Wednesday, December 29, 2010

missing again

Every now and then, labels like to remix and rerelease a tune in order to capitalize on an opportunity to reach a new set of ears. UK labels have been mining this particular vein for well over the last 25 years. Some experiments have worked while others have not.

In the 90s, it was de rigueur to mix and remix, ad infinitum. After the post rave comedown, the concept became less invasive with only a handful of singles being reswizzled. Some aimed directly at the heart of the dancefloor, while other were targeted to an ever dwindling television viewing audience through the use of commercial soundtrack placements.

These days, it seems labels are back in step with the remix game. We've seen Utah Saints and Guru Josh get a new coat of paint with varying degrees of success. Now, it's time for a rather unnecessary stab at Everything But The Girl's pivotal, dancefloor moment.

"Missing", originally issued at the second single from their seventh studio longplayer, "Amplified Heart", met with a resounding whimper when it first skirted with the UK singles chart in 1994. It reached an unimpressive peak of #69. EBTG were used to this kind of chilly chart reception even though the quality of their records were head and shoulders above many of their contemporaries.

Then, in 1995, Todd Terry was drafted in to give it the tossed salad treatment. Zing! An instant hit which raced all the way to #3 in the UK and missed out on pole position in the US by one spot. In fact, the song was such a massive success in the US that EBTG got labeled with the "one hit wonder" tag. In the UK, they capitalized on it and delivered, "Walking Wounded", one of their strongest albums and a bonafide classic.

Now, Dutch DJ, Fredde Le Grand, has been given the master tapes and brought it bang up to date with a newly reworked mix. This time, it's turned into a stadium sized anthem. No easy task considering the pedigree of the Todd Terry version.

Fedde's biggest hit to date is "Put Your Hands Up 4 Detroit", a #1 smash in 2006. He also hit paydirt with two further top 10 singles - "The Creeps", a reworking of a track by Camille Jones which hit #7 in 2007 and "Let Me Think About It" featuring Ida Corr which peaked at the runner up position later that same year. Now Mr. Le Grand puts his dirty Google fingers all over EBTG's landmark recording.

Ben and Tracey are no strangers to this situation. In 1994, Blanco Y Negro, the label to which EBTG were signed from 1983 to 1995, decided to capitalize on the success of "Missing" by issuing a hits collection (their second) and commissioning Todd Terry to give "Driving" a reswizzling. As you can imagine, they were not too thrilled with that opportunistic move.

I wonder what Ben and Tracey think about this turn of events more than fifteen years after they first released "Missing".


  1. Nothing will touch the Oakenfeld remix of this (from 2008ish)

  2. Chris & James > Oakenfold > Ultramarine > Terry > Natale > McSpadden >> Fedde LeGrand >>> Little Joey.

  3. this is more of a remix of the todd terry remix than of the original record, oh god

  4. I have to agree with @OrozcoUK here...this just darkens up the TT version. The best progressive version of Missing is still the Chris & James mix. Any mix, such as this, that mixes down Tracey loses me to begin with. I remember Ben saying that they just really dislike remixers messing with the vocals speed. Although it seems that isn't the case here, this is just flat. Maybe if Satoshie Tomeii had attempted this 10 yrs ago it would have worked, but he would have been smarter and drafted in Robert Owens to just remake rather than remodel.

  5. Agreed with esque...this is low on the mix scale. The update is great, but the soul has been extracted from the track in exchange for the anthem treatment.