Thursday, December 03, 2009

The Decade in Music #6: Royksopp, "What Else Is There? (Trentemøller remix)

Well of course there are too many contenders for dance remix of the decade. That’s just ridiculous right? I suppose the decent thing here would be to attempt a scholarly post on how MP3 blogs made the discovery of new remixes a thing of almost indecent ease.

I could talk about The Knife’s superb Heartbeats, which is unendingly fantastic for so many reasons: that crypto-atheistic chorus: “To call for hands of above to lean on/Wouldn’t be good enough for me, no”; the enigmatic lyrics of the middle-eight: “And you, you knew the hands of the devil/and you kept us awake with wolves’ teeth”. While the original sounds like something from A-Ha’s junkie brethren and José González’s finger-picked guitar version is silkily beautiful. But no rational argument can be made that Rex the Dog’s remix is not king. Here it is:



Remix of the year though? Not quite. What about something from Stuart Price in his Thin White Duke guise? I lost count of the number of superb makeovers he delivered over the last few years. Unfeasibly massive reworkings of Madonna, Gwen Stefani, Missy Elliott; and this, my personal favourite, Fischerspooner’s “Just Let Go”. Playing that on headphones transformed my otherwise bucolic walk to work across the calm green expanse of the Domain into a harrowing flashback of some deeply wrong night in a Taylor Square club.



Points must also be awarded here for that ticking clock which also made an appearance in his production of Madonna’s “Hung Up” and his remix of Gwen Stefani’s “What You Waiting For?”

But the following remix is the only one that made Marshall H hijack my stereo at one in the morning and crank it to maximum volume for the duration. That I didn't get ejected the next morning still seems a minor miracle. Maybe they were grooving too. The track was also played at carnage volume on car journeys across desolate parts of NSW.

It’s the Trentemøller remix of Royksopp’s "What Else Is There?" There's so much going on here. Karin's skipping voice as the breakdown comes; those New Order guitars; that ugly five-note riff that anchors the song. Listen:

3 comments:

shana h said...

I remember that night well - Marsh cranking the stereo up to 11, then you turning it back down to human levels only to be usurped by MH once again. We were warming up to see.... was it Michael Mayer?

All grand choices here, Mr Ward. Finding the supplied Youtube clips don't do the beats justice though - for anyone that hasn't heard these in their full glory, I suggest finding on Spotify and cranking to, yes, 11.

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