Pascal and Pearce on their new release…both of them
The duo have mixed Playmen and Vassy’s “I should have said” to bring something new to the song. We liked it and thought we’d ask them about it. It seems each of them have a take not to go missing so we had to elicit answers from both Pascal Ellinas and Dave Pearce (in case you didn’t know how the name was derived).
Richard Chemaly (RC): Congrats on the new release. Remixing has always been weird to me because it seems you’re trying to improve on the the original artists work. Doesn’t that cause, at least a bit of, antagonism?
Pascal Ellinas (PE): Thanks very much! No not at all, not for us anyways. We see a remix as a way of interpreting a song in your own way – keeping an element, be it the vocals or the melody or whatever, and putting your own spin on it.
Dave Pearce (DP): We pretty much got our big break from doing remixes, so it’s always been a really big part of production for us. A good remix pack has something for everyone, so in essence it just makes the original track identifiable to a lot more people!
RC: Speaking of antagonism, when playing live, how do you ensure you guys are in sync and not getting your mixes mixed up.
PE: That’s always been one of our strong points, it just kind of works. We both know how each other likes to work, so we’re able to work around each other pretty well. No terrible incidents so far – touch wood.
DP: We’ve been doing this together for nearly 9 years… so yeah, we’ve definitely had our practice *smiles* But also having a good idea of how DJing works, knowing when you can mess with what the other guy is doing and when you can’t.
RC: When you’re looking for work to mix, how do you determine what you’d be keen on. Dependent on labels? is it a decision made at 02h00 while messing around in studio? Do you ask your fans? Why Playmen?
PE: It’s always different for us – inspiration comes in many forms. A big track like this is a huge opportunity for us, so something like that also effects the thought process – it’s silly to turn down a big opportunity. This one specifically was organised through our record label Universal SA – we already knew we wanted to do it, then we heard the song and it was like yeah, let’s do this.
DP: I think no matter what song it is, the important thing for us is that we need to be feeling it, and have some sort of idea where we would be able to take the song musically. Sometimes a great song comes in for remixing, and you just can’t hear how you would put your own spin on it… we’ve had a couple come in where the original was in a similar style to us, and the track was just so good – we didn’t think we could add anything of value, so we’d have to turn the remix down. Thankfully for us that wasn’t the case with this remix!
RC: In keeping with tradition, the new mix places less emphasis on the vocals than the original. Is there a reason behind this phenomenon industry wide?
PE: I think vocals can be rather limiting in some ways – for example, there are a lot of drops that would work much better on a dance floor without vocals, but there is always pressure with radio edits to have lots of vocals in. Remixes give you the chance to arrange tracks as you’d want to best fit the dance floor, and not the radio.
DP: We definitely tried to keep a fair amount of the vocals in there, it worked with the melodic vibe we were going for. Vassy also has such an amazing voice, it was hard to cut stuff out. But yeah, fully agree with Pasci – remixes give you that opportunity to custom build tracks for specific purposes!
RC: Can we expect a video soon? When is it appropriate to bring out a video for a remix?
PE: For this, unfortunately not. But we’re working on a lot of original stuff at the moment, so hopefully we’ll have something fresh out soon!
DP: I think very seldom does a remix deserve a video – the point of a remix is to support the original track. Only very rarely does a remix actually surpass the original in terms of popularity – maybe in that case a video would be appropriate…