For when the frost bites at your bones, the air is unfeasibly crisp, and you’re waiting to be carried away on a pillow-like gust of warmth, Clinic (and Daniel Lopatin) wrote “Misty II“. Atop a shuffling, pattering electronic beat, organs quiver and flicker, squalls of feedback caress, and Ade Blackburn looms and loops between the channels, improbably promising both winter’s conquest and its vanquishing.
*Not actually definitive at all.
This started with my recognition that BuzzFeed has decided to carve up every phenomenon in the world into ‘definitive rankings‘ and ‘which x are you?‘. Not to be outdone, here, then, is my contribution to this growing corpus. I hope Mr. Matthew Perpetua is paying attention. Continue reading The definitive* ranking of DFA remixes
It starts with the crowd showing their appreciation. Slowly, a rhythm settles in. Then, a gut-churning bass line and a central instrumental motif guaranteed to make bodies writhe. It’s The Rapture’s “House of Jealous Lovers”—the first DFA single, with James Murphy behind the boards.
And it’s pretty much David Bowie’s “Love Is Lost”, too, albeit spun out over a ten-minute remix masterminded by, yes, James Murphy. Continue reading James Murphy’s Law
“I want this for my answering machine except it loops for 10 minutes and you never get to leave a message.”
— YouTube user Colunga210
Today’s unavoidably memorable older cut comes from 1987, and Jody ‘Fingers’ Finch‘s infectious “Jack Your Big Booty”, here enjoyed in its BHQ No Acid Vocal Remix form, which was released in 2009.
For over seven minutes, there is just one lyric, cut up and repeated. Under it, the beat is thumping and atavistic. About four minutes in, some spare squirking sound effects surface, after which the pace picks up fractionally, and the percussion begins to clatter away in a less restrained way. This soon lets up. Derrick Carter‘s minimalism is indefatigable.
The original version runs at a faster pace, and the vocal line has a faint plate reverb that gives the impression of being sung into a vast, but padded, chamber. If anything, the effect is even more rooted in Chicago—the collision and intermingling of voices that rises halfway through is unquestioning and unstoppable. As in the remix, the lack of any melodic instrument creates an empty ocean of negative space, which allows the 808’s hi-hat to really ring out.
As has been pointed out here, the eighteen-year old Finch wrote this song in honour of “his friend’s mother’s backside”.
The remix has found some fame, in the nether reaches of Friendly Fires‘ excellent Suck My Deck mix, released last year for the London club promoter Bugged Out!. On the mix, “Jack Your Big Booty” rolls inexorably into B.D.I.’s “City & Industry”, which is comparatively luxuriant, with its Siren-like octave-jumping synth, and warmongering percussion.
Even more recently, the remix is featured as the opening track on Derrick Carter’s Fabric 56 mix. Unfortunately, according to Resident Advisor, “this mix doesn’t work”, but it might still be worth a listen.
For lovers of Chicago house’s primal roots, Jody ‘Fingers’ Finch’s track is one to check out.♦
Shame on the Mercury judges for not nominating Jarvis Cocker’s refreshingly urgent Further Complications. While you digest that lamentation, you can also frazzle your brain by listening to the recent Pilooski remix of the album’s closing track, “You’re In My Eyes (Discosong)”, which is highly recommended, and is free.
The acclaimed French electronic artist re-imagines the song as a hushed, slithering dance track, with a lobotomising bass-line complemented by a crisp beat and inventive whistling percussive noises that leap out unexpectedly. Virtually nothing remains from the original – even the vocals are tampered with and re-ordered, occasionally warped into minor explosions that blurt out of the speakers. About two minutes in, a strange, whining, groaning synth hovers perilously between the channels, and the distant chiming of a guitar whispers through. A minute later, there is a wonderfully unexpected breakdown with a sweep across a harp, after which the rest of the instruments cut back in with greater intensity.
The whole remix is beautifully crafted, charting the mournful depths of the song in an insistent, nagging manner. By the end, as the harp winds down to a whooshing gurgle, there is absolute closure. It’s a remix that evokes the very best of former DFA remixes, in particular the closing minutes of their liberal interpretation of Gorillaz’s “Dare”, and it bodes extremely well for Pilooski’s remix of LCD Soundsystem’s 45:33, due to be released on September 14 as part of the aptly titled 45:33 Remixes.