28 April 2012
  • Words
  • Features

Paul Oakenfold & Matt Goss
Firefly (2010)

Was this what Goss was picturing when he sang ‘When Will I Be Famous’ in 1987? Judging by the amount of Autotune Oakie’s used, probably not. But the meeting of 80s pop star and 90s trance legend shouldn’t go un-noticed. Neither should the pianos.

Tom Jones & Mousse T
Sex Bomb (1999)

Mousse T traded credibility for cash when he shook hands with the hairy chested Welshman. Misguided DJs have busted weddings, Christmas parties and shit seaside clubs with it since in the hope someone will take their knickers off. No one ever does.

Orbital & David Gray
Illuminate (2001)

Teaming with singer-songwriter David Gray was not Orbital’s finest moment. Brothers-in-law or not, Gray’s wails and the Hartnoll’s synths just didn’t work. But it did come to us on the same album as the best ever rave mix of the Dr Who theme, so all is forgiven.

The Streets & Muse
Who Knows Who (2008)

Squiggly feedback, bluesy guitar licks, swashbuckling beats: this opens with the same funk power as Run DMC and Aerosmith… then Skinner wades in with his clumsiest rap ever. It’s a bit like Rage Against The Machine getting a re-rub by Chas & Dave.

Roni Size & Cypress Hill
Child Of The Wild West (2002)

Brizzle meets Cali for a super sharp-shooting soundclash. Lord knows how many hits they took from the bong to knock it up, but both parties reprazent their best points, B-Real and Sen Dog’s raps flowing with an almost grime-style delivery. Still ace.

Fatboy Slim & Chris Walken
Weapon Of Choice (2001)

Hollywood hard man Christopher Walken does the dad dance, spins on a luggage trolley, walks the wrong way on an escalator and even flies to the soundtrack of Fatboy’s party starter. Also features Bootsy Collins for extra collaboration kudos!

Gill Scott Heron & Jamie XX
We’re New Here (2011)

Who knew Jamie’s fractured beat-smithery and Gill’s troubled soul would make such great bedfellows? Lead track ‘New York Is Killing Me’ is arguably the only occasion when the words ‘emotional’, ‘dubstep’ and ‘banger’ actually go together.

DJ Hell & Bryan Ferry
You Can Dance (2009)

Ferry limbered up for Roxy Music’s 40 year reunion with this ten- minute laser-reaching workout. Hell’s stabby synths proved a perfect playground for Bryan’s soft croons, making it sound bang up-to-date and authentically retro.

Tiesto, Diplo & Busta Rhymes
C’Mon (2011)

As if Tiësto and Diplo getting together wasn’t strange enough, Bussa Bus gets in on the act for the ultimate in trancey stadium hip house. Fact: you’re legally allowed to slap anyone you see trying to imitate Busta Rhyme’s stupidfast rap.

Jeff Mills & Montpellier Orchestra
Blue Potential (2005)

Jeff’s scholarly style hit new heights when he conducted a full orchestra for 90 minutes. An epic instrumental escapade, collaborations don’t get more culturally rich than this. Check YouTube for the full set.

The KLF & Tammy Wynette
Justified & Ancient (1991)

“They’re justified, they’re ancient and they like to the roam the land / They’re justified, they’re ancient and they drive an ice cream van”. We just don’t do lyrics like we used to. Or collaborations: this is still the best-sounding unlikely hookup ever.

And the winner is...
Skrillex & The Doors
Breakin’ A Sweat (2012)

One of the strangest, and definitely the most divisive, collaborations ever; can you even have a Doors track without Jim Morrison? And is Morrison turning or moshing in his grave right now? The surviving members of the band worked live in the studio with Skrillex to put this together for a documentary, Re:Generation. “It sounds fucking great,” says Ray Manzarek of The Doors. But then, he would...




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