Elton John Vs PNAU – Good Morning To The Night
Sir Elton John is without a doubt one of the finest pop musicians of the past century and his tracks have influenced and inspired many musicians throughout the decades following his prime. The latest release from John, Good Morning To The Night, is a compilation of reworked masters from between 1970-76, by Australia’s own PNAU, who are signed to Johns’s own record label in the UK.
The self-proclaimed “lover of dance music” personally commissioned Nick Littlemore and Peter Mayes to divulge themselves into his old master tapes and create something fresh and new using the original compositions created 40 years ago. In the interview broadcast when premiering the work, Elton vainly describes this process as “Painting the Sistine Chapel,” and the work that PNAU has done has “created a new genre of music.”
However, when listening through Good Morning To The Night, it can’t really be said that there is a ‘new genre of music’ being presented, but it is simply an enjoyable and refreshing take on Elton John’s music. For example, within the song Sad PNAU has isolated miniscule elements from such a wide range of tracks and have compiled a seemingly modern composition, whilst still retaining the original pop style of traditional Elton John music, so no real big surprises there.
The lead single Good Morning To The Night from the release of the same name could easily fit perfectly into PNAU’s catalogue of hits. Chock full of memorable riffs and hooks, this remix a really enjoyable and catchy track and is probably the standout commercial single of the eight songs put forward. Most of the remaining tracks follow a similar route of soft, warm electronic tones and instead of creating a party vibe that PNAU is familiar to producing, there is a larger emphasis on the slower, more mellow atmospheres.
When first hearing that this project was taking place, there was an expectation for quite a dance heavy, club album that would potentially sound quite cheesy with classic Elton John vocal melodies, however it doesn’t really suit the club scene, but more easy listening for car rides or slightly familiar background music.
This isn’t a revolution in dance music but it is a fun, engaging take on some older music in an attempt to reach a younger audience. Will it convert the new generations of music enthusiasts away from their bass-heavy tendencies, probably not, but PNAU have successfully lived up to the expectations of Elton John, which is no small feat. For those who enjoy some soft electronica and/or event just general listening, this record is a pretty top notch record and hopefully there will be more in the series to enjoy later on.