Gimix is a mix by the Avalanches
that was originally available for purchase at live concerts in Australia. It has since been released on a promotional CD and has been played on radio in Australia, the US and Britain. It can be found in mp3 form on the Avalanches' web site, and is readily available on various p2p
services (eg, soulseek
) if you are that way inclined.
It was originally released to combat bootlegged early copies of their 2001 album Since I Left You. The Avalanches' music is heavily based on samples; like DJ Shadow, their genius is to put together and alter these samples in such a way that they create something completely new and interesting. As such, it took the band a year to clear the recognisable samples on the album with the owners of the original recordings, who could sue if not given proper compensation for the use of their work (notably, they were able to clear "Holiday" by Madonna, the first time she has ever allowed anyone to sample her music). The bootleg copies presumably feature some of the samples they were unable to clear (I haven't heard them). Gimix not only features samples the band would have no possible chance of clearing, but revels in it.
At first, Gimix doesn't sound much different from Since I Left You. It begins with the title track, and segues into "Stay Another Season", just like the album. There, it starts to get a little different; the Madonna sample is noticeably more prominent. Then, completely out of left field, you hear Bob Dylan singing "once upon a time, you dressed so fine, you threw the bums a dime in your prime, didn't you?" from his famous "Like A Rolling Stone". Over the bassline from "Holiday. "Stay Another Season" eventually regains the stage from Bob Dylan, leading nicely into the Avalanches' own "Two Hearts In 3/4 Time", which is largely similar to the version of "Since I Left You".
After "Two Hearts", though, is when it really starts getting exciting. Recognisable samples start coming left, right and centre. I won't mention every single sample they use, but the way they mix together De La Soul's "A Rollerskating Jam Named Saturday", Jimi Hendrix's "Crosstown Traffic" and Cyndi Lauper's "Girls Just Want To Have Fun" is so audacious and inspired that it transcends the mere samples they're using. I'm fairly sure that very few artists would ever consider putting The Smiths, Ol' Dirty Bastard, Electric Light Orchestra and Daft Punk in the same mix.
Gimix also happens to be the best party CD, ever. Here in Australia, Since I Left You has sold quite well; it seems to be almost universally liked by indie rock snobs, dance music fans and the general populace. Putting a burnt copy of Gimix into a CD player is the perfect chance to fuck with people's minds, while simultaneously getting their feet tapping. People assume it's Since I Left You, and by the time they realise that they are not only listening to Hall and Oates, but loving it, they're hooked. Somehow, out of a disparate, varied bunch of samples, the Avalanches haven't just made a coherent whole; they've made a coherent whole you can dance to. Of course, you can say this about Since I Left You too; Gimix simply takes Since I Left You to its logical conclusion.