UNKLE77 / Mission Control Transcript

Guns Blazing (Drums of Death Pt.1) has long been a favorite song of mine since the first time I heard it on UNKLE’s 1998 album Psyence Fiction. The song features Kool G rap on vocal duty and some amazing production by DJ Shadow. Most interesting to me though is the conversation that takes place throughout the song between the fictional spaceship UNKLE77 and Off-World Technical Surveillance (also referred to as Off-World Mission Control.) I’ve never seen the conversation included in the song’s lyrics anywhere I’ve looked, so I set out to transcribe it myself.

I’ve worked on it several times over the years, with this being my third attempt at it, and IMHO, it’s a very good transcription. I’ve used the vocal only version of the song since my second attempt, which has made this task much easier. Still, there are some parts where the voices overlap, and it’s very difficult to decipher what it being said, so I know this isn’t 100% accurate. If you know the song and have any suggestions for improving the transcript, let me know in the comments!

Here it is…

(0:00)

Somewhere in space, this may all be happening right now…

UNKLE77: Off-world technical surveillance, this is U-N-K-L-E Seventy-Seven, I’m requesting permission to land, do you copy?

OWTS: Roger that. You’re cleared for landing, set the coordinates five-seven-zero-niner…

UNKLE77: What?

OWTS: Set for power from…

UNKLE77: I’m under attack!

OWTS: What?

UNKLE77: It’s a Class A fighter…

OWTS: Seventy-Seven what’s happening?

UNKLE77: I need immediate assistance… I need you to dispense all available units…

OWTS: OFF SYSTEMS, ALL RED ALERT, REPEAT: ALL RED ALERT, We gotta come out here!

(1:11)

OWTS: U-N-K-L-E Seventy-Seven, what is your position?

UNKLE77: Mission, I need immediate assistance, I have an unidentified craft…

OWTS: Whole squadron is en-route, rendezvous and reconnaissance vessel will make you in…

UNKLE77: I can’t wait, I’m not going to make it…

OWTS: …forty-four seconds…

(2:23)

UNKLE77: I’m within range of the reconnaissance vessel, but I’m hit on my left-front stabilizer. I’m switching circuits to compensate but it’s going to take some time, I NEED THOSE FIGHTERS!

OWTS: The fighters are locked to your coordinates, stay on target for the rendezvous vessel.

UNKLE77: I’M LOSING STABILITY! I can’t shake him I’m going to switch to…

OWTS: Seventy-Seven are you there? Seventy-Seven do you copy? SEVENTY-SEVEN?

(3:36)

OWTS: This is Off-World Mission Control… notifying central N-C-P… we’ve lost contact with U-N-K-L-E Seventy-Seven. Repeat: we’ve lost…

UNKLE77: Off-World Mission Control… this is U-N-K-L-E Seventy-Seven is anybody out there? Is anybody out there copy? Off-World Mission Control this is U-N-K-L-E Seventy-Seven is anybody out there?

6 thoughts to “UNKLE77 / Mission Control Transcript”

    1. I’m under the assumption it isn’t, primarily because the conversation is included in the acapella version of the song. That’s not guarantee, but I would expect that if it was sampled, it would have been left out. If it was done in the studio for the song, it would be nice to know who wrote/recorded it, but I’ve never seen any information on it. It needs to be brought up in an interview with James Lavelle someday!

      1. These vocals are by Lateef and Lyrics born (of Latyrx). Two bay-area rappers from DJ Shadow’s Solesides/Quannum crew. Recorded specifically for the album.

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