Monday, July 16, 2007

Duran Duran - White Lines

Duran Duran, "White Lines"

Duran Duran, "White Lines (70s mix)" (YSI link)

Duran Duran, "White Lines (Oakland Fonk mix)"
(YSI link)

Duran Duran, "White Lines (Junior Vasquez mix)" (YSI link)

Not sure how well-known this is, but Duran Duran did a cover version of "White Lines (Don't Do It)" in 1995. It's actually a brilliant choice, one of the definitive 80s sounding bands, covering this classic song from that decade about the drug of choice of that decade (and every decade) cocaine. They even got Grandmaster Flash and Melle Mel to lay down vocals for it, a nice nod to the legends.

The music is not going to change your life, to say the least. It's not bad, it's actually a pretty faithful rendition of the original, considering it's a pop band covering a hip-hop track. It all kind of reminds me of what you'd expect a new wave band of white guys would come up with doing this song. They clearly love the song, they clearly have a specfic sound that they can't leave behind, at times it sounds like a karaoke moment. Not in the drunk douchebag lawyer destroying some classic, more in the sense of talented guys playing one of their favorite songs, not coming up with anything remotely original but who cares?

The remixes take things up a notch, bringing some much needed beats to the table.I can't say any of them are that amazing, but it is interesting to hear this quintissential 80s tunes updated to include some of the sounds of the late 80s/early 90s. Junior Vasquez, I believe, is behind almost all of the remixes of this song. For the most part, these mixes tend to make the Duran Duran version danceclub-ready.

We'll have an essential mix up later, I'm actually having a hard time choosing as I have some stellar long mixes that I want y'all to hear. Check back tonight and see what I decide.


Anon said...

This is just sweet. I always loved the original and DD's version, but hadn't heard the mixes. Thanks for the post!

Jose said...

Duran Duran's rendition of Sugar Hill Gangs jam White line is nothing short of an improvement on the original and GMF's version. The beauty is taking evolving hip hop and merging it with rock. Both pure ingredients mixed into a gourmet dish. Comon'! I'm a product of da Bronx and Brooklyn. Adolescence in the late sixties riding the wave into the seventies and college then bustin' out grad school in the late 70's early 80's. Medical school etc. Today I share all three versions with my son in law. He's a product of the hip hop /rap era. He chose Duran Duran. " They took it to another level" You said this about Jr. So I'll check it out. Be cool to merge all three. Keep on posting blogs dude and keep on jammin' Remember. Don't do it!! Peace.

Jose said...

Yo! I just carefully reviewed Jrs mix. Cant' take anything from him. However, it does not improve or take away from Duran Duran's version. It's the typical NYC mix. DD's version still stand, in my opinion, as the best version. If only I was a mixer. I'd just work with that version. No impurities. Peace.