With deep roots in southern rap music, trap has evolved into a distinct style with well-known characteristics. While the basic model -- deep kicks, snare rolls, hi-hat mayhem, etc. -- has remained solidly intact, the boundaries of the genre are being constantly blurred and expanded.
Much of it's recent success as a force in the EDM world can be traced to a number of cross-genre remixes that caught the eye of fans who might otherwise have never encountered the sound. Now that trap has more or less officially become a mainstream style, the number of remixes produced in the sound has skyrocketed. Lucky for you, we've sifted through the muck to extract a list (in no particular order) of the 10 brightest gems in the trap remix game.
1. Major Lazer ft. The Partysquad - Original Don (Luminox Remix)
There's a magical quality to Major Lazer tracks, in that they tend to bring out the best in producers attempting to put their own spin on the distinct sound. Luminox makes his contribution with a blistering trap remix of "Original Don." The Phoenix-based DJ (who has roots in Chicago) creates and releases powerful energy through iconic build-ups and incredible bassed-out grooves, all while inventively bringing in the source vocals.
2. XV - 'Swervin' (Lunice Remix)'
Lunice is one of the most creative producers on the scene, so much so that it's hard to pin down or wrap up his one-of-a-kind style. The trap influence is there, no doubt, but the Canadian's music certainly takes the genre to another level altogether. This track in particular bridges the past, present, and future of rap music, drawing on the trill influence while adding a spaced-out flair.
3. Hudson Mohawke - 'Thunder Bay (Great Dane Remix)'
A key member of the Team Supreme group (along with luminaries like King Henry, Mr. Carmack, and Djemba Djemba), Great Dane is quickly making a name for himself as trap continues to hit new heights. Here we can see the California native bring his cerebral style to the original HudMo jam. The distorted horn samples mark one of the nastiest drops on this list, while the call-and-response of the vocal sample and synth lead lines keep the track moving at a breakneck pace.
4. Zeds Dead ft. Omar Linx - 'Cowboy (ƱZ Remix)'
The mysterious masked trap lord brings the heat on this rework of Zeds Dead's heavy dubstep banger. ƱZ replaces the hard rock edge of the original with his distinct brand of "ball trap music." With an arsenal of 808 kicks on full display, the track packs a serious punch. As always, ƱZ brings some substance to the style, as the signature high-pitched siren lead strikes an interesting contrast against the sampled electric guitar chords in the breakdown.
5. Flosstradamus - 'Roll Up (Baauer Remix)'
Before the Harlem Shake phenomenon, Baauer was already established as one of the bright young stars of the up-and-coming trap scene. After breaking through with club bangers like "Dum Dum" and "Yaow!" the Brooklyn phenom took the game to another level with his remix of "Roll Up."
6. Skrillex - 'Scary Monsters and Nice Sprites (GANG$IGN$ Trap Remix)'
Portland's GANG$IGN$ first made his mark with this interpretation of Skrillex' hit tune. The track makes use of Moore's nasty synth lead as a snappy chopped sample, which brings out the frenetic energy of the original. Hailed as one of the finest dubstep-to-trap remixes, GANG$IGN$' work has been played by the likes of Flosstradamus.
7. Chief Keef - 'I Don't Like (K Millz Remix)'
Given that Chief Keef's biggest track has become something of a trap anthem (at least as a crossover mainstream hit), it's no surprise that the EDM world is littered with remixes, ranging in quality from "Meh" to "Damn Son." Standing head-and-shoulders above the rest is K Millz, whose rework takes the tune to new heights. The chopped-up lead bells provide a haunting backdrop to Millz' brilliant expansive treatment of the Chicago rapper's vocals.
8. Djemba Djemba - 'I Just Go (Falcons Remix)'
Given his unique style and undeniable talent, it's hard to imagine anyone improving on a Djemba Djemba track. L.A.-based Falcons was just the producer to step up to the challenge. His "I Just Go" remix has reached pantheon-level status among bassheads, owing as much to its originality as its inarguable tastiness.
9. Kaskade & Deadmau5 - 'Trap For Me (Van Toth Bootleg)'
Easily the smoothest track on this list, Van Toth's take on "Move for Me" showcases a softer side of trap, while still maintaining the vibe and attitude we love. The Miami DJ's skills are on full display here as he molds a distinctly non-trap club tune into something new and different without losing the spirit of the original. The manner in which Van Toth transforms the original high-energy synth lead into a bassed-out trap flourish is sheer genius.
10. Benny Benassi - 'Satisfaction (RL Grime Remix)'
Rounding out our list is RL Grime's take on Benny Benassi's electro anthem. The classic lead line is let loose, unadulterated, in the track's opening phases, before Grime absolutely destroys it with his own spin on the anthemic melody. When the two finally come together, it's pure trap bliss.