There are many things that could be said to define this current era of music, but the are few that would do it as succinctly as the free download. Whilst record companies are still wrestling with this bizarre new world of needing to convince the audience to pay money for their products, there have been many failed attempts to try and get the public to march to the major labels tune. Clamping down on downloaders was a short-lived and unfruitful affair, punishing the prolific few whilst the silent majority of small time illegal downloads carried on regardless. Shutting The Pirate Bay down just splintered the torrent community, making it impossible to meaningfully impact on the medium with any sweeping measures. Online stores have had some success, whilst streaming shows some, if near-profitless, potential. As an attempt to pacify audiences desperate for new material, the free download has become an industry standard promotional tool, geared towards generating hype with minimal outlay on actual advertising.
Of course, the amount of tracks that an artist can produce and still remain relevant is limited, and the acts that can release records by the bucketful and still have a reasonable fan base are notable by their scarcity. Which is why those dedicated to getting the latest legal mp3s probably have an iTunes library full of remixes, some of them good, some of them listenable, few of them exceptional. Of course, it’s in the labels interests to do it on the cheap, especially given the fact that there will be no direct remuneration for it, which is why the remix competition is gaining pace, as companies begin to outsource to the hive mind.
Of course, there is room for the remix to be an art in itself, something to be celebrated and adored in it’s own right. Most modern acts happily moonlight at reworking others tracks, but it’s unlikely any of them will ever do it with the skill of DIE NEUE MYTHOLOGEN. Translating to English as The New Mythology, information on the project is willfully sparse, their internet presence limited to a tumblr page. What is known is that they’re a side-project of Swedish electronic act Disco Pistol, and they’re ridiculously talented.
Anyone who can out sass Beyoncé is due recognition, and DNM do it with precision and guile, re-imagining her ‘Sweet Dreams’ track as a ludicrous, witch-house tinted lullaby before it descends into the years most atmospheric track. It’s positively euphoric – all encompassing, brooding with ambience, radiant with desire. The fact that they’ve managed to achieve similar results with tracks from Spiritualized, Ikons and Deutsch speaks for itself. The music industry may be hemorrhaging money, but if the PR men have any sense, they’ll shove their dwindling budgets the way of DIE NEUE MYTHOLOGEN and reap the viral rewards.
Beyonce – Sweet Dreams (Die Neue Mythologen remix)
Ikons – Afrika (Die Neue Mythologen remix)