- A modern classic gets an unnecessary remix.
- Five-and-a-half years after it came out, and with its third remix now hitting record shelves, it's worth taking a fresh listen to the original version of Floorplan's "Never Grow Old" and asking why it's been so enduring. Is it the relationship between the Aretha Franklin vocal sample and Robert Hood's trademark synths? Is it the novelty of hearing religious sentiment in a techno track? Is it the way Hood drew on his vast experience to control the tension and release of the track's arrangement? The answer is yes to all of those, which is probably why it's a classic.
The "Re-Plant" version that came out the following year made sense. It streamlined and tightened some things, changing the tone but not the spirit of the original and subsequently got plenty of DJ play. The Lyric Hood remix, which sat on the B-side of Floorplan's Let The Church EP from 2017, was fun, especially its bouncing bassline and exaggerated vocal chops. (Lyric, Hood's daughter, had become his partner in Floorplan by that stage.) And yes, this Mark Broom "Dubplate Mix," which has been receiving DJ play since as far back as 2015, is nicely executed, trading some of the original's loose soul vibes for more mechanistic expressions. But it does feel difficult to get excited by the release of a remix that's five years old—of a track that's been played almost to death—and with an original version available that's so perfect.
The case for this release isn't helped by the inclusion of the tepid Broom track "Jungle." Hood and Broom's music shares plenty of characteristics, from their use of samples to the swing of their rhythms and their punchy drums and synths. But none of that is evident on "Jungle," which bangs away at a percussion pattern for five minutes while forgetting to actually say anything. The EP is rounded out by a new "Re-Plant" of "He Can Save You," a cut from the 2016 Floorplan album Victorious. Again, this one has had been remixed before, with Hood including a slightly tweaked version on the Let The Church EP. And again, it's debatable whether this darker-but-similar remix needed to be released, particularly as it doesn't have the benefit of a killer original to draw from.
A1 Floorplan Never Grow Old (Mark Broom Dubplate Mix)
A2 Mark Broom - Jungle
B1 Floorplan - He Can Save You (Re-Plant)