It was a fun song which featured an infectious lyric through a metallic voice. It gained popularity thanks to it featuring in a trouser advert. Back then I was just a child, and never heard the full thing until many years later. Advert’s with catchy lyrics isn’t anything new, in fact to some degree, they can be rather annoying! I remember at school, when classmates thought that the Mazda ‘Zoom Zoom Zoom‘ advert was the best thing going; or even worse, the ‘What Sit’s on your Wotsits?‘ advert. These were not the only ones, and I could list more, but I would rather not remember those troublesome TV days…..or school!
Spaceman was a song by Babylon Zoo; considered by many these days to be a one hit wonder, this song did achieve a UK Number 1 spot, but all subsequent releases from the band didn’t get anywhere as close. I remember this song when it first came out, and I too was hypnotised by its metallic lyrics during the Levi’s advert through which it gained its popularity. It was a fun sound and one that was rather infectious to enjoy. Babylon Zoo did release other singles, but the only really notable one was Animal Army, which funnily enough made its debut at a similar time to the film Jumanji. It was about a decade later that I actually looked back on that song, and heard it all the way through for the first time, and when I think on it now, it could be argued that it was an accidental hit!
Ok, the song starts out strong with its hypnotic and space sounding effects and comes in with its key lyrics: “Spaceman I always wanted you to go into space man!” But then it slows right down, and the tune goes weird. It sounds like an entirely different song. It carries some powerful lyrics, but it sounds like a trip. It sounds like the singer; Jas Mann, has gone into a strange psychedelic phase. The song does continually feature the lyrics “Spaceman I always wanted you to go into space man”, but at a much slower rate. Eventually though it does pick back up again into the high-speed voiced aliens for just the last bit.
The song is an accidental hit because of that beginning and end. It’s a very infectious piece, but in those two barely thirds is where this song’s popularity arose from, and if it had just been that, then maybe it could have gone stratospheric. But despite that though, the slow part of this song is not all that bad; because if you want something catch and slow with a good level of low deep rock, that in itself is very catchy. In fact, it’s a song that since hearing it all the way through once before, I have come back to listen to again on multiple occasions. Before writing this post I was singing the slower “Spaceman, I always wanted you to go into space man” lyrics to myself. While I do like that opening and closing sound effects, there is something real to enjoy about this song when you get past that.
Altogether it is a very enjoyable song, and while it may lose its charm to the greater many by featuring a central piece that to them feel it shouldn’t be there; to those who can get past that, and just let the song speak for itself, can find something just as special, if not more.