Oct 5, 2020

A Full On Guide to Full On: Eternal's Mind Odyssey and Felix's It Will Make Me Crazy

Eternal (not that one) and Felix

Next up on Full On: Edition One is Eternal's Mind Odyssey

Eternal was Melbourne club promoter Mark James, who set up the Eternal project with uber massive DJ legend and drag racer Carl Cox. 

Mind Odyssey came out on Warp Records in the UK, with a catalogue number WAP 27 which places it at around the same time as Polygon Window's Surfing On Sine Waves. This makes him proper techno royalty.

Pop this in your ears:

This Eternal is not to be confused with 1990s r'n'b popsters Eternal who wanted to "be the only one, the only one". 

Having said that, Mark has his pop side: he was in a band called Bass Culture with his then girlfriend Gina Gardiner, who later had a big Eurovision hit as Gina G with the appalling Ooh Aah... Just a Little Bit. Gosh, is this what it's like to write a gossip column?

Eternal would be the star of this blog post, but next up on the Full On track listing is Felix. 

The track is Felix's second biggest hit It Will Make Me Crazy, remixed by Rollo of Faithless fame. Listen here:

If Mark James is techno royalty, in the world of Euro-flavoured progressive house Felix is even bigger: a huge pulsating techno God larger than the known universe.

That's not to say Felix was more successful: James' career is huge. But the Felix sound summed up the Full On experience for me. Big cheesy chords, big housey vocals, super-sharp snare clicks, moody minor chords, simplicity throughout. 

It has to be said, this did sound a lot like his biggest hit Don't You Want Me, and the album was very samey. But if it was a formula, it was such a satisfying formula, and I got the impression that a lot of people were copying the Felix sound. Including me at the time on my little Korg keyboard.

Stylistically, Felix's sound isn't a hundred miles away from 2 Unlimited, whose career was taking off at the time of Full On. 2 Unlimited were much bouncier and stoopider, and had far less credibility. 

The lyrics are hugely different for a start. Here's the words for It Will Make Me Crazy:

It will make me crazy!
It will make me crazy!
It will make me crazy!
It will make me crazy!

And here are the lyrics to 2 Unlimited's Get Ready For This:


See? Totally different. 

Incidentally, and sorry to keep bouncing between the two Felix singles, but Don't You Want Me hit the UK top ten twice, and then charted a third time when it was used in a Tango advert. 

Felix was born in Chelmsford in Essex, as was Squarepusher, Ceephax Acid Crew, Hazell Dean, Sarah from St Etienne, Grayson chuffing Perry, and, er, the drummer from McFly. There's something in the water in Chelmsford.

What does this all say about Full On and its significance for 1990s dance music? I dunno: I stopped paying attention around about Gina G.

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