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Trying to love, but appreciate the work.
on 1 May 2014
When I first heard of the project I was very excited about the prospect of hearing all these old ZTT tunes remixed. The first initial tinge of disappointment was that it was 80% FGTH. Not so much of a problem, but this compilation is worth more than 1 AoN track, and Propaganda's P-Machinery is a massive omission. But I digress...
To the mixes themselves, well, by god they are long. Which, to me, normally isn't a bad thing but in some places here less could be more. The mix of "Duel" is far too long. It's 6 minutes in before you get to vocal and before then you have elements of the start, middle, end, middle, start, end...and then the vocals. At least to have a smattering of vocal (or even some clever choppy vocals) before the 6 minute mark when, frankly (no pun intended) I was getting a bit bored.
"Two Tribes" is a mess, I can't get to grips with what B&J are trying to achieve. Like Duel, it's a bit all over the place. Whereas "Warriors..." I think they hit the nail on the head, with some nice beat editing (which I thought there would be more of, but sadly there isn't.)
"The Power of Love" does lift out the magic of the composition quite well, but again they fall into the trap of having elements of the ending before even the vocal has begun (and given the amount of 'depth' we were told they had on offer, I would have thought this kind of 'bedroom mixing' that even I did in the 80's would be avoided.)
I really do appreciate the 'art' of what the B&J have done, I just wish the mixes could have been a bit more playful and not so rigid and strict. What do I mean? Well, the best example I could think of, and I must admit I was waiting for it...is in "Dr Mabuse" when the vocal of "Kein Zurueck fuer dich" is sung. I would have liked the music to have gone quiet and just to have left the words...but the mixes are too structured and clearly became a labour of love for B&J to allow themselves to have some fun! The mixes would still have been faithful but would have shown a bit more flair.
Now, if B&J could do the same for Depeche Mode...hugely unlikely though!