Hook Me into the Zen Machine
January 16, 2011 10:10 AM   Subscribe

Do-Over: What are the chords to the Utopia song, Zen Machine?

I am particularly trying to figure out what Roger Powell is playing on the synthesizer during the chorus. I would be happy with a good approximation, even if it's not EXACTLY what the band is playing.

(The last time I asked this the song was not available on YouTube.)
posted by wittgenstein to Home & Garden (4 answers total)
I hear dm then am, bm, then Bb. But there are a lot of melodic notes that aren't in the chords proper--6ths and 9ths and such. That's an approximation.
posted by Obscure Reference at 11:47 AM on January 16, 2011

What I thought was Bb is more likely an Eb.
posted by Obscure Reference at 11:54 AM on January 16, 2011

Yeah, the chorus is basically

Dm Bb Am
Dm Eb

but the synth on top of it is playing some notes not quite in those chords. It's hard to hear everything going on from the YouTube recording, but the top note is:

posted by dfan at 5:56 PM on January 17, 2011

That synth part pokes out a bit more in the live version from the Redux '92 CD. Maybe check that out?

(POV and Oblivion are actually getting re-released at the end of this month! ...absolutely the greatest and most slept-on synth-pop albums of all-time.)
posted by mintcake! at 11:19 PM on January 17, 2011

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