A BIG thank you to those of you who came out on Saturday to support Girls Rock! Chicago and made a donation. As I’ve mentioned before, they’re a wonderful non-profit that I volunteer for here in the city and it was so amazing to see support for them at our fundraiser! In other news, URB has just put up my new interview with Perry Farrell. I interviewed him last year as well so we were able to touch on some of the same subjects as well as talk about his new future projects – he’s an incredible person to talk to and always gives me delightful little Farrell idioms in our talks. I’ll probably be putting up the audio from our interview as well on my podcast within the next week – I try to put up my recorded interviews when possible. Lastly, remember you can download my new remix of Cybersutra’s “I Believe”!! Visit my Soundcloud for the goodie
This first track deserves a little extra attention. DJ Kue entered the Lolla Remix Throwdown and although he didn’t win, he did make it to the semi-finals where he had to pick one of three songs to remix. He chose Only Children’s “Don’t Stop” and the group was so taken with his remix they considered signing it on as part of the official release package. Once you listen, you’ll understand why – Kue’s finesse in flipping a relatively mild track into a peak hour banger is showcased in full here. From his complete stops in the track to contrasting synths that work beautifully as point/counter-point, it’s one of his best remixes to date, and I’m proud to share it with you all.
And speaking of DJ Kue, I have another remix from him, and also one from Reepr of “Hey” by Lil John and 3OH!3. I am NOT a 3OH!3 fan, and found the Rolling Stone review of their latest album f***ing hilarious (you know, the one where they called Streets of Gold “about as pleasant as a case of genital herpes”). That being said, I’m always open to remixes, even of songs/groups I don’t like…and both Kue and Reepr deliver. Kue’s employs big horns, plucky guitar and tons of low end filtering giving it a little retro rave feel while Reepr’s carries more traditional electro house overtones.
Midnight Conspiracy is finally trying out the harder side of things with their remix of Lucky Date’s “Hos & Discos”. While certainly likeable, it doesn’t have the same punch that their more low key remixes do. Not that I don’t think it’s a good remix – on the contrary, I like the overly raw mainline and more classical fillers in the background. However, an A/B with some of their other work – like their remixes of Tiga and Crystal Castles – and the emotional joie de vivre that normally comes through is lacking here.
*Rubs hands together* ahhhh, more Phantim bootlegs. You best know him from his epic mash of Laidback Luke & Diplo’s “Hey” with Dennis Ferrer and now he’s back. Swedish House Mafia is appropriated for both (“Leave The World Behind” and “One”) with equally pleasing results, though my favorite of the two is probably “In The zONE”, just because of personal affinity for the originals. Phantim’s ability to select and blend two songs together is nearly unparalleled – each sounds like an original in their own right due to mindful selection and programming.
Tony Oh was one of the fab people I was able to meet while traveling this weekend and he’s sent over an original that I just had to post. While “Two Lips” could benefit from a little more tweaking (the overall mastering is a tad flat), the parts to the whole are so much fun. An unintelligible, robotic voice directs the track along with a uppity staccato melody while trickling sci-fi blips twitter on in the back. Though I know I tend to have a ‘less is more’ mentality, my favorite parts in “Two Lips” are when everything and the kitchen sink is thrown in.
A lovely chunky beat, punctuated horns and slivers of Stevie Wonder’s vocals make up the bulk of this remix by Sacha Robotti. “Supastition” doesn’t ever really let the vocals fly, but I don’t think it would actually work here – that’s not the point of the song. Instead, save for a couple key points where a line slides in, it’s just tiny bits of vox that operate as supplemental melodic elements. They parry with the horns throughout, creating a tight and funky vibe that makes me dance in my chair.
This mix of MRTN x POMP’s “High” is a wonderful exercise in using a few elements to their maximum potential – a slightly morose melody is hook enough to carry throughout the entire near five minutes without much deviation. Secondary and tertiary synths ebb and flow along with pads that fill the background, adding depth and intensity. Touches of bright percussion are a perfect cherry – snappy snares, cowbell and more lift some of the heaviness the other elements impart.
The more I listen to this remix of “La Mezcla” by Beware & Motorpitch, the more I fall in love. It’s deceptively laid back – a lazy, muted bassline rambles on starting about a third of the way through, and is eventually joined by a simple and loopy synth. They’re both catchy, but the stars though are the hand drums complimented by that ubiquitous pan flute from the original. It gets unnecessarily cluttered for a minute towards the end, with layers of electro elements that have no relevance to the rest of the song swelling in, then abruptly dropping out. If I could change anything…it would be eliminating that small section and giving the lovely vocal that’s most present in the beginning a bigger slice of the pie throughout.