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LABEL: Virgin Records RELEASE DATE: May 25, 2006 GENRE: House, Experimental, Electro
// review by Jeff

When exactly IS the prime time of your life?

It appears they're still trying to make some cash off of the trainwreck album which was "Human after All". So they cranked out a fourth single -- "Prime Time Of Your Life". Honestly, I thought it was a good song, but far from airplay-worthy. It's just too "out there" to make it on any charts -- and to my knowledge, it hasn't popped up on any. It got a physical disc release AND a music video (granted, it was low budget, but at least there were cool skeletons in it)!

So here's what I wrote in my review of the full album about the original version of this song:

Minimalism takes its toll on the Punks in The Prime Time Of Your Life. The minimalist approach they take is certainly unique, and this IS one of the more innovative of the tracks on the album. Brandishing a horribly flanged beat and a vocoder/talkbox combination of kooky lyrics (also in that "Harder, Better, Faster, Stronger" style [from the 2001 album "Discovery"]), this is certainly a force to be reckoned with. After a while, it drops the vocals, adds a sweeping kick, and then speeds up the song until it is beyond recognition! Was that really necessary, or were they just filling up CD space?

By itself, it is a nice track, although I still agree with myself that the overdrive at the end was unnecessary.

However, the real strength lies in the remix of the title track by French funkster Para One. This has to be one of the grooviest remixes I've heard in a long time! It completely chops up the robotic voice that says "Prime time of your life" and adds it to an equally chopped house-synth background and a slower but still powerful beat. Any melody from the original has been erased and replaced with another older-sounding synth that feels like it's bleeding a bit (just like a dye of sorts) but perhaps there's just a reverb I have a poor ear for. Either way, this is the primary reason why you should snatch up this single!

All is not well, however. Someone asked for a remix of that awful track, The Brainwasher, and so Erol Alkan takes the spotlight to do what he can with the meager material he's given. Deciding upon an industrial breakbeat approach, Alkan chops up the original and adds some new elements, include an off-key fake flute that eventually becomes rather warped as it adamantly tries to accompany the ugly bass synth from the original version. Thankfully, the parts from the original are used sparingly, and in fact, even though it's still fairly monotonous, it's the wicked breakbeats that keep me hooked. Overall, a great job, all things considered.

Technologic was also remixed by Digitalism, and the initial result is a conglomeration of blips and an almost Benny Benassi-style bass. Oddly enough, that high-pitched voice that spoke so frequently in Daft Punk's version is much more nasal this time around. It's unusual, but at least it's not a prominent aspect of the song anymore. But it is nicely imposed over a stringy bass guitar with what appears to be a more melodic background instrumentation than in the original. It certainly is much more creative and enjoyable than the original -- at least, that's what I believe.

Clearly, the remixers were thinking hard about how to improve the originals (difficult though that may have been... heh heh...) and the fruits of their labour are very sweet indeed. This single package is worth your precious cash, and it proves that Daft Punk can provide adequate source material for some great songs. Let's just hope they can make the great songs themselves in the near future!


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