I have always felt that "South Side" has had among the most pop radio potential of any of the songs on Moby's album _Play_, yet it lacked a certain edge. Gwen Stefani gives it that edge. As a diehard Moby fan long familiar with the original album version, the addition of her vocals took a little getting used to. But now I am convinced that the Gwen Stefani collaboration is the better version. She harmonizes very well with Moby. For good measure, both versions are included on this CD.
The Hybrid Dishing Pump Remix is good -- Hybrid's standard fare. Compared to the street-level feel of the original and single versions, this mix has a grand, expansive air. As the music builds, the interplay between the voices of Gwen and Moby is adeptly showcased. When they sing "love and darkness and my sidearm", an especially lovely harmony is achieved. The remix goes on to sound like a mellowed-out version of "Kill City" set to the tune of "South Side".
At first, I was not at all keen on the Pete Heller Park Lane Vocal. It is simplistic and the beat is rather bass-heavy. My sentiment improved with subsequent listens. The synth loop, bassline, and phasing effects are pleasant. Think of it as sunny day urban music (to borrow an adjective from Anthony Stokes' review).
The B-sides make this single really worthwhile. "Ain't Never Learned" brings back that classic _Early Underground_ flavor that has been missing in Moby's recent endeavors. Turn it up and you may find yourself dancing like mad. Fans of Moby's early techno music will recognize and appreciate the song structure, but this track is dry and not accessible to everyone, so YMMV. I enjoy this track more each time I hear it. Note that this is one of the B-sides *not* included on _Play: The B-Sides_, so it has some collectible value.
"The Sun Never Stops Setting" finishes out this and _Play: The B-Sides_. It is simple, soft, bouncy, and wonderful. It has a cinematic quality that is perfectly suited for the ending of a movie (before and during the end credits). I only wish it didn't fade out, so the feeling could be savored longer.