“Behind the Wheel” was Depeche Mode’s twentieth UK single, released on 28 December 1987, and the third single for the album Music for the Masses. During that period, on the continent (especially Germany and Eastern Europe) and an ever-growing part of America, Depeche Mode’s craft really was music for the masses. Depeche Mode has never slowed down much since emerging in the ’80s and never has the remixes of their most famous songs. Fresh on that list comes the award-winning Croatian electronic music producer Dobie, who has signed releases to Dobie Records (IE), Ultrawave Records (UK) and Rehegoo Music Group (New York – Los Angeles – London). Vjeran – VJ (meaning faithful in Croatian) aka Dobie has just released the single “Behind The Wheel” – Dobie (Depeche Mode Bootleg Remix 2018).
Francois Kevorkian, Eric Prydz, the Orb, Dan the Automator, Stuart Price, M83, and Röyksopp are only a few of the luminaries who have gotten their hands on Depeche Mode’s songs with success. So what does a 2018 Dobie remix of “Behind the Wheel” sound like?
Damn good, with Dobie’s trademark brand of irresistibly synth work and throbbing bass lines taking on much more weight and power than usual. Here the song is filtered, distilled and purified. Ominous synth lines, moody spoken word vocals and crystal clear electronic effects all float gracefully over thumping bass lines.
Tones rise, fall to the depths, and rise again, sometimes within the space of a single bar. Anonymous interludes bind the song together with elegance and subtlety. It’s darkly mysterious. Evocative. Muscular. Moody. This finely-tuned blend of house music and something rather more shaded, reclusive and sinister.
Its propulsive, electronic rhythm, and darkly uplifting chorus referring to the bleakness of stark realism makes this a very dramatic remix indeed, yet one that you can dance to. Dobie remixes this classic with his own unique take on electronic music, making it into a great floor-filler.
This darkly euphoric trip is extended into a shadowy, brooding masterpiece of pumping synths and pounding bass effects. If you ever want the definitive Depeche Mode remix, this is it – the supreme height of glorious, uplifting, sinister feeling. You’ll feel high and mystified at the same time. The spoken lyrics and sexy, soulful moaning give it that ominous atmosphere.
This is a great piece of remixing work, and it’s not just because of the number of excellent highpoints scattered casually all over; it’s also the absence of any real flaws that makes it such a compulsive listen from start to finish. So for those with any interest in Depeche Mode and / or remixes, try this track. It will not disappoint you!