Sleestackz “Ruination” REMIX
Anntex “Vanessa Yo”
Anntex “Vanessa Yo” REMIX
Remixing is powerful and neccesary. It can breathe new life into songs that were initially mishandled or poorly conceived. It can infuse a well-received gem with an alternate feel or perspective, sometimes in ways as subtle as re-recording vocals with inflections better matched to the new beats. Sometimes the impulse to remix results in a song with so many new elements that it is more like a sequel to the original. There are few listening pleasures more profound than discovering that a remix exists for a song that is already beloved. It is an even more momentous occasion when the remix equals or surpasses the original. I had this experience twice this week.
I have long been a fan of Long Island-based Sleestackz’s song “Ruination,” having discovered their 1996 LP Behind The Iron Curtain in the used bin of the New Brunswick, NJ Sam Goody. I never peeped their Ruination/Crystal Clear 12″ vinyl single and thus was only aware of the album mix of “Ruination” which I included on two mixes that I made for blogs). In a recent thread at the T.R.O.Y. forum, Lyrical Gymnastics introduced me to the existence of the remix, which transforms the plodding murkiness of the original to something bright and upbeat yet even more urgent in its depiction of social decay and despair.
Also, in the T.R.O.Y. forum, a certain individual who may or may not have been affiliated with The Source, Ego Trip, and XXL put me on to the existence of a remix to Anntex’s “Understand Me Vanessa.” A few years back I wrote a review for Anttex’s mostly unheard album, and Anntex replied and told me how my review accurately decribed his artistic motivations, and I was going to write a short story based on the song, and … um, okay, enough exposure of my rampant rap nerdery. The point is that some mysterious character named Toby Fletcher brought the remix to us in mp3 form via facebook, and it’s a great track. Antexx’s laid back denunciation of a clingy ex-lover is given new life with a faster beat (courtesy of Spearhead X, of Ya’ll So Stupid/Mass Influence fame) and a more energized, damning delivery to match it. Makes me want to forgive Anttex for producing a Color Me Badd song. — Thun