This might be a bit controversial, but remixes: I just don’t get them. Never have. Whenever someone says to me ‘That remix of that song is amaaaaaazing’ or posts about some super-dooper remix on a blog, I really have no interest whatsoever.
This recent quote from James Blake sums it up for me:
“Remixing is like musical prostitution. I think it’s really cynical and vacuous; I’m batting offers away like flies. It never used to be like that. Ray Charles didn’t need five remixes. The song speaks for itself.”
Remixes certainly have their place in certain genres of music (electronica/dance perhaps moreso), but I think improving upon the original song is the exception, rather than the rule. Maybe I’m closing myself off to an incredible sub-genre, but I really don’t think so. Isn’t a good, honest song simply a good, honest song? It doesn’t need extended passages, special effects and bleepy-bloopy bits to make it more ‘special’. If that makes me untrendy, so be it.
It particularly annoys me when bands release ‘remixed’ versions of albums – Depeche Mode are the latest culprits, planning a double-disc collection of remixed songs from their thirty year career this June. I don’t need a new version of ‘Enjoy the Silence‘ or ‘Just Can’t Get Enough’! What’s wrong with the originals?! They’re classics for a reason!
Daft Punk are also planning a remixed version of their recent Tron soundtrack. FOR F**K’ SAKE! The bloody soundtrack’s been out for less than six months! It is, as Blake said, a cynical move.
[Edit: It’s been pointed out that the album may not necessarily been Daft Punk’s idea, although their ex-manager’s recent comments seem more angered by the calibre of remixers, rather than its actual existence…]