Track of the Day: 'Hide and Seek (DVW Spring Remix)'

By Alex Eichler

Past TracksIn 2005, Imogen Heap released the single "Hide and Seek," which later turned up in a piviotal scene of The O.C. and a Saturday Night Live spoof of the same, and served as the sampled chorus of "Whatcha Say," the debut single of R&B singer Jason DerĂ¼lo. None of these quotations have really diminished the power of the original song, which uses no instruments, only a vocal effect that makes it sound like Heap is harmonizing with herself many times over. The results are unnerving: without any backing music to lend a sense of place, Heap's voice may as well belong to a ghost. Still, there are moments of real beauty in the arrangement, and more than one producer has tried to remix "Hide and Seek" into something club-friendly.

Domink von Werdt, a Swiss producer who goes by DVW professionally, hasn't made "Hide and Seek" into a banger--that's probably impossible to do. He has, however, turned the song into something new while not actually changing very much at all. Von Werdt adds a drum track and some gurgling keyboards to the mix, but these are modest contributions; he knows to stay out of the way of Heap's voice. His surest touch is with the percussion. Lesser remixes fill "Hide and Seek" with wall-to-wall, four-on-the-floor beats, but von Werdt opts for a simple kick drum that starts and stops, chopping the music into discrete, aching moments. The drums suggest an anxious heartbeat, or the indifferent ticking of a clock, heightening the song's sense that everything is swirling out of control; they land like punches to the gut, nicely mirroring Heap's lyrics about incalculable loss.

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