I’ve mentioned on a few occasions that I’m much too fond of covers. Under some circumstances this extends to remixes as well, so I was more than a little intrigued when I first came across MDS and their Hongdae music remixes. Very curious to find out more I approached the duo with questions concerning the recently released I am the REMIX album:
Can you please start by introducing yourselves?
We are electronica duo, MDS. We consist of two members, Bjorn and Heo-Dong. Many people ask us what MDS stands for but honestly it doesn’t have any special meaning. When we were at the stage of naming ourselves, we didn’t reach an agreement so we just put together three letters that sound good. Doesn’t it sound cool? MDS. After we named ourselves as MDS, we found that we could make a lot of meaning out of with those three alphabets. One was McDonalds Delivery Service. LOL. We used to eat a lot (really a lot) of McDonalds burgers via McDelivey when we stayed up all nights working on this album. And one night, we were eating burgers as usual and found McDonalds Delivery Service was perfectly fitting to MDS. LOL. But we cannot use that as our name anyway. We just want to be called as MDS.
How did you get the idea for the I Am The Remix album, and how did you pick the songs?
We used to throw a monthly party at Club Ta in Hongdae. But Club Ta is a live club not like typical dance club, so doing a DJing set was somewhat insufficient and it seemed that people who came to our party wanted us to show them something more like a live band. So, we started remixing 80’s Korean dance music and our friend vocalists’ songs and invited the vocalists in our sets. Having a vocalist amused audiences more than having just two DJs behind the deck at least in the live club. After doing that, we realized we are somewhat good at remixing and it was fun remixing other artists’ songs. so there we go.
Selecting songs to remix was not an easy task. First, it should have some kinds of musicality that fit into electronic music forms. Songs that are too fast or too slow or have complex chord progressions are quite difficult to remix into electronic music. Second, whether we are friend enough to the artists for asking them remix permissions. Third, the songs we like enough to remix. If we didn’t feel it, then we couldn’t remix it. Going over these processes took more than a month and we listened to thousands songs to pick the right ones. So finally, 10 songs were selected and remixed. Of course, there were artists who refused our remix proposals. When we looked at the final remix selection, we found that we had at least some kind of relations to all the original artists from a little friendship to family relation. The standards of song selection could be said your level of friendship. LOL.
What has the response from the artists been?
We’ve been getting many different reactions from the original artists. Some just said chicly “Good job”. Some were in confusion while listening to our totally deconstructed remix of the original song. Most of the original artists liked our remixes. Some of them even said to us that they liked our remixes more than the original versions. Personally, we like our remixes more than the originals, LOL.
What sort of response are you expecting from the fans?
Remixes and even electronic music are still quite unfamiliar to many Korean audiences. So we hope people don’t feel too strange to our remixes. Even though it’s just a remix album, we put really hard work into making this album in the past 7 months, so we hope a lot of people like it and buy it a lot. Like a million copies, LOL. It will not only support us but also their beloved original artists. LOL. And we also hope a lot of people come to our parties and rock the house hard and crazy with us till the sun comes up!
For many years already I’ve considered myself too old to move around that kind of dancefloor, but MDS are getting even me curious! The album release party will be held August 13 at Club Ta – if you happen to be in Seoul then do go check them out and make sure to come back and leave a report.