Driving home in my 1973 car with matching stereo (one speaker) I listened to the remake of the 1969 song Rubberneckin’ and found myself asking the question “should they mix Elvis?” The extended version has some left / right stereo effects which don’t come out that well on a very old 1 speaker stereo … you miss half the sound(effect). But at home on a 5.1 surround set I had a completely different experience … hopefully the neighbors appreciated Elvis too.
The package has a very modern design. It seems that BMG has chosen a new modern approach to Elvis releases. The ‘ELV1S 30 #1 Hits” and follow up “Elvis 2nd To None” have the same style. Strangely they chose to show mainly incomplete images of Elvis. The same goes for the single, Elvis almost looks like a criminal with a “bar” over his eyes. Perhaps the design of the JXL single which is continued with the font on the single could have given it a more club single effect. But then again, this “half face” matches the “2nd To None” album design.
Besides the various remixes which circulate on the world wide web of songs like “Kiss Me Quick”, “Burning Love”, “Suspicious Minds” and of course “Rubberneckin’” (in various versions) we finally have the second “official” DJ remix of an Elvis song.
The choice for “Rubberneckin’” was in general received positively by fans, although a lot of them asked for “Let Yourself Go”. With music as classic as most Elvis’ big hits it is very hard to touch a classics like “Jailhouse Rock”, “Suspicious Minds” therefore the choice for a lesser known song like “Rubberneckin’” to remix for a broad audience sounds logical. The record company of the Rolling Stones dared to remix the classic “Sympathy For The Devil”. A remix by the Neptunes (rumored to have done a remix of Hound Dog featuring gangster rapper Snoop Doggy Dogg which was rejected by BMG) is currently on the charts.
Paul Oakenfold said in an interview that the remix had to work for the Elvis fan and also in a club. But he tried to maintain the integrity of the artist, you know it is an Elvis record first and foremost.
Listening to both the remix and original version on this single you can hear he tried just that. The typical background singers (a touch of Motown?) are more to the back behind the modern beat and the original guitar lick is still there. You can clearly tell Paul Oakenfold listened to the JXL remix of “A Little Less Conversation Please”, the “fairground-sounds”, a little samba and a “fat beat” are added to this remix too.
It is clear BMG tries do repeat the success of the “ELV1S 30 #1 Hits” release. A new compilation and a new remix will most probably do the trick for the general public. And for the remix itself … well to each his own. About half the people on ElvisNews like the new version which sounds like a modern adaptation of the original song. The other half prefers the original Elvis and the original version. Guess you will have “Stop, Look And Listen” for yourself.
And a special “thank you” is in place for David Troedson of the Elvis Information Website for providing us with this single. Which is available with the link below.