Black Black Heart – 分开旅行 (Travelling Separately)

We all have bands that made an impression on us in those most impressionable years of adolescences. For me (and many of my generation) it was the likes of Nirvana, Pearl Jam, STP, Alice In Chains and pretty much anyone off the Singles and Pump Up The Volume soundtracks.

Thanks to some strict CanCon laws in my homeland, there is also no shortage of nostalgia for Canadian bands that brought me through my angst. Early albums by Hayden, Holly McNarland, Finger Eleven (then Rainbow Buttmonkeys), Our Lady Peace and Moist all have some amount of responsibility for my frequent use of the phrase: “Huh, what’d you say?”

In my time as assistant editor for Canadian Musician magazine, I was fortunate enough to meet a number of these folks, and found out that (with a couple exceptions), they were pretty rad people.

That life and that music seems just a million miles away now. Both in time and distance. So, it was a bit weird yesterday when I was sitting in a taxi and heard a song by Moist’s since-gone-solo (with all the same band members?) frontman, David Usher, on the radio … in Chinese.

Original Black Black Heart’:
Rene Liu Cover:Too slow? Watch it on Tudou.

The song, Black Black Heart, was a hit a few years ago in Canada, and it cropped up once before while I was in Bangkok Chatuchak’s Market back in 2004. This made sense though, as Usher is part Thai, and a following there seemed reasonable. However, a Chinese cover?

After a bit of Baidu’ing and Tudou’ing (ah, new age verbs) I learned that the Chinese version is called 分开旅行, and is performed by Stanley Huang and Rene Liu, whom some may know from the movie A World Without Thieves.

Turns out that basically just the melody and phrase “black black heart” made the cut – the words are completely different, and not just because they’re in Chinese. Whereas Usher is a somewhat gifted lyricist, the cover is not much more than the crappity crap crap pop that fills the Chinese airwaves and pirate CD shops here.

My hopes were dashed. But lets compare anyway:

Black Black Heart – David Usher

Something ugly this way comes
Through my fingers sliding inside
All these blessings all these burns
I’m godless underneath your cover
Search for pleasure search for pain
In this world now I am undying
I unfurl my flag my nation helpless

Black black heart why would you offer more
Why would you make it easier on me to satisfy
I’m on fire I’m rotting to the core
I’m eating all your kings and queens
All your sex and your diamonds

As I begin to lose my grip
On these realities your sending
Taste your mind and taste your sex
I’m naked underneath your cover
Covers lie and we will bend and borrow
With the coming sign
The tide will take the sea will rise and time will rape

Black black heart why would you offer more
Why would you make it easier on me to satisfy
I’m on fire I’m rotting to the core
I’m eating all your kings and queens
All your sex and your diamonds

Black black heart why would you offer more
Why would you make it easier on me to satisfy
I’m on fire I’m rotting to the core
I’m eating all your kings and queens
All your sex and your diamonds
All your sex and your diamonds
All your sex and your diamonds
All your sex and your diamonds
All your sex and your diamonds

And the Chinese version (with help from Adsotrans):

And for anyone that wants to see what the Backdorm Boys have done with it – check it out on Tudou.

It may not have been my long awaited answer to “Where’s the good Chinese music?”, but it did get me wrapped up in exploring YouTube for videos from back in the day, when we all had longer hair and wore more plaid.

8 Responses

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

*