After the trio split in 1996, the Black Dog was down to just Ken Downie. He worked with Israeli singer Ofra Haza on the 1998 single “Babylon”.


Before the single, Ken had produced the Music For Adverts” album soon after the split. How much of the album was completed or started before the other two left is not clear. It is an odd album with 26 short tracks and in honesty not very good. It is disjointed (the 26 tracks don’t help) and for the first time, the Black Dog sounded behind the curve, instead of ahead of it.


“Babylon” was written and produced by The Black Dog, Ofra Haza and Bezalel Aloni. Its Middle Eastern sounds and Ofra’s floating voice hark back to The Black Dog’s earlier fascination with ancient civilisations. Sadly, it then got remixed to death and was released in 10 versions.


The promo sleeve had an essay from the Black Dog about the record. Here are some extracts:


“Babylon was an insignificant village until the third millennium BC; one millennium after the Sumerians invented writing, and several millennia after the founding of the earliest agricultural communities in the region.

Hammurabi, a Babylonian king, wrote the first human Laws there, around 1770BC. They were carved into 49 vertical columns and set up on boundary Stelae, so that even the people of the fields could have access to the Law. Many of the Biblical 10 Commandments are, more or less, Hammurabi’s original law codes by another name.

Today, 2000 years after the City was first vilified, the name “Babylon” still conjures up in our minds a vision of opulent Pagan splendour. A vision sadly stained by the decadence, cruelty, and oppression of its later Assyrian owners. Hebrew writers enthusiastically highlighted this portion of the City’s history, and their viewpoint remains prevalent today.

The Black Dog’s view is that the civilisation responsible for the tower of Babel and countless other achievements were a peace loving, tolerant people. They were not the cruel, slave-driving Assyrians they have been falsely labelled as.

With “Babylon” we seek to honour the first of the ancient Pagan Civilisations. Once which was built upon the humane principles of peace, unity, shared common language, and the joys of gardening.


From the promo mixes:

The Black Dog feat Ofra Haza – Babylon (Pirate FM Mix)

The Black Dog feat Ofra Haza – Babylon (Hard As Stele) Jamac Remix

The Black Dog website

Download product

~ by acidted on May 31, 2008.

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