DCONSTRUCTED – Disney music for the EDM era

Disney are great at making music for their films. Award-winning songs that accompany their equally applauded big-screen masterpieces have become part of the general musical knowledge we all possess. However, as we get older these songs have become almost over-familiar with us, as well as a little too sugary-sweet for every day consumption.

For example, the recent runaway success Disney has had with Frozen, and its popularity with our 4-year-old daughter, has meant that the soundtrack CD has been a permanent fixture in our car for many weeks now, and shows no sign of leaving soon. The lead track, Let It Go sung by Idina Menzel (or was it Adele Dazeem) won the Academy Award for Best Original Song, and the play count from our copy alone supports this! Therefore, you can imagine my delight when I discovered that Disney released DCONSTRUCTED.

DCONSTRUCTED (yes, all in caps) was released at the end of April, and contains 14 tracks that playfully, but skilfully, mix Disney tunes old and new with a generous dose of EDM, all at the hands of modern music pioneers such as Daft Punk, Armin van Buuren and Avicii amongst others. The result is 65 minutes of musical delight! Disney have worked hard to make sure the album is credible as well as being a modern offering. It’s like a trip down memory lane, if Memory Lane was a nightclub.

The album covers a wide range of source material, from ‘The Circle of Life’ through to The Muppet Show Theme and back to some lesser known entries in the Disney back catalogue, such as ‘Pineapple Princess’, the final track in the list. And perhaps this is one of the reasons why it works – there is a lot here that is familiar that makes it easier to relate to the music, even if you’re not a huge EDM fan. It’s hard not to feel the hairs on the back of your neck stand up when you hear “It’s time to play the music, it’s time to light the lights” drop in amongst the synths and deep bass.

On the strength of this album I hope they make a DCONSTRUCTED 2, although it would be nice if listeners could nominate or vote up which tracks they would like to see remixed. Disney’s musical history is rich and varied (plus, with Disney’s purchase of Lucasfilm, it opens they way for including Star Wars tracks amongst them – David Guetta remixing the Cantina theme anyone?) and I’m sure there are popular tracks that weren’t even considered for this album.

I’d also like to see some more hip-hop influenced remixes in there (DJ Shadow perhaps, or Aim) and I felt that British talent was under-represented (Calvin Harris, or even some old-school influences from someone like Underworld). I think there’s even scope for a double album?

I understand that this might not be everybody’s cup of tea, but I think it’s a good collection of credible tracks, and Disney should be applauded for trying something different.

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