By: Chris Schwarzkopf
’s remix of Coolio’s iconic 1995 hit “Gangsta’s Paradise” honors the original while still managing to add a dash of the unexpected.
The track opens with sharp, fast synth tones beefing up the original beat as it heads toward the point where Coolio’s vocals would come in. I won’t spoil the rest for you. Suffice it to say that the restructuring of some key aspects of the track caught me off guard and I think it will catch other listeners off guard, as well.
Remixes, like remakes, walk a delicate edge. A good remix, just like a good remake, shows the utmost respect for the original while still bringing something new to the table. A careful performer can use a remix to draw out and emphasize elements that may have been understated in the original, or at least tweak those same elements to add a previously missing dimension to the sound.
Candyland are careful performers. One has only to listen to some of their previous remixes to realize that their love and respect for the music they listen to extends to what works well in each song and less well and what may even work better.
Take the duo’s remix of Kaskade
’s “Room for Happiness” from a few months ago. Though a drum & bass take, the boys wisely hung on to the symphonic elements of the original rather than letting the heavier percussion eclipse them. The result is a great uptempo version that still maintains the rich, resonant sound Kaskade is known for.
Candyland does the same here. This remix keeps the gritty, urban ominousness of “Gangsta’s Paradise” while offering a take on it that will surely satisfy trap enthusiasts.