1.09.2004

Music

Gabe earlier suggested that we also write on other topics.

I'm not much of a music reviewer, finding the reviews generally poor summations of the music, anyway. Apart from DJing at a college radio station and a party or two, I have little experience (although I did once interview this little known band out of Chicago on their first album for their first world tour--a band strangely dubbed Smashing Pumpkins), so I'd like to hear what others think on music these days:

--I find myself purchasing mostly female singers in the past decade--without purposefully meaning to do so. Do others find themselves falling into one gender or another? I wonder if there's a definable trend.

-- Is anyone formerly attracted to remixes? I used to be but I find that most remixes today apply the same disco beats of a decade ago: same dance songs, different voices singing them. They don't reshape the song at hand. I bought Sarah McLachlan Remixed and found the only interesting thing about most is the voice singing. The better remixes realized the voice was the better than what they could add so they highlighted it, let it take control: "Sweet Surrender" and "Angel."

Similarly, I looked forward to the remixes of Dido's "Thank You" with much anticipation, imagining what new shapes the song might form, but they were all drab and, worse, the beats at moments felt off.

Do remixers no longer see them as artists but as DJs trying to get people to dance to popular songs?

Remixes aren't for everyone, I know. You have to be interested in shifting themes, emerging into a wholly different product. About the only artists I can think of being interested in their remixes are Nine Inch Nails and Bjork. They don't just add a prefab disco beat.

There used to be a sense of innovation (as opposed to solely a merchandising gimmick to sell more product). I remember how amazing Prince (or whoever remixed) split his "Batdance" into two altogether new ones. The song may have dated--I haven't listened to it in some years--but it's a sense of pride in what was happening to his work.

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