Guest Playlist: Reuben from Peking Duk’s choice of the most iconic collaborations of all time

Peking Duk

Australia’s resident dance floor party specialist Peking Duk have teamed up with festival favourites The Wombats on collaborative electro-rock anthem “Nothing To Love About Love”. 

The single is the second official release from Peking Duk this year, and follows on from the release of “Move” earlier in the year, which featured Alisa Xalayith of The Naked and Famous. It features all the energy and good vibes we’ve come to expect from the duo, with a little of The Wombats’ brand of indie heartbreak mixed in. 

Talking about the track, Peking Duk’s Adam Hyde, commented that it: “was a collaboration that came about very quickly from a session I had in Los Angeles four months ago. I had written the beat in my bedroom a couple of days before, which I then showed to Murph and he turned in to something magical with a bunch of vocal ideas and this sentiment of there being nothing to love about love – something we’ve all felt at some point. From there, Murph reached out to the rest of The Wombats to lay down some extra, synths and bass in Oslo  and some drums in London and I finally sprinkled some more sauce and distorted sample chops on the song, then  we wrapped it up in a ribbon for you all to hear.”

To celebrate the release and the successful collaboration, Peking Duk’s Reuben Styles has kindly put together this guest playlist for us, featuring his top ten most iconic collaborations of all time. An eclectic and highly personal list, press play and read on through to find out how and why Reuben has made his choices.

 

The Bloody Beetroots and Steve Aoki – “Warp”

Before Adam and I had even heard of The Bloody Beetroots, all we listened to was rock and hip hop. Our mate showed us a song called “I Love The Bloody Beetroots” and immediately we were hooked. We simply had no idea music could sound like this. The Bloody Beetroots ultimately led to us starting our journey into a career as electronic musicians.

By the time “Warp” came out, we had already started DJing around the place and had already started trying to make music like it. “Warp” was a hit in Australia, it brought the thrash-electro genre to the forefront of Australian pop culture, and Aussies wanted to hear more of it.

DJ duos like the Aston Shuffle and ourselves just so happened to be making that kind of music at the time which opened massive opportunities for us getting booked in clubs and festivals around the country, in turn we were able to quit our hospo jobs and start dedicating all our time towards making tunes!

The Beatles and Eric Clapton – “While My Guitar Gently Weeps”

This barely needs a sentence. When someone like George Harrison asks someone like Eric Clapton if he would play on a song, I mean, fuck, that’s big! Imagine being able to say you’ve collaborated with The Beatles. Also Eric nailed it!

Aerosmith and RUN DMC – “Walk This Way”

What a smash. When I was eight or nine years old I was gifted a compilation album called The Message – The History of Rap. This song was like Track 2 on the compilation and I remember screaming WALK THIS WAYYYY every time that hook would come on.

I think though this song showed possibilities in the music world are endless. To bring two of the biggest artists from THE two biggest genres together like this could’ve been a catastrophe; but it was the exact opposite. Rock and Hip Hop got together and it fucken worked.

Since this song there was a wave of rock + hip hop marriages and it started getting worse and worse. I will admit I loved Linkin Park as a young child and even Fred Durst! It did get overdone though and SOMEHOW nothing will ever be as good as the first IMO. “Walk This Way” is untouchable.

Kanye and Estelle – “American Boy”

This sums up the end of high school. I mean, Kanye’s album Graduation sums it up, but this song had something special I don’t really know how to explain. YES it does have that classic back and forth any other duet has. But “American Boy” did it with steez. None of that classic duet nonsense where it’s lovey dovey the whole time, gets super camp, and rubbish lyrics and then somehow we pretend it’s okay to forget who we are and sing along to “I looooove it when we’re cruisin together”… “American Boy” has none of that. The slick production, Estelle‘s calm persona and Yeezy himself showed that duets can be fucking dope. Still to this day the song smacks and I have no doubt it’ll still smack in twenty years. Kanye for president. There. I said it.

The Strokes & Regina Spektor – “Modern Girls and Old Fashion Men”

This is a personal crush of mine. By no means to the world would this fall under the most ICONIC 10 collaborations… But.. To me it might be THE most iconic collaboration of all time. The Strokes were my favourite band at the time and Regina Spektor was my favourite singer at the time.

I remember hearing about this and I couldn’t believe my ears. I had to find the song. Back then it wasn’t on youtube and radio wasn’t playing it. I had to dig deeper. I found a version of it on Limewire but it had a different track title – “Post Modern Girls”… I didn’t even know if I had the right song or not!! Not to mention my file size was about 1 mb so it was awful quality.

But, without hesitation I burnt it to CD, put it in the stereo in the lounge room and pressed play. And that was it. I knew this was the one I had heard about. Still to this day, I have never loved a collaboration as much as this one. The back and forth between Julian and Regina is so natural it feels like they are the same person in two different emotional states with two different voices. The way they duck and weave and intertwine together then drift apart feels like they’ve been doing this since they were born. That insanely low quality mp3 still to this day warms me like nothing else. Thank you Regina Spektor and Julian Casablancas.

Deadmau5 and Kaskade – “I Remember”

Quite the step away from the previous couple but an iconic collaboration nonetheless. I remember this song being the highlight of my Europe trip in 2009. It was absurd in hindsight, eight mates and I spent a whole year working fifty hour weeks and saving up, simply to go on a bender in Europe. I actually couldn’t recommend anything more.

Anyways, nearing the end of the trip we heard about an event called ADE (Amsterdam Dance Event) and wanted to go check it out. The eight of us jumped straight on a train in Barcelona, skipped France completely and headed straight for Amsterdam. There was about thirty gigs every night so it was hard to choose which one… BUT the second we saw Deadmau5 and Groove Armada were gonna do a show together at the Heineken Music Hall we knew it was the one.

Daft Punk and Pharrell – “Get Lucky”

Big collaboration. Pharrell is the king of collaborations and to get on a Daft Punk song with none other than Nile Rodgers is about as big as it gets. Since this Daft Punk have collaborated with The Weeknd and shaped the modern world of great pop music.

Dr. Dre and Snoop – “Still Dre”

Dre 2001 is without question the most iconic collaborative album of all time. I don’t know if “Still Dre” is THE song but I had to pick at least one song from the album for this list. I honestly could’ve just picked ten songs from the album and the list would be 100% worthy. “Forgot About Dre”, “What’s The Difference”, “The Next Episode” I mean fuck me the album is ridiculous. I remember as a kid trying to buy the 18+ explicit album from EVERY single CD shop until eventually one allowed me to. I had to hide it from mum and I had to listen to it in private but ohhhh my it was worth it. Every song is bigger than the next and it just doesn’t stop. I guess I picked “Still Dre” as it’s my fav beat. But I happily could’ve picked any (or every) track from the album.

Dizzee Rascal and Calvin Harris – “Dance Wiv Me”

This song was just so fkn fun when it came out. A song to let you forget about everything, put on a cheesy af grin and dance like a turkey. Nothing more nothing less. Dizzee went on to collaborate with Armand and release Bonkers which we still play sometimes in Duk DJ sets today.. But Calvin… I mean, this was his first collaboration song. He obviously then went on to make a career of collaborating. He would surely now be the most successful collaborating artist on the planet. Nice one Dizzee!

Justin Timberlake and Pharrell – “Rock Your Body”

This is my final submission for most iconic collaborations. I reckon it’s a great note to end on. JT and Pharrell…. It couldn’t have worked out better. And yes of course Pharrell was always gonna have two songs on here. He would probably have a minimum two songs on anyone’s list of outstanding or iconic collaborations. Anything he touches is just a joke as it actually turns to gold. “Rock Your Body” is the top pick on this particular day as it reminds me of that time when Justified first came out. Twelve years old just hitting puberty and noticing girls. It’s a critical time in a young person’s life and those feelings you never quite get to feel again, or at least not to that extent. JT was the sound at the time so he wins. I guess Blink would’ve been here if they had only collab’d.

“Nothing To Love About Love” by Peking Duk and The Wombats is out now. Find the single HERE.

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Simon Clark

Books Editor. An admirer of songs and reader of books. Simon has a PhD in English and Comparative Literature. All errant apostrophes are his own.

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