As the Doors’ debut album turns 50, Doors fans and remixers Infected Mushroom discuss its influence, their work with Ray Manzarek and Robby Krieger, and more.
It’s been exactly half a century since the Doors unleashed their first album, widely considered a masterpiece of the rock era and one of the best debut LPs of all time. To celebrate five decades of “Light My Fire,” “The Crystal Ship,” “Break On Through” and “The End,” we’ve asked Amit Duvdevani – a.k.a. Duvdev of psy-trance innovators Infected Mushroom – to talk about his lifelong love for the album as well as Infected Mushroom’s remixes of several Doors classics.
Waves: When did you hear The Doors for the first time?
Duvdev: “In my basement, in Israel, with my older brothers, all listening to it together. I must have been around 10 years old.”
What was the immediate effect on you?
“I was blown away by that sound. My brothers influenced me to like it, too.”
Did the Doors’ music influence you when you first started out as a musician?
“The psy-rock element really encouraged us to take psy-trance and fuse it with rock. I came from the trance music scene, but the Doors showed us that another realm was possible.”
The Doors’ debut album sounded like nothing else before, and has since influenced many artists in different genres. How would you describe its magic?
“When I first heard ‘Break On Through’ and ‘The End’ – these very iconic, old school tracks – I was really struck by them. Never heard anything sounding like that before. The rage that ‘Break On Through’ expressed was amazing, especially for the period when it was released. I heard it later on of course – it had come out years before I was born – but even when I came in, that rage was something different.”
The Doors, “Break On Through”
“Besides those two songs, I’ve always loved ‘Light My Fire.’ These tracks helped light the Infected Mushroom fire in a big way.”
The Doors, “Light My Fire”
How were you approached to do Infected Mushroom remixes of the Doors’ songs?
“Our first manager in the US also manages the Doors estate, so he approached us to do remixes for the band. This connection enabled us to rock out a few times with [Doors guitarist] Robby Krieger, and to collaborate with [the band’s late keyboard player] Ray Manzarak, which was a unique experience. We were lucky enough to play with some of the original guys, which is very cool.”
And how did you approach working on the tracks?
“We approached it as an uncensored Infected Mushroom project. What I mean is that no one told us how to do it – we just did it our way with the psy approach and our own vibe, no pressure from the label. We took the files and did with them whatever we wanted – that’s what was so cool about this project.”
The Doors, “People Are Strange (Infected Mushroom Remix)”
Which songs did you end up remixing?
“We did four songs – ‘People Are Strange,’ ‘Riders on the Storm,’ ‘Break On Through’ and ‘Love Me Two Times.’ Of these, ‘Love Me Two Times’ hasn’t been released yet – it’s up to their management to decide whether and when to release it. I feel lucky enough to have done those tracks and have a classic like 'Riders on the Storm' included in one of my own albums!”
The Doors, “Riders on the Storm (Infected Mushroom Remix)”
Can you discuss your collaboration with Ray Manzarek? How was it to work with him, personally and professionally?
“Well, it was super-fun – he came to the studio and hung out. He played the keyboards in the studio – really professional, and he liked the input we gave. It was fun times, and quite an honor.”
Do you think that the Doors’ legacy has changed through the years with new generations of fans?
“Music has changed, and the world has changed, but their music is still relevant after 50 years. If, after all these years, your music is still being talked about – that’s unreal. I hope my music will stay around for that long!”
Do you think there are any heirs to the Doors in today’s music?
“I don’t think so and that’s a shame. There isn’t even one psychedelic rock band that delivers this kind of high capacity today. The Doors were truly one of a kind.”
If the four Doors members met for the first time in 2017 and decided to play music together, how do you think they would sound?
“Like Infected Mushroom! [laughs]”
The Doors, “The End”
Want to discover more about Infected Mushroom’s musical influences? Check out their playlist of favorite songs and their career-spanning interview.