ilikethat

I Like That – Toolroom Remixes Review

Written by Fionn Hodgson

January 11, 2011 8:24 pm

I’ll get straight to it. The original of ‘I Like That‘ by Static Revenger and Richard Vission instantly grabbed my attention as it features the teasing vocals of English singer, Luciana. It was one of the most popular club tracks of 2009, taking the number one spot on the US hot dance clubs songs and making it into the top 40 mainstream chart.

But hey, that was 2009 and regular club goers will have probably heard, rated and bought (or not bought) that single by now. The release I’m talking about in this review features four relatively new remixes of I Like That. Each of them are very different in style and as a result, have different strengths and weaknesses.

Listening first to the Angger Dimas remix, I like what I’m hearing very quickly. Obviously influenced by the more recent trends in Electro House music (think everything that Crookers does,) this is bound to get excitement surging through the dancefloor. However, it is a bit of an earache! It’s trademark sound is this screeching sawtooth synth (think of an angry bee or a dentist’s drill) that can get rather numbing through headphones, let alone a nightclub rig. Maybe this is what dance music has to do these days to get the attention of the listeners – actually be punishing to hear! Still, the production itself is cutting edge with some excellent builds, drops and utilisation of the original track. I’d love to hear it live.

Let’s move onto the Die and Interface Pocket Rocket remix. Instantly recognisable as a bit of Drum & Bass about to drop, I began to get very excited as I heard this one start. The vocals are sped up over a driving jungle groove so after the drop I was expecting a massive bassline and beat in the same league as Spor or Noisia. Unfortunately, the production seemed to jump back about five years with a simple repetitive XL beat and bass that doesn’t do nearly enough. The groove sounds like it was sequenced in about ten minutes, relying on simple filter fades to give the track an impression of doing anything at all. It’s nearly six minutes long, but I’d say there’s about two minutes of material actually worth listening to. For this reason, this remix would probably work well if sandwiched between two other D&B tracks in a set. On it’s own – rather forgettable.

Then the Dino Lenny remix. Begins with a refreshingly smooth progressive house beat. Over two minutes later and I’m still listening to a repetitive house groove. Is this an I Like That remix at all? Well it is, just about. There’s an abrupt drop featuring part of Luciana’s vocals and then an even more sudden return to the familiar groove. Personally, I think this is a bit of a genre-clash. The charged vocal delivery from I Like That doesn’t really suit the smooth and relaxed nature of this new house groove. The production is very functional but nothing particularly interesting happens, just the usual breakdown and build-up routine heard in every other progressive club track. There isn’t a bassline or any melodic hooks either – so good luck trying to hum a tune of this track! This version is eight minutes long – and I was bored and disappointed by minute three.

Finally, the Thomas Gold dub. This version has a promising start – with a dark electro feel faithful to the original. There are some interesting production effects in the percussion parts which got my feet moving after only a few seconds. The mix is great too, shoulder to shoulder with the best electro I’ve heard in late 2010. What sets this track apart from the others in this remix compilation of course is the fact that this is an instrumental version. No Luciana to be heard here, instead an upgraded re-imagining of the original arrangement. As a result, it’s just as strong as the Angger Dimas remix in terms of keeping my attention throughout. It isn’t too repetitive and doesn’t try to squeeze two minutes of ideas into nine minutes of copy and pasted patterns. I’d have appreciated some more adventurous melodies, I think there’s only about two different discernible notes in the entire track!

I think it’s hard to come up with a creative remix idea for a track which is already very strong with the listeners. I Like That hasn’t yet dated significantly so these remixes often feel redundant when all they do is nab the vocal line and plonk it on top of a generic beat. I’m afraid to say that I don’t prefer any of these versions to the original although Angger Dimas’s remix is just as enjoyable. The other three remixes are much more forgettable without enough original features or hooks to remember. As a result, to me they feel rather hollow and soulless. Maybe artists should stick to sampling less commercially successful or older songs or even come up with some original material. Nice try, but no cigar.

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