Upon the release of Will Butler’s second solo record Generations, Rolling Stone described album highlight “Hard Times” as “glitchy… [it] balances Butler’s brooding with disco-house keyboards.” Today, Butler is sharing the “Blood Rave” remix of “Hard Times,” created by Shiftee (who mixed Generations) and Zak Leever. It arrives with a menacing video: working mostly with stock footage, Butler has directed a nightmarish commercial responding to the Sesame Street DoorDash Super Bowl ad.
Here’s Butler on the song and its remix:
I love how Shiftee and Zak Leever took “Hard Times” and made it into something you can really picture Wesley Snipes killing vampires to. Shiftee and Zak are part of Alma Mater Records—a rad New York label that bridges underground culture and mainstream sound in all sorts of electronic music. Shiftee and I live a block from each other but live in very different sonic worlds, and it’s really satisfying to have those worlds meet. The song itself was written before the pandemic, but this remix sure fits with how the last year has felt.
Butler recently contributed to The Atlantic’s Ideas section with a piece about how the pandemic has changed his relationship to performance.