iamforest, Lumiere, Diana Boss
I M U R—FFL Remix EP (Groundwerk)
Whether it’s a battle of the bands, a freestyle rap clash, or duelling jazz saxophonists, everybody loves a good musical contest. Just look at how the weirdly sadistic American Idol managed to stay on-air for 15 years.
Recognizing that there’s more to rivalry than a winner-take-all bloodbath where the greatest sob story is the victor, however, the recently launched Vancouver label Groundwerk appeals to the positive side of competition. Believing that the best music often comes from peers pushing and encouraging each other to work harder, the local collective runs regular remix contests for the city’s producers to rework music from another Vancouver artist.
Taking a shot at local star I M U R’s track “FFL” are iamforest, Lumiere, and Diana Boss: the first three artists to have their winning songs released on the Groundwerk imprint.
Retaining the vibe of the original, iamforest’s approach adds a soft dubstep bass line to underpin the track’s reverbed synths. Warming I M U R’s melancholic vocals with playful melodies and a sunny beat, the artist’s dreamy interpretation reimagines the track’s scolding lyrics in a softer setting.
Taking inspiration from the original’s soft trap hats, Lumiere’s chilled-out remix is built on a downtempo-cum–hip-hop beat, fleshed out by impassioned piano chords and soft synth pads. Propelled by its dynamic contrast, the track oscillates between subtle variations in energy, drawing out the emotion of I M U R’s mix.
Diana Boss, star of Groundwerk’s debut release, steers the track in an entirely new direction. Creating a bouncy, four-on-the-floor rhythm, the pair transforms the original’s melancholy atmosphere into a fidgety dance track, complete with dramatic strings and Rhodes keys.
Showcasing the up-and-comers of Vancouver’s electronic-music community, Groundwerk’s I M U R—FFL Remix EP proves that local artists should not just be competing with each other, but vying with international producers for the spotlight.