Fatboy Slim – Praise You (Mike D & Adrock Remix)/Everybody Needs a 303 (Plump DJs Remix)

(Skint/Sony BMG)

Remixes of old classics rarely come out sounding even anywhere near as good as the original producers efforts, and often go down in history as a disappointing mark on an otherwise superb career of the producer and remixer alike. Thankfully the first release to be lifted off Fatboy Slims upcoming best of album, featuring a Mike D & Adrock remix of Praise You and a Plump DJs tweaking of Everybody Needs A 303, is a rare exception to the rule.

Mike D & Adrock flex their muscles first, turning in a dark, squelchy instrumental hip-hop remix. The track begins in quite a disappointing manner, with an annoying shouting, aggressive voice more at home in a gangsta rap track proudly proclaiming were listening to a Fatboy Slim remix, mother f**ker!… maybe just in case we werent sure? But its all uphill from there. A brief vocal breakdown gives way to punchy beats, squelchy bassline action, warm pad progression and some clever vocal edits. By far the best part of the track is about midway through, where an old-skool hip-hop vocal stab leads in to a short breakdown before the track kicks back in with an awesome percussive loop accompanying the thumping, distorted kick and an excellent saw tooth style bassline. The track continues to simply ebb and flow as it reaches a close, with warm pads and piano chords coming in and out of the mix and additional clever vocal edits adding interest to the mix.

But the real gem here is the outstanding Plump DJs reworking of the tweaked-out masterpiece, Everybody Needs a 303. Seriously, remixes dont get any better than this. Plump DJs take a bow for doing justice to one of the greatest big beat tunes of all time and bringing it up to date for the nu-skool breaks crowd. The track is usual Plumps style: tight beats, techy percussion, heavy basslines and more acid than a hippy convention at a 1980s warehouse rave. Starting off with an intro using the beat loop from the Fatboy Slim original, a breakdown follows where the acid makes its first deadly appearance. When it kicks back in, its nothing but sonic madness. The acid line squelches away, subtly changing every few bars and increasing in its intensity as the track progresses. Then its time for the second breakdown, which is easily the highlight of this masterpiece. Once again theres a nod to the brilliance of the original, with a 303 work out that mimics Fatboys original tweakin nonsense, but magnified tenfold in its lunacy.

In all honesty, Ive never actually felt like my braincells were being destroyed by a tune before, but the acid insanity in this breakdown truly is enough to leave anyone catatonic after repeated exposure. Once the track kicks back in its back to the previous squelchy madness and punchy beats from before the breakdown, which although may seem tame in comparison, theres plenty of synth stabs and effects thrown in to keep the track from getting boring. Unfortunately, the outro in this one makes it almost impossible to mix out of, with the beat dropping out way too early and leaving nothing but the acid line, which then gets chopped up and edited completely off beat, but this is really only a minor flaw in an otherwise brilliant track.

On the whole, this should get just about anyone excited about Fatboy Slims forthcoming remix album, as if the quality on display here is anything to go by, its going to be pretty special.