

Lyrics:

Nieuwjaarswens Uit China

Vanuit het hart van Rood China wensen de kameraden van de Nits eenieder een voorspoedig nieuwjaar. Wij zijn op dit moment in ťťn van de geavanceerde tweesporenstudio's in Peking bezig aan de opnames voor ons nieuwe album. Dit alles natuurlijk onder streng toezicht van de Grote Roerganger. 

Wij kijken even terug. 1982 is een jaar vol enerverende reizen geweest: Frankrijk, Duitsland, Zwitserland, Zweden, Denemarken, BelgiŽ en Finland staan nu volgeprikt met vlaggetjes op de wereldkaart in ons kantoor. 

Dat Red Tape de rode band zou zijn kon niemand toen vermoeden, maar zie hier de culturele uitwisseling bracht ons hier in China.

Ik vrees dat we weer uit de lucht moeten, de Grote roerganger kijkt streng op zijn Japanse horloge met ingebouwde 'sound of music' en ik kan allen nog vertellen dat kameraad Stips op hoog bevel de Nits blijft versterken en dat iedereen zijn ideeŽn voorlopig in de daarvoor bestemde bus kan stoppen. Hetgeen natuurlijk een belachelijke Westerse luxe is volgens de Roerganger.

Wij hebben vuurwerk genoeg en wensen de kameraden van CBS een goed 1983 met discipline en arbeidsvreugde.

Translated lyrics:

New Year's Wish From china

The comrades of the Nits wish everyone a good new year from the heart of Red China. At this moment we are recording our new album in one of the most advanced two track studios in Beijing. Everything under strict supervision from the Great Leader of course.

Let's look back. 1982 was a year filled with exciting travels: France, Germany, Switzerland, Sweden, Denmark, Belgium and Finland are now filled with little flags on the world map in our office.

Nobody could then have imagined that Red Tape would literally mean a red bond, but look here: the cultural exchange brought us here in China.

I fear we have to end this transmission, the Great Leader is looking sternly to his Japanese watch with inbuilt 'sound of music' and I can only tell you that under high orders comrade Stips will keep reinforcing the Nits and that everyone can deposit their ideas in the appropriate box. This is of course a ridiculous Western luxury according to the Great Leader.

We have enough fireworks and wish the comrades from CBS a good 1983 with discipline and work joy.

Translated (mistakes and all) by Dennis Versteeg

Paint It Black

date: probably 1987-1988
length: approx. 20 minutes / soundquality: excellent

This is not exactly a demo, but more something like a studio jam or a rehearsal. It's the band playing around for about 20 minutes with the famous Rolling stones classic. The song goes through many changes. Judging from the style and sound I guess it's from 1987-1988. Great to hear this insight in the band fooling around in the studio.

The Painter And The Model

date: probably mid to late '80s
length: 2.18 / soundquality: very good

A gentle ballad sung by Henk over a piano, percussion, synth bass and guitar backing. Henk also sings backing harmonies. It's a very pretty tune with some nice vocal variations over the rather constant backing. Near the end Henk starts whistling, but that doesn't sound very well in my opinion, but it's definitely a song that would deserve some kind of release in one way or another (Quest2?).

Lyrics:

Far away in a town
Lives a man in a room
No-one remembers his name
No-one remembers his name today

Naked girl sitting still
She was cold
<unintelligable part>
He still remembers her name
He still remembers her name today

Upstairs in the living room
He looks down at the dirty street
Upstairs in the living room
He looks down at the dirty street

And no-one remembers her name
He still remembers her name today

Tequila

date: probably late '80s
length: 1.06 / soundquality: very good

It's hard to determine if this is a live or a studio recording. It sounds like an improvised cover version of this famous song. The song is mostly instrumental synth parts over a busy, latin percussion rhythm. Henk shouts 'Tequila' every now and then. Short and funny.

Work From Memory

date: probably 1983/1984
length: 4.39 / soundquality:
very good

A typical Henk song from the Kilo or Adieu period. My best bet would be that it's an outtake from Adieu, Sweet Bahnhof. The song up tempo and synth based, but it also features some nice electric rhythm guitar. One little melody that pops up about half way through reminds me of Dapperstreet. Henk's singing is enthusiastic, even though the lyrics don't seem to be completely finished yet. There are several instrumental parts to the song, but nothing special occurs in them. If developed a bit further, this would not have sounded out of place on an official release from that period.