by: Joseph Johnson
February 23, 2012
The neo-soul sensation Dâ€™Angelo has been pretty quiet over the last few years. However, he seemed to suddenly re-appear in January and has just completed a number of European tour dates in major cities like London, Paris, Stockholm and Oslo. It seems the music world is starting to get excited about Mr Michael Eugene Archerâ€™s return, and in the last 3 weeks a couple of tasty remixes have appeared online.
The first is by London-based producer L-Vis 1990, who has given Dâ€™Angelo a thoroughly housey re-boot. From the start of the track, phasers and the looped vocalâ€™s simple message: â€œhave it your wayâ€, give a traditional house feel. Then L-Vis lets the song break down, unleashing the original Dâ€™Angelo track for a few choice seconds, leaving the listener with no doubt as to where the sample comes from. After that itâ€™s back to the house vibe, which continues for the duration. Some might argue that this track merely samples Dâ€™Angelo, rather than strictly being a remix. However, with that breakdown and the song title, thereâ€™s a strong sense that L-Vis 1990 wanted to pay homage to Dâ€™Angelo.
The second track is by another British musician/producer. James Blake has become known more for his own vocal talents than his remix skills as of late, but before he made it into the big leagues, Blake was creating pulsating remixes under his Harmonimix moniker. His offering would be considered a remix in the more traditional sense, with the original vocals from â€œLeft & Rightâ€ being much more recognisable. Blakeâ€™s stamp is all over this track, with a crunchy, lo-fi quality and sub-bass that contrast with the squeaky R&B/soul production we usually hear Dâ€™Angelo singing over.
If the aim of these remixes was to transport Dâ€™Angeloâ€™s sound into other musical realms, then both L-Vis 1990 and James Blake have succeeded. And as for Dâ€™Angelo himself, a new album is expected this year and his record label must now be rubbing their hands with glee thanks to these freebie promotions.