Wednesday, November 1
Why do so many remixes suck such major windage? It's a question for the ages... kind of like the one about the tree that falls next to the bear shitting next to the woodchuck chucking wood while no one is listening (in the woods). (I am paraphrasing.)
As usual, I suppose, context is everything. If you're out on the dancefloor, hopped up on poppers or all touchy-feely, Give-Peace-a-Chance/All-We-Need-is-E, then most remixes will probably sound just swell (if not utterly life-altering). All one needs in that case (besides the artificial stimulants) is that reassuring, chest-echoing bass beat, some soaring (perhaps "burbling") synthesizer lines, and a Glo-stick or two to light your way to Heaven or Hell or whatever-the-hell theme you may be chasing that particular evening.
When it comes to more "active" listening, however, remixes have a way of courting tedium and pointlessness -- even when you're a fan of the original song or single. Maybe that's what mash-ups were intended to remedy. Bored by one extended, repetitive, melodically static soundscape? Well, here's ANOTHER one, unimaginatively intersperced with the FIRST one. Clever is as clever does.
Even so, such remixes and reimaginings will likely remain a part of our popular culture (certainly for as long as Madonna keeps kicking). And, perhaps even more alarming, the occasional "remix CD" will continue to drop upon us -- often when we least expect it; almost always when we least desire it.
So, it is within this rather bleak context that I remind any and all of you who give a hoot about such things that Goldfrapp released just such a remix CD, We Are Glitter, back in October. Now, please understand, I like a number of Goldfrapp tracks, including a few that appeared on their last "regular" release, Supernature. But for one exception, all of the remixes on Glitter are spun from Supernature's songs and are done by artists other than the Goldfrapp duo.
Frankly, I'll have to leave it to you fine folks to decide whether or not this sort of thing is your cup of tea. For this particular, forever-banished-from-the-dancefloor outsider (I was recently exiled for my SUPER-funky rendition of the "Funky Chicken" and my Rush Limbaugh-inspired, Michael-J.-Fox-off-his-meds "remix" of the Macarena), it's almost impossible to judge the quality on display here. But for all you dancin' fools -- or those of you who just enjoy driving (or sitting in gridlock) to a driving beat -- this disc might be just the ticket to Heaven or Hell or those Woods with the Tree (falling) and the Bear (shitting) and the Woodchuck (chucking).
Just remember to stay hydrated.
Goldfrapp on MySpace.
From the LP We Are Glitter, 2006 >>>
[MP3] "Satin Chic" [Bombay Mix] [by The Shortwave Set]
[MP3] "Ooh La La" [Extended Remix] [by Benny Benassi]
From the LP Supernature, 2006 >>>
[MP3] "Ooh La La"
From the LP Black Cherry, 2003 >>>
[MP3] "Strict Machine"
From the LP Felt Mountain, 2000 >>>