I stumbled upon local whiz-kid Brenton Duvall recently via Hype Machine, when an errant search for Drake’s “Crew Love” yielded a few dubious hits. Full-disclosure: last year’s Take Care ranks up there in my personal archive as one of the best albums in recent memory and ”Crew Love” is a fantastic specimen of what makes the album so good – austere synths and percussion, minimalist arrangement, and atmospheric vocals that fill the space around Drake’s commanding lyrics. So, hunting for a remix of the track (naturally), I was looking for a reinterpretation or re-imagining of some kind that might take the source material to a different place.
While I wouldn’t consider Duvall’s effort a remix in the strictest sense, it stood out in sea of otherwise underwhelming, fairly bobo tracks, particularly because it managed to reconfigure the primary components of the song while keeping the sprit of the original intact.
21 year-old Duvall (who records music under his own name) has put out various remixes and reworks of emcees du jour – think Gucci Mane, Wiz Khalifa, Childish Gambino. However it’s Duvall’s original beats – chopped, screwed, stretched and slowed – sampling the likes of Lupe Fiasco, Beach House and the aforementioned Drake that really merit a listen. Clams Casino, rising beat-maker / A$AP Rocky cohort and a similar wunderkind of sorts, comes to mind as an apt sonic comparison – which is by no means a bad thing. Specifically, 2011′s phenomenally ‘gutter-wave’ Instrumental Mixtape 1 and this years volume 2 follow-up were big winners in my book.
Clams comparisons aside though, check out Duvall’s handiwork below, a collection of similarly chilled-out tracks released back in August, including that great rework of “Crew Love” mentioned above.