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List of samples used by Boards of Canada

Revision as of 01:39, 26 May 2017 by (talk)

For more detailed info on a particular sample, see the individual song pages.

A Few Old Tunes

  • A tinny, cyclic sound that is possibly part of a drum loop (Spectrum)
  • Two women speaking, presumably on a television show in which a plain-looking person receives a makeover (Light, Clear Hair)
  • A man and a woman breathing heavily, with 1970's music in the background (P:C:)
  • Most vocals from Trapped by Colonel Abrams (Trapped)
  • A commercial for Dirt Devil (a brand of portable vacuum cleaner). Voice over is spoken by a mature-sounding English man: "It's almost like having an upright in the palm of your hand. The Devil is lightweight (Devil), powerful (Devil), has a wide opening (Devil) with a revolving brush... get a Devil." (Devil, Peace-Tony-Devil)
  • Dialogue, applause, and music from an episode of the British television game show Blockbusters, spliced for surreal effect (Blockbusters)
  • The chorus of "Celebration" by Kool & The Gang (The Way You Show)
  • A Sesame Street vignette in which a child sounds out the phrase "I love you" while attempting to write it out; at the end, the child giggles, and two metallic-sounding high notes are heard (I Love U)
  • A drum fill from "Strawberry Fields Forever" by The Beatles (Sequoia)
  • A basic (snare-)kick-kick-snare drum pattern (5.9.78)
  • A vocoded voice, gradually slowing down, saying "... and so you could become very sensitive to everything, you start walking through the studio, you go: 'ah yes, it's going to be a good day, I can feel -'" (Nova Scotia Robots)

Old Tunes Vol. 2

  • The jingle at the end of Iraq Says is taken from a Sesame Street clip: "Wanda The Word Fairy Visits Sesame Street". [1][2]
  • From "Flashback" by Imagination: "We're startin' up, now we're on our way" (We've Started Up)
  • "He's a dream" from the song of the same name by Shandi (We've Started Up)
  • The beginning of the song "Falling in Love Again" by Techno Twins (We've Started Up)
  • "Berceuse" from the Dolly Suite by Gabriel Fauré (Jimbo Rehearsing) (not necessarily a sample, but probably not played by BoC)
  • "I' Real Traditionalist myself of course, because of Orbison, and Holly, and The Fireballs and The String Along, and er, all the things that happen in the studio. I'm so glad to...take care and..." (Dave (I'm A Real Traditionalist))
  • "The royal family should be left in peace!" (Peace-Tony-Devil)
  • A commercial for Frosted Flakes (Peace-Tony-Devil)
  • A commercial for Dirt Devil (a brand of portable vacuum cleaner). Voice over is spoken by a mature-sounding English man: "It's almost like having an upright in the palm of your hand. The Devil is lightweight (Devil), powerful (Devil), has a wide opening (Devil) with a revolving brush...Get a Devil." (Peace-Tony-Devil)
  • Spoken by English-accented voices, presumably from a world news broadcast:
    • Woman: "Iraq says nineteen people died"
    • Man: "We won't know that until a full assessment has taken place in due course" (Iraq Says)
  • The hook from Tony Basil's 1982 hit "Mickey" (Nine-Rubber Wisdom)
  • A bubbly pitch modulation or filter modulation synthesizer effect, followed by a group of people shouting (On A Rolling Sea)
  • The song "Sir Prancelot" by Alan Parker (Sir Prancelot Brainfire)
  • From the 1958 horror film Terror from the Year 5000: "Dad, look at the TV" (Apparatus)
  • An old Amiga module called "Voyager" by Hellraiser (Apparatus)
  • A microtonal synthesizer loop from the ending of "Karn Evil 9, Third Impression" on the album Brain Salad Surgery by Emerson, Lake, and Palmer (Music For Pylons)
  • The snare drum from "When the Levee Breaks" by Led Zeppelin (Music For Pylons) (possible but not confirmed)
  • A "skipping" drum loop (Orange Hexagon Sun, Turquoise Hexagon Sun)

Hi Scores

Music Has The Right To Children

  • A speech sample from the documentary "On the Tracks of the Wild Otter (1983)" narrated by Hugh Miles. (An Eagle in Your Mind)
  • A synthetic-sounding voice saying "I love you" (An Eagle in Your Mind)
  • What sounds like a voice saying "sweat-sweat" (possibly "percussion" constructed using the voice of the girlfriend of one of the members of BoC) (An Eagle in Your Mind)
  • A Sesame Street vignette in which a child sounds out the phrase "I love you" while attempting to write it out. (The Color of the Fire)
  • Chopped-up voices saying "now this is very irresponsible" and, in a Scottish accent, "yer no gonnae" (Telephasic Workshop)
  • A slightly slowed-down male voice saying "bordering Canada" (?) (Telephasic Workshop)
  • A young man shouting "twenty cent" (?) (Telephasic Workshop)
  • The song "Getaway" by Earth, Wind, & Fire (Sixtyten)
  • The song "On Your Face" by Earth, Wind, & Fire (Sixtyten)
  • "There are a lot of different 'me's, you know. There's the mad me, when I get angry." From a Sesame Street segment [reversed] (Sixtyten)
  • What might be a recording from a native American ceremony, including what sounds like someone with a drum (Kaini Industries)
  • Birds whistling outside BoC's studio (Rue the Whirl)
  • The slap bass riff (and possibly drums on the Aquarius single) from the beginning of "Aquarius" from Galt MacDermot's 1979 soundtrack for the film "Hair" (All versions of Aquarius))
  • The word "orange" from a sketch in a vintage Sesame Street episode (All versions of Aquarius)
  • Children's laughter, and the same children saying "yeah, that's right" from a vintage Sesame Street episode (All versions of Aquarius)
  • A sequence of numbers read by a professional-sounding woman's voice (All versions of Aquarius, though the number sequence varies)
  • The same voice that recites the number sequence saying "Orange" (All versions of Aquarius)
  • A chorused male voice singing "I'm listening" (Aquarius (Verison 3))
  • A synthesized male voice saying "sixtyten new aquarius" (Aquarius (Verison 3))
  • A girl saying "We'll sail to the stars." From a Sesame Street segment (All versions of Aquarius)
  • A distorted voice saying "bonds" (Pete Standing Alone)
  • The same voice-over from the BoC Maxima version of One Very Important Thought, but read by the same voice that reads the number sequence from Aquarius, and with "listening to Boards of Canada" in place of "viewing an adult film" (One Very Important Thought on Music Has the Right to Children)
  • Eerie, sustained choral singing thought to have been sampled from Stanley Kubrick's 2001: A Space Odyssey or possibly Norman Jewison's Jesus Christ Superstar (Happy Cycling)
  • A reversed interview with with Jeff Lynne of the Electric Light Orchestra on the subject of ELO's supposed use of backmasked vocals and the resulting controversy (Happy Cycling)
  • Seagulls and a sound like a man singing, rather faint and tinny (Happy Cycling)
  • The bird calls are sampled from Vangelis - La Fête sauvage. Sample starts at 2:43. [3][4]
  • A female voice (possibly sped up) saying either "hop skip" or "popsicle" (Happy Cycling)

In A Beautiful Place Out In The Country


  • A man or low-voiced woman slowly saying "the past inside the present" (Music Is Math)
  • The phrase "we all fall down" spoken slowly, processed through a vocoder, and melodized (Music Is Math)
  • A similar voice to the "past inside the present" voice saying either "purple", "be careful", or "perfect circle" (Music Is Math)
  • The sound of a crackling campfire (Beware The Friendly Stranger)
  • A playground with children, played very quiet (Beware The Friendly Stranger)
  • A number station broadcast recorded by Sean Booth on a shortwave radio and gifted to BOC (Gyroscope)
  • Reversed high notes played on a 12-string guitar (probably an acoustic guitar and most likely sped up) (end of Gyroscope)
  • Leslie Nielson's voice over from a National Geographic film about underwater volcanic explosions and capturing a sea dandelion (Dandelion)
  • A child saying "A beautiful place", from a Sesame Street segment (Sunshine Recorder)
  • A vocoded voice saying "an eagle in your mind" (Sunshine Recorder)
  • The "I feel proud" speech from Sesame Street ["Bye"'s only] Sunshine Recorder
  • Dialogue between a man and a woman sampled from the 1972 film Season of the Witch (Julie And Candy)
  • The flute solo at the end of "When the Music Starts to Play" by The Incredible String Band, heard in reverse and at a lower speed (The Smallest Weird Number)
  • Track 10 from side B of (Old Tunes Vol. 1), reversed (The Smallest Weird Number)
  • An interview with Amo Bishop Roeden featuring the line "Although not a follower of David Koresh, she's a devoted Branch Davidian" (1969 (with "David Koresh" reversed); Same words occur in BoC remix of Poppy Seed by Slag Boom Van Loon
  • A vocoded voice, similar to the one heard counting in Aquarius, saying "1969 in the sunshine" (1969)
  • A 1979 public information advert on the topic of energy conservation by the youth organization 4-H (Energy Warning)
  • Continuous, repeated whispering of the word "us", or the sound of air being sucked from a person's mouth as by a dental vacuum (Opening The Mouth)
  • "Alpha and Omega" said over a loudspeaker (Alpha And Omega)
  • A vocoded voice saying "Yellow" (Alpha And Omega)
  • A man's voice saying "I'm a God-darned Satanist, and, if I wanted, I'd be in this business too", reversed (Alpha And Omega)
  • A spoken passage that seems to have been taken from a self-improvement-oriented self-hypnosis tape and which has been modified to sound as if it is being spoken underwater (The Devil Is In The Details)
  • Very slowly-spoken speech (words unknown) processed through a vocoder and harmonized at close intervals for a dissonant sound (not confirmed) (The Devil Is In The Details)
  • A sound similar to a bubbling cauldron (A Is To B As B Is To C)
  • A ring-modulated voice saying "One two three four five, six seven eight nine ten. Now in Spanish, then in French, we'll say that twice again" (A Is To B As B Is To C)
  • A group singing "We love you all" (A Is To B As B Is To C)
  • From the film Season of the Witch, a man: "I'll be gone about a week. Oh, by the way, I brought..." (forwards and then reversed) (A Is To B As B Is To C)
  • From the song "Teddy Bear's Picnic": "If you go down to the woods today, you'd better not go alone!" (reversed) (A Is To B As B Is To C)
  • A reversed excerpt of an interview with Tommy Silverstein on the A&E investigative report Behind Bars: Supermax (A Is To B As B Is To C)
  • "So, those prophecies you've been describing" ... "and now to business [matters?]..." (reversed) (A Is To B As B Is To C)
  • A voice repeating "it must be a [message] ... look up there!" (A Is To B As B Is To C)
  • An English woman possibly saying "round the, round the, round the cauldron" and/or "but you may be dead ... you may be dead", which heavy echo applied (Dawn Chorus)
  • A child wailing semi-melodically (Dawn Chorus)
  • The child's voice saying bye in Dawn Chorus is taken from Sesame Street's Many Different Me's clip. [5] Audio snippet:
  • The sound of velcro pieces being separated, the tightening of a rope, or the compression of two rubber surfaces such as rubber gloves. (not confirmed) (You Could Feel the Sky)
  • A grunting noise resembling the sound of a taut tope being pulled across the hull of a wooden ship (You Could Feel the Sky)
  • A man saying "A god with horns" and/or "A god with hooves", played in reverse (You Could Feel the Sky)
  • Whispered: "take my hand" (You Could Feel the Sky, also in Seven Forty Seven)
  • Various young speakers discussing the nature of God, sampled from an album entitled "Family of God" (From One Source All Things Depend)

The Campfire Headphase

  • From an early 1970's anti-drug social hygiene film, a woman speaking and laughing (Chromakey Dreamcoat)
  • Various voices including a baby crying (Peacock Tail)
  • Various garbled voices that seem as though they may have been recorded in a highly reverberant public space on a handheld recorder (Sherbet Head)
  • An underlying drone sound that bears a strong resemblance to the drone heard in the cabin of an airliner during travel (Hey Saturday Sun)
  • Shortwave radio noise, including morse, teletype, and various data signals, one which seems to be a Harris RF-5710 radio modem (Slow This Bird Down)

Tomorrow's Harvest