Sydney producer Whyte Fang has taken the unmistakable voice of The Grates’ frontwoman Patience Hodgson and displaced it into a new sonic landscape, transposing the heart of each song to a new beat based on the bare bones of the original tracks.
Key tracks from recent album “Secret Rituals” including ‘Turn Me On’, ‘Sweet Dreams’, ‘Like You Could Have It All’, ‘Borrowed Skin’ and ‘Crying All Night’ have been given a reworking in full to become twisted versions of themselves - some deep and dark, some light and tasty – all very catchy.
"I didn't want to create a typical remix for the Grates, I wanted it to be a song” said Whyte Fang of the opportunity to work together. “The Grates approached me with the idea and when I heard the vocal - I instantly felt inspired to write. I loved the end result - I dont think either of use wereexpecting the two genres to marry as well as they did, and I couldn't wait to sink my teeth into the rest of the tracks and give them a new perspective.”
When The Grates contacted Whyte Fang about the possibility of reworking some of their material, neither really knew what they were in for. With a penchant for ethereal, otherworldly electronica, mixing her sensuousdark synths with the bratty punk sounds of Brisbane's favourite rockers turned out to be an inspired choice.
“We wanted to work with Whyte Fang for a number of reasons, one being it felt like we were getting in on the ground floor of an incredible talent! Surely a year from now she'll be too busy taking over the world to take calls from us!” says Patience Hodgson of the collaboration. “And two, in all seriousness, Whyte Fang is very intuitive. She sees the magic in music and is not afraid to be lead down rabbit holes and through arch windows, the kind of places we desired to see our songs go. She works out of somewhere over the rainbow.”
Beginning with a stunning take of 'Turn Me On' which turned everything inside out but the vocals, Whyte Fang worked her way through her five personal favourites from Secret Rituals, breaking them down to their core elements and building them into a new aural puzzle. "Trying to get my head into Patience's lyrics really allowed me to understand the track," she says and by jolting listeners out of complacency and offering a new perspective, Whyte Fang has certainly succeeded.
New single ‘Like You Could Have It All/Like You Could Have It All Whyte Fang Version’ is a testament to that success.
“When I heard this song, I instantly felt very connected to the Patience's vocals. The lyrics were very intense - I had noplans with what I wanted to write under it. The words that come to mind when I describe this remix - though contrasting - are primal, raw and industrial,” says Whyte Fang.
Patience agrees, “Incidentally what drives me to the point of repeated listens with Whyte Fang's “Like You Could Have It All” is in fact how she managed to juxtapose the schoolyard qualities of the original version in her new industrial landscape. To me it begins with what I visualise as creepy triplets playingjump rope in a desolate playground. She then ups the ante of angst, without the use of any guitars, to seductive new heights. Like she's recruiting us. It's so addictive.”
The Grates wanted to complete the package so they asked Sydney based illustrator Caitlin Shearer to re-mix the cover art. “Caitlin's work, much like Whyte Fang, can easily bridge between mysterious, dark territories & yellow brick roads. She turned the tables of worship from the original cover of many apostles worshiping a mountain, to each stage of themoon cycle worshiping one deceptively powerful girl.”
The Grates & Whyte Fang: The Version Suicides is available digitally from this Friday.