Dit zijn de 3 favoriete remixen van A-Trak

Ivo Mollemans | 17 januari 2017

De uit Montreal afkomstige producer, maar vooral dj A-Trak heeft wel verstand van zaken als het op dance aankomt. Niet alleen achter de decks, maar ook in de studio heeft hij bewezen veelzijdig te zijn en zijn discografie is behoorlijk uitgebreid. Toch heeft ook hij een aantal nummers wat zijn persoonlijke favorieten zijn. Hieronder zijn 3 favoriete remixen die hij zelf heeft gemaakt.

Compilatie met remixen

Kortgeleden bracht hij een compilatie uit genaamd ‘In The Loop: A Decade Of Remixes’ waarop acht remixen van A-Trak te vinden zijn. De nummers zijn geordend op de tijd waarop deze zijn uitgekomen waardoor je duidelijk kan horen in welke periode de remixen zijn gemaakt.

‘Part of what’s interesting to me about this compilation is that it starts at a time before EDM existed. starts at a point when electronic music was tied to the indie scene more than anything else.’

‘If you go back to 2006, the major labels were crumbling from the effects of the download age, and there was a lot of cross-pollination between adjacent genres. Indie bands got into electronic music, and electronic music then started having more musical elements like guitar riffs, bass lines and distorted sounds.’

‘Producers who came from a hip-hop background started getting into a more uptempo, club-focused approach to production. A lot of the experimentation that happened in those years laid the groundwork for the explosion of electronic music a few years later that came to be known as EDM.’

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Dat A-Trak dus al lang meedraait is wel duidelijk. Tegenwoordig staat hij op grote festivals, maar ook daar laat hij nog steeds horen hoe het écht moet. Zijn vaardigheden met de draaitafels zijn vrijwel perfect en hij hoort zonder twijfel tot de beste dj’s die er op het moment zijn. Toch blijft hij zelf ook aanpassen aan de muziek die vandaag de dag uitkomt en dat is nodig:

‘We’re definitely in a transition phase. To me, one of the clearest indicators has been a change in tempo. Ask anyone in the music business, from radio people to producers and DJs. A few short years ago, the majority of electronic tracks were between 126 to 128 bpm. Now everything is between 100 to 110. Everything is slowed down, and it’s no longer dominated by that heavy 4/4 kick drum.’

De top 3 van A-Trak

Bob Moses – Tearing Me Up (A-Trak remix), 2015

'I loved the original, but it presented some challenges. Their version has a 6/8 time signature, which is kind of a shuffle, but I decided early on that I wanted my remix to follow a 4/4 time signature, because I wanted to use hip-hop-style breakbeats. I had to manually move syllables around in the vocal part to make it sit on the beat properly. I remember sitting through a flight doing a lot of precision mouse work on the laptop.'

Boys Noize – OH! (A-Trak remix), 2008

‘[Alex Ridha] had lost most of the original sounds due to a damaged hard drive. Usually when you do a remix, you get all the musical elements separated so you can pick and choose bits. All he had was a talkbox robot vocal and a hi-hat. The talkbox was kind of the hook of the song, though, so it was just enough to work with for a remix. I ended up taking the full final track and chopping up little sounds and sampling, basically treating it like I’d found some old record and was remixing from that.’

Yeah Yeah Yeahs – Heads Will Roll (A-Trak remix), 2009

‘I worked on this for a really long time and I’m not sure why. I refused to let go of it until it sounded just right. Usually people do a remix in a few days or a few weeks, but I spent six months endlessly tinkering. I finally sent it in, but their label said they had no use for it any more because they’d already moved on to the next single. Meanwhile, I was on tour with a couple of great DJs and gave it to them, and they went home to their countries and kept playing it. Eventually the label came back to me and said they’d heard people were playing it and wanted to pick it up after all. It ended up taking off way more than anyone expected. It made its way slowly but ended up being my biggest remix, even though it almost wasn’t released.’

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