How VHS Kung Fu Movies Led To The Prodigy's Biggest Hit

25 January 2019 | 1:44 pm | Simon Holland

"It’s either hitting that magic spot or it’s not."

More The Prodigy More The Prodigy

The Prodigy’s Breathe topped charts across the globe and went double platinum in Australia around its release in 1997, and more than 20 years later, the band took us back to its inception and unique recording process.

Speaking with The Music in Perth, songwriter and founding member Liam Howlett elaborated on its unmistakable steel whip sound effect and dirty guitar tones.

“We used to just watch VHS Kung Fu movies and just took it off of that,” Howlett said.

“You can do it in five minutes now, but back then you needed to chop each sound up on the soundboard. It was like making a rhythm with the swing thing, that's where the track started. That’s basically how that happened.

“With any of these tracks, it’s about the feeling you get, and it’s either hitting that magic spot or it’s not.

Don't miss a beat with our FREE daily newsletter

They definitely hit the magic spot, with the single arguable the track that set in motion their worldwide domination.

It’s also become a staple of their live show, with the UK legends opening their set in Perth last night with it.

As Howlett explained, how the song plays out is pretty much how it was written.

“With Breathe, the first thing I did was the intro guitar. I think that track was probably written how you hear it, so the intro and then the fight, the drop. We played Breathe on stage quite a bit before we decided it was going to be a single.”

The Prodigy's No Tourists Australian tour continues tomorrow night in Adelaide; check out theGuide for all the details.