Tuesday, February 15, 2011


With hopes of spring weather around the corner and an unfailing love for Bruce Springsteen, let's make a "SpringMix" (see what I did there). Now, let this be prefaced by saying that I am the number one advocate of leaving Bruce Springsteen's songs alone. But, every now and again I make an exception. I make an exception when the songs are remixed with delicacy and a cool vibe, honouring the original purpose and idea behind his ingenious tunes. It really goes back to the old adage - less is more. So, when it's one of those evenings where you're feeling the legendary, party-pleasing Bauss vibe, but maybe are interested in something saucier with a little modern flare or new twist, check out these examples of Springsteen properly club-remixed. Anyone who knows what they're doing, knows Springsteen doesn't require to much to jazz him up. He's jazzy as it is. 

Coincidentally, the remixes I've found lately have been of three of my favourite Bruce songs. They have a little underlying beat; a little two-step uppity kick to them, if you will. The "State Trooper" remix  is phenomenal, maintaining the original words and low-down cowboy vibe while inputting the slightest of bass lines and quiet keyboard effects. It brings out the bad-ass in this rebellious anthem, which is an essential prerequisite for doing any sort of work with it. The quiet hop and clap-beat that layers slowly is the perfect accompaniment to Springsteen's howls and outlaw whoops.

The "I'm On Fire" remix is probably my top pick of these remixes, featuring the simplest of beats underneath this classic synthesizer pop-flavoured tune. I heard this Cousin Coles remix as a snippet within Vancouver-based DJ Neoteric's new series of hour-long indie/classic mash-ups. Neoteric is amazing and certainly requires a separate conversation of his own, but needless to say - the subdued tapping behind Springsteen's whispers is perfect for this piece of 1980s ultimate cool.

Slightly more upbeat, but still anything but overpowering, is the remix of Springsteen's patriotic classic "Born In The USA". Normally a combination of smashing drums, cymbals and Springsteen's strained growls - this remix sweetly singles out the xylophone, piano and synth introduction to help build momentum before welcoming kickdrum, marching band rhythm and his famous story of the American dream.

Surprisingly, people are smart enough to leave his (and many other classics from his time) material alone, because in my years of music discovery I've always been pleased to find remixes of his songs are few and far between. If there was any more flare globbed on than this, I would try to shut down the whole remix operation with picketing and tireless mockery. These, on the other hand, I find to be cleverly done, appropriate, and a hell of a good time. Enjoy.

"State Trooper" - Springsteen (Trentemøller remix)

"I'm On Fire" - Springsteen (Cousin Coles Bad Desire remix)


                               "Born in the USA" - Springsteen (The Freedom Mix)

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