Having both released critically acclaimed albums last year, who would have thought the latest musical gem would have been borne out of a collaboration between that of Miguel and Tame Impala? I use the term collaboration loosely, being as this is one of five remixes from Rogue Waves, an EP featuring reworked versions of ‘waves’ from a variety of artists across genres from country to hip hop. Despite being one of the strongest tracks on his third studio album, Wildheart, it’s a tad surprising how much the Tame Impala mix in particular gives it a new lease of life.
Combining Miguel’s smooth, sensual tones with Tame Impala’s psychedelic bass riffs, ‘waves’ gains a new sense of definition, with the drums and reverb-heavy guitar highlighting every single nuance of the track. Utilising only the first verse and chorus, Miguel’s original is altered in such a way that isn’t too repetitive but manages to get stuck in your head for hours, in particular the repetition of the opening line: ‘Set it up, keep wildin’, runnin’, jivin’ / Baby drop it like it’s stalling, stalling tonight’. This certainly gives off a summery vibe, making you ‘want to ride that wave’ along with him. It’s hard to listen to the original version and not feel like something is missing after listening to this mix, as the ’70s-style additions give it much more of a Tame Impala edge; Kevin Parker and co have managed to create a fusion of R&B and electronic funk that wouldn’t sound totally out of place on a Tame Impala record.
This is the standout of the remixes on Rogue Waves. While each individual remix is wonderfully produced, adding both acoustic guitars and a sensual country twang to Kacey Musgrave’s duet and strong hip-hop beats being the basis of Travi$ Scott’s, it still isn’t too hard to decide on a favourite: the Tame Impala remix is by far the most impressive. It’s fluid, it expands upon the funky tone we already hear within the album track and it takes an already pretty damn good song to even higher heights. This is only further proof that collaboration across genres really can work, despite what it may say on paper.
[Originally written for Redbrick Music]